Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Lost Thunder
After years of being the "Big Dog" and the only pet in our home, thanks to the baby kitten, Gizmo has lost his thunder. A baby kitten is cute and cuddly, cries allot and needs much attention, is small and light as a feather, he's just a baby...and is getting that new child attention...So our dog looks like he might be depressed. On top of that the kitten has him on the run, he's afraid of it, I keep calling him a girl, which is better than my usual daily dose of calling him an idiot! I think I've lost my thunder a few times, moments when I wasn't sure of who I was, where my place was, and wondered if I really fit. Nothing anyone could say or do was enough to make me feel better or change the way I was thinking, I just had to work it out...Maybe I can learn a lesson from my dog!

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Stormy Winds & My Two Sons!
Last night in Jensen Beach we felt the effects of Tropical Storm Noel, rain came along with strong winds, at times I thought the tent was going to blow over. Yet, the Lord revealed Himself through His Word and by the working of the Holy Spirit. As simple as this sounds I am so thankful that God knows who we are, where we are, and how to touch our lives, if it were not for the Lord where would we be? While I was gone there was an addition to our home, a new kitten...He is so cute and crazy, one minute he's licking on my finger, the next he's trying to eat me...I've fallen in love with him already! And then there's Gizmo, our Shitzu. We've had him since our 15 year was in third grade and until today I've never actually touched him...I don't touch dogs...Period! Today I guess I felt guilty for paying so much attention to the new addition that I actually petted him a couple times and let him ride in the car with me...I'm quite confident it won't become a habit, but it stretched me to say the least!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Today's Stuff
Since August I've been traveling like a crazy man, been to Chicago, Kenya, Illinois, Ohio twice, and am presently in Jensen Beach, FL. Tonight I preach in a tent revival, last night there water in the tent, and the Lord revealed Himself in a beautiful way, I'm going home after tonight's service. Saturday I'm off to Illinois, and then home for four weeks...PTL. In all of my travels I have come to appreciate the goodness of the Lord, the protection and provision of the Lord, my wife and children, my pastor and church, and my own bed! There really is not place like home, I'm clicking my heels right now. There's also a new addition to our home, Coco, a six week old kitten, I left yesterday afternoon and he moved in shortly afterward, we haven't met but I am confident that we'll be fine. Thanks to all that read here, I'll write something good later, just wanted to stop by and say hello!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

They're Back.....
Leave for a week and what do you get when you return? Northerners, Yankees in Cadillacs and RV's, eateries stuffed to the gills with 80 year olds asking for the senior discount, telling the waitresses what to do...and Walmart, aisle filled with shopping carts and motorized wheel chairs! I suppose it's good for our economy, and on the most part they are beautiful and wonderful people, they can't drive or walk fast, but that certainly isn't a character flaw. After all, we always say the South is going to rise again, who knew it would as the result of Yankees who couldn't stand the cold so they came to the kitchen! From one Yankee to 50,000...Welcome Home...We really are glad you're here!

Friday, October 19, 2007

Proclaiming Our Passion
I read an article today about blogging, it suggested that we should blog about the things we are passionate about which really got me thinking, what am I passionate about? Starbucks is an addiction for me, I love Caffe Mocha with a shot of vanille, Duece De Leche...when they've got it, and an occasional Caramel Macchiato. Wherever I am I do my best to eat my way through that town or city, Tony Paco's in Toledo, Webber Grill in Chicago, Ach & Lou's in Aurora, The Columbia in Tampa, Jenny's Diner in list is endless and yes, I am overweight...170 lbs today! But what am I passionate about? I love Jesus, He is everything to me and I want to know Him, love Him, reflect Him, and to please Him. I have an awesome family, a wife of 20 years, two phenomenal daughters, a mother who continues to be amazing, a sister that I'm quite proud of, Im quite passionate about them. Ministry, I'll celebrate 29 years of ministry this July, 26 of them I have been full time either as a evangelist or pastor. I love being in ministry, love church, people and pastoral families...God has given me the choice occupation, it hasn't always been easy or pleasant, but it is fulfilling and I would never want to do anything else. And lastly, writing, I love to write, to express my thoughts, to share my feelings, to release the voice within me. I'm not always confident that I'm doing it well, I'm just happy to do it. So from this point on, I'm going to boldy proclaim my passion. What are you passionate about? What are you doing to make it work for you? Can I join you in the journey?
I'm on my way! The reservationist is on hold, but we are patiently waiting, Dali Chicken is my earnest quest!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Adjust The Settings!

We have a calendar on our church web site that shares all the monthly activities of our church. It's not a fancy thing, quite basic in nature, but it allows us to share what we do and for others to participate in which ever activities interest them. Last week I just happened to venture by our web site and check the schedule, you won't believe the shock that over took me when I noticed that all of my entries simply read: "Busy", the times were correct, but it just said "Busy!" I wasn't sure how that happened and was hoping that no one else had noticed, or at least no one I knew...well, you know it couldn't be that easy, someone stopped by my office today and mentioned it...I was horrified, well, bothered to say the least.
Quickly I emailed our web host and asked how to fix this error of mine, what is it that I need to to, after a brief response from him I went to my calendar provider and low and behold, the checking of one box opened my calendar to the whole world...I just needed to adjust the setting.
There's a spiritual lesson to be learned here, often in life we see things as blurred and out of sync, life as we know it is out of adjustment and we don't know what to do. If you're like me, and you are, we look for all sorts of things to correct our situations, we call people, email them, ask their advise, all the while hoping for some complex answer to solve our simple issue...We need to check the settings!
The settings are those places in our lives where God has made deposits, the entrance points of the Holy Spirit where He has touched us, places that in times past have been rearranged by the Lord to improve our serve. Settings are those areas the Word of God speaks to directly in us, things we don't have to pray about, we just have to do them. Isn't it amazing how we can avoid the settings and ask God to move in places He's already in, to speak about things He's already addressed? We get so busy in life that we look for something quick and easy, or we believe our situation is so unique that we overlook the obvious...check the settings!
When I was a new convert my mother talked about my shine, the glow of the Lord in my new found relationship with Him. As I learned to walk with Him I quickly found out that Christianity doesn't remove humanity, and that I continuously needed to adjust my shine so that I could continue to reflect the glory of the Lord...Sometimes we just need to be tweaked!

Habakkuk 3:2 (The Message)

1-2 A prayer of the prophet Habakkuk, with orchestra: God, I've heard what our ancestors say about you, and I'm stopped in my tracks, down on my knees. Do among us what you did among them. Work among us as you worked among them. And as you bring judgment, as you surely must, remember mercy.
How I need to hear a word that renews the awesomeness of God to the very core of my being! To be reminded and to actually remind myself that it's all about Him and not me. I don't want to return to the good old days, I want to make sure I'm where I'm supposed to be today...To make sure I'm still connected. Lord, let me hear Your words and be in awe, to be afraid in a godly reverence, not afraid of You, to be to fearful of offending You...This is my prayer today!

Monday, October 15, 2007

When my wife and I married we agreed that we would wait five years before we had children, after all, we were going to be evangelists the rest of our lives and may never have kids...too busy working for the Lord you know! Our first children was born within a month and half of our fifth anniversary, while we were in our second much for life long evangelism. After Kaitlin came around we were never having any more children, I couldn't imagine loving another as much as I loved/love her, then we went on vacation, there was a baby epidemic in North Carolina where we were vacationing and I came home wanting another little one. Today I'm home with my eight year old, she's got a fever and a tummy ache, so I brought her home from school, she went immediately to bed and I haven't seen her since. It bothers me when my kids are sick, when I can't fix the wrong things, sick things, inner things, when I can't make things different for them. I struggle when I don't have all the answers, when I have to tell them no, or that we can't afford it, or not now. It bothers me when they struggle and when they hurt...I want to make it better. I wonder how the Lord feels when we struggle? Our issues and struggles, our sickness and our pain are no problem for Him, but I wonder how God feels when His kids are sick?

Saturday, October 13, 2007

USF vs UCF=64 to 12 Several of the guys from our church ventured to Tampa today for the football game between USF and UCF. It was a great game, I had a wonderful all beef hotdog and a huge coke, great fellowship, and our team won...I am the most non-athletic person on the face of the earth, but enjoyed being with my friends and am glad our team won! All I can say is....Go Bulls!
Where Are You Going?
I've been reading some blogs and message boards and have become disturbed at the belief system of many Christians. It appears that more believers are believing less and then we wonder why unbelievers don't believe in Christ. There appears to be a surge of questioning of Biblical truth, I I am reminded of the words of the Prophet Isaiah who said that if the foundations be destroyed where will the unrighteous appear? If we as believers question the foundational truths of scripture, if we no longer believe that scripture is divinely inspired, that Jesus is the only way, or that there is a hell, if we no longer believe that a person must repent and turn to Christ, why should some one who doesn't know the Lord want to? I've also noticed that while there is a questioning of hell, there isn't any questions about heaven...Let me suggest that we can't have our pie and eat it to...If there is no hell, there probably isn't a heaven! I'm all for progression, for making the church relevant, check out New Vision Ministry Center in Louisville and you will see a progressive church that has taken foundational truths and implemented them into an extremely progressive setting, I love it...Yet I am concerned that there is with some a turning and questioning of truth that is unhealthy. Jude said we must earnestly contend for the faith...fight for the truth! We are called to study the scripture, which most definitely includes asking questions and knowing for ourselves, not just accepting a belief system at face value...but the Word of God works, it speaks for itself! After Jesus fed the multitudes the Bible says that many of His disciples went away and walked with Him no more. Jesus asked the twelve, "Will you also go away?" The response is incredible, "Lord, to whom shall we go? You are the Christ and You have the words of eternal life!" Where are you going?

Friday, October 12, 2007

Hangers, Ings, & Things
I have some issues and am probably in need of some serious counseling or Prozac, or both! Can anyone explain to me how clothes hangers disappear in the same house they were used in? At my house I do the laundry during the school year, without fail each week we are short a hanger or two, and no one knows how that happens. Also, when you remove a clothing item the empty hanger should never be left among the clothes still hanging, it should be placed in a designated spot, but each week I search for hangers...frustrating! And then, there's this thing of not using the "G" on ing words, like going, showin, doin, leavin, complainin, eatin...etc. What's up with that? It's kind of like preaching from the Book of Revelations instead of the Book of Revelation or talking about the Fruits of the Spirit instead of the Fruit of the Spirit...I told you I have issues! Not that I'm perfect, but it isn't hard to take the hanger off the rack and it shouldn't disappear if it's placed in the right spot and adding a "G" and leaving off an "S" wouldn't hurt anyone would it? Of course, my issues are just my issues...In fact, maybe this is just about me in the first place! And isn't it amazing how easy it is to see others issues and to make them our own, when in truth, we're still a work in progress ourselves! Maybe it's not counseling or Prozac that I need after all, perhaps I just need to relax and let life take it's course, it will all work out in the end!

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Whew...I'm Not Going To Jail!
My income tax is due this Monday, I mailed my information to my CPA last week from the wrong tax stuff is lost in USPO space and there are three actual working days before taxes are due...was I scared or what? It's the last thing on my mind when I go to bed and the first thing when I get up, wake up in the middle of the night...right there on my forehead. Today I was able to get the information together, faxed and already heard back some good news! Whew, I just knew I was going to be involved in a prison ministry from the inside and am so thankful that I'm not!

Monday, October 08, 2007

New Release
Several Years ago I began to send out e-devotionals to the congregations that I was pastoring. It began as announcements with a thought attached and became a devotional. Now I write bi-weekly if not weekly, usually sharing a thought, a life event, or a prophetic insight, and some times something just plain stupid. This past week I decided to write a book using these devotionals, it won't be a novel or a spiritual revelation, no it will be a thought on paper, the rantings and ravings of a man on a journey, of a person with a passion to release something that is deep within his belly. I'm pretty pumped about this, this first writing will be a office produced experiment, my secretary will create a colorful cover, we'll use our church binding machine and it will be a short production, but it is a start and I'm excited. Inside of each of us there is something waiting to be released, something God has placed deep within us and is waiting to see what we do with it. Call a seed, a kingdom deposit, a gift or a talent, whatever it is, it's there and we all have it...whatever it is! If someone asked me what I would do if I could do what I want to do, I would write all the time and preach on the weekends. If I could live by preaching on Sundays and writing, it would be awesome...not that I don't like what I'm doing now...I do...I'm talking about that living your dream stuff we all have...Whatever I do, I want to be creative, to glorify God, to bless others, and to make a difference in other peoples lives! What's inside of you that needs to come out?

Thursday, October 04, 2007

I have just concluded a series of revival meetings in Elyria, OH, and am now spending a couple days with my friends. My flight leaves on Saturday afternoon and I can't wait to get home. I've missed my wife and daughters, our oldest daughter Kaitlin has been sick, but she is doing better, the Lord has ministered to her. She also informed me that if I were to buy her something it would help...I offered to share my new House of Blues shirt...she's not buying the offer! I've missed my world, Oasis World Outreach, Heritage Academy, the babies in K-3, my office and my pastor. I've missed Florida, there really is no place like home! While I've missed all these things terribly, I needed to be here and will leave with a refreshed spirit. Something happened in my spirit this week, I felt no pressure to perform, didn't need to be anything I wasn't, the people received me...for me! Service after service I shared God's Word, and they received and responded to it, they pulled the preach right out of me and allowed me to say what I felt the Holy Spirit said to me...And then we went home! Perhaps it's just a preacher thing, but it was a joy to minister to people that simply loved God and wanted His Word and that enjoyed hanging out with a little fat guy from Florida. I will return home fresh and renewed, ready for the next place, encouraged and ready to love God, love people, and to tell them of the awesome grace of's our mission you know! PS: For those who think my wife doesn't really exist, this is our picture at a recent Tampa Bay Devil Rays game. I'm looking old and fat, she's still hot after all of these years! She's younger than me of course...I married up!

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

My Daughter Is Sick...Would You Pray For Her?
Last night our youth pastor brought our oldest daughter home from dance practice saying that her chest had been hurting, her pulse was racing, and she was having difficulty breathing. My wife took her to a Urgent Care facility where they got her calmed down, did a breathing treatment and determined she doesn't have pneumonia. We're not certain what is going on with her, but she has not well for several weeks, has headaches quite often and simply needs the touch of the Lord. I'm in Ohio, so while I can't really do anything for her, I want her to be well and I believe that God heals and that when people pray God moves. For me it really is that simple. So if you read my blog today, would you mind whispering a prayer for my baby? Thanks!

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Lost Lives
Brittney Spears lost custody of her children's really a sad thing. I don't watch her and am neither a fan nor defender of her. She has made choices on her own and is now reaping what she has sown, but it is still a sad thing, after all, our society created her and now it's going to crucify her. Here is a person with charisma, talent, finances, and two precious children, she has issues and has not been able to resolve them. Recently her return to the stage was less than perfect, greatly criticized, and now her private life is being made public. But tonight when she gets home it won't be a secretary or publicity agent or a nanny explaining to her children that they can't live with Mommy anymore, it will be Brittney. Can she or should she return to show business, she probably can, I wouldn't. I would get my act together, my children back into my life, my addictions under control and tell the rest of the world where to go...this girl needs Jesus and some people in her life that aren't saying what she wants to hear but what she needs to hear. She needs people that have the ability to create an atmosphere of restoration and healing. Lost people lead lost lives, they simply need to be found...I pray someone finds Brittney before it's too late!
Cleveland Rocks!
I'm in Elyria, OH this week with my good friends Thom and Janet Cody, they have a great church and are such awesome people...I love being around them! We've had three phenomenal services, there has been no pressure to perform, just open to allowing the Holy Spirit and the Word of God to work in their lives. They have a number of older people, these people have absolutely blessed my soul beyond words, they worship, they receive the Word, and they respond to it. I love to watch them praying in the altar and ministering to one another, it's fantastic! Elyria is just outside of Cleveland, yesterday I went to Cleveland, visited the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, ate lunch at the House of Blues...I know, I'm such a sinner, but the Lord must not have minded too much, He still used me last night! The city is awesome, if it didn't get cold and lots of snow I could probably live there...That Florida weather just can't be beat, but Cleveland Rocks!