"But as for me, I will never boast about anything except the cross of the Lord Jesus Christ, through whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world." Galatians 6:14

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Making Your Bed

In our sermon series entitled PAIN, we had a special guest - a Green Beret - come and share his experiences of training and serving our country as a part of an elite Special Forces groups.  Discussing the training and the demands placed upon them, Green Beret's (and all Special Forces groups for that matter) must develop a "no quit" attitude.  This attitude is intricate in survival and the survival of your team.  In our conversation, Mr. Mercer mentioned a commencement speech given in 2014 by Admiral William H. McRaven.  In his commencement address to the graduates of the University of Texas, Admiral McRaven illustrates the importance of making your bed.

"Making your bed means you have accomplished the first task of the day successfully…” Admiral McRaven says, "…and doing the first thing successfully means that there are many more success to come."  The point that Admiral McRaven was making is that we must do the little things right in order to have success at the big things.  We must work just as hard at the little things as we do at the big things if we expect success.  The little things develop the determination to do everything correctly.

As Christians, if we expect to make a difference for God, we must prepare ourselves for the opportunities to share the Gospel, be disciple makers, and be the hands and feet of Christ in our community, state, and world.  And this is only possible if we do the little things; that in turn, prepare us to do the big things.  One example is reading your Bibles regularly and storing the word of God in your heart (Psalm 119:11).  In this individual task, we are equipping ourselves for the conversations that God will orchestrate.

But even further than that, we are developing a strong foundation of love for God and a trust in Him that will not be shaken in the darkest and most difficult times of life.  In those moments - with proper preparation - we will overcome the tasks before us with God leading the way.

Admiral McRaven provided a great illustration for us to live by.  If you would like to hear the speech in its entirety, click here.

So in closing, make your bed...after you have spent time with God.

Friday, June 30, 2017

Another Lesson Learned

As a child, I remember my legs hurting from time-to-time and my mom would explain to me that the discomfort was caused by growing pains.  The skin and muscles were stretching as the bones grew.  With this only being temporary pain, it was something I did not forget.  After fifteen years of ministry, there are many things that have stretched my soul and emotions that I would explain as growing pains.

Now, every minister has experienced painful encounters in the church as a result of ministering; however, I would like to share some personal growing pains.  Growth is not always fun; and although sometimes painful; the Holy Spirit convicts us in order to mature us.  Sure I have battle scars as a result of ministry; and yes, each confrontation has shaped me, but I find that when God reveals my personal faults, that this type of lesson is better learned and is more fruitful in my life and ministry.  God often shapes me through daily Bible reading as He opens my eyes, mind, and heart; but I would like to share some other events that have shaped me in this article.

Some of the major events in my life include getting married, having children, getting an education, and being called to shepherd some great people that God has placed in my path.  I consider these events major, because the listed events have led to many other great event in my life.

Getting married has taught me (and is still teaching me) how to share life with others.  I typically enjoyed my isolation growing up – doing things my way, when I wanted to do them – but marriage has broken down the wall of isolation and forced me to let people into my life and share life with them.
Being blessed with four children – and each one being different – each child has contributed to the way that I think about life.  For the purpose of this newsletter, one significant lesson from having children is understanding what other people are saying when it comes to children.  Generally, most people say the same things, just everyone seems to say it in a different manner.  Understanding this has allowed me to encourage others in parenting and being involved in their child’s life.

Getting an education has broadened my vocabulary and allowed me to define the things that God has been doing throughout my life.  Education has also deepened my passion and love for the one true and holy God.  And lastly my education has broadened my ability to think logically over difficult areas of Scripture.  While applying this logical thinking to life, in turn gives way to better leading.  Although we should never stop learning, I am still internalizing all that has been taught over the past 6 ½ years of school.

Shepherding many great people over the last fifteen years has actually shaped me more than I have been able to shape them.  Seeing real people that have real hurts awakens me to the realization that life is much bigger than my own.  This realization has driven me to my knees before the throne of God.  Now realizing that the problems that we face are much bigger than we can handle, I have now become more dependent upon the sovereign God of the universe.  Learning to walk with hurting people in the midst of tragedy, is humbling and has deepened my faith.

Another lesson for me that I have learned from shepherding great people is that most of the time, those who have walked through life are a lot wiser than me.  Even though they may have reached out for my opinion, the reality is that they have the answer and are trying to do their part in developing me into a pastor.  Upon this realization, their patience with me, care for me, and willingness to listen to me has flooded my soul with great appreciation.

But this article was birthed out of another stage of life that has grown me a little more.  This stage of life is walking through my oldest daughter’s senior year.  Unconsciously, I have attempted to be at every Cross Country meet and softball game.  But by trying to balance time with my other three kids and being faithful and obedient to the call of God, I have fallen short in several areas.  Although I have a higher expectation of myself than others may, I truly feel that I have let some people down.  But it wasn’t until I actually spoke the words that the lesson became reality for me; and those words were, “I have a senior this year and I will not be able to commit to that.”

Hearing myself say those words began a flood of emotion.  The emotions were not necessarily over my daughter growing up; well, because…that is why we have kids, to rear them and give them the best chance to succeed in life as an adult.  But the emotion that I was feeling was anger at myself and the attitude that would develop when I heard others say these same words.

Every time I would hear someone else say these words, I would categorize them and become somewhat aggravated.  Although I would not verbalize nor hold a grudge toward others when they would not follow through on a commitment; I would however, think to myself that any true commitment requires sacrifice.

Let’s just say that I have matured again.  Although some may think, “It’s about time”, please know that I desire to mature a little more every day.  After actually typing the words of this article, admittedly, I was reminded of the numerous ways that God has matured me.  And having probably exceeded your attention span, let me quickly share the latest lesson that God has taught me.

During my prayer time, I mostly pray for others rather than myself.  Actually I usually only pray, “God, allow me to see as you see, think as you think, hear as you hear, and love as you love” when praying for myself.  I firmly believe that a prayer such as this is according to God’s will, and God is more apt to answer a prayer that is according to His will.  But in praying this, I firmly believe that God has opened my mind because I have asked Him to do so.  And each time God opens my mind, I mature a little more.

So, over the years, if I have made you feel as if I was aggravated or displeased with you over something, first please forgive me. I am very task oriented and progress driven.  Second, know that I am a work in progress.  A work in progress that is actually working in the progress.

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Prepared to Worship

I feel like starting every post with "It's been a while...", but I do not apologize for my span between posts anymore.  I love the ministry; and quite frankly, I will do ministry over blogging any day.  As some may argue that "blogging is ministry", I would agree that by sharing a Christ-centered, Gospel-focused voice - by any means, anytime - can be a ministry.  However, when needs arise or opportunities to meet with someone personally are given, I will choose a personal interaction every time.

But with that said, as a minister the Sunday morning worship hour does not allow enough time to paint a Gospel picture for all of life.  Although God is not confined to time, we are.  One way a minister is able to convey more information when time does not allow is to blog.  But then, who has time to regularly blog?  Hopefully time will allow me the opportunity to blog more in the near future - since I have now graduated seminary :-) - and share a Christ-centered, Gospel-focused view on current events.

So, now that I have your attention, what would I like to share with you.  Worship has been a big topic for many years in our church.  We previously looked at worship during a fourteen week sermon series, and in this blog I would like to share some reminders of the importance and the ways to prepare ourselves for worship before arriving at corporate worship.

I recently read a blog post that reminded me of our need to prepare for worship.  And during the sermon series we looked at preparing ourselves for worship by saying, "We need to spend a personal time with God on Sunday, just like any other day.  It's not that the worship service can't lead you into worship, but the point of personal time with God is that you get alone time with God.  That should excite the soul every day!"

One of the other things that was discussed during our previous sermon series was how the the family - before leaving the house for worship - should pray together, and ask God to speak to them through Sunday school, fellowship, song, and worship.

If you know me at all, you know that there was much more to be said on the subject, but the point is that we need to prepare ourselves for worship prior to gathering corporately.  I recommend the blog post (the highlighted "blog post" above) I had mentioned, while encouraging everyone to wake up a few minutes earlier and begin preparing themselves to gather with other believers in worshiping before the throne of God.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Vision, 2017 and Beyond

Well, it's officially 2017 now.  While thinking over this past Sunday's "vision" sermon and reflecting on the things I wished to have said, please know; as with all sermons, time does not allow for everything to be conveyed.  I'm sure that those in attendance appreciate my being conscious of time, so I will share with you in this blog a little more of what God had pressed upon me from last week.

During this Sunday's "vision" sermon, we mentioned that the mission, vision, and purpose for Campbellsburg Baptist Church has not changed.  The Mission and Ministry handbook that was published and distributed last year requires no updates or revisions for our continued ministry.  But this Sunday we did take a close look at the individual Christian that makes up CBC.  In Ephesians, we noticed Paul giving the church a hope in their "oneness" with the Father and how we are called to walk in a manner worthy of our calling.  This manner demands that we first consider our relationship with God.

In addition to last week’s sermon, let me say that we must take serious our opportunity and our calling to make much of God in our daily lives.  But for the believer, it all starts with our desire to know God better and to accomplish this, it requires that we study and spend personal time with Him on a regular basis.  With life being so full of distractions, it is totally understandable how one can put-off squeezing out more time for anything.  But if someone has been called into a relationship with Jesus Christ by the Holy Spirit, I can't imagine anything replacing the love, forgiveness, and promise that was received during the conversion.

I am not perfect, and yes, there are times that I to put-off spending time alone with God because of my own personal desires; however, when I do put-off that time with God, I miss it.  I miss spending time with God and listening to Him speak to me through His Word.  I miss praying to God and then later seeing Him answer my prayers.

Let me challenge each of you to make the commitment this year to sacrifice your personal desires in order to make sure you spend time with God on a daily basis.  If you desire to study in groups, I will connect you with others that share your desires.  I also commit to meeting with you to study together until you feel more comfortable studying on your own.

Having already stated that there is more to be said than time will allow each Sunday; well, so does God have so much to say that an entire lifetime will allow.  Let me ask you to reflect on this; there is so much to know about God, that He gives us an eternity to learn it.  Will you put forth the time to learn what God is teaching us right now?

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Outward, Missional, or Gone Fishing...It's all the same

The link below is a fabulous blog that really speaks of my heart as well.  Having asked numerous times, "Are we fishers of men or keeper's of the aquarium", I encourage you to follow the below link and prayerfully consider the possible way that God is calling you into the ministry at Campbellsburg Baptist Church.


Friday, May 20, 2016

Transgender Today

In light of the latest news regarding the Obama administrations transgender policy, there is a clear confusion regarding this issue by many that I have spoken to.  Many concerns and confusions are centered around the legality of this policy and the magnitude in which this moral shift will eventually invade every home.  Out of love and grace, let me say that the purpose of this post is not to speak Biblically to the issue; but rather, to provide information to the reader by clarifying the many terms of the transgender movement, while identifying the legal rights that are being infringed upon by our government.

For now, I am going to direct you to a post that accomplishes the above for us.  Please click here to read the post by the ERLC of the SBC.  This post provides clear definition of what is happening.  Although this post contains occasional legal jargon that can be a bit confusing at times, all in all, the ERLC provides a simplistic understanding regarding the policy that many seem to be concerned with.

In future posts we will decipher what the churches responsibility is concerning the issue of transgender, while continuing to be salt and light within our home, church, community, and schools.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016


Hospitality has become a lost art.  There are many reasons for which we could lay blame for this, but fellowshipping with our neighbors has become almost non-existent.  A big reason for no longer opening our homes to our neighbor is that society rarely views the world as God would have us to.  As this paragraph may sting a little, I urge you to continue reading.

The Bible has much to say regarding hospitality; in fact, God goes so far as to write entire books within the Bible on the subject.  Hospitality is one way in which the believer lives out the Gospel, as well as being on mission in our community.

As I could spend the time - and by not doing so is not belittling the importance – in showing how Scripture instructs hospitality, I feel led to discuss a few ways that we can be more hospitable.  And this fits into the mission of our church for 2016.

At the beginning of 2016, we discussed the mission and ministry of Campbellsburg Baptist Church.  In doing so, through the means of our newsletter, we have challenged each member to be on mission in various ways; such as prayer walks throughout our community, and actively inviting people to church.  While continuing to challenge our church with this mission, it is necessary to stress the importance of engaging our community.  And in order to invest in people’s lives with the Gospel, there are a few things to consider.

First, we must have a love and concern for our neighbor.  Without the Saving Grace of Jesus Christ being the fuel of our souls, it is difficult to see the world as God desires.

Second, we must be intentional, an intentionality that is driven by the passion of Jesus Christ.  A passion that manifests itself through sacrificing time and plans in order to be available to our community.  Intentionality is a necessity in developing a routine of being hospitable, because there is always going to be something else that we could be doing.

Thirdly, a sincere prayer life.  Prayers that petition God to send the right people into our lives in which we can invest the Gospel through hospitality.

As there will be more to come about being hospitable in future blogs, let me conclude by urging everyone to view this podcast.  It is about 15 minutes and very powerful.  Testimonies like this podcast should motivate us in being intentional and prayerful about what the Gospel means to us and how we can be Christ-centered, Gospel-driven believers in our communities.