Today is Memorial Day, and I wanted to make sure and share some thoughts I have. First and foremost, THANK YOU to every man and woman who serves our country’s military. We live in the greatest country ever, and the men and women of our armed forces pay the price around the world everyday to protect our freedom. Please know how grateful I am that today I’m grilling hot dogs with my boys, hanging out with the family, and not worried about my freedom.
Today I’m also thankful for all those who have paid the ultimate price, death, to purchase my freedom. Remember, freedom isn’t free; it’s costly. Two weeks ago I did a funeral for a young man who died in service in Iraq; it’s been heavy on my heart.
Â To all readers: why not take a moment and pray for our men and women in service today?
Next week Iâ€™m heading through the southeast for a series of meetings with some pastors.
On Wednesday, the 23rd, Gary Lamb is hosting a lunch for any church planters or pastors who are interested. Weâ€™ll be doing a Q & A on church planting in general, or any other leadership topics. I guarantee that anytime you get Gary and me together you’re going to be laughing!
If youâ€™d like to join us, contact Gary through this post.
It’s Thursday night and I’m sitting here with the hiccups (still) and stomach flu; not a great combo! However, the Suns are up by 6 so there’s still hope for the evening.
Anyways, here’s some stuff on my mind…
- Seize The Moment was some of the toughest teaching I’ve ever done.
- “Mighty To Save” is an awesome worship song.
- I’m married to the most awesome woman on the planet.
- Marge, Lisa and Eileen are the best receptionists ever!
- I love doing ministry as a team, it’s way better.
- Little league playoffs start next week, hope my boys do well.
- I’ve noticed that manyÂ adults build better relationships through little league than through church. What’s wrong with this picture?
- Palm Valley Church rocks!
- I can’t wait to head to Atlanta next week and hang out with Gary.
- Our children’s ministry is blowing up. Dave’s really developing as a leader.
- I can’t wait to get away with my kids for some vacation time. They’ve been really patient through this whole building campaign, now it’s time for them to get some serious undivided dad time.
Going into this weekend we knew it was one of the most critical weeks in the history of Palm Valley Church. This was the week everyone was to make their giving commitments to the Seize The Moment campaign.Â As we prepared we really sensed the evil on eattacking.
Then Saturday morning around 3:00 am I got the hiccups. I’m talking straight up violent, every 3-5 seconds hiccups. We tried every home remedy and they wouldn’t go away. The doc’s couldn’t figure it out. Finally, a cardiologist who’s a Christian said “this isn’t physical, it’s a spiritual attack”. That jacked me up, because I knew the evil one must be afraid of what we’re doing at Palm Valley.
Â We prayed, but God wouldn’t take away the hiccups. I even had Ryan go on stage with me so that he would talk if I couldn’t. But God is a miracle God! Both services, just as I walked on stage, He stopped the hiccups just long enough for me to give the message. After I walked off stage they came back, worse then ever. Through the incredible pain, I’m thanking God that He reminds me it’s all about Him, and not about me. What a privilege to be called to speak His Word.
I’m still fighting the hiccups, the next step is for the doctors to hospitalize and sedate me for 24 hours, pray I don’t have to do this!
Tomorrow morning I’m performing the funeral for Brice Pearson, who died in Iraq last week. His parents are leaders at Palm Valley, so I count it a privilege in many ways to do this service. I pray I bring honor to Brice, as well as the Lord. If you think about it, please pray for me.
Here’s the official Press release…
Army Sgt. Brice A. Pearson, 32, of Phoenix; assigned to the 5th Squadron, 73rd Cav32, of Phoenix; assigned to the 5th Squadron, 73rd Cavalry Regiment, 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 82nd Airborne Division, Fort Bragg, N.C.; died April 23 in Sadah, Iraq, of wounds suffered when an improvised explosive device detonated near his location.