Thankful for 25 Years of Pastoral Ministry

November 5, 1990. I ditched school that Monday morning. I had a funeral to preach. For the first half of the year, I preached the 11:00 AM service at my father’s church on first Sundays. But the first Sunday in August was the last time. I preached a sermon that Sunday, entitled, “Waited Time On […]

Lessons My Father Taught Me

My father was H.B. Charles Sr. He pastored the Mt. Sinai Missionary Baptist Church in Los Angeles for 40 years, until his death in 1989. All I saw my father do was serve the church. Whether I became a preacher or not, my father’s example taught me to associate Christianity with serving others. The Lord […]

Pastor, Who Do You Represent?

I was introduced to the young man after a worship service. He had recently moved to the city for work and was looking for a church home. I prayed for him. I also asked him to call my office to set up a time for us to talk. But I was not looking forward to the […]

Don’t Try To Put Out Every Brush Fire!

My secretary stopped me in the hallway. She was obviously upset. I asked what was wrong. She began to weep. This was one of the most godly women I knew. And I couldn’t handle it when she cried. She often wept for others, rarely for herself. I pressed her to talk, only to discover she […]

Seeing Beyond the Rubble of Ministry

We had three fulltime pastors on staff besides me. For this midsize church I served, this was a big deal. Ministry should have been a joy. It was, instead, a time of great discouragement. The pastoral team was a blessing. But I did not know how to lead the team. At a result, the obvious […]

Guarding Your Heart in the Pulpit

In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus warned his followers not to practice spiritual devotion with ulterior motives (Matthew 6:1-18). Do not give to the needy to be celebrated for your generosity. Do not pray to be heard by men. Do not fast so people will consider you spiritual. How do you avoid practicing Godward […]

I’m Jealous of the #HealthyPreacherMovement

Preachers are getting in shape. Social media is littered with pictures of preachers exercising to get or keep their weight under control and live healthy lives. Way cool! In the crucible of my schedule, I often neglect to maintain a healthy diet and exercise regimen. But the noted milestones of exercising preachers challenge me to […]

Prayer and the Ministry of the Word

The church was growing. The threat of persecution could not stop it (Acts 4). The threat of corruption could not stop it (Acts 5). But the enemy still had another trick up his sleeve: internal division. The Greek-speaking Jews complained against the Hebrews that their widows were being neglected in the daily distribution of food. […]

Give Mark a Minute!

I have always wanted to preach a sermon or teach a lesson entitled, “Give Mark a Minute!” Do you know who John Mark is? John Mark assisted Paul and Barnabas on their first missionary journey (Acts 12:25; 13:5). At some point, however, John Mark left the team and returned to Jerusalem (13:13-14). The gospel work […]