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Monthly Archives: November 2011

Built To Last

As we approach Thanksgiving, I wanted to take the time to first say thank you to those who faithfully read my blog.  I pray that you are being blessed.

This morning I received news regarding a young colleague in ministry that passed away last night.  It was unexpected and right before Thanksgiving.  Now, his wife and two children are left without a pastor, a husband, and a father.  As disturbing as that news was, even more saddening was the fact that when he’d gotten sick, his family, friends, and associates were no where to be found.  Can you imagine alone in his darkest hour and hardly no one to comfort his family in their time of need. His wife was alone in the hospital for these last two agonizing days. Now left to plan funeral arrangements during a time of the year when friends and family should be eating, and celebrating one another.  The question could be asked where was his family, the hosts of brothers and sisters, or where were his friends?

Hearing of someone’s death can cause you to begin to reflect about yourself and your own life…you know the what ifs?  Hearing the news made me begin to evaluate my relationships in life.  Today people don’t value relationships as they used to.  As a matter of fact marriages, friendships, and relationships are so volatile that we just throw people away and move on to the next as if it were just something disposable.  There are so many things today that are disposable. They are built to be temporary, here today gone tomorrow. With so many things created to pass away it is no wonder that we rarely think of anything as permanent any more. We have created a throw away culture, that allows us to always think in the here and now, but never for the long term or lasting. From relationships, to furniture, to cell phones, razors everything is disposable or at the very least upgradeable.

That is why when we find something that is truly built to last we are so impressed, if we recognize it. Wisdom is a house hewn out of seven pillars. When something is hewn, it is constructed out of a single piece that is chiseled and formed through rough blows. It is not a pretty process, but it is one that creates a piece that is solid, has integrity, and can’t be easily moved or discarded. This is the process of gaining wisdom. Wisdom is one piece that over time has been chiseled, and now forms a permanent singular piece.  This wisdom is just like our relationships…they are built through a process of good and bad, but nevertheless they must be solid.

Today, take a good look at what relationships are disposable and what is permanent in your life. Is most of your life, your relationships, and friendships made of throw-away materials or are you building a life that is hewn of something sold. There will come a time when living will certainly test you and those around you. It will examine the very essence of your being and character. At that moment, what your relationships and life are made of will be revealed. Take the time out to build your life, your ministry, your relationship out of solid materials. It may not always be pretty, but you will be built to last.

Building to Last,
Pastor Derrick Phillips

Prayer:
Father, as we enter this holiday season, I pray for families, relationships, and friendships to be restored in a Godly fashion according to your will.  I pray for the reader today who may be dealing with situations in life where everything around them has been disposable and now they feel in this season as if they have nothing to show for it.  I pray a special blessing upon them, and help them to build to last.  Thank you for all the many wonderful things that are taking place in our lives.  In Jesus’ Name.  Amen!

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Posted by on November 23, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

If You Think…You WILL!

 Proverbs 30:1, “The sayings of Agur son of Jakeh-an inspired utterance. The man’s utterance to Ithiel: “I am weary, God, but I can prevail.”

If You Think You Can…. You Will

Stories can often be an effective way to teach very powerful life lessons.  As a matter of fact, during Jesus’ ministry, one of his most used preaching techniques was the use of parables or stories.  Stories have a way of creating vivid imagery that registers with our mind to help us understand a concept.  Most of us can still remember nursery rhymes and stories we learned as a child. From Dr. Seuss, to Disney we have learned that hard work pays off, the value of friends,  bravery is a good thing, and to never trust a witch in the forest all from the stories of our youth. These stories while often simple are the bedrock of childhood and shape the memories that many have of their early years. One of the ones that has always stuck with me was, The Little Engine That Could.

The story of the Little Engine that could is about a small engine that did more than people thought he could simply because he thought he could. What we often miss in the children’s stories are how those lessons are applied to adult situations. Often we think we can do things, but from time to time we forget that things are not always easy. The mind may be willing but the body weak, and sometimes the body is strong but the mind has had enough. It is in those times that we have to remember the end.  Even though we are tired and weary with God we can prevail.  As the scripture in Proverbs 30 says, though I am weary, I can prevail.

It is not abnormal or abstract to feel mentally exhausted.  But the next time you get to the point that the road looks longer than your strength, just think you can. Push a little further and a little harder.  For Provebers 23:7a says, “As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he.”  Your thinking is directly connected to who and what you embody! Thinking that you can will give you the strength, resolve and fortitude to go on in spite of how the road looks. The truth of the matter is it will usually be harder than you think just don’t give up. So when you look at the road ahead and your already tired, all you have to know is, I am weary God, but I will prevail.

I Think I Can …Therefore I WILL!
Pastor Derrick Phillips

Prayer:
Father, I pray for every reader today, that you will enlighten the eyes of their mind to not think but also see!  I pray for every person that is weary today, that is downtrodden, and that has been utterly cast down…let them think themselves into a new mindset, a new attitude, and a new position in you!  We thank you for the shift from failure to success!  In Jesus’ Name. Amen!

 
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Posted by on November 17, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

Follow the Leader

I am so happy to report that our church is about two months old now, and I cannot tell you how rewarding and fulfilling it is to see the lives of God’s people being transformed, impacted, touched, and healed by the power of His Word!  And guess what? God is doing it and we are experiencing healthy growth!  I wish I could take the credit and say that it was because I am such an excellent and inspiring orator or that I have all of the church systems in place.  It’s amazing, that God uses me and other imperfect people with all of our flaws, shortcomings, and mistakes to help bring others to know Christ.   So, thinking about the last two months, made me think about the people who look to me as their spiritual leader for guidance, prayer, and counsel.  Being a leader is not a task one should take lightly.  Within the social context of this generation, everybody wants to be followed….everyone wants to have a voice… For instance, on twitter, everyone wants people to follow them, as it gives their voice a platform to express their views and opinions about life.  When I was young, we used to always play a game called, “Follow The Leader.”  In the game, we would emulate whatever the leader was doing in order to stay in the game.  The same goes in life, ultimately, what you emulate, believe, or express is a direct reflection of who you follow.  The Apostle Paul understood this when he wrote  in 1 Corinthians 11:1, “Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.”(NIV)

Many people dream of being in charge. We want to be the person that is calling the shots. We firmly believe that our team, division, company, church or even the world would be better off if we were running things. We know that we would do the right things, at the right times, in the right ways and would insure the right outcomes. All we need is a chance to show what we can do. So we anxiously await the chance to have some people follow us so that we can tell what to do so we can prove our mettle as leaders. Proverbs 14:28 says, “A growing population is a king’s glory, a prince without subjects has nothing.”(NLT)

What we often miss is that leading is not a matter of being put in charge but having a life that deserves being followed. Ask yourself, does my life deserve to be followed?  There are many people who have the title of leader who have only the followers who are instructed to follow them. By contrast there are those who have no title but a growing following that come by choice not command. Being in charge is never a function of position but a function of having people who will follow you regardless of position and trust your leadership.  It’s highly unlikely that people will follow if they do not trust their leaders.

Today lead from where you are. There are two types people who people will follow; those who they are instructed to follow and those who they want to follow. People will follow begrudgingly those who they are instructed to but they will willingly follow those who they want to follow. When you lead a life that shows wisdom and godliness people will decide to follow you on their own. You won’t need a position or a title you will be one who’s life invites people to follow. So don’t worry about being put in charge, just be someone worthy of being followed and you will be in charge.

Leading by Example,
Pastor Derrick Phillips

Prayer:
Father, I thank you for every reader today.  Strengthen them in the areas of leading and following.  I pray that you will bless the works of their hands and that  you would bring healing to every area of their lives.  In Jesus’ Name.  Amen!

 
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Posted by on November 16, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

God Is Looking For You

He will accept no compensation, nor will he be satisfied with a payoff of any size. Proverbs 6:35

Have you ever lost something that was of great value to you? It may not have been worth a lot to someone else but to us it was worth the world. That thing was of such great value to us that we were inconsolable when it came up missing. We were willing to look high and low so that we could find it. We wanted to retrace our steps, go to every place we remembered having it, and look under every rock until we found it. We were prepared to go to the end of the earth to get that special thing back into our possession. Replacing it was not an option, we wanted it back. No amount of money would be enough to replace that missing piece.

I say emphatically and 100% that, that is exactly how God feels about us. Especially when you’ve been estranged from the love of God and His healing presence, its hard to believe that God could be interested or preoccupied with you or where you are.  But he is!  I once had a conversation with a person who came from a family where everyone was Christians, and it seemed as if everyone was a pastor or a preacher in some form or fashion.  He felt that God wasn’t concerned about him because his family had thrown him away.  He felt that if his family couldn’t help him, then how could the God that they served? But how wrong could he have been!  You are so valuable to God that when man throws you away, God simply recycles us and turns one person’s trash into his treasure.  Psalms 17:8, the psalmist suggests that we are the apple of God’s eye!  Because of this, God is willing to go high and low, near and far just to find us when we are missing. Each and every one of us is special in God’s sight. When we go missing, God looks high and low until he find us again. Nobody else can replace you in God’s heart, and no sum of money is enough to get him to forget you. So remember that you are loved, and God cares when you go missing. Why not do him a favor and come home to him? to the house of God? He’s waiting on you right now.

Once was lost…now I’m found.
Pastor Derrick Phillips

Prayer:
Father, today I feel the need to pray for every person who is estranged from your love, your peace, and your compassion.  I pray that they will find the joy and peace that you only you can give.  Help us to come out of hiding so that not only you can stop looking for us, but that you can also recycle and restore us.  We thank you that we will be better for your glory and honor! Oh how we love you and we reverence you!  In Jesus’ Name.  Amen!

 

 
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Posted by on November 14, 2011 in Uncategorized