March 25, 2015 Leave a comment
March 25, 2015 Leave a comment
Some of you may be aware that this past week I was in Lynchburg, VA at Liberty University participating in an intensive for the degree I am working on. The trip was a long one that entailed considerable planning. I did not simply go on the trip on the spur of the moment. The decision was not a sudden spontaneous act that I thought might be a good idea one morning. Instead, a lot of preparatory work went into not only the physical trip but also the work that had to be done prior to my arrival.
Preparation was key to the success of my trip. For instance, there was great need for lodging so I reserved a hotel room no less than a month in advance. This allowed me to get a good rate as well as guarantee a hotel room. A car was also needed so one was reserved well in advance. Not only were these major things reserved but also the financing for the reservations as well as gasoline, food and other incidentals. I also had to study and otherwise prepare for the intensive in order to be successful.
My trip to Liberty is a parallel to the things Christians need to do in anticipation for the return of Christ. I Thessalonians 4:15-17 reads, “15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. 16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.”
Attention is drawn to verse seventeen where the phrase “alive and remain” points to those who have prepared for the inevitable return of Christ. The indication is that these are those that chose to put on the whole armor of God. They have cleansed their hearts and laid aside the works of the flesh. Moreover, these that seek the return of Christ have built relationships with Him by prayer, Bible reading, church attendance and the like. They wait with anticipation while doing all possible to do the will of the Father.
Matthew 24:44 admonishes its audience with the words, “Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.” Mankind is to be ready at anytime. In order to be ready preparatory things must take place. Among the very first things in getting ready to go with Jesus when He returns is to receive Him and Lord and Saviour. This is not a mere belief in His existence. Instead, it is turning away from those things that offend Him in return for a life that seeks to please the resurrected One.
There is no doubt that Christ will return and it is certain that no man knows the day or the hour. Yet it is encumbered upon all looking to His coming to get ready to go.
February 25, 2015 Leave a comment
I am currently reading A Practical Guide for Successful Church Change by Ramsey Coutta. In his work the doctor outlines his arguments for the inevitability of change within local church bodies. This change can be good or bad depending upon how change is presented by the leadership and how it is received by those who may or may not embrace the change. Suffice it to say that not only are there changes in the local Houses of Worship but also there comes changes in communities, families and individuals. Change is a thing that will happen either by reason of prompting or by natural course of action. Either way there will be change and that change will come.
Now, it might as well be said that I am not expert on change. However after having been on this Earth for more than five decades I can say with certain confidence that change is inevitable. Take, for instance, the young babe born just a few days ago. A number of changes have already taken place. For instance the babe is no longer protected by the womb of his mother. Instead of being fed through the umbilical cord the child must be fed by mouth. The change of growth is persistent and leads to a lifetime of changes. As such we can be certain that change will come in this life. Change is inevitable and should often be embraced.
The point of this message is to encourage all that are facing change with at least some trepidation. Some are changing marital status while others may have lost a loved one to death. Some are walking into new jobs while others are at the threshold of retirement. Some are moving to a land in which they have never been while others are merely changing local addresses. Either way there is change coming and as a rule change serves only to strengthen that which is already in us. Do not be afraid to embrace change as nothing ever remains the same except God who is immutable. Even as I pen these words things are changing all around me to include the things that are happening to propel me into the future. So go ahead and change. Let God uphold you as you walk toward and into your destiny of change.
Heavenly Father, first I thank you for giving me this forum to be an encouragement to your people. I also ask that you comfort those who are facing change with anxiety and grave concern. Please allow them to rest in and trust You as you have their best interest at heart. Thank you for changing not only me but also all those that have chosen to serve you as that was the best change we could have made. We love you Lord and thank You for making positive changes in our lives.
February 23, 2015 Leave a comment
If I told you she was a whore would you still want her
If I told you she was an escort would you still love her
What if I told you she had a proclivity to pursue promiscuity
For the purpose of adultery at the expense of her purity?
Let me tell you her story
She woke up that morning and sold herself into prostitution
Nothing new to her just another day to pursue her addiction
Daddy wasn’t around so all she wants is someone’s attention
Wishing, seeking, hoping that she’ll capture a man’s affection
So he pulled over the car and rolled down the window
He told her to get in…he’d find a place for them to go
Her body said yes but her heart screamed NO
She silenced that voice she just wanted that dough
She never felt so alone and felt as cold as the snow
How could she do anything else it’s all that she would know
Never thought she’d stoop so low she felt stuck like a stone
Underneath the ground like a pile of dead and rotting bones
If I told you she was a whore would you still want her
If I told you she was an escort would you still love her
He woke up that morning and realized she wasn’t in bed
How could she be missing? Was she kidnapped or is she dead?
He put his clothes on and started driving around town
Checking every neighborhood searching like frantic bloodhound
He didn’t bother calling the cops because he had a sinking suspicion
That his wife had gone back to giving her body up for sexual exploitation
Among men who would use their money to abuse her again
Nothing’s changed since he first met her she’s the same now as she was then
There she was again where he found her when this all began
same spot same time another day another dollar for her
As she worshiped at the altar of pleasure with other adulterers
And to his horror he saw the man approach her like a predator & stalker ready to use that dollar to make his offer for her dishonor and do what was improper like a lamb led to slaughter
He had a moment to think about what he would do next
He could divorce her and leave her and she would be his ex
This was all her doing so he wouldn’t have to pay alimony checks
No-fault-divorce she exchanged monogamy for sex, adultery the cause divorce could be the effect
This husband being rich in mercy decided He would redeem his broken wife
He had made his decision and didn’t care if it cost him his whole life
He would pursue this woman until the end regardless of all the strife he would have to endure to see his wife made pure
He would pull her out of manure he would fight to see her mature
Into the beautiful classy woman made whole and perfectly secure
In her identity as a wife who’s had the filth of her adultery
washed away by the grace of her husband who loved her perfectly until the end
And so He got out of the car and stepped toward the street corner
He approached his wife’s pimp it was hell this was torture
The pimp demanded a price to be paid to have his wife back
His wife would cost him everything the choice was black and white, white and black
He sold all that he had, emptied the bank accounts, & cashed in the 401K
It was financial suicide, and his wallet screamed mayday
But there was simply no price this husband wasn’t willing to pay
He handed the man what was owed and bought her back that same day
She couldn’t look him in the eye but He grabbed her hand and they walked away
Her heart hammered and she was scared that he would never forgive her
They walked through the door and she couldn’t hold it back any more
And the tears began to pour, she fell to the floor and the wailing became desperate roars
Of a woman broken and torn beaten and worn looking to be restored
By the man who swore that he would move forward for richer or for poorer
Despite the fact that she was indeed a whore
She expected his anger she expected his hate
How could He love her in this desperate state?
He picked her face up from the puddle of snot and tears
He looked her in the eye and saw her internal fears
He could smell men’s cologne, sweat, and last nights beers
And he said one sentence that made everything clear
It is finished.
He saw her as spotless and unblemished
She was His forever she would never be punished
All pain All sorrow was completely extinguished
Beneath the gaze of her Husband whose love was relentless
And If I told you she was a whore would you still want her
And If I told you she was an escort would you still love her
If I told Him she was a whore He would still want her
If I told Him she was an escort He would still love her
You see this story is true because it’s about me and you
Let me tell you the Good News about Christ and His Boo
His Boo is the church and she’s not perfect she’s unfaithful
Though He paid the price for her sin she’s faithfully ungrateful
Known for leaving Christ and walking in betrayal
Satisfied with lesser pleasures at the expense of the True Treasure
That Treasure being Christ and His presence in her life
Always looking for a happiness that could only be found in her maker
Ever wonder why you have that constant aching and longing?
I’m sure you’re familiar with the feeling, it’s that part of you thats dying and decaying
As you pursue everything but the King and as you do you find yourself bleeding and hemorrhaging internally, wishing and seeking,hoping and craving for the one thing that will satisfy your aching
Shhhhh… Come all who are weary and heavy laden
No need to go alone carrying that heavy burden
That One Thing You need is Jesus The King
He’s been Waiting
No need to Hide
You’re His Bride
February 11, 2015 Leave a comment
First and foremost I would like to thank all who follow me as I seek to use my pen to draw attention to issues of the day juxtaposed with biblical ideas. Those of you who read regularly realize that I am not simply writing as a way to make political statements rather part of my goal is to challenge Christians to stand for the Word of God and be Christians. There are so many attacks on Christendom that standing sometimes becomes a challenge yet the Christian should be encouraged to know that the remnant in which he sits is part of the larger Church.
Now, many of you may know that I am a fan of academia. This is the case because I firmly believe that if one is to be successful at his craft there must be some learning and grooming. Many of you know that I recently completed an internship at Huguely Hospital in Fort Worth, TX as I reported weekly on the program and its impact. Now I am set to start a chaplaincy residency. God has been gracious and doors are opening for me to that end. I will soon have choices of what program I want to enter. Yes, God has been very gracious to me! With this it should be also known that I have been accepted into Liberty University’s Doctorate of Ministry program concentrating on Evangelism and Church planting.
Working these two programs contemporaneously will be a tremendous challenge and a challenge I look forward to. With that said I am not sure how I will continue working on my blogging. No, there will be no laying it to the side; I am just not sure if I should do series as I did with the study on Deuteronomy, highlight points of my residency or take totally different courses. I tell you what, if you have any suggestions please reply to this article. While no promise will be made to that end I would love to hear your viewpoints.
One final thing; I will be a little transparent in saying that the past few years have been quite a financial struggle for me. There are reasons that I will not get to in this forum yet you can be sure that the difficulties I have endured have nothing to do with malfeasance on my part or anything else nefarious. With that I ask that all that willing and able to share http://www.gofundme.com/workingondestiny as I will keep it up for just another week if I get no responses. Either way I continue in thanking all who support me by reading, responding and sharing the words I pen.
February 11, 2015 Leave a comment
Originally posted on preachercarter:
This article was written a few months ago but still has much bearing today.
Looking at Christianity today one would be inclined to think that Christianity and political correctness are one in the same. What is going on in the political world seems to be making its way into the church world. This often comes at the expense of the Gospel and despite the godly traditions that have been handed down over many generations. Yet the very idea of political correctness seems to not only be permeating the church at large but the many Christians that make up the church.
Let’s, take a look at one example of political correctness. There are some fully persuaded that telling “white lies” is acceptable depending upon the circumstances upon which the lies are told. This practice is often found in schools by re-writing history and greatly in the political…
View original 369 more words
February 4, 2015 1 Comment
Fighting wars is no new thing. Fighting has been going on from the time Cain killed Abel so it comes as no surprise that man has sought to kill fellow man stemming from jealously and fear. Such was the case during the Crusades beginning in 1095 wherein Catholicism sought to defend itself against the ever increasing stronghold of Islam. The initial loss to Catholicism caused the determined Muslims to fight even more for that they construed to be a “holy war.” That fight has been going on from that time to this with the idea that Islam should be the world religion and those that do not adhere, even different thinking Muslims, need to suffer the fate of death by the hands of those that fight in this jihad.
There have been many instances of late wherein Islamic terrorists have committed acts of violence not only in the Middle East but also in Canada, Australia and the United States. One of the most horrific acts was reported just yesterday. The report is that a Jordanian pilot was burned alive by Islamic jihadist. These Islamist, calling themselves ISIS, have no regard for human life. There is no respect for opposing viewpoints. Their holy war is just another means of silencing those that do not give in to Islam and yet our President refuses to publically admit that the enemy the world is fighting is a war against Islamist seeking to kill the rest of us. There is definitely a crusade going on yet there is another crusade that many will not engage in.
Christians are also called to a holy war however that war is not to seek out and kill those that disagree with us. Instead the Christian is called to a jihad of sorts. Now, this is not to say that Christianity is to give way to Islam; that is far from what is being suggested here. Instead an examination of the original idea of jihad is the Muslim idea of an inner struggle. The Arabic term has much to do with striving and has little to do with the idea of holy wars. Still the Christian would do well to understand that we are called “Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able” (Luke 13:24). With this the Christian is not to fight against a physical enemy as a way of life rather he is to work diligently in keeping the faith (II Corinthians 13:5).
It is true that many Muslims seek to tear down Christianity by any way possible. And Christians are to be determined to fight another crusade. Certainly there are times when nations must take up arms in the matter of self preservation. So must Christians lift holy hands to a Holy God in complete surrender to His will. The fact is that Islam does not recognize the spirit realm so it takes its jihad against all who are not like it. However Christendom has another crusade wherein it realizes that the fight is not against flesh and blood rather it is against principalities and powers and rulers of darkness in high places (Ephesians 6:12). The Christian crusade also involves standing to live (I Thessalonians 3:8) rather than putting forth the false idea of martyrdom. This Christian crusade means fighting for righteousness and giving even our enemies a chance at salvation.
So, while the Islamic State continues to wreak havoc the world over Christians need to maintain holiness and faithfulness to the One and only God. Fought properly the holy war of Christians can and will soften the heart of the most dedicate Muslims. With that, Christians, let us crusade not out of malice and vitriol but rather with love and compassion so that we might win some; even if some are Islamic terrorists.