Feeling powerless is one of the most frustrating and sometimes even terrifying experiences we have as humans. Whether we are being pushed around by a person in authority, seeing a loved one suffer through a health crisis we can’t change, or feeling overwhelmed by the number of people suffering around the world, we hate feeling like we have no control.
We might seek power to overcome limitations and insecurities or some other obstacle or challenge we face in life. But what does real power look like? When I mention the word power, what comes to mind?
The Bible is alive and powerful and sharper than any two-edged sword (Heb. 4:12). We need to get into God’s Word and let His Word get into us. Reading the Bible is the first step, but then we need to go beyond that and meditate on His Word. Psalm 1 says that when we mediate on God’s Word, we will be fruitful like a tree planted by streams of water (vv. 2–3). We have to read it, meditate on it, and memorize it.
God has given every single one of us the ability to make a difference with our lives. If we aren’t careful we can focus on our limitations or on our failures. But I believe every single one of us can live a life of excellence!
What is excellence?
Excellence is different than perfection. Excellence is doing the best you can with what God has put in your hands.
Perfection is never being satisfied until everything is exactly the way you think it should be.
In 1998 Martha and I moved from Lynchburg, VA to the Raleigh area of NC to start a new church. I can remember driving around rural North Carolina seeing homemade signs promoting a fundraiser a church or organization was doing with typos and written sloppy by hand. I began to think how we could raise the level of excellence in our community. I believe that when we live a life of excellence that it will help others around us see that they can too.
Our church has gone from meeting in an elementary school...
Mondays can be difficult to get back in the flow after the weekend so I am going to be posting some encouragement on Mondays to help get you off to a strong start to your week!
This past weekend I was able to check something off my bucket list. I have always wanted to go to a Boston Red Sox baseball game at Fenway Park which is the oldest Major League Baseball park. It was built in 1912 and is famous for the big wall in left field called the Green Monster. We went to see the Red Sox play the Twins with some friends and it was a great game. The Minnesota Twins tied the game in the 9th inning and it went into extra innings. Halfway through the 10th inning we decided to go home to not only beat the traffic but we were tired from being in the heat and we had an early event the next morning at the church. We get in the car and turn the radio on so we can listen to the game as we drive home. As we are pulling out of the parking lot Mookie Betts hits a walk off home run to win the...
Philippians 2:1-18, “Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, 2 then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. 3 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, 4 not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others. 5 In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: 6 Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage; 7 rather, he made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. 8 And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to death - even death on a cross! ...
When we started C3 Church 20 years ago our vision was to provide Real Hope for Real People in a Real World. A lot of things have changed from the early days of C3 Church (I used to have hair for one thing, LOL) but one thing that hasn’t changed is our vision. This entire month of May we are focusing on living out this vision in a strategic way. We are gathering on Sundays for the teaching of God’s Word on hope, gathering supplies for those in need and then during the week we are serving our community. It’s been a blast! The first week we honored and served all first responders. My men’s connect group decided to provide lunch for the Johnston County Sheriff’s Dept. I had the privilege of going to each office and shaking the hands of each one there and thanking them for serving our community and keeping us safe.
Click here to watch a 30 second video from Captain Jeff Caldwell.
Here are a some of the ways we have already served our community.
It’s hard to believe that exactly one year ago we were celebrating the release of my book I AM – Encounter The One That Gives You Purpose and Peace in a Crazy World!
Many people have asked me if it was difficult to write a book.
And the short answer is yes - it is a challenge!
But, you can do it! I believe that everyone should consider writing a book.
Dr. Elmer Towns, who has written hundreds of books and is the Co-Founder of Liberty University, encouraged me to write a book. I asked him "why," and he said that your book will:
1. Last longer than you will last
2. Go places you will never go.
In other words it’s a way to help a lot of people and leave a legacy!
So, here are a few thoughts if you are thinking about writing a book:
Do you have a passion to help people?
I believe writing a book is similar to other opportunities and you have to ask yourself do you have a passion to make a difference? If your heart is not in it, it is going to be almost...
This Sunday we are starting a brand new series called Real Hope that I am so excited about it! We are taking the whole month of May and focusing on outreach in our community and around the world. Each week we will have a different focus and will ask you to bring different items to the C3 for us to donate, as well as give you ideas so you can go out and serve during the week!
Week 1: May 6
Hope Focus: First Responders (Fire, EMS, and Police)
Gather: Stock the Snacks
Items to Bring: Gum, Gatorade, Protein Bars, and Coffee
Week 2: May 13
Hope Focus: Widows, Orphans, and the Forgotten
Gather: iChoose Pregnancy Center
Items to Bring: Paper Towels, Toilet Paper, Tissues, and Clorox Wipes
This past week I had the privilege of teaching an App Session at the ARC Conference. For those of you who don't know, I serve on the Lead Team for ARC, which is a church-planting organization that plants life-giving churches. It stands for Association of Related Churches. I shared how to reach your city without losing your mind. What I shared is applicable for anyone, not just senior pastors.
1. BE AUTHENTIC – You’ve got to be yourself! Being fake is exhausting. You may impress people with your success but you connect with them through your failures.
James 5:16, “Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.”(NIV)
2. HAVE MARGIN – this is something that I am still trying to be consistent with.
If there is one mistake I’ve made - it is not having enough margin. I am learning that we must have margin in our time,...
Progress is painful.
Pain is not a popular word in our culture, rather comfort is a common word used today. The problem with comfort is you don't get anywhere or see any progress. If you want to grow and see change in your life, it is going to require hard work and sacrifice. John Maxwell puts it this way, "Everything worthwhile is uphill."
Right now we are in the process of having some painting and minor updates on our home. It has required us to find another place to stay for a few nights due to which rooms they were working on and painting. I found myself tempted to complain and God reminded me that progress is painful. If you want to progress and be productive, we must be willing to go through some pain or inconvenience.
You may have heard the exercise motto, “No pain no gain.” If you want to get stronger, you must be willing to endure the pain while you are working out. The same is true as we grow as a leader, pastor or business person. We must be...
There is power in the Word of God. Proverbs 18:21 tells us that the words that we speak can bring life or death. We can build up or tear down. We can encourage or discourage.
Rather than declaring your problems let’s declare God’s word.
Take some time to mediate on the following scriptures and declare them over your life and your situation. And the next time the devil tries to make you feel like there is no hope, afraid, etc. declare God’s word!
Do you feel trapped with no Hope?
Psalm 121:1-2, “I lift up my eyes to the mountains—where does my help come from?2 My help comes from the Lord,the Maker of heaven and earth.”(NIV)
Are You Afraid?
2 Timothy 1:7, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”(NKJV)
Do you have doubts?
Ephesians 1:13-14, “…When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal,the promised Holy...