Joy to the World! The Lord Has Come – 12/4/11

Although he only caught a quick glimpse and hadn’t seen her since that beautiful sun drenched autumn afternoon, he couldn’t get the young woman out of his mind. In his entire eighty two years of living on this planet, nobody had even come close to making such a delightful impression on the old widower. And no one, including the man himself, would ever have imagined he would be wishing he could have had a brief conversation with this total stranger.

Set My Soul on Fire, Lord – 10/8/11
It may interest you to know that I gave much more prayerful consideration before I made a couple of very personal remarks in the “9/11 Sermon” than anything I have ever shared from this pulpit. I was quoting John MacDuff and came to the part where he wrote: “This present world is a ‘valley of tears’ and a ‘wilderness of woe.’ While passing through it, we’re exposed to sorrows and sufferings of various kinds. Pain and disease surround us and many Christians in their awful anguish would rather die than continue living.”

The 9/11 Sermon – 9/11/11
Ten years ago today thousands of people had their lives suddenly snuffed out by a fiendish

enemy most Americans didn’t even know existed. On what is commonly known as 9/11, countless others suffered enormous physical and emotional pain, the extent of which is impossible to calculate. As a result of not being aware of our enemy we were clueless of what we were up against and the steps we could take to defeat them.

The Devil’s Most Powerful Weapons pt III – 8/18/11
Its great being back amongst you folks because you are SOME of the people God has led me to. The reason being is that He wanted me to love and protect you as a shepherd does sheep. During this latest period of being in the dreaded “Furnace of Affliction” I’ve had lots of time to recall how He caused most of us to cross paths and the positive impact we have had on each other.

The Devil’s Most Powerful Weapons pt II – 6/19/11
Every Father’s Day my thoughts wander back to my dad who died when he was only 42 and I was 12 years old. Think about that! That’s a younger age than Victoria, Zac and Michael’s Poppa’s are. I remember him as being a soft spoken, tall slim man who was well read. I loved it whenever he invited me to crawl into his bed where he told me about cool books that boy’s my age would enjoy. Stories such as: “Moby Dick;” “The Call of the Wild;” “Treasure Island;” and the “Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.”

The Devil’s Most Powerful Weapons pt I – 6/12/11
t’s always helpful to receive feedback on my sermons and I appreciate it very much. For instance, our friend Guy began his latest by saying: “I just finished reading your message. There is a lot of meat to chew on and I will need to read this a couple of times to get the most benefit.” That’s why I’m always encouraging you folks to listen attentively to my message and later get a printed copy of the written version.

The Lord Almighty is Completely Sovereign – 6/5/11
Most of you folks know I often mention the fact in my sermons and Bible studies that the more I plumb the debts of the Sacred Scriptures, the more convinced I become of how shallow my understanding and knowledge of them actually are. I’m not too old to learn and I hope I never con myself into believing otherwise. Discovering biblical facts which had never completely sunk into my understanding or truths I had overlooked in the past is something I delight in.

My Mom Just Didn’t Know pt II – 5/15/11
As I mentioned last week, all things considered, I had a very enjoyable time celebrating our 53rd wedding anniversary at the beginning of this month. For those of you who weren’t here allow me to explain. My wife and I left for our vacation very early on Sunday morning. I didn’t mention the fact that I had received a very upsetting email from a hurting young woman most of you folks know and care about greatly.

My Mom Just Didn’t Know pt I – 5/8/11
Although I think of her often and thank God for having blessed me through that wonderful woman, I’m more apt to publicly tell folks about my love and appreciation for my mom on Mother’s Day than I am the rest of the year. As I look back throughout the almost 78 years of my life; I’m increasingly convinced that of all the women I have ever known or been aware of she was the perfect mom for me

A Perfect Storm (REVISED) – 4/24/11
Supported by arm crutches necessitated by a noticeably impaired left leg, the old visiting preacher slowly made his way up the center aisle and into the pulpit of the little country church. He had just been introduced by the churches’ pastor as a man through whom God had been using to bless a lot of His hurting children throughout the years.

Why God, Why pt III – 4/17/11
This is the third in my series of sermons through which I have been trying to answer our friend Dick’s question, ‘Why God, Why?’ I was encouraged to learn he thought the first one was great. Dick quickly printed a copy of it for each of his children and some of his friends at the Fanny Allen Hospital. Needless to say, I was pleased. And then, just before I finished last week’s sermon, I received the following email from Dick.

Why God, Why pt II – 4/10/11
During the past several months the Lord has been providing me with extremely unique and unexpected spiritual blessings concerning reality. Although He probably has many reasons for doing so, there’s one I’m absolutely certain of. I’m doing the job He called me to do. I’m watching over you folks as your pastor, and that involves taking unrelenting spiritual and physical hits on your behalf.

Why God, Why pt I – 4/3/11
I didn’t know where it was coming from or who it was, but I suddenly heard an eerie voice speaking to me. The man just started to address me with a litany of emotion-less accusations. I can’t quote him verbatim but here’s an idea of part of what he told me. “You are a pathetic example of someone who claims to be a follower of Jesus, Mike.

The Great Earthquake in Japan – And God – 3/20/11
Referring to the recent earthquake and tsunami in Japan, yesterday’s edition of The Burlington Free Press reported that 7,197 people had died-exceeding the deaths from the 1995 Kobe earthquake. Another 10,909 were reported missing. One week later the earthquake and tsunami spawned a nuclear crisis. The entire world was on alert, watching for any evidence of dangerous spikes in radioactivity, or that damage to the Japanese economy might send ripple effects around the globe.

The Mind of Christ pt IV – 3/13/11
Unbelievers’ exhibiting what appears to be the mind of Christ in their daily lives often cause confusion for some Christians. Although these folks want nothing to do with Christ and His church, their benevolent Christ-like acts of compassion and mercy often outshine those of all too many Christians. That’s why it’s tempting to erroneously conclude that the person must somehow be a believer.

The Mind of Christ pt III – 2/27/11
I’m sure there have been times in your life when your appreciation for gazing at a beautiful sunset, watching an adorable smile unfold on a little child’s face while he or she is being complemented, or savoring the beauty and fragrance of a midsummer flower garden, walking along a sandy beach on a balmy moon lit evening, or listening to a delightful melody; I’m sure you’re your appreciation for all these was heightened when you were in the presence of a person who couldn’t.

The Mind of Christ pt II – 2/13/11
I’m sorry the snow storm prevented you folks from attending last week and hearing the message the Lord laid on my heart to share with you. Although I preached it for the few who were here I didn’t post it on my site because I know folks get more out of my messages from hearing them preached than from reading them later. That’s why I’m going to preach it again today.

The Mind of Christ pt I – 1/23/11
Other than at a wedding or funeral service, I haven’t seen such serious facial expressions elicited by something I said from the pulpit as I witnessed last week. Unmistakable signs of shock and strong disagreement with me were written all over some of your faces in reaction with my having asked: “Before creating the world, did God chose those whom He knew, would of their own free will, eventually accept forgiveness offered through Christ and then enter the names of those folks in the book of life?

The Book of Death – 1/16/11
When I was midway through crafting last Sunday’s sermon, I became increasingly convinced it had the makings of being a very thought provoking and inspiring one. I knew without a doubt the Lord wanted me to share it with you folks on Sunday and I could hardly wait to do so. However, when I thought about the number of folks I knew for certain wouldn’t be here and folks I had reason to believe may not feel up to attending, and then factored in the predicted treacherous snow storm

Walking with Jesus – 1/9/11
I doubt if most Americans spend much time thinking about the beginning of human history or if they ever seriously meditate upon all the mind-boggling activity that occurred before it began. A constant state of sinful busyness seems to be the prevailing norm in our society. It’s a sad fact that all too many of us Christians have allowed ourselves to become caught up in pursuing the things of the world to the delight of those diabolical cosmic forces of darkness.