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This Is It!

This is it! I’ve been blogging for 10 years, and it’s been a blast! But, it’s time. It’s time to celebrate the platform this has been for the past decade and to look to the next platform. Remember, I’m a business man from years gone by. I’m constantly looking at ROI. Return on Investment. The investment is my time and effort for the value of the return. Again, I’ve loved blogging, but it was for an outlet or platform to disciple.

I’ve written 717 posts. My blog has been viewed 175,000+ times on all 7 continents. My first blog was on 10.6.09. It was titled: “Adult-Centered Youth Ministry.” Here’s the link: https://dkevinbrown.wordpress.com/2009/10/06/why-adult-centered-youth-ministry/. And here’s the first picture I ever posted:

Clara and Andrew were 4 years old. Aren’t they the cutest little things! 🙂 I asked: Why Blog? This was my response: “It’s a great question. I’ve debated whether I should do this for some time. I’m busy! That’s been my excuse for months. Yet, I have found myself answering the same questions over and over about issues that are near and dear to my heart. What kind of issues?  Family, daily living, raising our children and combating the culture with the Word of God. So, I’m convinced it’s time to blog to get answers out there to the masses.”

And I’ve been excited to seek to do just that for a decade. But, communicating to the masses has changed. And thus, I’m excited to announce to you that beginning on Tuesday, September 24th this is coming:

It’s going to literally be my blog…but, be via a Podcast. Matthew McNeil is going to be our host. The format will be informal…and be around 25 minutes. We’re going to record it live and it will be able to be viewed or listened to (Podcast style). It’s going to be so wonderful to go deeper than I can with my blog and with the weekly Two-Minute Tuesday.

In essence I’m combining to conquer. I’m adding by subtracting. I’ve been doing a blog and a Two-Minute Tuesday simultaneously for 4 years and the Podcast will help me to work smarter. With the Podcast we’re going to dig into subject matter that needs the light of God’s Word to shine on those issues so as to give light, direction, and truth. We’re going to discuss topics that include: family, marriage, money, dealing with kids and the difficulties of raising children in our culture, dad issues… There will be funny stuff, serious stuff, and surprise guests. I really believe this Podcast will have the potential to be encouraging and provide people a way of growing in their faith and it can be viewed or listened to driving to work, school, doing dishes, exercising, mowing, etc. I believe it will be something people will look forward to each week. Just like not wanting to miss your favorite weekly show. I’m excited… I really am! We’ll have seasons, just like any podcast you’d listen to today. So, be looking for more details coming soon!

You say, “I like seeing what’s going on with your family… How will I see that?” Well, that’s where I’m going to multiply my time by loading the pictures and events to the other platforms like Facebook (which I use a lot now), Instagram, and Twitter. Again, it’s just going to be a better use of time.

Will I miss blogging? Yes and no. Yes, I’m nostalgic, and I’m at the age that I’m not a huge fan of change. But, I’m not naive enough to believe that I don’t have to change with the times. I’ve got to be willing to use the platforms that people use today. Otherwise, I’m going to become irrelevant. Honestly, the rigor of my schedule is forcing me to this. With the doubling of the church in size over the last decade, it’s just impossible to keep up with all the demands if I don’t divide and conquer…again…add by subtracting.

The blog will remain online and I will continue to direct people to it from time to time on subject matter that folks might want in writing… But, it’s time to change…

The same is true of our church! This Sunday we begin our:

It’s going to be the LIVE STREAM of our third service! Yes, you’ll be able to watch the service live! It’s going to be amazing! So, you won’t have to miss us if you are traveling or not able to be at the church. We also hope to reach the 64% of Wilkes Countians who do not attend church on a weekly basis. We hope by way of this introduction to the church, (which will be accessible from Facebook and live on our webpage), that it might encourage them to want to come to the church. That’s the goal! Will you pray for us?!

Last Sunday we burned the note! $3.1 million dollars paid off after 13 years for our auditorium (Reach Center). Praise the Lord! It’s been an accumulation of a lot of wonderful people over the years. From a family who gave $500,000, and a man who gave $100,000 to finish off the final payment. But, I am convinced there were other families who (in aggregate) gave many, many thousands of dollars as well. The point is…the Lord did it through His people, and there is much more work to be done to reach souls for the kingdom! To God be the glory in that in the last 13 years of the 144 year existence of our church (founded in 1875), we’ve seen more souls saved, baptisms, additional new members, and increase in the budget (almost tripled), than at any other period of time in the history of the church. Again, to God be the glory for great things He has done!

Here’s this week’s TMT… “Do Extraterrestrial Life Forms Exist?” https://www.mpbc.church/media/?sapurl=Lys3ZWViL2xiL21pLys1MzM0bmRwP2JyYW5kaW5nPXRydWUmZW1iZWQ9dHJ1ZQ==

I love you all! Looking forward to Tuesday, September 24th.

Kevin

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I told you last time it was going to be a Big Week and it was! I’m still recovering! I am grateful for all the Lord continues to allow me and my family and our church family to experience. I’m unworthy of His goodness, but I’m grateful for His kindness. We finished the VBS week with record numbers…170 kids…the Independence Celebration was a hit! We ended up having over 1200 people at the field and 200-300 more at the neighboring school.

We had a watermelon eating contest…

Many said, “That’s the best fireworks show I’ve ever seen!” Well, praise the Lord! At the end of the day, we loved the fact that we could bring so many people under the sound of the Gospel. I shared the truth of Jesus that He is the ultimate freedom (John 8:32). I really believe the Lord used it, and our community knows we love them!

Then Sunday came…and let me tell you…I was one tired puppy! The past week had been a weekend of two weddings…then a full week of VBS…at church till 9:30 each night and then Independence Celebration on Saturday and then a fantastic day on Sunday. We had 8 baptisms! We had folks from young and old. There were so many different stories of how Jesus saved these precious souls…

A father baptized his son…

The gentleman below was christened as a child, but knows that Biblically speaking, he needed to follow Christ in immersion. It was a blessing!

Folks, I will never take any of that for granted! Those are miracles right before our eyes! We also had three families join Sunday! Unreal!

Can I be honest? I was so tired when I got home, that I literally ate a sandwich and collapsed. I slept for 2 hours. I was worn out…but, it was a great tired. Do you know what I mean? You are worn out, but you are rejoicing! Yes, I know you understand that!

These guys are such hard workers and I’m grateful to work with them! 

In the Lord’s strength, and a lot of great volunteers, we pulled off a lot of work for the Kingdom in the last couple of weeks! What a privilege!

Last Sunday, Clara headed out for music camp to Liberty University. She had a blast! That’s her, top left.

She played her violin! This was on the Liberty Instagram page:

It was a music camp, yes…but, Clara said, “Dad it was so spiritual.” She couldn’t say enough how much she felt like she grew in the Lord this past week! Thank you Liberty Music Faculty and students.

She learned music pieces to go with praise and worship songs that she played with a band of her peers. It was really amazing! They named their group, “Stack.” See how they have “stacked” their hands…

Now here’s the thing…we are going to do all we can as parents (Pam and I) to keep this fire stoked in her life. It’s a joy to see! Thank you Lord for what you are doing in my daughter’s life!

And while Clara’s been doing that…Andrew has been building a 3-D printer and completed the project recently!

Check out one of his latest creations…

A whistle!! Can you believe a 3-D printer can make that? Andrew is a pretty talented dude!

Here’s the latest pics of my grand babies…

Milly is getting so big!

Charlotte and Evie love sidewalk chalk!

I got in a bit of trouble with mommy (my daughter, Katy), after I sent Charlotte home covered in chalk!

Here’s this week’s TMT: “True Christianity is Growing in America!” I believe you’ll find this interesting! Take a look!

http://link.mpbc.church/TMT7-9

Kevin

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It’s been a big week already! I announced Sunday during all three services that the Building Debt has been paid off! Praise the Lord! What an amazing feeling! I had a man call me about three weeks ago and ask me to come by his home. I did and he said, “I feel the Lord is telling me to pay it off.” What a blessing! And that happened last week! We’ll have a “note burning” on Sunday, August 11th.

Honestly, after 13 years and being $3 million dollars in debt…whew!! What a relief to have that over. Are we planning on building anything else and try to get back to one service? Nope! Too expensive! We’re going to maximize what we have. We have room for another 150 each service and that would take us to over 1200 folks (currently we’re averaging around 660 people in total each Sunday). So are we done doing anything? No way!

There is so much to be done. There are so many needs that we’ve put off for years. So, the Leave A Legacy (building fund) will stay open…but, it won’t be paying off debt. Instead, we’ll look to pay for things as we go. We’ve got kitchen equipment that needs replacing, walls that need painting, a new playground (the current one is 30 years old), HVAC units that need purchasing, etc. There is much to be done… So, I hope folks will continue to give. I know my family will be. It’s like in your home…after 13 years…things have to be done, repaired, replaced, etc. The same is true of a church. The way I see it…we’re making eternal investments each week here at MPBC. Truly, eternal deposits are being made weekly in Wilkesboro, NC by way of what we’re doing to equip and strengthen the believers to do the works of ministry…the Great Commission.

It’s amazing, really…12 years ago (after we had been in the building for just over a year), our Treasurer told us that we had to raid the General Fund to pay the Building payment. We had $12 left in the General checking account. Oh my! We were down to about 275 people and things were looking scary to say the least. Yet, the Lord showed favor on us and we were able to see His hand and last Sunday we worshipped in a building…DEBT FREE! I can’t tell you what a relief and a joy this is!

I officiated two marriages this past weekend. Dylan and Noel Henderson were the first couple. I love weddings!

Isn’t that wonderful! You got to love those smiles!

I love my family!

Can you tell Evie likes to eat!

She’s shoveling in that cake!

Then it was another wedding on Saturday. This time it was Keith and Barbara Huffman.

I’m grateful to perform these ceremonies… Everyone knows I don’t do them unless we sit down and counsel…(and that keeps some from asking me)…but, at the end of the day…I’ve got to be accountable to the Lord for marrying folks.

As I speak, we’re having Vacation Bible School this week. We’ve had the most kids ever! They are having a blast learning about Jesus!

We’re praying the Lord will touch these wonderful children’s lives and that we can sow seeds of faith in Jesus. I’m so grateful for our church and the tons of volunteers it takes to pull this off. And WE’RE NOT DONE! We’ve hosting a Community Independence Celebration this Saturday night. We’re expecting 1,000+ people. (Honestly there’s no way to know for sure how many we’ll have, because this is the first one we’ve ever done.) But, this is a legitimate fireworks display like you’d see at a minor league baseball game or Carowinds. It’s going to be amazing! We’re staring at 4 pm and end at 9:30 pm after the fireworks. This will take place on our sports field and we’ll have multiple food vendors, games, inflatables, and live music! I’ll be sharing the Gospel around 8:30 pm…so, pray for me, please!

Yes, it’s been a Big Week and there’s more to come. We’ll be baptizing 7 people on Sunday! And guess what…I’m going to be worn out! But, it will be a good tired and I’m hoping to take my foot off the gas just a little next week. We’ll not be having mid-week services on July 3rd to let our people rest. They will have earned it after this Big Week!

Here’s this week’s Two-Minute Tuesday. It’s about the power of the government and future Supreme Court rulings! I ask and seek to answer the question: “Can the Government Tell Us What to Believe?” Take a look here:

https://www.mpbc.church/media/?sapurl=Lys3ZWViL2xiL21pLytxa2h0ZnF0P2JyYW5kaW5nPXRydWUmZW1iZWQ9dHJ1ZQ==

Little did I know that on Tuesday this would be coming out of California…as reported by World at http://www.world.wng.org.

The California State Assembly passed a resolution on Monday calling on religious leaders and others with “moral influence” to affirm homosexuality and transgenderism. The resolution asks counselors, pastors, churches, educators, schools, legislators, and others to avoid supporting traditional and Biblical views of sexuality, which the measure claims can cause suicide and depression. The text of the resolution includes philosophical statements about the nature of human sexuality and a broad condemnation of so-called “conversion therapy,” which it says “has been rejected as ineffective, unethical, and harmful.”

More than two dozen doctors, counselors, activists, and other Christian leaders signed a letter condemning the resolution, which they said violates religious freedom. “Religious leaders have the constitutionally protected right to teach religious doctrine in accordance with their faith, and politicians have no right to tell clergy what is moral, dictate the content of their sermons, or instruct them in religious counseling,” they wrote.

Democratic Assemblyman Evan Low introduced the resolution earlier this month after pulling his controversial bill last year that would have banned any attempt to change sexual orientation—even when a person has unwanted same-sex attraction. As a resolution, ACR 99 does not have the force of law. It will now go to the state Senate for a vote.

I’m not even sure what to say to that. I guess I shouldn’t be surprised, but I am. I read this line in that first paragraph twice:

The resolution asks counselors, pastors, churches, educators, schools, legislators, and others to avoid supporting traditional and Biblical views of sexuality…

Wow! I’m still shaking my head. I could never do that. Ever.

“And ever man did that which was right in his own eyes.” Judges 17:6

The Bible is our guide and it is God’s Word, period! To reject it is to reject truth. Those who do so will suffer the consequences of ruined lives. Lord have mercy on us all.

Kevin

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What are the important things in your life? I’m sure many things come to mind: salvation, family, church, your job, your home, etc. I’m thankful for so many things. Truly, this past weekend I was reminded of how grateful I am for my family. This past Friday I was able to go with my family to Tweetsie! I love that place!

Thomas the Tank Engine was there!

Can you tell I love my wife!!! I’m so grateful for her! She puts up a lot with me! I work a lot of hours and she is an amazing lady!

She out these two cuties!

It was Milly’s first trip…but, she slept through most of it! 🙂

Of course you have to get some Dippin’ Dots…

Clara loves Dippin’ Dots!!!

Andrew and Evie!

I had to laugh…

Clara’s legs are so long that she really didn’t need the steps. She was giving me the evil eye because I was laughing so hard!

Charlotte and I rode the chairlift together…

The kids love the petting zoo…

Evie is a hoot! She feeds the goats one kernel at a time…

I’m too old to ride those spinning rides any longer…because my head would be spinning for hours afterwards! 🙂

It was a great day! Truly it’s one of the best days I’ve had in a long time! It’s nice to get away for a few hours and just be Daddy and Papa! I’m reminded of the need of rest from the work from time to time.

The weekend continued with Father’s Day! I’m grateful for my sister, Kim who snapped this shot…

We had a Father’s Day meal at my Mom and Dad’s Saturday night. See that man in the middle…David Brown. I love that man with all my heart! He’s the best dad in the world. I mean that! He’s the most kind, generous, giving man I’ve ever known. I’ll never be half the man he is…but, I’m grateful to seek to follow in his footsteps. I love you Pop!

We played basketball and had a great time! And just enjoyed chatting!

Kim enjoyed holding Milly! (Can you tell that Milly is a loved, little girl!)

Can you tell I love my newest granddaughter…

She was absolutely knocked out when I was holding her. They wanted me to wake her up…but, I couldn’t do it! 🙂

Sunday was wonderful at church… In that it was Father’s Day…we ended up with prayer at the altar! Dads were praying over their family!

 

That was such a sweet time! I said this on Facebook!

“Dads, yesterday was Father’s Day, and we gathered at the altar to recommit ourselves to be like Noah, who: “built an ark to save his household…” Hebrews 11:7. So, how will this week look different from last week in being intentional to see that we are leading our families to our ark, Jesus Christ? This will take time, effort, and commitment. If we put in much concerted effort into leading our children to discover the power and presence of Jesus in their lives. If we do…then, we can proclaim: “I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the truth” 3 John 4. And that’s better than anything they might ever do monetarily, athletically or academically. So, let’s pull out that Bible tonight and do this!”

If you know me…you know how much I love reaching out to the men! Sunday was just that! As you look at those two pictures from our services on Sunday, you’ll see youth and children. I had a lady send this to me and the other pastors (Pastor Brad and Pastor Dale) this past weekend, and it blessed my heart.

Hello All!
You may have seen this, but it’s worth a reread. I feel like it mimics the sentiments of our church for all families, but particularly those with younger kids.

Take your kids to church.
Make the effort. Wake them up early. Fool with the belts and the buckles and the fancy hair bows. Endure the sleepy, grumpy faces and the misplaced shoes. Run around like mad people gathering everybody’s everything and trying to get out the door on time. Hop to the car with a shoe in one hand and keys in the other. Give those babies a pop-tart and some milk and let ‘em eat it in the car. If its raining, get wet. If its cold, get a jacket. If you’re tired, go tired. But take those babies to church. You know why?

Because JESUS is there.

He’s there. And He’ll meet them there. And you too, parents.
He’ll be there in the sweet smile of their Sunday School teacher as she greets them into their room. He’ll be there in the goldfish and the apple juice and the filling of their little bellies and hearts. He’ll be there in the hug from a sweet friend and the encouraging smile that assures you that they “just barely made it” too. He’ll be there in the sacred words read from the Bible speaking truth to their little impressionable hearts. He’ll be there in the worship and the raised hands and the watery eyes and whispers of praise.

So take them. Carry all of their Bibles and drawings and toilet paper tube creations. Sit by them in worship. Open your Bible and open theirs. Show them how to find the scripture the pastor is preaching from. Show them how to worship. Explain to them why He’s worthy of worship. Let them see you laugh and cry and praise and study. Forgive their wiggles and paper rustles and know that they’re listening even when it seems like they aren’t. Ask them questions and answer the ones they ask you. Introduce them to Jesus. Tell them of His greatness – his power – his faithfulness. Tell them with your words and show them with your life. Tell them what he’s done for you and how you’ve been changed by His grace and forgiveness and goodness and love. Tell them how they can be too. Point them to Jesus. Over and over and over again.

Take your kids to church. They’ll love it there. It’s the only place where they can go and just be themselves. They don’t have to “be” good enough or smart enough or athletic enough. They don’t have to perform for approval or achievement. They just get to go and hear how much God loves them. Just because they’re them. Just because He created them, they’re valued. Wanted. Their worth isn’t based on the grades they make or their ability to throw a curveball. Its not dependent on their performance or skill level. And they need a little more of that, don’t you think? A little more grace and a little less pressure. A little more love and a few less demands.

Take them to church. Before you take them to the ballfield or the dance studio or the gym. Before you take them on vacation or to grandma’s or to the backyard to play. Take them to church. Let them know its a priority. Show them it has eternal value. Let them see you set aside schedules and extra curricular activities and work and busy-ness to be present with the Lord in His house. I promise you won’t regret it. I promise you it won’t return back void.
Take them to church.

I promise it’s worth it.

“But Jesus said, ‘Let the children come to me and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven.”
Matthew 19:14A

All I can say is: “Amen and amen!”

Kandace and Clark had has down to their house for dessert Monday night. It’s hard to believe that she’s married and she and Clark have their own house!

My loves holding Milly! Doesn’t Katy look great! She’s an awesome mom, wife and Christian example of a lady! Pop is the patriarch and rock of the family!

Kandace decorated so nicely…and Charlotte and Evie…

It was a fantastic weekend! I’m grateful!

This week’s Two Minute Tuesday asks: “Do You Love Your Spouse?” Take a look and see what you think…

http://link.mpbc.church/TMT6-18

Kevin

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Seeking Jesus

I’ve been thinking about what it means to seek Jesus a lot over the last several weeks…actually the last 3 months. I’ve asked myself, “Kevin, are you really seeking Jesus or are you just going through the motions?” Now, I’m not trying to be super-spiritual and I’m not trying to be ethereal or out in left field. I’m simply saying, I believe there is a pursuit of Jesus that I’ve been missing. And I think a lot of people are missing it.

It seems to me that we’ve gotten to the place in our evangelism that we bring people to Jesus and we stop. We get people saved and then what? It’s like every service, every message has to be the same. And that’s needed! Of course we’ve got to get people to Jesus, but Jesus said we are to: “Go and make disciples…” Do you see that word: DISCIPLE. He didn’t say, “Go and make converts…” Conversion is the first step…yes…but there is more! We’ve got to be teaching people! We’ve got to be growing people. We’ve got teach people how to climb in their faith toward Jesus! That’s what we’ve been saying this year…

The question is…how much time does it take to climb? Can you hike a mountain in 2 minutes? Let me ask you this…can you and I seek Jesus in 2 minutes? Can He be found in our 20-second prayers over our meals or the prayer that’s quickly uttered as we fall asleep? Can we never read the Word of God and expect to call ourselves disciples of Christ? There is nothing disciplined about that.

Disciple

Discipline

Those two words have the same root! If we want to truly be a disciple, we are going to have to be disciplined. It’s no different than a ball team. They have to practice before they play. They must run, work-out, lift weights…eat right…you name it. It takes discipline to make champions. And you know what…the same is true as believers in Christ. God is person and He desires to be wanted. I’ll say that again: He desires to be wanted. Just like you desire to be wanted. Don’t you want to be wanted? Loved? Sure you do! So do I! After all, we are created in the image of God and it’s our spirits that must seek Him (for He is Spirit).

Lately, I’ve been trying to retrain my mind to think on Jesus. To set my mind on things above. But, some might say, “Kevin, be careful that you don’t get so heavenly minded that you are no earthly good.” Can I say this kindly to you… I’ve never met any single person that I believe were “too heavily minded.” I see people who are attached to this earth. I see that so much in myself. I spend so much time thinking about myself and my needs and my wants and my comfort and my desires… My problem is me. And your problem is probably you. It’s easy for the universe to revolve around ourselves.

I had to go to a place that I died to myself. And that’s a daily thing… Jesus said it would be a daily thing! And boy is it! It feels like some days I’m taking some major ground in moving up that mountain and other days I’m stuck or even losing ground. What do I mean?

I’m seeking the Lord throughout the day in that I’m trying to think about Him as I live life. I’m thinking about Him as I drive. I honestly don’t listen to the radio much anymore. I just keep it off and talk to the Lord. It’s been an amazing thing how much time I’ve gained. Folks, He wants to talk to us. He’s waiting! But, the truth is…we like our “noise.” We walk into our homes and we flip on the TV. We get in the car and we’re on the radio. We have an idle moment and we grab the phone to check social media. Believe me…I’m chief of sinners! And so, I’m seeking to NOT do these things as much. Am I becoming a hermit? No! But, there is something to be said for mediating on the Lord. There’s something to be said for “being still and know that He is God.”

Can you get still? For how long? 5 minutes? 10? Maybe that’s scary. Maybe you don’t want to be alone with your thoughts. Sometimes that can be scary… I must admit that! But, listen…you and I are not alone…not as followers of Christ! He’s with us! His Spirit dwells in our spirit and He bears witness with us. But, can we hear Him? Are we hearing from Him?

The Lord wants a relationship with us. He wants to talk to us. That’s why He came to die. He came so that we can know Him…and that we might not only be with Him forever in heaven, but have Him to guide our lives on this side of glory. I can tell you this…as I’ve been thinking on Jesus and focusing my mind more and more on Him, I’m changing in my spirit. There is more joy and more of a sense of peace and ease in my soul. I’m not as easily upset or “torn out of my frame” on things that really don’t matter.

The Scripture says:

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you. Philippians 4:8-9

How can we grow in our faith? Simple. Go after Jesus! Ask and it shall be given…seek and you will find…knock and the door will be opened. All of that requires action! Go! Go! Go! Or in my vernacular these days…Climb, climb, climb!

It means when I’m walking through the parking lot at the hospital I look at the sky and see the clouds and I think, “Jesus, thank you for watching over me and caring for me and for what you will do to give me the words for this situation and this family.” Before I walk into my home and turn the handle on my door, I think, “Lord, help me to have saved enough of my time and patience to be what my family needs me to be for them tonight.” It’s driving down the road with the kids in the back of the van and saying, “Hey guys…look at the window…tell me what you see. Who made that?” It’s training our minds to “see” and “hear” with our spirit. Do you see? It’s just an intentional mindset and it’s that intentionality that’s slowly but surely changing this bald-headed man. I’m actually experiencing the presence of Jesus more and more in my life! It’s wonderful!!

Therefore, in the light of what I’ve just written, here’s this week’s TMT:

http://mpbc.ws/media/?sapurl=Lys3ZWViL2xiL21pLytmMzV2cmN0P2F1dG9wbGF5PXRydWUmYnJhbmRpbmc9dHJ1ZSZlbWJlZD10cnVl

Kevin

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Snow is in the forecast again and I’m telling you…we’re not done with it after this round this weekend. Weather runs via patterns. Once a pattern sets up…it’s hard to break it. Hmmm…sounds like habits. You know… old habits are hard to break. It seems it works in the weather too. Here’s the forecast for snow through the end of the month via weatherbell.com.

I guess Andrew will need to be ready to do this again…

I don’t think we’re in for another 18-20″ but I do believe we could see 3-6″ if snow and ice doesn’t cut into it. It does look to be cold enough to be frozen for NW North Carolina. And I’m saying it now…look out for the following weekend. Remember, when a pattern sets up, it’s hard for that pattern to be eroded during a season. It’s been so wet for the year 2018 and going into 2019, I still believe we’ll see that flow out of the Gulf.

I must say this past Sunday was a gut-wrenching Sunday for me. Preaching the message on “Consider Jesus” was one of the most spiritually and emotionally rigorous messages I’ve ever preached. I was wrung out Sunday afternoon. I had nothing left. I believe the Lord used it and will continue to use it. Why? Because I shared my heart and I held nothing back and I admitted my failures and faults in hopes that transparency would help others. I pray it does.

Many have asked when it will be loaded to the App and the website (www.mpbc.ws). The truth is…I’m not sure. It normally takes about a week to edit the messages for the website and the TV stations we’re on (Spectrum/Charter and Wilkes Communications). But, the holidays have slowed things down a bit. Keep checking back. I did my Two-Minute Tuesday on the subject earlier today. “Do You Have Peace with God? Are You Pursuing God?” Here you go: http://mpbc.ws/media/?sapurl=Lys3ZWViL2xiL21pLyszamZ5d3JuP2F1dG9wbGF5PXRydWUmYnJhbmRpbmc9dHJ1ZSZlbWJlZD10cnVl

With that theme…we’re hoping to climb the mountain…like Moriah…like Sinai…and like our Lord did (Calvary) and seek to experience His presence and power in our lives. I pray we can experience the presence of the Lord in our everyday lives… To the point that we will desire to pursue the presence of Jesus in our lives more than we desire to pamper our lives. However we will only experience the presence of the Lord to the degree that we deny ourselves and take up our cross and follow Him.

Abraham had to offer up Isaac in order to get him back. I literally had to offer up my family and even my voice in order to get them back. It was a death in each area of my life. I grieved as if it all really happened (lost my family and my voice and subsequently my career as a pastor). (Note: this probably sounds crazy as you read that…but, you’ll just have to watch the message at some point to understand it.)

Have I said lately how much I love these two guys…

Dale Jennings and Brad Cordray. I’m blessed to serve with these guys and I praise the Lord for them. I thought it was a good picture. They make me look pretty swell, don’t they! 🙂

 

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On The Way To Israel!

Next Monday morning, we’re on our way to Israel! Wow! I can’t believe it! I never thought I’d get back there again! It’s without question one of the greatest experiences of my life! I am honestly more excited this time around than I was in 2007, when I went the first time. Why? Because I know what to expect and I get to go with my wife! I remember back in 2007 that I had goose bumps so much…that I stopped having the ability to have goosebumps after the 3rd day. It was amazing!

I’ve had the privilege of traveling to many places in the world…including Hawaii…but, nothing touches the place where Jesus walked. I guess it’s just the way I’m wired. But, it’s the truth. I’m so thankful to be able to go back and to do it with 37 other people. It’s going to be a wonderful time of seeing and experiencing where the Lord Jesus (God in the flesh) walked this earth 2000 years ago.

Here was our group from 2007.

I was traveling with a group from Old Town Baptist Church in Winston-Salem and pastor Rick Speas. He is just to my left in the picture. He was a pastor here at Mt. Pleasant for 9 years. He is a blessing in my life to this day!

In case you are interested…here is the itinerary for the trip if you want to follow along…

I’ll be sharing on Sunday, November 18th about the trip during all three services, including pictures and some video vignettes, as well. It will be the Sunday before Thanksgiving and what better way to be thankful than to be reminded of all that Jesus did for us…by actually seeing where He did them!

We had a great time carving pumpkins this year…

It’s a family affair and I love the blessing of doing it all together. Oh the traditions! Aren’t they great!

Look how diligent Josh and Clark are being! Can you tell they are getting into it! Total concentration! Kandace is laughing at Clark because he’s being so detailed. That’s a guy thing! We work like it’s the most important thing in the world. I laughed out loud as I was taking the picture…because I had just “been in the zone” myself with the pumpkin I was carving. 🙂

I’m looking forward to a great time for Trunk or Treat at the church tonight!

Our theme is a “dragway” this year. See the light tree in the background! And how about the “trunks” of the cars? Cute, huh! Get it “Trunk” or Treat! Last year we had over 1,000 people go through the church! That’s amazing! The people kept telling us: “Thank you for providing a safe place for our kids to come and get candy and for feeding us, etc.” We provide a hot dog supper and great candy (good stuff…you know…Snickers and Reece’s and Kit Kat, and Milky Way…not the cheap candy). We want folks to know we care for them.

It’s been asked… “If your church ceased to exist, would your community miss it?” Did you read that carefully? Not “would your CHURCH MEMBERS miss it,” but “COMMUNITY.” So often we can get locked into “tithing to ourselves.” Are we really meaning anything to the community? While they are at Trunk or Treat, they’ll leave with information about the church and about Jesus.

“Lord, help people to know that they are loved by you!”

Here’s the Two-Minute Tuesday this week: “The State of Theology-What Do People Really Believe in 2018?” You might be surprised. I was! Things are actually improving!

http://mpbc.ws/media/?sapurl=Lys3ZWViL2xiL21pLytmNXY2dno3P2JyYW5kaW5nPXRydWUmZW1iZWQ9dHJ1ZQ==

Off to Israel! 🙂

Kevin

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