Saturday, July 23, 2011

You Said What?

by Tim Howard

I made some comments the other day, which caused a host of problems. I regretted the words spoken, but it was too late! It was like writing an e-mail to someone and then pressing that dreaded ‘send’ button without proofreading the text. You can’t take it back, it’s already gone and all you can do is wait to see what happens.

The fiasco I created reminded me of the truth found in James 3:2-6: “We all make many mistakes, but those who control their tongues can also control themselves in every other way. We can make a large horse turn around and go wherever we want by means of a small bit in its mouth. And a tiny rudder makes a huge ship turn wherever the pilot wants it to go, even though the winds are strong. So also, the tongue is a small thing, but what enormous damage it can do. A tiny spark can set a great forest on fire. And the tongue is a flame of fire…” NLT.

A careless or wrongly placed word out of your mouth can do that! By our speech we can ruin the world, turn harmony to chaos, throw mud on a reputation and send the whole world up in smoke because we started a fire that comes from the pit of hell.

This is a bit scary wouldn’t you say? You can tame a tiger, but you can't tame a tongue—it's never been done. The tongue runs wild. With our tongues we bless God our Father and then with the same tongues we curse the very men and women He made in His image. Curses and blessings out of the same mouth! WOW! This shouldn’t be happening.

Back in the day, a comedian named, Flip Wilson, often said: “What you see is what you get.” It’s also accurate to say: “What you say is what you get.”

What you say has the authority to open doors for tomorrow’s troubles or triumphs! Many people have been influenced and swayed throughout history both positively and negatively by the use of words. There is a tremendous force released when you speak! The words you declare actually have the power to produce an atmosphere of life for people to enjoy or create a morbid gloom that results in death. Proverbs 18:21 makes this truth verifiable.

The Israelites witnessed this fact in the Old Testament when the twelve spies returned from a reconnaissance. Ten of them gave a bad report while the other two remained true to what God had told them and spoke His words to the people. The results were devastating. A whole generation missed out on their inheritance because they listened to the words of the majority. As in this case, we often discover the majority isn’t always right.

It’s no wonder David said in Psalms 141:3 “Set a guard over my mouth Oh Lord and keep watch over the door of my lips”. Or why James said in chapter 1 of his book “My dear brothers and sisters be quick to listen and slow to speak…”

If your mouth has gotten you into trouble in the past, you might want to try to be more like David and ask God to put a filtering system on your tongue because only He can tame it. And try to listen more and talk less - or at least think more before you speak. It just might guard you from those loose-lipped comments that can cause a fiasco.

Saturday, July 16, 2011


by Andrew Cromwell

Each one of us has a powerful God-given ability. But more often than not we fail to realize the great gift that is resident
within each of us. We have the power to see people and situations through the lenses of possibility and potential. We can look beyond their limitations and failures, through the imperfections of the present, and see through eyes of faith.

Eyes of faith give color to what can be a drab, gray world. And it is because this world is often disappointing and reminds us of all the things we cannot do, that eyes of faith are so important. No one need remind us of what we have not done or of what we have tried and failed. We don’t need someone to remind us about our limitations—our lack of education, our relationship screw-ups, our failed attempts at moving forward—we need no help remembering these.

What we need is not a reminder of our failures but of our possibilities. We need someone who will choose to look at us with eyes that see potential. A parent who sees his children and chooses to look beyond the limitations of their age or experience and sees instead the hidden spark. A husband that sees his wife’s true potential hidden under the layers of disappointment that life has placed upon her.

But it is not enough to just see that possibility is present, we have to go one step further. We must call it out. We have to speak into the person’s heart and inspire them to step forward into a new future. Left to ourselves, we often cannot see what others can see. But when someone comes along and says, “You can do it”, we are suddenly lifted on their shoulders to see what we once could not.

What incredible power we have to lift people beyond where they currently are and give them a glimpse into another, better future! Philippians 4:13 says, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” When we help people move beyond what they can do in their own strength and encourage them to step into the strength of the One who makes all things possible, then we have stepped into a new dimension—the dimension of God-possibility.

So what type of person are you? Are you the kind that only sees the failures of the past, or do you see the possibilities of the future? Will you choose to look at your life and the lives of others through your own eyes or through the eyes of Christ? The world will be a better place if you do the latter.

The pastors in Kings County would love to help you see the world through eyes of possibility. Why don’t you give them a chance this weekend to encourage you and your family?

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Take Out The Trash

by Tim Howard

Recently while talking to a doctor friend about some physical challenges, we began to discus some of the systems in the human body which enable people to live a full life. It was fascinating to hear him share insights into the Digestive System, Respiratory and Circulatory System, Musculoskeletal System and Nervous System. He went on to explain the excretory system It is one of several major body systems designed by God to regulate the volume and molecular and ionic constitution of internal body fluids and eliminates metabolic waste products from the internal environment - In simplified terms, the human excretory system functions to remove waste from the human body. This system may be less glamorous when compared to others yet it too is absolutely necessary.

Don’t laugh! We all have waste. Every household has trash that needs to be removed and that’s true for our personal lives as well.

We all have some garbage laying around due to unhealed hurts, disappointments, painful memories, wounds, broken promises, broken hearts, unmet needs and unresolved issues. If we don’t have a systematic way to dispose of these items, problems tend to grow, emotional sickness often develops and Spiritual growth can be stifled.

Simply stated; life stinks when you don’t remove your trash. The system necessary to experience cleansing is revealed in 1 John 1:9. It says: “…if we confess our sins to God, he is faithful and just to forgive us and to cleanse us from every wrong.”

When you confess your hurt, your needs, your sin, you bring it into the open. You quit hiding and admit to what’s really going on. You choose to reveal it rather than conceal it. In doing so, you experience forgiveness from God, a cleansing from the stench and a brand new start. In the same way you take your waste container to the curb on the proper day of the week so the waste management department can take it away, we are to bring our contaminants to God. Once a year Kings County gives each homeowner a free trip to the Kings Waste & Recycling Plant but God gives you free access to Himself each and every day.

What needs to be disposed of in your life? What have you been holding on to that is holding you back? Is there any hurt that is in need of forgiveness? Is there a painful memory in need of healing? Why not take out the trash?

The cross is the place where Jesus died for you. He dealt with your personal failures, sins, weaknesses and trash of all types. The cross is the place where sins are forgiven. The cross is the place where you can exchange the old for the new. The cross is the place where you can confess without the fear of being criticized or attacked. God can deal with your garbage! So take your trash to Him.

Why not visit one of the many Church families this weekend in Kings County. They would love to help you experience the forgiving, cleansing, healing and restoring power of Jesus Christ.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Capital "A" Confession

by Kim Hogue

Maybe it’s because I regularly talk with Christ-followers and not-Christ-followers that live condemned or ashamed. Maybe it’s because a recent conversation caused my deeper reflection on confession and my Catholic roots.

But one confession still comes to my mind today; I remember a time when I was a little girl, 9 yrs. old, with six children in our family and one working parent. There were not a lot of frills, but mom had one prized possession, her dining room table. It was a special table to her and to us. I think it was special because of the way it was treated. We were always careful pulling the chairs out making sure not to drag the legs across the floor, everyone had their own place around it, and extra attention was given to every setting, everything in its proper place. Sitting around that table was almost magical, the talk of everyone’s day and the laughter shared around that table are forever etched in my fondest memories.

But one day something happened to that table. My mother was setting all its places when she found a very large capital “A” carved in to its dark, polished wood. I remember being lined-up like all the children from the movie “Sound of Music” and Captain VonTrapp (my mother) wanted to know who the culprit was! No one fessed-up, can’t say I blame them, the death penalty seemed imminent!

Forward two years later, I’m 11 yrs. old, our youngest sister Colleen is 7 and making her first confession. She enters the little booth, pulls the curtain shut and begins in strangely enough, a very loud voice, I mean she is loud! Everyone in the church can hear her! She starts in the Catholic way, “Bless me Father for I have sinned, aloooong time ago I carved a capital “A” in my mom’s table!” It was out! We finally knew who the woodcarver was! My mother’s knuckles turned white clenching the pew in front of us. Me and my other sister Kelly, barely manage to keep our laughter from filling the high ceilings of the church. Mom gives us “the look” and then says, “don’t you dare tell your sister we know!” I can still see their faces, I remember the look of relief on my little sisters face as she exited the confessional, the weight of her deed lifted and the look on mom’s face, was one of my first pictures of grace. To our amazement mom never said a word. So? How much more is our Father God willing and desirous to forgive us?

Who do you need to forgive? What do you need to confess?

1John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.