May 29, 2012
In 1951 Baptist Hospital opens a 140 bed facility in Pensacola. This health care operation has deep Christian roots. It has expanded in our area and it a major part of Northwest Florida.
Today Mr. Mark Faulkner becomes the 4th President and CEO of Baptist Health. He and his wife Olympia are faithful members at Olive. I look forward to having a part in the program at his installation celebration this afternoon.
Pray for Mark. This is a big job. And it provides a remarkable platform for the Gospel.
All of us have a platform. Will you use yours for the Gospel?
May 25, 2012
In any church the guy up front gets much of the attention. However, if he does not have a group of servants to serve with he will not be very successful. Today we honored to one of the best at Olive.
Cindy Segreto has served at Olive for almost fifteen years. Her work in the pastoral ministries office has been outstanding.
She has suffered with serious health issues for some time. I listened at her retirement luncheon as her co-workers spoke about her hard work, team spirit, positive attitude and diligent labor.
Cindy and her husband Tony are servants and what makes Olive work. She will be greatly missed in our office.
May 22, 2012
Words can mean different things to different people. Last night I tweeted and posted to Facebook that Bobby Cassavah had been called up by the Angels and I was praying for him. I went on to say he was sitting in the bullpen in Oakland.
Several people read only the first line and decided Bobby had died. He plays baseball for the LA Angels and had been on the 15 day disabled list. He was called back to the big leagues on Monday. The Major Leagues are the big time but not heaven.
Watch how we say or write words today. But also listen and read carefully to not misunderstand. Good communication is essential.
May 18, 2012
I read this week about the struggle with dementia in our older generation. It is a wicked disease. And then a spiritual application was drawn.
In the church we often live in the past. We only think and talk of things from forty years ago. We ignore the present and give no thought to the future.
While we dare not forget the past. We must live in the here and now. And we must dream dreams.
Further reading:Psalm 126:1.
May 15, 2012
Sunday morning I shared my heart about the need for boldness in our culture. My pledge is to renew my heart and mind in a steadfast posture of truth, caring not what the world thinks.
On Monday WEAR Channel 3 called asking for my thoughts on the same sex marriage issue. So the cameras came by for a talk. I ask your prayers that I will be wise as a serpent and harmless as a dove.
O God, send revival in the church!
May 11, 2012
This week President Obama came out in favor of same sex marriage. I wrote about this in my Tuesday blog after VP Biden lead the way. It is going to be very difficult to have a discussion about this issue. Passion runs high on both sides.
However, it is critical we be able to articulate a position that is Biblical, intelligent and uses natural law. Many will not listen and just call you a bigot or suggest you are living in the Stone Age.
If the Stone Age includes the Ten Commandments written on stone, count me in. If the President is correct on this one, then God owes an apology to Sodom and Gomorrah.
May 8, 2012
Today North Carolina voters go to the polls. One item on the ballot is a constitutional amendment that defines marriage as between a man and a woman. It is hard to believe we are debating this issue in America.
A few days ago Vice President Biden said he was absolutely comfortable with same sex marriage. The next day Secretary of Education Arne Duncan endorsed marriage equality. Their boss, President Obama, has said while he opposes same sex marriage his view is evolving. This is a hotly debated topic in our nation.
So what are we to think? Many wonder what the problem is with allowing people of the same sex to marry. What will it hurt? This is a slippery slope. If we allow marriage between same sex individuals what keeps the definition from including three or more? Or what of wedding between siblings? Or why not marriage across species like a man and a goat? Many say that is foolish talk. We would never allow such. Not many years ago we said that of same sex marriage.
In reality same sex marriage is not marriage at all. Biblical and natural law tells us that marriage is a two-in-one-flesh communion of persons. This communion is consummated by sexual acts that are reproductive. Only a man and a woman can be capable of human procreation. This is true even if the couple is incapable of having children due to infertility.
Romans 1:24-27 speaks of the same sex act as being unnatural. You see, same sex marriage is not marriage at all. Marriage is a basic building block of society and reproduction is a large part of that. Same sex partners are physically incapable of marriage. Only male and female can become one flesh.
Praying today for North Carolina voters to do the right thing.
May 4, 2012
For the past several months I have been working with our Personnel Committee at Olive regarding a staff addition. For the past two years we have talked of adding an Executive Pastor to our team. This gentleman would be like a Chief Operating Officer. He would work to make sure the staff and church stay on task to carry out our mission. This will free the pastor from many day to day things that can keep him from being on focus with preaching, shepherding and big picture mentality. Our personnel team funded the new position in this year’s budget. The Finance Team included it in our new budget in April. I am in the process of searching for this man. I ask for your prayers.
Today I am doing the funeral for Conrad Noel. He was one of the finest deacons I have ever served with. I will miss him greatly!
May 1, 2012
It was one year ago the Seal Team 6 received orders from the President to raid the compound of Osama Bin Ladin. It was a day of victory and celebration. I wrote and spoke of the over zealousness of our response as a nation. A terrorist died. That was good and should have happened.
But for us to party in the streets made us look like something I had not seen in America before. This was not the end of a war. It was not troops coming home after a surrender. This was the killing of a criminal. I just think we are better than that.
Today I am reminded young men and women are in harms way. They are there and they protect us. Thank God for them. Say thank you! It is just fine to shake their hand or give a hug. Be grateful. This is America. Be proud but walk with humility.