Enjoying the Journey

It was only after I went into full time evangelism that I began to appreciate how much good preaching I had been privileged to listen to…and how much I still need to hear it. Those of us in full time ministry are almost always the ones doing the preaching. While this is a tremendous privilege, it is also a great danger. If you keep giving out and never take in you will soon run dry! I am not just a preacher; I am a Christian. Every Christian needs to hear exhortation, reproof, and doctrine. Every Christian.  There are many reasons for this: God chose to use preaching! 1 Corinthians 1:21 tells us the priority God places on preaching and its…

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Everyone’s favorite verse to quote in recent times has been, “But evil men and seducers shall wax worse and worse, deceiving, and being deceived” (2 Timothy 3:13). While this is absolutely true and evidently happening I would encourage you to read the next verse: “But continue thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of, knowing of whom thou hast learned them” (2 Timothy 3:14). We must never use the condition in our world as an excuse for our own faithlessness and fruitlessness. When the Lord said that wickedness would abound more and more He did not say that His power would wax less and less! CONTINUE! As we begin a new year this must be…

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Last night I preached in a tent meeting on “It’s Prayer Time In America.” Yes, these are turbulent times, political times, chaotic times, dark times – but, for the people of God, it is prayer time! If ever there was a nation and a generation that needed to seek the Lord it is ours…and it is now.  I am especially excited about the 2020 Southwide Baptist Fellowship. This gathering is simply a time for preachers to hear preaching, encourage one another, and pray together. (View the full schedule of speakers now.) The theme this year is “And When They Had Prayed” from Acts 4:31. Like the early church, the situation today is critical but God is able. Throughout history when…

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This is hard for me. The lives of so many faithful ministers have ministered to me through the years! Yet as I look at my shelves and consider the ones that have had the greatest impact on my life there are a few that stand out. Hudson Taylor and Maria by J.C. Pollock (We all know the story of the pioneer missionary Hudson Taylor, but do you know the story of his wife? Maria’s partnership with her husband allowed the China Inland Mission to reach China with the gospel. Read this book.) A Passion for Souls by Lyle W. Dorsett (There are hundreds of books written on the life and ministry of D.L. Moody but this volume has been one…

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It is a great privilege to stand and preach God’s Word to others. In fact, it is a high and holy calling that should never be taken for granted! Preachers who are serious about what God has given them to do will not only work on sermons, they will work on themselves. You cannot separate the message from the messenger. When I had the privilege of teaching homiletics to college young people we used a well known classic, Biblical Preaching by Haddon Robinson in the undergraduate program. Currently I am helping to facilitate an online graduate level course and we are using Preaching and Preachers by Martin Lloyd-Jones and Lectures to My Students by Charles Spurgeon. All of these are…

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One of the great desires that I have is to get helpful resources to those who are laboring faithfully in God’s work. There is no lack of available resources, but there is often a dearth of trustworthy ones. That is why I enjoy partnering with other likeminded ministers to develop tools for Bible study and gospel work. I am excited to share with you a brand new podcast that has been designed with one goal in mind: to edify and encourage Christian workers.  Each Labor Day my friend Pastor Scott Hooks and I co-host The Rest conference in Hickory, NC. This is not a meeting for preachers to come and take a nap (although that is a good idea!). It…

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Long before I was a preacher I was a sinner. We would like to think that this changes over time, but I am still a sinner! One of God’s great preachers said it best: “O wretched man that I am!” (Romans 7:24). For sure, we should be sinning less but we are not sinless. Only Christ is that. Sometimes in the busyness of ministry, surrounded by so much religious context, we are prone to forget how wicked our hearts truly are. The flesh never gets better. It cannot be trusted. Deep within the most holy man is the unholy current of sin. There is in ALL of us a rebel heart. Sometimes it even comes out clothed in “preacher talk”…

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Augustus Toplady, author of the great hymn “Rock Of Ages,” was twenty-eight years old when he spent an afternoon in London with an older preacher whom he admired greatly. The advice that an aged Mr. Brewer gave to that young minister has been passed along to me. I am amazed at its relevance to our day and reminded that times change but truth does not. Toplady was so affected by the counsel that he recorded Brewer’s words in his diary. I pass them along to you with a prayer that the Holy Ghost will help us all to apply them wherever we may serve. “I cannot conclude without reminding you, my young brother, of some things that may be of…

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“And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not” (Galatians 6:9). Weariness is common among workers. You cannot always put your finger on it – it may be physical, mental, emotional, spiritual – maybe a combination of different factors. Sometimes we must press through and work through the weary season. But sometimes it is best to come apart and rest awhile (Mark 6:31). We are just days away from The Preacher’s Rest and I want to encourage preachers and their wives to join us in Hickory, NC for this special time of refreshing. (Watch last year’s highlight video.) This year we will examine what is essential for ministers to keep…

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Tammy and I are very grateful for those who have ministered to us through the years. Ministers need ministered to as well! There are moments that the best thing you can do is slow down, refresh your own soul, and prepare for the next season of ministry. It is with this in mind that Pastor Scott Hooks and I began The Preacher’s Rest last year. We were so pleased at the great number of fellow preachers and their wives who joined us and are excited about this year’s gathering, Monday-Wednesday, September 2-4, 2019. What better time than Labor Day to “come apart” and find spiritual, mental, and physical renewal! This year we look forward to discussing the devotional life of…

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