Thursday, June 30, 2011

My Great Loves

Nectar of the gods
Without a doubt my greatest love is the Lord.  I take seriously the age-old commandment to love the Lord with all of my heart, soul, mind, and strength.  But as I celebrate a few milestones I want to express a few of my more "earthly" loves.

No...I'm not writing a post about coffee and Mountain Dew :)

June 23, 2011
My first thoughts go to my sweet bride.  What would I do without her?  She is to my heart what air is to my lungs.  In a few weeks we will celebrate 16 years of marriage.  I do not know where the time has gone but I know how the time has gone.  Joyfully.  Peacefully.  Gratefully.  And blessed.

Easter 2011

Then of course there are my precious children.  I take the task of being a Godly father more seriously with each fleeting day.  With my son's 7th birthday party this weekend I can see my opportunities to "raise them up" flashing before my eyes.  No doubt about it.  I would die for them.  But I'd rather die to myself and live for them.

My other great love is Emmanuel Baptist Church.  Last week I celebrated my 9th anniversary as senior pastor.  And my niece's 15th birthday party last weekend reminded me that we've been at EBC for a total of nearly 15 years. 

Emmanuel Baptist Church
It's a long story...but it was her birth that brought us to Blackshear for a visit.  That night in the summer of 1996 we came to this dear city to have supper with a young pastor and his wife, Don and Sonny Hattaway.  I had no idea we were fellowshipping with a man who would become my pastor, my boss, my Bible teacher, my predecessor, and one of the dearest friends I would ever have.  And little did I know that a quick dinner at Shoney's in Waycross, GA would lead me to be a part of the greatest fellowship of believers in the world.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Family Worship Week

Our 2nd annual "Family Worship Week" begins this Sunday morning.  To help folks keep up with all the fun and activities, we've set up a brand new blog.  Stop by for all the latest news.

Mark this page as one of your favorites, at least for the next week and a half!

We'll be posting daily devotionals, videos, coloring sheets, activities, and announcements related to EBC's Family Worship Week.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Lord, You're Holy

Lord, You're Holy from ebchurch on Vimeo.

My favorite soloist sings with my favorite choir.  I am a blessed husband and pastor :)

Thursday, June 2, 2011

My Weekend

I am excited and challenged by the preaching opportunities before me this weekend.

Sunday morning at EBC we are continuing our Sunday series through the gospel according to Mark. I have really enjoyed this series as Mark portrays Jesus is the Son of God and the servant of God’s people. In our 15th lesson we will examine the familiar story of the resurrection of Jairus’ daughter.

As we’ve seen in this sermon series, the miracles that Mark records reveal the power and the purpose of Christ. For example, the power He manifests over sickness is symbolic of His power over sin. What He does in the natural realm is a picture of what He desires to accomplish in the supernatural realm. These accounts are certainly real literal events but they are simultaneously glorious pictures of the grace of our Lord.

This is certainly true in the case of Mark 5 and Jesus’ encounter with Jairus. The resurrection of this precious 12 year old girl is a beautiful symbol of the salvation of our children. Our children are born in need of a Savior. Paul says they are spiritually dead (Ephesians 2:1).

Jairus sought out the Savior and begged Him to come to his home because his daughter needed a touch from Jesus. As a result his faith was forever deepened, his future was forever changed and his family was forever impacted because one day this daddy brought Jesus home to raise his daughter from the dead.

What kind of commitment did it take to see his little girl raised from death to life?

What barriers did Jairus have to overcome in order to see Christ do a miraculous work of grace in his home?

Who were Jairus’ biggest critics, skeptics, and scoffers?

We will examine each of these questions on Sunday morning. As a father of 3 young children I am challenged by Jairus’ example. He serves as a Biblical role model of doing “whatever it takes” to see Jesus do a work in my kids’ lives. I am excited to study his commitment to his little girl and to his big God.

Pastor John Darsey
On Sunday night, I am honored to preach the installation service for a dear friend of mine. Pastor John Darsey has ably served First Baptist in Hazlehurst for over 6 years. Recently, he has accepted the senior pastorate at Centennial Baptist Church in Rutledge, GA. This is a dynamic church of believers and John is going to do a tremendous job there.

This Sunday is John’s first official day as their pastor. The evening service will feature an official installation service, laying on of hands, etc. It will be a privilege of mine to be in this great church and preach in honor of my friend and in honor of our Lord.

I don’t like to be gone from EBC very often on Sundays. In fact, I’ve preached 18 of the last 20 messages in the EBC pulpit and was present to hear 1 of the other 2. But I am delighted to be invited to preach at Centennial this Sunday evening. Pray for me as I travel and for John as he begins an exciting new ministry in Rutledge, GA.