Jesus loves me this I know. Debra Wants me this I know. My kids appreciate me this I know. My church encourages me this I know. My Life Group cares for me this I know. Everything else I know, I will share with you.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Really, Thank You

Over the last several weeks many of you have shared your appreciation for me as your pastor and I want to say that I am thankful, but I must admit, this church is not what it is because of me, but because of you.

Let me explain.
Four years ago Debra and I went on vacation to Idaho. That Sunday we picked a church to visit that I thought would be interesting. From the second we entered we felt welcomed and loved. They were clearly a family and made us feel right at home. And then we heard something that shocked us. They had not had a Pastor for two years and were just getting ready to vote on one.

Why was this shocking? Because they were a strong church even without a Pastor. They were still passionate about Jesus, they were still purposeful in seeing souls saved, and they were still powerful in that they loved God and each other. And while I understand the value of the Pastoral role, because they were such a strong church, they only became greater when they added their new Pastor.

The Best Churches don't have the Best Pastors, but the Best People.
When Jesus Christ is the head of the people, its a great Church.

I know that I am valued and loved by this congregation, but I know you value and love Jesus more than me.

Thank You for loving God and Thank you for loving Others.
I appreciate those of you who follow Jesus and make this church about Him.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


I was doing a study on the word Influence the other morning and came upon an amazing thought.

Websters Dictionary says that influence is a Heavenly fluid held to flow from the stars and to affect the actions of humans.

Aytos dictionary of word origins says that it is an astrological term coined in medieval Latin to describe a fluid that was given off by the stars that would affect human life.

To which the English came up with the word Influenza which was applied in the early 1900's as a flu epidemic devastated Europe. When this flu hit, they believed that the flu was caused by the stars.

Those affected by the virus believed that their lives were influenced by the stars.
That the epidemic came from the atmosphere.

I really don't care if you get a flu shot or not. at least for the flu. But I do care about whether or not our church influences our community.

We do that by being the Stars we are called to be.
Philippians 2:15 (KJV) That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world;

Jesus himself said this about the flu
Matthew 5:14-16 (KJV) Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. 15 Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

and while there are many churches that are just sick. (They have a Negative flu bug)
We want to be the kind of church that influences others in the Right way.

We want to be that light.

So today, how can you influence your home, job, school and community as they see your heavenly works, so that you give people the bug (Jesus)?

Don't be a Christian that's only influence is one of sickness or selfishness.
Share your Jesus bug with others!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Could it be a Rabbit?

I am finding that the older I get, the more I struggle with focus.
My eyes just don't seem to work the way they did when I was younger.
But its not only my eyes, my mind as well wanders way more than it did when I was 35.
Things are blurry, furry and at times fuzzy which is very dangerous.

(Now I know why old men drive so slowly)

The danger of poor sight is it effects our ability to make right decisions in life.
It causes us to rely more on feelings not facts, guessing and not God.
Add to this problem a friend who councils you who is as blind or ignorant to a situation as you are and you have a recipe for failure.

Hence Clarity has become a highly valued commodity in my life.
As a Christian, we have been gifted with three things that bring us clarity.

#1 The Holy Spirit
#2 The Holy Scriptures
#3 The Holy Man

The Holy Spirit guides us into all truth. (John 16:13, John 14:26)
The Holy Scriptures guides us with all truth. (Psalm 119:105, 130)
The Holy Man guides us to understand all truth. (Jeremiah 3:15)
This Holy Man is more than just the Pastor of your church, but the husband in your home, a father of children.

In a day when everything seems so out of focus we need men who will be led of the Spirit of God, by the Scriptures of God, to open the eyes of those without God to the truth of God.

The older I am getting, the more value I place on those things that give me clarity.
The Holy Spirit, the Holy Scriptures, and Holy Men of God who by working together stay off of rabbit trails and follow the path God has for us.

Today, My prayer is for men and women to be focused on what God's plan is for them for this day. That they may see Him clearly in the beauty of His creation, know His will through the light of His word, and love Him passionately because their eyes have beheld their God.

Monday, October 17, 2011

A Letter from Pastor A

There are a few things I noticed that I want to share with you from Sunday.

#1 We Have Awesome People
Teachers who Love their students
A Worship team that Loves their Jesus
Life Group members that Love the people
and a Congregation falling in Love with Jesus.

#2 We Have a Lot of new Faces
Some being drawn by the Love
Others being drawn by the Life
and many being drawn by the Lord.

#3 We Have an Amazing Lord.
One who forgives our sins
One who loves unconditionally
One who Lives eternally.

Its a good time to be a Lifer.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Faith is ............

This thought has been heavy on my mind as of late. As a Pastor its a daily word. I use it in my prayer time, my people time, my preparation time, and in my personal time. Yet, its not easy to define. I know that its a substance of things hoped for, and the evidence of things not seen, and by it the elders proved their belief in God. and this morning it came to me through the back door.

Faith is not Security
Helen Keller once said: "Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring adventure or nothing."

Every time I think I'm in control, circumstances remind me how silly I'm being. I can't control the outcomes of a meeting. I can't control the weather. I can't control the events of my day and I certainly can't control people. and I know I can't control God.

So maybe faith is Courage.
The courage to obey the word of God when I would rather seek whats best for me.
The courage to believe the word of God even when I would rather believe what I feel.
The courage to live the word of God even when I would rather follow the dictates of my heart.

As a human I seek security and believe comfort is best.
As a Christian I seek obedience and believe faith is best.

So this morning pray with me, God give me courage to live by faith and share with me what God is asking you to do by faith.
Let's Pray together!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011


The essence of spirituality is contained in this phrase:
complete and utter abandonment to the will of God.”
Jean-Pierre De Caussade

I have to admit, I am struggling a bit.
While I love seeing what is happening in the lives of newLife members.
      The Joy of Jesus expressed so honestly.
      The Love of Jesus exposed so openly.
      The Hope of Jesus shared so powerfully.

But there are things that still hinder us.
For years I thought it was religion, but I think that its more than that.

What do I think is standing in my way? Fear.
Fear of what I do not know, understand, or control. (Religion makes me feel free)

While I desire freedom in my life through Christ, I don't really know what that looks like and while I think that I am willing to give myself totally to the will of God, my fear keeps me back.

What about you? What is keeping you from complete and utter abandonment to God's will?

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

A Letter from PRob to newLife

Hey newLife there are 3 things I want to share with you today.

1. Celebrating Freedom in Jesus Christ never gets old. I love seeing people in our church who want to be there because they are free in Christ and you see it in their enthusiasm.

2. One of the men of our church who is a policeman was working with a homeless guy on Saturday night who was looking for a life change. He invited the man to church and on Sunday James J went and picked him up. Its awesome to see that our church understands that the only hope of the world is Jesus Christ!

3. For the third week in a row we have had visitors looking for a church that is real and not religious. Wow. I think that the word is getting out that we are becoming that place.