Tag Archives: #christian

Excerpts from sermon on 11/13/16, “Don’t Worry”

Robin shivering in the snow, perched on a small branchOur nation has been in upheaval because of an election that [was] riddled with contention. It proved to be unusual. It [was] an election that left many people heart broken, hurting, pained, dejected, concerned and, most of all, full of worry. There was something in the circumstances that caused their senses to be enraged and even excessively fearful. There is rage in the land.  There is suspense in the land. There is insecurity in the land. There is unpredictability in our land. What can you say when you are in the midst of upheaval and you too feel the pain of worry?

In Matthew 6:25 it was Jesus who said, “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes?” Worry by its very nature is intended to be bothersome, to get our juices flowing in a negative non-productive way. But worry never offers us a solution. It just keeps us in a cycle of fear, insecurity and uncertainty. Why would God make us with a capacity to worry? How can the bible and going to church on Sundays remedy this sense of anxiety and angst? What must I do when someone doesn’t have the same sensitivity and concern for humanity as I do? The government cannot rescue you or help you. There is no need of going to stand in long lines, dealing with bureaucracy, trying to get some assistance. The assistance we need now is greater than anything this world can give. Jesus was used to people worrying because everywhere he went they wanted something from him. Some folks worry if they’ll have children. Some folks worry whether they’ll be able to pay rent or have a place to live. Jesus came to help people just like [us] who had a host of worries.

The danger of having so much worry is that it is a distraction from being who you are called to be. God never made us to worry. He made us to depend on him for every worry. And if you have him, why worry? [The past] election introduced to us again that worry is a plague on our land, whether people admit it or not. The whole world is worried. Whatever the issue is, crisis always introduces worry. [Jesus] says in verse 26, “Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?” In other words, there are things all around you that God is taking care of. If you only watch how God is curing and taking care of other people just like you, maybe you can stop your worry.

Our thoughts were never designed to be worldly. The thoughts that you and I have are not the original thoughts that God had for us. Our thoughts were never to be for mamman, but all our thoughts were supposed to be on the kingdom. The world is designed to make you worry and concerned about what you don’t have compared to what someone else [does have]. You focus on you, and you miss glory. When you want to get out of a dilemma, escape what your mind is thinking about and turn your thoughts to him who can cure whatever the problem is. We put the intangible invisible kingdom out of our thoughts because it does not respond to our needs as immediately as material, natural resources do. We always dismiss God for things that we hear, see, taste with our senses; but, these are nothing more than your emotions getting the best of you. According to your character, God has been better to you than you deserve. If your thinking is so shallow that you can’t see God through the shadows, you are going to miss out and have worry in your life.

When God made Adam and Eve, they had an ideal living environment: ideal circumstances, no problems, no disappointments everything was perfected. God says of every tree in the garden you may freely eat. But of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, of God and mammon, do not eat. The devil understood the pristine nature of Adam and Eve’s thought processes. They didn’t know anybody but God. The devil knew that if he could only get in Eve’s mind, he’d have her. He enticed her with food. Why do you dismiss him and invite everyone else in your thought life? Whenever you are excessive about the immense concerns in this world, it suggests that you have eaten from that tree. It suggests that you have taken a bite from the tree of knowledge. It wasn’t good knowledge it was knowledge from evil. Anytime you partake of that tree, you will worry. [Don’t miss the forest for the trees.] Look beyond and look to Him who makes mountains and hillsides, ways out of no ways, food on your table, wakes you up every day. When you look to Him–when you decide to give up the material for the superlative–then you get closer to putting off your worration. There is a wave of change that is coming, and you need to be anchored in the ship of Zion.

Be joyful, be merry and don’t worry!

Best regards and many blessings to you and yours,

The All Nations Baptist Church Family

 

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Finding Freedom: Through Thick & Thin

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Great God, oh mighty! Lord, have mercy! July is supposed to be a month where America celebrates its independence and a value system that is anchored in freedom. However over the past 31 days, we have experienced a resurgence of white supremacy groups as they fight to persevere the racist legacy of the confederate flag, increasing skepticism towards law enforcement agencies as wide-spread misconduct looms amid the investigation of Sandra Bland’s untimely death , and mass shootings, such as that which occurred in the theater in Lafayette, are becoming common-place, tabloid fodder. Not to mention people endure turmoil that doesn’t make news headlines everyday. Unfortunately, it would seem, that America is imprisoned by its own history, stuck in a cyclical culture of corruption, a thick fog that enables hypocrisy and prevents the actualization of the pioneering intention for American to be a City upon a Hill. Jesus, be a fence!

The Sermon on the Mount - Matthew 5-7

The Sermon on the Mount – Matthew 5-7

The concept of America being a beacon of light to the rest of the world was borrowed from Jesus Christ’s “Sermon on the Mount”  told over days to Jews, Gentiles, Christians and political leaders on a hillside near Capernaum. During his sermon, Jesus compares believers to the salt of the Earth and the light of the world: “You are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hidden,” he said (Matthew 5:14). While this country was built upon the slavery and exploitation of marginalized ethnic groups, America’s  democratic government made it seem exceptional to the rest of the world.

However today, America’s concept of freedom may have transformed into wide-spread individualization and materialism. In Ecclesiastes 1:9 King Solomon extols of the meaninglessness of a life focused on prosperity without God. He professes, “What has been will be again, what has been done will be done again; there is nothing new under the sun.” During biblical times, just as today, greed, pride and prejudice permeated society. To his disciples in the new testament, Jesus asks, “For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul?” (Mark 8:36) Jesus teaches that succumbing to worldly pleasures makes one vulnerable to society’s maleficence and denies he or she the opportunity to be a light to the world in the glorious kingdom of God.

There were many people that tried to deny Jesus Christ’s divinity and proclaimed his teachings heresy. Saul, whose names became Paul after his conversion, was one of these men. Saul “breathed murderous threats” against Jesus, consequently offending God. One day Jesus spoke to him and gave him instructions to journey to Damascus. After this encounter Saul’s sight was gone but, he followed through with God’s plan. Late Jesus sent his disciple, Ananias, to restore his sight and fill him with the Holy Spirit. Miraculously his sight was restored. He became a believer and an instrument to spread the gospel. He proved to be a faithful servant of the Lord spreading light throughout the land.

Saul’s story illustrates that the murky gloom of ritualistic traditions and mob mentality – often endorsed by various societal institutions- can distort the light of the Holy Spirit. How can one break free of society’s bondage and emerge from the darkness? Where can one find strength to hang on through the thick and thin? Throughout history the light of God has always existed whether man sought to be in the Lord’s presence or not. When explaining the significance of the birth of Christ, John the Baptist notes “The light shines in the darkness but the darkness has not understood it” (John 1:6) Because of man’s denial, God was compelled to send his only begotten son. Probably one of the most important scriptures to understanding the Christian faith is when Jesus reveals, “I am the way and the truth and the life” (John 4:16).

So how can one find freedom? Be faithful, be renewed, be a light.

God bless,

All Nations Baptist Church

DC Rallies Against Police Brutality

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Over two weeks after Michael Brown was shot and killed by police officer, Darren Wilson, Ferguson, Missouri has finally settled from a melee, which erupted throughout the city. Peaceful protests have spread from this community– which was virtually off of the map until the recent tragedy– across the world. “Hands up, don’t shoot” is the mantra, #dontshoot is the soundbite.

While Michael Brown’s death is at the forefront of our minds, many people are recognizing a larger social paradigm under which the rate of police brutality has, seemingly, increased and the value of human life has declined. While a comprehensive collection of statistics on the abuse of power by law enforcement agents is most likely a good sociological endeavor, the facts remain that there is a growing mistrust of law enforcement among US citizens, social media being the best resource for a collection of data on this matter. The question becomes how can Americans regain their trust in the people that are charged with protecting their most basic human rights and physical safety? The answer: we must demand change.

In the nation’s capitol local organizations have rallied against unlawful police enforcement tactics and brutality. This past Friday, All Nation’s own Pastor, Reverend Dr. James Coleman was a guest speaker on the radio show, Think On These Things, hosted by Lyndia Grant, giving a poignant commentary on how social justice can be restored in Ferguson as well as nationally.

In his letter to the Romans, the Apostle Paul stated, “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer” (Romans 12:12). Everyone should feel empowered to share their perspective and participate in peaceful efforts to ensure that justice is won for any citizen who has ever been abused, harassed, or victimized by the police. It may not be immediate and swift, but it can not happen without the love, faith and commitment of caring individuals. For more information on opportunities to get involved, click below.

Black Youth Project 100

CODEPINK: Women for Peace

Rally for Justice Against Police Brutality

Blessings from our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ,

All Nations Baptist Church

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