Sunday, August 31, 2008

Silence is NOT Golden (Part II)

On Saturday, we left with a question to ponder. When has Christ come to me and said, "Do not be silent"? I told you I had a story, but first I must introduce who this involves. I met him back in 2003 when I was attending Friendship Baptist Church in Warner Robins. He was the lead pastor their and an absolutely humble, gentle, and God fearing man. His name is Tim, and he had a most profound story to tell one morning during his sermon. Here it is (in as close a detail as I can remember):

One day, Tim was driving his beat up old Honda down a typical Georgia farm road outside Warner Robins. As he was driving by a field, he spotted a farmer far out there on his tractor, tending to the field and preparing it for next season's planting. As he was driving, the Spirit started laying hard on his heart that he needed to talk with this farmer. The past few years had been particularly hard on Georgia with drought. At first, Tim hesitated. He drove on past the field, but before he got very far, he was convicted to pull a U-turn and go back down the road to where the farmer was working. As he reached an area where he could pull over, he stopped, got out of his car on the side of the road, and, in the suit and nice dress shoes he normally wore to the church, he started trudging off through the newly plowed field full of dust and Georgia red clay. As he walked, the farmer looked up from his tractor and gave the funniest look a farmer could give watching a man come cross his field in a suit and dress shoes. But, that farmer still shut down his tractor and got down to meet the nicely dressed man. Tim then proceeded to tell the farmer what he was doing in his field. He told him all about the fact that the Spirit had moved him to go out there and talk with the farmer, and let him simply know that whatever was happening in his life, God was watching him and looking down upon him with longing to know him personally. The farmer broke down about all that had been happening in his life. All the financial troubles with the farm, the drought, and how his life felt empty for some reason. Tim told the farmer about the endless, unconditional love of Jesus Christ and there, right in the middle of that field, the farmer committed his life to following Christ and having a relationship with Him.

I tell you this story because so many of us have a longing to talk with those in need about Jesus Christ, to tell them about all the love He has poured out upon us and how our lives have been changed because of Him. I also want to inspire you, as Tim inspired me, to go out on that limb and follow, without question, where God is leading us. I am not going to lie: it is hard, sometimes ugly work and there will be rejection (I hate rejection). And I would be a total fool to say that I have always listened to the pin-pricks of the Spirit moving me to talk with someone. But if we will trust in God to know what is best, and keep ourselves from questioning what work He has for us, imagine how we can impact the world? We must look past our own insecurities and toward the future rewards of Heaven. Not for us, but for those who do not have the relationship we do with Christ.

Try this on for size: Have you ever wanted to spite someone so bad you could taste it? Turn that spite towards our nemisis (Satan) and talk with someone about Christ. It could change their world................. and yours.

Posting from the cheap seats (in the words of my great friend Dale),
Jesus Freak Out!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Number 9 on the List

Any Metallica fans in the crowd? I know that I am. Lars Ulrich is one of the best double bass drummers of our time. But did you know they wrote a song about the plague that God sent on the first born sons of Egypt back in Exodus? See for yourself, just make sure you look at the lyrics for the original version and none of the live versions. So at number 9 on the list of "When Non-Christian Musicians Unintentionally Reference Christ":

Band: Metallica
Album: Ride the Lightning
Song: Creeping Death
Lyrics: All of them

Okay, so they may have meant this, but those listening may not know.

Rockin' out with my God out,
Jesus Freak Out!

Silence is NOT Golden (Part I)

I used to fight with my brother and sister like it was going out of style. Boy did we have some good ones. We would yell at each other a lot, but our favorite phrase was "Shut UP!" That got mom and dad hotter than the surface of the sun. But in our journey called life, Christ does not want us to shut up. He doesn't want us to stop talking. He wants us to talk to everyone we can until we are blue in the face.

In Acts chapter 18, Paul went to Corinth from Athens to begin ministering to the church their. One night while he was sleeping, God came to him in a vision and said (NIV),"(9).... Do not be afraid, keep on speaking, do not be silent. (10) For I am with you and no one is going to attack or harm you, because I have many people in this city."

Think about this until next time: When has Christ come to me and said, "Do not be silent"? Think of all the times we were silent and could have made the difference. Monday, I have a story about not being silent.

Stay tuned,
Jesus Freak Out!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Tough Day

"Momma always said there would be days like this." Well one of those days happened to me today (Thursday). I am sorry that I am not going to make a post today but I am slap worn out. As you all know, I am a flight instructor. As such, the toughest thing to do is let a private pilot student go solo without you there in the airplane to take control if something bad is happening. What's even more un-nerving, is letting that person fly away to another airport and land, and then take off and come back: the solo cross country flight.

Well, today, I ask that you pray for my student: we will call the student T. T had an accident today on a solo cross country flight. T is fine and walked away from it, but I don't know that T is going to come back to flying. The emotional damage is done. T is one of my favorite students and a hard worker when it comes to flying. I'm not sure that T could have done anything more. She did all she was taught and yesterday's post bodes well in this situation too. Things happen and machines break.

Here is your tidbit for today: I surrendered to God like I try to in most situations like this. What I mean is, when I got the call that something had happened, my first thought was for T's safety, my second thought was selfish (basically making sure my bases were covered), and third thought (which should have been second after T's safety) was that God had total control over this situation. Integrity, honesty and submission to God were all tested for me today. But this solidified an already known belief in Christ: He is in control. The more we try to control our own situation, the more we make the situation worse. As Thousand Foot Krutch says in one of their songs, "It falls apart, from the very start, when I walk away from You."

Please pray for T,
Jesus Freak Out!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Good Game

Now I know that many of us have watched pro or college football at some point in our lives. The funniest part of any game is to see grown men patting each other on the butt. Imagine if we went around church each sunday and started patting one another on the butt saying,"Good Game!" each time we heard about someone coming to Christ? Does encouragement in our faith have to be physical? Of course not. Words of encouragement go a long way, but seeing the fruits of God's grace at work through your faith in His power go even further.

In Romans (NIV), Paul was writing to the believers in Rome about his upcoming visit. In the first chapter of his letter, he expresses his longing to see the Roman believers and impart his spiritual gifts upon them. But verse 12 goes to the heart of encouragement in the church: "that is, that you and I may be mutually encouraged by each other's faith." Paul not only wants to encourage believers, he longs to be encouraged by them through their work for Chist. The leaders in our churches know all about this. Their encouragement comes more from seeing non-believers come into a relationship with Christ, as well as seeing other believers out there growing theirs.

Try this on for size: We need to encourage God (thank Him especially) and our Christian mentors by telling them about what we are doing to further other's walks with Christ. Watch them get pumped up because they know that God is working through them. Give them a metaphorical "pat on the butt." They will give it right back.

Inspired by Brian Heckman and the CATB leadership,
Jesus Freak Out!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


Remember roasting marshmellows on a campfire when you were a kid? Then what did you do? You stuck it between 2 graham crackers and a fat piece of Hershey's milk chocolate for a s'more. What a sugar rush! (Of course I mostly watched the marshmellows burn and then just ate the chocolate). I loved s'mores. Ever wonder if God wants us to be marshmellows in the s'more of life? The burning sacrifice to His will and work that makes life so sweet? God, more than anyone, wants us to become so utterly in tune with Him that we sacrifice ourselves for Him without question, just as He sacrificed His son Jesus for us.

If we look at the book of Leviticus, we see deep into the tabernacle ceremonies that were established for worshipping God and atoning for sins. We don't have to perform sacrificial ceremonies anymore because of the new convenant that Jesus established when He died for us. Or do we?

Leviticus 1:2 (NIV) says that "When any of you brings an offering to the Lord, bring as your offering an animal from either the herd or the flock." Am I saying that someone needs to bring their dog to service on Sunday to be sacrificed for sin? Of course not. We now take the place of the animal from the flock, God's flock. We are the sacrifice. Our daily work for Christ is the sacrifice. Taking time out of our day to work for Him is the sacrifice He is now looking for from us. It's not physical anymore (except when working for Blaine), but spiritual.

Try this on for size: Let's take a moment out of our busy schedules and talk with someone. Get to know them and then let them know that we are praying for them. We are sacrificing precious time from our daily grind to first seek God's will and second sacrifice ourselves for someone else's benefit. This is exactly what Jesus did for us on the cross, except on a much grander scale. We cannot match the cross, but we can take the small steps to be closer with Him.

Getting warmer in the fire,
Jesus Freak Out!

Monday, August 25, 2008


Today starts Day 1 of our youth minister's 21 day fast. He is focusing himself on prayer for the youth ministry of our church, as well as for the youth of this nation (see His diet (vegetables and water) is going to mirror that of the prophet Daniel, who was defying and being trained as a servant for, King Nebuchadnezzar (read Daniel chapter 1 for context). Fasting is a very intense way of focusing our mind and soul on nothing but the things of God. It can do wonders for our spiritual nourishment. But, fasting aside, physical food should not be the only sustainment that we have in our lives.

In Matthew 6:4 (NIV), "Jesus answered [Satan], 'It is written: Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.' " This verse comes from the chapter where Jesus went into the desert to be tempted by Satan and after forty days and nights of fasting, was hungry as all get out. Satan was egging Him on to turn stones into bread.

Hal is not living on bread alone, or at all for that matter. Right now, he is focused on the things and words of God. He is seeking that spiritual nourishment and focus for his prayers that only comes with fasting. We cannot sustain our soul on the food of this world. It must be in tune with Christ as we live out our spiritual lives nourished by the words of God. Where do we get these words: from our prayer (especially during fasts) and from scripture.

Try this on for size: We have 2 options in my opinion. First, we can join Hal in fasting like Daniel for the next 20 days and dedicating ourselves to praying for our youth and the youth of this nation. They need all that they can get and I am sure Hal could use a partner! Second, we can focus our efforts on helping new Christ followers in finding that nourishment from the words of God. How do we do that you might say?
- If you are just starting your walk with Christ, first I want to welcome you to the family and praise God! Find a mentor for accountability. Latch onto them and seek their guidance. I would be more than happy to help someone out. Please come find me.
- If you have been walking with Christ for sometime, find someone who has just started their journey. Become that mentor. Seek them out and encourage them. Give them guidance and be there for them as they start the most important journey of their lives. Your personal interaction could be the difference between someone who keeps seeking Christ and someone who falls by the wayside in their walk. Neal, please help me find one of our new 18.

Imagining the possibilities,
Jesus Freak Out!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Sleeping on the Job

I have a pretty intense and sometimes, downright scary job: I teach people to fly airplanes. I can tell you that there are days where I would just assume carry a parachute with me on the airplane or not even get in. There are also days where I almost feel like falling asleep because I have done the same thing over and over. It feels like Groundhog Flight. But, I must stay vigilant and awake to ensure I do not miss anything the student is doing, else I put the lives of the student, the public, and myself in danger.

Imagine doing the same thing when we are working for Christ? When we are just walking down the street, or through the mall, or down the sidewalk at church, are we sleeping on the job of being receptive to what God wants us to do for Him? Proverbs has some of the best advice in the Bible, save Jesus Christ himself. Proverbs 6:10-11 (NIV) has a double meaning when it comes to hard work. "(10) A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest-(11) and poverty will come on you like a bandit and scarcity like an armed man." You can see the simplistic meaning of this passage from the standpoint of daily work ethic. But, if we search deeper than the human meaning for why God may have inspired Solomon to write this, we can see that he was also talking about our quest for reaching those who do not know Him. If we sleep on this job, it could be far worse than someone merely losing their mortal life here on earth. They could lose their eternal life.

Try this on for size: Listen to what God is telling you. Most of the time it is the Spirit speaking to your inner soul. I will tell you what I struggle with: I think too much. Sometimes God is simply spontaneous and wants me to just listen and then do, not think twice if I should or not. Next time you get that prick on your heart, follow what God is telling you: don't think, just do. Let God take care of the rest. That is what he wants from us: total submission to His will.

Trying not to armchair quarterback for God,
Jesus Freak Out!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Sunday Posts

Since God rested on the 7th day, I will as well. I also told the lead pastor at my church that I did not want to make him feel bad for having an inferior message. Yah right. I couldn't come close to delivering a divinely inspired message anywhere in the same ball park as this man, or for that matter, any other pastor I have been associated with. I just wanted to get him going. He took it well.

Anyway, on Sundays, instead of a message, I am going to start a list. Each list will last 10 weeks and have a theme that is based upon pulling from the secular (I hate that word for the fact that it separates us from those who are no different except for their spiritual relationship). I feel that reaching into this realm will help us as Christ followers see that there is the fingerprint of God all over this world, even though it may not be overtly Christian.

So begins the first list.

When Non-Christian Musicians Unintentionally Reference Christ
(context aside, just go with me on this one).
10) From Linkin Park's Minutes to Midnight album
Song: What I've Done
Lyric: so let mercy come, and wash away, what I've done.
A little different, but if you have other ideas for lists, please let me know. They may very well pop up in the next few weeks. If you have things you would like to see added to this list, let me know as well. I'm all ears for ideas for posts and lists. Thanks for the support in this endeavor and I am praying for you all.
Still perching on the end of that limb,
Jesus Freak Out!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Bearing Someone Else's Cross

When I was a Captain in the United States Air Force, I had the pleasure of leading some of the most professional and hard working individuals from across this great country. But, I still had to deal with the problems of people being people. They made their share of mistakes and had to take responsibility for them, but I, as their leader, had to stand right next to them and take responsibility as well as plead for leniency on them. This is not as flawed as you might think. It showed insight into how I could lead them better and where I had to focus my efforts in mentoring, teaching, and leading.

One of the shortest books in the Bible is Paul's letter to Philemon. Philemon was a convert and wealthy slave owner from the town of Colosse in what is now present day Turkey. Paul writes this letter on behalf of Philemon's slave Onesimus, who had stolen from Philemon and run away. Theft was a crime punishable by death in ancient Rome. Paul met Onesimus while he was imprisoned in Rome, and there Onesimus accepted Christ. He was now ready to take responsibility for his actions and return to Colosse to face his master. In this letter, Paul was pleading to Philemon to have mercy on Onesimus.

This plead from Paul for Onesimus is strikingly parallel to the pleas that Jesus made to the Father, even while he was on the cross, for all of us as sinners. The examples of Paul and Jesus as leaders should be the example that we set for non-believers as we strive to be role models and mentors.

Try this on for size: Have you ever prayed for God's mercy on non-believers, instead of yourself? Have you ever tried to be like Simon and bear someone's cross for them? The hardest thing to do sometimes is look at the hardships and mistakes of a friend or family member (mainly someone who does not have a relationship with Christ) and not judge them, but be there for them, be there with them. Let me know your thoughts. This post was a little tough for me.

Praying for Compassion,
Jesus Freak Out!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Egyptian MindFreaks

If you have ever watched Criss Angel's MindFreak on A&E, then you have seen some amazing illusions. But that is exactly what they are: illusions. They are not real and Criss Angel does not have any mystic powers, like the ability to levitate or whatever. But as convincing as they can be, so can a great deal of Christian and non-Christian teachings in today's society. Teachings and "ritual belief" can pit believer against believer or non-believer against believer. We must be cautious, yet open-minded.

In the book of Exodus, Moses was commanded by God to lead his people out of Egypt to the Promised Land of Israel. But, God did not make it easy. After the plague of the blood, "the Egyptian magicians did the same things by their secret arts, and Pharoah's heart became hard;" (Ch 7:22, NIV). There are so many "magicians" out there today, sometimes it can be hard for new and non-believers to decypher what is the Truth and what is an illusion of God's teachings. Paul also warned Titus to be on the lookout for false teachings/teachers and to help squelch them on Crete. Liberation theology is a prime example. I am not going to go into this here (please come to your own conclusions), but I believe it is devastating to the Truth that Jesus taught while He was here on earth. With information technology like it is today, we must be ready and willing to research and defend the Truth against the "illusions" that are present.

Try this on for size: Take a few minutes in your day to surf the internet and research another religion or point of view. Education and the Holy Spirit are the only tools we have to shine our light on the Truth of Jesus Christ. The more we know about the illusions of religion versus faith, the more we can fight for those who do not know Jesus Christ as we do. I am not saying that we have to be lemmings in our faith. Blind faith can be more dangerous than no faith at all. Educate yourself so that you can be more effective in the trenches, but be wary that Satan does not sway you from the Truth. I have a copy of the Quran and the Book of Mormon in my library at home! (Of course, I still need to dig into them more).

Learning more about the Truth everyday,
Jesus Freak Out!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

You Cretan!

Ever been called a Cretan before? I have, and it wasn't just by my own mother. If you have ever watched the movie The Cutting Edge (I know what you are thinking), then you probably heard D.B. Sweeney's character referred to as a Cretan when he dropped Moira Kelly's character on her can. If we look back through history and the ministry of Paul in the New Testament, then we will find the definition of a Cretan.

Paul wrote a letter to Titus, who was on the island of Crete to assemble Christian converts into the church there. Cretans were well known for being a people who were lazy, gluttoness, dishonest, and pretty much self-absorbed in their own pleasures. Paul writes in 3:3 (NIV), "At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived, and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures." Think back to the time before you knew Christ. When I do, I see someone who "believed" in God but never really knew what it meant to walk with Christ, and I was still wrapped up in seeking my own pleasures instead of those of Christ.

I have talked with a few people about just coming to check out CATB, and more than one have told me that the church will catch on fire if they step foot in there. I have had a hard time finding a way to tell them that they have done nothing worse than I have. But we must perservere and keep plugging away at explaining that Christ does not care for what they have done if they just ask forgiveness for their sins and accept to follow Him from then on. What is the simplest way to explain this simple concept in simple ways that they can simply understand? Post your thoughts and experiences here please. I know I can use the advice.

Try this on for size: In the Parable of the Parable post, I threw out using anecdotes from our own walks with Christ when we talk with people about how He has affected our lives and grown us. When it comes to those tough nuts to crack, throw out examples from your life before you knew Christ. Let them know that you are no different from them. Most non-believers have a stigma that Christians are these perfect people walking around with the perfect answers to life. Negative. Nothing could be further from the truth. Let them know what you struggle(d) with before you accepted Christ and after. Heck, tell them about King David the murderer and adulterer!

Failing miserably at perfection,
Jesus Freak Out!

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

The Guarantee of Death and Taxes

Many of us have heard the expression, "There are no guarantees in life except for death and taxes." But we all know that with faith in, and a relationship with, Jesus Christ, we can be guaranteed eternal life with Him in heaven. If you look in Psalm 6 verse 5 (NIV, one of my favorite Psalms in the whole psalter), the writer, or should I say composer, writes about how no one will remember God or praise Him when he is dead. But we must remember that this was before the new covenant that came with the birth, crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus. Also, there was not a clear idea by the Jews of the Old Testament of what happened after you died. They just knew that life ended.

Well, with Jesus Christ, we now know what happens after we die. We have 2 destinations: Heaven or Hell. We as troops for Jesus Christ must see that our goal is to prevent everyone we can from entering the latter location after death. Though the psalmist says that no one remembers God when he is dead, I'm sure that if we go to heaven, we will remember God and see Him in all his glory. But, for those going to Hell, they will probably remember God, and I am sure that their souls will remember MORE what was said to them on earth. They will be asking themselves why they didn't listen.

Try this on for size: Is God going to be judging just those who didn't believe and have faith in Him? Or will he also be judging those who did not have the courage to step up and let non-believers know all about Him? Ultimately, it is the heart of the person that God will be judging and those who choose not to believe will be held accountable. But we as Christ followers must re-double our efforts to share the Good News with everyone. I am not going to be a hippocrate and say that I am any good at this because I am not. But I must make the most of the time that I have on this earth to plant the seed for non-believers. Start with those you know around you as we are doing, but this must not include just those we meet at church and work. Think about your families (both immediate and extended) and make an effort to begin this same relationship-building effort with one of them.

Out on a limb and hoping it doesn't break,
Jesus Freak Out!

Walking Instead of Living

In Genesis chapter 5, Moses goes through the family tree of man starting with Adam and ending at Noah. But in that chapter there is something a little different when he begins talking about Enoch. He talks about him in a different way than the other men in the lineage. In the NIV text, the word "lived" used in association with Enoch's kin is replaced by the word "walked" when referring to Enoch. Enoch did not just "live" on earth, he "walked" with God.

Who remembers the poem Footprints? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller? The writer talks about seeing 2 sets of footprints at some points in his life's journey and then talks of only seeing one set at other times. How does Jesus respond in their conversation? He says (and I am paraphrasing), that when you saw one, I was carrying you. So what does this tell us about our "walk" with God?

When we believe in God wholeheartedly, and truly have faith that he will help us weather the storm, then we are walking right beside God, lock step. But the times that we start to doubt and we shake our fist at Him and scream why me, those are the times He is carrying us. Why does he carry us? Because he knows that we cannot do it on our own. Remember this next time life deals us a bad hand (like Neal on card night), God will always be there but we must trust in Him in order to walk with Him.

Try this on for size: If you are going through something tough right now, be it a marital issue, a child issue, a family member is sick, or the economy is getting you down, whatever it is, put your best smile on your face and think, "This is just life, but it's not eternal life." Walking with God is the only path to eternal life with Him instead of the place we are trying to kick dents into.

Looking forward to my death,
Jesus Freak Out!

Monday, August 18, 2008

The Parable of the Parable

Day 2:
First off, if there is anyone that you would like included in this e-mail on a daily basis, please send me their address and I will add them. Neal, I need all the guy's e-mail addresses if you can give them. Second, I will be working on setting up a blog so that I won't clog your inboxes (Thanks BH). So here we go again.

Throughout the four Gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John all chronicled how Jesus used to talk with the common person. Hal mentioned it this morning or in a previous message how Jesus used parables so that the common person could understand the deep messages He was trying to relay. By no means am I thinking that I am Jesus Christ by the title of this e-mail. I am probably the farthest from Him but working everyday to get closer to being Him (our goal as Christians). But I have another word besides a parable that we can use to reach out to the "common person" (a.k.a. those who do not know Jesus and those who are just turning their lives over to Him): Anecdote. Call it testimony, witness, story, or whatever, but it is what we know or have experienced in our own lives walking with Jesus Christ that can be more profound than quoting Bible passages (although they are important to know and I stink at it). Those who do not know Christ as intimately as us, yet know who we are, could find more value in our own personal experiences with Jesus Christ.

Try this on for size: Share an anecdote with someone you know to help show how Christ has impacted your life and you just might plant a seed that God will grow. Let the Spirit lead you. I can tell you that from this message series, I could tell stories about how God has blessed the McBride family since we started giving our first fruits to Him. Trust me when I say that it is simply amazing what He can do when you test Him on this; He is the only One who will not fail you.

Looking at God from the floor and asking for a helping hand (and praying for you all),
Jesus Freak Out!

Did you know Christ is a Body Builder?

Here was the first Thought:

I thought I might just start something here. This will begin the Jesus Freak Thought of the Day and will serve a couple of purposes:
1) Get me digging deeper into the Bible each day using all of you to help keep accountable
2) Give each of us a little food for thought as we jump into the "trenches" at CATB and start walking with God more and more
3) I like the word Jesus Freak because that is what each of us is/are/am (I think I lived in Alabama too long)
4) Get us talking about God and Jesus in a way that we might never have thought about
5) And lastly, just to keep us talking with one another on a daily basis as we journey through life like the disciples did with Jesus during his ministry, planting the seed of Truth

So here we go with installment #1:
Philippians 4:13 (ESV) says: "I can do all things through him who gives me strength." (My friend Ed's favorite passage)
First thing that I always ask myself when I think of this passage is, Am I really using God for my strength or am I going on my own strength? I cannot honestly say that I am always relying on God for my strength. Too many times do we as men think that we can move mountains and what we are really moving are grains of sand? By getting in the trenches here at CATB, we are using God's strength to break out of our comfort zones. I know that I have to look to God each and everytime I talk with someone new at church or else I would never break out of my shell. But I still need to break out even more, even when I am not at church. Try this on for size: Next time you go to a store, determine yourself to just say something simple to that cashier about Jesus. You will see how hard it can be to take your strength from God. Our pride will prevail if we are not careful.

You guys are awesome. Have a great evening and please pray for those who do not yet know Christ in our community. Tomorrow will be great as CATB moves forward in its work to bring people into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ.

Please let me know your thoughts on this and if you want me to continue.

Jesus Freak Out!

The Blog is Here: No More Clogged e-mail!

Ladies and Gentlemen, here it is. For those who are just joining us here at the Thought of the Day, I started this blog for some guys in the church I attend here in Tampa FL. It's called Church at the Bay and we are on a "mission from God" (to quote the Blues Brothers) to go out in our community here in the Tampa Bay area and spread the awesome news that our God is alive and that He sent his son to die for our sins. Only through His grace can we live eternally with Him and only if we truly believe in His son's death and resurrection can we be saved. That belief starts a relationship that will change your life forever. And that is what we are doing as troops in the trenches at CATB: helping people begin and grow a relationship with our savior Jesus Christ.

I was driving home from work the other day (I have 30-45 minutes to do plenty of thinking) and I came up with this idea to provide encouragement for these guys, and hopefully everyone who reads this blog, to reach out from where they are and touch the lives of those we know and those we come in contact with. The blog was not my idea. Mine was a plan to clog every e-mail server out there with this, but BH, yes, the man, the myth, the legend himself, came running up to me at church this weekend and said "Dude, you need to lay off the e-mail. Your clogging my inbox with these crazy thoughts of yours and now everyone is responding and my crackberry is about to catch on fire!" Okay, so he didn't say that but he gave me the idea to blog and this is the first installment of hopefully many daily thoughts to come.

This blog is inspired by my Lord and Savior and I must give Him all the credit for any of the ideas that are put up here. I know that I can't just come up with this stuff on my own. These are not visions, or premonitions, or psychic readings or anything: they are just thoughts inspired by God. So please, sit back, relax, and hopefully one of these "thoughts" will inspire you, make you think, push your fatih, and most of all, lead you deeper into relationship with Jesus Christ. If you don't know Christ already, hopefully this will help bring you closer to your decision to join in what I think and know is the most gratifying and blessed relationship you will ever have on this earth and forever. And it's all based on faith.

One last request, please provide me all the feedback that you can. I will not get this perfect and if you agree or disagree with how I am presenting the Word, by all means, tell me so I can learn as well.