Archive | September, 2016

Your words matter

6 Sep

Believe it or not!!  SOMEONE is listening to you!!  And your words make a difference, whether they be positive or negative.  They matter.

This weekend I was floored by a social media post from an owner of a small business in my town.  A post that I found offensive, and when he was challenged, it went from mild to wild.  My first thought was “If this is the kind of man he is, I do NOT want to do business with him.”  Then…  IMMEDIATELY … a situation came to mind about Ebenezer.  Some words were said in front of someone (by a MEMBER of our church), and this person walked away thinking “If THIS is an example of Ebenezer, that church has serious problems.”

TRUE STORY.

And it grieves me.  I often talk about how our presence in the community is a representation of Ebenezer AS WELL AS the Kingdom of God.

There is no defense for the things that were said.  I might think “Well, the one who was offended might be looking for an excuse to not attend and engage a church.”  But that doesn’t matter one bit.

I might argue that NO ONE at Ebenezer is perfect.  That we make mistakes, ALL OF US.  In fact, follow me around for a little while and see how imperfect I am!!  AND I AM THE PASTOR!!  But that is no excuse, either.

The truth is, YOUR WORDS MATTER.  MINE DO, TOO.  Who we are in our communities is who we are, period!

WHO ARE YOU?

Believe it

4 Sep

Lately, I am often reminded that I am an example.  A leader.  God has entrusted me to pastor and lead one of His most prize possessions …  HIS Church.  A local church.  One of many, but extremely important and loved by Him.

I have also been reminded there are some in my world that hope I am living an example that points to Him.  They take seriously the words Paul wrote in Hebrews 13 (as do I) and seek leaders who live for Christ … Who fear God.

WHAT A HUGE WEIGHT!!  WHAT A RESPONSIBILITY to live a life that is somehow worthy of emulation!!!  Honestly, it is impossible.

BELIEVE IT!!

It humbles me when I think there are some who want to follow an example I set.  Because, I KNOW how imperfect I am.  How weak I am.  Yet, I also know God has called me to live my best, not only because I am His disciple, but because I am a pastor.  I KNOW I am called to live an example that points to Him.  In spite of my failures and imperfections, I indeed pray that somehow people will see Him, how good He really is, and how merciful He can be through my life.  And that is tough.  Because I fail.  Because I fall.

So, yes, it does humble me when I realize I am called to be an example of Him.  And it frightens me to my core.

And, it should YOU as well (IF you are a disciple of Christ).  Yes, I am a pastor.  But if you are His child, YOU are called to be an ambassador right alongside ME (and the rest of the Church).  The world is looking at us to see if He is real.  And the truly frightening thought is they judge His reality by what they see in YOU and in ME.

BELIEVE IT!!!

Thanks be to God that we have the Holy Spirit to help us every step of the way.  NONE of us is perfect, and NONE of us ever will be on this side of eternity.  So how can we do it??

Proverbs 3:5-6!!

Trust God with all of our hearts, follow Him with everything that we are, and when we fall off the horse, get back up and get on!!!!  That is ALL we can do.  And if we approach life doing our best, praying He will bless and use it, and then allowing HIM to do what He can do with our offering of praise (OUR LIVES), He can make this work.  HE can take our best and work wonders all around us!!!  TO HIS GLORY!!

BELIEVE IT!!!!