In our midweek Bible study last night, we went through a supplementary study on creation and evolution. There were many things I wished I’d had time to cover in the Sunday messages but simply couldn’t. In preparing, I studied areas of science that fascinate me. I wanted to have some basic knowledge on everything from the fossil record to quantum physics (like I said, fascinating!). I was so blessed by the exchange. People asked questions, gave their thoughts, and generally expressed their faith in Scripture as God’s perfect Word.
This past Sunday, I began preaching in Genesis with chapter one, verse one. The message started a lengthy commitment to preaching all of the word. I don’t think I’ve ever been as satisfied by a message in all of my ministry. I had studied and prepared for about six weeks for just the first chapter of Genesis. So how was it? Exhilarating!
This week is very monumental for me. I am preparing to begin preaching through the entire Bible this Sunday morning. It has been a ministry-long dream. Since reading the autobiography of Dr. W. A. Criswell, who preached through the Scriptures over an almost eighteen year period at First Baptist Church in Dallas, it has seemed an unreachable and impossible task. I can’t tell you how much I’ve thought and prayed about this assignment.
This past Sunday, I began preaching a revival meeting for Beacon Baptist Church in Gravette, Arkansas. It’s been a real privilege and honor to do so, especially considering that the church’s Pastor has been such a great leader within our association. Bro. Dan Fagala has remained at the same church for over thirty-five years and has served in a multitude of denominational capacities. On Monday, he and I went out on Beaver Lake in his boat to fish for crappies, to no avail. We (I mean he) caught four keepers. I managed to snag one little perch which finned me fairly well before I could throw him back.On Sunday, the most spectacular thing happened. When we arrived home from the revival service Sunday afternoon and opened our garage door, our Chevy Impala had mysteriously turned sideways!
God is the great Creator of the entire universe and all that is in it. He created time and He creates every life that enters into the world. In short, God is extremely creative, so He loves creativity.
This past Sunday was perhaps the most awesome day of ministry I’ve ever experienced. Like the old gospel song says, “Heaven came down and glory filled my soul.” It wasn’t great planning, great music, or great preaching that made the day great, it was our great God visiting us in a powerful way in response to a whole lot of concerted, passionate praying.
Today, Jesus got an ovation, and it was awesome! There is something about applause during a sermon that makes me extremely uncomfortable in my own skin, yet today it was highly appropriate. The verse was Revelation 1:7, a strange text for Christmas Eve, though very appropriate when the context is compared to the night before the first Christmas.
Live peaceably with all men… Easier said than done. Everything in us wants to fly off the handle when we are inconvenienced or insulted. Paul’s words were nothing new, they had been modeled by Jesus, the Prince of Peace. Nonetheless, these words are revolutionary as far as human society is concerned. To seek peace, to refuse the right to get even, is one of the greatest accomplishments any person could ever make.
But Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish from the presence of the Lord…” -Jonah 1:3
A devoted Sunday School teacher once taught her class the story of Jonah being swallowed by the whale after running from God. She added all the flare and drama she could muster, then she proceeded to ask them what the moral of the story was. One little boy spoke up, “You can’t keep a good man down.”