February 28

Last night after I got in from a basketball game, I plugged my phone into its charger because the battery was low. This is a ritual for me as I hate it when the charge gets lower than 50 percent. After an hour or so, I unplugged my phone and headed to the bedroom to retire for the night. When I looked at the phone, the charge was the same or lower than it was when I plugged it in earlier. Upon further examination, I realized the cord wasn’t plugged up to the electrical outlet. It’s kinda hard to recharge a phone when it’s not plugged up to the source for power.

The same is true in our spiritual life. It’s hard to charge or recharge our hearts if they’re not connected to the Source. Are you at a place in life where you just feel drained of your spiritual walk with God? Your batteries seem to be getting lower and lower. You better make sure you’re plugged in to the real power source. Let me make a few suggestions.

First, you have to be plugged into the source of life by spending time with the Creator of life. There is absolutely no way possible to grow spiritually without spending time with God through prayer and Bible study. You have to carve out some time in your day where you read your Bible and spend time in prayer. God reveals himself to us through scripture and prayer allows us to come into his presence and have communion with him. You can’t grow spiritually by osmosis. It must be intentional.

Second, if you want to recharge your life, you must have some spiritual ritual in your schedule. Yes, I’m talking about cooperate worship with fellow brothers and sisters in Christ. I’ve had people tell me: “I can grow in my faith without attending church.” You can, But more than likely you won’t. The coal that burns the hottest isn’t the one in isolation, but rather the one that piled up or next to the others. There’s just something dynamic about worshipping with others. God shows up and lives begin to change.

So, the choice is yours today. There’s a difference in accidentally not charging a phone and intentionally not charging a life. The power for life is waiting on you. Godspeed my friends.


February 27

How many times have we witnessed a child breaking their parents heart? Somehow, some way this son or daughter gets in trouble and they need their parents to bail them out. What’s sad is, these children or young people only call out to their moms and dads when they get in trouble. Otherwise they want to live their lives independently from their parent’s values and discipline. But the moment they get in trouble, who do they call? You got it, mom or dad. What’s sad is they show little appreciation or gratitude for all the things their parents do for them. And when the waters are smoothed over, the kids go back to the same behavior. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen this over the years.

But wait a minute. Don’t we as children of God demonstrate the same behavior? All of a sudden we find ourselves in the midst of trouble and the first thing we do is run to God and expect Him to fix everything. Even though He’s pretty much a stranger to us. While the storms are raging around us, we clean up our act for a moment. We ramp up our prayer life and church attendance and things start to clear up. All of a sudden the clouds part and the sun starts shining on our lives again and the first thing we do is go back to our previous way of life. Just as the actions of a child disappoints a parent, so do the actions of a Christian disappoint the Father.

Healthy families love and honor each other in the good and bad times. Our God doesn’t want to be a roadside service to aid you when your life breaks down. He wants you to love Him with every fiber of your life each and every day. Spend time with Him everyday and the storms will be easier to navigate. Godspeed my friends.


February 26

I learned a valuable lesson last week as we eased back into my regular routine of running each morning. It takes a long time to get in good physical condition, but it doesn’t take long to get out of shape. On the second day of running, I noticed that my legs were a bit sore throughout the day. My layoff time had be a little over a week. The good news was, after the third day, things seemed to be back to normal.

The same is true with our spiritual conditioning. It takes a long time to get into a regular daily walk with God, but it sure doesn’t take long to get out of fellowship with Him. All it takes is apathy and distractions. Before you know it, you’re not spending time with him in prayer and Bible study. Church attendance takes a back seat to the things of this world. You don’t become overtly evil, but that sweet fellowship you once knew has been replaced with selfish desires. You realize that something is missing, but you can’t quite put your finger on it. Decisions you once made in prayer are now replaced with logic and circumstances. Does that sound familiar? Your soul is experiencing an eclipse from the warmth and comfort of the Heavenly Father. You search and long for what you once experienced, but the evil one puts negative thoughts in your head. You begin to blame any and everyone for your condition, but the reality is, it’s your responsibility. So what do you do?

Well, it’s pretty simple. You can either stay where you are or you can get back in shape. Oh, the excuses not to are convenient and plentiful. So you better choose wisely. Today is the day when you can take time to spend with God. The good news is, he’s already reserved a table and there is a chair with your name on it. The question is: Will you hear his voice and harden not your heart? The choice is all yours. Godspeed my friends.


February 25

As I was walking the dogs this morning, I couldn’t help but think about a sermon I heard Dr. Graham preach years ago. At the end of his message he said: “Tonight, many of You came here alone, but you don’t have to leave here in that same condition. The Lord, Jesus Christ wants to come into your heart and when he does, you won’t be alone.”

This morning you might feel the same way. Due to the circumstances of life you’re feeling abandoned, isolated, and alone. The good news for you is, you don’t have to stay that way. There is one who knows how you feel. There is one who totally understands you. There is one who will never leave you nor forsake you. His name is Jesus and he’s ready to make all things new in your life. Call on him right now and you’ll find that he’s closer than you ever imagined. Godspeed my friends.


February 24

The other night while attending a Mississippi State basketball game, a beautiful young mother of two, who had once been one of our youth members at a church I previously served, came and sat behind me. Years ago, it had been my high honor to perform her wedding. As her husband made his way to his seat and got situated, I asked them: “Is that knot I tied still tight?” With a godly smile on her face she responded: “Tighter than ever. By the way, how many wedding have you done over the years?” I told her I had no clue because it never dawned on me to keep such a record. It blessed my heart to see this couple growing in their love for each other as they continue to establish Christ as the head of their house.

We’re about to head into the spring and summer months of the year and a lot of couple will celebrate their wedding day. Weddings over the years have changed quite a bit. I can’t remember the last time I attended a wedding reception where there was a cake, a bowl full of mixed nuts and a tray pastel mints to go along with some green punch. The average cost of a wedding these days is $27,000.00. Let that sink in for a moment. The problem many couples have is they spend so much time planning for their wedding, that they forget to prepare for the marriage. The wedding and reception last just a few hours, but after the rice has been thrown and the honeymoon is over, you have to come home to each other.

The best advice I could give to a young couple is to prepare more for the marriage than the wedding. This always includes premarital counseling with a pastor or a Christian counselor. No matter the cost, nor the time, this is a must. Also, couples need to set as a priority a religious ritual in their home. In other words, find a church home and grow in your faith together. Remember: “Unless the Lord builds a house, its builder labor in vain.” I wonder how many of the marriages I’ve performed are still growing strong? Of the ones that are, I can assure you, Christ is involved in that relationship. If not, it’s still not too late. Godspeed my friends.


February 23

Facebook is a wonderful tool to connect with friends and reconnect with friends from our past. However, there are times when it becomes destructive rather than constructive. This modern tool known as social media has given us a platform to express our views on politics, religion, and social issues. Instead of stimulating our minds and exploring other viewpoints, we become angry and divisive with those who differ from us. Rarely do we show love for those who sit on the opposite aisle of our mindset and values.

Over the past few days, following the death of Dr. Billy Graham, it has been refreshing to see so many post about Christ, Godliness, and faith. I may have missed it, but I haven’t read one negative post on the life of this spiritual giant. (I’m sure there have been some, but I haven’t seen them and I wouldn’t read them any way.) It’s almost as if we’ve found common ground that we can stand and agree. You see, even in dying, Dr. Graham has taught us how to live. In total dependence on our Heavenly Father. He wasn’t perfect, but he was an example of how follow Christ.

Several years ago I was talking to a church about a situation that they were going through. They had required all their leaders to sign a document before they could hold a position of leadership. When I asked them why they did this, one replied: “We needed something to rally behind.” My response, probably not well received I’m sure, was: “Why didn’t you just rally around the cross?” If we did that, our churches, cities, states, and nation would look different. I know my life looks different when I do that very thing. Godspeed my friends.


February 22

In an interview several years ago, Dr. Billy Graham said: “When I see my Lord face to face, the first thing I’m going to ask him is: ‘Why did you choose me?’ Because I know I was chosen.” That’s an interesting question that has often crossed my mind. Why did God choose someone like me? I know there are individuals out there more talented, smarter, and even more influential.

Over the years as I’ve studied the scriptures, a similar question has resonated through my mind. Why did Jesus select someone like Judas to be a disciple? Here was a guy who loved being a part of ministry when the crowds were great and the money was good. However, when Jesus started talking about suffering and dying and the hardship that would follow, Judas looked for a way out. So he betrayed the one who knew him best and loved him before he was born for 30 pieces of silver. Unfortunately, many of betray him for less than that.

The reality of Christianity is that God often selects the least likely individual to accomplish his plans. He did so with Jacob, Moses, David, Peter, and Paul, just to name a few. But here’s what you need to remember today. God has chosen you as well. When Jesus died on the cross, he died for all. He chose all. The real question today is: “Will you choose him?” I’m certainly glad, as millions are, that Dr. Graham did. Choose wisely my friends. Godspeed.


February 21

My heart is broken today to learn about the death of Billy Graham. He was more than just a preacher or an evangelist, he was a true man of God. There’s no telling how many lives were changed through his preaching and ministry over the years. I had the privilege of hearing him twice. Once in the Orange Bowl in Miami and the other time was in the Superdome in New Orleans. As a matter of fact, I actually got to be a volunteer and worked the event in New Orleans.

Over the years I’ve watched various television interviews with Dr. Graham, from Johnny Carson to Larry King. One thing I noticed about those events, the people conducting the interviews were in awe of his presence and had the utmost respect for him. He was the the preacher to the Presidents and you can be assured, they respected him.

His ministry was a model of integrity and character. They always had a open book policy and throughout his years, there was never a hint of anything scandalous or illegal. He was America’s preacher and we will fill his loss. Dr. Graham walked with God and was no more, for God took him home. Thank you Lord for blessing us with a once in a lifetime servant of God. Well done thy good and faithful servant, enter now into the joy of your Master. Godspeed.


February 20

Every now and then I get an inbox on messenger from one of my friends on Facebook. In these messages, some people are asking for prayer about certain situations they’re going through while others are seeking advice about problems they are facing in life. To be honest, I’m probably the least qualified to deal with certain things, but hopefully God uses something I say or write to help these individuals. One question which was recently asked of me was: “How do you get over hurtful things done by family members even when they refuse to apologize? And furthermore they keep doing the same thing over and over.”

Forgiveness is a slippery slope in the Christian life. Our forgiveness from God is directly tied to our willingness to forgive others. The reality of the situation is, those who really hurt us, rarely come and apologize for their actions. Sadder still, this often happens in the church as well. Some of the most devastating things which have taken place in my life and the life of my family have come through the actions and words of church folks. When this happens, I have two choices. First, I can become angry and allow an unforgiving spirit to fester up in my heart. When I do this, it cuts me off from the presence of God. It will also affect other relationships as well.

Second, I can forgive that person and move on with my life. You’ve heard the expression: “Forgive and forget”. That’s humanly impossible. But you can forgive and get on with your life. Don’t expect ungodly people to act godly. Even in family situations you can love them, but not allow them to continue to hurt you. Sometimes limited exposure is best. Give it time and maybe, just maybe their hearts will change. Pray for God to work in their hearts. But hear this, life is too short for unhealthy relationships. You decide how much time to invest. I’m not Dr. Phil, but I want to surround myself with people who elevate me spiritually and socially. Not those who tear me down. Hopefully this is of some help to you today. Godspeed my friends.


February 19

After a week of rehab and rest, today was the day to give the ole hamstring a try. We were able to go 3.5 miles with no discomfort or problem. However, through this experience there are still valuable life lessons we all can learn. At least I have.

First, when you’re hurt either physically, emotionally, or spiritually, it takes time to heal. There are events from my past that still cause my heart to ache. Sometimes the only medicine for a broken heart or spirit is time. What we need to remember is, that time is different for different people. Just because you healed at a rapid rate, don’t expect everyone to follow the same pattern. That’s why going through grief is a process and not a moment.

Second, sooner or later you’ve got to try to take a step further in life, even if it’s a small step. At least do something to help you get healthy and back on your feet. Remember, God’s more concerned about direction headed than distance covered. The pace that you move might be slower than before, but get moving. There are times when we have to do something for someone else in order to take the spotlight off our own pain.

Finally, don’t stop once you get started. It’s easy to just say: “This is just the way it’s going to be.” Never be defeated by one loss. The good news is, as you move forward in life, you have the assurance that you don’t move alone. Wherever you go, whatever you do, God is already there. Just keep putting one foot in front of the other. You’ll be surprised at how far you can go with His help. Godspeed my friends and keep on keeping on.


February 18

Last evening while I was at the Mississippi State basketball ball game, a few young people decided to get in our golf carts at the church and take them for a joy ride. They managed to damage two of our four carts and rut up part of the church yard and my yard. They used universal keys to crank them up and go on their little rampage. Fortunately, one of our members stopped them or there’s no telling what the damage would have been. The kids ran away on foot before the sheriff could get to our place.

In the course of our conversation with the law, the deputy told us they would have to confront the kids at school. He said: “If we go to their houses, their parents will cover for them. Can you imagine? A child is free to break the law, do what they want to do and not be held accountable.

The problem with our society today is we have no respect nor regard for anyone. Not even the church. I can forgive these young people and even love them, but they should be punished for what they did. Parents, you do your children no service when you help them escape accountability. Hopefully these young people will learn a valuable lesson. It seems to me that the board of education needs to be applied to the seat of knowledge in this case. Godspeed my friends.


February 17

I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but the individuals who scream at the top of their lungs about tolerance and acceptance are the most intolerant people around. Furthermore, they feel they can say anything they want about another person because it’s their right and privilege. Heaven help those who profess Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior because they will be mocked and ridiculed publicly and regularly.

This past week on the television show “The View”, Joy Behar, one of the hosts suggested that Vice President Mike Pence has to be “mentally ill” because he not only talks to Jesus, but he listens to him as well. I can tell you right now without reservation, that if any celebrity criticized or mocked an individual of the Islamic faith, the LBGTQ community, or any other group, discipline action would have been swift and severe. But why are we surprised or taken back by such events? This has happened because people of faith have become lackadaisical about their walk with God. Maybe we haven’t been listening enough to Him.

This is what Ms. Behar doesn’t understand. Our faith in Christ Jesus gives us direct access to the Father. When we pray, we go directly into the presence of our Creator. And prayer my friends is a dialogue not a monologue with God. We speak to Him and He speaks to us. It’s called living by the Spirit. But don’t expect the world to understand it. Remember, Jesus himself said we as his followers would be mocked and ridiculed for our beliefs.

Another aspect of our faith is forgiveness. We have to not only love one another, but we are commanded to forgive and pray for those who persecute us. So today, I forgive Ms. Behar for her hurtful and misinformed words. I sure hope she’s learned a lesson about tolerance.

I can’t help but be reminded of the song we sang as a child. “And he walks with me and he TALKS with me and he tells me I am his own. And the joy we share as we tarry there, none other has ever known.” Count me among the mentally ill for His voice I often hear. Godspeed.


February 16

In light of the mass school shooting that left 17 high school students dead, many of us are left wondering how this has now become common place in our country? Over the past few days so many of us have offered solutions to a problem which is now at epidemic proportions. What drove Nikolas Cruz to take an AR-15 assault rifle and walk down a hallway and end the lives of these innocent, precious young people? Upon his arrest, the FBI agents and police officers said he had a cold and strange look on his face. One would have to expect he was driven by evil forces to do such a thing. The reality of the world in which we live is, there are still a lot of individuals out there like Cruz who are waiting for their chance to inflict needless pain of others. How have we arrived at such a place in our society?

This past month a group of men from our security team at church attended a seminar of church safety. They were told that on average, there are 4 acts of violence a month in churches around our nation. Think about that for a moment. Two places where we’ve always assumed we’d be safe, our schools and our churches have become places of uncertainty and violence. At our church, we take extra precautions every time we have a service because that’s just the world we now live in as a people.

Now I’m not for a moment going to suggest that I have an answer for this horrific situation. But I am going to say that God’s people have to step up to the plate and get serious about our responsibilities. How can we expect the world to act godly when the church, the bride of Christ is not. Somehow we taken our eyes off of the main thing and gotten side tracked off our mission. We have been called to be the light of the world by our love for one another. Now if we can’t get that right, how are we going to change the world? Christians have a hard time loving those with whom we disagree. The solution for a troubled world is changed hearts among God’s people. We better start remembering what is important. Do you know what it is? “Love God with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength. Then we love our neighbor as ourself.” Everything hinges on that. Loving God, and loving others. It’s time to set pettiness aside and get serious about serving God. You say that’s a dream and a unreal proposition to a complex situation. I say it’s a mandate given to us by Jesus himself. But then again, I’m just a simple guy, but I serve a mighty God. It’s time He became the focal point of all His people do. Godspeed my friends.


February 15

Right now there are some of you out there going through a tough time. The winds of life are blowing hard against you and the storms of certain situations are beating you down. Your small vessels are finding it hard to stay afloat amidst the waves of heartache and despair. You’ve called out to God but there seems to be no response. You might be at the point of giving up all hope and saying: “I quit! What’s the point in continuing on?” We reach a level in life when we wish things didn’t have to be so hard. That’s when we have to become aware of a few things which can and will make a difference.

First, don’t be surprised by the difficulties in life. Jesus, himself said: “In this world you’ll have tribulations and trouble.” Look at his life. Of the 12 disciples he called, one betrayed him, one denied him, one doubted him, and only one was present when he was crucified. Christianity isn’t a life insurance policy which protects us from all of life’s calamities. However it does insure us that nothing separates us from the love of God. He answers every prayer, but he doesn’t give an explanation to every difficult situation we face.

Second, rest assured that help will come. Usually when you least expect it. My Mom had an expression which she quoted over and over again. “This too shall pass.” I heard a preacher one time say his favorite verse in the Bible was: “It came to pass.” He noted that it never said: “It came to stay.” Remember, how we navigate our difficult days says more about our faith than anything. Each and everyday your preaching a sermon as to the validity of the Christian faith. Preach it well my friends, preach it well. Godspeed.


February 14

Happy Valentines Day everyone! Today’s a day when most wives tell their husbands that they don’t want flowers or candy. Guys, don’t believe the lie, you better come home with something. Tonight, restaurants all over the country will have couples standing in line waiting for a table to celebrate this special day. Greeting card companies will enjoy record breaking sales as we strive to purchase the right card to communicate our deepest feelings to the ones we love. For many couples it’s the only time they do something special for one another. A day devoted to love. What a novel idea. But there has to be more to it.

In the movie, Forrest Gump, Forrest proposes to his childhood sweetheart, Jenny on the 4th of July. In one of the most memorable lines delivered in the movie, Forrest says: “I’m not a smart man, but I know what love is.” The question is, do you? Do you really and truly know what love is all about? We often equate love to a feeling or an emotion, but it’s a lot more than that. Love is the giving of one’s self to another. It is wanting the best for that individual. “Love believes all things, bears all things. It is never selfish and never rude. Love never disappears.” When everything in this world fades away, love remains. Why? Because it is the very nature of God. As a matter of fact, we have the capability to love because He first loved us. Think on that for a moment.

Love was when God stepped on this earth in the form of his son Jesus Christ and willingly and lovingly died for all. That’s what love is my friends. As you celebrate this day, think of the greatest display of love ever demonstrated on this earth. Then you’ll have a small understanding of just what love is. You don’t have to be smart to know it when you see it. Godspeed my friends. Happy Valentines Day.


February 13

I’ve learned over the years that when God calls, you better respond. You see, we talk a lot about the grace and love of our Heavenly Father, but there is a limit to his patience and there are moments in our lives which we can’t recapture. In other words, don’t think or assume there’s always going to be a “tomorrow. Today is the only day you have. Don’t put him off.

A couple of weeks ago I received a call from one of our church members, who worked in a nursing home. She told me they had a resident at that facility that was at the end of his life and he wanted to talk to someone about his salvation. He had lived a rough life and wanted to make sure he was square with the house. To my understanding, at one time he had made a profession of faith, but had drifted away. I agreed to come and talk to the man.

When I arrived at the nursing home, I was stopped at the door by one of the nurses. The entire facility was quarantined and under lockdown. No one was to get in or out due to the outbreak of the flu. My sweet church member saw me and came outside to visit with me. While we were talking there was an ambulance outside loading up one of the residents. She told me the individual being transported to the hospital was the man I came to see. He had a severe case of the flu and was being transported to the local medical facility. He died the next day.

I didn’t get a chance to talk to him and in reality there is a sense of guilt on my part. Maybe I could have gotten there sooner, who knows? All I do know is he probably thought he had another day, little did he know that was the only day. The same is true with you and me. When God calls and you hear his voice, harden not your heart. Today is all you have. Godspeed my friends.


February 12

This morning I got up a bit earlier to set out for a long run. About a half mile into my journey I felt a sharp pain as if I’d been shot in the back of my leg. The pain was so great that it literally took me to the ground. Immediately, there was no doubt in my mind what had taken place, I had pulled my hamstring. While lying on the ground, to matters worse, it started raining. Okay, what do you do? You do the best that you can. You get up and try to get home. A million things rush through your mind and of course there’s a life lesson here for us all.

There are times in life when you rocking along pretty good and all of a sudden, out of no where, something or even someone knocks you to the ground. The pain in your heart is excruciating. You are broken, battered, and hurting. What do you do? Some choose to stay down and wallow in self-pity. But you have to get up and keep on keeping on in life. You can’t let the fall define your life. The good news is, you get to choose.

Second, just when the pain is at it’s greatest and you don’t think it can get worse, don’t be surprised by the rain and the storms which follow. The external noise around you will make the journey harder than you imagined. But remember, the trip home takes place one step at a time. This morning, to be honest, I wasn’t sure if I’d make it back to the house, but I did, one step at a time.

Now there’s a choice in my life. My leg is killing me right now. So what am I going to do about it? The answer is simple, I’m going to rehab it and get healthy and run again... soon. There is no other option. The same is true in life. You have to get up, get healthy, and live again. If it were easy, anyone would do it. It’s a choice that has to be made. Will there be additional pain? You bet. But in the end it will be worth it. It will for you as well. The rehab starts today for me. When does it start for you? Godspeed.


February 11

The more I study and know about God, the more I realize I don’t know much. He’s always more than one can imagine and His ways are always beyond my simple mind’s ability to comprehend. But the good news and something I constantly have to remind myself of is, His grasp on me is more important than my grasp on Him.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve failed Him and fallen short of His expectations. But even in my sins and shortcomings, His love for me is unwavering. It’s unstoppable and unchanging. In other words, the love of God is unconditional and it has always been there for the taking. Why He would love me is outright a mystery to me.

Today you need to realize that there’s nothing you can do to make God love you any more. There’s nothing you can do to make God love you any less. God Loves you and me as we are and not as we ought to be. But that love requires a response from all of us. You see, He has provided a way for you to come to Him and accept His free gift of salvation. “God loves us so much in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” Even a mystery is deserving of a response. You may not think you deserve it, and your right. But His arms are open wide for you today. Run to Him and experience the wonder of abundant life. It’s your’s for the asking. Godspeed my friends.


February 10

 56 years ago I came into this world. Funny, I really don't remember much about that day. Just the fact that I'm here is a miracle. You see, my Mom and Dad planned to have four children. However, along the way Mom had two miscarriages. Now if you do the math, you'll understand if those pregnancies had been taken to full term, Pete and I would never have seen the light of day. Romans 8:28 comes to mind. After three boys, my parents had their hearts set on a girl. What they got was me. I hope they weren't too disappointed. Let me tell you how awesome God is and how he can work extraordinary things in average people. Growing up, when one looks at a body of work, the word average comes to mind. I was an average student, never won a single academic award. I was an average athlete, not great at anything. Pretty much average in most things, even today. However, God has put me around individuals with superior talents and abilities. These individuals have invested in my life and ministry and have pushed me beyond my own expectations. I've seen unbelievable tasks accomplished because God's hand was in it. So, if you have a child that you think is average, to no fault of their own, make sure they surround themselves with great friends and co-workers. It has made the difference in my life. Godspeed.


February 9

There’s nothing quite like a good friend. Scripture tells us that “a friend sticks closer than a brother.” For many of us, we’ve found that statement to be true. There’s also an expression which states: “Friends are a gift we give ourselves.” But let me ask you this: Are you giving yourself good gifts in life by the relationships you choose? You can’t pick your family, but you can choose your friends. You better choose wisely.

Friends ought to elevate you and not pull you down. I can’t tell you how many times my life has been enhanced because of a friend. Likewise, there have been moments when I’ve allowed others to lead me down destructive avenues in life. A true friend will always want the best for you.

Second, friendship is built on mutual respect and love for one another and not pettiness and neediness. There are too many of us who have fallen victim to an unhealthy relationship. Do you have an individual in your life that’s high maintenance? If so, you can bet that relationship will effect all your other relationships. I don’t have time for high maintenance people in my life. Usually these individuals are irrational and unreasonable. One rule to remember: Irrational never meets rational in the middle. Rational always has to chase irrational. Aren’t you tired of chasing and never catching?

Finally, remember in life, you’ll never have a friend to love you as much as Jesus. “Greater Love has no one known than he who will lay his life down for his friends”. That my friend is a friendship worth having. Godspeed my friends.

February 8

How many of you out there would classify yourself as a worrier? Come on, be honest, do you tend to worry unnecessarily about things in your life and the lives of people you love? If we’re really honest with ourselves, many of us tend to worry about a multitude of things in life. We worry about our children. We worry about our finances. We worry about our relationships. We worry about our health and security. Some of us worry that we won’t have anything to worry about in the days ahead. So how can we find relief from the stress of worry?

First, we need to realize that there’s a big difference in concern and worry. There are things and aspects of our lives which should be of great concern to all of us. However, worrying about a situation is unhealthy when we become consumed about a problem or situation. Remember this simple rule: “If you can change something, change it. If you can’t change it, don’t worry about it.” Worry is interest on a note before it comes due.

Second, unnecessary worry is a form of atheism. Yep, it sure is. You have to realize that your Father in Heaven knows what you need. Also remember that He’s always going before you. So if He’s already in tomorrow, don’t worry about the future. “Trust him in all of your ways and He will direct your path.”

Finally, unnecessary worry is counterproductive. You can’t add one minute to your life, or grow one hair on your head by worrying. As a matter of fact, worry actually reduces your life span. You actually take time off your life by worrying. Now I’ve really given you something to worry about, haven’t I?

Whatever problem you’re facing today, I can assure you it won’t get solved by worrying. What I can tell you is God’s big enough to handle whatever you’re going through my friend. Trust Him and allow his strength and power to be enough. You’ll find peace and less stress when worry is replaced with faith. Godspeed my friends. Don’t sweat this, God’s got it.

February 7

Yesterday I was watch a sports talk show and the discussion among the panel centered around the Super Bowl Champions, the Philadelphia Eagles. The question which was being discussed was: “Do the Eagles have a quarterback controversy after winning the Super Bowl with Nick Foles. They even played part of an interview with Foles and he said: “I’m comfortable with my situation in Philadelphia.”

Where the discussion turned from there was very interesting for a public talk show. Greg Jennings, former wide receiver for the Packers said: “There is a difference with the Eagles because of their Christian faith. It starts with their head coach Doug Pederson all the way to Nick Foles. They’re sincere in what they say.” Cris Carter, Hall of Fame wide receiver echoed the same sentiment as Jennings. He noted that the faith of the team had been the difference in how the teammates treated each other.

One of the host of the program said this to Carter and Jennings: “I know the two of you are men of faith. I’m not much on religion, and I’m almost envious of the two of you. However, I’m not sure the Christian faith is the only faith that matters.” Wrong! It is the only religious faith that matters because it’s the only faith that offers a future. It’s the only faith that built on the resurrection of our founder. It’s the only religion that matters because it brings broken lives back together. It’s the only religion that matters because it disclosed the path to abundant life.

It’s refreshing to hear people in high profile positions openly profess their faith. It actually gives me hope and encouragement. Maybe if we were more open with our walk with Christ our world would look a little different. Anyway, I’m now a big fan of Foles, Pederson, and the Eagles. Just not over the Cowboys. Godspeed.

February 6

There are moments in life when God sends you what you need at the exact time you need it. What I’ve found to be true over the years is His timing is always perfect. Just about that moment in life when you have a doubt, a fear or even a lack of faith, He demonstrates his love and concern for you in a mighty way as if you say: “Don’t think for a moment that I’ve forgotten about you. Just continue to abide in me and leave the results of life in my hands.

As ministers we often reach a point where we wonder if what we do makes any difference at all. I’m not saying that to garner any sympathy, it’s just a fact. Any pastor, if they’re completely honest and transparent will echo those thoughts. Usually those feelings come in a time of mental, physical, or spiritual exhaustion. The evil one comes to your side and whispers: “Why are you doing this? The people don’t get it and you’re just spinning your wheels.” Such thoughts don’t come from our Comforter. These feelings have also been voiced by some of the great heroes of our faith. Spiritual giants such as Moses, Elijah, Jeremiah, and even John the Baptist. That’s when God reminds us our task isn’t to be successful, but rather obedient.

I was reminded of this lesson this past Sunday when six of my former church members from a previous church showed up for our morning worship. Just thinking about it now brings a tear to my eyes. Maybe in some small way God used our ministry there to bless others. I do know they were a blessing in my life and the life of my family. That fact that they made an effort to drive to our church following a Saturday night wedding was just the spiritual shot in my arm that I needed. Like we mentioned before, God sends you what you need when you need it. Godspeed my friends.


February 5

There are pains and hurts in our life which never go away. How does one get past the death of a spouse, the loss of a child or a parent, or even the betrayal of a friend? The reality which I share with grieving individuals is pretty simple. The pain never goes away, however you can learn how to manage it. However, one has to learn how to manage it in a healthy way rather than a destructive manner. Here is where the difference is for the child of God and the rest of the world. How we grieve and how we manage hurt and disappointment say a lot about of faith and relationship with God. In other words, do we really believe what we profess to believe?

I can’t tell you how many times my heart has been broken or at least bruised through the circumstances of life and the actions of others. I can’t change what life deals to me on a daily basis, but I can choose how I’ll react to it. I can allow the actions of others and the grief I experience to either draw me closer to God or move me away from His presence. The choice is totally mine. Sometimes instead of throwing a pity party I have to ask myself: “What can I learn from this and how can God change me for the better through these circumstances?” It’s never an easy process, but when I change my position, it’s amazing how much different the world looks through my eyes.”

As I examine my life, it’s clear to me that the Lord has been mighty good to me. Even in the darkest days, His presence has provided me a light and a hope. Each day His mercies are new and His promises are true. If you find yourself in hopeless and dark situation that’s so painful you don’t know what to do, call upon His name. The pain might not go away, but you’ll learn to manage it with a His help. Godspeed my friends.


February 4

Today millions will adjust their schedule in order to view the Super Bowl, including many churches. However, heaven forbid that we would do the same for the cause of Christ. Too many individuals have bought into a K-Mart blue light religion which basically says: “Come and follow me when it’s convenient.” The Christian must hear the mandate given to us by Jesus himself when he said: “If anyone is going to follow me they must first deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.”

Life boils down to priorities. What you prize, you will praise. What you praise, you will worship. Take time out of your schedule today and worship the King of kings and Lord of lords. Demonstrate to the world by your actions what’s really important. Godspeed my friends.


February 3

I have no clue how many funerals or weddings I’ve done during my more than 30 years of ministry. I had a pastor friend of mine who kept a detailed record of every service he performed. To be be honest, it never crossed my mind to keep such a list. I do know this, I’ve done a bunch of funerals over the span of my years. Some of them have been difficult, while others have been more like a Hall of Fame induction. Great Saints of our faith who have crossed over to hear these words: “Well done thy good and faithful servant, enter now into the joy of your Master.” You see, for a true Child of God, a memorial service is a time of celebration. Oh, don’t get me wrong, it’s a time of grief for family and friends who are left behind. But for the one in glory, they are just fine.

Several years ago when my mother suffered back to back strokes that ultimately took her life, I had a chance to see her just days prior to her death. Before I left her, I leaned over and kissed her and said: “This is going to end well for you, but not for me.” When my Dad passed away, just before he left us, I recited the 23rd Psalm to him, and moments later, he was gone. I preached both of their services. Were they difficult? You bet they were. However, there was a peace in my heart that surpassed all understanding because I knew where they were.

In a couple of hours I’ll have the high honor of preaching the memorial service for Herbert Junkin. In all my years of ministry, I’ve never known another like him. My heart hurts to the point of breaking, but not for him, but for his family, our church, and me. I know where he is and let me tell you......He’s just fine. As a matter of fact, he’s never been better. That’s a fact which can’t be debated. Godspeed my friends.


February 2

There are people out there in our world that take great delight in their misery. They wallow in self-pity and can’t understand why the world and life has been so rough on them. They are quick to tell you how bad they have it and believe no has ever had as rough as them. The sad part about these individuals is, usually they take no steps to get healthy.

There’s an interesting story recorded in the 5th chapter of the Gospel of John. There was a man who had been an invalid for 38 years. When Jesus sees this individual, he asked him a very intriguing question. “Do you want to be healed?” Well, duh!!! What kind of question is that to one who can’t walk? But in order to be healed two things were going to be required of this man. First, he was going to have to put forth and effort and second there going to have to be a life change for him. In other words, Jesus was ready to do his part, but the man had to have a little skin in the game as well.

So, the question come to some of us: “Do you really want to be healed? If so, what are you doing to take the necessary steps required of you? It may mean restoring a relationship with another person. It could be getting help from a doctor or counselor. It might be returning to the life that God wants you to live. However, it doesn’t happen by osmosis. You have to want it. The real problem with so many is, we’ve become familiar with our current pain and we’re not sure how much it’ll hurt to get healthy. The first step is really wanting it. Well, do you? Now, take up your mat and walk. Godspeed.


February 1

There are moments in my life when I don’t feel like a Christian. The pressures and stress of life and ministry can be a draining experience. You reach a point and wonder if you have any more to give. In other words, the well has begun to run dry. That’s when you have to realize that your faith isn’t based on a feeling, but rather a relationship. My grasp on God isn’t nearly as important as His grasp on me. In those moments of doubt and confusion, it’s good to slow down and just breathe. We need to realize that the business of life can rob us of the joy that comes with being a child of God.

Scripture reminds us to be still and know that He is God. In other words, slow down and remember who’s in charge. Don’t let the evil one convince you that you’re alone in this journey called life. Take a few minutes today and close your eyes and just think about the love and goodness of God. Stop trying to fix every problem you face because some situations can’t be fixed, only managed. Remember the promise that God has made to you. He’ll never leave nor forsake you. You may not feel Him, but I can assure you, He’s closer than you think. All you have to do is call upon His name.

There are situations we all face in life and we need to hear our Creator say: “Stop worrying, I’ve got this!” The reality is, He does.....if you’ll trust Him, even when you can’t feel Him. Godspeed my friends.


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