Thursday, September 28, 2006

Last Sunday I had the opportunity of baptizing 3 people at Ridgeview. We have baptized 15 people at Ridgeview this year. God is doing so much around my little community and around the world. It's awesome to be a tiny part of His Kingdom. I want to spend the rest of my life being a bridge of God's love to all people so they may experience His purpose for their lives. Hmm, sounds like a good purpose statement for a church!

Friday, September 22, 2006

This morning I met with a brother in Christ for breakfast at 6:15 am. I've been meeting with him for about a month. We sit and share together for about an hour. He encourages me in the Lord. He prays for me. I pray for him. Hopefully, I encourage him as well. Jesus says, "For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them." (Matthew 18:20) I've been an education minister in charge of small group Sunday School classes and have helped implement small "home groups" at my currrent church. They are wonderful parts of a church. However, I think there is something really special about two or three gathering together for encouragement, accountability, challenge, prayer, etc. It is the ultimate "small group" and well worth one's time. I know it has been for me!

Thursday, September 14, 2006

I'm a South Carolina Gamecock fan. I don't apologize for that! I heard on the news last night that our starting QB was arrested at a bar the other night. He has been suspended until Coach Spurrier finds out more info, etc. I hate to hear this. Blake Mitchell is the team leader. Not only that, he has spend countless hours practicing, lifting weights, two-a-days, etc getting ready for the season. He may have forfeited it all this season. What a waste! We all must remember it only takes one stupid mistake for us to lose our integrity and credibility and if we lose our integrity we've lost our leadership. I am so weak so I pray God would protect me from even entering the ring of temptation. I want to finish this race He's marked out for me faithfully. With God's power, strength, protection, and help I'll get there.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Unfortunately, over the last year I've been part of several counseling sessions with couples who are about to call it quits on their marriage. It usually has entailed one spouse wanting to make it work and the other wanting to move on. It breaks my heart to see what they go through, especially when kids are involved. Although not nearly as painful as divorce, I as a pastor experience the pain of those who leave our church for one reason or another. The Bible says, "Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it (1 Cor. 12:27)." I look at each person at Ridgeview church as a family member in Christ. When they leave, for whatever reason, I experience loss. I really care! I think the church can and should be a model for those who look at us. When problems, disagreements, misunderstandings, etc arise, instead of bolting for the door and checking out one of the other hundreds of churches around, we work through it. I believe Christ would be pleased with that.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Our prayer series has begun this past Sunday at Ridgeview and we have begun coordinating our church with a concentrated effort of prayer called "God's Power." How awesome it was to see after church our people breaking into different prayer groups such as praying for families, praying for the staff (I need it!), prayer triplets that pray for those who need Christ, spiritual warfare prayer groups, and even having our children pray for our church. May we all, including myself, be people who don't just talk about prayer, but do it!

Friday, September 08, 2006

This Sunday I will beginning a new message series entitled, "Prayer: God's power for your life." The title may be somewhat deceiving; it's not about getting what I want from God. It's about returning us to what prayer should start with and that is relationship. I find it incredible that God wants to hear from me. I also find it equally amazing that God wants me to hear from Him. I am not saying that petitionary prayer isn't important. I just believe that relational prayer must be first before I ask anything of God because in relationship He shapes my wants, my desires and they become His desires. That is praying the will of God, and those prayers are always answered.