Wednesday, January 31, 2018

Book Review: "Gospel Treason" By: Brad Bigney

Just finished the book "Gospel Treason" by Brad Bigney and want to tell you this is a must read for all believers! One of the hardest things in the christian life is the internal heart issues of idols. Idols of the heart are defined by the author as "anything or anyone that captures our hearts, minds, and affections more than God". What can be an idol of the heart ... Anything! Even a good thingcan become an idol!

From Amazon: Using real-life stories and examples, Brad Bigney shows us how the idols we might not even recognize can still have devastating effects in our lives. In this transparent, honest book, he helps us to identify our idols, understand how they lead us to commit treason against the gospel— and finally repent of them and root them out forever by turning to the only One who can fill our every need.

I would highly recommend this book!

I Remain,
Pastor Steve

Book Review: "Putting Your Past in it's Place" By: Stephen Viars

Image result for putting the past in its placePastor Steve's Thoughts: Having attended the Biblical Counseling Training Conference in Lafayette, Indiana many times I have had the privilege of sitting under the teaching ministry of Pastor Viars.  I have heard this material taught in a workshop format but would have to confess the way it is set out in this book is far superior! Dealing with our past in for key areas, a case study that is carried throughout the book and a final case study at the end of the book.  Why is dealing with the past so important, because we all have one! I really think this is a great treatment of a pertinent topic for today!
For this inaugural book review I have chosen the book "Putting Your Past in it's Place" by Stephen Viars.

About the book from Amazon: Lives grind to a halt when people don’t know how to relate to their past. Some believe “the past is nothing” and attempt to suppress the brokenness again and again. Others miss out on renewal and change by making the past more important than their present and future. Neither approach moves people toward healing or hope.
Pastor and biblical counselor Stephen Viars introduces a third way to view one’s personal history―by exploring the role of the past as God intended. Using Scripture to lead readers forward, Viars provides practical measures to
  • understand the important place “the past” is given in Scripture
  • replace guilt and despair with forgiveness and hope
  • turn failures into stepping stones for growth
This motivating, compassionate resource is for anyone ready to review and release the past so that God can transform their behaviors, relationships, and their ability to hope in a future.

About the Author from Amazon: Stephen Viars earned his DMin degree in biblical counseling from Westminster Theological Seminary and has served as a pastor and biblical counselor for more than 20 years at Faith Baptist Church and Faith Biblical Counseling Ministries in Lafayette, Indiana. He serves as the president of the board of the Biblical Counselors Coalition, the vice president of the board of National Association of Nouthetic Counselors, and is a frequent speaker at conferences, colleges, and seminaries in the United States and abroad.

I Remain,
Pastor Steve

Pastor Steve's Book Reviews ...

Having been challenged by my kids to be a more prolific reader, I have been doing just that!  As I have been reading I've been thinking that it would be helpful to put up some book reviews to help and encourage some of you to pick up a book and give it a read.

As always, when one undertakes such an endeavor, there will be conversations, agreements and disagreements over theology, doctrine, authors and topics. Knowing and understanding this truth ... my reviews are strictly my opinion and if you disagree, you  are more than welcome to do so. My goal is to simply introduce what I hope are good books to spur you in your walk with God and your progressive sanctification!

One thing I would ask you to consider is being part of the Goodreads community. From Wikipedia "Goodreads is an Amazon company and "social cataloging" website founded in December 2006 and launched in January 2007 . The website allows individuals to freely search Goodreads' database of books, annotations, and reviews. Users can sign up and register books to generate library catalogs and reading lists. They can also create their own groups of book suggestions, surveys, polls, blogs, and discussions." Goodreads is a great way to keep track of what you've read, what you are reading and what you are desiring to read. Once signed up, you are able to connect with other friends and see what their reading! It is a great way to encourage one another as well as challenge one another to continue learning through reading good books!

Trust these book reviews are a help and maybe a blessing to you!

I Remain,
Pastor Steve

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

All For Not!

Due to a technical issue at the church we did not record 3 sermons out of a 5 part series. Very disappointing!

After trying unsuccessfully to find the lost recording somewhere on our media center computer it was decided that they just didn't exist or were deleted.

So the decision was made that I would have to go into and empty room and re-record the sermons! Now from my perspective this is very weird ... no matter how hard I try, there is no way that these re-recorded sermons are going to be anything like the originals. but frankly, we have no other choices.

So today I went into an empty Sunday School room and re-recorded all 3 sermons. So one would think that the re-recorded sermons would be uploaded to our web site and all would be good. Well, one would be wrong!

Apparently, I had forgotten to turn off a police scanner app on the phone on which I was recording the sermons on ... so as I doing a quick check of the quality of the recordings, I can hear the police scanner in the background!!!

All of the recordings had to be deleted and now I'm going to have to re-re-record all three sermons again! But this time I'll double check to make sure all backgroung apps are closed!

I Remain,
Pastor Steve   

Sunday, January 07, 2018

Say It Now!

A very dear friend of mine suddenly and without any real warning lost his wife not very long ago. she was sick but no one had a clue that this "illness" would end in her sudden death.

I was able to attend her visitation and memorial service, it was a blessing to be with all of the people that loved her as well as her devastated husband. Although I used the term devastated, her husband lead her memorial service showing an internal fortitude that few men could have mustard!

The phrase I heard more than once was "I wish I could talk to her one more time." That is so often true! After someone dies our thought is often, "I wish I could talk to them one more time!" "I wish I could tell them of their impact on my life!" "What they really mean to me!"

So my point is simply this  ... WHY WAIT?!?!?!

Pick up a phone and call them! Send a text or an email, even a snail mail letter! But whatever you do ... Say it now! Do not wait, let those who mean the most to you know now!

Just my thoughts ... That's the way I see it!

I Remain,
Pastor Steve