Archive for September, 2015

The Importance of Rest

The older I get the more I understand the need for rest. Rest is essential if our bodies are to properly function. Honestly, I hate that fact. Why? Because we could get so much more done if we didn’t have to sleep every night. I have so often seen sleep as a colossal waste of time.

Think about it…

Every single night we have to go through the same routine to go to bed. Brush our teeth. Put on bed-clothes. Get stuff ready for the next day. Make sure the clock is set. Make sure the doors are locked. Make sure the air conditioning or heat is set. Make sure the kids are okay. Then we have to sleep 5 to 7 hours. Man! We could really get a ton of stuff accomplished if we never had to sleep. Yet, God requires that our bodies need rest. In fact, we really need between 7-8 hours of sleep each night to function in the optimum. Yet, most Americans don’t get that much. We’re running so hard and so fast that we don’t rest. And it catches up to us. It even kills.

Lack of proper sleep leads to all kinds of health problems. It’s true that you can’t burn the candle at both ends and expect not to get burned. Believe me… I’m preaching to myself here! So, I relished in last week’s time of rest. I really enjoyed the week off with my family. And I did basically nothing but hang out with my family and rest. In 7 days I left the house we were staying in just one time (to go to the grocery store and get gas). That’s it. I’m telling you…for a man who stays on the move all the time…it was glorious! 🙂

This is the house we’ve been staying in for the past several years at Holden Beach, NC (about 45 minutes north of North Myrtle Beach, SC).


That top left window is the room Pam and I get to have. This is my view…


Now that’s relaxing! Makes me miss being there!

Here’s street side…


We like taking walks up and down the street…


Holden Beach is a family beach and that’s not much to do and it’s not over-commercialized and that’s just the way I like it. (Can you tell I’m getting old!)

Yep…it was a wonderful time of rest and relaxation. I always enjoy building sand castles. Leah (my niece) helped Andrew, Clara and I on this castle kingdom.


I sure loved spending some great time with this little cutie pie!


Charlotte was playing “peek-a-boo” with Pam’s beach hat. She did the same with the curtain.


And get this…she started walking at the beach house last week. Here’s proof!


I didn’t even read a book this time around. I usually devour at least one book, sometimes two while I’m gone. Yet, I’ve found even that can take me away from my family. So, I just hung out with the family and played. It was a great decision.

I forgot to mention to you about something that Pam and I love doing each year. We host the church staff and our current Deacons and wives and their families at our home for a covered dish supper. It’s a blast!

Cars lined all up and down the driveway…


We had folks eating everywhere!


We had a great time of playing “corn hole” and the kids jumping on the trampoline…


There were some awesome games of basketball “knock-out.”


And the food…oh the food… Check out the dessert table…


See those cinnamon rolls on the right. There are three pans of them. Sshh!!! Don’t tell anyone…but, I had three!!

Yes, a good time was had by all!


We’ve got wonderful Deacons and we just ordained two new ones this past Sunday night. Brent Edmiston and Caleb Triplett…


We are so blessed to have 15 men serving in the true role of a Deacon. They aren’t a “Deacon Board.” They don’t just meet once per month and sit around a desk and make decisions, rubber stamp things and go home. No sir. They serve the families. Each Deacon has between 18-22 families to care for and look after. It’s a joy to do so. I was a Deacon for over 15 years before becoming an Elder/Pastor. I was voted in as a Deacon when I was 22-years-old in October of 1990, just a few months out of college and three months shy of my wedding day.

And today I have the privilege of helping to pastor the church I grew up…


That scene above is really the heartbeat of any gathering. Without prayer nothing great will be accomplished.

Speaking of great people and great pursuits. Here’s a great video I saw on Dr. David Black’s blog (www.daveblackonline.com). It’s about one of my favorite people of all time: Coach John Wooden of UCLA. This is Wooden at 96.

JohnwoodenHe died in 2010 at the age of 99. He speaks in the video about the difference between winning and success. The first ten minutes is priceless. The three things that he required of all his students (he was a former English Teacher) as well as great basketball coach.

As head coach at UCLA he won ten NCAA national championships in a 12-year period, including an unprecedented seven in a row. Within this period, his teams won a men’s basketball-record 88 consecutive games. Wooden’s streak of 7-consecutive NCAA Championships is even more remarkable and impressive because to this day no other coach or school has won the NCAA tournament more than two consecutive years. Wooden was named national coach of the year six times. This is well worth your time, especially if you teach or coach.

Well, it’s back in the saddle again… I’m rested and ready to go! We’ll be having three services on Sunday at 8:20, 9:40 and 11:00 am. I better be rested! Ha ha! 🙂

Here’s today’s 2-Minute Tuesday…

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Did you see this last week?


That’s your ancestor!!! Apparently researchers near Johannesburg, South Africa found about 1,550 bone fragments they say belong to about 15 individuals in what they claim to the largest single discovery of early human remains in Africa. And here are the bones to prove it…


Yep…that’s what scientists want you to believe.

The USA Today described the find this way:

“The creature, which evidently walked upright, represents a mix of traits. For example, the hands and feet look like Homo, but the shoulders and the small brain recall Homo’s more ape-like ancestors, the researchers said. Lee Berger, a professor at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg who led the work, said naledi’s anatomy suggest that it arose at or near the root of the Homo group, which would make the species some 2.5 million to 2.8 million years old.”

Wow! What a leap of faith!! Unreal! Don’t you just love how some folks can find a bunch of bones and make all these speculations. Did you see the “human looking eyes” in the artist’s depiction?


Folks, they found a PILE OF BONES and they want us to believe some artist’s depiction with skin and hair on it. Come on! Are we all that gullible?!! I love how the scientists argue about it in the article…

Not everybody agreed that the discovery revealed a new species. Tim White of the University of California, Berkeley, called that claim questionable. “From what is presented here, (the fossils) belong to a primitive Homo erectus, a species named in the 1800s,” he said in an email. At the news conference in South Africa, Berger disputed that. “Could this be the body of homo erectus? Absolutely not. It could not be erectus,” Berger said.

It’s like kids arguing over a toy! It’s mine…NO it’s mine…No… it’s mine!!! Amazing!

You know if all this stuff is true, then Adam had to be a monkey. You know that don’t you? Adam was a prehistoric monkey!!! No way! He was 100% fully human man and he was created in God’s image. Don’t you dare fall for the lies of macro-evolution (man’s way to explain away God). Do I believe in evolution? Sure I do. Micro-evolution. Meaning animals will adapt to their environment within a species. Yet, it is impossible for species or “kinds” to change into another species or kind. God made everything according to their “kinds.”

You can’t have your cake and eat it too on this deal. You have to pick one way or the other. Either you are going to believe in God and His word, or you are going to try to fit evolution into the Bible. It won’t work!

I love this Answers in Genesis article to give perspective on how to answer these types of “discovery.” https://answersingenesis.org/apologetics/answering-the-skeptics/?utm_source=articlesmedia&utm_medium=email&utm_content=featurebutton&utm_campaign=20150425&mc_cid=e2d79b06e4&mc_eid=4e7fcdcd8b


It’s like answering the question of how Noah fit all the animals on the ark. Not only was it possible… It was rather easy. See here… http://www.rforh.com/blog/noah-fit-animals-ark/

Can I say this without sounding nutty?

Just because something is printed and broadcast by the national media doesn’t make it true. It’s that simple. If you must have a way to explain away God and His creation (which atheists and many scientists do), they’ll take a hypothesis from a man in the 1850’s (Darwin) and run with it. And if you tell a lie long enough and loud enough, most people will believe it. And that’s what’s been happening in our schools and museums for decades now. Don’t believe it. Stick with God’s word, not man’s.

Hey, did you see the article about the church in the local paper? If you aren’t “from around these parts,” perhaps you haven’t so here you go. Front page of the Wilkes Journal Patriot yesterday…

Church to have 3 Sunday services due to its growth



That’s a fine trio is it not?


I really appreciated the nice coverage Jule Hubbard, Editor, gave us. He’s a gracious and good man and runs a good newspaper. Thanks Jule!

We praise the Lord for all He is doing to bless us and show favor on the work we are seeking to do to equip believers for the work of ministry in building His kingdom and seeing the lost one to Christ.

Did you catch the Two-Minute Tuesday today? Here you go…


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Things are changing faster and faster… Or at least that’s the way it seems to me.

Let’s see, we’ve got a lady running for the White House who has allegedly broken federal law with a private email server circulating Top Secret information (being investigated now), while another lady was led from a Court House to jail because she believes in the Biblical definition of marriage.

One gets to run for President…

One now has a rap-sheet…

Amazing! Sometimes I feel like I’ve fallen asleep and I just need to wake up from this bad dream. Do you feel that way? It’s enough to make your head spin.

Well, I’m more focused than ever. I’m more focused than ever to be a pillar and buttress for the truth! We’ve sat on the sidelines for far too long and watched it come to this. Who would have dreamed that we’d live in a nation where Christians would go to jail because they actually believe in the Bible and use the Bible and the principles found therein to make decisions.

You see, the truth is this. The homosexual agenda is not about the ability to marry. At the root of the agenda is to shut down and shut up anyone who disagrees with them. It’s not about tolerance. Tolerance? Are you kidding? We tolerate everything known to man in this country except for Christians. We tolerate BeyoncĂ© and Miley Cyrus dancing naked on stage while we buy tickets for our teenagers to watch them. We tolerate babies being dismembered and their body parts sold for profit by a group that uses our tax money to do so. Everyone tolerates everyone and everything except for Christians. Christians… Oh, I’m sorry, you are free to believe what you want to believe and teach what you want to teach, but don’t you dare bring it into the public square. Don’t you dare bring your religious understanding and Christian worldview to your job. No sir! You leave that stuff at the house and at church. We don’t tolerate or accept anyone telling us we can’t do what we want to do with our bodies, our relationships, our wedding cakes or our wedding pictures. You ARE going to celebrate our lifestyle! You WILL issue our marriage licenses and you’re going to like it or you will be fined, lose your job or been thrown in jail!!!

Please, please…somebody wake me up! I’ve got to be living on Mars. This can’t be happening here! But it is! It’s happening right before our eyes. And what happens in the next few weeks and months will determine the destiny for this nation for the next 100 years. You and I are living in one of the most important seasons of time in the history of our nations. What happens next with religious liberties will determine how your children and grand children will live the rest of their lives.

Part of that is what the Presidential candidates are going to do with this. From what I’ve heard: Huckabee, Cruz and Carson have been staunch supporters of the Kentucky Clerk, while Trump, Christie, Fiorina and Kasich have publicly said the Kentucky Clerk should have just given in and done her job and signed the marriage licenses. Well, the detractors are dead wrong! Dead wrong! Because that makes her complicit. We make accommodations in this country for Muslims to have prayer mats at GITMO, but we can’t make an accommodation to have a lady’s name taken off of a simple form! Come on Governor Steve Beshear! Step up to the plate like you did when you changed the form a few months ago to remove “husband” and “wife” and call it “spouse” and “spouse.” Oh…I’m sorry…you are a flaming liberal and that would go against your tolerance position. This poor lady is now receiving death threats because you have no backbone sir.

So folks, while we’re worrying about the stock market, planning our next vacation and getting our whole foods at the market, our children might one day stand before a tribunal and have to swear allegiance either to the government or to Christ. Many of us will likely be long gone by then, but I want you to think about it now. Because what you and I do or DON’T DO over the next several weeks will tell the tale. Are you ready? I hope you are. You’re going to have to have a strong backbone. You are going to have to be like Peter and John who stood before their highest court, the Sanhedrin and refused to back down. They said, “You decide if we are breaking the law, but as for us…we will continue to preach Jesus” (my paraphrase). Here’s the account from Acts 4. This is now here… It’s happening in America:

Acts 4:13-21

13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated, common men, they were astonished. And they recognized that they had been with Jesus. 14 But seeing the man who was healed standing beside them, they had nothing to say in opposition. 15 But when they had commanded them to leave the council, they conferred with one another, 16 saying, “What shall we do with these men? For that a notable sign has been performed through them is evident to all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and we cannot deny it. 17 But in order that it may spread no further among the people, let us warn them to speak no more to anyone in this name.” 18 So they called them and charged them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. 19 But Peter and John answered them, “Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you rather than to God, you must judge, 20 for we cannot but speak of what we have seen and heard.” 21 And when they had further threatened them, they let them go, finding no way to punish them, because of the people, for all were praising God for what had happened.

Do you have that kind of courage? I hope you do, because that’s what it’s going to take going forward. There’s a “new normal” in the land and Christians who hold to the tenets and principles of Scripture are no longer welcome in the public square! If you are a Christian and you want to work in the public square, YOU NEED NOT APPLY!

I described in detail what’s led to this in my video from Tuesday, “Who’s Going to Jail Next?”

Yes, I’m focused. I’m focused on teaching and preaching the Gospel. I got these two emails from two men earlier today that blessed my heart. One was a prayer…

My wife and I visited Mt. Pleasant on Sunday… It really encouraged me to hear the Word preached in the way that you did. So many people in this day and time try to put a politically correct spin on Gods word and don’t want to call out sin for what it is. Thank you!

And here’s the prayer that was emailed to me…

Dear Heavenly Father,  I want to thank you for my pastor.  I am thankful you have placed the conviction in his heart to preach the word of God and only the word of God.  I appreciate the spiritual warfare he is willing to confront daily from me, my family, and the rest of our church as the shepherd he is.  I know very little of the ridicule and criticism he faces almost hourly but can gather it can be overwhelming just from some of the comments and jealous remarks I hear at work when people find out I attend MPBC.  Thank you for strengthening his resolve to not buckle under the pressure and to preach the way you have designed him to preach.  I am thankful for all I have learned under him and how you have used him to grow my faith although I still fall so short of where I feel I should be at this point.  God, I pray for protection for him and his family as Satan cannot be happy about his boldness.  God, I pray that you place him on my heart more often to pray for him.  He needs the prayers more than any human can probably comprehend.  Give him rest and comfort in you.  Strengthen him each night during the few hours of sleep he gets so that his body is able to sustain what is needed for the work ahead.  We love you God.  Thank you just doesn’t seem adequate enough.  In thy name I pray.  AMEN

Oh, my heart has been blessed. Thank you Lord!

So, may I encourage you not to lose focus even though there are detractors. Sharpen your focus on what God has called you to do. Don’t get pulled to the right or to the left. Knuckle down.

That’s what the Weather Channel has figured out. They got away from their focus and they started running all of this “reality TV” and they are tanking. So, they are getting back to doing what you would think the Weather Channel ought to be doing: COVERING LIVE WEATHER. You see, I’m not interested in “Fat Guys in the Woods.” I’m wondering if it’s going to be snowing in my woods. And so, they’re revamping the whole network…


I’m focused on preaching, teaching, equipping and holding up the Word of Truth of Jesus Christ to the world!

And that’s what we did Sunday…


My prayer is to be described like Peter and John were described…

Acts 4:13

13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated, common men, they were astonished. And they recognized that they had been with Jesus. 

Onward we march soldiers!

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Early Winter Weather Forecast

Well it’s that time of year again. It’s time to make some winter weather predictions. Now, you must understand that these will be “educated” guesses into the future as we look at the weather patterns for this winter. The truth is: I’m not very educated when it comes to the weather, but I have stumbled across some folks who are and their track record over the years is fairly good.

Now let me say this right up front. Winter weather is very, very hard to predict. Literally a couple of degrees or 50 miles (storm track) can make all the difference in the world. So, we have to understand this isn’t like catching fish in a barrel. We also have to remember that winter weather (snow) is from “first flake to last flake.” The first flakes in western NC can come in November and literally last through the end of March. (I’ve seen it snow in the first week in April in Wilkesboro and the first week of May in Boone.)

The guy that I really like using is this guy:

BastardiThat’s Joe Bastardi. He’s a professed Christian who has his own website at: www.weatherbell.com. I’ve been following him for years and his predictions are about 70% accurate. And folks…for the weather…70% accurate is “crazy good!” He is on Fox News a lot and he is used often by USA Today and other major news outlets. He was educated at Penn State and his father was a meteorologist and so is his son. The guy eats up the weather and it runs in the family. He also is not a Global Warming alarmist. He says that the whole climate change hoopla is mainly just that…hoopla and hype.

Here’s his forecast for the temperatures.

Screen Shot 2015-08-29 at 3.43.33 PM

Here’s the forecast for the precipitation.

Screen Shot 2015-09-01 at 9.31.34 PM

And here’s the combination of temps and precip in a new index he has created he calls the “Severity Index.”

Screen Shot 2015-08-29 at 3.44.06 PM copy

As you can see from the above three charts, western NC is in the bull’s eye for twice as much snow as normal (200%). The rest of NC is at 150% of normal. For those of us in Wilkes County at 200%, that would put us around 2 feet for the winter. We are also in the darker blue shading for temperatures and that indicates we will be about 3 degrees Celsius below normal. That equates to about 5-8 degree Fahrenheit below normal. That’s cold! Did you see we are close to an “8” on the Severity Index (purple shading)? That equates to a tough winter indeed. And you know what? All it takes is one big storm to pull this off. If you get a: “One Footer,” or a huge Ice Storm, then you will get a big-time “Severity” issue for our area. With all of our hills and north-facing banks, it’s just hard to get roads scraped and for ice and snow to melt.

Bastardi says the winter could start out cold in November and early December and then pull back until Feb/March (similar to last year). What’s driving it is the El Nino. With the warmer waters off the western coast of South America, we get tons of moisture that comes across Mexico into the gulf and up the east coast. And if you know anything about big winters here in NC, our biggest storms come out of the Gulf. Remember this graph? I showed it to you before.


By the way, here’s the Farmer’s Almanac forecast. As you can see, they play it pretty safe. They don’t really go out on a limb with that forecast.


Also, while we’re talking about the weather, I wanted you to see where a scientist said President Obama missed the boat with Global Warming. Check it out here:


So there you have it. It could be an interesting ride for winter. And if you are snow lover, it could be a ton of fun!

By the way…here’s a friendly reminder from your three pastor/elders to get signed up for Flag Football! 🙂


Ever wondered what almost 10 year’s worth of messages stacked up looks like…

IMG_2844I was looking for a message the other day and pulled them out of the file cabinet. That’s about 2 1/2 feet. Hard to believe this January 1st I’ll be starting my 11th year of ministry. Man does time fly and I’m thinking we’ll probably have snow on the ground by then. 🙂

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