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Posts Tagged ‘Liberty Lighthouse Church of God’

Uncovering a Gold Mine

In A Christian Life on July 26, 2011 at 6:22 PM

It has been quite a while since last posting on my blog; I have been lost in the land of social media: Facebook, Twitter and Google Plus. While trouncing through the land, I have made many friends and learned a great deal about any number of subjects. For the most part, ministry has been my goal while walking through the land of endless chatter and updates. Though this post is being written for my blog, I am not going to abandon the other forms of writing – at least not yet!

Blessings from God come in a variety of shapes and sizes through a seemingly never ending caravan of resources. Don’t misunderstand me here on this very important point – God is our source; he uses resources to bless us and move his kingdom forward. God never did send his people out to work in this old world without equipping us to complete the task at hand.

Let me tell you about what God did for us at Liberty Lighthouse Church of God several months ago. This is a fascinating story – one that needs to be told so others can see the hand of God working in the lives of his people. Even now, I am amazed how God brought this about. He put people together in such a way that it would be impossible to doubt his guidance in the matter.

My youth group had been meeting upstairs in the old sanctuary for quite a long time. They practiced drama there, conducted Children’s Church and even taught a Sunday School class in that huge room. They even held the first Youth Spiritual Explosion in that old sanctuary, worn out carpet and all! We even had a luau up there. Let me just say, there have been a lot of tears shed and victories won upstairs in the old church building, and we’re not done yet.

Shortly after the luau, I was walking outside the parsonage one morning and looked across the street to see quite a surprise. There was carpet on the ground in front of the old steps. Well, it wasn’t long until I was upstairs looking at one of my youth leaders ripping up that old, raggedy, worn out carpet. “You said we could do what we wanted up here!” That’s exactly right. I began ripping carpet right along with him. Pretty soon we had piles of the old carpet stacked outside.

We called for a work night and on a Tuesday night a sizable group of people, young and not so young, showed up to continue the project. At this time there really wasn’t a clear cut plan regarding the direction we were headed or the project’s goal. We did know all the carpet had to go, though. It took quite a while to get the carpet out of the sanctuary, but it did happen after many hours of work. What was left was another story.

All we knew to do was scrape the floor with shovels and putty knives. The old glue was stuck to the old pine floor and wasn’t coming off very well, but we kept pressing forward. We spent many Tuesday nights scraping and cleaning as much as we knew how. It was a sight to see all those young and older people working together to get the job done.

Here’s where God came to our rescue. Some of our people were with family at a restaurant in town, and they met a man who owns a floor business, Beautifying Floors by DeVere. Oscar came by the church one day and to look at our project. What a wonderful man! Oscar and I hit it off and we began deciding the direction we would take to complete the project. Oscar gave his time, energy, expertise and love to the table in order to help us turn the old sanctuary into something beautiful. The meeting in that restaurant was no chance happening at all.

The word of God declares in Psalm 37:23-24 “The steps of a man are established by the Lord, when he delights in his way; 24 though he fall, he shall not be cast headlong, for the Lord upholds his hand.” I do not believe in happenstance or luck in the lives of Christian people. God orders the steps of those who put their trust in him.

The sanctuary walls were in bad shape, too, and needed quite a bit of repair. Once again, the Lord sent someone by to help in our time of need. One of our new people works at Sea World in maintenance and knows how to do all sorts of things relating to construction and repair. He voluntarily spent a couple days of vacation time to repair the walls. What a blessing! I am also thankful for the volunteers in the church who spent hours preparing the walls for the work that followed.

Under that old carpet was a diamond in the rough. It turned out to be one of the most beautiful floors I’ve ever seen. It took a long time, but was worth all the effort. The walls that were in such bad shape are not that way any more.

God blessed in ways we couldn’t imagine. He orchestrated the whole affair, and we are not done yet. There is still more to be done, but we have no doubt the outcome will be amazing.

Father’s Day – 2009

In A Christian Life, The Pastor's Blog on June 21, 2009 at 11:15 PM

To say there is a fresh excitement in the air at Liberty Lighthouse Church of God, would be akin to describing a Big Mac as a five-course meal. Several of our people came home from the Florida Campmeeting refreshed and with a new perspective on the kingdom of God. The Lord really did move on us as we worshipped with thousands of other people in that great tabernacle.

We have decided to move ahead with a renewed sense of purpose with God’s help and direction. There’s a world of people who don’t know Christ as savior, but need to, and we intend to do our part to reach some of them. It is a certainty we can’t reach everyone, but can affect those around us, those who can be reached by our people.

We had a great service today as we honored the fathers who were with us. There were several visitors today, and our people made them feel right at home – people are looking for someone to care for them. Do you know why many people don’t get involved in church or even show up? Simply because they’re not asked. I know what you’re thinking: I’ve asked until I’m blue in the face. You may have to ask someone else, but keep asking.

There were prizes given away today, and the guys really enjoyed that. More importantly, however, is the fact they were with Christian people and participated in the service with us. They were exposed to God’s word and fellowship. They heard singing and listened to the words of praise. It was a good thing to see them here.

Will they come back? Will they give their hearts to the Lord? I don’t know, but one thing is for sure, and that is the fact one plants, another waters, but God gives the increase. If we Christians will do what we know to do, God will most surely do his part.

We normally have Sunday night services throughout the year with a few exceptions. Christmas, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day and maybe a couple more. So, it’s normal for us to be at the church before the service begins, but not tonight. You never know what’s going to happen when there’s no evening service, so be prepared to be blessed by God and his people at all times.

My wife and I were at the parsonage, hanging out with our family, when she said “there’s a car at the church. Another one just showed up. Hey, that looks like Pastor Gary’s car.” Well, it wasn’t long until I changed clothes and ran over to where the cars were parked. Sure enough, Pastor Greer from the Lisbon Church of God, and some of his people had shown up at our church. I was embarrassed at first because these precious people travelled a good while to be with us, and here we were not having service this night.

Let me just tell you, all is okay. The visit was ordained of God and we had church anyway. We had great fellowship, prayer and a wonderful time in the Lord. There’s just something special when God’s people get together and share the goodness of the Lord; it is like family getting together around a big table and eating what’s been prepared.

We understand the importance of agreeing in prayer according to the scriptures. Jesus said in Matthew 18:19-20 Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. 20 For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.” After the Lisbon flock agreed with my wife and me concerning the needs of our church, Pastor Gary and I each picked up a musical instrument and let them sound in the midst of the people. He chose the ram’s horn and I had the shofar. What an awesome sound was heard as we lifted up the praise of those instruments to the Lord!

I wish you could have been here today and been a part of what the Lord did for all of us. If you live near us, pleas feel free to drop by. There is a link to our church and location on this blog.

My question is:

What will God do next?

Pastor Appreciation Day – May 3, 2009

In A Christian Life, The Pastor's Blog on May 5, 2009 at 9:43 PM

There’s really no way to describe the day we had at Liberty Lighthouse Church of God today as the congregation and friends honored my wife and me. It was our day to relax and enjoy wonderful fellowship and the presence of the Lord along with everyone else. Understand, we always enjoy the presence of the Lord, but this time we were asked to sit back and others would carry the load, which they did quite admirably.
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Our children sang a song for my wife and me; you should have been there to see it. For your viewing pleasure, just click on this Facebook link. Those little ones sang their hearts out and we sure enjoyed hearing them. Our granddaughter is the one on the far right. She’s a tender-hearted little girl who shows her emotions in a powerful way.IMG_0232

A dear friend of ours, Sister Connie Beck, preached a powerful message about the role of a pastor. She spoke both from personal experience as a pastor’s wife and knowing my wife and me since before we were married. Sister Connie has a wonderful anointing on her life and speaks with a strong voice about things she is compassionate about. Our people were not only blessed to hear this woman of God, they were also challenged by what she had to say.

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Our drama team was also included in the service, and they really did an outstanding job. They give everything they have when performing, and our people were moved by the dramas they chose to perform. When they blessed us with the one about God breaking chains off those who have been so bound by the power of the devil, the people were deeply moved. They really outdid themselves.IMG_0236

For those of you who are not familiar with Pastor Appreciation Day, let me explain something to y0u that might give you and idea of why we like them so much. Our church ladies certainly can cook, and that’s a big part of this grand event. After the morning service, we made our way to where the meal and tables had been set up. The people outdid themselves making the room look festive and comfortable. I was really pleased as there were orange and blue table cloths scattered around for all to enjoy. Orange and blue, you ask? Go, Gators!

There were so many people who made this day happen, it would be impossible to thank them all. I don’t have pictures of all of them, either. To those of you who worked so tirelessly to make this a special day for the Liberty Lighthouse Church of God and my wife and me, thank you. You will never know how much this means to us.

The Word of God

In Sermons, The Pastor's Blog on April 20, 2009 at 2:58 PM

Since becoming a Christian on Easter Sunday 1977, I have loved the word of God. Lately, though, there has been a sense of urgency about it like never before. My wife has even noticed a difference in me, and we both realize this new hunger for the word happened around the time we saw the Nightline Face-Off on ABC. Watching Carlton Pearson speak such outlandish ideas really stirred my spirit and caused me to look at the Bible in a new light.

I want to share a message with you preached last week at a church here in central Florida at the Lisbon Church of God and again yesterday at Liberty Lighthouse Church of God. It is my belief we need to read and study God’s word now more than ever; we are living in perilous times, and the word of the Lord is our strength in times of trouble. It is our life and we need to hear from God. Let me encourage you to study this powerful book and receive God’s richest blessings.

The Word of God

Lisbon Church of God

Friday, April 17, 2009 am Service

Hebrews 4:12

For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. (Hebrews 4:12, ESV)

Flexible

Flexible

This book I hold in my hand is not the figment of someone’s imagination, nor is it just a book of good stories. It is not a collection of fairy tales and it is not some old, antiquated, worn-out book that no longer has relevance in today’s world. It is the matchless Word of God, written on the pages of history. It is pure, holy, good, powerful, immutable, never ending, always faithful, always right, always on time. It never loses its luster, it never fades nor does it ever fail to satisfy the thirsty soul.


It has healed me, delivered me, given me hope, brought peace to my soul, testified there is a God who loves me, cleansed me, made me whole. Its pages contain good news, victory, romance and the greatest love story ever told. It cannot fail, it cannot lie, it cannot be washed away by public opinion or government regulations. It cannot be destroyed, it shines as a beacon to all who seek its wisdom. It destroys vain thoughts, it guides lost souls to the Cross of Calvary. It is the immutable Word of the one true living God; it cannot fail.


Some men loathe it while others find comfort and peace in its life-giving pages. Some run and hide from the words it speaks, while others embrace every word between the covers. Some have denied the importance of it, while others esteem it to more important than their portion of food. Look at Job 23:12: “I have not departed from the commandment of his lips; I have treasured the words of his mouth more than my portion of food. (Job 23:12, ESV)


What does the Word teach?

  1. Judges 16 teaches me to flee from the enemy. Look at the story of Samson and Delilah. Samson judged Israel power a special anointing, but Delilah was his downfall. Day by day his soul was vexed by her constant barrage of tormenting accusations. He finally gave in and told her the secret of his incredible power. You know the rest of the story. Church, he should have moved on, but didn’t.
  2. II Corinthians 6:17 tells me to come out from among the world and be separated unto the Lord.
  3. Romans 7:7 lets me know what lust is.
  4. 1 John 2:1 gives me hope. For many people, it is nearly impossible to allow the Lord to minister to their lives. The word of God assures us there is hope. Child of God, quit struggling with guilt, shame and despair. God knows right where you are and will deliver you from sins dark clutches.

What is the primary purpose of God’s word? We need look no further than Dueteronomy 4:9-10 for the answer.

9 “Only take care, and keep your soul diligently, lest you forget the things that your eyes have seen, and lest they depart from your heart all the days of your life. Make them known to your children and your children’s children— 10 how on the day that you stood before the Lord your God at Horeb, the Lord said to me, ‘Gather the people to me, that I may let them hear my words, so that they may learn to fear me all the days that they live on the earth, and that they may teach their children so.’

Look at the two important realities here:

  1. That people may learn to fear the Lord all their days.
  2. That they they may teach the word to their children.

  • Judges 2:10 And all that generation also were gathered to their fathers. And there arose another generation after them who did not know the Lord or the work that he had done for Israel.

  • Joel 1:3 Tell your children of it, and let your children tell their children, and their children to another generation.

  • Romans 10:17 So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.

  • II Timothy 2:15 Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, [1] a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth.

  • II Timothy 3:15-17 15 and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. 16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17 that the man of God [1] may be competent, equipped for every good work.

There are scores of Christians who believe their lives are done for if they sin. I do not advocate sin, but I do lift up the advocate of our souls – Jesus Christ the Righteous. 1 John 2:1


Psalm 119 is perhaps the most complete portion of scripture regarding the word of God. Look at some of the main points:

  • It makes us clean – 119:9 How can a young man keep his way pure? By guarding it according to your word.

  • It is to be rejoiced over – 119:14 In the way of your testimonies I delight as much as in all riches.  NOTE: If we spent half as much time and energy reading the word of God as we care for our wants and desires, we would be better off by far. Too many people care more for their “stuff” than loving God’s eternal word.

  • It gives light – 119:105 Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.

The following information comes from Matthew Henry’s commentary:

Psa 19:7-14

God’s glory, (that is, his goodness to man) appears much in the works of creation, but much more in and by divine revelation. The holy scripture, as it is a rule both of our duty to God and of our expectation from him, is of much greater use and benefit to us than day or night, than the air we breathe in, or the light of the sun. The discoveries made of God by his works might have served if man had retained his integrity; but, to recover him out of his fallen state, another course must be taken; that must be done by the word of God. And here,

I. The psalmist gives an account of the excellent properties and uses of the word of God, in six sentences (Psa_19:7-9), in each of which the name Jehovah is repeated, and no vain repetition, for the law has its authority and all its excellency from the law-maker. Here are six several titles of the word of God, to take in the whole of divine revelation, precepts and promises, and especially the gospel. Here are several good properties of it, which proves its divine original, which recommend it to our affection, and which extol it above all other laws whatsoever. Here are several good effects of the law upon the minds of men, which show what it is designed for, what use we are to make of it, and how wonderful the efficacy of divine grace is, going along with it, and working by it.

  • The law of the Lord is perfect. It is perfectly free from all corruption, perfectly filled with all good, and perfectly fitted for the end for which it is designed; and it will make the man of God perfect, 2Ti_3:17. Nothing is to be added to it nor taken from it. It is of use to convert the soul, to bring us back to ourselves, to our God, to our duty; for it shows us our sinfulness and misery in our departures from God and the indispensable necessity of our return to him.

  • The testimony of the Lord (which witnesses for him to us) is sure, incontestably and inviolably sure, what we may give credit to, may rely upon, and may be confident it will not deceive us. It is a sure discovery of the divine truth, a sure direction in the way of duty. It is a sure foundation of living comforts and a sure foundation of lasting hopes. It is of use to make us wise, wise to salvation, 2Ti_3:15. It will give us an insight into things divine and a foresight of things to come. It will employ us in the best work and secure to us our true interests. It will make even the simple (poor contrivers as they may be for the present world) wise for their souls and eternity. Those that are humbly simple, sensible of their own folly and willing to be taught, shall be made wise by the word of God, Psa_25:9.

  • The statutes of the Lord (enacted by his authority, and binding on all wherever they come) are right, exactly agreeing with the eternal rules and principles of good and evil, that is, with the right reason of man and the right counsels of God. All God’s precepts, concerning all things, are right (Psa_119:128), just as they should be; and they will set us to rights if we receive them and submit to them; and, because they are right, they rejoice the heart. The law, as we see it in the hands of Christ, gives cause for joy; and, when it is written in our hearts, it lays a foundation for everlasting joy, by restoring us to our right mind.

  • The commandment of the Lord is pure; it is clear, without darkness; it is clean, without dross and defilement. It is itself purified from all alloy, and is purifying to those that receive and embrace it. It is the ordinary means which the Spirit uses in enlightening the eyes; it brings us to a sight and sense of our sin and misery, and directs us in the way of duty.

  • The fear of the Lord (true religion and godliness prescribed in the word, reigning in the heart, and practised in the life) is clean, clean itself, and will make us clean (Joh_15:3); it will cleanse our way, Psa_119:9. And it endureth for ever; it is of perpetual obligation and can never be repealed. The ceremonial law is long since done away, but the law concerning the fear of God is ever the same. Time will not alter the nature of moral good and evil.

  • The judgments of the Lord (all his precepts, which are framed in infinite wisdom) are true; they are grounded upon the most sacred and unquestionable truths; they are righteous, all consonant to natural equity; and they are so altogether: there is no unrighteousness in any of them, but they are all of a piece.

II. He expresses the great value he had for the word of God, and the great advantage he had, and hoped to have, from it, Psa_19:10, Psa_19:11.

1. See how highly he prized the commandments of God. It is the character of all good people that they prefer their religion and the word of God, (1.) Far before all the wealth of the world. It is more desirable than gold, than fine gold, than much fine gold. Gold is of the earth, earthly; but grace is the image of the heavenly. Gold is only for the body and the concerns of time; but grace is for the soul and the concerns of eternity. (2.) Far before all pleasures and delights of sense. The word of God, received by faith, is sweet to the soul, sweeter than honey and the honey comb. The pleasures of sense are the delight of brutes, and therefore debase the great soul of man; the pleasures of religion are the delight of angels, and exalt the soul. The pleasures of sense are deceitful, will soon surfeit, and yet never satisfy; but those of religion are substantial and satisfying, and there is no danger of exceeding in them.

2. See what use he made of the precepts of God’s word: By them is thy servant warned. The word of God is a word of warning to the children of men; it warns us of the duty we are to do, the dangers we are to avoid, and the deluge we are to prepare for, Eze_3:17; Eze_33:7. It warns the wicked not to go on in his wicked way, and warns the righteous not to turn from his good way. All that are indeed God’s servants take this warning.

3. See what advantage he promised himself by his obedience to God’s precepts: In keeping them there is great reward. Those who make conscience of their duty will not only be no losers by it, but unspeakable gainers. There is a reward, not only after keeping, but in keeping, God’s commandments, a present great reward of obedience. Religion is health and honour; it is peace and pleasure; it will make our comforts sweet and our crosses easy, life truly valuable and death itself truly desirable.