Pastor's Blog
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May 2, 2011, 10:06 AM

Shaking In Our Boots

Ok, so this week's blog is a little bit of a cheat, but I couldn't help it. As I have been talking with God and seeing the ways in which He is moving in and around us...I think we should have a two-fold response. 1) Get very excited. Why? God is moving and changing hearts. He is preparing the way for His spirit to come through and totally rock our worlds and chnage how we think and live. This is we seek God He will show Himself and we will come to know Him more! (Really, I'm not making this up, it's in the Bible. See: Deuteronomy 4:29, 1 Chronicles 22:19, 1 Chronicles 28:9, 2 Chronicles 12:14, Jerimiah 29:13, Psalm 69:32. 2) Be afraid, be very afraid. God is good, very good. And God is holy, very holy. You and me?  Not so much. And when people come into contact with a very good and holy God, they are never the same, and live does not go along it's meaningless ways anymore. Moses talked with God and glowed for days and people didn't want to have much to do with Him (Exodus 34:30). Paul met Jesus and was told how his entire life must chnage and how he would suffer for Jesus (Acts 9:1-16). John the Baptist worked with Jesus, and it cost him his life (Matthew 11:4-6; 14:1-12). We need to have a healthy fear of God, a realization that He is not some small God we can out in a box and define, but He is the literal Ruler of the Universe. Listen to what He tells us in Jeremiah 5:21-22,  Listen, you foolish and senseless people-- who have eyes but do not see, who have ears but do not hear. Do you have no respect for me? Why do you not tremble in my presence? I, the LORD, am the one who defines the ocean's sandy shoreline, an everlasting boundary that the waters cannot cross. The waves may toss and roar, but they can never pass the bounds I set.  We want to meet God, but are we ready for the God we might meet and the commands He is going ot give? Here's the cheat part, let me share with you some stuff I'm reading by Henry Blackaby in "The Man God Uses." (Highlights and bold are from me)

"Every time anyone in the Bible of any significance met God, great fear, awe, and trembling came upon them. We talk about standing in the presence of a Holy God, yet our response to Him is unlike anyone who stood before Him in the Scriptures. We must ask ourselves if we are confronting God in such a way that aholy sense of trembling comes over us. How can Christians proclaim a message of urgency while living a lifestyle of complacency? People will believe the message when it is delivered by a messenger whose life demonstrates that he knows God and takes God seriously. " 

If you are thinking like me, as you examine yourself the reponse might be a collective "ouch," but wait it gets better...

"If we are Christians , we have living in us all of God's provision for a broken world. Christ, living in us, will make a difference through us. If people around us are not being affected by Christ, we must consider whether there is sin in our lives hindering Christ. If so, this indicates a heart problem. Christ is not truly our Lord if He is not having His way in our livesIf we are Christians and no one's life is being changed because of our presence, we have an immediate need for repentance."   

Nothing like the truth to kind of make you shudder! We have all the power of the Ruler of the universe inside us, and we're playing church. Maybe we should tremble and let Him be Lord and see what kind of life change that means for us...and those around us. As for me, I'm shaking in my boots, but I don't think that's a bad thing. Enough of this tiddleywinks type of faith, I want to serve this God who put the oceans in their place and let His love make me glow, and I want to share it with others. Hmmm, maybe this shaking in your boots thing isn't such a bad way to live. Yeah, you never know where it might lead (see John the Baptist, Jesus and countless others) but at least it makes life have meaning! And isn't that what we really all are shaking for? 

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May 2, 2011, 10:04 AM

Church At Cowboy Stadium

So I had a hard time Monday. Due to circumstances beyond my control I found myself in attendance at the Monday Night Football game in the new Cowboys Stadium in Dallas (my Christmas present from my wife, she's most definitely a keeper!). Let's just say that new stadium is amazing. It is enormous, and beautiful and expensive. Really, it is quite impressive. From the distance around from one end to the other at 1/4 mile, to the massive high def tv screen that is so big I felt the need to include this little picture that helps describe how amazing it is!  And the quality of picture is so amazing that it really is like you're watching tv at home, if your tv was 159 ft wide by 71 ft tall! And the more I thought as I sat there at the game taking in the atmosphere and the people and everything, I was struck by the feeling that I had been in a setting like this before. And it took me until the third quarter to realize why, being in Cowboys stadium was like being in church!

I mean think about it. Everyone comes to the stadium because that's where you go if you want to see the Cowboys. There is sacrificial giving. Sodas cost $6, beer $8, and nachos $8.50. But the best was a large pizza for $35, and believe me, people gave sacrificially! There was an altar, the giant screen, upon which was put the things we were to worship. The main thing we were suppossed to worship? Judging by how much screen time they got, we were to worship in order: The cheerleaders, the players, and other fans. No lie, the biggest cheer when they introduced the team came when they introduced the cheerleaders. Another reason it felt like church was all the characters. From the loud but funny fans from the other team that everyone jeered, to the drunk red-neck in front of me calling all the players mamma's boys, to the 30-something guy next to me who stood the whole game and tried repeatedly to get everyone to yell "Go Cowboys" to the Asian couple in front of me who sat still and quiet the whole time. But perhaps the most church-like feeling came from the large crowd together for one purpose. At one point they even ran a graphic on the screen that said this: One tribe (they then showed crazy dressed fans). One people (showed normal fans wearing lots of 'boys merchandise). 82,000+ can come together for one purpose if they choose! (And everyone starts cheering like crazy).

Whether anyone realized it or not, Monday night was not a football game, it was a worship service. The goal was to worship something silly and passing, but it was never-the-less a worship service, I should know because I've been in lots of them! And I realized that people are indeed created to worship, and feel the need to find things bigger than themselves to pour into. To find meaning in community and common goals and purposes, to give of themselves to a cause. And our world is so jacked up, that instead of turning to the Creator of the Universe as the object of that worship, 82,000+ human beings worshipped other human beings who were really built and were wearing a football or cheerleading uniform. All those people worshipping a game...and all the while their souls were stirring inside them saying , "This feels good, but there must be something more...something lasting longer than the time it takes to play a game."

So I'm thinking this, and looking around the stadium at this massive group of people and their situation, when God whispers something to me. "Kevin, I love these people. Every single one. From the cheerleader on the screen to the drunk redneck. I love them and died for them. So Kevin, let me ask your Jesus big enough for all of them?" And I sat there stunned. Wondering if the Christianity that I sell would be any more fulfilling to these people than their football game. Because they need something real and lasting, not church or religion, but something to worship with all of their being like they were trying to do with the Cowboys. And I wonder, do I know and share a Jesus that is so worthy of worhsip that I sell out to Him with every aspect of my life as these fans did to the Cowboys? Is that the Jesus I'm selling, or have I been lazy and presented a boring Jesus who is simply a moral watchdog to tell you how to live and to whack you when you mess up?

I need to get back to worshipping the Jesus who is: The Lion of Judah, The Great I Am, The Mighty Warrior, The Captain of Salvation, The King, The Lord, The Foundation, The Life, The Way, The Truth, The Conquorer, The ROCK!!!! Because that's a Jesus worth worshipping, that's a Jesus worth loving, that's a Jesus worth giving everything for. That's a Jesus that will save and satisfy your soul! That's the Jesus that 82,000+ need, that's the Jesus I need. The Jesus who is so big that when I thought I was going to a football game took me to church instead. That's the Jesus I need to be about you? 

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May 2, 2011, 9:56 AM


Wow. I was at the church pretty early today and walked in with it being still and hot and humid outside. An hour and a half later walked out and found cool, breeze and rain. What a welcome change! Made me think about my life. So often I seem to get lazy and careless and allow my life to become so hot and dry, and I treasure those sweet moments when God blows new breath on me and rains down His spirit refreshing me. I need those times because they renew my hope, and they encourage my faith, and they spur on my love!

Love...there's an interesting thought. Been doing a lot of thinking about love lately, and who and what I love, and neglect to love. Funny isn't it how we talk so much about loving God, and yet seem to struggle so mightily in doing so. Let me throw another John Eldredge quote your way,

"We are, abover all else, self-centered, the very opposite of how the Trinity lives. You have loved God with all your heart, soul, mind and strength? You have loved your neighbor as yourself? 

Neither have I.

We fail on the most essential virtue of all, the virtue of Eden: we fail when it comes to loving."

Hmmm...sounds bad, but not really. Truth like this is always painful, but also necessary. For it is only when we face the truth that we can realize where  we are, and start making the changes to get where we need to be. So after reading this quote I started thinking and praying about changing how I love. And do you know what happened? God breathed fresh breath and rained His spirit down on me.

Just since this morning I was able to meet and talk about my heart and pray with some other men who are desperately seeking to become the men God has called them to be who are willing to walk with me so we don't have to walk this road alone. I was able to go to a nursing home and sing songs with the sweet old folks, and watch almost in tears as Landri my 4 year old held hands almost the entire time with a lady who every time I see her cries and tells me how lonely she is. For the first time ever she left the meeting room with a smile on her face. I got a call from a dear friend who had received terrible news about his family, and was able to listen to him and pray with him over the phone and grieve with him. And in the midst of his hurt know his love for me, and affirm my love for him. 

Amazing. God is good, and His love is so great. It is new every morning, it is a refreshing rain, it is a cool breeze, it is a reminder of why life matters. I know you've been so busy with life, stuff, family, work, ect...   and I write this just to encourage you to stop and pray for God to breath on you, to rain down His spirit. To remind you of His love for you, and to allow you to practice your love for Him to others. Let's determine to not fail at loving, but lets work at becoming the world's greatest lovers.


THURSDAY: 33 MILES concert at 7:00 at the high school auditorium. TIckets are $12 in advance, and $15 at the door. Come.. bring many people...tell them to bring others...lokking forward to seeing you there! 

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May 2, 2011, 9:55 AM

Would You Like Fries With That?

     No McDonalds here in Karnes City. Can't say that's a real big loss in my book, one greasy burger is pretty much the same as any other. But you know what I do miss from McDonalds? The fries. Man, I could eat McDonald fries til the cows come home. You can probably look at me and see that very rarely has a fry come my way that I have not welcomed into my mouth. I mean those things are good! One of my favorite things about McDonalds is that no matter what you order, they always ask you at the end, "Do you want fries with that?" It's like they know that the secret to any good meal at Mc Donalds is the fries, and that things just aren't complete, they just aren't right until you add the fries.

     Christianity is kind of like McDonalds. There's a church on every corner, over 6 billion souls have been served. But the reality is that for the most part the people turned out by churches are  just like people that never step inside a church.(I thought about adding here that one greasy soul is pretty much like another, but decided against it.) Which kind of makes you wonder what the point is.  However there is something that Christianity has that seems to make a difference, that completes things, that makes things right. What is that? Jesus. Because through Him we find out about forgiveness, and grace and love. And no matter what's going on, if you have some Jesus with life, it's all going to be ok.

     So here's the issue, when it comes to life, and God looks at us and says, "You want some Jesus with that," we tend to think about it for a moment, and then shake our heads no and go on our own. And then when things inevitably fall apart as they are want to do in a life without Jesus, we then turn to God and blame Him asking how He could let life fall apart when we go to church (usually) and follow Him (when we have time) and love Him (with at least 15% of our heart). I wonder what it is going to take for us to figure out what we really want with life. I'm foolish as anyone and often choose to go my own way instead of taking some Jesus with that. But as I was reading a book by John Eldredge, he quotes Douglas Coupland and I could relate and hope you can as well.

   "Now--here is my secret:  I tell it to you with an openness of heart that I doubt I shall ever acheive again, so I pray you are in a quiet room as you hear these words. My secret is that I need God--that I can't make it alone. I need God to help me give, because I no longer seem capable of giving; to help to be kind, as I no longer seem capable of kindness; to help me love, as I seem beyond being able to love." 

     You know why I like this quote? Because Douglas finally stopped and thought, and realized that He didn't just want some Jesus with that, but that He couldn't make it without Jesus. But with Jesus, He had all he'd need. So today as you are wandering around with life going crazy, STOP!!! And answer this, do you want some Jesus with that?  Or would you rather keep trying to do it on your own? Me, I NEED some Jesus with that! And some fries...where's the nearest McDonald's?


  • Big thanks to Nathan for the book lending (no clue when he found time to read it)
  •  Apologies to anyone who is offended by the anaogy of Jesus with fries. I promise never to do that again, and will scrub next week's entry about how Jesus is like Coke, He's the real thing baby. Or the week after how a disciple is NOT like Burger King, because you can't have it your way.
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May 2, 2011, 9:52 AM

Can You Hear The Bells???

Ok, first I'm sorry it has been a while since I've written, things have been just a little bit hectic lately! But I'm back now, and have got to tell you what just happened. I was in my office just finishing my quiet time when my secretary (Lisa) called me. She said the hospital was on the phone, they needed a minister and wanted to know if I could come by for a patient. So I headed out.

When I arrived, I went to the nurses station and a sweet nurse told me of a patient who was very sad, and had some family issues. The nurse had asked if she would like a chaplain and so they called me. The nurse just wanted to help and was crying herself for this lady at this time, and I was so impressed at her caring heart. Thank God for those kind of people who really care for others! I don't remember her name or I'd put it here so everyone could know what a good job she did! I'll do it anyway, Nurse Idon'trememberyourname, great job!

So I went to see the patient, Bertha, (I remember her name!). She was in a room with her Mom and a sister. Her family left so we could talk, and Bertha started sharing her story with me. She cares for her Mom who is elderly, and had even quit her job to do so, but that had caused a lot of tension in her life and she was very stressed. Then last night she got in an argument with her nieces boyfriend because he wasn't treating her right, and the stress gave her chest pains which put her in the hospital. She had been crying when her family and the nurse came in, and when they asked why, she said because she had been talking to God. They asked if God had made her cry, and she said, "No, I was crying out to Him." I got excited about this, but not as much as I did when she went on to say, "I feel like I need forgiveness, and I want that from God." I affirmed that He was the only one who could forgive, and she asked an even better question, "How can I know if He forgives me?"

Now I'm not the sharpest knife in the drawer, but even I can see that the Holy Spirit is working on this girl, so I told her about 1 John 1:9 which says that if we confess our sins He will forgive us and make us right. And then I told her about how we're separated from God by our sin, and how we lack forgiveness and peace because of that. Then I told her how God loved us so much He sent Jesus to come and pay for forgiveness, and how He did that by dying on the cross, and that if we'll believe in Him we can have our sins forgiven and find peace, and that if we do that  then God looks at us He sees His beloved child and we can have relationship with Him. I then asked Bertha if that is something she wanted to do, and she said yes, that was exactly what she needed! So we prayed, and she accepted Jesus!!!

Now would be the time to stop and do one of the following if you're reading this: clap, shout, dance around, freestyle rap about how good God is, nod your head solemnly that this is a good thing. I'll wait.......................are you done? I hope you didn't choose the head nodding! I mean how good is God? He seemingly randomly worked things out so that everything fell into place so that a hurting soul in desperate need of Him had people care for her enough to call me so I could tell her the amazing truth, and she met that truth in the person of Jesus!!! And she was not the same when I left the room as when I went in, not because I did anything, but because she was now a forgiven child of the Sovereign Creator of the Universe who had forgiveness and peace when only minutes before she had none! That is amazing!!!

Needless to say, that got me a little pumped up. Made me think how in Luke 15:7 Jesus says there is great rejoicing in heaven when a sinner is saved. And that made me think of an old song about them ringing the bells in heaven when someone gets saved. So I started singing that song loudly and offf key in my car on the way back to the church, and I think God smiled and sang with me! Can you hear the bells??? The picture on this page is the Liberty bell, I thought that was appropriate since Bertha had been set free today. Guys (and girls), be ready! As we follow God and strive to be His, be ready because you never know when He might call you to help a lost sheep, and then to celebrate with Him when that sheep is found. God is so good!!! Now I have to get back to my singing....."Can you hear those bells a ringing? Can't you hear the angels singing? It's  glory hallelujah to the King!" 

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