Jesus said God is a spirit and they that worship Him must worship Him in spirit and in truth. What this says to me is that worship has to rise from deep inside of me. Often I ask myself if I'm a true worshiper. Is my heart truly devoted to adoring God with total...more >>
Happy Dependance Day!
It is a spectacularly beautiful summer afternoon here in Fredericksburg, and as I look across the pastoral valley, I am taken in by its beauty and its serenity and tranquility.
I am so grateful to our Father God that He calls us all to come...more >>
"All Hail The Power," Was written by Edward Perronet in 1779. This text has been translated into almost every language known to Christianity. Like his father, Perronet became a minister in the Anglican Church.
He soon left the Church of England to join the...more >>
Dear South Churchians,
I'm happy to report that God is on the move in our various church plants here in the U.S.A. and in India. As the world condition heats up so, it seems, His zeal is causing more and more folks to work while it is still day, to help usher in...more >>
"All Creatures of our God and King," was written 1225 by Giovanni Bernardone, better known as Francis of Assisi. He spent his life evangelizing, teaching, and doing all he could for the poor throughout Italy.
Francis was born in Assisi, Italy in 1182. In his...more >>
As an evangelical Christian, I believe God is sovereign and that He does what He wills and that nothing and no one can prevent Him from carrying out His plans.
Monday morning my three year old, Fiona, walked into the living room, gleeful as usual, and, upon daddy's request, recited her memory verse for the week. The interaction went something like this, "Hey Fiona, can you say your bible verse for daddy?" Her little three...more >>
My prayer for us this coming Sunday is simple: "Father show us Your Son! Allow us to see and bask in the glory of our righteous King. Prepare us Lord. Amen."
This Sunday we are planning to sing "Show Us Christ". It should be the last song before Paige delivers the...more >>
God has an eternal rest that's available to us by faith in His Son and it takes a greater than the temple to make it a reality. And that greater is Jesus Himself. I looked up in the dictionary and found some interesting definitions of the English word rest. One...more >>
This past week’s Proclaim message, Lord of the Sabbath, taken from Mathew 12:1-8 struck a cord of sadness within me. Jesus concluded his remarks to the Pharisees who were condemning His disciples for breaking the Sabbath by gleaning some wheat to satisfy their...more >>
We introduced a new song on Sunday called, "God Omniscient, God All Knowing." You may have noticed that this song contains many strong descriptions of God. As we were preparing for worship, Charlie and I started talking about the descriptive power in these lyrics....more >>
How Great Thou Art was written in 1886 by Swedish pastor, Carl Boberg. It was later translated into English and set to music by Stuart K. Hine in 1899.
It has been said that Boberg was inspired to write this text during a retreat to a country estate on the...more >>
We will be singing "Brethren We Have Met To Worship," this Sunday. As I was reading over the lyrics in an attempt to write a brief commentary or something "blog-worthy," it dawned on me... I don't have to add anything to these lyrics! I would simply like to ask a...more >>
Mary Magdalene approached her Lord's tomb early Sunday morning. Her hear sank as she drew near, seeing that the stone was rolled away. "They have come and taken my Lord's body away!" She ran to find Peter and John saying, "They have taken Jesus from the tomb! We...more >>
This Sunday is Palm Sunday. We will be celebrating the coming of our King and echoing the crying out of the Jews,...more >>
We talk a lot about 'worship' at proclaim on Sunday mornings. But leading our families in worship at home is just as important. Husbands, fathers, moms, single parents... are you leading your family in worship?
Hello South Church Family. It is my joy & privilege to share the collected reports of our various church plants. At present, I have letters from two of the four and am thrilled to say how faithfully our God is at work in these zealous and compassionate...more >>
Eugene M. Bartlett, Sr. is considered one of the founders of southern gospel music. He was born on Christmas Eve in 1885. Salvaged by Christ in his youth, Bartlett grew to become quite successful in business & music. In 1918 he founded the Hartford Music Company in...more >>
We plan to begin with O Worship The King this Sunday. In preparation, let's explore what it means to worship.
What a blessing Paige's sermon was this past Sunday. Fathers, I hope you were encouraged. I couldn't help but think of my two sons throughout the whole message. It was hard to hear as I thought back, realizing the influence I had on my sons, even when I didn't know...more >>
One of the songs we will sing this Sunday is "Behold Our God." This is what worship is all about. We turn our attention to Christ and behold Him. Though our desire is to ever behold Him, it never fails that we fail. But aren't you all the more grateful to know that...more >>
As we prepare our hearts to focus on Church Planting this Sunday, I thought it appropriate to consider some of the lyrics we will be singing:
We will be introducing a new song this Sunday titled, "Come Behold the Wondrous Mystery." It's an invitation to behold Christ! That's the point isn't it? Proclaiming in song, in prayer, and in Word (preaching) the Good News of Jesus Christ. Speaking from experience,...more >>
Is worship in song a matter of obedience? So what if we don't sing? What about the power of prayer in song? Do you pray powerfully in song?
In the book of Acts, God equips His Church with power through song.
By the rich mercy of Jesus Christ, John Newton--who once captained slave ships in Africa--was redeemed to preach the faith he long labored to destroy.
At the young age of 11, Newton followed his father's footsteps as a seaman. Stumbling through years of sin &...more >>
Be Thou My Vision was written by a sixth century Irish poet named Eochaid Forgaill. After he lost his sight from an intense study of Scripture, he was nicknamed Dallan, meaning little blind one. It's remarkable that the Light of The World blinded...more >>
Horatio G. Spafford was born in North Troy, New York, on October 20, 1828. A financially successful man, he loved Christ & His word. In 1871, Spafford made a large real estate investment on the shore of Lake Michigan. Within months, the Chicago Fire of 1871...more >>
I've recently joined Bible Study Fellowship. We are currently in John 11 where Jesus resurrects what was thought to be a smelly, decomposing Lazarus. Shortly before, Mary & Martha were beside themselves because it appeared their miracle-working Jesus arrived just a...more >>
When we pray, we often say things like, “Let Your Kingdom come.” But what does that mean in the lives of God's people?
How often do we arrive for corporate worship unprepared? More than we’d probably like to admit.
In 2017, I not only want to be prepared, but I want to be eager to worship our God... and to do all I can to help you the same. May the Lord so suit us with...more >>
Once again we are at that time of year when we traditionally wrap & unwrap gifts. That time of year when we give & receive. But a gift isn't a gift until it's been received. Have you received the...more >>
Would you answer that question by producing a birth certificate?
In line with His teaching in the Sermon on the Mount, we must be authentically Jesus', having entered the narrow gate, bound to His righteousness through true repentance, and by the...more >>
I was recently forwarded a good question that was addressed during Wednesday's devotional:
In other words, how should time together in an everyone-invited,...more >>
It is a particular blessing to be a part of this church family. We are blessed to have each other, our elders, and our pastor. Scripture encourages us to bear each other's burdens, and as such please allow me to ask you to pray this week (not that you don't...more >>
Christ the Prince of Peace never ceased from war, nor does He now.
Have you ever noticed that the letters of Paul seem to have been written with the point of a sword? Do his words in 2 Timothy 2.3 not knock you off your rocking chair?
Where is God's glory in watching loved ones wander through life without Christ even by...more >>
Frequently Anna and I get asked this question:
Last Saturday a group of South Church women met for food, fellowship and to hear from our guest speaker Yvonne Welch on her continuing series "Spiritual Rest in the...more >>
Some of my conversations of late have lead me to reconsider distinctions between Restore & Sustain. I try to remind/inform our church family of these basic ministries at least twice a year. Professionals say "That's not enough." Maybe they're right, but ministry...more >>
Have you ever chosen not to do something for God because you knew it would put a target on your back, inviting Satan to retaliate and wreak havoc in your life?
Job didn't know that his life was being recorded or that his suffering, sorrow & sadness would make the...more >>
This past Sunday during the "How Now Shall We Live" portion of the sermon, I couldn't help but note the look of confusion on lots of faces. I thought it...more >>
As Paige has been taking us through the dramatic presentation in the life of Joseph the past several weeks and as we have begun to take on the books of the Kings in our Sustain daily readings, I have become enamored at the absolute integrity of God’s message. We...more >>
Brrr, that cold wind! You feeling cold lately? Has the warmth of a more intense love for Jesus blown by? Do you feel distant & alone? I do at times. Maybe it's the blowing of the north wind? I say, "Let the winds blow!" These times devoid of tingly feelings or "Holy...more >>
I'll never forget when I first came to the realization that Jesus bled & died to wash away my sins. The enthusiasm, the love and excitement that I had for the things of the Spirit was really something glorious to behold. I was so fun to be around. The things of the...more >>
In Philippians 1:3-11, Paul demonstrates the heart of love for the brethren. Notice he first mentions his gratitude to Abba for their past & present fellowship in the Gospel, that fills him with joy as he remembers & prays for them.
Weekly, daily, God is growing a...more >>
As I began to read Psalm 121, verse 1 halted me from the start:
I don't believe the psalmist here was drawing inspiration from the mountains, but rather from the location...more >>
Well how about it? Do you? Do you love God with all your heart, soul, and strength? Do you want to? Me too. But...more >>
Charles Haddon Spurgeon was quite the preacher during the nineteenth century. (If you don't mind hip-hop, Shai Linne provides a short bibliography here: http://a.sctxt.org/OGv46N.) He attributed his success in the pulpit not to his education, not to his oratory...more >>
After Proclaim yesterday, I was asked a very good question that went something like this:
Though I sought to answer that question in the sermon, perhaps I was a bit too vague. I'm sorry... sort...more >>
Like many of you, I have a love/hate relationship with Facebook. I love the really helpful articles, videos, quotations, and posts made by those looking to better equip Christian disciples via Social Media. But, of course, I hate the worthless trivia and minutiae...more >>
"The tank's full. It just won't run!" As smoke billowed from under the hood, the mechanic inquired: "Well when was the last time you changed the oil?" The ignorant driver replied, "Uh, oil?"
As a recovering "church" kid, my default tendency is to look to Sunday...more >>
I heard a story once of a man who, after parking his car, set out for a day hike in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Three miles into what was to be a relaxing afternoon, he noticed ominous storm clouds forming as the temperature dropped dangerously. Realizing a freak...more >>
Prayer. I didn't always know it's power or it's importance or the intimacy to be shared through it. Not until I began relationships with people who DO it. Not until I started to DO it. Regularly. In the morning. Just God and me. With my husband. With our children....more >>
I'm so grateful to be a part of a church family that takes so seriously the mind set that they are the hands and feet of Jesus. My name is Susan and I was broken, in poor health, I hit a tree with my mother's car and totaled it, was too sick to work - no money...more >>
I came across two Greek words translated "anger" in the New Testament. The first is thumos, and refers to the anger I feel that causes a vein to bulge down the center of my forehead and my face to get all red. The word used in Matthew 5.22, however, is orgizo, a...more >>
Although I know better than this now, as a child I used to say, "When I get to Heaven, I'm going to sit on God's lap and and give Him a big hug." While I'm sure you may understand the sentiment in that, I think what we have with that concept is a faulty image, for...more >>
As Father's Day has been coming up I've been thinking about dads, and how I think we like to live our lives through our sons. I was no exception. When my son's were just two years old, I put swords in their hands and started teaching them how to battle. By the time...more >>
Every firstborn of a donkey you shall redeem with a lamb, or if you will not redeem it you shall break its neck... Exodus 13.13a
The only way a firstborn donkey could live was if a lamb was slain for it. I like this analogy because I know the lamb speaks of...more >>
"What the world needs now is love, sweet love. It’s the only thing that there’s just too little of." Written by Burt Bacharach almost forty-nine years ago, the song became one of the top-selling songs of the decade because it struck a chord in my generation....more >>
A few months ago, Chuck was telling me I would be blessed by being a part of a prison ministry. I have to say, I wasn't too interested. After all, I was feeling really comfortable in my comfort zone.
Have you ever discovered that, when you share with someone in...more >>
Blessings church family! Seeing Paige this past Sunday wearing his t-shirt with the word "fruit" on it reminded me of someone who once relayed a story to me of how he wanted to teach his kids a lesson on the vine and branches. He went out into his backyard, cut off...more >>
Hey church family! First of all thank you for your prayers.
I spend a lot of time thinking about God. You may have seen me around sitting on a parkbench here or there. I'm often at the corner of walk-and-don't-walk watching a busy world pass thru our town. I've...more >>
As I was reflecting upon John 3.1-15, Jesus' conversation with Nicodemus, I noticed Jesus forces us all to make a choice. Whether we are aware of this or not it is still very much a decision we will have to make. This, "Choice" takes place after we are born into...more >>
After several of our brothers read & began a very helpful discussion based on our sustain reading from Acts 14 ( http://know.gd/nt/2013-02-28 ), I felt prompted to write the following response. Suspecting that there may be others in our church family with similar...more >>
Based on the Scripture, two-thousand years of Church experience, and 38 of my own, I'm a firm believer that the Spirit of God more often marvels an onlooking world through--not our prosperity, but--our suffering, through our going without, and especially through our...more >>
My apologies if this interrupts your Christmas morning celebration, but I can't keep the joy to myself. I'll try to make this entry short, knowing that it will arrive on what I hope to be a very, merry Christmas morning!
I just wanted to thank all of you that...more >>
I cannot thank you enough for your prayers. They make a difference I can feel. I don't know how to describe it, but I assure you that I sense His presence more clearly when you pray, especially when you pray together.
A few weeks ago I felt like I was...more >>
Yesterday morning I received one of the best and most insightful rebukes I've ever received.
Last Sunday, toward the end of the sermon, I spoke briefly about the apathy of Adam as he didn't step in to defend Eve as she was being molested by Satan; 'rape' was the...more >>
At the probing of the Lord, a question from a brother, and the last few weeks with Jonah (the pitiful prophet), I woke this morning with some things on my heart & mind that I wanted to share with my brothers & sisters in the hope of encouraging our mission with...more >>