Pastor Chad's Itinarary

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Shepherd the Flock

Acts 20:28 Pay careful attention to yourselves and to all the flock in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care for the church of God, which he obtained with his own blood.

This past week has proved itself very edifying. My worship minister and I left for St.Louis this past Tuesday for a two day conference on "Shepherding the Flock of God." The speakers were Tom Ascol (FL), Ray Van Neste (TN), and Phil Newton (from my hometown in AL). All three of these men give great exegesis of the texts and practical applications to carry back with us.
My heart as a pastor has always been the local church and the Lord's people there. But beginning in my new ministry here in TN, this conference remined me to love the people God has entrusted to me. Often times we can become overwhelmed with our daily tasks we forget God's bride the local church. The redeemed of God which makes the local church up. An elder, overseer, or pastor must be willing to learn his people and to know what issues they are dealing with in life. Often we as pastors (including me) want to hide away in the dark recesses of our study were it is nice, quiet, and safe.
As pastors we must get out into our peoples lives and shepherd them all the way to Christ! I pray the Lord will allow me to love the sheep and be personal with them until Christ returns. For their good and for His glory!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

James 1:5) If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. (ESV)

In the world today wisdom is something which is rarely sought after. Wisdom is a gift from that is given to those who ask. I am afraid in the culture we live in, espeacially in the western world, we think we are to use our own wisdom and intellect. The Bible teaches us "God has made foolish the wisdom of the world." We have no wisdom outside of the Lord. It is my prayer the Lord would bless me with Biblical wisdom. What I need as a pastor is the wisdom of the Lord. There are so many decisions in which I stand to make as a pastor. These decisions must be made with wisdom of the Lord. I pray God would grant to each child of God wisdom that leads to eternal life in Christ Jesus.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

"Go Make Disciples"

Matthew 28:19-20) "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age."
Our thinking has been on discipleship of lately. What does it mean to be a disciple of Jesus Christ?
Disciples are people who have a deep, abiding commitment to a person (Jesus Christ), not simply a philosophy. They hold to Jesus' teaching (John 8:31-32); they love one another (John 13:35) and help each other (Matt.10:42); they bear fruit for Christ (John 15:8) and are partners with him in service (Luke 5:1-11).... putting him ahead of all other earthly commitments (Matt.8:21-22) to the extent that they are willing to suffer for the sake of the gospel (Matt.10:17-23)."

May we as a local church pastors, elders, and deacons; "make disciples" of people who the Lord places in our lives. Being a disciple is not an opposition when one is born again. They will follow after their Lord and Savior, they will be willing by the Holy Spirit.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Discipleship 101

2 Timothy 2:2) "and what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also."

One thing I have noticed in my early journey as a young pastor is the need for discipleship. When I say discipleship, I do not mean another class where we buy more LifeWay material. Discipleship is more than a class it is a life style.
The word disciple is found some 268 times in the scriptures. The Greek word (mathetes) has the meaning of a learner, a pupil, or a disciple. What I see in our churches are not learners or pupils after Christ. We have been programed to come and do our religious duty on Sunday morning and say we have been discipled. Wrong!!! In the Great Commission, Jesus tells His disciples, "to go and make disciples and then baptize them, and then teach them to obey."
I have failed miserably when it comes to disciplining. My heart is for the church to see her need for a heart felt passion in learning after Christ. I realize one must be converted and be drawn by the Holy Spirit to have the desire to learn after Christ. Often I thought if we just had another class for discipleship or another study on discipleship this would answer the question. We can have all the classes one can have but if a person has not "been born from above" (John 3:3) by the Holy Spirit it is all worthless. They will be trying in their own strength, which will only last for a little while.
One item I have learned from the scriptures, Jesus did not disciple the multitude, he discipled the twelve. He poured himself into twelve men who were faithful to go and to teach others. This is what the Lord's churches need today.
"Discipleship is about time more than anything else. How much time did Jesus spend with His disciples?" As born again Christians we must invest time with those God has entrusted us with. Think about it, how much time do we invest into others for the advancement of God's Kingdom and to strengthen His church? I believe this is where real discipleship begins. I pray the Lord will allow me to invest time into others that they will be able to instruct others, for the glory of God.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Availabiltiy Not Capability

Exodus 4:10) But Moses said to the Lord, "Oh my Lord, I am not eloquent in the past or since you have spoken to your servant, but "I am slow of speech and of tongue."(ESV)
I have been reading a book for my Christian Missions class called, "Amazing Grace." In the book Dr.Bruce Carlton tells of his experience of being a missionary in Cambodia for twenty years. He speaks of a man who was regenerated by the grace of God and he had a heart for doing construction work and wanted serve God, some how. God used this man to help construct new buildings for the churches in Cambodia as the Lord saw fit to organize them.
The point behind this particular chapter of the book is being available for God to use us. I see so many professing Christians who are on the sidelines and not in the "fight of faith." I believe one of two things has happened, (1) they do not know Christ or (2) they have not been abiding in the vine (John 15:5). I am reminded of Moses in (Exodus 3) as God calls him to lead the children out of Egypt. Moses comes up with various reasons why he can not lead them. God tells him he is not concerned with his capability but his availability.
The Lord is not concern about our capabilities. Because He tells us "apart from me you can do nothing." We are not our own source of strength. We must rely upon the Holy Spirit of God to enable us to serve Him and to honor Him. Are you available for God or are you like Moses with the excuse "I am unable?" What do we spend our energy on, our time, and our money on. As the redeemed of God lets be available to serve Him knowing our capabilities will be given by Him.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Should I or Should I Not?

Should a pastor blog? This is the question I have wrestled with the last few weeks. My family and I have recently moved to northern Tennessee to pastor the Pleasant Hill Baptist church. I question myself with just getting settled in and taking a few classes at the Boyce College in Louisville, don't forget three boys who are very active as well, is there enough time to do everything. Well, Abraham Piper answered my question today. The Lord used Him to share alot of good thoughts and how blogging would be beneficial to the congregation and to others. Anyway I am going to give it a shot and see how well it works out. I pray it would be a blessing to me and not a burden and maybe a blessing to someone else.
1 Cor.10:31) Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.