Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Holy Week Schedule Reminders

Midweek Worship Service will not be held tonight at the Shiloh Church in observance of Holy Week.

We will meet instead for a special Good Friday Service at 12 Noon. If you are available (and your local church does not have something scheduled), join us as we worship our all-sufficient Prophet, Priest, and King - the Lord Jesus Christ. Or you can catch us online at

On Thursday evening we will worship with Pastor Ernie Murray and the St. Thomas Baptist Church here in Jacksonville for their annual Holy Week Revival. Our mass choir will lead the musical praise and I am scheduled to bring the message. That service begins at 7 PM at 5863 Moncrief Road.

Remember, Shiloh members, our 3-1-6 evangelism effort this week. We are praying for three unsaved and/or unchurched people every day over these six days of Holy Week with the goal of bringing one guest to worship with us on Easter Sunday.

May you continue to have a blessed and Christ-centered Holy Week.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Speaking @ Word Fellowship Reformed Baptist Church

I am in Greensboro, North Carolina, preaching for my friend Keelan Atkinson. I started Sunday night. I will conclude the meeting tonight.

I have know Keelan for some years now. This may be the fourth time I have come to Greensboro to preach for him. Keelan's young church - only several years old - has been very kind and encouraging to me over the years. And I am glad to be here to minister the word of God to them.

Pastor Atkinson is the one who recommended me to the leadership of Shiloh during their pastoral search. I still blame him for me being in Jacksonville! LOL!!!

Please remember the final night of this meeting in your prayers.

By the way, this past weekend - Friday and Sunday - I was speaking at a conference hosted by the African American Ministries Department of the Baptist General Convention of Texas. It was a good meeting.

Saturday, as I was making my way home, I had a flight delay in Houston. Then I missed my connection to Jacksonville. So I was stuck in Dallas for the night. My flight was scheduled to arrive at Jacksonville at 10 AM. But it snowed overnight in Dallas. So we were delayed, as they removed snow and ice from the plane.

When I finally arrived in Jacksonville, church was over. In fact, I was a little more than a hour away from my flight from Jacksonville. So I repacked my bag with the things Crystal brought and rechecked it for my flight to Greensboro. I sat with Crystal and the kids for a few, and then headed here.

I have never, ever had a weekend of travel like that. And I hope it never happen agains.

Thanks to the entire staff and leaders of SMBC for stepping up and filling during our mini-crisis. And thanks to the entire Shiloh family for covering me in prayer as I travel to minister the word of God.

I look forward to seeing you tomorrow night for our Midweek Worship Service.

God bless.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Notes from Sunday - 3/7/10

Yesterday was another wonderful day of worship and fellowship at the Shiloh Metropolitan Baptist Church of Jacksonville.

I was not feeling well physically. But the Lord gave me strength to get through the day and blessed our worship services in a rich and powerful way.

We celebrated the Lord’s Table in both of our worship services yesterday. I believe it is one of the highest times of worship when the saints commune together to deliberately remember the Person and Work of Christ in the manner he prescribed.

I taught my New Members Class yesterday for the first time in about two months. It was great to be with our new members and to teach them about the essential elements of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

It was good to meet some of the guests who joined us for worship yesterday.

Our new Youth Pastor, Andrae Robinson, led the congregation worship song – “Here I Am To Worship.” It is a beautiful song. I hope it will become a regular part of our worship life.

We had special guests yesterday. The Concert Choir (not Gospel Choir) of Florida A&M University (FAMU) led the musical praise in our 10 AM worship service. Their two musical selections were very good.

I preached on “The Freedom of Forgiveness” from Matthew 18:21-35.

The Lord sovereignly “tricked” me into preaching this sermon. I had been working on a message from Luke. But the Lord took it from me about 5 AM Sunday morning. As reverently as I could, I told the Lord he had 15 minutes to share with me what the agenda for the day was. When the Lord led me to a message on forgiveness, I protested. I did not think my congregation was ready for this message. But it was 5:30 AM. I was too desperate to argue. So I did what the Lord was leading me to do. And he proved, as he always does, that he knows what is best for his people. Praise God!

In his book, The Power and Freedom of Forgiveness, John MacArthur argues that most spiritual problems are rooted in either guilt (the need to receive forgiveness) or bitterness (the need to express forgiveness). I agree.

Praise God for all who were saved and added to the church in our worship services yesterday!

I am tempted to say what next Sunday’s sermon will be. But the way things have been going the past few weeks, I had better just keep my mouth shut and wait and see!

I had several important announcements that I wanted to emphasize yesterday. And I did not make any announcements in either service. Oh well.

A brief testimony: I am starting to have fun learning how to pastor Shiloh.

Crystal and I tried to watch the Oscars last night. But we had not seen most of the movies that were winning the awards. So we did more fast more fast forwarding through it, rather than actually watching it. Let the church say, TiVo!