10 Years Ago Today…

Ten years ago today, on October 7, 2007, Terri and I stepped out in faith and rededicated our lives to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. We made our renewed profession of faith in a public baptism at a small, local church we had started attending several weeks before. A couple of months earlier we had taken a horseback ride up a mountainside near Taos, New Mexico. Neither of us are exactly sure what happened up on that mountain, but a spiritual transformation took root. Perhaps our spirits were overwhelmed by soaking in the majestic grandeur of God’s creation. Our souls were certainly hungry for God, even though we didn’t know it at the time we’d planned our trip. Yet, while we were yet sinners, God was faithful in His pursuit of us.

The decade since we set out on our faith journey has been a rollercoaster ride of high highs and low lows. There have been incredible, inexplicable highs–like Terri and I getting married, my being ordained as a minister, and the joy of performing several weddings. But to be sure, it hasn’t been all wine and roses. No, there have been dark moments like getting the left foot of fellowship, burying a good friend’s wife and 13-year-old daughter and our 24-year old niece in the course of a few months, and having to say goodbye too soon to another great friend and co-laborer in Christ earlier this year. Yes, there have been difficult valleys to traverse and hard mountains to climb. But through it all, God has remained faithful in seeing us through the difficult times. His comfort has been immeasurable; His love beyond amazing.

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16 (ESV)

Terri and I have both marveled at how God has used us to share the Gospel all throughout the DFW metroplex as well as in different parts of the World. Through our involvement with the ministries of Operation Christmas Child, Terri had the joy of sharing the love of Jesus in Tanzania and through our home church she also had the opportunity to minister to the people of Barranquilla, Colombia.  We even had the opportunity to take a Bible study tour in Israel in 2012. God has left us speechless and breathless numerous times throughout the past decade.

Through our stewardship in leading our church’s outreach to Union Gospel Mission, we’ve had the privilege of sharing God’s Word and praying with a multitude of men and women to receive Christ as their Lord and Savior.

And to top it all off, most Sunday mornings I have the honor of helping lead our congregation in worship.

While taking up our cross and following Jesus hasn’t been the easiest road, it has been indescribably thrilling. For that, Terri and I are truly thankful. We look forward to the next ten years unless of course our Lord returns beforehand. Then we’ll celebrate singing His praises in Heaven.

God is good all the time and all the time God is good!

‘And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ Mark 12:30 (ESV)

 

 

Here We Are To Worship

Worship is our human response to God, acknowledging God’s worth and ascribing to God the glory that His name is due. As we bow down to our Creator, we recognize our relationship with our Maker. We come to the alter in awe of all God has done for us. We praise Him simply for who He is and what He has carried out in our lives. Once we were sinful wretches, spiritually blind and lost, whom God chose to shower with His grace and mercy, redeeming us into a right relationship with Himself through the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ.

Here I Am to Worship written by Tim Hughes

Light of the world
You stepped down into darkness
Opened my eyes, let me see
Beauty that made this heart adore You
Hope of a life spent with You

So here I am to worship
Here I am to bow down
Here I am to say that You’re my God

And You’re altogether lovely
Altogether worthy
Altogether wonderful to me

King of all days, oh so highly exalted
Glorious in heaven above
Humbly You came to the earth You created
All for love’s sake became poor

And I’ll never know how much it cost
To see my sin upon that cross
And I’ll never know how much it cost
To see my sin upon that cross

I do not know about you, but when I think about the Lord, I am overwhelmed by our Father’s love for us. His goodness blows me away. God is great. He is steadfast and faithful. Our God is truly an awesome God, who’s wonders never cease and who’s love never ends.

So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind.  Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,  in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Philippians 2:1-11 (ESV)

I haven’t always felt this way about God. Truth be told, it took me a long time to make my way through the door and kneel at the altar. I am grateful that through my journey, people prayed for me and God never gave up on me.

If you’re been wandering, lost and alone, know that God hasn’t given up on you either.

I’m praying for you.

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Free photos courtesy of Pixabay.

Original photos by Rainer Bantau Photography ©2017.