Monthly Archives: May 2010

El Paso by Faith

Yesterday I bid my sad farewell to my friends and colleagues at First Baptist Church Canyon. Over the past nearly nine years we have had an amazing journey of faith. The love between pastor and people ran very deep which made yesterday all the more difficult.

When I returned home drained and fatigued from the emotion of it all. My mind raced and my spirit trembled at the magnitude of what I was facing. In a matter of days I would serve a new people in a forward Kingdom assignment. Some may wondered why would I risk the security and safety of my calling to Canyon to take on the assignment of serving the LORD alongside the people of First Baptist El Paso?

The answer is quite simple–I believe I am “called” to go. This call from on high is my inspiration and my reason. It is my hope and my promise. It will give me courage when I am afraid. It will give me vision when I feel lost or wandering in the storm. It will encourage me when the signs around discourage my heart and passion. It will remind me that I am never alone in the adventure. The call is a relationship with the one who calls. It is His voice that beckons me to come. My answer must always be “yes” to His invitation.

Yesterday morning from Romania my father by blood emailed me these words of encouragement from Oswald Chambers. These words were life to me.

Jesus Christ demands of the man who trusts Him the same reckless sporting spirit that the natural man exhibits. If a man is going to do anything worth while, there are times when he has to risk everything on his leap, and in the spiritual domain Jesus Christ demands that you risk everything you hold by common sense and leap into what He says, and immediately you do, you find that what He says fits on as solidly as common sense. At the bar of common sense Jesus Christ’s statements may seem mad; but bring them to the bar of faith, and you begin to find with awestruck spirit that they are the words of God. Trust entirely in God, and when He brings you to the venture, see that you take it. We act like pagans in a crisis, only one out of a crowd is daring enough to bank his faith in the character of God.

In the Kingdom there is no vocabulary or grammatical construction for “yes…but.” Either Jesus is LORD or all or not lord at all.

Some may feel I have lost my way, but if so, God be praise because I choose to live a life without regrets after the voice that beckons “Come follow me.”

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Call to El Paso

The Baptist grapevine is humming with rumors that I am moving to El Paso to be the new pastor of the First Baptist Church. Let me put these rumors to rest–IT IS ABSOLUTELY TRUTH!

This past Sunday (May 16th) I was called by the people of FBC El Paso to serve the LORD together with them. As you might imagine this decision came after much prayer and soul-searching on my part, and on the part of my family. Our call to El Paso was confirmed in my spirit early on Tuesday morning April 6th just days before our first visit to the city. During my quiet time, I read these words of Moses to Joshua:

“Be strong and courageous, for you must go with this people into the land that the LORD swore to their forefathers to give them, and you must divide it among them as their inheritance. 8 The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”Deut 31:7-8 (NIV)

As I read these words God burned them on my heart. It was then and there I knew without doubt the Lord Jesus had called us to “be strong and courageous” by following Him into the future. As I reflected on Joshua’s calling to go, it struck me as odd that the LORD never used the word “lead” when He spoke of his assignment. Rather Moses said, “The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you.” The heart of leadership is really about following. Following the LORD wherever He leads.

Today I am walking through the days of sorrow. I am saying goodbye to friends and fellow laborers who served with me so faithful in Canyon. Canyon has become home to me and my children. I will leave here richer for having served among these great people of the Panhandle.

I covet your prayers as Robyn, Madison, and myself plant our lives in El Paso. We believe without doubt God wants to do something very special in the “Borderplex” as one of the members taught me to say. It’s our prayer that the news out of El Paso/Juarez in the coming days will bring glory and honor to God!

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