Pastor Corner
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October 8, 2013, 12:00 AM

Allowing the Spirit of God...

I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. Then you will live in the land I gave your ancestors; you will be my people, and I will be your God."    - Ezekiel 36L26-28

Sometimes we simply need to be reminded of how much better God's plan is than our own.  We need to humble ourselves and realize that God needs to be allowed to work through us.  What we think is important is not important sometimes.  God promised the Israelites restoration, He promised them a new heart, a new spirit.  However, they had to be willing to receive this from the Lord.

So many times, God wants to do a great work through us, but we are stubborn humans and we think we know best.  We need to slow down and listen.  Sometimes, that small voice in your head is the voice of God telling you...visit ________, tell ________ that you love them, invite ________ to church, give of your time to __________.  Sometimes, it is God letting you know that you need to change directions in the way that you are living, but many of us do not listen.  Sometimes, you are bent on preaching a particular sermon, oh wait that's me...and God's got other things in store. 

Listen to that still, small voice.  If it is honoring God in it's advice, then listen and follow its direction.  It's not coincidence, it may be God simply saying...allow Me to work through you today, let Me give you a new spirit.

In Christ,

Bro. Grant

September 30, 2013, 12:00 AM

Repairing one brick at a time...

"The Valley Gate was repaired by Hanun and the residents of Zanoah. They rebuilt it and put its doors with their bolts and bars in place. They also repaired a thousand cubitsof the wall as far as the Dung Gate.The Dung Gate was repaired by Malkijah son of Rekab, ruler of the district of Beth Hakkerem. He rebuilt it and put its doors with their bolts and bars in place. The Fountain Gate was repaired by Shallun son of Kol-Hozeh, ruler of the district of Mizpah. He rebuilt it, roofing it over and putting its doors and bolts and bars in place. He also repaired the wall of the Pool of Siloam,by the King’s Garden, as far as the steps going down from the City of David." - Nehemiah 3:13-14

In the book of Nehemiah, we are told of how God's people came together to rebuilt a city that had once been destroyed.  We are told of how each clan, each family did their part to ensure the future of this great city.  I know it seems odd to choose this Scripture out of all the details that describe the rebuilding of the city, but stay with me for just a second.  Between the Valley gate and the Fountain gate was the Dung gate.  One has to admit that the Dung gate does not have a very pleasant name.  How would you like to be responsible for or have the legacy of having repaired the Dung gate? Truth be told, this was actually an important gate.  It was a gate where remains from the temple/city would be taken out to be burned.  What would the city do without a way to get rid of such materials.  What would our cities do without its waste management systems? Not a pleasant thought, is it? 

Every part that is done to repair a city is important...every part.  This also goes for the church.  Last night after church services, we discovered that we have an issue with one of our air conditioning units.  We have some repairs that need to be done...not glamorous work.  It's behind the scenes, but has to be done.  Repairing a church building is done one brick at a time, just like the "great city" in brick at a time.  It takes time and effort.  All of the work is not glamorous ("Valley Gate" or "Fountain Gate") some of the work has to be done simply so we can function ("Dung gate").  However, in the end, God will bless the hands that rebuild His city and work for the good of His kingdom.

In Christ,

Bro. Grant

September 23, 2013, 12:00 AM

God's got it...

As I was getting ready this morning and listening to the news, I once again heard of tragic events.  This time it was innocent patrons at a mall in Nairobi, Kenya being held hostage.  I believe the number of deaths were at 69 when I left the house.  Such violence often begs the questions from many...where is God or why doesn't God do something?

There is no doubt that events like this are tragic and obviously no country is free from such events, we had 12 loose their lives just last week at the Naval yard.  But don't even think that God doesn't know what is going on or that God is not doing something. Psalm 11:4-6 states "The Lord is in his holy temple; the Lord is on his heavenly throne. he observes everyone on earth: his eyes examine them.  The Lord examines the righteous, but the wicked, those who love violence, he hates with a passion.  On the wicked he wil rain fiery coals and burning sulfur; a scorching wind will be their lot."

God sees, and knows, all that is transpiring on this earth.  We must trust that He's got this.  Do all we can to make our way of life safe for our children and our families, but in the end...God's got this.  Furthermore, if God is able to use situations like those mentioned above, just imagine how he can use our day to day ups and downs...God's got those situations too!! Trust that He will work in all things for the good of those who love him.

In Christ,

Bro. Grant

September 16, 2013, 12:00 AM

Service to the church...

"This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of God's people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God. Because of the service by which you have proved yourselves, men will praise God for the obedience that accompanies your confession of the gospel of Christ, and for your generosity in sharing with them and with everyone else. And in their prayers for you their hearts will go out to you, because of the surpassing grace God has given you. Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!"  2 Cor. 9:12-15

Today, I am again proud of the leadership at FBC Hooks.  We had 59 names on the list for volunteer training yesterday.  I had made 60 folders thinking we would have plenty left over for next time and worried about wasting church money on copies.  Guess God knew better.  Thank you for coming out, not knowing all the details, but trusting that we were doing something important.  God had clearly gone before us, prepared hearts and made the path much easier than what I was expecting.  Thank you God and thank you FBC.  

The Scripture given above relates to the giving of financial gifts from the church in Corinth when discussed in context.  However, I would like to extend that application to the fact that "the service", meaning in whatever way you are serving God's church, will praise God and the result will be that "men will praise God."  Through your faithful service and preparation, like yesterday, folks will come to know Christ.  That is exciting.  Your service is an incredible gift from God and I am thankful that you have chosen to use that gift to further His kingdom.

God's blessings,

Bro. Grant

September 9, 2013, 12:00 AM

Demonstration of God's love...

 David was informed by Nathan of the blessings that would soon come to him.  He was overwhelmed and the reaction of David was one of humility and awe.  1 Chronicles 17: 16-17 states that he sat down before the Lord and said..."Who am I, O LORD God, and what is my family, that you have brought me this far? And as if this were not enough in your sight, O God, you have spoken about the future of the house of your servant. You have looked on me as though I were the most exalted of men, O LORD God."

I have felt like David since arriving in Hooks, TX, but especially yesterday.  Our family was warmly welcomed by church and Hooks family.  The demonstration of God's love from folks in the community was incredible.  To see participation from pastors/ministers from other churches demonstrates God's hand at work in this community.  Relationships are being made that can be the basis of great things if we will simply allow God to do His thing.  As a current song by TobyMac says...go ahead and steal my show. God, get after it...we are ready to see what you have in store!!!

Thank you Hooks...Thank you Church!

In Christ,

Bro. Grant


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