Saturday, June 27, 2009

Word of Thanks

I just want to take a moment to thank the ministries and who have thus far partnered with us in our ministry in Lima, Peru. They include: Calvary Chapel, Dallas, TX; Calvary Christian Fellowship, Midland, TX, Calvary Baptist Church, Andrews, TX; Northshore Bible Chapel, Ingleside, TX; Borderland Calvary Chapel, San Benito, TX; Calvary Chapel, Mount Pleasant, TX and Donna Spearman, Houston, TX. Again, a sincere thank you for supporting our ministry. Please pray with us that the Lord will bring more. - Dwayne

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Support Update

We just returned from a couple of weeks in West Texas sharing our future ministry in Lima, Peru at the Calvary Chapel Bible College. It was a very good visit. Both Calvary Christian Fellowship in Midland and Calvary Baptist Church in Andrews have come along side of us with one-time offerings and monthly support. We really do appreciate both of those churches and their willingness to partner with us. A special word of thanks to Pastor Steve Westfall (Midland) and Pastor Bill Melton (Andrews) for letting me share with their congregations.

By way of financial update, in one-time offerings, we stand at 6000.00. At least 5000.00 of that will be used for flights and shipping to Peru. The other 1000.00 will go toward truck rental and gas to get out of our current rental home and to take our things to Andrews, Texas where a family has graciously agreed to store them. We are still in need of funds for housing, furnishings, and the boy’s home-schooling curriculum for the upcoming year.

We have already resigned our teaching positions and expect to be in Lima around the second week of August. This will allow us a little time to settle in and prepare for the incoming students and the start of the Fall Semester on the 24th. Please continue to pray about how you and/or your fellowship can be a part of this ministry.

In conclusion, I’ve heard from several who have expressed that they would like to help. All I ask is that you let us know as soon as possible so that we can move forward in the confidence that the Lord has provided for us. I’m sure that all of you know what it feels like to be “hanging out on the limb” like this. Also, I must admit that I’m a whole lot more comfortable teaching than fund raising.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Passing the Blame

Today, we pick up our study in Galatians 6:5 which says,“For every man shall bear his own burden.” Ultimately, God holds us responsible and no one else for our burdens. Unfortunately, we live in a society today in which it’s everybody else’s fault. We, as a society, take no personal responsibility for anything anymore. Well, it’s nothing new. When God confronted Adam for his sin in the Garden of Eden after taking the “forbidden fruit”, Adam responded, “It was the woman that you gave me.” In other words, it’s either her fault or yours, but not mine.

Changing subjects here, v.6 says, “Let him that is taught in the word communicate unto him that teacheth in all good things.” In other words, the minister should be compensated. It’s amazing how we’ll pay the mechanic to fix our car, the doctor to fix our ills, the school teacher to educate our children, and not want to pay the preacher who ministers to us in the Word. 1 Timothy 5:18 says, “For the Scripture says, "You shall not muzzle an ox while it treads out the grain," and, "The laborer is worthy of his wages."

I’ve known so many pastors who are virtually on the edge of starvation because their churches simply will not pay them a decent salary. How sad that is. I don’t think that a pastor should necessarily make more than the average member of the congregation, but nothing says that he should make less either. A man should be worth his salt. If he works hard and serves the congregation well, he should be rewarded accordingly. If he is a lazy sluggard that simply shows up on Sunday morning and delivers a half-hearted message to the people, he should also be rewarded accordingly. In the case of the former, honor and cherish that man of God for being faithful and count yourselves blessed. In the case of the latter, find yourselves a new pastor.

Notice v.7, “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” God’s laws will stand regardless of how one feels about them. Here we also see the law of spiritual investment. The way you invest is the way you’re going to reap. In other words, you get back what you put into it. Put much, get much – put little, get little. That’s life my friend.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Self Examination

Today, we pick up our study through Galatians in 6:2 where it says, “Bear ye one another's burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.” In order to properly understand this verse, we must remember v.1 of the same chapter which said, “Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.” What Paul is saying here is that each of us has areas of weakness and we should be willing to help each other with them. Thus, in doing, we fulfill the law of Christ. What is the “law of Christ”? It’s found in John 13:34 where it says, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.”

Notice v. 3, “For if a man think himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceiveth himself.” We are all vulnerable to falling. None of us are above it. I read in a book the other day this quote: “Be careful my brother, for what is in me lies dormant in you also.” That is so true. Truthfully, every one of us is usually only one bad decision from ruin. That is why we must totally depend upon God for every decision. Yes, even the ones that some to be “no-brainers” for us. I’ve found that what I perceive to be my greatest strengths many times end up being my greatest weaknesses? Why? – self-reliance!

Notice v. 4, “But let every man prove his own work, and then shall he have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another.” Here Paul goes on to say that we better look deep within ourselves as well. He also said in 1 Corinthians 11:28, “But let a man examine himself…”, and in 2 Corinthians 13:5, “Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves…” Each of us has an obligation to ourselves, others and God to examine our own lives to see where it aligns with Christ and to make adjustments as necessary before we start looking into other people’s lives. In this way, we avoid hypocrisy. Jesus said in Matthew 7:3, “And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?”