Thursday, September 20, 2007

Why Do You Believe- remix

I came from the upbringing of “cheap grace” and an era of “preachers” heralding from the pulpits, “ask Jesus into your heart” and make Him your Savior, and you will not go to hell. Then, we would hear testimony of so many that would say, “I made Jesus my Savior at age 6 at VBS, but did not make him Lord until I was 27 and almost died in an automobile accident.”

Sadly, this teaching has permeated the pulpits across denominational lines, and continues to do so even today. The message of “salvation” for most is nothing more than a great humanitarian effort rather than the reality of fleeing from the wrath of God and embracing Christ because he is worthy.

What has been the effect? Well, quite simply we are seeing generation after generation that say that they love God with their lips (when they are around other Christians), but yet their hearts are far from him. I hear of so many today that believe that they are going to heaven because of a “decision” that they made so many years ago, and they quote scripture out of context to support this claim, and they are deceiving themselves to think that “everything will be okay in the end.”

It reminds me of the Scripture in Isaiah 29:

13 And the Lord said:
“Because this people draw near with their mouth
and honor me with their lips,
while their hearts are far from me,
and their fear of me is a commandment taught by men,
14 therefore, behold, I will again
do wonderful things with this people,
with wonder upon wonder;
and the wisdom of their wise men shall perish,
and the discernment of their discerning men shall be hidden.”

My friend, I pray that you might watch this video and that you might consider why you believe. Consider whether or not you are born-again. If not, repent and believe, do not continue to believe the lie. If you are born-again, then proclaim this gospel to others that they to may believe and be saved.

I praise the Lord for the ministry of Heartcry Missionary Society and the preaching ministry of Paul Washer.

Grace and Peace,


Monday, September 17, 2007

Latest Update on many things...

Mission trip in November

We will be leaving for Mexico on the weekend of November 9th. This will be a short-term trip, only about 3-4 days, but we have a specific agenda that we are going to be keeping (Lord willing). Please pray for those whom we already have contact with. Last night I spoke with Daniel, a 14 year-old young man whom we all got to know very well this past summer. He is looking forward to our group's return to Centenario. Our goal is going to be to have individual conversations with every person that we have a relationship with in this small village.

How can you pray? Here are just a few to mention:

  • Much needed funds for the trip. In addition to our own expenses for airfare, etc., an extra $600.00 would provide us a rental vehicle with insurance, meals, and supplies.

  • Pray for those who are considering going. I am really praying that my dear brother Ken will be able to go with us. Pray that the Lord would move some things around so that he might be able to minister there as well.

  • There are a couple of young men that are considering this trip. I pray that this would be a time for them to share the gospel with other young men in this village, but I pray that this might be a time of growing and maturing in their lives as well.

  • Pray for future missions endeavors to this area. We desire to have full time missionaries in this area and we are asking the Lord to raise up these people and that they might receive the training they need and go!

Update on our Worship Service in Spanish

We had a new couple attend this past Sunday! We had a total of 14 in attendance, and some of the people who have attended in the past, did not show up! Please continue to pray for this ministry and that the Lord would continue to grow his church. Our new couple this week asked if we would consider having a Sunday School class following our morning service. We are in desperate need of another teacher that can speak fluent Spanish.

We are also working at putting together a worship band. We already have 4 people that will be playing on a regular basis.

Update on Dad

Dad is home from the hospital now. He is resting and recuperating at our apartment here in St. Louis. Thank you all for your support and prayer. In about 6 weeks, dad will begin the radiation therapy.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Missions Report to the Jefferson Baptist Association

It was an honor to speak at the annual meeting of the Jefferson Baptist Association. Granted, I didn't really get the opportunity to "preach", but I did get the opportunity to share just a little bit of what the Lord had impressed on my heart regarding missions, and specifically those missions to the Hispanic community in and around Jefferson County, Missouri, as well as mission endeavors to the country of Mexico.

First, I would like to mention that if your measure of success in ministry is attendance or hype, then you would not consider our ministry to the Spanish-speaking community a success. However, I am so thankful that the Lord is still making His name great, despite the language barrier, and in the face of many other cultural obstacles.

In this meeting, I mentioned two major points that I felt needed to be covered at the time. I will post the full report at a later date. However, these points were not all that I could think of, but mainly because I was given such a short time, there was no opportunity for expounding.

Why is God serious about missions in Jefferson County, Missouri? Because God is serious about His glory! Why should we be serious about missions to unreached people groups in Jefferson County, Missouri? Because God is serious about His glory! Given all that was going on in the days of Malachi, look at what God said about His glory...(Malachi 1 ESV)

11For from the rising of the sun to its setting my name will be great among the nations, and in every place incense will be offered to my name, and a pure offering. For my name will be great among the nations, says the LORD of hosts.

14b I am a great King, says the LORD of hosts, and my name will be feared among the nations.

Obviously you could continue to quote many other passages, Isaiah 48, etc. However, what a great picture that this gives us about God being serious about His name being great among the nations! That was my charge to our association, that God's name would be made great among the nations.

Second, that our appetites would be whet for missions, specifically to unreached people groups, both local and global because we have the promise of God that there will be people saved! Looking at the Scripture again in Revelation 7

9After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, 10and crying out with a loud voice,"Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!" 11And all the angels were standing around the throne and around the elders and the four living creatures, and they fell on their faces before the throne and worshiped God, 12 saying, "Amen! Blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and might be to our God forever and ever! Amen."

When we preach the gospel, we can know that there will be a representative of every tribe, tongue, and nation that will one day stand with us before the throne of God! That is the promise that we have when we preach the gospel. It is not because of our best efforts, but because of the promise of God!!! (Of course, I am not saying that we should not put forth our best efforts).

However, when we preach, we should preach for the Glory of God. Everything else, though it may be important, is a secondary issue. Feeding people, disaster relief, etc., are all very important, very necessary, and indeed is the intent behind "loving your neighbor as yourself", however we must do these things in the proper perspective. We do these things as an overflow of Christ in us, working in us, to do good works which he prepared in advance for us to do.

There is much more to come on this topic and a larger report on my speech to the Jefferson Baptist Association. However, let me leave you with this resource. I would like to suggest a sermon that will stir your heart. It is sermon on missions and ministry. The sermon is by the great Paris Reidhead. It is entitled "Ten Shekels and a Shirt." (I have not viewed this entire website, so I am only going to endorse the sermon audio at the link I have included.

In all things...Christ preeminent!


Tuesday, September 4, 2007

A few updates from the Hospital

Update on Dad 9/7/2007

Dad has been up and sitting in his chair. He asked me to take some pictures and pass them along to everyone! He is looking so much better and is sounding really good! I got to hear him speak last night and that was very encouraging. I spoke with mom on the phone this morning and found out that the doctors saw dad this morning and capped his traech tube, which is allowing him now to speak easier.

Thank you again for all of those who have sent cards, made visits, etc. They have been much appreciated. Please continue to pray for mom and dad as they have a long recovery together in the future. As it stands right now he may be in the hospital for several more days because the doctors would like for him to walk around the building and see how he responds to this.

There are some more prayer requests to pass along. The doctors did notice an irregular heart beat last night. They also reported one while he was in intensive care, therefore they are going to run some testing to ensure that this is not a problem. It very well could be just a response from the pain.

For those who are new to reading the blog, or for those who have not had a chance to read this article, I would like to share with you a wonderful piece for you to read regarding the glory of God in cancer. It is an article by John Piper, and it is entitled "Don't Waste Your Cancer." I beg you to please read this article, I believe that it will benefit you greatly.

Dad is open to visitors now, so please feel free to stop by and see how he is doing. (He will need the practice talking!!!)

A man named "Adam"

While we were in the surgery waiting room on Thursday, I met a man named "Phil" who was waiting while his young son was in surgery. We would later find out that he would be in the same Intensive Care Unit. On Monday I went to the Intensive care unit and could not find Phil, but I did find his sister-in law and visited with her. She told me that Phil had explained that I had been coming by to pray with them. She explained to me that she is concerned that Phil would not leave the hospital, most likely because five months ago his wife died suddenly at the hospital while he was away for lunch. She had undiagnosed cancer and died shortly after being admitted. She went on to tell me that she just wanted Adam to be able to open his eyes because he has been in a coma for over two weeks. So, I prayed with Adam and asked the Lord to open his eyes, prayed for the family, and asked God to show the family that He is more than worthy of their praise. After this, I left for lunch.

Upon returning from lunch, I visited with mom and dad for a moment. When the nurses came in to do some work on dad, I stepped out and went to the ICU unit to see if I could catch up with Phil before I left the hospital. I picked up the hospital phone to call the unit and asked to visit with Phil and Adam. Moments later, the unit doors flung open wide, Phil was briskly walking toward the doors motioning for me to come back. He grabbed my arm and began explaining to me that his sister-in-law told him that two minutes after I left, Adam opened his eyes and has been alert ever since! Praise the Lord! Please do pray for this family that I might be able to clearly communicate the gospel to them. I have been sharing with them little by little.

In Christ,