Last week my wife Karen had Spring Break at the the school she teaches at. So I did something very rare for me I chose to take four days off to stay at home with her and work on the house we moved into back in early winter. It was non stop work from early morning till just before sundown but we were able to accomplish a great deal. I enjoy being with Karen especially as we work together because she is one of the hardest workers I know. When you work with her you will work efficiently, intensely and I love it. At the end of the four days of work we felt very productive and I think even more healthy physically and mentally because of all the exercise. WORK is GOOD & WORKING TOGETHER is WHOLESOME!
In order to free my time up to work at the house and to give my mind a rest from my regular routine I asked Pastor Rt Stringer and Pastor Chas Singer to preach on Sunday. My normal study and prep time for Sundays messages involve 16-20 hours a week. This would allow my mind to rest and provide other pastors to share their hearts with the congregation. I know I enjoyed hearing Pastor Rt & Chas peach from Matthew 13 & 14 and am sure that our congregation at Liberty Baptist did as well.
It was really good for me to sit and listen and to worship in a fashion not usually afforded me. As the preacher you are worshiping but always with the fact that you soon will be standing in front of people with the great responsibility of teaching Gods Word! That has a way of adding great heaviness and a sense of responsibility. This past Sunday as I sat and listened I prayed much for these Pastors who had spent hours in preparation that they would be endued with the power of the Holy Ghost to deliver and proclaim this Divine Truth! I also prayed for my own spiritual ears to listen and to obey what I heard. I attempted with a genuine heart to not miss a thought, a word a impression that the Lord had planned for me to receive. You should see my notes as I had the privilege to ponder and express what God was saying even as I expressed that through my finger tips as I wrote out such glorious truths to follow. Since that time I have returned to my notes and meditated on these truths with a desire to practically let them become the fiber of my soul as I live out their profound principle.
Yes, this past Sunday's services at our church had a great impact upon this pastor. It was NOT some New Revelation, NOT some Big Excitement, NOT some Current Cutting Edge Program, NOT some Earth Shattering Experience. No, I was reminded of the call of the Pastor, of the Church and that which we are to do week after week until Jesus comes again. We are to teach God's Word ex-positionally. It is God's Word that has the power to bring lost people to salvation. It is the Word of God that will rebirth the spiritual dead and it is that same Word that will change the lives of those born again. There is no problem with the SEED. Faithful proclamation of the Scripture in the pulpit & classroom, a godly congregation that faithfully worships together and pursues sanctification under leadership- that is what God calls His church to do and be. That is what is normal, that is what works and only that. That is what is needed to see people of all ages becoming true Christ like followers of Jesus. THAT IS ENOUGH.
This past weekend my eyes were once again enlightened to the will and ways of God for our the here at Liberty. We must be aware of of the pressure by the world and some in the church who are either immature believers or insincere non- believers who exert pressure knowingly or unknowingly ( simply because that is all they know and are functioning in the flesh not the Spirit) to have the church change its function and purpose to other pursuits besides Biblical purposes of the church. May THE CHURCH CHANGE THE WORLD AND NOT THE WORLD CHANGE THE CHURCH. I have been reminded to preach and teach God's Word and am certain that the TRUE Church and the Dedicated Church will be in assemblies and study's to avail themselves to learn and obey what they have learned. But to lighten up & lessen up on teaching the WORDS OF GOD is not what will work in the producing of Christlike, dedicated and powerful Christians who make a difference in the world. NO, the opposite happens when we move toward such temptation, the result is a WORLDLY & WEAK CHURCH filled with carnal believers and tares filled with poison desiring to pollute and eventually kill truth in the church.
It is more clear to me that we must avoid and attack the assault upon the hearts of our youth, the hearts of our homes and the heart of our churches. We must stick with and return to LEARNING GOD'S WORD and LIVING IT OUT! So for me and the Church God has posted me at as the overseer I rededicate myself for such. No matter the complaints of the length of Biblical messages, no matter the thoughts of some that we need less times of teaching and preaching of God's Word. No matter the lack of interest and participation of people for assembly and study time. I choose to do the essential thing, Teach people God's Word, expound upon what it means and encourage them to live it and teach it to others. ONE HEART AT A TIME, ONE VERSE AT A TIME, ONE DAY AT A TIME, ONE WEEK AT A TIME, UNTIL DEATH OR RAPTURE!
One last thought! I am so thankful for a congregation that loves God's Word, that study and teach it consistently to their families and to hundreds of others. I am thankful for a staff that study and defend TRUTH. It has made the eternal difference in hundreds and hundreds through the years. It has made an eternal impact in our county and community. Our children are now adults living their lives and leading their children on It's foundations. May it continue to be a reality here at Liberty Baptist Church!
Terry has been the Senior Pastor of Liberty for 28 years. He and his wife, Karen, have 4 children, 10 grandchildren, and 1 spoiled dog named Cooper.