“There Is Something Far, Far Better”

But I am hard-pressed between the two. I have the desire to leave [this world] and be with Christ, for that is far, far better; – (Philippians 1:23 AMP)

I recall hearing an ole’ seasoned Believer say one time, “The great difficulty  most folks have in this life, when it comes time to ‘check out’, is turning Loose of this ole world.”

I never forgot that statement; because, in reality, I once found it to be the case with my own heart.

The truth is that there are many (if not most) that would rather not take that journey beyond the veil of this life into the next, and it’s largely because we simply… don’t…. want…. to turn loose of this ole’ world.

Yet, we see David saying to his son as he was transitioning into the after life, …. “I go the way of all the earth” (see 1st Kings 2:2), which tells us that every one who ever exists will go this way.

But the knowledge of that reality doesn’t make it any easier, even for the believer, because of the strong affections we develop while here.

Still, we all must go this way.

In the verse above, we read in the context, that The apostle Paul had a perception that seems very rare to find.

He said that he was “torn” between a desire to be with Christ, or stay here in the world.

“Being with Christ”, he said, is “Far, Far Better…..”

In light of that truth, I challenge you to think of what would be the best and most fulfilling joy you think you could ever experience in this life…. (Done it yet?)

No matter how lofty the dream or experience, There is Yet Something Far, Far better than that..

Lord, help us to set our affections on the things above, where it matters the most… and grant that we not only live for the “here and now”, but more so for the “there and then.” Give us an eternal perspective that we might live the days granted to us wisely.
In Jesus Name…

In His Peace,

Pastor Lowe 

What Part Will You Choose?

And Jesus answered and said unto her, “Martha, Martha, thou art anxious and troubled about many things. But one thing is needful, and Mary hath chosen that good part, which shall not be taken away from her.” – (Luke 10:41-42)

One of the easiest things to do in this life is to get caught up, and preoccupied, with all that we have to do, personally, and all that’s going on around us.

More often than not, we don’t realize that we’ve probably bitten off more than we can chew until it’s too late.

We find ourselves exhausted, frustrated (even with good endeavors), and overwhelmed to the point that we fold under the pressure of “doing”, and we eventually take it out on those we love.

That’s sorta what was happening with Martha in the verses above….

She was doing a “good thing”, but she let the “good thing” distract her from the “better thing”; sitting at Jesus’ feet and hearing his word.

We all have obligations and things that definitely need our constant attention in life.

But I have personally found, that, when I “neglect” to choose the most needful part at the outset of each day, I become like a dull Axe.

On the flipside of that, I find that, being in God’s presence brings refreshing, joy unspeakable, and much needed wisdom to guide me through the day…

In fact, the Bible says, “Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.” (Pslams 16:11)

Everyday we have a choice ..

What Part will you Choose?

Father, we pray that you will make us a people who will make it an absolute priority each day to choose the part that can never be taken away…. To sit at your feet.. We thank you for your never ending invitation in Christ Jesus…

Grace and Peace Be Yours, in Him,

Pastor Lowe

Always Leave Room To Grow

..”and he began to speak boldly and fearlessly in the synagogue. But when Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they took him aside and explained more accurately to him the way of God [and the full story of the life of Christ].” – (Acts 18:26 Amp)

The other day I was driving and thinking about my grandfather.

Although He’s been gone from this earth for a few years already, I still miss him dearly and think about him quite often.

My grandfather was a very practical man; always actively engaged in his faith, his family, and his life’s work.

He was also a simple and modest man.

Yet, his insight and understanding of things pertaining to both life and Godliness seemed to be profound and immeasurable.

I didn’t think that there was “anything” that my grandfather didn’t know, or anything he hadn’t experienced…

But, at the ripe ‘ole age of 77, I heard him say these words (as he gave way to a younger generation of ministers); “I’m a much better learner than I am anything else…”

It didn’t make sense to me at the time.

But, just like so many other things he said during the course of my life, it makes sense now.

He left room to grow…. He knew he didn’t know everything, so he was always open to learning more and growing as a person.

He was pliable and teachable (and he knew those who weren’t…. Lol).

In the abovementioned verse, we see a man named Apollos, who was passionate in what he knew and understood (vs. 25).

But He didn’t have the full picture, or the whole loaf. He had to be taken aside to gain a greater understanding concerning the gospel.

He listened…. He learned… and as a result, he became a big help to the believers at the next course in his journey (vs. 27)

What’s the Point Pastor?…

Never think that you know everything that there is to know about God and Life…; Always Leave Room To Grow.

In Christ,

Pastor Lowe

Forgive To Be Forgiven

14 For if you forgive others their trespasses [their reckless and willful sins], your heavenly Father will also forgive you.15 But if you do not forgive others [nurturing your hurt and anger with the result that it interferes with your relationship with God], then your Father will not forgive your trespasses. – Matthew (6:14-15 AMP)

This morning I had the opportunity to be in the presence of someone that had done a grave injustice to someone dear to me.

At the time of the offense, it felt as if the wrong had been done to me personally, but it hadn’t.

Still, I found myself nurturing a grudge and willingly wanting to imprison the individual, never letting them off the hook for what they did…. (to someone else, mind you).

But I realized that my unwillingness to “Let Go” hurt me far more than it hurt them; and even worse, it was a detriment to my relationship with God.

So I chose to forgive; and this morning I got a chance to see what forgiveness really looks like…

Although my mind could recall the injustice, I made a choice, by the grace of God, to not hold that wrongdoing against the person, and act as if the offense never happened, showing kindness throughout.

Afterwards, I realized that it wasn’t as bad as I thought it mightve been, and also, that, my relationship with my Father was far more important to me than nursing a grudge for a past injustice.

To be forgiven means not only having peace with God, but also having the freedom to love without restriction, and entrust everything into the Father’s care… Good or bad.

Who, or what, have you not forgiven?

Nothing in this life is worth jeopardizing Fellowship with your Heavenly Father…

Let it Go and put it in His Hands…

Father, as you search us and know our hearts, we pray that you will show us any area(s) of unforgiveness in our hearts and give us the strength to release the hurt and let it go, by faith.

In Jesus Name

May His Peace Be Yours In Christ,

Pastor Lowe

“Do It Anyway”

“When He had finished speaking, He said to Simon [Peter], “Put out into the deep water and lower your nets for a catch [of fish].” Simon replied, “Master, we worked hard all night [to the point of exhaustion] and caught nothing [in our nets], but at Your word I will [do as you say and] lower the nets [again].””
‭‭Luke‬ ‭5:4-5‬ ‭AMP‬‬

Yesterday we, as a church family, had the awesome privilege of going out into the streets to share the gospel and hand out ice cold waters and pamphlets to cars as they passed by.

It was a tremendous blessing to join with the Father in “His Work” to share “His Truth” and Love with others.

Yet, I have to admit, that, prior to this recent outing, I had quite a few bouts with being apprehensive, for a number of reasons.

But not long ago someone told me “Do It Anyway”, and that stuck with me….

In the text above, we see that Peter was apprehensive to do as The Lord had Instructed; and naturally speaking, he had a legitimately good reason for not wanting to cast his net into the water again….  “Master, we worked hard all night [to the point of exhaustion] and caught nothing [in our nets]”…

Yet, he eventually says, “but at Your word I will [do as you say and] lower the nets [again].”

The way that I interpret that verse is, … “Lord, I’m going to Do It Anyway (because of Your Word)….

Just like Peter, God has given us the Word (Go) and the green Light.

You and I may not be eloquent of speech (like Moses said), and we may not have the world’s good and resources (silver and gold we have none), but we do have The God of heaven backing us up….

In spite of my own frailty, mixed motives, and apprehensions…. I’ve learned to simply trust God with the results.

Paul said “I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase.

Just Do It and leave the rest to Him.

May The Lord Bless You and Keep You,

Pastor Lowe Sent from my iPhone

Being Faithful To Your Call

“My sons, do not be negligent and careless now, for the Lord has chosen you to stand in His presence, to attend to His service, and to be His ministers and burn incense.”
2 Chronicles 29:11 AMP

The above verse was a center piece of my thoughts and meditation throughout the course of this past week; mainly because of the charge that Hezekiah had given to the Priests and Levites.

I took it as a charge to me personally… and I think this is something that every believer in Christ could benefit from as well.

If we are “In Christ”, it is because God called us, and He chose us, for His own good Pleasure and Purpose. (See Eph. 1:9)

In addition to that, the scripture says …"We are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we “SHOULD” walk in them..”

Having said that, I believe a good question to ask ourselves is, “Am I walking (faithfully) in the thing that God has called and chosen me to?”

Or am I being “negligent and careless?”

The Priests and Levites of Hezekiah’s time had probably become inactive and unemployed, because, prior to King Hezekiah’s reign, The wicked King Ahaz closed the doors to the House of The Lord and rid God’s house of all of the articles of worship.

But now, under King Hezekiah, they had another opportunity to “make their calling and election sure.”

The charge was a simple one; “Be not negligent and careless now… For The Lord Has Chosen You…”

What has God called You To?

Whether it be the Function of a Father, Mentor, Mother, Pastor, Or Friend…. Are You Being Faithful To Your Call?

Father, we thank You that You have Chosen Us to be in your family; and we thank you for the good works that you have ordained beforehand for each of us to walk in. Today, we simply ask that you would help us, by your strength, to be faithful to what you have called us to.

May Grace and Peace Be Yours,

Pastor Lowe

God’s Ways Are Higher

“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,” declares the Lord.“For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways And My thoughts higher than your thoughts. – Isaiah 55:8-9

Recently, I was praying about a particular situation for someone dear to me.

I believed that I was sincere in my petition to The Lord, so I simply voiced every desire and expectation that I had regarding this circumstance.

In other words, I was letting my requests “be made known unto God”, like His word says we should.

Yet, in the process of praying, there was one request that made me strongly reconsider every other request that I’d made.

The request? It was simply, “Lord Help Us…”

After voicing that one request, I realized that God’s way of “helping” could be something totally different from everything that I had already voiced and requested.

What I thought was “Help” was merely a bandaid on the wound. But God’s means of “help” would bring healing, and so much more.

I came to understand, that, what I “think” they need, and what He “Knows” they need, could oftentimes be completely opposite.

Jesus said, “What man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone?” (Matt. 7:9)

But sometimes, I believe we’re guilty of asking for the stone when it’s His hearts’ desire to give us bread; and I believe it’s largely due to our limited perspective.

God’s ways are higher (and better).

I will keep that in mind when I pray.

Father, help us to rest in the fact that Your ways are Higher, and because of such, you know what’s best….
Thank You for Your Mercy…

In Christ’s Love,

Pastor Lowe

God Will Give You The Words

19 “But when they hand you over, do not worry about how or what you are to say; for what you are to say will be given you within that [very] hour;20 for it is not you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.” (Matthew 10:19-20 AMP)

One of the biggest things that we often struggle with (as believers) is witnessing and sharing the truth of the gospel, and what God has done in our lives, with others.

There are a myriad of reasons why we are often deficient in this area; we’re either too busy or so preoccupied with our own lives that we just don’t think to reach out.

Yet, there are people that God has placed in our lives that will probably never hear the message of His Love for them unless they hear it from us….

If we don’t know how to approach the situation, God will guide us… If we don’t have the strength, God will give us the strength…. And, if we don’t know what to say, God will give us the words..

Our part is to Trust in His Power and ability in us and rest in His Purpose for us…

 What you and I need in that very hour, He has promised to provide.

Remember it’s not us, but His Spirit working through us…

Father, you said we are to be anxious for nothing, but in everything, by supplication and prayer, let our requests be made known unto you. We give you every apprehension and anxiety and ask that you would work through us; and help us, even more so, to allow you.

In The Love Of Christ,
Pastor Lowe

Because He’s Good

Thou art good, and doest good; teach me Thy statutes. – Psalm 119:68

The other day I was speaking with a gentleman who is of the same profession as I am, striping parking lots.

He had recently ran into a great misfortune by having a good portion of his possessions stolen and taken away, along with his truck.

I felt really bad for him at the time this all happened; it had to had been at least a couple of months ago.

Well, when he called me the other day, it was to share the good news that he had gotten it all back!

He was very excited, and I was just as excited for him!

I told him, “Man God really blessed you”, to which he said, “Yeah, I treat people right…. I do what’s right…. I don’t take anything from people….. I…. I…. I…..I….”

“I” immediately cut him off right in the middle of his list of accolades and said, “No, God blessed you because HE’S good. There’s nothing we do to earn His blessings; nor are we able to. When He does good, it is because HE’S good and wants to do us Good.”

He agreed.

But, it had me reflecting on my own heart and attitude….  

Because we’re human, we ALL have that inherent tendency to want to put a badge of approval on our chest from time to time and think ourselves to be (inwardly) good people. Yet, the Bible says, “verily every man at his best state is altogether vanity.” (Psalms 39:5b)

That gentleman’s words were a reproof to my own heart, and it awakened me again to realize, that, We are able to experience and enjoy good only because HE is good.

Lord God, forgive us for not fully acknowledging your goodness…. And forgive us even more so for not resting in, and Trusting in, your goodness. Give us eyes to see that you alone are good.

In God’s Peace,

Pastor Lowe

He Won’t Let You Break

“A broken reed He will not break [off] And a dimly burning wick He will not extinguish [He will not harm those who are weak and suffering]; He will faithfully bring forth justice.” – Isaiah 42:3 AMP

You ever heard the term “When it rains, it pours”?
It’s not a biblical term, but we get the gist of what it’s intending to say; mainly, that, when things start happening they just keep happening.

Well, yesterday was one of those kind of days; it just seemed like it was one thing after another, from the beginning of the day until the end.

The challenges were coming from all sides… health, financial, family, work, church… You name it..

Not to mention the fact that we were running on very little rest as a result of the challenges that we faced the night prior. (If you’re human and honest, you know that being tired can make you a lot more honory).

Yet, in spite of all of the things that time won’t allow me to share, I realized this morning, when God allowed me to open my eyes, that He didn’t Let us Break.

In fact, though we were weary, tired, hungry, and desperate for any kind of a break (from the trials), it was as if we were strengthened even more with each new challenge.

At times, I felt like the bruised reed, or even the wick that was smoldering; but never completely broken nor fully extinguished.

He knows that we’re weak; but in weakness He becomes our strength… And He knows that sometimes our lights tend to burn dimly; yet, In His Faithfulness and commitment to us, He gently fans the embers until we become a burning flame again.

Yesterday, we didn’t Break because He wouldn’t let us; and because He Is no respector of persons, neither will He Let You Break.

Lord, today we thank You for the Grace and Strength we have available to us in Christ  Jesus. Help us to know, and fully grasp, what riches we have because of The Life that “was” bruised and broken, for us.

In Christ’s Love,

Pastor Lowe