30 Years Later


This is something I wrote thirty years ago, and I find it interesting that back then, I thought I was seeing a lot of changes in the world. How much more have there been changes and an acceleration in the rate of change since I was in my 20’s!

I never thought I would see the day when

-Gay marriage was legalized.

-Men would be allowed at some places in women’s restrooms.(and vice versa)

-Disney would be producing things for children that would portray same sex relationships as normal

-Our government here in the U.S. would begin to shift from democracy to socialism.

 

and the list goes on.

 

In a world that is changing rapidly, one thing has not changed.

 

Hebrews 13:8  Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.

In a world that is very unstable, Jesus is the One who is stable and unchanging.

The prophet Isaiah wrote in chapter 33 and verse 6,

And wisdom and knowledge shall be the stability of thy times, and strength of salvation: the fear of the LORD is his treasure.

Although I haven’t studied it out, so I’m not sure what time period Isaiah was talking about here, I do know where we can find the kind of wisdom and knowledge that will give us stability.

 

Colossians 2:1-3  For I would that ye knew what great conflict I have for you, and for them at Laodicea, and for as many as have not seen my face in the flesh;
That their hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and unto all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgement of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ;
In whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

I’m grateful we have a God that never changes. We can have a stability and a peace in Jesus in spite of the ungodly things transpiring in our world. Thank God we have an anchor in Him!

 

 

 

PCC-Making An Eternal Difference

  


Rom 12:2  And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.

Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect. NLT

 

There is an unseen battle that takes place everyday in the lives of those who are truly striving to live their lives in accordance with the Bible, God’s Word. We will either succumb to the pressures that this world hurls against us and conform to ungodliness or we will be transformed in our minds, that our behavior might be pleasing to God. This battle can be especially intense for young people who are in their formative years and are making choices and decisions that will determine who they are and ultimately, where they will spend eternity.

I am so thankful for Pacific Coast Camp, which I was privileged to be able to attend last week with my family and other members andoung people from our church. I can’t remember the exact number of campers (ages 7-25) that were there, but I know it was over 300. Most of the young people that attended have already received their initial salvation experience of repenting of sin, being baptized in the name of Jesus and receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost with the evidence of speaking in other tongues. However, there is a whole lot more to living for God than obeying Acts 2:38. We still have a sinful nature to contend with and a devil that does all he can to hinder our salvation experience from becoming a growing and wonderful relationship with Jesus Christ. At Pacific Coast Camp, young people were given an opportunity to disconnect from the hindrances of technology(cell phones, ipads, ipods, MP3 players, etc.) and connect with God through the preaching of the Word, prayer, praise and good fellowship.

The teaching of Bro. Lackey each morning and the preaching of the good elders in the evening services was outstanding. It was so uplifting to see the response to each message as young people would flood to the altars to rededicate themselves to God. How helpful it is for young people as well, to see other youth from different churches who are endeavoring to live for God too. It is encouraging to know that you are not alone in choosing to walk in a way that is contray to the practices of this world.

I am grateful to the men that had the burden and vision to bring this camp into existence. This was the camp’s 10 year anniversary, and I believe it was our 6th year of being in camp with a group of young people from our church. There is much time, work and sacrifice involved in putting together such a powerful meeting, and I know God does reward and will reward those who played a part in it.

I believe the greatest reward will be seeing those that make it to heaven, because something they received at camp got embedded deep in their spirits, and they remained faithful. Thank God for Pacific Coast Camp!

A New Testament Memorial Day

Have you ever prayed for something for a long time and have just grown weary of praying?  Have you ever prayed and asked the question, “God, when are you going to bring it to pass?”   I wonder if Cornelius ever felt this way.  The Bible describes the character of Cornelius in Acts chapter 10 and verse 2.

 

A devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, which gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God alway.

  I looked up the word “prayed” in this verse in Strong’s Concordance and the meaning was to beg, beseech or petition.  It appears there was something that Cornelius was desperately seeking God for, and he did it on a continual basis.  The Bible doesn’t tell us exactly what Cornelius was praying for, but it does tell us there came a day when an angel of God appeared to him and told him that God remembered all the times that he had prayed.

Acts 10:3  He saw in a vision evidently about the ninth hour of the day an angel of God coming in to him, and saying unto him, Cornelius. Acts 10:4  And when he looked on him, he was afraid, and said, What is it, Lord? And he said unto him, Thy prayers and thine alms are come up for a memorial before God. 

 

 Although we may not know exactly what Cornelius prayed for, we do have the record of how God chose to answer his prayers.

 

Act 10:5  And now send men to Joppa, and call for one Simon, whose surname is Peter: Act 10:6  He lodgeth with one Simon a tanner, whose house is by the sea side: he shall tell thee what thou oughtest to do. 

 

 Cornelius was told to send for Peter and that Peter would tell him what he needed to do.  Cornelius was about to have his Memorial Day!  In the meantime, God was preparing Peter to be the answer to Cornelius’ prayer as he showed him a vision and then sent 3 men to Peter who would escort Peter to the house of Cornelius.  (See Acts 10:7-24)

 

After a brief discourse between Peter and Cornelius, Cornelius begins to preach Jesus unto him.  While Peter was preaching to Cornelius and his household, the Bible records something wonderful that happened. Act 10:44  While Peter yet spake these words, the Holy Ghost fell on all them which heard the word. Act 10:45  And they of the circumcision which believed were astonished, as many as came with Peter, because that on the Gentiles also was poured out the gift of the Holy Ghost.  God’s spirit was poured out on Cornelius and those in his household that had heard the word of God preached.  They of the circumcision(in other words, the Jews)which were there with Peter were astonished because this was the first time that a non-Jew(Gentile)received the gift of the Holy Ghost.  How did these other Jewish men that were with Peter know that Cornelius and the others who were with them had received the Holy Ghost?  Verse 46 gives us the answer.

 

Act 10:46  For they heard them speak with tongues, and magnify God. Then answered Peter,

 

Notice though, that this is not the end, for this verse concludes with “Then answered Peter,”.    God still had more for Cornelius. Act 10:47  Can any man forbid water, that these should not be baptized, which have received the Holy Ghost as well as we? Act 10:48  And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord. Then prayed they him to tarry certain days.

 

What a glorious Memorial Day for Cornelius and his family!  If it was anything like the day that I was baptized in the name of Jesus and filled with the Holy Ghost, I know it was an awesome, unforgettable day.  I believe Cornelius’ prayers were answered in a far greater way than he ever expected.  God certainly honored the faithfulness of this man.

 

Is there something that you have been praying about for a long time?  Perhaps there is a loved one that you long to see come to God.  Maybe you are in need of a physical or emotional healing.  You may already have a relationship with God, but you are just desirous and so hungry for  more of Him.  May you be encouraged to keep asking, seeking and knocking.  God still answers prayer and He would love for there to be a  Memorial Day for you too!

Memorial Day 

 

It’s coming – Memorial Day

Cornelius, do not cease to pray

Prayers sent up to God have been heard

Every cry of your heart, each word.

 

 

Though answers may seem far away

It’s coming – Memorial Day

In faith keep on lifting your voice

And soon you’ll have cause to rejoice.

 

 

In our flesh we may groan, grow tired

Let this grand thought keep you inspired

It’s coming – Memorial Day

In spite of the seeming delay.

 

 

Now brought to life, to fruition

You have received your petition

No longer do you have to say

It’s coming – Memorial Day!

 

 

Written 5-27-07

Overcoming The World Pool

pool pals

As little kids it

was just a game we played

on hot summer days.

Everybody go as

fast as you can

in a circle

around and around

the pool.

We ran if we could,

as fast as we could,

until suddenly,

STOP.

Change directions.

Walk against the

swiftly swirling

current.

Grab onto the sides

and hold on

If you have to,

but resist the pull

and go forward

inch by inch

step by step.

See who can stay

Up the longest.

If we got tired,

no problem.

No big deal to

let go.

Just relax.

Let the strong force

carry you along.

Everything is fine.

 

But we never

realized that the game

would become reality

when we made the

decision to live

for God.

 

Often we are pommeled

by a vicious vortex

of wickedness,

worldliness and a

host of other

unseen undertows.

Our advancement

can seem slow at times.

We do become weary

but

LETTING GO IS NOT AN OPTION!

 

Victory comes

one step at a

time;

walking in the

Spirit as we

hold on

To truth.

 

4/27/16

Fruit That Will Remain

Some have started and departed.

This caused our heart to pain.

We still believe God to give us

fruit that will remain.

 

Others partook and then forsook.

From truth they turned away.

But we’re trusting in the Lord

for souls to be planted and stay.

 

They will not cease, our prayers;

petitions, groanings and tears.

Lord, help us do what we can

to share your salvation plan.

To those that have not heard,

if they’ll listen, we’ll teach your Word.

 

Help us work while it is day.

The world is growing dark.

Give us the words to say

to ignite in hearts , a spark.

 

Let this be our decision;

to reach together for souls.

Help us to catch the vision.

Please use our church as a whole.

 

To help men turn from darkness

into Your marvelous light

and have their sin stained garments

by Your blood, washed white.

 

And that each new born Christian

whether old or just a youth,

would grow in grace and knowledge,

and continue to walk in truth.

 

Then when we reach that heavenly home

where Jesus will rule and reign,

we’ll stand together side by side

with the fruit that did remain.

 

4/25/16

 

John 15:16 Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.

 

Tricky Trap House

 

image

image

I have a client who is rather fond of the cartoon characters Tom and Jerry. Tom is a cat, and Jerry is a mouse.  Having grown up in a home where we had a television, I am familiar with these characters that have been around since 1940. One day several weeks ago when I arrived at my client’s house for our afternoon session, I noticed a new toy sitting on the small table where we sometimes do our work. It was the house you see in the picture above. My client’s older sister explained to me that it was a tricky trap house that Tom uses to try and catch Jerry. Upon inspection, I noticed some of the cleverly disguised traps that were part of the house, such as a porch swing with a crack down the middle that you can’t see very well, a grand piano with three good legs and one wobbly leg that you can easily kick out and a chandelier that can be ejected by a button, causing it to fall and become a mouse trap. We use this trap house sometimes during play time to provide my client with opportunities to learn how to be flexible. Sometimes I will purposely interrupt him in playing, maybe by rearranging furniture in the house or saying that I want a turn to play with Tom and Jerry. I then take data on whether or not he was flexible. If he’s not flexible, we make a note of it and teach him how to respond in a way that is more acceptable than raising his voice in protest, screaming or throwing a fit. We are also using the trap house to try and help him gain an understanding of prepositions. For instance, I will take the Tom figure, place him in front of the house and ask, “Where’s Tom?” We prompt him to say “in front” until he can get to the place where he can tell us independently.

 

Maybe it’s because I’ve been a Sunday school teacher for so long that I have a tendency to see object lessons in things around me. I’d like to think that it is God trying to show me something. Whatever the case, I think this trap house has a spiritual application which I put in the form of a poem.


 

Satan has a tricky trap house

He’d like you to enter in

Though it has been called many things

It’s original name is sin.

 

He’ll tell you that it won’t harm you

Indulge a little, and all will be well

Don’t be fooled, his real intention

Is to damn your soul to hell.

 

Temptation can look so appealing

Appear to be harmless and fun

Consider not Satan’s slick offers

But from his enticements, run!

 

To God you must first submit

If ol’ sloughfoot you plan to resist

Then when that deceiver comes knockin’

The Lord will be there to assist.

 

And when the devil is beat at his game

For him it will be such a bummer

With God’s grace you will have become

A victorious overcomer!

 

I’m thankful that through Jesus we can have the power to recognize and overcome the temptations of the enemy. Satan, you’re kingdom’s coming down. No April fooling!

 

 

Perpetual Miracles



It’s officially spring in our part of the world. In spite of the allergies, I would have to say that spring is my favorite season. There is something so amazing about seeing plants and trees that appear to be dead suddenly start to bud and blossom. It’s a phenomenon that occurs every year and never ceases to fill me with wonder and hope. Growing up in the Midwestern United States, I experienced some very cold winters. Some of them seemed very long, but no matter how long they were, they did finally give way to spring.

In Ecclesiastes 3:1 we read

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

 
The times or seasons in our lives when we are experiencing trials and difficulties are a lot like winter.  They can seem cold, harsh and like they’re lasting a long time, but God doesn’t mean for them to last forever.

“Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations:” 1 Peter 1:6

If God allows a winter season in our lives, there surely is a reason for it, and if we keep trusting in Him, spring will come.

“But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle you.” I Pe. 5:10

If you’re going through a hard time, a winter like season that seems harsh and long, keep holding unto God. Pray and seek Him earnestly. This too shall pass. Spring will come!

 
It really is a miracle

An extraordinary thing

I’ve never seen a winter

That didn’t give way to spring!