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The Discipline of Purity and the Growth of the Church

Yesterday, in our Tuesday morning Men's Bible Study, we tackled one of the toughest issues of life - the discipline of purity. We're currently studying through R. Kent Hughes' book The Disciplines of a Godly Man (I'd highly recommend it to all men, more on that in a future post). Allow me to allow Hughes to introduce the topic... “Sensuality is easily the biggest obstacle to godliness among men today and is wreaking havoc in the Church. Godliness and sensuality are mutually …

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Mere Christianity

I just finished reading C. S. Lewis' Mere Christianity for the first time (I'll be perusing it again in the future). Until purchasing the book, I had little idea just how much influence the book has had on modern Christianity. I was amazed at how many conversations my copy of the book started. Once in a hospital waiting room, in my office, and in a church camp college class, I met all sorts of people who had not only read the book, but who were deeply impacted by it. In fact, …

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Ella’s First Day of Kindergarten

I've been saying for weeks now that I'm totally okay with Ella starting Kindergarten. Today was the day. We arrived in plenty of time to fight the terrible traffic mess that had gathered in front of the schools (someone thought it would be really bright to place two elementary schools right next to each other on a neighborhood street). We found a parking place and took a deep breath. Ella did great all the way into the classroom and over to her seat. Then the tough moment …

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Bowing Before Aslan

Today, I saw The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe for the first time. I have never read the fictional fantasy books by the late C. S. Lewis, but I do appreciate Lewis' other writings very much. The movie itself was, to my taste, not quite as entertaining as it could have been. What I did notice, however, was the beauty of the pictures presented in it. I watched intently, searching for details that were designed by Lewis to mimic the gospel story in …

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Don’t Blame the Church

It's apparent that there is a great departure from the church among twentysomethings. Recent studies have proven this statistically, but as a Pastor, I've watched it happen during my twelve years in ministry. It may be somewhat natural for young people becoming adults to experiment with living life their own way, including making choices about whether to continue the family tradition of church attendance or not. What is most alarming, however, is that about one in four do not …

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Angie’s Surgery

Angie was scheduled for surgery in Tulsa at 9:30 a.m. today. I set the alarm for 4:30 a.m. so that I could study and work a bit before making the two hour drive. The alarm failed and I awakened at 6:17, giving us exactly enough time to get ready and get out the door. All the way to Tulsa, I reflected on how good God was to be faithful to us in such a small detail. Angie's surgery went well - the doctor accomplished his goal of fixing some problems left behind from two …

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A Decent Joke

I rarely pass along jokes sent by email, but I really thought this one was pretty good... BUBBA AT A REVIVAL Bubba goes to the revival and listens to the preacher. After a while, the preacher asks anyone with needs to come forward and be prayed over. Bubba gets in line. When it's his turn the preacher says, " Bubba, what you want me to pray about?" Bubba says, "Preacher, I need you to pray for my hearing." So the preacher puts one finger in Bubba's ear and the other hand …

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The Greatest of These is Love

Saturday night, I had a wonderful opportunity to perform my first-ever vow renewal service for one of our Deacons and his wife. It was their fortieth anniversary and they celebrated with about a hundred friends or so in a beautiful setting. While speaking about the virtues of a godly marriage, the passage from Paul's first letter to the Corinthians about love brought me to my knees (at least in my heart that is). I suddenly realized that I've had a tendency at times to …

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Kumbaya, My Lord!

What does that mean, anyway? Actually, it means "come by here." We didn't sing Kumbaya at camp this week, but God definitely showed up! This was my first experience with church camp... ever! I'd been to Conservation Camp in elementary school and hated every minute of it. This week was vastly different. For one thing, thirty-six people got saved! As I reflect on camp, let me just share the highlights... The quiet mornings by the lake while the kids slept were great. Waking up …

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New Clothes

"I will rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels." -Isaiah 61:10Angie and I drove from our home in Beebe, Arkansas to the campus of Central Baptist College in Conway for classes. I was on a diet at the time and had a chocolate diet shake in the car. Just as we …

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