Archive for Uncategorized

Middle School Camp


JUNE 29 – JULY 3

LOCATION: Grand Lake Baptist Assembly

COST: $125

This camp is open to all 6th and 7th graders. There will be a Parent/Camper meeting on June 24 at 7:15 pm in the ATTIC.

Please fill out and turn in this form along with your payment to register for camp: Middle School Registration 2015

Spring Bible Study Schedule

Session 1-2: 6-9pm Saturday.

Session 3: 9:30am Sunday.

Session 4: 11:00am Sunday.

Session 5: 6:00pm Sunday.

“Apologetics on Fire” Conference Schedule

9:30 – Session 1

11:00 – Session 2 (Youth – Adults)

4:30 – Session 3

5:15 – Dinner

6:00 – Session 4

First Five on The Day of Hope with Lance Lang

hopeI don’t blog very often, but when I do…I always give my first five thoughts on the subject. Here is my First Five on yesterday’s “Day of Hope” with Lance Lang.

1. Every person is broken.

All of us. Me. You. The most perfect person you can think of. A hot mess. Sin has pressed its ugliness into every one of us. It just comes out in different ways. Thanks Adam and Eve! Really, for me, the thanks goes to…me. I can get it jacked up on anything at anytime. I am a sinner.

2. Every person tries to hide brokenness.

None of us likes to be called out or exposed. Especially church folks. So we hide our brokenness and sin. We put on a mask and play the game. Play acting. Bible word: Hypocrite. Love it when people tell me they don’t want to go to church because of hypocrites. I always tell them to come join the club. It’s their own way of hiding brokenness.

3. Hiding brokenness perpetuates the pain.

Our sin will find us out. Every.stinking.time. It just eventually oozes out. Trying to hide our sin and play like we have it all under control only causes the pain to grow more intense and last longer. Don’t worry. You’ll be at the end of your rope…the bottom of the barrel…pretty soon. The old saying “Confession is good for the soul” is not just good advice – it is Bible counsel to all of us.

4. God loves broken people.

David. Peter. Moses. Paul. And every other person God encountered in the Scripture. You are in good company. But these people did not just remain messed up by resigning themselves with “Oh well, I am just a sinner.” They encountered God. And God loved them. Often by correcting them. Never by overlooking their transgressions. And He loves you too. Really loves you.

5. God’s love for broken people compelled Him to do something about sin.

For most of you who read this, it will sound all too familiar. The Son of God. Perfect life. Passover. Lamb of God. Gruesome death. Veil torn in two. Sacrifice. Substitute. Empty Tomb. Believe. Faith. Trust. It all equals this one thing when it comes down to this First Five. Hope. God transforms broken, sinful lives into restored, resurrected, new creations.

Lance Lang reminded us that there is HOPE. You know my weekly blessing. Romans 15:13Now, may the God of HOPE fill you with joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in HOPE. It’s not just Lance’s story. It’s your story. Just as he reminded us of HOPE, you go tell your story and remind them there is hope for them too.

With Great Hope,


First Five: Why My Worldview Compelled Me to Vote

Election Day! I have my sticker on! I hope you have voted as well. Here are my First Five thoughts on why my Christian/Biblical worldview compels me to vote.

1. As a Christian I vote because of my faith.
Christians cannot separate politics and faith. Following Christ permeates every area of my life. That is just the way it is for disciples. Because of the cross and resurrection of Christ, I see EVERYTHING differently than I did before. Even politics. Especially politics. I vote because of my faith. This sets the stage for my other four thoughts.

2. As a Christian with a Biblical worldview I vote for family.
The traditional view of family has taken a beating lately. In government. In mainstream media. My goodness, even in the church. Because the hot issues of the day are items such as homosexual marriage, abortion, population control due to global warming (yes, it’s out there) and even the President’s recent comments about stay-at-home mothers, I vote.

3. As a Christian I vote for candidates who support issues from a Biblical worldview.
I realize not everyone who runs for office who claims to be a Christian actually is a Christian, or even remotely acts like one. But I know a few. And I vote for them. I voted for James Lankford today. I know James as a friend and as a colleague in ministry. I would have voted for Jim Bridenstine if I had lived in his district during his last election. When these men say they governs from his faith…well, they are the real deal. So there are people out there running for office who are seeking to influence our society because Christ is the Lord of their life.

4. As a Christian I vote because the world is a dangerous place.
ISIS. Ebola. 13 years of war. People beheaded right here in Oklahoma. I know…politicians are not the ones who make us safe. And sin is ALWAYS going to be here. And people are very sinful. But I want the people who are making our laws to understand that we live in a dangerous world. Nuff said.

5. As a Christian I vote because I want to be a part of the solution.
Everybody knows what is wrong. And anyone can complain about it. But voting is a tiny little part of doing something to make things better. For instance, on the ballot in Oklahoma today were three amendments to the Oklahoma constitution that will make life for veterans a little bit better. Thanks Oklahoma. I know we cannot fix everything.

With these being my First Five – not the only ones, but the first five that came to mind – I recognize that Christians and churches come off wrong in the public eye. Especially around political issues. But Christ did not command us to stay out of the world and its system. I just want to be salt and light. Take a stand. Live out your faith. Oh, and vote.


First Five from the BGCO State Prayer Meeting

fire Last week a few hundred people gathered at First Baptist Church Moore to pray for our nation, revival, and spiritual awakening. We worshiped and prayed for six hours. We asked God to change us, to change our nation, and to open the eyes of the lost that they might be saved through faith in the finished work of Jesus Christ. The following are the First Five thoughts I have after spending a week thinking about that prayer time:

1. God is worthy of all glory and all of our praise. God may very well by judging our nation right now. But there remains little doubt that God has granted His people mercy. We may not always understand it, but God has a glorious plan. And that glorious plan is intended for one purpose: to show the glory of God.

2. We CANNOT program revival or spiritual awakening. It must be God initiated. So we prayed and continue to pray “Come Spirit of God, fall fresh on me.”

3. We MUST repent. And I’m not talking about “THOSE immoral folks”. It’s God’s people who need to repent. Pastors and parishioners alike must be cleansed in order to be used for God’s glory. Judgement begins with the house of God.

4. We MUST pray for the lost. By name. List them. Pray for their salvation. Pray for conviction. Pray their eyes will be opened to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Pray together with other believers for the salvation of common friends. And WHEN they are saved, God will IGNITE the Church to pray for the lost. Who are you praying for? Have you written their names down? I have four names sitting on my desk. I pray for them every day and believe God will save them.

5. We MUST disciple believers. My friend Blake Gideon, pastor of FBC Edmond, recommended the book “Firefall 2.0”. It is a history of revival and spiritual awakenings. Since the time of Christ every great move of God has been fundamentally characterized by two renewals: a renewal of God’s people to fervently pray, and a renewal to gather in small groups for the purpose of discipleship. This is not Sunday School. Two or three people gathering regularly to study the Bible TOGETHER, to memorize Scripture TOGETHER, and to pray TOGETHER. Get in a group. Start a group. Not a Bible study watching a video teacher – a group that prays and memorizes and holds each other accountable and reads the Word together.

We need revival and spiritual awakening. America needs the church in America to wake up! This mess has happened on our watch. Be a part of the solution by allowing God to use you for His glory. That is my First Five.


Be An Imitator

For as long as I can remember I have tried to imitate people I admire. When I was a young boy playing baseball, it was Pete Rose. Slid head first even when coaches told me not to do that. Hustled on every play. In my backyard I imagined I was JC Watts playing quarterback for the Sooners. I even would pretend to be my dad, who I saw as the ultimate soldier.

Since becoming a Christian in high school, I have tried to imitate Jesus and other godly influences. I have failed miserably. As I read of the heart and the hope of Christ, I desire to make what He did a little bit of what I do. When your nature is changed – transformed – its just what you do. I have had several godly examples come alongside me. I often catch myself doing or saying something those great men have modeled for me. And yet I still fail miserably.

I dont imitate Pete Rose anymore – probably a good thing, right? JC Watts most recent ventures create no interest in me. I have done my time as a Soldier. No pretending there.

But I cant stop imitating Jesus and those few godly men. I fail miserably. Frequently I miss the mark. But I will never stop watching and emulating. I cant. The Gospel has changed me. My nature is different.

1 Thessalonians 1 tells us that we are changed by the power of the Gospel, the Word and the Holy Spirit. They are always linked together. They do the work of changing us into the image of Christ. I am glad I will never be the same. Changed by the good news of Jesus Christ. Watching to imitate what He and His servants do.

No more head first slides. No more wishbone. Only Christ. Who are you imitating today?pete

September 28, 2014

First Five – Together for the Gospel 2014

Laurie and I recently had the privilege of attending the Together for the Gospel conference in Louisville, Kentucky. This conference is an encouragement, primarily to preachers, but to the Church as a whole. Laurie and I had not been to a conference together in a long time. We heard great preaching, informative panel discussions on particularly relevant topics, and incredible worship. So, I want to give you my First Five on the conference. A few will have web links to some of the BEST sermons we heard (they were all great). I encourage you to listen if you can.

5. We looked for many friends from Oklahoma, but continuously found ourselves running into the “main speakers” of the conference. I stood next to David Platt in the airport in Detroit, had John Piper wave at me coming out of a restaurant, talked with Mark Dever at the hotel, Russell Moore walking to get coffee, Tom Pennington while we were walking to the bookstore (he smarted off about my OU shirt – he is an Alabama fan), and Phil Johnson while in the Zero Dollar bookstore. If you don’t know who all these people are, think of running into your favorite players from your favorite football team that you thought you would never meet – in two days.

4. But it got better than that. Laurie and I had lunch with two of our favorite people – Ted and Jerri Kersh. Ted is the pastor of South Tulsa Baptist Church and has been a mentor for me for many years (even when he didn’t know it). You know that saying “they don’t come any better than this”? Yep. That is Ted and Jerri Kersh.

3. David Platt’s sermon on prayer. Wow!

2. Ligon Duncan’s sermon on The Gospel by Numbers. Wow! You have to stick with it through the first 20 minutes, then…hold on to your seat.

1. Kevin DeYoung’s sermon on God’s Unbreakable Bible. Wow! Wow! Maybe the best sermon I have heard in the last year.

OK, so this does not include my favorite preacher John MacArthur or my favorite cultural commentator Al Mohler. Both gave incredible sermons. So did John Piper. And Mark Dever. They were all good. And…they gave us each 15 free books. But I only had room for my…First Five.


First Five – The Great Day of Service

HT Duff - He knows no excuse

Undoubtedly, the Great Day of Service has become a favorite day of the year at First Baptist Church Ponca City. Thanks to the vision of Rob Murray and the organization of French McLemore, FBC sends out more than 30 teams of workers into our community to concentrate their efforts on homes, people, and lives. We do more than pick up trash and mow lawns. We change minds. Hopefully for the glory of God and the growth of His Kingdom. We just completed our 3rd annual Great Day of Service. Our church sent out 487 people. This year 11 churches joined with us, working on over 100 homes, a school, and more than 1200 florescent yellow shirts could be seen serving throughout the community. Here is my First Five on this year’s Great Day of Service.

5. Hearing team leaders say “I have the BEST team. I can’t wait to do this again.” People bond over serving together. The leaders led their teams to serve…and they did it so well.

4. One young father excitedly reported of sharing the gospel with a resident who later came to the church for the rally. The Great Day of Service is about works AND words – the Word of Life.

3. Observing senior adults directing traffic, handing out hot dogs, holding trash bags and raking up leaves. Their example has impacted many lives. They remind us that as long as there is breath in the lungs God can use any willing vessel.

2. Seeing children and teenagers joyfully serving alongside parents and other adults. The predominantly self-absorbed attitude of the age took a right hook on the chin concerning the upcoming generations!

1. Churches working together. God must be pleased.

That’s my Great Day of Service 2014 First Five.