That’s Enough!

23 05 2017

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If you were to hang out with me and really get to know me, chances are very good you wouldn’t like what you see. Just this statement alone lifts God’s love and grace for us to a whole new level. Like it or not, we are all performers and we do our best to control the elements so that the script sheds a positive light upon our life’s work. But sooner or later we discover that this task in the long run is both impossible and a huge waste of our precious time. Dust happens on the lens and dirt stains the bright white outfits that we picked out so carefully to impress our audience. If we don’t look up to where our salvation truly arrives from, we will be stomped to death in the stampede of the failure we can’t avoid.

 Life this side of heaven might promise us an alluring paradise but there is no delivery service that can produce what we are diligently looking for. Escape is no real alternative as it only masks the inability to solve the problem on our own. Since we were young, everyone has been asking, ‘What will you do?” Today I have the guts to reply, “Who cares what I do if it only prohibits me from being authentic and coming clean?” I have experienced quite shockingly that God is not my ticket to ride; He is my only avenue of ever working it out. And yet even with my life totally surrendered to Him, I am not exempt from the drama and pain that come with breathing the air this earth has to offer. You can’t have it all if you won’t admit the good, bad and ugly that comes with it.

 I believe that Christianity has suffered from those who have exerted way too much energy in homogenizing it rather than preaching the heart and soul of it. The ‘Good News” of Jesus has nothing to do with promises of a better existence here. It doesn’t even guarantee easier times and never fail days! Followers of Jesus have physical deficiencies, emotional hang-ups, anxiety issues and terrible days that turn into adventurous seasons where God is not the way out but the only way in to making sense out of the misery and mining the golden nuggets from the cavernous caves we can’t avoid no matter how hard we may try. Faith must be willing to get its work clothes on. If there will be fruit growing in our garden, then there will be both the expectation of weeds and the understanding that the sin isn’t that they are there, but the ignorance of covering them without pulling them up.

 Believers shouldn’t be asking, “What am I doing wrong?” when nothing seems to be right. We should be looking for the Lord in all the right places! Healing is not just making blind eyes to see and lame legs to walk. Healing is also making blind eyes, in spite of the continuous and aggravating blindness, being able to blaze miraculous trails into the great unknown. It is living with the weakness and watching God still using you in remarkable fashion. No, it isn’t the way any of us would draw it up, but it still is divine intervention. If I wait until all is as it should be to write my psalm of worship, it might sit unfinished and unheard. So I sing with my blood boiling and I raise my hands in defiant revolution that this world can do me in. What profits a man if he gains the whole world but lose his own soul?

 It’s all about soul. It has very little to do with happiness. Jesus didn’t have a home to call his own and he was battered and beaten up by those who shared history with him. I don’t think the Lord would call his time with us a vacation, a trip, a holiday to the beach. I think he did what he had to do so that there would be endless hope in the cup we were given with predetermined holes. Faith believes what God says even when it is contradicted by what we see! When nothing can change my world, the Holy Spirit still redeems me! Even when we are not privileged to all that the Lord is doing behind the scenes, we are not abandoned in ignorance. He who began this good work will bring it to completion in his own way and time! I want to but must not put the book away. It’s too early to run and it’s too late to start all over again. Give us this day our daily bread and let us hold on to the promise that “Thine is the Kingdom, the Power and the Glory.” If it doesn’t belong to the Creator then the created go the route of anarchy and nobody wins.

 So on this quiet day where I can’t hear the music, I trust the songs of angels accompany me. I will join the choir again but not today and even if nobody around me understands, the God above surely does. And that’s enough. It must be. Let it be!





GO LOW TO FLY HIGH!

15 05 2017

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I wonder if there is anybody reading my Article today who has had to battle internal issues for a long period time. Maybe life feels like you are blatantly bleeding the best of your minutes away. You have made the appointments. You have spent the money. You have taken the medication. You have exhausted your human resources. And you believe your conclusion might be that there really is no human answer to your problem. All the Professionals, all of the Religious Counselors, all of the Experts, all of the Contacts and all of the Neighbors might agree with your diagnosis: You are stuck in the midst of an unfixable spot.

Is there an area of your life hemorrhaging today? Is there an unresolved issue that has been infected by the world? You’re aching, hurting, discouraged and depressed. You’ve spent tons of money and tried every remedy and you are still in need of a rescue because nothing on earth has helped! Nobody helps you because they can’t help you and when they have tried and you have allowed it; you’re still worse off and not an iota better at all!

 What good is going to the Doctor if you keep getting sicker? What good is going to Church, if God seems further away than ever? Maybe you are attempting to fix horizontally that which can only be cured vertically. Maybe your answer isn’t an outside in solution but an inside out conversion. Maybe the One you seek to lead you to the land of the living is already in your corner. Could it be that Jesus is right smack in the midst of what you are going through?

 Desperate times don’t really follow protocol. When you are struggling at the end of a rope, you aren’t worried about the color of the twine. We only major on the minors when the stakes are low. But when it comes to matters of life and death, we rarely are willing to play dice with diamonds. If we are down to a matter of minutes, why are we wasting precious time? If we want to be lifted up, we might just have to begin by going low. Comfort and ease are not what we need to please the surging hunger in our souls. If salvation is a possibility, then why would we not do whatever it would take to secure our rescue?

 When God’s will is ready to be done, earthly time is no longer an issue! A physical healing is not enough to regenerate a spiritually suffering soul. If we want to be truly free, we need to make sure that we are subjecting our wills to a source that has the ability to deliver what we yearn for. Holding on to God isn’t just about begging him to provide all the items on your shopping list. It is about surrendering what you think is best to the Lord who only does what he does with complete perfection.

In the Bible, Matthew tells us the story about a very troubled woman. She had heard about Jesus and with just about every ounce of hope she could muster, she risked whatever ounce of dignity she had left to go low so she might be lifted high. Matthew 9:20-22 reads, “Just then a woman who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years came up behind him and touched the edge of his cloak. 21 She said to herself, ‘If I only touch his cloak, I will be healed.’ 22 Jesus turned and saw her. ‘Take heart, daughter,’ he said, ‘your faith has healed you.’ And the woman was healed at that moment.” Matthew fills us in that this woman was so lonely and outcast that she took to talking to herself. The King James Bible translates her conversation like this: “If only I may touch the hem of His garment, I shall be made whole…”

Remember Matthew was writing primarily to the Jews. The Hebrews knew something about the hem of his garment. She didn’t say if I just touch him or get close to Him or accidentally bump into him I will get better. She said if I will touch the hem of His garment, I will be OK. On the four corners of a Jewish Robe, there should be four tassels. At the four hems of the garment there would be a tassel of blue like graduates wear. They were to remind the people of God’s word, God’s commands, God’s rule and God’s ways. Our woman was specific in saying, “If I can just grab one of the tassels of the Teacher, I can be healed!” The tassel would be hanging at the bottom of the outfit. The tassel would not be on the shoulder of God but at His feet! In order for her to grab a tassel, she had to get on her hands and knees to reach the tassel of truth. You have to humble yourself to have any chance of grasping God’s word!

 If you are still proud and refuse to get on your knees, you will probably die on your feet because of your selfishness. If you will go low, you are ready to aim high! If you will shut your mouth and receive God’s word then there is always hope! Jewish Men wore the tassels so they wouldn’t be tempted to trust and lean to their own understanding. If you long to walk in God’s way with his word as a light to your path and a lamp to your feet, you must evaluate all of your circumstances through the grid of God’s truth!

 If you have some issues going on and it’s been going on for far too long, have you grabbed for the written word from the living word? Or are you setting your reputation on the clamoring chaos from the crushing crowd? The crowd pressed in to try to squash Jesus.

The Woman went low to worship Him in the midst of the clatter and clutter. If you have the written word with no Jesus, you have truth but no life. You have information without inspiration. If you have Jesus but have not hunkered down in His word, you have life with no truth. But with the Word of God combined with the Word from God, you have everything you could possibly need and more. This woman who had no way, grabbed the Truth and experienced Life! Your freedom today depends upon your dependence tomorrow totally upon what Jesus says. Go low and secure your place upon Heaven’s heights. It’s your move!





Repentance Is Not A Curse Word!

8 05 2017

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Repentance is not a popular word in today’s culture. Not only is it avoided in social contexts, there are many churches that won’t talk about it either. Repentance doesn’t evoke good feelings and positive vibes. It brings people down and makes them feel bad. Sometimes feeling uncomfortable might just save your life. Isn’t it always that an abnormal pain in the body makes one realize that they might just have to go and see a Doctor? Rarely does somebody pull into Urgent Care while they are walking on sunshine. God has wired the very same mechanism within the spirit to alert a heart that there is poison in the midst of the soul. If we don’t acknowledge the sin head on, it just may very well do us in.

 Repent means to make a conscious decision to change your direction. If you are trying to drive to Florida on Route 80 West, you might think that you are rocking down the highway in record time, but unless you turn your car around, you won’t be seeing Orlando any time soon. Pride is such a common occurrence. Correction is the necessity of perfection but if we aren’t open to instruction, we will be shut out of the proper education.

 Why is it so hard to admit that we have all blown it here on earth when it comes to conforming to the ranks of heaven? Why do we prefer playing charades rather than submitting to a thorough makeover of the mind? If we aren’t teachable then we become gullible to the fib that we are much better people than we really are. The Bible has declared in the Book of Romans that there is nobody righteous enough to make it without some divine assistance. God has provided all the salvation we need in his Son Jesus. When we recognize our utter dependence upon the finished work of Christ upon that cross that he died upon on Calvary, we confess loud and clear that mankind is incapable of redeeming itself. From the time we were little we have kept trying to prove that we can do it all by ourselves. The earlier we grow out of that phase, the sooner we will grow up into a spiritual maturity that knows that God works best within our weakness.

 Humanity is just plain goofy on its own. The fact that God still reaches out to such a fickle crowd should be encouraging enough to run to the Lord in a tailspin. But there we go doing our own thing to try to capture a thrill and give meaning to our lives. A few years back, “ABC Evening News” reported on an unusual work of modern art-a chair affixed to a shotgun. It was to be viewed by sitting in the chair and looking directly into the gun barrel. The gun was loaded and set on a timer to fire at an undetermined moment within the next hundred years. The amazing thing was that people waited in lines to sit and stare into the shell’s path! They all knew that the gun could go off at point-blank range at any moment, but they were gambling that the fatal blast wouldn’t happen during their minute in the chair.

Yes, it was foolhardy, yet many people who wouldn’t dream of sitting in that chair live a lifetime gambling that they can get away with the sin they are stubbornly stuck within. Awkwardly and in ridiculous fashion, they continue to ignore the risk until the inevitable self-destruction comes crashing down upon them like a piano pushed off the roof. If only we would come clean and sign on the dotted line that we need a little heart surgery, the Holy Spirit would be allowed to remove the clogs and allow the life to flow through us all again.

 If we want to be raised up, we need to fall down at the feet of Jesus. If we want to be set free, we must pledge dependence upon the Savior. If we want to get to heaven, we must turn around and stop hiking on the highway to hell. Repentance is as simple as a U-Turn. Repentance is an awakening from being stupid. Sin is ignorance in stereo. A man walked into a convenience store, put a $20 bill on the counter, and asked for change. When the clerk opened the cash drawer, the man pulled a gun and demanded all the cash in the register, which the clerk promptly provided. The man grabbed the cash from the clerk and fled—leaving the $20 bill on the counter. The total amount of cash he got from the drawer? Fifteen dollars! Our bulbs are just not that bright with the light that God provides.

 Maybe today the smartest thing you can do is to practice your Alphabet. A:  Ask God to help you identify any inappropriate relationship with the world in your life. B:  Be proactive in making sure that the wrong kinds of affections don’t steal the right kind of love. C:   Commit your heart to the Lord anew, here and now! If on your journey, you don’t see Jesus at the end of the road you are walking, it is time to turn around and find the Lord so you may follow him. Your future depends upon it!





POSTABLES COME TO WILDWOOD!

1 05 2017

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Life was meant to be lived within the realm of community. Connection doesn’t happen by just sharing space physically within a room. For relationships to be able to bloom and blossom, protective heart guards must be willing to fall, and souls must be engaged and the best of your time must be invested. In a day where our society is always expecting instant gratification and settling for a surface satisfaction that doesn’t dive very deep, I don’t believe that many know what they are missing when it comes to true fellowship.

 I have always treated people as if we have known each other forever. I know that can be quite overwhelming to those with reserved personalities but it is all I know. Family comes easy for me. I grew up within a home where my Parents had seven children of their own of which I am their oldest and then adopted thirty more children. So being surrounded by a crowd of siblings is second nature. As a matter of fact, I am not very good as a solo act. God called me to be a Pastor. Genuinely loving people was a gift the Lord gave to me. So I am honored and grateful when others return the favor. It makes me feel like the richest guy in town.

 As many of you know, I am a big Fan of the Hallmark Channel. I adore the Signed Sealed and Delivered Series on the Movies and Mystery Network. Martha Williamson who created Touched By An Angel is the creative genius here too. Those who follow the Program are affectionately known as The #POstables. It pays tribute to the four amazing characters who work in the Dead Letter Office of the Denver Branch as they reunite lost mail with the originally intended receivers. I have had Kristin Booth and Crystal Lowe, two of its biggest stars on my Radio Show. I have also gotten to know so many wonderful Fans on Twitter. We all tweet together as we watch the latest SSD Movie. It is like we are one big happy family.

 This past weekend, five #POstables from different parts of the country drove all the way to Wildwood to come and visit The Lighthouse Church and the 106.3 The Shore Radio Station. Terri and I were delighted and blessed to welcome with open arms Joy from Pennsylvania, Sandy from Virginia, Judy from Ohio, and Marybeth and Ann from Michigan. We met in our beloved New Jersey for a wonderful gathering where we made some lasting memories all together. Even though we had never met face to face before, it took no time at all for all of us to feel like we had been family forever. Faith, love and a common passion can do that when we are willing to step out of our comfort zones and give God room. The Ladies got their fill of Jersey Pizza, beautiful sunshine and the sweet love of Jesus. I interviewed each and every one for my Radio Show. You will want to be listening to hear the magic made in the studio. I love our Signed Sealed Delivered Family.

 Before the weekend was over, we were talking about our hopes and dreams that maybe we could put together a nation wide POstables Gathering with the cast of the show joining us. We could do it in Vancouver, Canada where they actually film the show or it could all come to Wildwood. My point is that none of this would have happened without random people reaching out to one another and taking a chance of going deeper than just the 140 characters in a tweet.

 If you would like to learn more about Signed Sealed Delivered, the #POstables, then let me suggest you start by reading the wonderful blog written by a talented young lady named Chandel Charles. It is called Alameda and Downing and it is always and only about all things Signed, Sealed, Delivered. She calls it her special project forwarded with much love to all the fellow #POstables. It is updated almost daily with news and the latest information about the show. Who knows? You might want too be part of the next #POstables gathering right here in your own back yard.

 In a cynical world that has become too paranoid and politically correct, God still has the real deals out there and it is still true that no man is an island and we all do best in a communal setting rather than hiding out in cozy cubicles. Use discernment but have faith. We are all living letters that are at our best when we are shared with one another. I pray many new and wonderful contacts in your days to come. I guarantee you that God will put his stamp of approval upon it all. It is now up to you to deliver the letter, the sooner the better!





WHO ARE YOU FOLLOWING???

24 04 2017

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Has anybody ever taught you to do something that you always had an interest in but needed another’s expertise to make it happen? What kind of student were you? Did you learn best via reading books and being tested in a classroom setting or did your awakening happen better in the midst of just doing it with your mentor amidst the laboratory of everyday life? I may be preaching and teaching the congregation faithfully at the Lighthouse Church on Sundays, but I long to know if any of the lessons being taught are actually being caught as they are lived out the rest of the week.

Application is even more important that just dishing out information. I want the flock to be inspired but also fired up to live what they are being called by God to accomplish. To know and not do is never remaining true to the purpose of a human being created by God.

 I have come to know through the years and not always via the easiest of methods that if you ever want to learn how to go in the right direction; you best be sure that you have chosen the right leader to follow. I took my son Joel to Citi Field last weekend and while driving in Queens, New York, I was reminded of one of my favorite Dad and me stories. Dad was driving as we were leaving Shea Stadium after watching the Mets beat the Padres in an exciting doubleheader. Those of you who know me understand that I have always been geographically challenged so I was no good to my Father even back then and before you know it, we got lost. We tried to stop for directions, but the people we asked ended up arguing among each other about which way to go. It was quite hilarious. As we pulled away, my Dad noticed the car in front of us had a New Jersey License Plate so he figured that at the very least, he’d get us back to the Garden State. That is until we ended up in Connecticut. Who knew the Jersey car had relatives out of state. We eventually got home in the wee small hours of the morning. It reminded me that you can’t assume that just by following the guy or gal in front of you, you will end up in the place you want to go!   

 When it comes to faith and living the Christian life, it is not the issue of simply what you do, but far more it comes down to who and what you are. When someone becomes a Christian, older Believers tend to say, “Now that you’re a Christian you need to read the Bible and you need to pray and you need to go to church and you need to talk about Jesus to others.” That’s right and that’s true; but it is all still one step removed from the real issue because it is external and not internal enough. The New Testament actually teaches that now you’re a Christian and now that you know who you are- here is what God wants you to do, and these pages major on the inner heart and the inward graces. The worthy walk of a true disciple must begin with steps taken from the heart.

 Life is lived in 24 hour increments! This is the day the Lord has made and if we are going to obey him and rejoice in it, then we best check in with what he wants us to do. When was the last time you began your morning with a prayer like this, “Dear Lord, what do you want us to do today? Where do you want me to go? By walking in the steps of the Master, you not only end up doing what Jesus did; you also do it where Jesus did it just like he said you would do it and all along the way you are  learning to live life in total dependence upon God!

 Jesus could endure the negative circumstances. He could take all the stuff people had to dish out.

Jesus was totally in step with the Father and his step by step obedience would lead to humility which produced meekness, which produced patience, which produced holiness which produced love. I believe that this is the directives of discipleship. Following the Father in step with the Son by the power of the Holy Spirit leads to a fruitful field. And you know something? Let me just give you a little hint here, and it is when others see the footprints going to maturity, they are probably the most powerful testimony the church of Jesus Christ has. Maybe we don’t need more education; but more edification. Putting into training what we have already heard again and again and again and again!

 I’ll never forget Reinhold Niebuhr’s statement. He didn’t make too many good statements but he did make one that was interesting. He said, “The church was like Noah’s ark, if it weren’t for the storm outside you couldn’t stand the stink inside.” That’s a little strong and it’s an awful thing for somebody to have to say, but if the church just made it their priority to not just study Jesus but sincerely live with Jesus, then you know the world would sit up and take notice of us and our bringing others to Jesus would be happening more often than it is now.

 Mr. Stanley went to Africa in 1871 to find David Livingstone, he’d heard about him. He was infatuated with the man, he wanted to find him. He did find him, and it says in his little history that he spent several months in the company of David Livingstone, who by this time was an old man, and he said, “Livingstone never spoke to me about spiritual things.” Livingstone was busy doing what he was doing with Africans; Stanley was just hanging around observing.

 Throughout the months he watched the old man, and he said, Livingstone’s habits were beyond my comprehension and the thing that amazed me most was his patience. He could not understand, says his biographer that Livingstone really had such patience and sympathy. For the sake of Christ and his gospel David Livingstone was patient, untiring, eager and literally spending himself, in fact he spent himself for His Master’s cause. This is what Stanley wrote in his journal, “When I saw that unwearied patience, that unflagging zeal, those enlightened sons of Africa, I became a Christian at his side though he never spoke to me one word.”  

 Isn’t that great? Sometimes you won’t have to say nearly as much if you just began to not only step into church on Sundays but be ready to step out as the church following Jesus by His Spirit on Mondays and following! Discipleship is a lot like training to run the race! Following in the footsteps of Jesus takes a holy zeal and it gives the watching world a chance to see faith that is real!





I’VE GOT THE MUSIC IN ME!

19 04 2017

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What can I say? Some Preachers play golf; while I play the classic hits of all time. God created me in such the way that I have a jukebox in my soul. You say some words and I sing a song the sentence triggers in me. It doesn’t take much. Every little phrase can result in more tunes than you might be able to handle. And I am not afraid to sing at the top of my lungs anytime and anywhere. But I’d rather have my favorite songs playing full blast in my heart than entertain a scary and soundless silence that for me could only result in a blank and lifeless stare from empty eyes.

 Music is amoral. This means it is neither good nor bad intrinsically on its own. I hate labels. I remember when I first began my Faith journey; some well-meaning Believers wanted to ban me from listening to the radio ever again. That was the “devil’s music,” they said. For the record, the devil isn’t that creative. His specialty is sabotaging the good and perfect gifts that come down from our God above. Just like a knife can be used to either slice bread or stab somebody in the back; so music is an avenue where we can choose to use it for good or allow it to be hijacked so that we end up in a pit of slime.

 Is it ok for Christians to celebrate love? I hope so because I surely do. Is God the author of romance? You bet he is. Jesus is the Lord of the dance. He is the author of the symphony of our everyday existence. The Book of Job 38:7 tells us that the angels sang as God created this world into being. Do you like to work with the music on? It’s no accident. You are being like the God who made you! There is a rhythm to every move we make. We are called to march to the beat of the drummer whether it is via conventional means or our own syncopated high stepping. I do know that I can’t do this thing called life without the proper soundtrack. Singing in the rain shouldn’t be an option as I know it is a must to keep your sanity. Offer God a blank piece of sheet music and let him compose the melody that was always meant for you.

 Starting this week, there is a new format on your FM Dial. Its call letters are WJSE and its position is 106.3 The Shore. It will feature the classic hits of the sixties through the eighties.  Going to the Beach and listening to your transistor go hand in hand. Basking in the rays and jamming to the tunes of summer always triggers a bunch of cherished memories of days gone by. What are some of your all-time favorites? Wildwood needs a station like this because this is where so many of these magical moments happened in the first place. Where there is a treasured remembrance, there is a special song that seals the deal. Now we have a gathering place where you can share your requests and we can provide the time machine to make it yesterday once more; at least for a little while again.

 I love being the Pastor of the Lighthouse Church. Serving God and loving our people brings me an immense amount of joy. But as a Minister, I don’t believe I should be cooped up in an office when I can be out in the community touching as many lives as the Lord allows me to. I will be the Mid-Day Host on 106.3 The Shore Mondays through Fridays from 10am until 3 pm. I look forward to laugh with you, cry with you and sing together with you all along the way. My show is something the whole family can enjoy together. I see it as another avenue to share the love of God with one another. I won’t be preaching on this station. Preaching is not the only way to pastor. Sometimes the best way I can show you how much I care is to try to fill your day with songs handpicked from my heart to make a difference in your world. Because music means so much to me, you can be sure that I take such a task as the priority that it is. I hope we will be able to connect with one another quite often in the days ahead. Even if you never get to The Lighthouse Church, through the medium of radio, I can come to you.

 I also host a daily inspirational show called My Lighthouse with Pastor Rudy that is heard on Praise FM 88.1 and 89.9 at 3PM daily and 7AM on Sunday and it is broadcast on Lift FM 97.9 7PM daily and Noon on Sundays. But one show is not more spiritual than another. Because I long to do whatever I do with all my heart, each program I host is my offering to God with the hope that he will bless you much because of what you hear.       

 So give me a call this week and let me play your favorite classic record. Let’s make it a regular date. Let’s help each other do more than just make it through another day grinding and grumbling but let’s sneak even a dance in here and there. You turn the radio on and let me do what I do best! I’ve got the music in me, but I am not content to let it stay locked up there. You shouldn’t be either! 

 





THE SIGNS OF EASTER!

10 04 2017

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It’s Easter week! Let me ask you some questions to ponder this Holiday week. Are you going to settle for a basket filled with chocolate bunnies, marshmallow peeps and an array of assorted jelly beans? Are you going to seek to find a treasure worth a little more than just multicolored eggs hidden in the yard? Do you desire a menu that is lots healthier than sharing a baked ham with family and friends, whom you may or may not be getting along with? Are you content to just adorn your outside body with a new suit, a sassy hat, and designer shoes while your heart remains naked and in rags? It’s Passion Week! Jesus modeled for us that without an internal purpose, we will be stuck in an external place that might very well forfeit an eternal presence with the God who created you to be with him.

What signs are you seeking this Resurrection Week? Do you know the marks that matter? Have you been clued in to ignore the motions of the crowd so that you can concentrate and obey the coach? I have loved baseball, played baseball, watched baseball and taught baseball for many years. One of the first things I go over with players so that we can all be on the same page is teaching the signs. People watching in the stands may see me going through series of physical gyrations; but if they don’t know what the signs stand for, they are clueless! The other team knows that we, as a team, have signals, but if they don’t know the specific indicator, they too, are in the dark about what I am communicating in the light, with my players. But my players, by having a personal relationship with me, should be able to translate what I am saying to them without using words. I gave them signs so that they don’t settle for a single, delight in just a double, or triumph by hitting a triple. Hit all the baseballs you want; but if my team never comes home—then winning becomes a hopeless pipe dream. Religion might get you to first base. Your good works might afford you a trip to second base. Maybe some outer effort could win you some time on third base. But, without knowing the signs of heaven, you are not coming home!

Please don’t give up on coming home this Easter! First is nice, second is OK, and third is a little better. But there is no place like home! Our Coach, the Lord Jesus, wants you to know the signs. Jesus isn’t just a good teacher, or a positive example. He did what He did on Good Friday and Easter Sunday so we could come home! He slugged the devil and death by knocking it out of the park for you and me! Players must fix their eyes on the manager’s hands. People must not ignore the Savior’s palms! What do you see when you look at the signs of our Savior? Nail scars are there to make you aware that He provided the power to get us off the bases! Some people look at Jesus, but miss the obvious! When He holds us His hands to us, palms up, it proves we are loved and we are wanted and we are able to score—to go home!

Good Friday Jesus held out his arms outstretched on the Cross to show us the width of His compassion and mercy. Easter Sunday was runs-batted-in day! He delivered us from dying on the field. He made the way for us to get back in the dug-out with Him to stay. When I see the signs on the hands and feet of Jesus, I see the scars He received for me. I see the distance He went to make you and I victorious! I see new life and a new identity.

What are you seeing in the signs this Easter? If you have nowhere else to worship this weekend, come by the Lighthouse Church so that you can learn the signs to get you home!
The Lighthouse has a Good Friday Service this Friday at 7PM. Easter Sunday Services are at 7AM, 9AM, and 10:45 AM. If you show up, the signs look real good that you’ll be looking up in no time this spring time for all time!