Friday, January 27, 2012


Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The Trestle

When I squirrel hunted as a kid, my grandfather and I would walk up a set of railroad tracks to hunt in the Big Black Swamp. Our walk "up the tracks" was normally around a mile or so with several "trestles" along the way. In case you didn't know, a "trestle" is nothing more than a bridge over a low lying area that could include a marsh, river, or creek.

Many trestle's are high off the ground, and if you get caught on one when a train comes, you either have to jump off the trestle or else get run over by the train! And a jump from 30-40 feet in the air could prove to be "uncomfortable!"

My grandfather would never walk across a trestle. We always walked underneath the trestle across a dried up creek or waded thru a shallow stream.  Even though I never saw a train on those RR tracks headed to our favorite squirrel hunting spot, my grandfather said that the chance was too great that we would meet a train while on the trestle and therefore have to jump...a chance he didn't want to take with his young grandson.

Many christians are taking chances today by walking across "trestles" and hoping that a train doesn't come. For example:
-Married folks who spend too much time with the opposite sex and "hoping" that they can remain pure and devoted to their spouse.
-Hanging with the wrong crowd and "hoping" that they don't get sucked into a secular lifestyle, instead of drawing some boundaries and becoming the "influencer" instead of the "influenced."
-Taking some "time off" from worship and fellowship with other believers and "hoping" that your spiritual journey is not effected.

My grandfather knew that the small amount of time that we would save by "walking the trestle" was not worth the chance of getting run over by a train!

Are we walking "spiritual trestles" and taking chances with our discipleship?

Friday, March 11, 2011

What if there's a bigger picture?

On March 10, 2011 in Columbia, Mississippi - I got my opportunity to shake hands with someone who from the very first time I heard his music, I was hooked - he is christian singer Matthew West. My wife Courtney & I attended his concert at Woodlawn Church in Columbia, Mississippi and we both left inspired to continue doing what we can to make a difference in our world at large as Christians.

The concept of Matthew West's new album "The Story of Your Life" was to take as many stories as people would send him about what was going on in their life and to turn those stories into powerful songs that would allow you to walk in the shoes of someone else and to most importantly understand how God fits into everyone's story and everyone's life. I personally feel that people's lives are changed when people hear about how other people's lives are changed. You gather insight on yourself when you are looking outward and you are completely open to any and everything. Matthew talked about how important Philippians 4:13 is to him and his daily walk with god. Philippians 4:13 says "I can do all this through him who gives me strength." We all need uplifted and we all need the strength to make it through the trials and tribulations life WILL have for us - but, if we put Jesus Christ first, he will provide us the strength to take us through it all.

The biggest message that I take away every time I listen to Matthew West is that we as Christians need to be reaching out to everyone - all the time. The sick, homeless, those with disabilities, our friends, family, strangers, church members, etc. the list can go on and on......

Each one of us needs to be the hands, feet, arms, and the heart of Jesus daily. In the New International Version (NIV) of the Bible, the word "Love" is used over 500 times. I think the message is quite clear on how we need to apply that word to our daily life. Check out Matt's song "My Own Little World" - inside the song is the daily message we all need to sing everyday.

What if there's a bigger picture?
What if I'm missing out?
What if there's a greater purpose?
I could be living right now
Outside my own little world
Start breaking my heart for what breaks yours
Give me open hands and open doors
Put your light in my eyes and let me see
that my own little world is not about me

Below is the video of this song

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Mission Opportunity

Bro. Jerry has been talking a lot lately about applying what you learn in the Bible and not just going to church, but being the hands and feet of Jesus. I know it can be hard to get out of our comfort zone, especially when our focus has been on helping the homeless lately - that is not a mission with a pretty face. HOWEVER, We Will Go (one of the ministries Bro. Jerry has been talking about wanting our class to get involved in) is a great place to start getting out there. They are having a big "need help getting this 2 1/2 page to-do list done" work day on Saturday, 01/15/2011, from 9-1. I am not sure what is on their to-do list for this weekend, but it can be anything from painting a house to plumbing to organizing their clothing "store".

If anyone is interested in coming and helping out, please give me a call at 601-201-6745. We can meet up in the parking lot behind First Baptist Jackson (the one where their gym is) and carpool/caravan to We Will Go. We would need to leave First Baptist by 8:45.

Thanks - Courtney

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Stewpot Opportunity Center

Some members of our class will be volunteering with Jackson Street Ministries on Wednesday night, December 15.  Here is how everything is going to shake out...we will leave the church (in our own vehicles) on wed. night around 7:30pm. We will travel to the parking lot of FBC Jackson where we will meet up with other volunteers from other area churches. Everyone is expected to be there by 8:15-8:20pm. (Please feel free to meet at FBC Jax without coming to our church). 

Malcolm Woody, who leads Jackson Street Ministries, will lead us in a short time of prayer, then we will travel (probably in our own cars or possibly in one of their vans) to the Opportunity Center.  At the OC, we will work with approx. 40 other volunteers to pass out water and sandwiches to around 120 people who regularly show up for this type of assistance.

Based on Malcolm's comments, we will be through at the OC around 9:30pm and free to leave.  Some additional volunteers (not our group) will then leave the OC and travel to designated locations around Metro Jackson (abandoned buildings, under bridges, etc) and minister to the people who live in these areas but cannot make it to the OC.

Some of the folks that have told me that they are going are: Me, Aaron Albright, Josh/Courtney Friedel, and Melanie Gibson.  I will text you more information on Wed.  Also, you can check out the Jackson Street Ministries website  @ just google Jackson Street Ministries.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Mission Opportunity

Joshua and Courtney Friedel are going to We Will Go Ministries in downtown Jackson on Saturday morning, December 18th.  If you would like to meet them there and participate in that morning's mission activities, please let me or Josh/Courtney know.  

Also, I am working on getting more information on a Homeless Ministry that operates in downtown Jackson.  I should have that info for the class this Sunday, December 12.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Sunday School December 5

Our study this week comes from Lesson 5 in our SS book. The title of the lesson is "Incarnational Discipleship." The incarnational discipleship model is physical, active, and tangible. It equates worship with activity. Whereas Personal Discipleship focuses inward, incarnational discipleship focuses outward. Within the framework of the incarnational model, people grow in their knowledge and relationship with Christ by seeking to become His hands and feet through service and outreach to others. (adapted from pg 97 in our SS book) 

Patty and I will see you Sunday!!

The Blessing1

Throughout the recent Thanksgiving holidays, I heard numerous people proclaim how "blessed" they were.  What most usually meant was that they were "blessed" to have a job; or they were "blessed" with their family; or they were"blessed" because they were financially secure, etc., etc. Granted, these are real blessings, but what does the Bible say about what it means to be "blessed?"  I want to share three devotionals built around this idea of "blessing."

The first has to do not with "being blessed," but how we can BE a blessing to others.

In 1 Peter 3:8, the converted fisherman explains 5 ways that we can be a blessing to others... here's how:

1. Live in harmony with others- Harmony means a unity of spirit and thought. See Rom. 12:16 and Phil 2:5
2. Be sympathetic towards others-which means to "suffer together." See 1Cor 12:26
3. Love people within the family of faith. See the definition of "love" in 1Cor 13:4-8
4. Be compassionate towards others-The word "compassionate" means "pitiful." It also has the idea of being tenderhearted and affectionately sensitive.
5. Show humility- Humility is the opposite of pride. See Jesus' example in Phil 2:6ff.

Alot of us want to be "blessed"...and I will share some thoughts about HOW to be blessed in the next devotional, but in the meantime, why don't we make it our prayer to BE A BLESSING to others!

Monday, November 8, 2010

November Girls Night In

I am not a fan of the cold weather, so I thought we could do a Girls Night IN for November.

Friday, November 19th 6:30 (or whatever time you can get here!)
Farmington Station
423 Fenway Dr
Brandon, MS 39047

Wear your comfy, cozy clothes and we'll have some wintery food...maybe chili, rotel, hot chocolate! If you could, let me know if you plan on coming so I can have an idea of how much food to prepare! Can't wait to see you there!!
Courtney 601-201-6745

Directions: From Lakeland, take a left onto Old Fannin Rd (towards Kroger). Go about 2 miles down Old Fannin and turn right into Farmington Station. Once in our neighborhood, take a right at the first stop sign onto Ashton Way. First left on Greensboro. First left on Fenway Dr. We are all the way at the end, in the cul-de-sac. Second house on the left past the stop sign. I'm bad with writing out directions, so feel free to call me if you need help!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Just for fun!

Personalize funny videos and birthday eCards at JibJab!

I saw this on TV and Bro. Jerry asked me to make one for fun for the SS class! I didn't know our members were so talented! These were the only photos I had to play with! Sorry I couldn't include everyone!