The next few blog posts will be based off of some old sermons from my Grandpa’s Bible. It amazes me that the cry of the pastor’s heart was the same in the 1950′s as it is today. Or at least it should be. Revive Us O God!
The sermon reads, “Our Lord has been glorified and the great gift to the church is the Holy Ghost and the one answer to your problems and needs and my needs and that of the whole family of God throughout the whole world is the Holy Ghost.
Oh Breath of Life come sweeping through us,
Revive thy church with life and power.
O Breath of life, come, cleanse and renew us,
Equip Thy Church to meet this hour.”
Shouldn’t this be our prayer today? The remedy for the world is still the same. It hasn’t changed in these last fifty years, nor has it changed since the time of the Early Christians. What this world needs is an outpouring of the Holy Spirit. What the church needs is a revival that will change us and empower us to impact the world around us.
Our prayer should be, “O Breath of Life, move on us and revive us. Make us alive once again!” Let us call on God and give Him no rest until a mighty revival sweeps through our communities and our nation.
When I have a little free time in the office I generally take a look back at some things that have impacted my life. Years ago, my grandfather was in ministry and carried a loose-leaf Bible with sermon notes inside of it. I enjoy reading through these notes to see if I can glean anything from his words of wisdom.
In his sermon on a passage in Ezekiel, he made an insightful statement that cut me to the heart. “Remember, if you are hungry, you are healthy. Hunger is a sign of health and if you have no hunger for God you are sick. May God create in us an appetite which only Jesus can satisfy. Down, Christian, down on your knees, if you want the blessing that God will give to you.”
Are you hungry for God? If you are not hungry your spiritual life is sick. The only remedy for hunger is to take the path to blessing. On our knees is the place to find hunger. On our knees is the place to have our hunger satisfied.
In this life we have so many things competing for our affections. It is hard to keep our hearts hungry for more of God. If you find yourself in a place where you are not hungry for Him, you need healing from your spiritual sickness. God will place in you a hunger if you will only ask Him. May we hunger for the Bread of Life!
It has been a great month this month of October. It has been filled with blessings. October is when the leaves begin to change colors as fall is in full swing. As you drive through Northwest Arkansas the beauty is beyond words.
As pastors, it has been an extremely blessed season for us. We celebrate our 6th anniversary as Pastors of the greatest church on earth, Rogers First Assembly. God has been doing great things in our church body and Sonya and I are grateful that we get to lead such a wonderful group of people.
We are thankful for the way the church blessed us for Pastor’s Appreciation. All the cards, gifts and words of encouragement mean the world to us. You guys know how to make our family feel loved and appreciated. In fact, one card says it all (I think). It was given to me by my daughter, Hannah, and a couple of other kids in the church. Thanks to everyone for making our October special. Quack-a-doodle-doo! Whatever that means!
Last night, we capped off a great month with our annual Fall Fest. It was a huge success! We had more people than we have ever had. Thanks to Sonya for coordinating it and a huge thanks to all of the volunteers who worked hard making sure everything went smooth as we served people within our church as well as the many guests we had last night. RFA is an awesome group of people who loves and serves others with passion.
Sonya and I love our church family! Thanks for letting us be your pastors.
Once to every man and nation
Comes the moment to decide
In the strife of truth or falsehood
For the good or evil side.
But to every man there openeth
A high way and a low
And every man decideth
Which way his soul shall go.
-James Russell Lowell-
How often do you really study your Bible?
Most people say, “Often”, but I didn’t ask how many read the Bible. Most of us read our Bibles often but how often do we study it?
To get the most out of God’s Word we have dig into it. For instance, take a book of the Bible and try to mark off recurring themes throughout the book. You can take the book of Proverbs and highlight every time it mentions wisdom, or the fear of the Lord or the righteous, etc. Another study is to take the Gospel’s and pay close attention to every time Jesus performs a miracle, note His prayers, or even study His parables. You could also do my favorite study of all time, the Book of Acts. Get six different color highlighters or colored pencils and mark the references to the Holy Spirit (His gifts and baptism), salvations, healings, prayer, evangelism, discipleship and teaching.
In doing this it helps you to focus more on what the Bible says and helps you retain more of His Word. Studying the Word of God will enrich your life and help you to learn how to live this life.
Another great tool for study is the Treasury of Scripture Knowledge (my favorite study book). You look up a verse of scripture and it will refer you to other passages in the Bible that are of the same subject. This book helps you work through the Bible and see how God’s Word is pieced together. You can find it online here.
I challenge you to get more out of the Word of God. The Bible says to study in order to show yourself approved. Get into the Word…it will change your life!
Most Americans will remember that fateful day in our history that changed this nation. The terrorist attacks that gripped America and shed the blood of thousands of innocent lives impacted us greatly.
It’s hard to believe that it has been thirteen years since 9-11. Our prayer should be that our nation would never have to endure that kind of attack again. We should also cling to Christ just as we did after that day. We should continue to hold onto Him as we seek God’s best for our nation. May we bow our knee to Christ and may God turn the heart of our nation back to Him.
God Bless America!