Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Dad's Last Sunday......or his first?

This was a picture I took from the congregation of Centerburg United Methodist Church, in Centerburg, Ohio. My dad has been the pastor here for seven years or so, and has been a Methodist pastor for over 26 years. He has decided to "Hang up the Robe" so to speak.

After many days of prayerful wrestling with a decision approaching, he has decided to take a leave of absence. He states that he is concerned with how the upper hierarchy of the Methodist Church is operating and the direction they are heading. I was joined by several friends and family celebrating my father's last Sunday behind the pulpit. Sunday, May 24, was a day to remember.

I was doing play by play via Twitter.

"Today is my dad's last day preaching in a Methodist pulpit, pray that God will be glorified. Way to go Dad! U had a gr8 run!"

"Sittin thru my dad's last sunday, & I am amzd @ how God has moved thru my dad n his 26 yrs of mnstry. wht a srvnt of the Most High God!

Many people have requested audio as well as his sermon transcript, here are some of the quotes:

"By not saying yes 2 God 2day u cud b saying no 2 God 4 all eternity! 2morrow is never guaranteed!",

"If ur ministry is going to count, its going to cost! The ministry that counts the most, costs the most! Endure the suffering!",

My dad says, "People n church are more concerned abt the sermon length then the sermon depth." Ouch!

One of my favorite things Dad said on Sunday that shocked me was: He quoted a person from the Centerburg congregation saying, "Sorry Gary, we really put you through hell." And he agreed, "You did!" You could have heard a pin drop it was so quiet. The sad thing was he had 26 years of going through hell. You just wouldn't think suffering for Christ would come from inside the church walls.

My dad's call to ministry, and "Ministry Verse" came from 2 Timothy 4:1-5. It also was the passage of his final sermon. It says, "I solemnly urge you in the presence of God and Christ Jesus, who will someday judge the living and the dead when he appears to set up his Kingdom: 2 Preach the word of God. Be prepared, whether the time is favorable or not. Patiently correct, rebuke, and encourage your people with good teaching.

3 For a time is coming when people will no longer listen to sound and wholesome teaching. They will follow their own desires and will look for teachers who will tell them whatever their itching ears want to hear. 4 They will reject the truth and chase after myths.

5 But you should keep a clear mind in every situation. Don’t be afraid of suffering for the Lord. Work at telling others the Good News, and fully carry out the ministry God has given you.

It was a great message, a great day, and a great God was glorified. I think my dad summed up an emotional day just beautifully on his Facebook page later Sunday night. He said and I quote,

"Giving thanks to God this evening for family and friends who helped to make this day so much easier for may have been my last day to share God's Word in a United Methodist Church...but I'll be dog-gone if it's the last time I share God's Word!"

Praise be to God!

Dad, I have never been more proud of you than I am right now. The steps you have taken, and the way you have taken them, has been honorable and encouraging for a son of yours to observe. I know you are true to your word when you said, "I'll be dog-gone if it's the last time I share God's Word!" God bless you dad, and every step you take for Him this day forth! Love ya!

Worship Wednesday's

Welcome back to Worship Wednesday. Here is another outstanding worship song from Christ for the Nations, out of Dallas, TX. I stumbled across this school, ministry, etc... a while back, but I am continually astounded by the passionate songs/artists that have come out of there. And I have only started to discover them. Check them out when you get a chance, you won't be disappointed.

Today's song is "Running."

I hear the voice, the voice of the one I love,/He's calling my name./I hear the voice, the voice of the one I love,/He's calling my name./He's saying, come up higher, you'll hear the angels sing./Come up higher my beloved,/Come up higher and leave this world behind./You'll find me to be beautiful/(CHORUS)/I am running,running after You/You become my souls delight/I am running, running after You,/Here with You I find my life/One thing have I desired, this will I seek after
To dwell in Your house forevermore/Now I'm running after, the thing that really matters/You've become my joy and song./

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Worship Wednesday's....are turning into whoops (i forgot) wednesday's

God of This City
This is a great song, Chris Tomlin is not the original artist, that I know of, but he does a good job. This is a plea to God that He is not done moving supernaturally wherever we live. Through Him all things are possible (Phil. 4:13). Our (Acts 1:8) mission starts in our homes, and moves out to our streets and neighborhood, then moves across the city, and then eventually across the world. Lord, we plea that greater things are yet to be done on that street, in my village, in your town, in their city, and in our nation!

It all starts with hungry men and women of God asking, "Lord what do you want me to do RIGHT NOW, at this very moment for you?" Wake up every morning with your arms open wide to God saying, "I am yours, use me for your Kingdom today. Use me!" Let's take our schools, towns, cities, and our world back to God.

You're the God of this City/You're the King of these people/You're the Lord of this nation/You are/You're the Light in this darkness/You're the Hope to the hopeless You're the Peace to the restless/You are/There is no one like our God/There is no one like our God/[CHORUS]For greater things have yet to come/And greater things are still to be done in this City/Greater thing have yet to come/And greater things are still to be done in this City/There is no one like our God/There is no one like our God/[Chorus]For greater things have yet to come/And greater things are still to be done in this City/Greater things have yet to come/And greater things are still to be done here/There is no one like our god/There is no one like our God/[Chorus]Greater things have yet to come/And greater things are still to be done in this City/Greater things have yet to come/And greater things are still to be done here

Friday, May 15, 2009

Its not Wednesday, but... (I missed it this week!)

I first heard this song at a Grace Point Church youth purity event in Texas and the words consumed me. It still consumes me every time i hear it. Let God grip you today through worship. Give it all to Him, let Him consume you. All of you. Its not until then that you are really Living. When He consumes all of you is when Life Everlasting begins.
Lyrics are on the video...Just Worship Him!

The thing I love about doing Worship Wednesday's, is that I get to worship to the song I am blogging about for sometimes hours at a time. Now that is Consuming Worship! Get Lost in the vastness of God's Presence!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Happy Mothers Day

Moms are the best. They have given us so much of their time, love, and listening ear. Moms give up careers and sacrifice for the sake of the family many times. So to all the Mothers out there who have given so much of themselves...Happy Mothers Day! Here are a couple funny videos to enjoy on this great day.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Worship Wednesday's

This quickly has become one of my favorite songs. Matthew West definitely strikes a nerve. This song is a very sobering reminder of my life. Early on in my Christian faith (I grew up in the church) I just did what I thought i was supposed to do. I was just going through the motions. But, (I love big but's in the Bible as well in my life) God radically smacked me in the face, about 6 years ago. I was one of those lukewarm Christians...the kind that Christ speaks through John in Revelation 3:16, "So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth."

Are you making God puke? Do you need God to smack you, too? or I guess I can in Jesus name! Wake up, to the Life He offers. Wake up and live a life of gratitude, for all God has done for you (i.e. Salvation, Grace, Mercy, and Redemption).

Matthew West - The Motions - Something To Say

This might hurt/It’s not safe/But I know that I’ve gotta make a change/I don’t care
If I break/At least I’ll be feeling something/‘Cause just ok/Is not enough/Help me fight through the nothingness of life/I don’t wanna go through the motions/I don’t wanna go one more day/Without Your all consuming passion inside of me/I don’t wanna spend my whole life asking/What if I had given everything?/Instead of going through the motions/No regrets/Not this time/I’m gonna let my heart defeat my mind/Let Your love/Make me whole/I think I’m finally feeling something/Take me all the way/Take me all the way/Take me all the way