by Shari Stratton
I was a teenager when it started. An irrational, paralyzing fear that some kind of tragedy might be in my future — especially one that might suddenly take the life of someone close to me. My parents were needing to make a trip out of the country for a few days and my younger sister and I were going to stay home by ourselves. We had family nearby in case we needed anything and I remember feeling quite grown up and responsible. The night before they left, however, I became overwhelmed with a paralyzing fear that something would happen to keep my parents from coming home. At first, I tried to dismiss the thought, but then…what if this was a premonition of something bad about to happen? The more I thought about it, the more suffocating my fears became. I was sure that I would never see my parents again. What would become of me? How would I move on?
by Timothy L. Cooley, Sr.
Read Psalm 118:1-29.
Do you want to grow spiritually? If you’re reading this, you probably do. But how do we grow?
by Johnathan Arnold
Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson went on a camping trip. They lay down for the night and went to sleep. Some hours later, Holmes woke up and nudged his faithful friend: “Watson, look up at the sky and tell me what you see.” Watson said, “I see millions and millions of stars.” Sherlock asked, “And what does that tell you?”
After a minute or so, Watson explained, “Astronomically, it tells me that there are millions of galaxies and potentially billions of planets. Astrologically, I observe that Saturn is in Leo. Horologically, I deduce that the time is approximately a quarter past three in the morning. Theologically, I can see that God is all powerful and that we are small and insignificant. Meteorologically, I suspect that we will have a beautiful day today. Why, what does it tell you?”
Holmes was astounded, then said, “Watson, you idiot! Someone has stolen our tent!”
In our discussions about holiness—and especially entire sanctification—we can easily be lost in the minutia of theology while ignoring glaring spiritual problems in our lives. Inspecting a curious dollop of foam on the ocean’s surface is a fantastic way to forget we are swimming in shark-infested waters. Doctrinal precision is important and we should never treat someone with suspicion because of their questions; however, it’s always helpful to step back and ask ourselves a few big-picture questions:
Don’t be like Watson and miss the big picture.
by Rachel Plank
A letter of practical advice and encouragement for small churches and small church pastors.
by Johnathan Arnold
Unlike the apostles who shared the things they had seen and heard, my knowledge of revival is merely as a student of history who seeks to be taught and as a candidate for revival who needs to be humbled. While reading Leonard Ravenhill’s book Why Revival Tarries, I came across six points that are worthy to be shared and brought up-to-date with examples that will show their relevance. In our lethargic, lukewarm church age, when revival is so desperately needed, we are right to wonder why it tarries. Why has it been so long since we have seen a mighty move of God’s Spirit like those in the days of Edwards, Wesley, Whitefield, and Finney?
August 9-15: Belize, the installation service for Rev. Aaron Gillett was the highlight of the week. There were 95 in attendance from 7 different churches. The boy next door grows up, gets saved, goes to PVBI, gets married to Mary, and comes home to be the Pastor.
by Matt Maloyed
Advice for those publicly praying with others about a spiritual, physical, or emotional need.
by Darrel Stetler II
"Pastor.” The title may have lost some respect over the years due to high-profile scandals, Hollywood hit jobs, and TV caricatures. But the word still conjures up good things in many American minds. A 2011 study by Rasmussen says 70% of Americans view pastors favorably.
But pastors, through all of their healing, restoring, and guiding work, sometimes live with a lot secret pain. According to a survey by the New York Times in 2010, about 1,500 pastors per month leave the ministry due to burnout, conflict, or moral failure.
by Todd Arnold
October is Pastor Appreciation Month, a time to say a simple yet sincere and well-deserved thank you to your pastor and his family.
Perhaps your pastor is well paid and is provided with a nice parsonage. Nevertheless, "...the undeniable truth is that pulpits across America are filled with pastors who would leave the ministry tomorrow if they only had the opportunity to do so and could do it with some sense of dignity. Discouragement and disappointment constantly seek to suffocate their joy in ministry. Financial pressures, family pressures, and performance and expectation pressures, eventually take their toll over time. ...Satan is out to destroy your pastor. Just like it was with Simon Peter, Satan desires to sift them as wheat!" (Mark Cravens, LinkedIn, September 17, 2018)
by Timothy L. Cooley, Sr.
Eliakim stood peering into the distance from a tower high on the wall of the city of Jerusalem. For days he had been staring incredibly at the horizon. All his intelligence reporters kept telling him how the Assyrians were marching in from the north. They had marched from far to the east, from Nineveh along the Tigris River in what is now Iraq.
They attacked many cities on the way and decimated the countryside. Eliakim reflected with fear on the Assyrians’ cruelty to the people they conquered. How could this be happening? What would they do to Jerusalem? How could King Hezekiah protect the people? Would the Lord deliver them? They certainly needed a mighty miracle right now!
Assistant Editor, Content Strategist
Dr. Timothy Cooley, Sr.
Fact Checker, Accountability Editor