Something Great Is Beginning To Happen

IMG_0224.PNGI was taught by my father in law many years ago about the power of faith. He told me once that if a person truly believed that anything is possible. As I think about that talk that we had sitting in his living room on a Friday night, I realize that is true.  Charlie was a man of deep conviction and faith and he always acted out on that faith.

As I look ahead at the future of our church, I truly believe that something great is beginning to happen. When I say that, I want you to realize that I am not trying to say that we as a church can sit back and wait to see what happens. Instead, I am saying that we must act out on that faith by stepping out. This is exactly what we will be doing in the weeks and months ahead. I am not expecting immediate results for I believe that what we do will take months or years before we see the effects. However, I do think you will see the results in the lives of our people as they step out in faith. The results I believe that you will see will be joy, unity, and happiness. The reason is because we as a body of believers are choosing to be obedient to our Lord by “going” and “reaching” others for His Kingdom. This in itself fills the believers with joy, unity and happiness.

I would like to encourage those who read this to pray for us as we go forward for the Lord.  Also, if you are not involved in a church, then come along with us. Maybe there might be some that are members of our congregation but have not attended in a while. Come on back and be apart of something great. God is good!!!!

All For The Kingdom Of Christ,

Bro. Henry Shelton

Matthew 28:19-20

 

Can’t Wait Till They Come

IMG_0227“And the master said to the servant, ‘Go out to the highways and hedges and compel people to come in, that my house may be filled.” Luke 14:23 ESV

There are many of churches who are struggling when it comes to attendance. For some reason or another it seems that people will not come. Why is that? I believe the reason is based on myths that we as a church have chosen to believe. Allow me to list a few of those myths here: 1. If we build it they will come, 2. If we have sound preaching, then they will come 3. If we change the music they will come 4. If we have fantastic programs they will come and 5. If we have younger leadership with a family then they will come.

While these myths sound factual, they are not for if we are putting our hope in this for people to come then it will not work. Don’t get me wrong, I do believe that sound preaching is important and I believe it is important for churches to be open to some of the newer music. However, that alone will not cause people to come our church. A church can have the best preacher and the best music but still be empty.  So the question arises, what can we do?

I believe what we all as churches must realize is that we can’t wait for people to come to us, we must go to them. Jesus never meant for us to wait till people darken our doors, instead He always wanted us to go where the people are. Jesus illustrated this in the scripture mentioned above for this is exactly what He did. Jesus was always among the people, so should the church be also.

The more we outreach to people in our community, the more we will see the effect in our church over time. It will not be overnight, in fact it will take a long time. It might even take years. However, that does not really matter for if we are doing what we should be doing then in God’s time He will grow His church.  So what we as a church must choose to do is to be faithful to our Lord by reaching out to others just as He wants us to do.

I Miss Mr. Henry

keep it simpleToday I wished a young lady who I taught in children’s church over 10 years a Happy Birthday. She responded with…Thank you Mr. Henry.  I have not heard Mr. Henry in a very long time because now most people either call me Bro. Henry , some Pastor Henry, even few Rev. Henry and some just Henry. To be honest, I have missed being called Mr. Henry.

The reason that Mr. Henry is so special to me, it reminds me when God gave me the opportunity to teach the kids not only about His Word but what church was all about. Those group of kids that would come faithfully saw something in me that I could not see in myself at that time–my calling as a minister. Now I am sure they did not understand all of that but they knew that I was their leader, “Mr. Henry”.

Teaching those wonderful kids was a beginning in me for it stirred the calling of God in me that He would use later in my life. None of those kids will probably really know how influential they all were in helping me become what I am today. I am so thankful to God for each one.

Yes I do miss Mr. Henry but I am thankful for those years that I was Him

Be encouraged today!!!!

Taking The Lord’s Name In Vain

what-it-really-means

“You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain….” Deuteronomy 5:11 NASB

When many of us look at the verse above we think that it is referring to cussing with God’s name on it. I can’t tell you how many times I have heard someone say to a person who did that by saying, “Oh God is going to get you for taking His name in vain.”  But is that what this commandment talking about? Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think we should ever use God’s name in that form but to say that this commandment is referring to just that is not correct.

The meaning of this commandment actually means “to attach God’s name to emptiness.” So just take a minute and think about this for a second. Many times I have heard people say that they have sat through worship, preaching and even Bible study and got nothing from it but yet they say they came in the name of the Lord. Could it be that we just took God’s name in vain because our worship, or our presence in church or in Bible study is empty.

I believe there are many ways in which we all break this commandment. When we come to worship God whether it is at church or at home we should be coming with the attitude of wanting to sit at His feet to learn something.  The reason I believe that our worship seems empty has nothing to do with the preacher, the music or even the Bible we use instead it has to do with our heart.

The next time you get alone with God, I encourage you to ask Him to help you to put your focus on Him so that you will worship Him the way He deserves to be worshipped

Have a good day!!!

Waiting on the Sunshine

sunshineOver the last several weeks we have been having severe storms all around almost all week long. This morning as I was driving to work I notice something different. Instead of seeing dark clouds I saw sunshine, instead of hearing thunder and seeing lighting I heard the birds singing. As I allowed this to soak in, I realized that the storms that we face in our lives will not be forever. I know at times it seems like we will never get through the storm but in time the storms will pass and the sun will shine again.   The question is what can we do till the sun shines again. I believe the following is a very helpful guide.

1. Get alone with God and pour our hearts out to Him through prayer.  Be honest with God, tell Him how you feel and what you are going through.  God has the biggest shoulders ever and there is no problem that He cannot handle

2. Get into the Word Of God.  The greatest help for all is the Bible. When you feel as though you cannot go on, God’s Word will give you strength and help. As the Holy Spirit leads highlight and underline verses that encourage you. This will be great help later when you go through other storms that you will face.

3. Examine Your Heart. Although we may not realize it the storms that we face in life can actually be for our good. Instead of allowing it to overcome you, use it as an examining tool. Such as—What can I learn from this? Are their things that we need to change? Do we rely to much on self and not enough on God?

And finally–

4. Continually draw near to God.  James 4:8 says, “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” Now I do want you to understand that if you do this, God may reveal sins that you need to confess for that same passage in James also says, “Cleanse your hands, sinners, and purify your hearts, double-minded people!”

Yes the storms are rough and hard to deal with but we have a wonderful God who is there willing to help and guide us, only if we will let Him.   Be encouraged today!!!!

One of my favorite hymns

I believe that this should be the cry of every believer to the Holy Spirit of God

Holy Spirit, breathe on me,

Until my heart is clean;

Let sunshine fill its inmost part,

With not a cloud between.

Holy Spirit, breathe on me,

My stubborn will subdue;

Teach me in words of living flame

What Christ would have me do.

Holy Spirit, breathe on me,

Fill me with pow’r divine;

Kindle a flame of love and zeal

Within this heart of mine.

Holy Spirit, breathe on me,

Till I am all Thine own,

Until my will is lost in Thine,

To live for Thee alone.

Breathe on me, breathe on me,

Holy Spirit, breathe on me;

Take Thou my heart, cleanse every part,

Holy Spirit, breathe on me.

Where do I go from here?

“Where do I go from here?”  This is a question that we all will face at times in our life, especially when we feel as though we have hit a dead end.  We look to our left than we look to our right but we see no direction to go.  We begin to look behind us and realize that we really can’t go back so again so what must we do.

The best way for us to answer that question is go to the Word of God which says in  Psalm 105:4, “Search for the Lord and for His strength; seek His face always.”  So from God’s Word we learn that the first step in our dilemma is to “look up”  Notice what we find when we look up “His strength”.  Now there is something that we must do in order to gain that strength when we look up 1 Peter 5:7 says, “casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you.” To cast means to throw it upon Him.  This means we should give Him our worry, our fear, our burdens all of it.  The reason is because God cares for us.  Yes you might still feel as though you still are at a dead end but you can rest assure that God will help lead you to the right path and to the right road just because you looked up and cast everything on Him.

Be encouraged today!!!!