Sunday, May 31, 2009


I once heard Wayne Smith, then the Senior Minister of Southland Christian Church in Lexington Ky. talk about his Sundays. After preaching multiple services on Sunday Monring and then again Sunday night, he would come home and his wife would want to watch "In Touch" with Dr. Charles Stanley. He did not think that was all that great, although Stanley was his wife's "favorite" preacher. He told us that when he comes home after a long day, he did not want to see Stanley, but preferred seeing Clint Eastwood as Dirty Harry, say, "Go ahead, make my day."

So today has been long... the whole week has been long... Many meetings...some counseling, lots of thinking and dreaming about the future, and writing a sermon, thinking about future sermons... then two sermons this morning,,, visiting a Life group this afternoon and then off to FIGHT NIGHT tonight. All of it was good... but it drained me more than usual.

This is all a pace of a day I think that i can handle until I actually do it... and then I get a sick feeling... the "wall" is fast approaching and I crash... It was too much. I have crashed... I have this feeling of being closed in...words slow down, and some words do not make it from my brain to my mouth. Sentences are harder to complete. It is all a sign that I have gone too far. This week felt alot like some of the weeks before strokes three years ago... you know the kind where you don;t feel like you have control over much, you are reacting to lots of crisis and the energy is flowing out of you...

So I get home, through on some shorts... start thinking about my next week...decided to watch some TV...nothing on ( basketball finals begins Thursday). Oh , there is Hockey... now that looks like a treat! NOT!

So we finish off the TNT movie ( TWISTER). and then hit the DVR button... What is left to watch from the previous week?

Well, it is highly spiritual. It is uplifting... No, it is not Charles Stanley, or Dr. David Jeremiah... ( I like them both) No, on this night its not Dirty Harry..."

The winner is.... WIPEOUT.(ABC).. That is no conincidence since I am totally wipeout. That is about as mindless as you can get at the end of the day. And it will help me shut it down. Sometimes that is what I need.

I am shutting it down this week , hibernating, writing sermons, study guides from Moses and basically going to get two weeks work done in that I can be gone for 3 1/2 weeks. One week in Chicago... 2 plust weeks on the North Florida Coast.

But for tonight, it is about watching people make total fools of themselves by trying to navigate a obstacle course that is impossible to conquer. Now that is entertainment.

Got to Go.... they have the slippery course coming up...looks cool.


Saturday, May 09, 2009


This weekend we celebrate Mother's day. Always a fun day. But this year it is a little extra special. We will be leaving in a little bit to go to Fayetteville. Tomorrow, Nathaniel, Elizabeth and Grace will participate in a Baby Dedication at Fellowship Bible Church.

Baby Dedications are really special. At FCC we used to do them once a year. We would bring a boatload of babies, moms and dads up on the stage, ask a couple questions, and pray. But three years ago we started doing them individually. This is a special moment for the family and the church.

Either way, this is important. There are three committments in a baby dedication. One is the committment of the child to God. Every child conceived is a gift from God. ( Psalm 139). Every child is special, and holds special promise for joy and happiness . But, I believe that God puts us on the earth for a purpose. And the discovery of that purpose begins with parents saying, "God we know this child comes from you, and that he/she is YOURS."

Second, there is a committment of the parents to God. This dedication is a public step of committment to raise the child to love God and love others ( Mt. 22:37). When parents stand before God, family and congregation, they are saying, "we dedicate ourselves to be examples of Godly living, to raise our child to know God and His Son Christ, and to follow His commands."( Deut. 6)

There is a third committment. It is often overlooked in many instances. It is the committment ot the Church family to assist and support mom, dad and child in this monumental task of raising children. So in our dedications, there is a part where the church family is asked to committ as well. We take it seriously.

When we began to have children, 26 years ago, we prayed that each one of them would love God and love others. All four of ours do. Now, there is another generation. And our prayer is the same.

We could not be more thankful that Gracie's parents love God and love others... and we know that with their committment, the committment of their church family, the committment of their extended family and the blessing of God will result in a wonderful young lady being used by God to "make up there come down here."

Sunday, May 03, 2009


Over the past three weeks , we challenged our church to bring food to stock our Community Care Food Pantry. We have been giving out alot of food over the past 12 months. There is a big need for people who are finding themselves squeezed by economic realities. So today was the day, and the front of the stage was just FULL. I loved seeing people bring their food sacks in. From Senior Adults, to very young kids, they brought the food in and put it on the stage.

Why was this important?

1. It is the responsibility of the church to reach out and feed those who need food. The church can do a great job with this, if we take it seriously. There are lots of other things that our small groups and classes do for people. But this is something everyone can get involved in.

2. I love the idea of getting the church involved in this. We could go buy food, but that does not give us "buy in" with the congregation. We could go door to door in the neighborhoods and collect food. That's not a bad idea, but why not just ask the church to bring it? We did and they did.

3. We need to give people of all ages opportunities to GIVE. It's not just about money in the offering plate. We want to expand this aspect of stewardship to show people there are lots of ways to give. Food, time, encouragement, prayers, love, and so much more!

4. We needed a "tangible" way to show people that we have resources that we want to share. God has blessed us, and in turn, we believe that we are to be a blessing. We want to bless our church family and our community. This was just one way we could do this...

I thought our church family responded in a fantastic way. And I know that we will continue to do so.

One other side note... today at the end of services, we prayed for 7 people that will be part of our FCC "GO" Teams for this summer. We will have people in China, Thailand, Honduras, and Cambodia this summer ( there may be more!). Again, this is a way to give to the work of the Kingdom of God. Some great stories there.... stay tuned.