Developing a Sermon Calendar

I believe the Holy Spirit is God, the third member of the holy, undivided Trinity. Therefore, I believe the Holy Spirit is sovereign. God the Holy Spirit has unimpeachable authority over the times, details, and circumstances of our lives. He (not “It”) operates with perfect wisdom, eternal purpose, and infinite goodness. With this confidence, I […]

Please, Just Sing!

A national Gospel Music conference begins here inJacksonville today. It will meet for the next several days. I have not been invited to speak at this conference. Infact, it would be a safe bet that virtually no one who will attend thisconference even knows that something called H.B. Charles, Jr. exists. But I have something […]

On Long Series and Short Attention Spans

People have short attention spans. You cannot preach long series any more. It is best to keep sermon series short – six weeks at the most. Many who preach and many who teach preaching have concluded that society in general and congregations in particular have short attention spans. Churches cannot endure long sermon series anymore, […]

Sermons Don’t Grow On Trees

I am a husband, a father, and a pastor. These are my primary responsibilities. And these central roles, and all that go along with them, do not include the other responsibilities and opportunities the Lord has entrusted to me. I have a full and busy life. But there is one responsibility that is the more […]

What Made You Move?

“What made you move?” is the provocative question I was asked this afternoon. “I heard you mention that you recently relocated,” he continued. “What made you do it?” The inquirer did not know me personally. He has heard me preach and teach over the past several days, I presume. At the least, he had just […]

Should Young Children Receive Communion?

Like many Baptist congregations, the church I serve practices what is called open Communion, rather than closed Communion. This means that every professing believer who is present for our Lord’s Supper services is welcome to participate, whether they are a member of our local congregation or not. By extension, it also means that every true […]

On Church Hopping

A certain woman who jumped from church to church decided that she was not at the right place. She informed her pastor, “Well, I believe it’s time for me to move again.” Mustering a rare forthrightness, he replied, “That’s okay. It does not matter that much when you change labels on an empty bottle.” Of […]

On Formal Seminary Training

Over the years, I have been most embarrassed about the fact that I have not completed my formal ministry and theological training. I began my first pastorate during my senior year in high school. By the time I graduated, I was immersed in my pastoral work. It was not until a year or so later […]

Reflections on a Year of Blogging – 2008

It’s hard for me to believe it. But I have been writing this blog since the summer of 2005. Like many other would-be bloggers, I began a blog… well, just for fun. I did not have a “voice” or cause or message. I just wanted to write. And I can still remember the exasperated look […]

On Personal Devotions

What are personal devotions? Personal devotions are intentional appointments in which you spend private time with God. Scripture warns us not to neglect the corporate meetings of God’s people (Heb. 10:24-25). But your faith will be shallow and your growth will be stunted if you only pay attention to God during public, corporate gatherings. In […]