Bill

About Bill

Just another guy with a blog.

Daily Devotion

“Wait patiently for the Lord. Be brave and courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the Lord.”
‭‭Psalms‬ ‭27:14‬ ‭NLT‬‬

“Wait”

We wait at stop lights,
We wait in the carpool line,
We wait for our paycheck,
We wait for retirement,
We wait for marriage,
We wait for college,
We wait for a promotion,
We wait for the kids,

As much as we hate waiting, it is not an option.
The question is…how will we wait? Will we be patient, trusting God? Or will we wait impatiently, frustratedly tapping our feet?

Waiting is an important part of our faith walk with God. Throughout the Bible we read about waiting… Abraham and Sarah had to wait for Isaac, David had to wait to become King, Noah had to wait 40 days and nights for the flood to end, Mary and Martha had to wait for Jesus 4 days.

When reading scripture, it seems waiting is a non negotiable part of life.

To wait on God means to rest with hope & confidence that regardless of the circumstances, details or difficulties we face, God is our guaranteed assurance of defense, protection, guidance and provision.

Waiting produces perseverance and patience in us. It forces us to trust God if the circumstance or situation is beyond our control. Waiting reminds us that God is in control and we are not.

“Wait patiently for the Lord. Be brave and courageous. Yes, wait patiently for the Lord.”
‭‭Psalms‬ ‭27:14‬ ‭NLT

2021-06-22T07:32:39-04:00June 22nd, 2021|

Daily Devotion

“For the whole law can be summed up in this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.””
‭‭Galatians‬ ‭5:14‬ ‭NLT‬‬

How do I love my neighbor?

1- DO what you know is RIGHT, not just what feels RIGHT. Look for opportunities to help others.
See a need? meet that need.

Always ask the question, “how can i help?” What if you went to work tomorrow and asked “How can I be more helpful What if you went home tonight and asked your spouse, “honey, how can i help”

2- Do what is RESPONSIBLE, not just what is permissible. If you are not willing to take responsibility for the outcomes of a particular decision, DON”T DO IT Somebody has to take responsibility for your irresponsibility.

3- Do what the FEW do, not just what the MASSES do. There are only a few people who are committed to personal morality as defined by God. The masses are practicing immorality. Stop taking your moral cues from the people around you and begin taking your cues from a higher authority.

2021-06-18T07:10:44-04:00June 18th, 2021|

Daily Devotion

Life can bring some pretty interesting seasons. The ebb and flow of life can be both exhilarating and exhausting. Some seasons bring happiness, increase, & relational equity.
Other seasons bring death, despair, pain…some seasons are just plain overwhelming.

Most of the time, life happens without our permission, and time goes by faster than we are able to keep up!

These are all really good reasons, in our minds, to WORRY! Are you dealing with worry today?

Worrying is similar to having goals and dreams, except its the opposite.
In goals and dreams, you SEE positive outcomes of your future. You play out all the possibilities in your head. You focus on it. You consider it, talk about it, and eventually your dream becomes vision. Vision becomes realized when you organize your life around it.

WORRY operates the same way, except it’s negative, not positive. You see the negative outcomes and possibilities. you play out all the possibilities in your head. You focus on it. You consider it, talk about it, and eventually your worry becomes vision. That vision becomes realized when you organize your life around it.

That is why I tell you not to worry about everyday life—whether you have enough food and drink, or enough clothes to wear. Isn’t life more than food, and your body more than clothing?”
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭6:25‬ ‭NLT‬‬

2021-06-17T07:54:04-04:00June 17th, 2021|

Sunday Relections

WOW! What a weekend! Here are a few thoughts:

  • Our first Sunday “back” was awesome!!!
  • Every team knocked it out of the park!
  • The vibe was fun and exciting, but I reallly missed seeing my church fam in person!
  • The worship team was 🔥
  • The altar was full of people praying and seeking Jesus at the end of the service.
  • We relocated the Kids Ministry to the cafeteria instead of the gym, and it looks GREAT!
  • It feels good to preach to real people, in person! #finally
  • After 30 days into our 40k in 40days campaign, we are sitting at 47k. We are making progress!
  • We dropped a TEASER for a documentary we’ve been filming, documenting the past year as we navigated the challenges of COVID and trying to re-open.
  • Great job, Sandy Byrne, bringing in the Kona Ice truck – that was a nice surprise and a sweet touch to the end of the day!
  • Elementary Kids Ministry will re-open on July 11, and we are looking for people like you to join the Kids team!
  • If you are interested in getting involved, let us know! 
  • The summer officially starts next week. I am so happy and excited to worship with my church family, in person, all summer!!!
2021-06-16T08:54:46-04:00June 16th, 2021|

Daily Devotion

Do you want to be successful?
Everywhere we go we are bombarded with advertisements and information about what success looks like. The kind of success everyone is chasing usually involves more money, bigger houses, nicer cars, beautiful people. But I’m not sure that’s what success really is.

Last year I was reading about a mega church pastor who lives in a $1.8M dollar house and bought his wife a new Lamborghini as an apology gift for having an emotional affair on her. She accepted the gift!
As I read about it, I thought to myself, “okay okay, different world, not my venue, not gonna judge.”
But then I learned HE CHEATED AGAIN this past year!

And I realized, it doesn’t matter how much money, wealth, fame and “success” you have, you still won’t be fulfilled by it! Even pastors & spiritual people are lured & fooled by their desire for worldly success. But the worldly view of success is a LIE.

The #verseoftheday today is Joshua 1:8
‘Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and SUCCEED in all you do. ‘

This was written thousands of years ago.
God has always been saying
Read Gods word, submit to Gods word, and you will be successful.

Success isn’t about acquiring & attaining assets, knowledge, or notoriety. It’s all about listening to God & doing what he says. It’s about knowing what God says to do and the doing it. That’s success.

2021-06-15T07:28:03-04:00June 15th, 2021|

Daily Devotion

Psalm 91:1-2
Those who live in the shelter of the Most High will find rest in the shadow of the Almighty. This I declare about the Lord:
He alone is my refuge, my place of safety; he is my God, and I trust him.

The opening verse tells us that those who “live.”
It didn’t say, “those who lived” or “who will live,” but it clearly says, “those who live” in the shelter of the Most High.
It implies an active willingness to stay within the territory of God.
It means that you can’t be living in the shelter of God while enjoying the pleasures of sin. It doesn’t work that way.
You can’t be living near to God one day and other days be sleeping with the spiritual enemy. You need to make the decision to choose to be with God, not just temporarily, but for good.
Actively seek God’s presence. Cultivate that burning desire, urge, and passion to be with God. This is a long term, committed relationship.

Question of the day:
What are the major obstacles that prevent you from “dwelling” or “living” in the shelter of the most high?

2021-06-14T09:01:12-04:00June 14th, 2021|

About Tomorrow!

First of all….THANK YOU to the dozens of people who showed up to set up and take our first stab at relaunching in Holly Springs High School! What a night!

-We spent 5 hours getting 3 trailers unloaded, cleaning everything, and learning an ALL NEW setup for church in the school.

-Service starts at 10am (5329 Cass Holt Rd. Holly Springs)

-There is Kids Ministry for preschool and younger, including infant nursery.

-There is NOT a ministry environment for K-5, however, your kids ARE invited to join us in the adult service.

-We are asking everyone to use your best judgement and choose for yourself whether or not you should wear a face mask.

-Prepare your hearts to worship!

-Kindergarten through 5th grade Kids Ministry will reopen on July 11.

-Online LiveStream Services begin on July 11 as well. (until then, enjoy some throwbacks and rebroadcasts online)

-Coffee Team will be serving coffee again on August 1.

Thank you for your patience with us as we figure out holding (portable church) services in our local High School again! We are taking it slow to ensure excellence in our execution!

Here’s a short walk through video to give you a visual picture of how the new setup looks!

2021-06-12T21:44:32-04:00June 12th, 2021|

Daily Devotion

In today’s verse of the day, there are 2 things Love is & 3 things love is not.

“Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud”
‭‭1 Corinthians‬ ‭13:4‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Jesus’ entire ministry was characterized by love. And the greatest demonstration ever of that love was the sacrifice He made for all of us.

Love IS patient – “I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his unlimited patience” (1 Timothy 1:16).

Love IS kind – Jesus healed the ear of the high priest’s servant Malchus even while being arrested, and I can’t get over how kind he is to me personally.

“Don’t you see how wonderfully kind, tolerant, and patient God is with you? Does this mean nothing to you? Can’t you see that his kindness is intended to turn you from your sin?” (Romans 2:4)

Love is NOT:
Jealous – Jesus never showed envy of someone in their strengths or their achievements.

Boastful- Jesus never displayed excessive pride or self-satisfaction in His accomplishments, possessions, or abilities.

Proud – Jesus was never guilty of an inflated sense of self, He didn’t have an odd interest in his own self-worth; nor does He possess a high or unreasonable conceit of His own excellence.

“Jesus is patient and kind. Jesus is not jealous or boastful or proud”

What about you? Could you insert your name into this scripture?

“_____is patient and kind. ______ is not jealous or boastful or proud”

🤔

2021-06-12T07:53:02-04:00June 12th, 2021|

The Diary Of A Post-Covid Pastor

I’m about to jump out of my skin with excitement for our first SUNDAY MORNING back in church in over a year!!! And as I consider the significance of this weekend and the future our church, I can’t help but to also reflect on my own personal “pain & progress” from the past year.  No doubt everyone faced challenges this past year. For me, it was both brutal & refining.

Frankly, I was emotionally, mentally and professionally unprepared for the curve balls of 2020. In the Bible, we read how the role of a pastor is a lot like that of a shepherd. (Yes, a “sheep herder” but for people) Shepherds & Pastors care for, fight for, provide for, and sacrifice for their flock.

For pastors, shepherding requires wisdom, patience, experience, spiritual depth & unwavering commitment…qualities that are somewhat lacking in my own leadership arsenal.

I’ve never really thought of myself as a shepherd before. I’ve always thought of myself as more of a sheep-dog. You know? The dog that works for the shepherd…it kinda looks and smells like a sheep, runs and barks & nips the backside of sheep who are out of line, picks fights with wolves and bears? Yea that’s me, the annoying canine sent by the chief shepherd, Jesus, to push people in the right direction and pick fights with perceived threats.

Anyway…

Over the years I got into a comfortable & manageable weekly rhythm of preaching, sermon prep, occasional funerals, lots of weddings, leading staff, long term planning, prayer, serving various people in the church, emails, etc.  But…the Covid curveball (no pun intended) threw me for a loop. I got shaken up. The whole church got turned upside down! Not only were we figuring out how to do services online, but we were also leading Oasis through the most divisive political season in my lifetime. I know we can’t please everyone, but this past year there were times I felt like we couldn’t please ANYONE. Covid separated us, and politics divided us.

There was the global pandemic. And Trump, then Biden, voting fraud, QAnon. Antifa. Racism. Protests. Cancel Culture. Riots. Insurrection at the Capitol…A stolen election…Cuties on Netflix, Gay stuff on Disney+, BLM, Marxism, and Critical Race theory… 

There were also UFO’s, Killer Hornets, 5G, and government conspiracies…

But what was the most divisive subject of the year?

MASKS!! Do we require them? What’s the governor saying? What about the WHO and the CDC? Half our people want them, half refuse to wear them. We hadn’t even started regathering yet, and people were already emailing upset or even some leaving the church because of differences of opinion about masks.  

Then came THE VACCINE….I am constantly questioned about it. Should we get it? What about the aborted fetal cells? Is it the mark of the beast? Is this prophesied in the book of Revelation?

WHEW!!! I’m exhausted just writing about all this.

I wish this past year was as easy as “just doing church online for a year,” but it wasn’t that simple. How do you shepherd people that you can’t even see? How do you keep people in community when they won’t even attend a small group? And for those who did stick with their small groups, how do you keep them from arguing over political things when they are together? If the senior sheep-dog is having a hard time leading people and navigating this stuff, how can I expect a volunteer, less-trained, small group leader to keep people focused on Jesus?

And then the economy and financial stuff. Will we have to let staff go? Will our church survive this? Should we try to build our own building? How much money should we borrow? Steel prices, wood, PVC, the cost of all building materials is skyrocketing, can we move forward in faith without being bad stewards?

I have friends who closed their churches. How much longer will we last before we have to do the same? Thank God Oasis Church is in a healthy place financially, but that didn’t prevent the fear of “what if…” 

Then the emotional health stuff, will I get a day without worry? Anxiety? Stress? Why can’t  I seem to get any quality time with Jesus? I need rest, BREATHE, Bill, Breathe!

Meanwhile, the emails and text messages are still pouring in with links to articles about racism, social justice, conspiracy theories, end-times prophecies, Candace Owens clips and Anderson Cooper interviews. People want me to read this, watch that, give my opinion on this & that.

Then that awkward email or text, or maybe even a phone call where someone would tell me they’re leaving the church…

–We just can’t do online services anymore…

–We refuse to wear a mask…

–Everyone should wear a mask!

-You should be fighting for our constitutional right to _____.

-You talk too much about racism

-You should say more about racism

-You’re just trying to be “woke”

-Why don’t you “Just teach the Bible”

-You should preach more on social justice! How come you haven’t said anything about _______ (insert latest hashtag)

-Stop being a social justice warrior!

-Why don’t you preach on the END TIMES?

-We’ll come back when you ______ (insert personal preference)

The conversations were often, “why can’t we just have church outside, maybe at a park somewhere? Or we can do drive-in church? We can meet at a random building somewhere else on a different night of the week.” When we finally started having services on a Thursday night, most of the people who were demanding we do it only showed up once or twice. I guess they just wanted the option to attend church, but they weren’t actually committed to being there.

If I have certainty about anything after this past year, it’s this:

#1 – EVERYONE NEEDS GRACE. including me.I’m a flawed, imperfect sheep-dog doing the best I can with my severe limitations. I’m not a political scientist, I’m not an immunologist, I’m not a sociologist, I can’t predict the future, and I need grace and prayer.  And so does everyone else. For the people who quit church this past year, I owe them grace. Even if their “reasoning” was terrible, I owe them grace. I’ll still serve them, pray for them, and talk highly about them whether or not they consider me their pastor.  

#2 – FAMILY IS PRIORITY.  My family means everything to me. My wife is amazing, she was a refuge this year and our home was a place of safety. As a pastor, I’ve come to learn that everyone is alway shopping me – as soon as I don’t meet their expectations, they shop elsewhere. But my family is not shopping. If everyone else walks away, they are still waiting with open arms and unconditional acceptance. Jennifer was my QuaranQueen. Aubrey was my quaranTEEN. And Elijah was my QuarINFANT. LOL 

#3 – THE CHURCH BELONGS TO JESUS, not me. He already died for it, so I don’t have to. People come and go, culture changes, society is constantly shifting, but JESUS is the same yesterday, today and forever.

People have asked, are you excited about returning to the school this Sunday?! Of course I am. But I’m not naive enough to think that everything is gonna be like it once was, because it’s not. Everything has changed, including ME. I’m different after this past year. The people of Oasis are different after this past year. Our church will be different, and that’s okay. 

I used to say “the best is yet to come” a lot because it was a trending phrase in church circles. But I recently heard a preacher say, “the best already came, and his name is Jesus.” I agree with that. The best has already come, and the best is with us. I’m not looking forward to a better future anymore. I’m looking to Jesus. He’s the better everything. And He’s already with us.

I’m excited to return to in person services this Sunday and worship JESUS. I’m excited to see who’s still with us. I’m excited to rebuild a church that is ALL ABOUT JESUS.

For me, this Sunday is so much more than a chance to attend a service- it’s a day of redemption & restoration. It’s a day where God gives back everything that was taken away. He proves his faithfulness through the storm. In Joel 2, God promises to RESTORE everything the locusts had stripped away. Similarly, I think this Sunday is a Joel 2 moment. The pruning is over, Spring is here! God is redeeming & restoring.

Join Us Sunday!

2021-06-12T21:32:20-04:00June 11th, 2021|

Daily Devotion

“For I have given rest to the weary and joy to the sorrowing.”
‭‭Jeremiah‬ ‭31:25‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Are you weary? Unfulfilled?

Your soul longs to be satisfied – and the only thing that can fulfill you is the one who made you. If you are trying to find fulfillment in the things of this world, it will fall short & it will leave you feeling an ache, unrest & dissatisfaction in the deepest part of you.

A dissatisfied soul is something this world cannot fix. Only God can satisfy the hunger and longings in you. He brings joy where there is sorrow, peace where there is chaos, & calm where there is distress.

He satisfies the soul.

2021-06-10T07:20:01-04:00June 10th, 2021|

Daily Devotion

Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.
Psalms 100:4‭-‬5 NIV

Entering gates, walking into the courts, praising his name…This is something you would do before a King. This is how you would honor and celebrate someone who meant a lot to you. This might be how you would publicly recognize an influential celebrity or a hero.

Why do we do this for the Lord? Because He is good. He has loved us and will continue to love us forever. His faithfulness has no end, it has repeated itself throughout all generations.

Every generation experiences a move of God. They all look & feel different, But the common denominator is God pouring out his love on people who desperately need of a Savior

This love compels us to be grateful, to celebrate, to honor him, and to worship Him.

2021-06-09T06:43:26-04:00June 9th, 2021|

Daily Devotion

The entire human race has a hard heart toward the things of God. Selfishness rules our land. Our primary desires are bent toward self satisfaction, sexual gratification, wealth, acceptance & fame.

Especially this month, you’ll see pride, boastfulness, & an outright mockery of God. Even “Christians” are now joining the parades of people, proud & unashamed of their sin, thumbing it in Gods face.

It’s not just one group or subculture that defies God, ALL of humanity has a propensity towards arrogance, disobedience, ungratefulness, and godlessness. Every person – you and me alike, was born dead in their sin and their heart is at odds with a holy God.

Thankfully, the Lord in His grace, promised to give us a new heart. He promises to purify our heart and cleanse our soul.

The #verseoftheday prophecies a future heart exchange –
“And I will give you a new heart, and I will put a new spirit in you. I will take out your stony, stubborn heart and give you a tender, responsive heart.”
‭‭Ezekiel‬ ‭36:26‬ ‭NLT‬‬

I need a new heart
You need a new heart
We all need Jesus.

2021-06-07T07:43:31-04:00June 7th, 2021|

Daily Devotion

The #verseoftheday today is 2 Corinthians 9:8

“And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.”

Christians are encouraged to be generous in our giving because cheerful generosity is something that pleases the heart of God. Our generosity is rooted in the heart of a generous God.

His grace was a “free gift” to all of us, but it was a deeply personal sacrifice of generosity on the part of God. After all, the most famous verse in the Bible says “for God so loved the world that he GAVE…”

There is a principle from God that is found all throughout His Word. The principle of sowing and reaping.
-Proverbs says that a generous person will prosper and whoever refreshes others will also be refreshed himself.
-Job reminds us that those who plant trouble and cultivate evil will harvest the same.
-Jesus gave us the common cliché – a man will reap what he sows”

In today’s verse, Paul is discussing the wisdom of generosity, in contrast with the folly of selfishness. He says “God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.” Essentially, he is saying you can’t outgive God. God will always resupply and bless you so that you can continue being a generous person.

2021-06-06T08:05:18-04:00June 6th, 2021|

Daily Devotion

“So don’t worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will bring its own worries. Today’s trouble is enough for today.”
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭6:34‬ ‭NLT‬‬

I’ve heard this verse misinterpreted to support the idea that you should never make plans. Years ago, I sent invitations for a youth ministry event I was hosting, and one married couple told me, “because we take Matthew 6:34 seriously, we never make plans to do anything and we cannot RSVP for this event“

To which I responded, “Well I take Luke 14 seriously & I throw banquets and I’ll even invite even the odd, weird people who have the lamest excuses not to attend.” 😂

Planning ahead and worrying are different things. Luke 6:34 is not an anti-planning verse, it’s about WORRY. Most of us have dealt with worry at some point in our lives. We lay in bed with that nagging concern about the future. We spend the day troubled about some rising conflict. It may be financial doubt about paying bills, or something unpredictable at work. Whatever it is, Jesus wants us to let go of our anxiety. We have to live in the moment. There are too many opportunities we could miss today by worrying about what might happen tomorrow.

Br present.
Enjoy today.
Turn off the back burner.
Disconnect from tomorrows worries

2021-06-05T08:37:09-04:00June 5th, 2021|

Daily Devotion

“Those who control their tongue will have a long life; opening your mouth can ruin everything.”
‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭13:3‬ ‭NLT‬‬

Did you know…
A chameleons tongue is TWICE the size of its body?
A blue whale’s tongue is the same weight as a pickup truck!
The human tongue only weighs 30 oz…

The human tongue is small but it is disproportionately powerful. There is POWER in your words.

Consider the following:

“I love you”
“You are awesome”
“Daddy loves you”
“You mean the world to me”
“Dang, you are so hot! Whew!”

OR

“I can’t stand you”
“You make me sick”
“I hate hearing your voice”
“ you are so stupid “

The tongue is POWERFUL. �
It’s not “just a phrase”, “just an opinion,” “just something i said out of emotion”

Words matter.
A cigarette butt can lead to a forest fire.
uncontrolled comments can impact a child well into their 30s.

The little things you say with your tongue can make an impact, good or bad.

You must control your tongue.
YOUR WORDS MATTER.

2021-06-04T08:29:59-04:00June 4th, 2021|

Daily Devotion

When you sit down with a friend, you are totally comfortable with him. You don’t have to prove yourself to you friends.
You can just rest because you’re already accepted.

You can have dinner with a friend and you do not have to hope for acceptance or love, because they’re already your friend!
You can enjoy some coffee with no pressure, & talk about whatever comes up, it’s great! Friendship is awesome because you already accept one another, now your time together can be focused on growing in your relationship with each other.

The #verseoftheday is Revelation 3:20,
“Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.”
‭‭
God is pursuing us.
We don’t have to go find him, because he came to find us!

God is already our friend!
He’s knocking at the door.
He’s already accepted you, will you accept him?

All the way back into Old Testament times we have a picture of God as a shepherd who is searching for those whom he cares for, even in bad weather. Even in tough times. Even when we have turned to go the opposite direction.

We are not shut out from the kingdom of heaven.

God pursues,
God finds,
God knocks.

All we have to do is open the door & invite Him in.

2021-06-03T07:40:14-04:00June 3rd, 2021|

Daily Devotion

“And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”
‭‭Colossians‬ ‭3:17‬ ‭NIV‬‬

Everything that we “do” happens in two primary ways, 1) WORDS and/or 2) DEEDS. One is not better than the other, they’re different but equally important, and they should also be congruent with one another and reflect the same heart & intentions.

If we are going to use our words to call Jesus “Lord,” then we should be consistent in both what we say with our words and what we do with our actions. Remember, Jesus had a nick-name for people who said one thing and did another…”hypocrites.”

Today’s verse also tells us to do “all” or “everything “ in Jesus name.
This means to speak & behave in a way that reflects His character and is consistent with His nature.

We owe everything to God. He created us & formed us with his words & hands. He also has blessed us with every good thing. He saved us & set us apart. The least we can do is honor him with our words & our deeds.

2021-06-02T07:40:25-04:00June 2nd, 2021|

Daily Devotion

Some people are trapped in sin. They’re intimidated by their own habits & cannot find a way to win against temptation.

How do you deal with temptation?

#1 – Memorize and Quote Scripture

Break out God’s word and use it on the devil! Memorize scripture, Quote scripture.

Jesus did this in Matthew 4 when he was being tempted by the devil. He reached into his arsenal & pulled out scripture. This was his weapon when being tempted. And it is our best weapon when facing temptation

Some say, wow that seems kind of odd, I don’t wanna be one of the scripture quoting, devil fighting kinds of Christians” Okay then you’ll just keep falling for the same tricks and keep swimming in your sin hoping you don’t suffer the consequences while faking the christian life. 🤷‍♂️

#2 – FIGHT
You have a part in overcoming temptation. YOU have to pray
YOU have to read your Bible
YOU have to get to church
YOU have to submit yourself to God
YOU have to resist
YOU have to put forth the effort
Temptation comes my way all the time. When I win against temptation, it’s because I put up a fight!

#3 -Keep AWAY.

You won’t lose weight by hanging out at Dunkin Donuts. You won’t get sexually pure watching sex scenes on Netflix. You won’t break free from an addiction standing in line at the ABC store. You won’t gain freedom by walking right into cage. It amazes me how often people complain about their sin habits, yet choose to keep returning to the cage. It’s worse than the overweight person who complains about being fat, yet chooses to eat sheet cake every day.

“No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide A WAY OUT so that you can endure it.”

1 Corinthians 10:13

2021-06-01T07:57:25-04:00June 1st, 2021|

Daily Devotion


Part of the role of a pastor includes officiating funerals on occasion. This was intimidating for me in the beginning because, in my early life, funerals made me a little uncomfortable.

At one of the first funerals I ever attended, the casket was open. I didn’t really want to go look at the person laying there, but since I was a new pastor, I thought it would be disrespectful if I didn’t. So I gathered my courage and went up to the casket to take an obligatory peek at the body.
When I walked up to the casket one of the family members said “Doesn’t he look nice”? My gut response under my breath was “nope, he looks dead.”
BUT because I’m a pastor and all, I just said, “yes…nice…suit. Did he pick that out?”

Then I thought, when I’m dead, is that what I’d want? People coming up to my casket saying “he looks nice?” No, that’s not what I want at all. What would I want people to say about me in that situation?…
I want people to say “HEY, LOOK! HE’S MOVING!”

…because I don’t want to die.

But the reality is every single person in this world is going to die. Everything that lives, dies. I’ll die. You’ll die. The whole earth & everything in it will eventually pass away.

One thing will never die, Gods love. Gods love is stronger than sin, death, the grave & Hell. Gods love reaches as high as the heavens & lower than any valley. His love existed before the creation of all things & will carry on for eternity.

His love endures forever.

“Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever.”
‭‭Psalms‬ ‭107:1‬ ‭NIV

2021-05-31T08:08:41-04:00May 31st, 2021|

Daily Devotion

“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep.”
‭‭John‬ ‭10:11‬ ‭NIV‬‬

As a preacher, It’s easy to read a passage like this & then immediately begin to break down the characteristics of sheep. But for today, let’s consider one characteristic of the shepherd.

COMPASSION.
Jesus’ heart is moved with compassion for you. 

Throughout the Old Testament, Ezekiel 34:10, Jeremiah 10:21, Zechariah 10:3, 
God never became angry at sheep, he became angry at shepherds who were supposed to care for the sheep.

God becomes frustrated with priests, zealots, and other spiritual leaders…but never the sheep.

Jesus is the chief shepherd.
I’m an under-shepherd. (Or maybe I’m more like a sheep dog 🐕 ) This means, I am right in the cross-heirs of Gods compassion for people who are suffering.

I sat in a hospital with a lady who has Lukemia…

I prayed with someone the other day who is on the brink of divorce.

I had a meeting with a lady recently who is on the other side of divorce and starting to date men again, she’s plagued with fear, confusion, uncertainty.

I’ve spoken with young people who are dealing with identity issues, trying to figure who they are in Christ.

I have talked to numerous men & women who are wrestling with depression & suicide.

I’ve prayed with ladies who have been raped and they still have that icky, unclean feeling from being sinned against. They still don’t trust. Still haven’t healed.

I’ve been the first person to arrive after tragedy has struck, I’ve been there when shock sets in, I’ve been there when there were no words, only silence, grief, & pain.

I took a long walk with a guy who wants to be free from a porn addiction, he & his wife both know it’s a problem, but he can’t shake it.

I feel the weight of it as a pastor. I pray for you. I care for you. I’ve wept just thinking about some of the pain that people are dealing with. But there is no way I could ever come close to having the same compassion as Jesus.

2021-05-30T08:47:15-04:00May 30th, 2021|
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