One big weekend in my life was followed by another big weekend. After spending my final weekend as pastor of Mt. Sinai, this was my first weekend with my new congregation – Shiloh Metropolitan Baptist Church.
I got very little sleep Saturday night. I was thinking and praying about Sunday morning. I chatted with several prayer partners. I even watched a little boxing (Sugar Shane wins by KO at 2:59 minutes of the 12th round. Wow!). I only got a couple of hours of sleep. But I was not sleepy at all when it was time for me to get up. I was refreshed, focused, and ready for the day.
Saturday night, Natalie’s temperature to shoot up past 102. She was not feeling well. Sunday morning, Crystal didn’t complain of a headache as the did the night before. But her temperature was past 103. We decided that she needed to go the hospital.
So I finished getting ready to go preach, while Crystal got ready to take Natalie to the hospital. One problem. We didn’t really know where to take her. We live near a hospital, but we called and they did not had a pediatrics desk. So we planned for Crystal to take her downtown to the hospital that we had seen on the freeway as went to church.
Crystal was only in the hospital for a few hours. She and Natalie went home with instructions for rest and medication. By early evening, Natalie was feeling much better. Thank you so much for your prayers.
I felt uncomfortable not having Crystal, Natalie, and Hailey in church with me. It was weird.
Trey went to church with me. He kept wanting to know what I was so nervous. Funny.
The members of Shiloh were very kind and encouraging. I am very grateful. I know that the Lord could have sent me anywhere. He could have sent me to a place where preaching is out of season. He could have sent me to a place where there are major doctrinal errors to be corrected. He could have sent me to a cold, unloving church. Praise God for the fact that he has sent me to serve a church that is sound in its doctrine and loving in its fellowship. What a blessing!
I preached on the Great Commission of Jesus Christ, recorded in Matthew 28:16-20. I have absolutely no gauge for how the sermon went. The whole day was somewhat surreal for me. But I know that the Lord had placed that message on my heart to preach. I have a burden that God would we would be intentionally and persistently faithful to what the Lord Jesus has commanded the church to be and do.
For some reason, Sunday was a stark reminder to me that I am still a young preacher who has so much to learn and so much growing to do. May the Lord help me to live 2 Timothy 2:15.
I am still figuring things out. Matters of time, flow of service, and church culture, and congregational patterns are still new to me. And I need to just give myself some time to figure things out. I hope Shiloh will be (or remain) patient with me during these opening weeks of my ministry.
By the way, I can’t wait to get back to the pulpit this Wednesday and next Sunday to preach to Shiloh some more.
When I got home, I couldn’t relax for some reason. But I received a text message from Los Angeles, informing me that Mt. Sinai would need a new roof, because George had preached the roof off the joint. And that was just 8 AM service! I was glad to here it. I had been much in prayer that the Lord would bless the day of worship at Mt. Sinai and that the Lord would use George to preach in a great way. Thank God for answered prayers. After receiving this news, I soon laid down for my afternoon nap.
As you probably already know, the Dallas Cowboys lost to the Washington Redskins 26-24. There will be no perfect season for us. But nothing can stop the stampede. On to the Superbowl!
The Jacksonville Jaguars needed an overtime field goal to barely a victory against the (hapless) Houston Texans 30-27. They are not 2-2 on the season. But who’s counting?
How serious are Shiloh members about football? When I was leaving the building, I saw men in the hall wearing Jaguars jerseys, carrying the suits they had worn to church on hangers. Straight to the game! I am not mad at them.
One more thing. I am very excited about the days to come. I pray and believe and expect God to do great things for his glory in us and through us as we serve the Lord together as pastor and people at the Shiloh Church.