Monday, December 18, 2017

STRENGTH TO ENDURE PT.1

“It is never easy to endure pain or an uncomfortable situation. It seems easy to quit and avoid the pain but if you quit, you will suffer later. It is far better to endure the pain now and enjoy life later. Life is all about endurance.” – Lailah Gifty Akita

Endure: to go through something difficult without quitting Hebrews 10:32-39 Amplified Bible (AMP) But remember the earlier days, when, after being [spiritually] enlightened, you [patiently] endured a great conflict of sufferings,33 sometimes by being made a spectacle, publicly exposed to insults and distress, and sometimes by becoming companions with those who were so treated. 34 For you showed sympathy and deep concern for those who were imprisoned, and you joyfully accepted the [unjust] seizure of your belongings and the confiscation of your property, conscious of the fact that you have a better possession and a lasting one [prepared for you in heaven]. 35 Do not, therefore, fling away your [fearless] confidence, for it has a glorious and great reward. 36 For you have need of patient endurance [to bear up under difficult circumstances without compromising], so that when you have carried out the will of God, you may receive and enjoy to the full what is promised. Click here to Read More

SPIRITUALLY SPEAKING… SHOW OR SUBSTANCE (AND) YOU ARE?

I am told there is one sure way to absolutely get the devil’s attention and that is to begin to turn one’s life to Christ. You’ve probably heard many a pastor refer to a person’s lifestyle as an open invitation for Satan to gain access to their world. Supposedly, as long as you engage in the things and happenings of this world, Lucifer has no need to spend any energy dealing with the struggle for your soul. You see, life’s trials and temptations alone are enough to sentence any one of us to an afterlife void of the Lord, which, if you didn’t know it, is the quintessential definition of hell itself. A life without spiritual purpose, a life without spiritual guidance, a life without faith is a life wandering aimlessly on a toll way headed straight to hell. The devil does not need to work to gain access to this life. It is a conformed life. He can merely wait at the toll booth gate and collect unsuspecting souls on their way by. You remember when you partied so hard that even the next day didn’t completely clear up the stupor from the night before? I’m just humbly suggesting that maybe some of us could at least make the devil sweat just a little bit while he tries to manipulate your life’s circumstances. Click here to Read More

SPIRITUALLY SPEAKING… IN THE PRESENCE OF COURAGE, POWER CRUMBLES EVERY TIME

I have often thought, heard and to some degree concluded that Jesus, as was Paul, was killed because He dared to stand up and speak truth to power. He and many of His followers, convicted by their beliefs, professed and preached that the ruling religious law of the day, although large and in charge, was indeed corrupt and deserving of renunciation. In my office I have a poster which states, “One man with courage makes a majority.” Until recently, I had never associated this powerful statement with the life and death and life of Jesus Christ. But the courage of faith coupled with the commitment to act on that faith sometimes leaves you in the unenviable position of being alone. Have you ever found yourself so committed to a course of action, so positive in your convictions and your resolve, so steadfast in your purpose that nothing could change your mind or your behavior? Click here to Read More

STRENGTH TO ENDURE PT.2

“One has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws.” “Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.” “To sin by silence, when they should protest, makes cowards of men.” John F. Kennedy

Daniel 6:7-10 New International Version (NIV)

7 The royal administrators, prefects, satraps, advisers and governors have all agreed that the king should issue an edict and enforce the decree that anyone who prays to any god or human being during the next thirty days, except to you, Your Majesty, shall be thrown into the lions’ den. Now, Your Majesty, issue the decree and put it in writing so that it cannot be altered—in accordance with the law of the Medes and Persians, which cannot be repealed.” So King Darius put the decree in writing. 

10 Now when Daniel learned that the decree had been published, he went home to his upstairs room where the windows opened toward Jerusalem. Three times a day he got down on his knees and prayed, giving thanks to his God, just as he had done before.  Click here to Read More

STRENGTH TO ENDURE PT.3

“You are capable of more than you know. Choose a goal that seems right for you and strive to be the best, however hard the path. Aim high. Behave honorably. Prepare to be alone at times, and to endure failure. Persist! The world needs all you can give.” – E. O. Wilson

Forward Thinkers, daily I receive reports from people declaring, Pastor I’m tired, and the prayer requests continue to come in from people declaring they are stressed out by life and desiring to quit or throw in the towel. Forward Thinkers, many report it does not seem fair for them to have to carry such a heavy load in life.

Forward Thinkers, if that sounds like you, I encourage you to declare, Lord, give me the strength to endure. Click here to Read More

Bishop Calvin Barlow, Jr. 31 Years

(l-r) Bishop Calvin C. Barlow, Jr. and Elder Emma Dee Harlan. (photo by D. Culp)

It was a remarkable time in South Nashville that will be remembered for some time to come. Bishop Calvin C. Barlow, Jr. and his lovely wife Rutha L. Barlow, celebrated 31 years in the ministry, with 3 separate services. He is the Sr. Pastor of Second Missionary Baptist Church, in South Nashville. On Saturday October 21st the planning committee held a gospel concert which sang praises for anyone in listening space. On Sunday October 22nd two services were held at the church. One at 9:30 AM and the other at 3:00 PM (CDT) Bishop Barlow Jr. Son, Minister Calvin C. Barlow, III delivered a most powerful sermon and ministered in song shortly afterward. His church home is Greater Shiloh Missionary Baptist Church of Birmingham, Alabama.

An equally powerful evening service followed after a sumptuous homemade, full course meal in SMBC’s Fellowship Hall. Before and after the services, the church Fellowship Hall held its own with a myriad of unique and one of the kind decorations.

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Faith of a Mustard Seed

The Invitation is extended to you for This Evening, October 10th at 7:00pm for “An Evening With Howard Thurman: Prelude To A Season of Reflection”. Metropolitan Interdenominational Church at 2128 Eleventh Ave. N. 37208 where Rev. Edwin C. Sanders, II is Senior Servant and Host. Come out and join us in this rare moment of inspiration. I will be a part of a Panel of person who had personal encounters with him. Barbara Woods-Washington 2014

In his ‘Epilogue’ to ‘Jesus And The Disinherited’, Dr. Howard Thurman has managed to give critical direction and purpose to life in these words: “When a solitary individual is able to mingle his strength with the forces of history and emerge with a name, a character, a personality,… it means that against the background of anonymity he has emerged articulate… “. In defining a major point of departure for Bible-Life Study, I am convinced that the concept ‘articulate’ must be examined.

I recall my year at Boston University in 1971-72 and the fact that in my movement through the city’s public transportation system to and from campus to my work study job teaching sewing at the Harriet Tubman House on Holyoke St., I was plagued by brothers who, in their zealousness for the Black Muslim faith in which they had found deliverance, hurled at me doctrines which were disturbing to me at the time. It was not a question of ‘smugness’ for I had not darkened the door of a single church in Boston. But, I suspect, a question of ‘articulation of faith’. Howard Thurman

Later in my life while in ministry at Salem, in Harlem, I was making hospital rounds and stopped in a clothing store on Delancy Street. The Jewish shop owner looked at the clergy collar that I was wearing and began to question me about my faith. His questions went to the very heart, the very gut of Christianity. The kind of questions that make for warfare in the Bible Study classes of the traditional Church! By the time I broke away we had spent over two hours in dialogue and he said to me that I was the most intelligent Christian that he had met.

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