Monthly Archives: October 2008

Election Time – “Wamp, Wamp, Wamp!”

Do you remember what Charlie Brown’s parents sounded like?  It’s hard to spell, but my attempt is “Wamp Wamp, Wamp.”  No one could understand anything they said, except Charlie Brown of course.  That’s kind of the way I feel when I hear politicians speak.  Lots of sounds come out of their mouths–most of which is very hard to understand and much of which isn’t true.  If I sound cynical, I guess I am.  The simple fact of the matter is that I don’t really trust them.

There’s another side of this too.  I see and hear so much doom and gloom when it comes to our country.  The economy is bad. Morality is bad.  People are bad.  In general, all is bad and getting worse.  Yet, we still live in the greatest nation on earth.

In this election time, there is something that I want all of us to understand and remember.  God is still in control and ultimately, He will see to it that His people are taken care of.  That’s His promise and we ought to trust Him.  Politics has never, and will never be the answer to our needs, desires, and problems.  There has never been a time in our nation when “all” was well.  Check out the history and you’ll see that.  There have been great leaders and poor leaders.

Here’s the point:  When all around us things look like they are falling apart, Christians ought to be the most relaxed people on the planet.  We should be calm in our spirit that Jesus is still our Savior, the Holy Spirit still indwells us, and God is still on the throne.  Praise His Holy Name!!!!!

I read an email today that summed it up for me.  I don’t know the original author to give credit.  If you do, please tell me and I will credit them.  This is awesome!!

Top 10 Predictions No Matter Who Wins the Election

1.   The Bible will still have all the answers.
2.   Prayer will still work
3.   The Holy Spirit will still move.
4.   God will still inhabit the praises of His people.
5.   There will still be God-anointed preaching.
6.   There will still be singing of praise to God.
7.   God will still pour out blessings upon His people.
8.   There will still be room at the Cross.
9.   Jesus will still love you.
10. Jesus will still save the lost when they come to Him.


Awesome Day

We had a wonderful Sunday at Creekside.  It really started on Saturday for some.  We had a chicken stew and some of the guys that take care of that stayed up all night cooking and getting ready for it.  They cooked nearly 80 gallons of stew and by Sunday after lunch, it was all gone.  We sold it by the gallon and half gallon.  For the church, the teens served the adults and money was donated to them for their service and the stew.  We raised nearly $1000.00 for our teens to go to Winterfest.  Wow!!  I think it’s awesome for our youth to do things like this.  It teaches them to earn their way instead of having it given to them.  They are learning the value and rewards of hard work.

The worship time was wonderful as well.  Our praise team led songs ranging from old traditional hymns to contemporary Christian tunes.  One of our shepherds led our thoughts for communion, using a chain and talked about how Jesus sets us free from the chains of sin.  My sermon focused on Romans 5-7.  God spoke through me from these passages about how we often excuse ourselves and sin based on Paul’s struggles of Romans 7, and we ignore Romans 6 that teaches us that we are “slaves to Christ.”  This slavery is a choice and we cannot live a lifestyle of sin while claiming Jesus as Lord.  We watched some video illustrations about how God uses small things to His glory.  One of the videos taught that our lives leave a “ripple effect.”  The questions of this video that I will never forget was, “What will be the residue of your life?  What will you leave behind?”

Sunday ended with our teens deciding on their own to go and see the movie, “Fireproof.”  If you’ve not seen it, it is a must see–especially for those who are married or are thinking about mariage.  I think it’s wonderful for our teens to go together to see movies like this.  What a lesson!

All in all, the whole day was a victory in my life.  It was a day where I rested easy in my own quiet moments and enjoyed even the busy moments.  Ellen and I even got to spend some alone time out to eat.  I wonder how God feels when we pour out our lives to Him in praise, work, quiet time, and fellowship.  I hope it feels as good to Him as it does to us.

Interesting Encounter With Couples

Thanks for your prayers and thoughts about our meeting today.  Here’s the report as far as I can tell.  We were scheduled to meet with three couples, but one of them had to reschedule.  You have to remember that these couples are wanting to have their divorce proceedings resended.

The first couple arrived a couple of minutes early.  I had stepped out of the room for a couple of minutes just before they got there.  The husband was friendly, extending his hand and introducing himself to Ellen.  The wife was not.  She immediately said, “Why are we here?  We’re going to counseling.”  Ellen explained that we were not counselors and that I would be back shortly to explain.

When I got back to the room, I asked them if they knew why they were there.  She said that they were basically court ordered to be there and she had work to do and needed to get going and gone.  She was not a happy camper.

After explaining that we were not there to do anything but help them in their marriage and we were volunteers who just cared that their marriage work, she really chilled out.  Her husband said that she was the one who started this whole divorce process, but did not act like he was all that interested in stopping it.  We did not set a specific date to meet with them, but we did exchange phone numbers.  I got their permission to call them back.

The second couple was the exact opposite of the first.  They were much younger and much happier to be there.   I asked them why they wanted to stop their divorce.  The wife said, “Because of our children.”  They have two boys age two and four.  The husband said that since they had been separated they older boy had been really hurt and was acting out about it.  They could not stand to see him hurt and decided to give it another go. They were willing to set a date to meet.  Ellen and I both left the room so excited that we will have an opportunity to help this young couple.

We signed on to be contacts any time they need us.  Please continue to pray for this process.  We have a lot of work to do, but see it as a real blessing and opportunity.

Lunch With Steve/Prayer Request

Just got back from lunch with the “Puckster” as Cecil calls him.  Ellen, Steve Puckett, and myself had lunch  together.  We met at Legends in downtown Florence.  It was really good to see him.   I always enjoy Steve coming to visit his mom because we get to visit as well. One of those times he got to sing on our praise team.  He’s quite a tenor singer too.

Please pray for Ellen and me.  We are going tomorrow to divorce court.  Wait!  Not for us, but hopefully for a good thing.  We are meeting with two couples who have chosen to resend their divorce proceedings.  One of our judges has made it a quest of his to help these couples to not have to come back to divorce court ever again.

The way we are trying to help is through marriage mentoring.  We will meet with these couples at least once a month to simply talk about marriage.  They have to agree to the process, but if they will, I’m sure we can help.  Please pray that they will make a go of it.

One reason the judge is trying to get this to fly is the poor success rate of couples that try and stop divorce proceedings.  He says that 75% of them return six months later to go ahead with the divorce.  He thinks that through marriage mentoring they can slow that rate down and help these couples be more successful.

I see it as an opportunity to get into our community in a unique way with the love of Jesus.  If these folks can see that there’s hope in their marriage, then maybe we can help them find real hope in Jesus Christ.

What Would You Die For?

I may have asked this on my blog before.  I can’t remember.  Last night we talked about “Sacrifice” at our monthly meeting with the college and young adults group.  We call it the “ConXion.”  It is a time of worship, praise, and challenge.

We looked at some movie clips from the movie “Luther.”  He stood for what he believed even though he knew it might cost him his life.  He stood in the face of Rome and the Catholic church and basically told them that they were mistaken about a great many things.  When confronted with the choice to recant what he said in his writings or face possible death, Luther chose to stand by what he had said.

Our discussion boiled down to two main questions.  1. What would you sacrifice in order to see the truths of God’s word preserved?  2.  For what truths would you put your life on the line?

When you start asking the questions like that, my list gets small.  I can boil it down to really one or maybe two.  How would you answer?  What makes us fear or not fear such questions?

Reacting To Gay and Lesbian Activism

Today at Heritage Christian University there is a group of Gay and Lesbian activists marching in protest against the school. The reason for their protest is mind-blowing and only something that could happen in America. We have become so politically correct that we have forgotten the rights of Christians.

This group is traveling the south and visiting Christian schools. They basically called the school and told them they were coming and wanted to teach their “lifestyle” to the students. They told them they wanted class rooms and facilities to do this. The school’s response was done with sternness, but also with love. They did not allow them to come on their campus and teach something that the administration doesn’t believe. The way in which this group responds is, if they don’t get their way, they protest. That’s what is going on right now as I write this.

Guess who was invited to the “show.” The media of course. It’s going to be interesting to see what the media in our area does with this. Too far one way or the other will destroy them.

Now, I’m well aware of how the church has been cruel, in some cases, when it comes to this issue, but in this case the oppression and pressure has come from the other side for the purpose of media exposure and attention. God help us to love the sinner and deal with the sin, but don’t let us forget the sin. To say that I love homosexual people is the truth, but having same sex sex is not natural and goes against what God has called his people to be.

The scriptures are clear. (Romans 1:25-27 NCV) “They traded the truth of God for a lie. They worshiped and served what had been created instead of the God who created those things, who should be praised forever. Amen. {26} Because people did those things, God left them and let them do the shameful things they wanted to do. Women stopped having natural sex and started having sex with other women. {27} In the same way, men stopped having natural sex and began wanting each other. Men did shameful things with other men, and in their bodies they received the punishment for those wrongs.”

God help us to know how to reach out to people of all faiths, races, genders, and lifestyles with the truth of Jesus and to call this world back to a “Jesus lifestyle” of love, compassion, and service to others.

“Im A Winner”

When you hear the phrase, “I’m a winner,” what first comes to your mind?  Do you think of a sporting event where a player is being interviewed?  Maybe you think of a contestant who has just taken home the grand prize.  And there’s always the thought of that cocky person who just thinks they are God’s gift to mankind and deems themselves the winner at everything.  Don’t you just love to be around that kind of person?

Well, last Saturday I heard those words from a man in the hospital with terminal cancer.  He was getting ready to go home with a morphine pump for the pain.  His words to me were, “I don’t understand why I have to go through this, but God has a plan and I’m a winner.”  What a testimony.  I stood in awe of his faith in Jesus.  He certainly understands that faith is truly the victory.

I think of these words in scripture when I hear someone proclaim Jesus in that way:  (Revelation 14:13 NCV)  “…Happy are the dead who die from now on in the Lord.  The Spirit says, ‘Yes, they will rest from their hard work, and the reward of all they have done stays with them'”