Thursday, October 30, 2008

W.O.W. Weekend


Yes, I know, it's been a while. I have REALLY been busy. Since we last "blogged" there have been a great host of transitions. One of the biggest things on my plate has been the ongoing renovation project at our church. We have basically given the interior of our facility a TOTAL face lift. The greatest "burden" (if you will call it that) is that much of it has been on my shoulders. I am somewhat a "Jack of All Trades" and during Spring Break of this year I decided it was time to change things up and bring our facility into the New Millennium. The aim was to incorporate decor, technology, spaces that would be more user-friendly in our attempts at relevant ministry. When we started the space was ill-managed, out dated, and in poor repair (basically). For example, the carpets were 1970's orange along with complete wood paneling in the entire building. We knocked out walls, yanked out paneling, ripped up carpet, gutted out the sound system, etc. Needless to say; it has been an expensive and exhausting time for myself and the congregation. However, the potential is proving to be encouraging.
(Pictures coming soon)

On this weekend we embark upon the Annual Celebration of our W.O.W. Ministry. (Women of Wisdom) I am especially excited because one of my preaching proteges', and subsequent predecessor at the church in the name of Rev. James R. Miller will be the special 3:00pm guest. I am looking forward to a wonderful weekend of worship, word, and fellowship as he shares with us. It will also be the first time he sees the place since we went "crazy" changing EVERYTHING. It will be interesting to get his inventory of the changes. I respect his opinion. He has always offered great suggestions and encouragement as relates to my ministry.

I ask the prayers of all my blog family as we attempt to return to some degree of normalcy. There are a LOAD of things I want to share about the last several weeks and am sure we will find the time in the coming days.

God Bless...

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

God Hears and Answers Prayer

As you know, per the post on yesterday, I have been thoroughly engaged in prayer for several "brothers" that have been heavy on my heart.

Well, of that group of brothers, one of them that has been a part of my fervent devotion and prayer has been my biological brother in the name of Keith L. Pullam. Today, October 8th, happens to be the day that he celebrates his 33rd birthday. The Lord allowed me to be in much missed fellowship with him on yesterday and today. Yesterday he came by the church to speak with my father and as result we ended up going to Cracker Barrel together to have some time of catching up and kicking back. The Lord is SO faithful. While he was there at the church, the Lord prompted me to get on the piano and just TRY to conjure up some of the gospel tunes we used to play "back in the day." As result, Keith got on the drums. It has been years since we had played together and we BOTH struggled to get through the songs. But, the worth of that time spoke VOLUMES to my heart. I was just SO glad and appreciative that God had us catch a glimpse of how it "used to be."

Well... As a result of this special time I commented to Keith that we were actually in NEED of a drummer to "help out" a bit. Furthermore I suggested that he stop by on tonight at 8:15pm to sit in on rehearsal. 6:45pm, I got to the church. (rushed to make my handout copies for bible study) Taught bible study (had a wonderful time in our Spiritual Leadership series part 4). Was meeting and greeting people at the close of bible study, looked up and what do you know? Keith was hugging and greeting people from the congregation. I know it may NOT be such a big deal to YOU, but if you knew the story it was a certain VICTORY... He REALLY CAME, is all I could think. He greeted Bro. Evans, our church musician/director, and mounted the drums. YES, he is still very rusty after years of NOT playing. But, it was MUSIC to my ears.

He promised/pledged to be there on Sunday. THANK YOU LORD for being the "lifter up of my head." God is so AWESOME. I know that this is just one simple step. But, the Lord knows how I have toiled in prayer for my brother Keith and that He would allow us to be yoked together in ministry.

I ask the prayers of my entire blog family that the Lord will allow me insight to offer the correct mixture of love and leadership to hopefully see a rekindling of Keith's fire and desire for the Lord and Kingdom work.


Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Am I My Brother's Keeper?

I have a couple of brothers that have been very strongly in my heart and mind now for the last couple of weeks. They are much like me but, at the same time, so different. I have often, and still to this day, been misunderstood by them to be the opposite of who I really am. It seems as if the harder I strive to bridge the gap the greater it widens. How could persons that have known one another for so long and walked with each other through so much be this disconnected?

Well, I am imagining that the deeper question for me now is "why do I worry so much about it?" Am I just being to affectionate and sentimental? It would seem as if I am the only one with any real despair about the breakdown. Well... I realize that my blog is probably the least "technical" of us all. I further understand that sometimes my transparency can be frightening. I would be the first to agree that there is a very fine line between appropriate/inappropriate sharing on the blog or any other cyber-source. So, I guess I will just stop here and keep praying about the best way to extend my heart and hand to all those who come to mind right now.

Tip!!! I think it is a shame to allow others to constantly pour into, encourage, exhort, edify YOU and YOU never employ or seize the opportunity to return the expression and sentiment. (As my Dad would say, "Now that was for free.") lol

Thanks Pastor Mann... Psalm 133:1 fits here. "Behold how good and how pleasant it is for brothers to dwell together in unity."

It is in this "unity" that we find strength. As a result of a commitment to this "unity" we see, as the bible says, "iron sharpen iron." With a dedication to this "unity" we are able to have true Koinonia, which is literally carries the idea of a perpetual EXCHANGE. It's the constant giving and taking of all persons involved that make this fellowship and unity so rich. So if one always takes the position of GIVING, while the other only TAKES, there comes a lofty lopsidedness in the relationship. OH!!! I said I was gonna stop didn't I???

Kevin L. Pullam

Monday, October 06, 2008

You've Got A Big But

Greetings blogfamily. I just thought it was way passed time to say something. I will admit that church, family, school, etc. has proven to divide my attentions in such a way that blogging has been difficult at best.

On yesterday we had a wonderful time in worship. Attendance is slowly climbing and the worship atmosphere continues to grow in width and depth. Of course, I am grateful and thankful to God for this. I was led on last week toward an exposition of Romans 7:14-25. It was apparent, very early in the week, that this would be a word of challenge and exhortation to move beyond dismal into the dynamic. Of course, there are at least two theological views as relates to Paul's statements concerning his struggles. His statement "when I would to good evil is always present..." The main question becomes "was Paul speaking of his pre-salvific or post-salvific life?" Well, there are strong arguments by Augustine and other "church fathers" that suggest that there is NO WAY this could have been Paul speaking of life in his Apostolic Anointing. However, there are strong arguments based on etymological (word) study from some of the earlier Greek texts that suggest Paul was speaking in the present tense (imperfect). Wow... This was an ongoing struggle for Paul. Caught, as John Phillips says, between the "Law of Sinai" and the "Law of Sin." Paul, being as greatly statured as he was in intellect, spirituality, Godliness, etc. still admits to the constant struggle we believers have against the world, THE FLESH, and the devil. In the text he gives insight to the:

I. The Person With this Struggle

a. It's Personal Conflict (Paul's use of personal pronouns "I" and "me")
b. It's Perpetual Conflict (We get a sense that this is a constant concern)

II. The Problem of This Struggle (Noted by the threefold "for" in the text)

a. Conflict of Potential (vv. 15-17)
b. Conflict of Purpose (vv. 18-20)
c. Conflict of Principles (vv. 21-24)

III.. The Place of this Struggle

a. In my mind
b. In my members

So, I have TRIED to share the framework for the message. The Lord really blessed it and used it to challenge us all. The subject was radical, as it often is with me. "You've Got A Big But." This is because Paul says, and I'm paraphrasing, "there are things I want to do, BUT I don't do them." He then shares, "there are things I hate to do, BUT that I do." How often have we seen the people in the parishes we pastor struggle much the same way. "I would tithe...BUT." I would stay for Sunday School and go to Bible Study, BUT." I would be more faithful to the choir, BUT." I shared with the congregation that, by this message, I was led to recall that song sang back in the day by E.U. "Doin the Butt." I said, "Now realize today that I'm not talking about your b-u-T-T, but AM talking about your B-U-T. Like E.U. sang a lot of folks are 'Doin the BUT."

Well, I closed by issuing the challenge as to what kind of Christian each person would decide to be. The question is, will you invest in your MIND or your MEMBERS. Many times throughout scripture we see the Lord want us to solidify our spiritual walk and fervor by way of our MIND. "He keeps those in perfect peace who keep their MINDS fixed on Him." "Let this MIND be in you which was also in Christ Jesus." "Be not conformed to this world but be transformed by the renewing of you're MIND." Grandma used to say, "Walking and talking with my MIND stayed on Jesus." Whereas investing all of your stock into your MEMBERS is a dead end. Matter of fact, James asks the question in Chapter 4 verse 1 of his book to the church, "where do you think the battles and struggles come from amongst you (the church), is it not from the things waring in your MEMBERS?" Just as Jesus said to Nicodemus, "that which is born of the flesh is of the flesh, that which is born of the spirit is spirit..." As Paul, we need to recognize the POTENTIAL to do evil even when we have good intentions.

Thesis: Don't cancel out the good that you "would do" with your but.

So, we ALL got Big Buts... Can I close by telling you about my Big But...

...even the youths shall faint and get weary and the young men shall utterly fall,
BUT they that wait upon the Lord shall renew their stregnth... (Isaiah 40:28-31)
There's the POWER of Christ

...Satan has desired to have you that he may sift you as wheat, BUT I have prayed for you... ( Luke 22:31-32)
There's the PRAYER of Christ

BUT my God shall supply all my need according to His riches in glory. (Phil. 4:19)
There's the PROVIDENCE of Christ

Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me. I once was lost BUT now I'm found, was blind BUT now I see.
There's the PARDON of Christ

And... (here we go Dad) One Friday evening, He went to Calvary's cross... He died, BUT He didn't stay dead. He died on Friday, BUT He rose on Sunday.
There's the PASSION, PAIN, and PREEMINENCE of Christ

So, please be patient with me. The next time somebody tries to tell you about this little, country, broke down preacher saying, "yeah I used to know him back in the day." You tell'em "didn't you know, Pastor Pullam got a Big But."

Ephesians 2:1- "As for YOU, YOU were dead in sins and trespasses..." v. 4- BUT God who is rich in mercy... " So, with God, I'm thankful that we got this "Big But" working in our favor.

God Be Praised

Friday, October 03, 2008

Caught at a Crossroad

As my blogfamily will recall, I was in revival this time last week. The Lord was really good and blessed that effort in a mighty way. So much so that something happened. I didn't come back to Corpus Christi the same person, pastor, parent, etc. As I spent my days there in the room in solitude and silence, (purposefully) I heard from the Lord on so many areas of my life and ministry. This leaves me at an incredible place of prayer and reevaluation. There are things that I have always prayed the Lord would allow me to change, do, and be. Now... I believe He has actually begun to answer and give direction in some of those matters. This is where I must be totally honest. I am a bit rattled and shaken about some of the things I feel God beckoning me toward. I just ask your prayers that the Lord will give me the clarity and conviction I need to step boldly in faith toward whatever it is HE calls me to do next.

Your Blogbrother,