Category Archives: From the Pastor’s Pen

Vacation is Over!

Our vacation ended Sunday evening as we made our way back home ending our nearly two thousand mile jaunt. We began two weeks ago by traveling to Pine Bluff where we attended a Baptist church for the Sunday evening service. The pastor preached from Daniel 5 where he exhorted us to focus on serving the Lord where we are. {He made a very interesting observation as he pointed out that every time that Daniel was needed, they had to go find him} He didn’t run with the in crowd that was hanging out.  We drove the next day to Biloxi, MI staying two nights in a Bed and Breakfast home where we shared our faith and God’s blessings in our life.

We enjoyed a trip to the beach and outstanding sea food!  Monday night while we experienced an earthquake that was recorded as an 2.8 magnitude.  It was pretty exhilarating!  Then Wednesday we drove on to Pensacola, FL to the community of Milton and stayed with Buck and Sue, Family, what a blessing to a long trip!  We relaxed and refreshed {what a great hot tub!} and they took us out to the beach and fed us more sea food {their home cooking was far better than restaurant cooking!}.  We enjoyed every minute of our time with them!  Then we drove almost straight north to Joey and Adrian’s place in Morris, just north of Birmingham, AL where we stayed through Monday morning.

We were excited to get to worship with them in their home church, a Missionary Baptist church, but I was greatly disappointed that their pastor was on vacation!  I know so was I, but I wanted to hear him!  The young man who filled the pulpit was full of excitement and thrust, but just didn’t hit the mark….I was so disappointed, but understand that once I too was young, excited, untrained…but still, I wanted to, well, you know….

We headed home Monday stopping in Fayetteville, AR to have supper with Carolyn’s older brother, Perry. We had a great desire to see Tara Ross, to be some comfort to her in her great loss of her brother Sawyer.

I worked around the home place Tuesday {and had coffee with the guys at the church} then Wednesday evening we visited a large Broken Arrow Baptist church hoping for a Bible Study and were greatly disappointed that the preacher ‘takes off’ during the summer months and they have only auxiliary meetings…no place of general gathering of the church to hear God’s Word preached!

After Sawyer’s funeral Friday in Chelsea, we left for OKC to see Carolyn’s brother Paul and family and then on to Duncan to see my sister Helen and husband Gary who graciously allowed us to stay with them to make the drive to Springer, OK and the Springer Missionary Baptist Church where John Wiley allowed me to fill his pulpit {I just know there were people there who thought the same as I did at Morris…who is this guy?!} I appreciate the invitation to get to proclaim the Word in other places.

Now Monday morning we are home ready to get back to the task at hand….thank you for the time off!

Bro. Wayne

 

Time for Refreshing

It has been an exhausting year!  I can hardly believe that we have long passed the middle point of 2017 and are about to enter into the eighth month of the year!  It has been three months since Carolyn’s death experience and our upheaval of understanding of how fragile life is and how amazing our God is as he gives us another opportunity for living…God is so good!

Now in the midst of the year I have a desire to withdraw for a season to refresh!  Although I have made no certain plans, I do intend to take a couple of weeks off to reset.  I am not sure where we will go or even what we will do, but to vacate seems important for me if not imperative.  I will not be in the pulpit two Sundays August 6&13 and will return Wednesday August 16.  Daniel will fill the pulpit while I am gone.

One of the greatest blessings of my life has been the call of God especially as I get to express His gift of preaching.  If it were only preaching I think I could go on forever, but it is the conflict of leading people that is the constant stress and heartache.  Paul expressed it very well when the Spirit led him to write about his afflictions while serving the Lord and while remembering those difficult obstacles, he wrote that which every pastor has felt: ‘Beside those things that are without, that which cometh upon me daily, the care of all the churches.  Who is weak, and I am not weak? who is offended, and I burn not If I must needs glory, I will glory of the things which concern mine infirmities.’ II Corinthians 11:28 -30

I think Daniel in last evening’s study of Mark put it very well…The Lord chooses you…you do not choose Him.  None of the Apostles was up to the task which he was called to fulfill, but when God calls He equips those whom He has ordained to be able to accomplish the task he has been called to perform.  ‘And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.’  Galatians 6:9&10

I am looking forward to a few days of refreshing and relaxing, hoping to catch my wind.  It has been a very difficult year.

Looking forward to seeing you Wednesday or sooner….

Bro. Wayne

 

 

Praise God From Whom All Blessings Flow

What an amazing life I have been blessed to live!  Born in Wichita, Kansas in the hot summer days of 1948 to a WWII veteran and his wife who would stay married until death parted them in 1973.  Raised in a financially poor but stable family where family was first and the rest of life after…My parents saw that I was in Sunday school and Church every Sunday for the first eleven years of my life {setting forth a foundation that lasts to this day}. Dad worked me hard at home and in the newspaper business, took me fishing, camping and hunting instilling in me life principles of work, play skills and fairness that has guided me as a child, spouse, parent, and pastor.

My childhood was unique to the time and I am wise enough to know that time is over and can never be recaptured; yet in my heart of hearts I have tried to instill those same values in my children with the added virtue of the Word of God.

I cannot tell you how it grieves me to see the children and youth of our day being ruined by the lack of spiritual instruction, the influence of a godless society and absent parents who care more about their own feelings and needs than that of their children.   Dads who have no time for their children, Moms who have exchanged the unredemptive time with their children for a job that allows them life’s extravagance’s when there is no greater joy or purpose in life than seeing the children God has entrusted you with grow in grace and knowledge.  Time is too short and can never be redeemed….

Finally, I have been allowed to be what God has called me to be: A husband, father and pastor; A wife who loves the Lord supremely, and me secondly.  Children who have risen up and called me blessed:  For the past forty – three years living a dream few have known as I have seen God provide for my family and serve Him in His Church.  To be loved {and yes, hated} for strong stands I have taken for Him, acknowledging my frailty’s, not always being right, but always sincere.  Truly God has blessed and I would not exchange one day of this life God has given for any life I know.

                Now, why you say, are you writing this?  Sometimes I need to remind myself of how good I really have it! And some need to know I know it!

We sing ‘God is so Good’ yet don’t realize how good we really have it.

Praise God from Whom all blessings flow…Praise Him all creatures here below…Praise Him all ye heavenly host!  Praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost…..AMEN!

As my dear friend, George Daniels, who is now with Jesus would say: “God is Good….all the time!”

I hope you too will realize just how good we have it before it is gone… Ecclesiastes 12:1Remember now thy Creator in the days of thy youth, while the evil days come not, nor the years draw nigh, when thou shalt say, I have no pleasure in them;’

Bro. Wayne

Stuff…Everywhere I Look: Stuff

I woke up this morning to the light.  It is usually still dark when I awake so I must have had a good night’s rest!  It was 5:49 so I just lay there thinking and praying about my day today.  I take off Monday afternoons when possible and today I really need it as I must mow the lawn and move things that are in the way, deciding if we will keep them or cast them away…one Scripture I have trouble with: Ecclesiastes 3:6A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;’ That casting away deal is a real problem as I might need it again some day??

Contrary to popular use {at least in my experience} garages are for cars; not junk; and yet my garage cannot be used for its original purpose because I have failed in the Scriptural admonition to use the ‘time to cast away’…so my garage and workshop are filled with ‘Stuff’ which also is a good Biblical term: Genesis 45:20Also regard not your stuff; for the good of all the land of Egypt is yours.’ Joseph knew his father and his proclivity to keep ‘stuff’ that he didn’t need.

Am I going somewhere with this?  Yep, I am.  I walked through our buildings this past week and took notice that we still have winter jackets hanging on hooks at our entries, classrooms are acquiring items {stuff} that have no use in teaching the Bible or making class time better.  We have two empty classrooms that are not presently in use and they have become a ‘catch all’ for ‘stuff’.  If there is a room large enough to ‘store stuff’ then it has it!  You really ought to go into the library and flower room to appreciate my article today!

My aim and goal for the remainder of July is to eliminate ‘stuff’ in my life that I do not need and in the process I thought it would be good for all of us to look at the ‘stuff’ in the buildings and see if it belongs to someone and if it is not needed to eliminate it from our lives!

Actually I started last Friday by setting two old bikes that had been stored in my barn for years.  I aired up the tires and set them by the street.  Carolyn put a sign that said: ‘Free Bikes’ they were gone within an hour! I also gathered up multiple old paint cans that had long since dried up along with other ‘stuff’ and trashed them.

Boy do I have some ‘stuff’ to get rid of….you might drive by my place this week and see if some of my ‘stuff’ should be in your garage?!   And if you think some of your ‘stuff’ might still be lost in some nook or cranny of the church building, come look and take it home with you…or it might be gone!

Here is the condition ‘stuff’ takes on when neglected: ‘So Ebedmelech took the men with him, and went into the house of the king under the treasury, and took thence old cast clouts and old rotten rags, and let them down by cords into the dungeon to Jeremiah.’  Jeremiah 38:11

Ah, yes…to see the floor again!

Bro. Wayne

 

The Wonder of Preaching

Sunday evening my brother Buck shared with us his view of what is going on in the Church today.  He presented to us a unique view of not only what is going on, but what to expect when you get there.  I sure enjoyed our time with him and Sue.  The message on Rest that he preached Sunday morning was much needed by me.  Thank you Buck and Sue for placing us on your schedule as you passed through!

I Timothy 6:20O Timothy, keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called:’

Here is what Matthew Henry {who lived 1662-1714 a.d.}: ‘Every minister is a trustee, and it is a treasure committed to his trust, which he has to keep. The truths of God, the ordinances of God, keep these, avoiding profane and vain babblings; not affecting human eloquence, which the apostle calls vain babbling, or human learning, which often opposes the truths of God, but keep close to the written word, for that is committed to our trust. Some who have been very proud of their learning, their science, which is falsely so called, have by that been debauched in their principles and been drawn away from the faith of Christ, which is a good reason why we should keep to the plain word of the gospel, and resolve to live and die by that.’

One of the most difficult things I have dealt with in my years of ministry is wanting to be accepted by the educated crowd.  When I am around highly educated people who are diametrically opposed to the truth of the Word of God, I don’t want to appear as if I am picking a fight, but when their ignorance of the Word of God is displayed by their ‘science falsely so called’ I cannot keep my mouth shut!

I visited with one such man that is not only well educated, but is also very wealthy and well traveled.  When he told me that he disagreed with Paul and even some of the things Jesus said, well, everything inside of me wanted to be his friend and dismiss his statements as just Biblical ignorance.  BUT that is not in me and as I spoke to him of ‘sin, righteousness and judgment’ It seems I appeared to be a bumpkin to him and did not change his mind.

There is good from our standing firm as God proves His Word through time…we will be good ministers of His:

I Timothy 4:6  ‘If thou put the brethren in remembrance of these things, thou shalt be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished up in the words of faith and of good doctrine, whereunto thou hast attained.’

I am reminded of Daniel as recorded in Daniel chapter 1 that he was ‘skilled in science and became chief over all the wise men’ because he knew and stood for the principles of God’s Word.

Dear Lord, please raise up a generation of Daniels to stand for Thy Word and let us be part of that…..In Jesus’ Name…

 

Bro. Wayne

Just Exactly What Did You Mean By That?!

Philippians 2:14-16 ‘Do all things without murmurings and disputings: That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world; Holding forth the word of life; that I may rejoice in the day of Christ, that I have not run in vain, neither laboured in vain.’

I found the following story in my e-mail inbox this past week and came to the conclusion that I have met this lady…..in every church I have been pastor:

Church Gossip

Mildred, the church gossip and self-appointed monitor of the church’s morals, kept sticking her nose into other people’s business. Several members did not approve of her activities, but feared her enough to maintain their silence.

She made a mistake, however, when she accused Frank, a new member, of being an alcoholic after she saw his old pickup parked in front of the town’s only bar one afternoon.

She emphatically told Frank (and several others) that everyone seeing it there would know what he was doing! Frank, a man of few words, stared at her for a moment and just turned and walked away. He didn’t explain, defend, or deny. He said nothing.

Later that evening, Frank quietly parked his pickup in front of Mildred’s house, walked home, and left it there all night.   (You gotta love Frank!)

Now this story is kinda funny if you think about it, but the reality is that it is not funny at all….these kinds of people have always been in the congregation of the Lord and have always caused uproar and confusion in the Family of God!  Here are a few pointed Scriptures as examples:

Numbers 12:1-15; I Corinthians 10:1-11; John 6:36-43; Jude 1:14-16.

Now take time to read these verses…it is possible that you might see yourself in these admonitions…if you look closely!

God help us to not be those who cause trouble by ‘sticking our nose’ into things that do not pertain to us.

One last thought: The idea of being a gossip or backbiter is thought to be a nominal sin…but here is what the Scripture says: Proverbs 6:16-19These six things doth the LORD hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him:  A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, An heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief, A false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren.’

If there be any virtue, if there be any praise, let us think on these things….

Bro. Wayne

 

The Light of the World is Jesus

You know summer has begun when graduation ceremonies are finished {Saturday evening we celebrated the achievements of our students that have graduated} and Camps begin {twenty two of our adults and youth left this morning at 7:15 for Falls Creek} and the banner is posted in the front lawn announcing Vacation Bible School {it is there}.  Yes, summertime activities have begun…

A week ago we celebrated Memorial Day with a picnic and last evening while listening to Bro. Daniel share his mission trip with Nora and little Esther to Kobe, Japan , we shared in another hot dog and sandwich supper…we sure know how to eat around this place!  What an interesting trip they shared with pictures of places most of us will never see in person but became familiar as we relate them to the lost ness of a whole people group.  Japan remains the least evangelized nation where the Gospel has been preached!  It was obvious last evening that Daniel brought home a burden for them and made it known to us!  Pray with us that God would use their efforts to reach those souls that would carry on the message that was shared with them.

It was a joy for me to share the message Sunday morning of Jesus Christ the Great High Priest!  What a Savior!  My favorite verse in the text was Hebrews 7:25Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.’  This is truth!  God sent His Only Begotten Son that WHOSOEVER would believe in Him would not perish, but have everlasting life.

I could not help but think how simple the message of Salvation is as Daniel was sharing the pictures of countless people standing in line waiting to ring the bell to wake their god so they could make petition to a false deity!  Yet there in our Text Sunday morning is the answer to all their needs: ‘But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus. Now unto God and our Father be glory for ever and ever. Amen.’ Philippians 4:19&20 And what is amazing is that He stands ready for whosoever to call upon Him in their time of need! ‘Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.’ Hebrews 4:16

Yes, we serve a Mighty God that sent His Son to save the whole world: ‘And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.’ I John 2:2  The amazing part is that we carry this message in our hearts and lives!  Why won’t you share the Love of God with those around you …and make the difference in someone’s life today?

Bro. Wayne

 

 

Closing Thoughts From Sunday Afternoon

Sunday afternoon, after our picnic lunch I took the second chapter of II Thessalonians and preached a short message on The Rapture of the Church.  The following is what will happen after the Church is taken out of the world:

CONCERNING THE ANTICHRIST Revelation 13

  1. THE CAUSE FOR WORLD FOLLOWING: v.5
  2. FIRST AND FOREMOST: BECAUSE GOD SAID IT WOULD:

[1] God will give him the power: “…there was given him a mouth speaking..”

[2] Those who rejected Christ will believe a

lie:

II Thessalonians 2:11&12 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.”

[3] Many shall depart from the faith: That is: those deceived, believing that they were saved, will no longer remain…disillusioned they will depart:

I Timothy 4:1 now the spirit speaks expressly…”

[4] False Christ’s shall rise: Matthew 24:5and shall deceive many…”

  1. POWER WAS GIVEN TO HIM: To continue for 42 months {3½ years}  … Daniel 9:27
  2. THE CAUSE FOR THE WORLD CHURCH REJECTION: v.6

This is the False Church of Revelation 17

  1. BLASPHEMY AGAINST GOD: They will have great respect for “the man upstairs…”
  2. BLASPHEMY AGAINST HIS NAME:

The Antichrist will want his own name exalted.

  1. BLASPHEMY AGAINST GOD’S TABERNACLE: The Antichrist will show his true nature concerning Heaven.
  2. BLASPHEMY AGAINST THEM: That dwell in heaven:  THE SAINTS:

There will be a rejection of the Antichrist by the Harlot church of the world. It is at this point satan will take complete control and show his true nature of a thief, killer and destroyer: John 10:10The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.’

Well, without commentary, that is what I lacked for the afternoon service.  Believe it or not it represents approximately fifteen minutes of explanation.  Let it suffice to say that the Antichrist; the devil’s top man, will soon appear on the world scene and we will be gone.  The church that is left is given a name by our Lord found in Revelation 17:1.

But for those of us who are waiting ‘the soon appearing of our Great God and Savior Jesus Christ’ We will be taken out of this world into Heaven… {hence the Rapture}  just before the antichrist begins his wicked work!

I’m glad I belong to Jesus!  Do you?

Bro. Wayne

Thoughts of Summer

For years I have marked the beginning of summer as Memorial Day right along with most of the country.  But today I want to take a moment to remember….

My first year of school began September of 1954 the Tuesday after Labor Day.  All schools started after Labor Day in those days and ended the second week of May.  I just remember that I started to school in the heat and ended hot as we had no air conditioners or fans…just any breeze that would come through the windows.  My first through fourth grade years were spent at Yukon.  Every thing was simple and straight forward…to me anyway!  My mom and dad fought the battles for me.  The school wanted urine samples brought to school in a clean pop bottle…I didn’t even know why.. and it was to be left in the cloak room.  Then came the small pox vaccination {mine didn’t take} and then they wanted us to take the polio vaccination; a drop of something on a sugar cube.  Mom said no! As she was fearful of the paper that declared a certain amount of those taking it would contract polio…a dreaded disease of that day.  I remember the days changing from extreme heat to extreme cold from October through February.  There were few weather reports in those days, the skies were watched and mom would say I should take a coat because ‘it looked like a cold front was coming in’ and she was usually right!

Lunch at school was amazing as I had to sit in class and smell fresh bread cooking and the excitement of recess after lunch.  One of my favorite times was when it was cold I would go on the south side of the building and sit in the sun, out of the cold air and watch the clouds roll overhead.

When the summer time arrived and I would take off my shoes before I went to class {remember I was only six to nine years old} I did not realize my teacher thought we could not afford shoes and boy! Did my parents deal with me….School…those days are gone, sixty three years ago since.  The simplicity of life with all decisions made by someone else…hmmm?  Wonder if I truly enjoyed them as much as I should have?

School ends in the next few days for most of our children; then the wonder of summer begins!  Vacation Bible School, camp, days of playing and wonder.

I wonder if heaven will be any better than that.  I think so… and those days are in view!

Have a fruitful happy summer and remember the admonition from Jeremiah 8:20 ‘The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved.’ Spend time seeking the Lord while He may be found.

Bro. Wayne

Mother’s Day Came Early!

It has been some sort of week!  Our family rallied around their mother and has come ministering to her and me like some sort of movie!  Carolyn’s health has been fragile for some time and after a brain bleed and heart attack it was impossible to think that something worse could happen…but it did.

Now a week and two days later life has returned to whatever ‘normal’ is.  It was Erma Bombeck who said that ‘Normal is just a setting on a dryer’ and truly for our family that stands out as fact.

I truly appreciate you, our extended family, allowing us to have a pre Mother’s Day service for our mother.  For the first time in ages all of our children were together in one place…all nine of them!  They came from as near as across the street from our home to as remote as Alaska, Hawaii and Alabama to honor their mom and to celebrate her life that was given back to us. As daughters and granddaughters sang with their Mom {grammy} I was overwhelmed with emotion! I do not take lightly your heart and spirit as you celebrated with us.  Thank you!

The days ahead will be tenuous at best as we watch her health and cheer her on.  My attention has always been toward her and then toward my work as pastor.  In the past she got the leftovers of my time and attention and always willingly gave up her desire for the sake of the work of God in the church.  Now my plan is to focus more upon her and hopefully the work of the church can go on without my constant involvement and work.  I will still be available for any crisis need and make whatever decisions and outreach/inreach visits that need to be made, as well as being prepared to ‘Preach the Word’, but the constant day to day activities will be cut back somewhat to accommodate Carolyn’s needs.  It is my hope that we can balance the two and finish my ministry to God’s church family called Rehoboth.  Only time will tell.  Meantime, please call the church office for any need you have and we will do our best to reach out to you.

Next Sunday is Mother’s Day and I can tell you from our latest experience that Mom holds most families together.  Without their love and care the family just isn’t the same!  We plan to honor our mothers this coming Sunday from God’s Word.  I hope you will come celebrate with us God’s great gift to this world…..your Mom.

Bro. Wayne