Sunday, May 29, 2005

Memorial Day

Memorial Day

You know what I remember most?

That it’s war which makes us remember just how valuable peace is.

It’s war that reminds us how much we need God.

We who were and are now soldiers are not soldiers so that we can fight, but soldiers so that hopefully someday others won’t have to.

May God bless all those soldiers and the families who paid the ultimate price for the freedoms we hold dear.

As John Glenn recently said, “If you can read this, thank a teacher. If you can read it in English, thank a soldier!“

May God bless America!

Today at GTCOTR is:

Family Sunday


Won’t you turn in your bibles to Genesis 18, Verse 19 (Authorized/King James Version)

Genesis 18:19 For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the LORD, to do justice and judgment; that the LORD may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him.

God chose Abraham because He knew that Abraham would instruct his children, friends and family concerning the ways of the Lord.

Tonight I will have the privilege of speaking in the first church that Brenda and I ever pioneered - Word of Faith Church in Simms, Texas.

In 1981 I wrote what I believed God had spoken to me about that church on the wall of that church directly behind the pulpit, facing the congregation. It read:

“You won’t leave here like you came in Jesus’ Name!”

I repeated that confession of faith so often for so many years that today, almost 25 years later, I still believe that about the Word of Faith in Simms, Texas. And the people there are still experiencing that dynamic every time they come together as believers.

During those years pioneering our first church, learning how to pastor, how to preach and how to raise a Godly family, we didn’t realize just how wonderful we had it.

Sure it cost us everything we had. In fact Brenda and I actually sold everything we had, every piece of furniture, all our pots and pans, my guns, our two cars and even the children’s toys just to get the chance to begin this new adventure.

We started with 7 people in a trailer house that belonged to my mom and dad. Later we were able to buy an old church building for $200. I borrowed some house moving equipment from a friend of mine, and me, my dad, my brother-in-law, an uncle, a cousin and Brenda moved that building 10 miles down the road and set it back up on blocks in my dad’s pasture. I rode on the top of that building lifting up the electrical & phone lines all along US Highway 67.

That building had been vacant for several years and the floor was rotted out. We had garage sales and sold more stuff and raised enough money to buy some 2X10s. During that winter me and Brenda would bundle up our children and ourselves, then crawl up under that building. I would get a nail started in one end of a 20’ board and then go down to the other end and get my shoulder under the board.

As I strained and lifted, we didn’t have a jack that would work, I would push up as hard and as high as I could and just hold it until Brenda, taking both hands on that framing hammer, could pound that 20 penny nail in and crawl down to my end and do another one. Often she would stop in the middle to re-collect the children.

We textured, painted, re-floored and found some discarded multicolored carpet squares samples that we laid out in one small room. By late winter, without any heat that first Sunday, we opened those doors for our first service there. Man it was cold.

I played the guitar and led singing, Brenda kept the nursery and taught the youngest children in a 8’ by 8’ corner room with the carpet samples. Earlier I had dug a hole and buried a 55 gallon barrel and ran some pipe to it from a toilet I placed in a closet and ran a water hose and fitted it to the tank - so we did have a restroom of sorts. This was church! A dream come true. Soon the church filled up.

Even though we did not get to buy another car for 2 years and had to call someone and get a ride so I could preach Sunday mornings, evenings and on Wednesday nights, we nonetheless felt on top of the world. During that time we learned the joy of building the family of God. From that place we reached out and touched the whole world.

As young parents, Brenda and I both wanted our children to know the value of faith and the power of making a good faith-filled confession based on the word of God. So, we set about systematically teaching our children at home and challenging them to use their faith and pray the promises and not the problem.

One day, I believe it was in early May 1982 April, our 4 ½ year old daughter, decided that she wanted a puppy. This seemed like a good time to teach her how to exercise her faith. We saw no reason why God would not want her to have a dog so Brenda and I told her that we were not going to do anything to get her a puppy but wanted her to begin praying, believing God and making her faith confession about the puppy she wanted. We told her that if she got one, it would be a miracle from God in answer to her prayer.

After about a week I received a phone call from a friend who lived about 30 miles away. He said that the Lord had placed it on his heart to bring my little girl a puppy from a litter his dog had just had. Without saying anything else I told him it would be fine and we agreed that he would call us back in a few weeks when the puppies were old enough so we could make final arrangements.

After a few days Brenda and I noticed that April was walking around the house and yard playing with her as yet invisible puppy. She would get it water and food, open the door to let it in and out and run and call for the puppy to chase her. It was cute and we knew that her faith was working but we did not dare say anything. This continued without any sign of April growing tired or getting weary in her faith.

After about a month the man called back and said that the puppies were weaned and that he would bring one to a picnic our church was having at a local park on that Sunday afternoon. We agreed and I hung up the phone.

Just at that moment April came through the kitchen with her invisible puppy. As she turned to go toward her bedroom she called out, “come on Brownie!” As you can imagine this alarmed both Brenda and me and all of the sudden our faith was taxed. “Did she say Brownie?” She had already named this dog and she had evidently picked out the color too. What should we do. We did not want our little girl to be disappointed with the wrong dog or a dog the wrong color … what would this do to her faith?

After a moment of sudden, gripping fear and questioning one another about as to whether or not we needed to call the man back and see if he could bring a brown one if he had it, we got a hold of ourselves and decided that this was a real good time for us to work on our faith too. We decided to just trust God and let Him be the God of our children too.

That Sunday afternoon came and we were with our church family in the park. Brenda and I watched as the van pulled up and our friend got out with a puppy under his arm. As he set it down on the grass, April, from at least a hundred feet or more away stopped in her tracks and yelled out loud - “Brownie!”. Without anyone saying anything to her about it she ran across a foot bridge, up a hill and scooped up that little brown long eared short legged puppy and as she cuddled him she said, “there you are Brownie, I wondered when you would finally get here.”

Perhaps no one else knew that day just exactly why Brenda and I were crying. It was not for the gift of the puppy as many supposed, but it was for the goodness and grace of a faithful God who loved and listened to our little girl and her heartfelt prayer and confession.

Since that time I could not begin to tell you just how much Brenda and I have come to rely upon the faith and prayers of agreement from our children. We have been successful in raising prayer partners who know their God and trust His goodness.

Last year when the doctors suggested that April have an abortion in light of some pre-natal test results done on the child in her womb, she went to her God and then to her family for prayer support. Today little baby Joshua is a strong and healthy member of our family and soon I will get the chance to begin teaching him how to trust in the living God who hears and answers prayer.

Earlier we read from Genesis 18:19 which told us that God made covenant with Abraham because God knew that Abraham would take a Godly interest in raising his children and influencing his family and friends to follow the ways of the Lord.

Let’s look back at Genesis 18 for a moment before we close.

This passage contains the story of God sending three angels to check on the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah. It was God’s intent to destroy these cities if peradventure all of the sin which had been reported was actually being done in these cities.

These were the cities where Lot, Abraham’s nephew, had chosen to live. It was God’s knowledge that Abraham cared about his family which may have provoked God to send His angels by to visit with Abraham in the first place.

Let’s see what God says about Abraham in the three verses above, specifically Genesis 18:16-19

16 ¶ And the men rose up from thence, and looked toward Sodom: and Abraham went with them to bring them on the way.

17 And the LORD said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do;

18 Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him?

19 For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of the LORD, to do justice and judgment; that the LORD may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him.

What does God know about you?

Are you the father or mother that God dreamed about giving your children?

Are you the husband or wife that God dreamed about giving your spouse?

Are you the son or daughter that God dreamed about giving your parents?

Are you the friend that God dreamed about giving your friends?

If not, why not?

Come on - decide right now to:

Be the best you God designed you to be - To care about and influence others to Godliness.

You can make a difference in their lives! - or not! - it’s up to yo

Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Exits and Emergencies

Exits and Emergencies


Every road leads somewhere. Where is the road you are currently on leading?

Two Key Scriptures: NKJV

Proverbs 22:3 ¶ A prudent man foresees evil and hides himself, But the simple pass on and are punished.

Proverbs 27:12 ¶ A prudent man foresees evil and hides himself; The simple pass on and are punished.

Every road leads to it’s destination and there are signs along the way telling us where we are headed.

While I was serving in the military during the 70’s, I was trained, I passed the tests and took a job for about a year as a US Customs Agent, assigned to Ramstein Air Base in the Federal Republic of Germany or West Germany as it was known then. Many of the US and foreign military and civilians being transferred to that region of the world for either short or long term assignments, as well as shipments of all types of supplies, materials and goods came through this hub.

Seeing that I had some latent public speaking skills I was asked to take on an added responsibility of teaching an orientation class which was mandatory for all incoming personnel. It was my duty to put together and present a two day briefing which would help acclimate people to the specific laws, customs and culture of this theater of operation.

Since we were located in Germany and only a two or three hour autobahn drive from France, Austria, Switzerland, Belgium, Luxembourg and the Eastern Block countries, much of my briefing was aimed at helping people become familiar with traffic laws and able to identify road signs. This was before most of these countries or the US had fully adopted international signs.

It was also my responsibility to teach those who would be driving how to avoid disaster on the autobahn, especially in dense fog, black ice or ‘white outs’ and how to make a proper exit or best respond to an emergency while traveling the road at high speeds.

It was during this time in my life that Brenda and I were serving in a local European Baptist church as Sunday School teachers for the 5 year old class and I also taught the youth group on Wednesday nights. It was about then that I first realized the application of the scripture that:

“Signs are for unbelievers.”

1 Corinthians 14:22 (Pastor’s Paraphrase)

Since every road leads somewhere predictable and since each road is periodically dressed with signs telling where the road is leading, allow me to take this moment and give a briefing to those of us who will be driving along life’s high-speed highways, as to how we can recognize some signs and deal with upcoming exits and emergencies.

So without further ado I give you:

Four Signposts On The Road To Defeat

When I use the term defeat I am basically talking to the Christian about backsliding … this means getting farther away from God.

One gets farther from God when either God moves and we don’t … or when we move in a direction that God won’t.

1. No Personal Prayer or Bible Reading

* This will leave us to adopt the Gospel of self

* We will grow farther from God

> Physically:

Psalms 119:105 Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

> Mentally:

2 Corinthians 10

4 For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds,

5 casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ,

> Spiritually:

Romans 10:17 Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God.

> Emotionally:


22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,

23 Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.

Developing and maintaining an intimate relationship with God is mandatory if we are going to drive the road to success.

2. No Spiritual Covering

* We should not underestimate the safety and security of accountable relationships

* There is safety in the multitude of counselors

* Two are better than one … Ecclesiastes 4:9

> we should heed the kind correction of a friend

> faithful are the wounds of a friend … Proverbs 27:6

* Hebrews 13:7 & 17 tell us to

> Remember those who lead us in God’s ways

> Follow them

> Obey their leadership decisions

> Submit to their counsel and Godly wisdom

* This describes a pattern or accountability - spiritual covering

Proverbs 18:1 ¶ A man who isolates himself seeks his own desire; He rages against all wise judgment.

3. Becoming so close/familiar with another person that their sin no longer provokes us and our sin no longer provokes them to speak up with a kind correction.

* Especially those of the opposite sex

1 Corinthians 15:33 Do not be deceived: "Bad company corrupts good character."

> NIV says evil company corrupts good habits

> RSV says that bad company ruins good morals

> NEB says that bad company is the ruin of a good character

* Like iron sharpening iron Proverbs 27:17 (it can also dull)

* Even Righteous Lot was vexed by conversation 2 Peter 2:7

It is necessary that we not peacefully or passively co-exist with sin …

4. Believing That You Are Invincible

* The, “It can’t happen to me” syndrome

* Peter said “Be sober …” 1 Peter 5:8

* Paul said don’t let “satan get an advantage …” 2 Cor 2:11

Mark 14:29 Peter said to Him, "Even if all are made to stumble, yet I will not be."

* it can’t happen to me --- not me --- never me!

Mark 14:71 Then he (Peter) began to curse and swear, "I do not know this Man (Jesus) of whom you speak!"

Don’t be so foolish to think it can’t happen to you … we need to stay close to Jesus instead of following Him at a distance.

What is the remedy?

* Admit you are on the wrong road going the wrong way

> This is a real emergency - disaster is on it’s way

> Once you admit this … number two:

* You are at an exit right now - Exit right now!

* Commit to developing and maintaining:

> Intimacy with God through His word and prayer

> Accountability

> No peaceful co-existing with sinful patterns of life

> A humble dependence on God’s daily protection

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Our First Response

Our First Response


There is a difference between having a problem and being a problem.

No matter how bad things are, believe me, you can make them worse.

Later we will be reading from the book of 1 Chronicles 6 & 7

Key Scriptures: John 16 (NIV)

23 ¶ In that day you will no longer ask me anything. I tell you the truth, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.

24 Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.

Much of life is spent worrying about or preparing for what we will do in the event something bad happens.

From personal health, auto, home and life insurance to the evolving Department of Homeland Security in the United States;

From the role of the United States Security Council to the deployment of Scud Missiles in the Middle East;

From hurricane tracking airplanes in the Atlantic to Tsunami warning systems in the Southern Pacific

We, as a world, are constantly concerning ourselves with how to avoid trouble, or worse yet, what we can do to manage the situation when trouble comes.

There are guidelines and limits that restrict selling and even close down trading on the New York Stock Exchange if the stock market falls too far, too fast.

Airbags, seat belts, crash carts, carbon monoxide detectors, fire sprinklers, grain reserves, oil reserves, nuclear stockpiles, alert response aircraft, contingency plans, bomb shelters, storm shelters, homeless shelters and even pet shelters.

As a world society we are almost always consumed with plans and preparations concerning how we are going to respond to the next disaster that awaits us.

From earthquakes to volcanoes, from terrorist to anarchist, from floods to famines, from asteroids to hemorrhoids we have developed well thought out plans to handle every contingency.

I am not suggesting that we should not be prepared or be less prepared in fact I am suggesting that we be even more prepared to respond to trouble, tragedy and the tests of life which come our way.

Preparedness --- having a plan of action --- is a biblical concept.

What I am suggesting is that we make sure we do not leave out the most important step when responding to emergencies, disasters, world troubles and even personal problems which we will certainly encounter in life‘s journey.

For this reason, allow me to read a passage which contains Holy instructions on the best First Response

2 Chronicles 7 (NIV)

12 ¶ The LORD appeared to him (Solomon) at night and said: "I have heard your prayer and have chosen this place for myself as a temple for sacrifices.

13 "When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command locusts to devour the land or send a plague among my people,

14 If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.

15 Now my eyes will be open and my ears attentive to the prayers offered in this place.

v.12 … “ I have heard your prayer …”, God told Solomon.

What prayer did Solomon pray? If we were to look at:

2 Chronicles 6:21ff we would find the prayer of Solomon:

21 Hear the supplications of your servant and of your people Israel when they pray towards this place. Hear from heaven, your dwelling-place; and when you hear, forgive.

22 "When a man wrongs his neighbour and is required to take an oath and he comes and swears the oath before your altar in this temple,

23 then hear from heaven and act. Judge between your servants, repaying the guilty by bringing down on his own head what he has done. Declare the innocent not guilty and so establish his innocence.

24 "When your people Israel have been defeated by an enemy because they have sinned against you and when they turn back and confess your name, praying and making supplication before you in this temple,

25 then hear from heaven and forgive the sin of your people Israel and bring them back to the land you gave to them and their fathers.

26 "When the heavens are shut up and there is no rain because your people have sinned against you, and when they pray towards this place and confess your name and turn from their sin because you have afflicted them,

27 then hear from heaven and forgive the sin of your servants, your people Israel. Teach them the right way to live, and send rain on the land that you gave your people for an inheritance.

28 "When famine or plague comes to the land, or blight or mildew, locusts or grasshoppers, or when enemies besiege them in any of their cities, whatever disaster or disease may come,

29 and when a prayer or plea is made by any of your people Israeleach one aware of his afflictions and pains, and spreading out his hands towards this temple

30 then hear from heaven, your dwelling-place. Forgive, and deal with each man according to all he does, since you know his heart (for you alone know the hearts of men),

31 so that they will fear you and walk in your ways all the time they live in the land that you gave our fathers.

32 "As for the foreigner who does not belong to your people Israel but has come from a distant land because of your great name and your mighty hand and your outstretched armwhen he comes and prays towards this temple,

33 then hear from heaven, your dwelling-place, and do whatever the foreigner asks of you, so that all the peoples of the earth may know your name and fear you, as do your own people Israel, and may know that this house that I have built bears your Name.

34 "When your people go to war against their enemies, wherever you send them, and when they pray to you towards this city you have chosen and the temple I have built for your Name,

35 then hear from heaven their prayer and their plea, and uphold their cause.

36 "When they sin against youfor there is no-one who does not sinand you become angry with them and give them over to the enemy, who takes them captive to a land far away or near;

37 and if they have a change of heart in the land where they are held captive, and repent and plead with you in the land of their captivity and say, We have sinned, we have done wrong and acted wickedly;

38 and if they turn back to you with all their heart and soul in the land of their captivity where they were taken, and pray towards the land that you gave their fathers, towards the city you have chosen and towards the temple that I have built for your Name;

39 then from heaven, your dwelling-place, hear their prayer and their pleas, and uphold their cause. And forgive your people, who have sinned against you.

40 "Now, my God, may your eyes be open and your ears attentive to the prayers offered in this place.

You see, when things go wrong, we have a place to go!

It’s the place of prayer!

Want to be prepared? then:

Be prepared to pray!

Prayer should be our first response to any trouble, personal problem or world calamity.

Note what 2 Chronicles 7:14 prescribes:

On our part … trouble demands our:

* Humility

* Petition

* Recognition

* Repentance

On God’s part … our prayer demands His:

* Attention

* Forgiveness

* Restoration

What Is Our First Approach To Prayer In The Time Of Trouble?

A Posture of Humility

Lets let Jesus paint this picture for us:

Matthew 6 (The Message)

5 ¶ "And when you come before God, dont turn that into a theatrical production either. All these people making a regular show out of their prayers, hoping for stardom! Do you think God sits in a box seat?

6 "Heres what I want you to do: Find a quiet, secluded place so you wont be tempted to role-play before God. Just be there as simply and honestly as you can manage. The focus will shift from you to God, and you will begin to sense his grace.

7 "The world is full of so-called prayer warriors who are prayer-ignorant. Theyre full of formulas and programs and advice, peddling techniques for getting what you want from God.

8 Dont fall for that nonsense. This is your Father you are dealing with, and he knows better than you what you need.

A humble, repentant petition based upon the recognition of Who God is.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

The Normal Christian Experience

The Normal Christian Experience


Key Scripture: Ephesians 5:1 ¶ Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children (NIV)

The Message: Ephesians 5:1 ¶ Watch what God does, and then you do it, like children who learn proper behavior from their parents.

If we ever hope to get bible results then we must begin to do bible things.

The New Testament is not just a historical book filled with stories about the founder of Christianity and the early Christian experience.

The New Testament is a living manual, the Word of God testifying, giving instruction and concrete examples for living the Christian life.

What we see as ‘Normal Christianity’ may not actually be normal, but rather ‘Nominal Christianity’. (Existing in name only)

What has often, through the ages, been referred to as Radical Christianity’ is actually more normal than the nominal Christianity we see today.

Webster’s Dictionary, depending on which edition you choose, defines radical as:

* Going to the root

* Getting back to the origin

* Back to basics

It is not considered a radical idea that the offspring could be as strong, intelligent and capable as its parents.

However, it is considered a radical thought, even heresy by some, to suggest that the children of God could be like their Heavenly Father.

And yet, we are admonished, even commanded by God’s own word, to participate in the transformation process which is designed to change us into the image of His Dear Son.

Is it too much that God would desire us to be more like Him and less like the devil? The least we could do is try:

Try to be more like our older brother, Jesus:

* To love even our enemies

* To forgive those who have hurt us

* To have compassion on those who are lost and lonely

* To give some of our time, talent and treasury in efforts to help somebody else and not just ‘us and ours‘.

* To be a happy and participating part of His family, set into the church as it pleases Him.

Enough of my soap box … actually you folks in our church are doing really well but we could all do better. We have a good example -

Let’s look at the first family experience Christians were introduced to when God decided to form The Local Church.

Acts 2 (NLT)

42 ¶ They joined with the other believers and devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, sharing in the Lord’s Supper and in prayer.

43 A deep sense of awe came over them all, and the apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders.

44 And all the believers met together constantly and shared everything they had.

45 They sold their possessions and shared the proceeds with those in need.

46 They worshiped together at the Temple each day, met in homes for the Lord’s Supper, and shared their meals with great joy and generosity—

47 all the while praising God and enjoying the goodwill of all the people. And each day the Lord added to their group those who were being saved.

Here we see the bible example of The Normal Christian Experience

These Christians were obviously changed by their faith. They appear:

* Unreserved

> They were joiners! Not isolated - not self protecting.

> Some people want to have God, they just don’t want God to have them.

> Some people who are married want to have a husband or wife or family, they just don’t want family to have them.

> Some people want to have a great church, but don’t realize that In order to have a great church, a church has to have great people.

* Devoted (When is the last time you actually heard that word?)

> To learning & living the Word

> Building Christian Relationships

* Friendly

> Proverbs 18:24 ¶ A man who has friends must himself be friendly

> We really do reap what we sow.

* Reverent

> Respectful & Healthily Afraid Not To Be

> Psalms 111:10 Reverence for the LORD is the foundation of true wisdom. The rewards of wisdom come to all who obey him. Praise his name forever! (NLT)

* Committed

> To God

> To Each Other

* Unselfish

* Charitable

* Disciplined

* Hospitable

* Joyful

* Generous

It is Normal Christianity to belong to a Local Church.

Normal Christianity has very little to do with how loud we shout, sing or pray in church.

Who we are when we think no one is watching, what we do when we believe no one will know, this is our true self.

Remember the 5 Laws of Life

1. What you say will be said

2. What you do will be found out

3. What you believe will be tested

4. What you compromise to keep you will lose

5. The journey is your friend

To become more like Christ will take our continued effort.

The person who does not want to be more like Jesus is most likely, in my pastoral opinion, not saved.

The person who wants to be but will not put forth the effort may be deceiving themselves, demonically influenced, carnally controlled or perhaps completely reprobate. If this is you, you should have yourself checked.

There is no one who truly wants to be and cannot become. Even though one may experience failures, disappointments and setbacks along the way, every person can grow to become a Normal Christian.

What happened to us and how we reacted to life yesterday can be blamed on anyone we want to blame - even Jesus who said that He would take the blame and bear our shame - but what we do with our tomorrows is squarely on our shoulders.

We can blame yesterday on anybody we want but tomorrow it’s on us.

Let’s decide to read the bible and live a Normal Christian life.

Monday, May 9, 2005

Mother's Day

Mother’s Day


Today is our national attempt to keep one of the 10 commandments.

Specifically commandment number five, initially found in Exodus 20:12, describing how each of us should treat our mother.

Our main reading today will be come from the book of Ephesians, Chapter 5

But first, before we go there, allow me to elaborate on a few key scriptures concerning the topic of this special day.

Allow me to address these key scriptures to the various members who make up the family unit, of which mothers are the foundation.

So, here are a few words about mothers:

First to the children here, of which each of us are!

I. Children, Honor Your Mother

Deuteronomy 5:16 "‘Honor your father and mother, as the LORD your God commanded you. Then you will live a long, full life in the land the LORD your God will give you.

A. She carried you nearly nine months without once putting you down or letting you down.

1. Don’t ever put her down!

2. Never let her down again!

B. If we do this, we are promised a live a long, full and blessed life.

* So children, and remember, all of us are some mother‘s child … lets give honor to our mother as unto the Lord our God. Never be ugly or disrespectful to her or to her memory, condescending, threatening, critical, judgmental, neglectful or abusive. If you do, you will be cutting your life and blessings short and disappointing God.

Next a word to husbands

II. Husband, Don’t Be A Jerk - translated - Don’t Be Ungodly

Leviticus 24

10 ¶ One day a man who had an Israelite mother and an Egyptian father got into a fight with one of the Israelite men.

11 During the fight, this son of an Israelite woman blasphemed the LORD’s name. So the man was brought to Moses for judgment. His mother’s name was Shelomith. She was the daughter of Dibri of the tribe of Dan.

A. Meanings translated from Hebrew

1. Shelomith - ‘Peaceful’

2. Dibri - ‘My Word’

3. Egyptian - ‘Double Straits’

B. A peaceful woman of the word married to a man living between two pressures, raising a confused son who easily fits into both worlds.

1. He loved the things of God, i.e. Shelomith

2. He also loved the things of this world, represented by Egypt.

C. Husbands, don’t be this double minded man

1. Be consistent for your wife‘s sake (James 1:8)

2. Be disciplined for your children’s sake

Colossians 3:21 Fathers, don’t aggravate your children. If you do, they will become discouraged and quit trying.

3. Be Godly for your sake (Matthew 18:6 - millstone)

D. What happened to her son, he was stoned to death due to his evident disrespect for God.

Finally, A word to mothers

III. Exodus 2

1 ¶ During this time, a man and woman from the tribe of Levi got married.

2 The woman became pregnant and gave birth to a son. She saw what a beautiful baby he was and kept him hidden for three months.

3 But when she could no longer hide him, she got a little basket made of papyrus reeds and waterproofed it with tar and pitch. She put the baby in the basket and laid it among the reeds along the edge of the Nile River.

A. Do all you can do and then, trust God with your children

* Moses’ mother, when she could no longer control the circumstances and hold her son back any longer, she let her child ride beyond her reach and trusted God with his safety and future

B. Live the example God needs you to

1. Respect your husband - just as children are told to honor parents, wives are admonished to set the example by showing a pattern of honor and respect for authority in the home.

2. Not only can children learn worldly ways from a worldly father, but also they will learn dishonorable ways from a disrespectful or indiscreet mother.

IV. Conclusion

Ephesians 5 (NLT)

31 As the Scriptures say, "A man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one."

32 This is a great mystery, but it is an illustration of the way Christ and the church are one.

33 So again I say, each man must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.

6:1 ¶ Children, obey your parents because you belong to the Lord, for this is the right thing to do.

2 "Honor your father and mother." This is the first of the Ten Commandments that ends with a promise.

3 And this is the promise: If you honor your father and mother, "you will live a long life, full of blessing."

4 And now a word to you fathers. Don’t make your children angry by the way you treat them. Rather, bring them up with the discipline and instruction approved by the Lord.

Pray blessings on mothers and mothers to be.