Friday, January 19, 2024

It's Our Fault

 I was recently reading through a study in Romans.  It reminded me of some confusion I've had regarding several things.

I've been in church my entire life and often struggled with the concept of "missions".

Just the idea of going into a foreign country thinking we could be the deliverer of the news they so desperately needed to hear didn't seem logical if we weren't a knowledgable part of their society.

I also wondered how "fair" it was that some have never heard.

But reading through these passages in Romans again reminded me that we each will be held accountable for what we do with the amount of knowledge we have of our Savior.

It served as a reminder that those of us with MUCH knowledge and opportunity to hear and respond to the teachings of the Lord will be held to a higher level of accountability.  As a comfortable American I catch myself satisfied and not constantly troubled by a lost world that God expects me to deliver the message of salvation to.   ME!  Privilege always increases responsibility.

"In times of persecution and distress the followers of Christ have given striking evidence of His transforming power and sustaining grace, but under more favorable conditions they tend to become worldly, selfish and complacent.  God has commanded saved human beings to be the messengers of the Gospel, and we have failed."  Richard W. DeHaan

My prayer today is that God will create a burning in my soul for the lost that I cannot resist!

Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Come Let Us Adore Him

 Come Let Us Adore Him....what does that mean?

When I woke up this morning faced with a day of taking my mother-in-law to a doctor's appointment and electricians finishing work at our home, I saw this little decoration on my dresser. 

I read it, really read it and asked myself do I ADORE HIM?

We adore whatever means the most to us.

What means the most to me - is it Jesus, really?

My Christmas prayer more than ever before is that my life will show what I say I believe, what I've said 1,000 times when I sing that song...O Come Let Us Adore Him!  

Friday, May 21, 2021

season of seniors

 We're currently in a season of seniors!

We've received perhaps the largest amount of invitations to graduation parties ever, competing only with the years our own kids graduated.

These are young people just beginning to discover what God has in store for them.  An exciting season!

I'm not only surrounded by these graduating seniors but find myself in a season where all of my parents and their relatives are in their final years.  Seniors.

My schedule is full of cleaning, driving, grocery shopping, doctor appointments and deep conversation trying to fully understand what they're experiencing.

It's difficult to watch at times - they are the same smart, attractive, talented people they've always been yet they struggle daily to embrace their current season.  They speak of past days where they traveled and loved spouses deeply and felt as if they had plenty of time to discover and experience new things.  And now they can't even drive....

They have not lost their love for the Lord, I still hear their prayers for their grandchildren, other loved ones and their church, but there is no longer anyone one inviting them to participate in problem solving or new creations.  

I long to help make this senior season significant - can I make it one of their best seasons?  A fantastic finish?  Can we refuse to just let them sit and drift away?  I don't know, but I'm interested in trying!

Please, reach out to a senior today if you have the opportunity...

Monday, December 14, 2020

a different Christmas

 This will be a different Christmas for sure!  

My daughter's first baby arrived early so I had the privilege of being down in NC with her for the past week 1/2.  What a joy to see how amazing she and Jared are parenting this little one, already pointing him to Jesus!  I have loved every moment of it!

Being here also means I'm less involved then normal with Crossroads' Christmas.  I still have responsibilities but missing all the final meetings and tweaks to the plans.  Christmas was always one of my favorite ministry seasons although some of the pastor's I've worked with didn't particularly love it - ha ha!

It's always a magnificent thing to watch everything fall into place as God's hand touches our work and forms it into exactly what His will is.  None of us ever dreamed COVID would still be controlling much of what is happening around us by December, but alas it is.  Still, I see God's leading even in things like Pastor Dave's suggestion for live animals this year - and the fact that they have to be outside.  This removed all worry about COVID by wearing masks and being spread out from one another in the fresh air!

It gives everyone at Crossroads the opportunity to invite anyone they've been wanting to invite to church to stop by...even if it's just to see the animals!  Please use this opportunity to invite families, even if you don't think they'll stay for the service it may be Step #1 in getting them to Crossroads.  Meanwhile inside the Gospel of Jesus will be celebrated through beautiful song and God filled teaching! 

Everything we plan is intentional, everything pointing them to the Savior! We'll have people out with our animals in front of the church to welcome everyone and chat with them about Christ's birth - we just need you to help us get those people here!  We'll even have a camel!

Remember if you invite people with Elementary aged kids or younger, there will be children's services just for them at all of the 5:00 p.m. services - December 22, 23 & 24.  

Even in the ugliness of all the sickness, we can still safely worship and honor King Jesus while remaining a safe distance from one another! I'll be back from NC soon and hope to see you there!

Saturday, December 12, 2020

a friend named Dan

 I have a friend named Dan.  

Nearly half of my life has been spent working in ministry with him, first at a Lexington church and then at Crossroads Church.

But I've always known of him even before we met.

His reputation in the community as the top choir leader, traveling with high school choirs around the country winning top honors everywhere they went, while leading congregations in worship was very well known.

He's a guy I admire for many reasons.  He has lead me personally to understand what true worship is as I've sat in worship services under his leadership!  He's treated me respectfully as I became his boss for many years even though he was the more qualified of the two of us at times.  And the early reasons I looked up to him was based on how ugly his experience was many years ago with his Christian community involving unfaithfulness, unfair loss of his job and sin in a previous local ministry, as well as his personal battle with illness.

I know many people who disagree with one thing in their church and leave instead of staying to work it out.  No church is perfect.  He never left until now as he retires.

I've seen him remain in the Lord, searching for His will and faithfully serving as he lead us in worship!

Talent is one thing, but a lifestyle that points people to the Savior is what I long for and that's what I've seen in Dan.

As Dan retires from Crossroads, I just wanted him to know how much I look up to him and how much his dependable, talented, kind leading will be missed!!  May the Lord bless you Dan in this new season!

Friday, July 24, 2020

Events+Response = Outcome

I was reading in Jonah this morning and came across my notes from a series Pastor Dave, taught previously at Crossroads Church.

This note caught my eye and I felt it was SO applicable to what we're experiencing in our country right now.  Events+ Response = Outcome.  PROFOUND!   He went on to remind us that the only part of that equation we get to participate in or have control over is our Response!

God allows or creates the event because He knows what needs to happen in order to accomplish HIS outcome! 

I've seen a lot of disappointing responses to our current circumstances, so what do you says brothers and sisters, can we lay our opinions, our worries and our whining aside and trust God for the outcome?  Am I confused and disappointed in our current circumstance?  Of course! I had many  plans and projects that I had invested tons of times into that all got cancelled!

But, I believe fully that all God needs from me is a controlled - godly response.  And possibly to just be quiet!  Will you join me?

Friday, July 10, 2020

Fear and Trust are Opposites

God's given us today, July 10th.
How will I spend it?

If I'm scared, I am not trusting.

Fear and Trust are opposites and cannot exist at the same time.

I thought back to a recent conversation I had with a friend expressing that I was worried that it will be impossibly to even have an honest election.  I ended the conversation by saying, "but the Lord needs all of this to happen in order to fulfill his plan, so we just have to rest in Him".

As I walked away from that conversation I found myself not long afterward worrying this time about 'defunding the police departments'...

Did my worry honor the Lord?  Did it change tomorrow?  Did it demonstrate trust?

No, it instead supports a lack of trust.  AND wastes time the Lord gifted me with by allowing me to have today.  And over a period of time worry can actually shorten my life by ruining my health.

Matthew 6:27 & 34

27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?
34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

What I'm trying to be diligent about is going to prayer the minute I find myself slipping back into worry.  For me this means I need to avoid listening to news and anything that takes my eyes off of Jesus.  This refocuses my mind toward TODAY and the things that God has placed before me to care for, work on, and spend this day doing.  We have the opportunity right now to be the biggest witnesses we've ever been if we can demonstrate a calmness, a kindness and reliance on God, and refuse to become part of the frantic, endless search for answers the world is pursuing!

A watching world cannot deny God's power when they see us rest in Him instead of getting caught up in the worry frenzy around us!