April 7th, 2014
Today was an awesome day! I finished the series on Passion Killers.
Today we talked about how unresolved conflicts can kill your passion for God. The characteristics of unresolved conflict are jealousy, resentment, and unforgiveness.
Now think about this - some 2,000 years ago upon the Cross of Calvary, Jesus settled the unresolved conflict between us and God. He paid the cost with precious blood.
Paul said this to the believers in Ephesus; "Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. And be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you." Ephesians 4:31-32 (NKJV)
If we would put this passage into practice - we would not have any unresolved conflicts!
What Are You Preparing For
December 4th, 2012
It is Christmas time! I love Christmas - it's my favorite holiday!
People are rushing about preparing for the holidays. I can't say I love the hecticness of the crowded stores and streets. This preparation seems to all start with Black Friday that has worked its way into Thanksgiving Thursday.
Let me ask this, "What are we preparing for?" It's like we are preparing for all the secular emphasis of Christmas (gifts, parties, and decorations), but we are leaving out what really matters - our spiritual preparation to celebrate the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ.
The Advent Season, established centuries ago by the early Church fathers, was formed to assist us in preparing ourselves for the Christmas holy-days.
Every year, I love to preach Advent messages. The word advent means coming or arrival. This is referring to Jesus' first coming or arrival. With His first coming, Jesus brings us the gifts of hope, peace, love and joy from our heavenly Father. Each of these gifts enables us to live a godly life - getting us ready for Jesus' second coming.
Over the next few weeks, spend some time preparing for the real reason of Christmas.
In The Name of Jesus
August 19th, 2012
This past Sunday was such a great day. God really touched
hearts in our service.
My plan was to preach about the power in Jesus' name. Did you notice I said my plan? Our Worship Team sung the song "The Name of Jesus Is Lifted High" by Eddie James. The atmosphere was filled with the Spirit of God.
When I came to the pulpit I could fill the Spirit of God working in the hearts of those there. I said "OK Lord, what do you want me to do?" I felt a stirring in my heart to not preach but to pray for our congregation. So I read John 14:13-14; (13) "And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. (14) If you ask anything in My name, I will do it." Then I challenged them to trust God and to ask, in Jesus' name, for what they need God to do in their lives. I then asked them to come forward for prayer and they did!
I think it's safe to say, that all of those who came forward, God touched.
You know something - that's what God intends for church to be! We gather together so God can refresh us, encourage us, touch us and heal our hearts and bodies. I don't believe God wanted church to be what it has became today. Church is NOT 3 songs, a prayer, a sermon, an empty altar call and then go home. Church is a gathering of believers who really believe in the name of Jesus!
May I encourage you to trust God and to ask, in Jesus' name, for what you need God to do in your life. Go ahead and do it!
Sweet Sound in His Ear
July 15th, 2012
What an awesome church service we had Sunday! Everything seemed to fall right into place for the Holy Spirit to just move right in. The presence of God was so strong.
The worship was amazing! We were singing the old song I Love You Lord and when we came to the part that says "Let it be a sweet sound in Your ear" a thought came to my mind. The thought was, "What sweet things are we saying in God's ear?"
I thought about how Becki and I love to whisper in each other's ear. We tell each other how much we love the other. We do it because we know it tickles but at the same time we love to hear what the other says.
I know it might sound strange to us - but we can whisper sweet things into God's ear! It's true! Look at these 3 verses.
- Psalms 17:6 (NKJV) "I have called upon You, for You will hear me, O God; Incline Your ear to me, and hear my speech."
- Psalm 31:2 (NKJV) "Bow down Your ear to me, deliver me speedily; be my rock refuge, a fortress of defense to save me."
- Psalm 86:1 (NKJV) "Bow down Your ear, O LORD, hear me; for I am poor and needy."
In each of these verses, the Psalmist expresses the strong desire to speak directly into the ear of God. They also show God's desire for us to speak into His ear.
The sweetness comes from our expressions of faith in His love, protection and his care for us. We know God does all of those things for us but we should never stop whispering the sweetness of our faith and love in His ear.
It Ain't Over Till It's Over
July 9th, 2012
This past Sunday started off very rough.
When I got to church this morning I found half of our lights and half of our wall plugs were not working. That meant none of our sound system was working - our Nursery had no lights! And to make matters worse we had no air conditioning! "What do we do now?" - I asked myself.
After checking out a few things it appeared to me we had an electrical problem. No joke Shoumaker! So I called our local power company for help. It wasn't long before a nice young man showed up and went to work. It didn't take him long to find the problem. We lost one phase of our electrical power for our facilities. Well, to make a long story short - he fixed everything and got us up and running. Thank you Lord for that young man!
The only problem was, IT WAS STILL SO HOT in the church! Before the power was fixed, our sound man, Gerad, said "Looks like we are going to have to do like the missionaries do it." I realized something - we are SO spoiled! Missionaries put up with so many obstacles in getting the Gospel to people and we can't handle just a little inconvenience. God - thank you for putting up with Your spoiled kids!
Guess what? We had church anyway and we had a great time! In fact the sermon kind of went a long with what we went through. I talked about our Christian race. Are we in the race? Are we ready for the race? Don't give up - because it ain't over until it's over!
Remember this - we must continue to run the race no matter what we are going through at the moment.
Let me leave you with these quotes:
In order to succeed, your desire for success should be greater than your fear of failure
Failure is a detour, not a dead-end street
Remember - It Ain't Over Until It's Over! So get in the race and stay in the race!
Failing is not a disgrace unless you make it the last chapter of your book
Interdependent On Him
July 2nd, 2012
This past Sunday's service was just awesome!
I know what you are thinking, "Every pastor says that!" You know something - you are SO right! But Sunday was truly a great day. The Holy Spirit just swept through and touched so many lives. He is the Great Pastor!
Most pastors, including myself, want to plan out everything for the entire service. We want it ALL to go according to our plans. We feel we have our fingers on the pulse of what our congregation needs. Fortunately, the Holy Spirit really knows what we need and He knows how to mess up our plans.
I planned on preaching on the difference between being independent and interdependent. God decided to show us just how interdependent we are toward Him.
One lady told me today that the Lord showed her that she had to let go of all her past bitterness. She said she could feel all those hurts and bitterness melt off of her. This all happened as she saw other people so into the worship of God and she begin to get hungry to be where they were. As she moved closer to God – God moved closer to her. She felt the liberating power of God freeing her of all her bitterness.
Praise God! He showed us what it means to be interdependent on Him!