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Monday, July 28, 2008

Reflect

Well, it has been an interesting couple of weeks since my last post. I cannot believe that this is my 31st post. It is amazing how fast time flies.

Since my last post my wife and I got a Ford Explorer. It is burnt orange and it is perfect for families. We were planning on saving up for a family car, but now we have one and it is paid off. God is good!

It is quiet here in the office because every one of the Pastors on staff except for me are on a mission trip in Honduras. They are working on a church there as well as doing Vacation Bible School. Our church sent 22 people on this trip, this is quite an undertaking and your prayers would be valued as they are gone.

So with all of the Pastors gone, it leaves me to pick up the slack. Thank God, as of yet, nothing catastrophic has happened. We got through service yesterday with nothing bad happening (that I know of) and I had an awesome time bringing the sermon yesterday. I was fired up and I love each and every opportunity I ever get to speak to the congregation.

This is a pretty exciting time, we have 13 days until we have our first service in our new sanctuary, and I cannot wait. School will be starting back soon and I am excited to have all of the kids running around here again. As a youth pastor I feel it is a blessing to be so close to youth all day long. I will most likely be teaching a few Bible classes this year as well, which is also exciting. I have been working on our church website and it should be up last Saturday :) It will be up very soon, it has been edited and updated and we are waiting for one piece of information to go through the right person's hands and we will be up. Hopefully before the night is out, so that is exciting. And of course Training Camp has started and that means that football season is almost here, which is uber-exciting!

I am hopefully going training camp sometime toward the end of this week, and hopefully I will NOT be watching Brett Favre. The Bucs have 5 quarterbacks on their roster and we don't need the distraction of Favre. Me and my good friend Robert Wiley (who is also a HUGE Bucs fan) and I will be going on Thursday or Friday and I can't wait.

And in case you are wondering about the rest of my schedule for the week, we are going to Give Kids the World tonight and that is very exciting as well. I have mentioned it in previous posts, but it has been months now so I will refresh your memory.

Give Kids the World is a place where terminally ill children go for a week with their families during their last days. It is like a wonder land. Everything there is so amazing and nice, it is like Disney World with love. It is some of these kids last chance to ever have a good time. They will go to this place and be able to forget, for at least a little while, all of the things that they are going through. Tonight my wife and I are going with our church parents, the Beasleys, to work in the ice cream parlor. It is one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. It truly puts life into perspective.

To end, I want to reiterate some thing I talked about yesterday morning. I believe that one of the most important things in our Christian life is the helmet of salvation. The helmet of salvation is the hope of salvation, which is the expectation and confidence of salvation. I want for all of you, my faithful blog readers to stop and reflect on what it really means to be wearing the helmet of salvation. Think about how amazing this is. Think about how awesome this is. Think about how good God is.



Reflect.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

God will provide!

As I have mentioned in previous posts, this Summer is a pretty weird time for me. A lot of change, a lot of transition. This week is no different.

My faithful readers remember when I mentioned that the music pastor that I used to work with in South Carolina moved here to Florida. Well, he is moving to South Korea on Wednesday. My next door neighbors, who are the best neighbors a guy could ever ask for, and really good friends are moving to South Carolina.

What's behind these moves: the Polk County School Board. Jeremy has a degree in education and was teaching autistic students and because of "cutbacks" wasn't asked back next year. My next door neighbor Sonia has a flippin' Masters in education and wasn't asked back, both of them finding immediate work else where. I could use the rest of this blog to point out all of the problems with such things, but I want this blog to a positive place. But just know that I write this post with an aura of sadness surrounding me.

Last week a major occurrence happened: my wife got in a car accident. She is okay, but the car was totalled. She ran into the hitch on a pickup truck when the dude slammed on his brakes. Nothing wrong with the truck but because the frame on our car was bent the insurance company totalled our car. We are driving one car as we weigh out all of our options.

Here is the neat thing about it though: neither one of us worried about it. It is such a great feeling to know that you are a child of God and that God is going to provide for you. We actually got twice as much for the car from the insurance company as what the Kelley Blue Book value was. Now, we are just in a spot that there a lot of different roads that we could travel in this situation, and if God brought us this far we better make sure we continue to follow Him.

You wanna read some great news? Good, I am glad you do.. I am posting this blog from my office, yes my OFFICE! It is nice and it has a door on it. For those of you that don't know our church had a major fire last September and we haven't had any real place to call an office since then. But before the fire we had cubicles in our office so, once again God in His infinite wisdom provided for us, and now we have beautiful new places to work from.

The other thing is, the sanctuary and rest of the church looks amazing. I am putting a video on here that I threw together of the progress made on the construction. You may think that you have seen it but I added a lot to the end of it so this is actually its very first unveiling. I hope you enjoy it.

video

So here is the spiritual implication of this post, I think it is very obvious... God will provide. His name in this regard is Jehovah-Jireh and the first time it was used in the Bible was when Abraham was asked to sacrifice his son Isaac.

Why was he asked to do such a thing? As a test of faith, maybe. As a show of obedience, maybe. Some theologians believe that this was God's poetic way of getting people ready for Jesus. If we can feel an emotional connection to the story of Abraham and Isaac, then we will be even more ready to accept the gift that God gave us in His son Jesus Christ.

For whatever reason God asked Abe to do this, the important thing is that he was wiling to do it... with no hesitation. And because of his obedience and his faith... God provided! A ram in the thicket, and no harm came to Isaac.

So if all of my friends move away I have to know that God will still provide. If our cars are out of commission I have to know that God will provide. And if our church burns down then I have to know that God will provide.

What an amazing God we serve! Thank you Jehovah-Jireh.