What A Calling!


Ezra had spent his entire life studying and obeying the Law of theĀ LordĀ and teaching it to others.

~Ezra 7:10, CEV


Trust and obey, for there’s no other way to be happy in Jesus, but to trust and obey.

~John Harold Sammis

Ezra was a scribe. He lived long before there was type set and printing presses. In the old days, articles were duplicated manually by copying documents word for word. Ezra did this with the O.T. Scriptures, matter of fact, many folks believe that Ezra edited the O.T. and put the books in their present order. Back in the day when I attempted to memorize scripture; I would do so by copying the verse over and over. This is what Ezra did for a living; as such he became and EXPERT in the law [Scripture]. He didn’t just get into the scriptures, they got into him. Years ago at our pastor’s conference, Mike Dawson made a comment that I have not forgotten {imagine that}. Concerning some liberal professors in our seminaries, he said, “They deal with the scripture but the scriptures aren’t dealing with them.” Ezra not only studied scripture: he put it into practice. Ezra had a three-fold calling: [1] Study the scripture [2] Obey the scripture and [3] Teach the scripture. This is the calling of every pastor.

I am thankful, and perhaps I should attribute it to the GRACE of God, that when I study scripture, I get convicted of my sin. God’s word in conjunction with the blessed Holy Spirit points out my sin and the Holy Spirit in conjunction with my conscious convicts me till I obey. Teaching is the fun part but no teacher can be effective unless they first STUDY and OBEY. We teach by example. The bible says a lot about STEWARDSHIP but I can’t teach what the bible says about stewardship until I practice Christian stewardship myself. If I want my congregants to give, I have to set the example.

I was called to church once and of course, I began preaching on stewardship right a way. The offerings began to increase [no dramatically but little by little] and one of the members thanked me for addressing the subject. He exact words to me were, “Our former pastor never preached on giving.” I said immediately, “There is a reason he did not, he wasn’t giving himself.” You cannot asks someone to do something you aren’t doing yourself. My favorite story on the subject is of an old cranky deacon who came to me bragging about a preacher he had met on a bus ride. He said, “He told me he had been preaching for fifty years and he had never preached on money. Too many other things in the bible to preach.” Then the old crank said to me, “What do you think about that?” I said, “I think you were listening to a preacher that is robbing God.” As Jack Taylor once said, “A man that has the audacity to rob God will rob you so don’t close your eyes if you pray with him.”

Our corn crop is gone. I had three tanks of rain water but I could not save two rows, let alone the patch. This is the first time I can remember not making a single ear. With the rain in April and the first week of May, it seemed like a done deal but now it has been over a month since we have had a measurable rain. I am trying to save the tomatoes, okra, squash and peppers.

We have too many irons in the fire and I desperately needs some things to fall in place today. My sweet friend, Mrs. Annie Murphy was promoted this week and her service will be tomorrow at 12:00 at Pecks. June and I went to Myrle Nelson’s visitation last Wednesday only to find out we were a week early. Her service is this coming Wednesday.

Pray for Lilly. Our friend Bob Cook is getting better by the day.

This man tells the truth about demos…

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