Enjoying the Journey

I rarely post on the Lord’s day, but this Sunday is an unusual day for many churches and church members. Social media has been filled this week with updates, instructions, and explanations from pastors and Christian leaders about the current pandemic and the varied responses. These are challenging days for those who have been called to guide God’s people in a church, school, or ministry. They are challenging days for us all! Perhaps your church is not meeting this week as normal – or perhaps it is. Either way there are a few things all of God’s people can do for the work of God where they are… Pray for your pastor. All who lead need divine wisdom. This is…

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There is a lot of negative talk in this world. Social media has only amplified it. Sadly, many believers use their social media just like those who do not know God. Disagreements are aired for the world to see. Accusations are thrown flippantly. Complaining is the norm. “My brethren, these things ought not so to be” (James 3:10). Social media is not going away. For sure there are checks and balances that we all should place on the amount of time we give to it and the type of content we post on it. Perhaps the greatest thing we can do is learn to use it for good and for God. When social media platforms are engaged in things that…

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1801-16 Enjoying the Journey Guest Articles Slide

Dr. Mike Edwards served for 37 years as the pastor of the Heritage Baptist Church in Woodbridge, VA. He is a man of wisdom and a great encouragement to those who are serving the Lord. I am very grateful to call him my friend and happy to pass along this helpful article. He and his wife are now traveling in ministry, seeking to encourage other churches and couples in the Lord’s work. You may find more information on their work at sharepointministries.com. As a younger pastor I am not sure I was fully prepared for just how critical some people could be concerning my leadership and my service. After forty-three years of ministry I have now come to understand that criticism is part of the servant leader’s life. Ministry life is truly life in…

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Today I have the opportunity to preach to a wonderful group of preachers. My heart is to encourage them. Thank the Lord for faithful ministers! Like their Chief Shepherd they live “not to be ministered unto, but to minister.” Yet in the midst of busy lives and labors ministers must pause long enough to minister to their own inner man. Too often while Christian workers are building the kingdom they are tearing down their own souls. It was for this purpose that Pastor Scott Hooks and I hosted The Preacher’s Rest last year in Hickory, North Carolina. The response was overwhelming. We had a wonderful time of fellowship, study, and prayer with so many preachers and their wives. Our desire…

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Many years ago my pastor taught me that if you are a blessing to the preacher you have a part in helping all of those that he helps. God uses faithful preachers to teach us the Word of God. He uses faithful people to encourage the preacher. The Apostle Paul said it this way: “Let him that is taught in the word communicate unto him that teacheth in all good things” (Galatians 6:6). This should begin in your own church and with the man the Lord has called to shepherd you and your family. Spiritual believers should seek to minister to the minister! In just a few days Tammy and I have the privilege of helping to host a number…

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1801-16 Enjoying the Journey Guest Articles Slide

Mark Fowler and his wife Stephanie have been special friends to me and Tammy since college. The Lord is using them to lead a growing church in Elizabethton, TN. We had the privilege to be there again recently and were so blessed. His guest post and the available resource will be a help to many. Thanks for reading! Please share it with others… Is it possible to live in two worlds at once? As a child of God we live each day in the reality of two worlds. We know the Bible teaches us that we are a citizen of heaven and that we are pilgrims in this world. The daily struggle we face is that this world is all…

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This is the time of year when so many people become sluggish. Schedules are hectic. The newness of the new year has worn off and the freshness of spring has not yet arrived. Weather is wearying. Illness is rampant. Christmas vacation has long since vanished and summer vacation seems far in the distance. For all of you who have such thoughts and feelings (like we all do at times!) I share two simple words: PRESS ON. That’s it. Sometimes the greatest thing you do is simply put one foot in front of another. Be faithful. As the old retired marine in our church used to say, “Stay at your post of duty.” PRESS ON. God has His eye on you.…

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There are a few men who are admired by believers of all backgrounds. These are special men. Men who make an impact far outside their immediate realm of influence. They are the encouragers. People who do not agree on many things often agree that these men helped them along the journey. Preachers and churches of varying sizes and circles of fellowship all want to lay claim on such men. When they are gone they are missed by everyone who was blessed to cross their path. For sure, God gives every man a different kind of ministry. Some men, like the Old Testament prophets, are called on to wound. Others are called on to heal. Some are notable for their pulpit…

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Someone said to me not long ago, “You must really love to travel!” Anyone who has spent much time on the road will tell you that the initial thrill and adventure wears off fairly quickly. Something else has to keep you going. Life itself is a journey – full of goodbyes, unexpected circumstances, and change. These realities can be both frustrating and sad. How do you keep moving forward? The way to deal with departures, delays, and detours is to keep your heart set on the destination! Sometimes the road is long. Some days the journey is tiring. But Someone is waiting for you at the end. My response to my friend was this, “I don’t always love to travel but I…

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The other day I wrote a short post about how the devil loves to use our words to tear others down. Permit me to share the positive side of this truth: the Lord desires to use our words to build others up! The Scripture says, “Speak not evil one of another, brethren” (James 4:11). But it also declares, “Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.” (Ephesians 4:29). Yes, we are to withhold unkind and hurtful words. Yet how many days we sin against others by withholding kind and helpful words! It is not enough that we do not criticize or accuse.…

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