Friday, December 31, 2010

New Series on "The Growth of the Church"

Beginning this Sunday, January 2, 2011, I will begin preaching a series of lessons on "The Growth of the Church" during the afternoon service. These lessons are planned to be presented on the afternoons of January 2, 16, 30, February 6, and 20. The five lessons will be dealing with the topics of: 1) The Growth of the Church, 2) The Problem of Sin in the Church, 3) Keeping the Church Pure, 4) Church Growth By Right Relationships, 5) Church Growth by Faith. This series will reinforce how important the church is and how we can ensure that the church will continue to grow both numerically and most importantly spiritually. Church growth begins with each one of us. We must ensure that we are truly devoted in making sure that we personally are practicing discipleship, being effective, positive, and spiritual leaders in our home, and being a great encouragement to all others in the local congregation. This series of lessons that will include the outlines and PowerPoint charts will be available on my web site at as each lesson is completed. 

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Training Up Our Children Properly

If we as parents train our children in God's ways, will they stay committed? In the book of Proverbs it says, "Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it" (Proverbs 22:6). While it is true that each individual will ultimately be held accountable before God for his or her actions in life (2 Corinthians 10:5) and no matter what someone learns in life, they still choose whether to do right or wrong, God has said that one will not depart from the right way to go when one is trained. I know of many young people that have abandoned the church and quit serving the Lord after they have left home and the oversight of their parents. Parents will often times say that they do not know what they did wrong. They made sure they came to Bible class and to church services every week. But is that really what God meant when He said to "train up a child in the way he should go?" We can learn from the book of Deuteronomy how intensive godly training must be. "Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates" (Deuteronomy 6:4-9). These verses clearly show us that proper godly training entails that we talk about God and His word to our children morning, day, and night. He must be our first and primary priority in all that we say and do. No daily action or decision should be made without consulting God's Word and through prayer. Can it truly be said in our family that we are teaching our children constantly and consistently through our own personal example and by studying God's Word with them on a daily basis? Does serving God become our primary goal in life? Think about it. Based on what Moses told the Israelites in Deuteronomy, chapter 6, are we really training up our children in the ways that Moses instructed the Israelites to train their children? Knowing God, serving God, and living for God was their life. When we and our children get to the point where we truly know God, serve God, and live for God in all we say and do, then it can be said that we are training up our children in the ways that they should go and as a result they will not depart from it. May we all do the very best we can to ensure that we as parents are truly training up our children properly.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Actions Speak Louder Than Words

Jesus said in Matthew 7:21, "Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven." From this one verse we can clearly see that everyone of us has a responsibility to ourselves and God to make sure that we do His will if we ever expect to be able to enter into heaven. As parents, not only do we need to make sure we are doing God's will, but we have a responsibility to ensure that our children are raised in the ways of God. "And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord" (Ephesians 6:4). Our children are truly a blessing from God and we parents must make sure that we raise them properly. God expects us to live a spiritual life, truly devoted to Him and that we set the right example for our own children. We can't expect them to become godly and of good character if we are not godly ourselves. Remember, our talk talks and our walk talks, but our walk talks more than our talk talks. It is not what we say that will make the difference -- it is our actions that speak the loudest. We should never expect our children to speak or act differently than we do.  May we all strive to do God's will and train our children to do likewise so that we can all look forward to being together in heaven!

Monday, December 20, 2010

PowerPoint Backgrounds and Fonts

I have been producing PowerPoint charts for sermons and classes since 2003. Before that I created color charts for the overhead projector. I have learned a lot of things about PowerPoint in the last 7 years and I am still learning. When preparing charts there are two very important things to remember. 1) The background should be very light with dark print (such as white or light blue with black print) or a very dark background with light print (such as dark red or blue with white print). 2) The font type and size should be very clear to the audience. There are two basic fonts that I have used for several years that I have found to be very easy for the audience to follow and those are the Souvenir and Arial fonts. Also, make sure that the font size is no smaller than 24 point (28 to 36 is best). Another very important point to understand is that what your chart looks like on the computer screen will not necessarily be what it looks like projected from the projector in the church building's auditorium. A few weeks ago I put some charts together with a light red color on a black background and it looked very sharp, bright, and colorful on my computer. When I hooked it up to the projector at the building, I could barely see any of the words created in the light red. As long as I have been doing this it would seem that I would learn! I have used a few projectors that do a great job (looks just like the computer), while most of them do not do the charts justice. The very best charts are those created with a white or VERY light background with black, dark blue, or dark red print. The Arial, or similar font, stands out better than most.
On my next posting dealing with PowerPoint charts I will talk about  "themes."

Saturday, December 18, 2010

The Purity of Christ

As I sit here looking out my window at the beautiful snow falling, it reminds me of the beauty and purity of Christ. The Psalmist wrote: "Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow" and also, "The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart; The commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes" (Psalms 51:7; 19:8). Jesus' words are certainly pure and they should direct our every motive and action in life. Christians have so much to be thankful for and the greatest gift that we have received is the sacrifice of Jesus so that we, through obedience to His commands, may have eternal life with Him. Christians should be the most motivated individuals on earth to want to do everything we possibly can to ensure that we are living our life in purity, striving to be just like our Lord. In the early first Century, the first converts to Christianity "continued daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they ate their food with gladness and simplicity of heart" (Acts 2:46). I want to encourage each one of us to make sure that we remain pure, just like the fresh snow that falls, so that we can be a great and uplifting encouragement to one another as we faithfully do Christ's Will.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Inappropriate Movies and Television Shows

As the days go by, more and more people are occupying their time watching movies and television shows. Although there is nothing sinful about watching a movie and watching television, it is sinful to watch things that are not appropriate for Christians to watch. Any show that has vulgar language, taking God's name in vain, showing inappropriate scenes, etc. should not be watched by Christians. We are to fill our minds with purity (Philippians 4:8), and to purify ourselves as Jesus is pure (1 John 3:3). We cannot let our light shine and give glory to God (Matthew 5:16), while filling our minds and thoughts with inappropriate words and material. Before watching anything just ask yourself 1) Would I feel comfortable inviting other Christians, the preacher, elders, deacons and their families to come over and watch the movie or TV program with me? 2) Would I feel comfortable knowing that Jesus Himself was sitting right there next to me watching that movie? The fact is, Jesus is there with you. He knows everything that you watch, etc. I was in one congregation at one time where some of the young people were getting together to watch movies together on a monthly basis. I wondered why my daughter (who was their age) was not invited to come and watch movies with them. I later found out it was because they did not feel comfortable having the "preachers daughter" watch some of the movies that they were watching. Christians (young and old) should be glad to have one another in their homes, sharing "all things common" (Acts 2:44). Christian families should feel confident that when their children visit the homes of other Christians that only wholesome, God approved activities will go on there. May we all strive to keep the words of the apostle Paul in our thoughts: "Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him" (Colossians 3:17).

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Live for Christ - Not the World

If we live "for Christ" as Christians are supposed to do, then we will not engage ourselves in anything that we could not picture our Lord engaging in. The apostle Paul wrote: "Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy--meditate on these things" (Philippians 4:8). I want to encourage us to take a step back and honestly look at what this passage of scripture is telling us. That which is "true", "noble", "just", "pure", "lovely", "of good report", that is what we are to meditate on. When Christians allow themselves to be influenced with worldly things and often times being let astray by so called "friends" who do not have our soul's interest at heart, then we are not truly meditating on the things that Paul just spoke about. We cannot be the right example to others when we are practicing anything that is displeasing to God. Why is it that the Lord's church is not growing as it should be today? Perhaps you can suggest a few reasons in your comments. But I will say that one main reason we are not growing is because the Christians that make up the church are not always living their lives as God would want them to live and as a result it sends the signal that there are many hypocrites in the church. Paul did everything he possibly could to ensure that he was living "for Christ." He was so confident in his life's service to Him that he said "Imitate me, just as I also imitate Christ" (1 Corinthians 11:1). Can it truly be said of us that we are really imitating Christ? 

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

History and Geography of the Bible CD

The History and Geography of the Bible CD contains over 940 PowerPoint charts of the 52 lessons that are contained in the History and Geography of the Bible Story manual that was published by Bob and Sandra Waldron. This CD also contains questions and answers for each of the 52 lessons in the study manual. Preachers, Bible class teachers, and home school families will profit greatly from all the material and maps that are included on this CD. To find out more information about this CD and to view lesson 13, please go to the following link: After reviewing the information, you may order the CD from that page. The CD will be shipped to you immediately. 

New and Updated Blog

I am planning on providing blog posts on a regular basis. These posts will primarily deal with living our lives righteously as Christians. I am constantly amazed at how many Christians are allowing themselves to get caught up in the ways of the world, and although they are attending services each week, far too many are not striving to live their lives in a righteous manner Monday through Saturday. In addition, I will post other religious articles, keep you updated on my web site activity, and also provide some helpful information from time to time on PowerPoint presentations. My web site, is updated every Sunday night with a new sermon or two, along with the weekly article that was included in that days bulletin. I look forward to your comments and feedback as we collectively do what we can to live our lives fully committed to Christ.

Walking in the Light Bulletin

I have been editing and publishing a bulletin entitled "Walking in the Light" since 2001. The bulletin articles are emailed to more than 800 people each week. If you want to be included on the bulletin mailing list please go to the San Juan church of Christ web site at and complete the two boxes on the front page and submit your information. I will receive your information within a few minutes after you submit it. The bulletin is usually emailed every Sunday night.    

Gospel Meetings

My gospel meeting schedule for 2011 is already booked up. I am now in the process of scheduling meetings for 2012 and 2013. Please send me an email message if you would be interested in me holding a gospel meeting at your congregation in one of the projected time slots.

March 20-25, 2011 - Congdon Avenue church of Christ, Elgin, IL
April 17-22, 2011 - Crescent Park church of Christ, Odessa, TX
May 8-13, 2011 - New Georgia church of Christ, Rogersville, AL
August (DTBD), 2011 - Funny River Rd church of Christ, Soldotna, AK
2013 (Dates to be determined) - Downtown church of Christ, Rogers, AR

Spring 2012 (March - May):
Fall 2012 (August - October):
Spring 2013 (March - May):
Fall 2013 (August - October):

Thetford Country Web Site

You're invited to visit my web site at You will find sermons with PowerPoint charts, bulletin articles, radio lessons, class material and other information. 

Churches Looking for Preachers

Non-institutional churches of Christ are welcome to post an ad on my web site if you are looking for a preacher. To post an ad for "Churches Looking for Preachers"  and also "Preachers Looking for Churches" please go to the two new pages of the web site designed especially for this purpose. Churches who are looking for preachers can now go to and click on the "Churches Looking for Preachers" link and fill out the easy form to submit your information. The listing will be updated on the web site within 48 hours (usually the same day). This information will be kept current so that churches and preachers can have confidence that these listings are accurate and up to date. I would appreciate it if you would let any churches who are looking for a preacher know that this site is available for them to place their posting. Thank you.