God Give Us Men

These were my morning thoughts that turned into 1200 words. A brief article concerning God giving men that will preach and teach the word for his glory and the church's good… Click here to read God Give Us Men.

Sermon for a church grieving the Spartanburg serial killings

On Sunday (11/13/16) I had the opportunity to preach at a church in the upstate of South Carolina. In that church is a family who are victims of the recent murders committed by the suspected Spartanburg serial killer, Tom Kohlhepp. The pastor knew what happened in my life as a young child (you can read my story here) and he thought that I would be able to help the grieving family and church. I preached from the book of Revelation and emphasized the truth that "God is ALWAYS on the throne." After declaring that from Scripture I then explained the events in my life which remind me that God can always be trusted. I'll not name the church or family and I also removed the personal remarks at the end of the sermon, but if you'd like to hear the preaching portion of the sermon you can do so here: God is on the Throne

New Poem: Sowing and Reaping

This is a poem I wrote after reading a paragraph from a commentary commenting on Elijah and Elisha. Some are called to plant seeds and some will get to water, but God alone gives the increase. Neither should be jealous of the other, nor look down on the other.

“Look at how many came in
Through my great and mighty ministry!”
“Well, remember all praise goes to the Lord.
And remember, someone else planted those seeds.”

In our day almost all churches demand
That a minister’s main goal is to be successful.
But, remember what our God only demands
Is that His ministers be found faithful.

Many want to brag about their harvest
While few want to be in obscurity willing to toil.
Many want to be the ones that reap
While few are willing to systematically break up the soil.

The planter must not envy who reaps,
And the harvester must not despise who plants seeds.
But, both must remember that they are nothing
Because God alone is the one that gives the increase.

So focus on the field and the work
And not on how great will be your reward.
For we’ll all be surprised when we see
That the majority of the reward will go
To the laborers who came before you and me.

Gleanings from Stockbridge

I'm tinkering with the idea of making a short, simple monthly devotional pamphlet. I'm pretty sure this won't be anything that would impress scholars or challenge mature Christians. It is just my humble attempt to try my hand at short writing snippets. Here is a link to a PDF file that is made to print on one page, front and back, folded in half to make a one sheet four page pamphlet.
Gleanings from Stockbridge - August 2016

Exodus 15: Marah

As the children of Israel began their wilderness journey they were led by God, not Satan, to (and through) many difficulties. These difficulties did not come years after their departure from Egypt but almost immediately. Usually God does that to show us that the Church is not any better than its Head. If Christ suffered we will suffer as well.

After searching to no avail for something to satisfy them on the inside, they came (again, led by God, see Exodus 13:21) to Marah. Marah was a place of bitterness that reminds of sin. Just as there was no drop of water free from bitterness, there is no natural born man that is free from Adam’s sin. While Israel complained about the situation there was one man who did what the others did not do... Moses prayed.
In response to the prayer of Moses, God showed him a tree. The plan for this tree was to be beaten, cut down, laid flat, then lifted up and cast into the waters that it had been planted for all along. Before Israel ever came to these bitter waters, God already had a plan in place. He already had a remedy to change the very nature of the water from bitter to sweet.

Do you see the see the type? Can you say, “Yes! I see it! By faith I trust the Savior who died on the tree of Calvary and he changed my nature from a child of wrath to a son of God!” That is what the cross does. It appears foolish to those who are spiritually blind, but to us it (the preaching of the cross) is the power of God. Praise God for the plan of salvation, praise the Lord Jesus Christ for dying on the tree, and praise the Holy Spirit for changing our nature from bitter to sweet, for making us new creatures in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17).