The Navigator: 7.30.2020

THIS SUNDAY, 8/2

Preacher:  Nick

Primary Text:  Judges 6-7; The God who uses Nobodies

 

Partner with our Missions Team in blessing both Wester and Williams Elementary Schools.  Bring one or more items from the list below to the Welcome Center between July 19th and August 9th.

  • Kleenex
  • Gallon-sized Ziploc Bags
  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Paper Towels
  • Crayons
  • Glue Sticks
  • Disinfectant Wipes
  • Coffee & Creamer (for the teachers)

 

Our youth & children’s ministries will resume on Sunday, August 23rd.

 

LORD, PLEASE SPEAK TO ME!  (He is.)

“So many are looking for special revelation from God while it sits on their shelves gathering dust.” – Burk Parsons

 

For the Kingdom

I, along with Dana Kluzek & Mike Lewis, have met with our Finance Team to present and discuss steps for moving forward with our fast-approaching Debt Retirement campaign.  What I have personally seen in scripture, as well as discussed with pastor friends of mine, is very exciting.  I am convicted that we will not only pay off our new-construction debt early, but quickly.  More on this in next week’s Navigator.

 

The following mid-week opportunities for learning will begin Aug. 26th, 6:30pm

The Gospel of John – Nick Watts – worship center

GriefShare – Tom & Diane Heath – 209

 

For a list of Search Team members, or to know the steps for communicating with the Team, please see click herePray for them!

 

ENCOURAGEMENT

Pastor Lowrie’s most recent sermon can be viewed here.

My most recent Table Talk can be viewed hereHow God called me into Ministry

 

QUOTES of the WEEK

And..,

“What one generation tolerates, the next generation will embrace.” ― John Wesley

 

LAUGHTER IS GOOD MEDICINE

And…,

A funny thing happened while I was preaching in Kerrville.  During some free time I was convicted that people needed something to laugh about in this bad-news-filled society in which we find ourselves.  The home I stayed in had a piano in my bedroom.   So, I wrote a quick parody of Neil Diamond’s ‘Sweet Caroline’ called ‘Sweet Quarantine’, recorded it and posted it on my Facebook page.

Well, apparently a lot of people needed a laugh because it’s now been viewed over 12 thousand times on Facebook.  Interestingly, it was even shared by Christy Hartin from KCBD Lubbock. (And she shared that I was one of the pastors at BHBC.  You’re welcome for the free publicity.)  Enjoy…

SOUL FOOD:  ‘Worshiptainment’

Warnings for churches who begin to lose their way.  Read the blog here.

 

Soli Deo Gloria, Nick

The Navigator: 7.16.2020

NOTE:  Due to me preaching a Youth Camp next week, the next Navigator will be published on July 30th.

THIS SUNDAY, 7/19

Regular schedule

 

LOCAL MISSIONS: SCHOOL SUPPLIES

Partner with our Missions Team in blessing both Wester and Williams Elementary Schools.  Bring one or more items from the list below to the Welcome Center between July 19th and August 9th.

  • Kleenex
  • Gallon-sized Ziploc Bags
  • Hand Sanitizer
  • Paper Towels
  • Crayons
  • Glue Sticks
  • Disinfectant Wipes
  • Coffee & Creamer (for the teachers)

 

For a list of Search Team members please see click herePray for them!

Chairman, Michael Dain, will be bringing a report in both worship services this Sunday, July 19th.

Should you have pastoral recommendations, questions, concerns, etc., you can email the Search Team at pastor@baconheights.com.  Your email will be forwarded to chairman, Michael Dain, who will, in turn, communicate your email to the team.

 

CELEBRATING KINGDOM WORK

As often as I am aware, I want to remind you that God is very much at work during this strange season of life here on planet earth.

This past Tuesday at Staff Meeting, Dana Kluzek was sharing how defeated Children’s Ministers around the country feel at the moment with having to cancel VBS, Backyard Bible Clubs, and related summer events.  (It’s easy to get discouraged in ministry.  The devil makes sure of it.)

But then she shared something quite extraordinary.  She said,

A lady who cleans our church building during the week noticed VBS materials on the Children’s Ministry display table just off the Commons. (Dana had made resources available to all who could safely implement them either at home or in their neighborhoods.)  The lady took a kit home for her grandkids and the children in her neighborhood and led a week-long Bible Club in her neighborhood, teaching children about Christ!

Jesus said, “My father is always working…”

 

CREATIVE CHRIST COMMUNITY

Speaking of these strange days, many individuals and/or families are restricted to their homes.  Always be available to help families learn how to have worship in their own home.  Of course, with the advent of modern technology, even people who live alone can enjoy online Christian community.  A building is not the church, the Body is.

 

CHRISTIANITY?  I WOULDN’T BET AGAINST IT

When I see a quasi-conservative article from the ultra-liberal Huffington Post that actually presents the Christian faith in a favorable light I get a little curious. I’m glad I read this one (first published in 2016, updated in 2017.)

Excellent food-for-thought for thinkers like myself who apply brutal honesty to the evidence and rationale from all sides of an argument.

The book referred to in this article is by Michael Rota (PhD, Saint Louis University), associate professor of philosophy at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota. He was a post-doctoral fellow at Harvard from 2006-2007, and he is the author of several academic articles in philosophy and philosophical theology.

The article’s author, Keith Hess, misunderstands Pascal’s famous wager, stating the wager is between Christianity and atheism only. He offers an argument stating, should I choose to believe in God, which God do I choose? The God of Christianity? Islam? Judaism? And so on.

But, Hess, along with others who try to pass off Pascal’s wager as flawed, fail to understand the obvious:  Pascal’s wager is more focused. His wager is one’s choosing to embrace the Christian faith (the God of the Bible) vs. all other faith worldviews.

Short article. You can read it here.  nw

 

PRAYING FOR A CURE

Encouraging news.  Read it here.   And here.

 

ENCOURAGEMENT

Pastor Lowrie’s most recent sermon can be viewed here. The Power of Praise

My most recent Table Talk can be viewed here. How I Came to Faith in Christ

 

PRAYERS APPRECIATED

As I noted last week, I will again be preaching at FBC, Kerrville, this coming Sunday, 7/19, in both of their worship services.  However, additionally, I will be preaching their Youth Camp on Monday through Wednesday.  Finally, I will drive to Austin to officiate a wedding on Thursday and Friday before returning to Kerrville to preach again on July 26th.  Only the Holy Spirit can bring life-change.  And that is always my goal when I teach and preach.  I covet your prayers.

 

QUOTE of the WEEK

And…

“If you are thinking of being a Christian, I warn you – you are embarking on something that is going to take the whole of you.” – C.S. Lewis

One more? 

Laughing is good exercise.  It’s like jogging on the inside.

 

LAUGHTER IS GOOD MEDICINE

I love this photo!  The wonder of a child.  Her face is very much like mine was when Braums opened here in Lubbock.

 

SOUL FOOD:  The Breath of a Buffalo in Wintertime

God has given us one life.  Don’t waste it.  Read my blog here.

 

QUARTERLY BUSINESS MEETING:  Sunday evening, 7/26; 5pm

MOST RECENT BHBC E-NEWS can be viewed Friday, 7/17, by clicking here.

 

Soli Deo Gloria, Nick

The Navigator: 7.9.2020

THIS SUNDAY, 7/12

Back to our regular schedule.

 

POLICY ON WEARING MASKS – BHBC’s official statement:

Bacon Heights Baptist Church will comply with Governor Abbot’s executive order to use a face covering in public.  Please wear a face covering in this facility.

Masks are available at doors 1, 2, and 3 at no cost to you.

The executive order allows for masks to be removed when you are:

  • Attending a worship service
  • Attending Sunday School

 

PROTOCOL FOR COVID-POSITIVE CASES

Leadership has recommended the following steps should you discover a COVID-positive case who has been in contact, on campus, with other BHBC members:

1. Confirm the accuracy of the news with the actual person suspected of testing positive.

2. Contact the church office.   We will notify membership of a positively identified case but will not, without the person’s permission, identify them by name.

3. Contact your class immediately if that person has been attending your class.

We do know of BHBC members who have tested positive.  But, they have not been in contact with other BHBC members here on campus.

 

I’M OUT PREACHING the NEXT THREE SUNDAYS

As I announced this past Sunday morning, I have been invited to preach three successive Sundays at First Baptist Church, Kerrville, TX.  I shared with our Personnel Team that if I didn’t love to preach, teach and exposit scripture so very much I would not have entertained an invitation to be out three straight Sundays.

That said, since we are in the most capable hands of DL Lowrie and our outstanding staff, our Personnel Team approved and supported my absence.

I will be in Kerrville July 12, 19 & 26 (but in Lubbock during the weekdays). So, pray for me that Christ would be lifted up and, as he promised, draw all people to him.

 

DO YOU KNOW ANYONE WHO NEEDS SOME COMPANY?

This past Tuesday during Staff Meeting, I asked the staff how they were doing.  These days of all-things-COVID can be surprisingly difficult.  (Professional Counselors will tell you a new term has emerged called ‘COVID Depression’.)

I wanted to know if anyone on our staff was struggling with discouragement, loneliness or fear and/or anxiety.  We had a good time of sharing and prayer.

That led to further discussion about people at BHBC who may be struggling in similar ways.  I dropped in on Sonshiner Choir rehearsal on Tuesday and told them what I would like to tell you here:

There is a biblical principle called ‘the ministry of presence.’ If you – or someone you know – just needs some company and interaction with someone who loves them and cares about them would you let us know?  We will immediately contact that person and set up an appointment to spend some time with them.

From prison, a lonely and weary Paul wrote to Philemon:

“I do wish, brother, that I may have some benefit from you in the Lord; refresh my heart in Christ.”

Our goal and hope is to be used in the same way.

 

DON’T STOP SHEPHERDING YOUR FLOCK

Per my entry immediately above, please continue to check on your ‘sheep’.  I pray daily for a vaccine so people can safely connect with one another again.

The human touch is an innate need for us all.  Sheep need a shepherd.

 

For a list of Search Team members please see last week’s NavigatorPray for them!

They are presently meeting on Monday evenings.  I visited with chairman, Michael Dain, and the following instructions are approved by the Search Team:

Should you have pastoral recommendations, questions, concerns, etc., you can email the Search Team at pastor@baconheights.com.  Your email will be forwarded to chairman, Michael Dain, who will, in turn, communicate your email to the team.

 

HOW TO PRAY WITHOUT CEASING

We know the command like the back of our hand:

“pray without ceasing”,…

What does that mean, exactly?  Good question.

It means to be persistent.

Linked here for you is a solid commentary on what it means to pray without ceasing, offering practical counsel to help us pray longer and more consistently.  Read the article here.

 

ENCOURAGEMENT

Pastor Lowrie’s most recent sermon can be viewed here.

My most recent Table Talk from Hosea can be viewed here.

 

QUOTE of the WEEK

“We enter the starting blocks of life not knowing the length of the race. Our life may be a sprint or a marathon. We are not told in advance. All we can decide is how we will run.”Eric Liddell; Scottish Athlete; Winner of 400 Meters, 1924 Olympics; Lead character in the movie, Chariots of Fire.

And,…

 

LAUGHTER IS GOOD MEDICINE

Comedian, Jim Gaffigan, on ‘parenting’: (he has five children)

“The only difference between riding a tandem bike with your 8 yr old and dragging a dead body is nothing.”

“My 4 yr old son gave me a hand-made card for Father’s Day.  Maybe for Christmas I’ll draw him a picture of some toys.”

“Look, you lost a tooth.  Congratulations.  Enjoy looking like a hillbilly.  Here’s a dollar.”

“The hardest part of parenting is when I’m with my kids.”
“People get burned out in big families, you can even see it in the naming of children. It’s always like, the first kid, ‘You were named after Grandma.’ The fourth kid,‘“You were named after a sandwich I had. Now get your brother, Reuben.’”

 

And, speaking of children…

 

SOUL FOOD:  It’s Still the Cross

We are ‘bent’ (to borrow a term used by C.S. Lewis) toward forgetting what is true.  How?  By becoming distracted by, as when Peter began sinking while walking on the Sea of Galilee, focusing on the storm rather than the Lord.

Only the Cross – not politicians, media, etc. – has the power to heal our land.  And if we focus too much on politicians and media we can miss what God is doing throughout our world, right now.  Read my blog here.


ON the HORIZON:  Quarterly Business Meeting – Sunday, July 26th

The new BHBC E-news will be posted on Friday, July 10th.  You can view it here.

 

For the Cross and the Empty Tomb, Nick

The Navigator: 7.2.2020

 

THIS SUNDAY, JULY 5th:  COMBINED SUNDAY SCHOOL & WORSHIP

All Sunday School classes will meet at 9:15.  Combined worship service at 10:45.

Classroom assignments for July 5th:  (NA indicates class is not yet meeting on campus)

Open Door – Student Center

Duncan A & B – FLC

Agape-108

Ladies’ Class – will combine with Open Door

Special Friends – 110

Travelers – 209

Wellspring – 210

Singles – 211

The Village – NA

Base Camp – 215

Generations – 216

Young Adult – NA

University – NA

Transitions – 219

 

PASTOR SEARCH TEAM MEMBERS & ALTERNATES – Pray for them!

BHBC has affirmed a total of 10 members for our Search Team:  4 from each worship service will serve with 2 ex officio members.  Additionally, an alternate was elected representing each worship service.

Representing 9:15am Worship Service:

Kathy Clark (Secretary); Mike Smith; Ray Swearingen; Gib Weaver (Vice Chairman)

Alternate:  Larry Vialle

Representing 10:45am Worship Service:

Michael Dain (Chairman); April Gamble; John Gardner; Chris Slayton

Alternate: Shannon Beeles

Ex Officio Members: 

David Barker (Chairman of Deacons); Clint Hutcheson (Chairman of Personnel)

***NOTE:  Alternates will attend all meetings but have no voting privileges.

 

COVID RELAUNCH UPDATE

Face Masks:  Just a moment ago, Governor Abbott issued a mandate stating all Texans must wear face masks when in public places, with a few exceptions.  You can read the entire KCBD article, which includes the exceptions, here.  The 9th exception relates to churches.  Erring on the side of caution, BHBC will be asking all attendees to wear a mask.

As stated in the last Navigator, due to the Governors’ (and Lubbock’s) slowing down of reopening, coupled with the spike in local positive testing, both Youth and Children’s activities will not resume on July 12th as originally stated.

 

JESUS WAS NO SOCIALIST

Please read my blog here.  Mankind has, since the beginning of time, been desperately trying to form-fit Jesus into human agendas.  A mature and careful study of scripture prevents us from being deceived by cleverly worded arguments that sound right, but are completely wrong.

In my blog I reference a solid article.  Here’s an excerpt:

Jesus taught people to be of generous spirit, to care for their families, to help the poor, to assist widows and orphans, to exhibit kindness, and to maintain the highest character. You can translate all that into the dirty business of coercive, vote-buying, politically driven redistribution schemes only if you read the Bible without pay­ing attentionor if you’re willing to distort Jesus’s teachings to advance a political agenda.

 

ENCOURAGEMENT

Pastor Lowrie’s Shepherd’s Heart:

Our worship will come on the day after the 4th, but it will not be too late to consider the plight of our nation, nor to consider a hope that God has given to us. I would encourage you to bring the whole family as we meet in one time of worship for the whole family. The musicians will bless us. But it will not be just right without you.
Your search committee did not lose any time—they had their first meeting on Sunday evening. They are taking this responsibility very seriously. But for them to be at their best, they need our prayers. I am asking God to keep them full of faith, the Spirit, and wisdom as He did the leaders in Acts 6. Remember last Sunday: LET US LOVE ONE ANOTHER! Love is the unmistakable evidence of God’s presence and work among us.
Blessings! D. L.

 

Pastor Lowrie’s most recent sermon can be viewed here.

My most recent Table Talk from 1 Peter 3:15 can be viewed here.

 

QUOTE of the WEEK

Leave it to Chesterton to, like a laser, get to the heart of a matter:
“The thing I hate about an argument is that it always interrupts a discussion.” ~ G.K. Chesterton
And,…

“We can no more catch a hurricane in a shrimp net or Niagara Falls in a coffee cup than we can grasp the infinity of [God and his love for us].” – Brennan Manning

Oh, ok – one more. 🙂

“Aslan,” said Lucy, “you’re bigger.”
“That is because you are older, little one,” answered Aslan.
“Not because you are?”
“I am not. But every year you grow, you will find me bigger.”
(C.S. Lewis’ ‘Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian.’)
Commentary:  What Lewis is portraying here is the direct correlation between one’s spiritual growth and one’s view of God. As author/theologian, Rowan Williams, comments, “The more [Lucy] develops [her faith in Aslan], the more there is to see and know of Aslan.” Translation: as we grow in our Christian faith, we see Truth more clearly; our view of God deepens as much as it widens. For Narnia, Nick

 

 

LAUGHTER IS GOOD MEDICINE

Based on our current national state of affairs…

And, a bonus…

 

SOUL FOOD:  Has God Surrendered His Throne? (Not even close.)

The world (our nation, in particular) appears to be out of control.  Both Paul and Peter often included the phrase in their letters, “In way of reminder…”  God knows that we are in constant need of being reminded of what is true.  Permit me to encourage you by reminding you of what is true.  Read my blog here.

Most recent BHBC E-News.

Soli Deo Gloria, Nick