Archive | November, 2010

Reflections from another Thanksgiving

29 Nov

I am thankful for so many things … One of the greatest this year is another Thanksgiving with my dad and mom.  We drove up last Tuesday after church and didn’t come home until close to the end of the debacle called the Clemson / USC game on Saturday.

As I reflect on the week, a few things occur to me:

1.  My trips home consist of me working non-stop to get projects done at the house.  Whenever I slow down, I crash.  Nothing wrong with that, because I have to get this stuff done when I have time and time is at a premium.

2.  Its kind of surreal to sit back and think about all that Dad and I did together around that house and now I am doing this stuff and he can’t help.  Dad built this house.  Literally.  He only contracted a couple of things out and did 99% of the work himself.  Mom, Donna, Elaine and I helped, but he did most of the work.  To sit back and think about the things I am doing to the house now without him kind of stinks.

3.  Physically, Dad isn’t doing bad at all.  But I see the dementia increasing every time I go home.

4.  I fried 1 turkey this year and 3 turkey breasts.  I am glad Dad taught me how to do it, but again, kind of surreal to do this without him.

But, again, I am thankful to still have him here.  And I worry about Mom.  She is working so hard and pushing herself beyond limits.  Praying for them hard everyday.

Where does it all stand??

23 Nov

God is at work.  All around you.  And He is at work all over Ebenezer!!

To date, almost 80 people have made a commitment to step up and BE THE CHURCH God intended for us to be!!  Out of 1300 members of EBC, that’s not so great … OR IS IT??  Because, with all of my heart, I believe God will light us on FIRE with only a handful of people who are willing to be obedient to Him!!  If you are one of the 80, watch for more news coming down the pipe in the next couple of days concerning what it means to be the Viral Church at Ebenezer!!!

What are we doing here??

21 Nov

I mean, really … what are we doing??  How can we ever believe that God likes the games we play with Him.  We tell Him we will be faithful, we humble ourselves before Him, but it is only for a moment.  Then, BUSINESS AS USUAL!!  Havin’ it OUR WAY!!  (Just like at Burger King!)

That has been one of the biggest problems with many churches in the US for longer than I care to tell.  We put our best clothes on, spit-shine the buckle of the Bible belt at the holy hour on Sunday morning, and never think about it again.  Until a week or two later, that is.

God is READY FOR SOMETHING DIFFERENT!!!  And, for those who think this is a new movement, go read Acts 2!!!  It’s time the church START ACTING LIKE THE CHURCH!!!  And it is an exciting time!!!

Truth is, WE aren’t doing A THING!!  GOD IS IN CONTROL OF THIS ONE!!


18 Nov

That’s what I am!!  EXCITED!!  I am pumped that we exceeded our Operation Christmas Child goal!!  Especially in this day and time, when pundits claim all of that type of philanthropy should be decreasing, WE EXCEED OUR GOAL!!  And set what is possibly an all-time high!!

Could this be a sign that we really are going to TRUST GOD!!  And not try to take matters into our own hands!!  I sure hope so!!

Proud of you, Ebenezer!!

Spiritual Health

16 Nov

Many times over the past couple of weeks I’ve blogged, tweeted, preached, and taught about SPIRITUAL HEALTH.  God put this topic on my heart because it’s an issue at Ebenezer.  A correctable problem.

There are two facts I am sure of:

1.  The Spiritual Health of Ebenezer Baptist Church is DIRECTLY RELATED to the spiritual health of her members.  Because, after all, WE ARE THE CHURCH.  And I know there are some out there who have VERY HEALTHY spiritual lives.  And some who do not.

2.  If we work to be more SPIRITUALLY HEALTHY, God WILL address the other problems we face.  Like finances.  Like finding workers to help with ministries.  Like huge decisions that lay before us.

So, I am praying for the spiritual health of Ebenezer.  Will you join me??

Clearing things up

10 Nov

After speaking with a few folks about Sunday’s challenge, there are a few things I want to remind EBC as you consider this:

1.  DON’T BE AFRAID!!  This is not some sneaky way to get you to join a pyramid scheme!!  I’m not going to email you and tell you that you are now changing diapers in the nursery for the next three weeks!!!  This is about what God is calling YOU to do, not what I think you ought to do!!!

2.  This is NOT about ME, and it’s NOT about YOU.  It’s about God and what He wants to do with Ebenezer!!  We need to all be praying and asking for that EVERY DAY.

3.  The reason I asked you on Sunday to write it down and get it to me is that NO ONE is assumed on this one.  I hand-wrote a note and put it in the stack that I want to pursue God’s will for ME at Ebenezer.  Don’t assume that you are on this list … you will only get there with a conscious effort to be put on there!!  (Some have called, some have emailed, some have Tweeted, some told me on Facebook.  ALL of those are on the list!!  But you HAVE TO TELL ME!!)

As of this writing, we are up to about 60 folks who want to be a part of this viral movement.  A movement for us to put our HANDS AND FEET to work to build the Kingdom of God!!  Are you praying about joining us??  Let me know!!!

Something IMPORTANT happened Sunday

9 Nov

I am still praying for you, church … This past Sunday God brought a challenge to ALL OF US to step out and BE THE CHURCH.  To STOP PLAYING THE CHURCH GAME and GET IN THE GAME!!!!

At the end of this, the challenge issued to the congregation was to consider if YOU want to be part of what God is doing at Ebenezer and contact me!!   WRITE IT DOWN and hand it to me, email me, let me know if your intention is to move forward, as a church, and pursue God’s will and direction.  Pursue HIS VISION for us!!

So far, 40 people have responded.  And I am still praying!!  How about you??

Praying for this new day!!!

8 Nov

Ebenezer, I am praying for you on this new day!!  And hoping to hear from MANY OF YOU in the next few days about your intent to move forward with God and His plan for your life (and His plan for Ebenezer)!!

This morning I am still thinking about the fact that if we will work hard on our spiritual health, God will take care of everything else.  He told us in Matthew if we would seek Him first and His righteousness, everything else would be added!!  I completely believe He means it!!!

However, we did not get here overnight.  And we will not get it fixed overnight.  So as we seek INSTANT GRATIFICATION on this, we need to remember God will handle it in His timing!!

So I sit here in my den praying for you and our church on this new day!!  I hope you will join me in praying for it, too!

At the end of the day …

7 Nov

If you were unable to be in worship at EBC this morning, I’ve posted a link to the sermon.  I really think you will want to sit down and watch it.  All the way through.  There is something special at the end, but you will only get it if you watch the entire thing!!

The link is:

Another random thought I had after deacon’s meeting tonight:

If we will focus on the SPIRITUAL HEALTH of our church the money will take care of itself.  If we will work on what really matters, GOD WILL TAKE CARE OF THE MONEY!!  Test Him and see!!!

I am praying for you, church.  I’ve already heard from some of you and hope to hear from many more!!

Stay classy, Florence!!!

A Deep Thought

5 Nov

Better save this one … I don’t often have deep thoughts.

This week, I’ve done EVERYTHING on my iPad. All of my communication and social media (with the exception of a few tweets from my phone), wrote my sermon, kept in touch with the election and local news. The ONLY things I cannot do with this device are access Flash sites: Unfortunately, several of the video sites I use still use Flash. Hope that changes.

Because, if it did, I really could do EVERYTHING I DO from my iPad!! When I bought this iPad, I also bought a bluetooth Mac keyboard, which has made all of this much easier.

That boggles my mind. In its current configuration, there are a few things that make it necessary for me to have a desktop at work. But the day will come when something like this will be my primary computer.

Coming from a old-timer that got into this stuff in the mid ’80s, that is REALLY COOL. If I could go back to myself in college and show this, I wouldn’t believe me. (But, that is partially because I know me and, well, probably shouldn’t get into that).

And I glance over at my iPhone and wonder how long it will be before I am blogging this same type of thought about that???