Getting Ready for Sunday

It is Friday January 11, 2019 and Sunday is coming.

There are many who think Sunday is just another day of the week.  It is, in fact, the first day of each week, and the day the early Christians met in remembrance of our Lord’s resurrection.

I have never tried to hide the fact that I am a follower of Jesus Christ.  I do not believe in Him because I am fearful of eternity’s fire if I do not.  I believe in Him and follow Him because He loved me, and loves me so much that He proved it.

In recent years I have grown to a place in Him that I never doubt or question His love for me.  What I do question and sometimes doubt is my love for Him.

My goal throughout every week is to Get Ready for Sunday.  The day I join with a few others to lift up the name of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in our place of worship;  singing hymns of worship and praise, praying, and to preach and hear the preaching of the word of God.

I pray that anyone who is reading this is like minded, and you are preparing yourself to meet the Lord, with those of like mind in Church on Sunday.  It will surely improve your heart, mind, and attitude through the coming week.

If you are not getting ready for Sunday you may not be ready for the day the Son returns.

God richly bless you

From the banks of Flat Creek,

`tim

Thanksgiving 2012

There is a lot of people giving thanks; and many who are not thankful to the right one.  Then there are also some who are not thankful at all, but spend their lives complaining about their life’s situation.  Is there any difference in not being thankful and being thankful, but for the wrong reason?

To that question I must answer; I do think there is a difference.  I would, however, rather be around a thankful person than a complainer; no matter why they are thankful.  Thankfulness affects your life for good, and the lives of others.

There is so much more to being thankful when you are thankful to the only One who is worthy of Thanksgiving; and that is our GOD and Saviour Jesus Christ.  He has given us all things to enjoy, be blessed, and give glory to Him.  We could not take the next breath of air, except He gives it to us; or take the next step, or receive the next beat of our heart, except by His mercy.

Our family met at my parents home on Thanksgiving Day.  My sisters, Jane, Judy, and Jill with their husbands – minus one, their children and grandchildren – a few; and my brother Steven, his wife Deanna, their two sons and two grandsons.  I am not sure of the number present, but it was above 40 I am pretty sure of that.  We had a banquet with turkey, dressing, sweet potatoes, ham, deviled eggs, cheesy cabbage, hot rolls, and for dessert pumpkin pie, chocolate pie, and others galore.

I am so thankful for my family.  God has blessed us beyond what we are deserving of, and that is because of His mercy and grace.

Thank YOU Lord for your mercy, grace, salvation and all the bountiful blessings YOU have provided us.

-tim

“Fairest Lord Jesus”

Fairest Lord Jesus

1.  Fairest Lord Jesus, Ruler of all nations,  O Thou of God and man the Son;  Thee will I cherish, Thee will I honor, Thou, my soul’s glory, joy, and crown.

2.  Fair are the meadows,  Fairer still the woodlands,  Robed in the blooming garb of spring;   Jesus is fairer,  Jesus is purer,  Who makes the woeful heart to sing.

3.  Fair is the sunshine, Fairer still the moonlight  And all the twinkling, starry host;  Jesus shines brighter, Jesus shines purer  Than all the angels heaven can boast.  A-MEN.

From the German, Seventeenth Century

From Schlesische Volkslieder, 1842

Arr. by Richard S. Willis, 1819-1900

-posted by Tim A. Blankenship

When I Survey the Wondrous Cross

“When I survey the wondrous cross, On which the Prince of glory died, My richest gain I count but loss, And pour contempt on all my pride.

Forbid it, Lord, that I should boast, Save in the death of Christ my God; All the vain things that charm me most, I sacrifice them to His blood.

See, from His head, His hands, His feet, Sorrow and love flow mingled down; Did e’er such love and sorrow meet, Or thorns compose so rich a crown.

Were the whole realm of nature mine, That were a present far to small; Love so amazing, so divine, Demands my soul, my life, my all.”

by Isaac Watts 1674-1748

and still a wonderful hymn of praise to our God and Savior Jesus Christ.

Always praising God along the banks of Flat Creek.

-Tim

Marriage and Friends

The title of today’s post is probably does not have to do with what you might think.  I learned yesterday of the importance of keeping your marriage as a top priority in your home.

I finally got around to calling a long time friend.  We had not talked in about a year.  After our conversation was over, and the phones placed back on the dock I had a lot of thinking to do.  When a couple has children the children cannot be the major event of the home.  In this day and age we live this will not be too popular to say; but when you have children the most important thing they need to see is not you keeping them busy and hopping and happy.  The greatest thing you can give your child, other than the message of Christ Jesus, is a good marriage.

Your children need to see Dad loving Mom, respecting Mom, and Mom respecting Dad.  They need to know you two are together forever.  The two of you have made a vow to God, “Until death do us part”.  Your children will grow up and leave home.  You will no longer have them in your arms, and within reach any longer.  Be glad, not sad about that; that is what growing is all about.

I have watched several homes, though not intentionally, but usually from afar.  They have majored on their children, neglected their marriage; then when the children are grown and out on their own the marriage falls apart and they divorce.  These are far too often Christian homes.

Love your children, YES!  Cherish your wife and love her like Christ loves the church and gave Himself for her.  Cherish your husband, love and respect him in the Lord.

Just a note.  Marriage can only be between a man and woman.  Anything else is perversion.

My wife and me celebrated our 38th Anniversary on July 28 and look forward to many more empty nest years together.  Have they all been smooth and trouble free?  No way.  But they have sure been good.

From the banks of Flat Creek.

-Tim

With All That’s Goin’ On

With all that’s goin’ on in the world you would think that many people would get the idea that there is God; not a god, as if one of many; but GOD.  As one who created all that is, and sustains all that is.  GOD did not just create the created order then leave it for His crowning achievement to oversee, and rule.  He came down during a time in history, and gave His life for us.

With all that’s goin’ on in the world you would think that people would open their eyes about their own righteousness; that it just doesn’t exist.  Even the most immoral people can have a good streak in them occasionally, but that sure doesn’t make them righteous.  Our good deeds won’t; maybe even cannot out weigh the bad or evil we do; no matter if we do more good than bad.  With God righteousness, goodness, doing right just doesn’t work that way.

Righteous is what God says is righteous; and that is not us.  His Son Jesus is Righteous, and He died for our unrighteousness.  He is the only Mediator between God, His Father, and humanity.  Without Him we would all perish.

With all that’s goin’ on in the world you would think that there would be a lot of repentance going on, and people calling on the name of Jesus Christ; for He is the Lord of all.

It’s time for repentance and faith; even here on the banks of Flat Creek.

-Tim

It’s Sunday Again

I like the way the weeks roll around; especially Sunday’s.  Sunday in my family has always been a day of rest and worship.  Worshipping the Lord of all creation, the Creator, is one of the greatest parts of life and living.  That is something I endeavor to do all week long.

One of the things I have said before is, “I’ve got to go to church”; and it isn’t that “I’ve got to”, but I get to go to church today.  If it ever becomes a “got to”, then going to church and worship has become nothing more than a mere religious action and it becomes a sacrament, or a necessity for salvation.  I am not saved by any good work I do, but by the grace of God, to do good works.

I pray all who are reading this will be attending the worship services in your local church; and worshipping Jesus Christ, Lord, King, Savior, Prince of peace, Creator.  Love Him. Cherish Him. Worship Him. Serve Him.  Fear Him and Him alone, and you will need to fear nothing else.

It is great honor and privilege to be able to look out our patio door and see the things He has created around us; or to step out the door and hear the sounds of His creation; and know He is watching over us all.

Part of what we hear when we step out the back door is the rolling waters of Flat Creek as it makes its way toward Table Rock Lake a few miles down stream.  Bless the LORD O, my soul.

-Tim

What I’m Hearing…

I’m hearing that my Dad will be coming home today (08/19/11).  I don’t think he has improved in the sense of being better off.  He is most likely near to going home to be with Jesus our God and Savior.  He may have some strength for the days ahead to do what he feels like doing; and he may not.

Dad is still talking of getting up to go milk the cows.  That is what he has done all his life.  Even though his health has been failing him, he has endeavored to go to the milk barn, and help my brother with the milking.  It has given him a sense of self worth, and something to do.

There is one thing I know, and that is that Dad is ready to see Jesus Christ, King of kings, Lord of lords; and to be with Him for ever and for ever.  No one can actually know that of any one else, but you can see it by the way they live; and what is in their hearts and comes out of their mouth.  That is what has come out of Dad’s heart and mouth.  His love and concern for his wife, children, grandchildren; and others too.  It hurts my Dad to see family members at odds with one another – maybe I should say angry with one another to the point of not speaking.  I also know Dad has not been perfect; and he knows that too.

I am thankful that God gave me my Dad.  I am thankful that God has blessed me with the family given me.  I pray that I can be as faithful to God, and His Church as my Dad has been.

Like I said above,  I hear that Dad is coming home today.  He will be back near the banks of Flat Creek, his wife and family; and of course the milk cows.

-Tim

My Dad

On Tuesday of this week I was nearing my home when my wife called me on the cell and told me that my Dad was possibly having a heart attack.  He was refusing to be taken to the ER for help.  My Mom had called my wife [Madge] to have her call me and if I could take him where he needed to be.

I stopped went in, and asked if he was doing okay.  He told me, “No! I’m not” even saying to me that there was the possibility he could be having a heart attack.  My words were, “Don’t you think you need to get to the hospital?”  To which he responded, “That’s a possibility”  We were getting somewhere.  He at first wanted to wait for Mom to get home.  She had a doctors appointment that day and was away with my sister Judy doing that.

Our Aunt Bonnie was there with my Day when I got there and she helped me to finally get him to agree and go.

When we arrived at the ER in Springfield an hour and a few minutes later, they quickly put him on an EKG and he was having a heart attack.  They rushed him to the cardiac cath lab; then, an hour and a half to two hours later the doctor came out and told us that basically they could do nothing; and he was continuing with the attack.  They would medicate him, keep him in CCU for a while, send him to a room, and send him home in a few days if things went well.

They have filled him with morphine, his mind is confused from it, and he thinks everyone else is confused.

My Dad made sure that my siblings and myself new the Lord by taking us to Sunday School and church every time the doors were open; and teaching us about work; and the value of family and friends.  Of course, my Mom had a big hand in that too.

There is one thing that I am convinced of and that is that God is good.  God is in control.  Not only is my Dad’s life in His hands; so is mine and yours.  None of us know the day or the hour we take our last step, breathe our last breath, or the last beat of our heart.

Whether it be along the banks of Flat Creek, Cox Hospital, any hospital, or Fairbanks, AK. we are all in the hands of our Creator.  So it is a great thing if you come to Him through His Son Jesus Christ, Creator.

-Tim

Worshipping the Creator

Today is the day most Christians will arise early, for the weekend, and prepare themselves and attend the church of their choice.  Will they worship the Lord of all, or will they be distracted by children, cell phones, employment, unemployment, or something else?  Only God knows our hearts.

We are told by our Creator; “They that worship Him, must worship Him in Spirit and in truth”.  The only true worship of God is found through faith in the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross; dying in our stead, for our sins, being buried, carrying our sin and its death, condemnation and guilt away; and Him rising victoriously for our justification; making us, in God’s sight and by God’s decree RIGHTEOUS and Just.

Now the Creator who would do that is worthy of our worship and praise.  Go to worship Him with the brethren today.  Worship Him on Monday – Saturday too; with all your heart.

Worshipping the Creator, not creation, along the banks of Flat Creek.

-Tim

Getting Some Rain

Along about late Saturday evening we got some rain.  I think it rained a little off and on through early Sunday morning.  It rained between 4:30 and 5 a.m. coming a  pretty good shower.  Lord, I thank YOU for sending the rain, and bringing its wonderful blessings.  YOU are a blessing.

It was raining a bit when I got up this morning too.  It stopped, but looks like it could just start back up any time.  We do need more.

Maybe if we followed the words of God, “In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus  concerning you” (1 Thessalonians 5:18) He would give us what we need in His own timing.

Thank God for the sunshine and the rain.

From the banks of Flat Creek.

-Tim

Unsettled Dust

On the afternoon of July 30, 2011 we had a massive historical event take place at our house.  It rained.  It rained so much it moved the dust from the ground to the air.  When it stopped raining the dust fell back to the ground.

It’s still dusty.  I say this laughing, because the rain had no sooner left, then the ground was dry again.

If I get to feeling pretty bad about the dry; all I need to do is think of those people in Africa who are in drought and famine; and then I see how blessed we  really are.

Lord of all creation, Jesus, we need some rain; and please help those people  in Kenya, Africa who are experiencing such chaos of drought, famine and military barbarism.  Meet their needs, and glorify YOUR name.

It’s Sunday.  Go to church today and worship our Lord and Savior.  Pray for the Lord to reveal your sins, confess them to Him, repent of them.  Then, pray for rain.

We need rain along the banks of Flat Creek too.

-Tim

Survival in the USA

Several years ago Hank Williams jr. sung a song with the words, “I’ve got a shotgun, a rifle and a four wheel drive; and a country boy can survive.”  That is the way I feel concerning the threats coming out of D.C.  I have a new definition for D.C.  (Dipstick Compartment)

The debt ceiling thing has nothing to do with individual survival.  If the debt rises or falls we can and will survive.  My survival is not dependent upon anything the D.C.’s do.  My survival is dependent upon my GOD and Savior Jesus Christ.  My life, my all, my finances come from His provisions; not D.C.’s

For all who may be interested; I do have a rifle.  I have three of them, and know how to use them.  I do not have a shotgun or a four wheel drive; but I can still survive.

How about you?  You can too.

Living here on the banks of Flat Creek we have access to fish, and there are other forms of wildlife to hunt, for sustenance, and life.  Oh, by they way I may seem cynical, but I am thankful for the freedom we still have in this country.  Where we can still tell our gov what we think of them; and without fear of reprisal.

We do need to be more concerned about personal debt.  We need to be out of it as soon as possible on the family level.  That will be a wonderful blessing for all.

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart; and lean not on your own understanding.”

-Tim

Going to Church

Some would think, “Well, You’re the pastor.  Of course you would go to church.”  I was going to church long before I ever became a pastor.  It is really not “Going to Church”; it is going to worship.  It is going to worship with others our Lord Jesus Christ; Savior of the world, and Lord and Master of the Universe and all that He has made.

My wife and I attend and are members of Carr Lane Baptist Church, down near the Arkansas and Missouri border in Southwest Missouri.  A country church with warm, loving people.

I am thankful today to be returning, because we were gone this past Sunday for our annual family get together.  I did get to hear a good sermon last Sunday by my brother in law; my sister’s husband.  It was good to be there with all our kids and grandkids; with the exception of one family.

It won’t be long and the wife and I will be getting in the car and heading for Carr Lane to worship.  Prayerfully, we worship Him everyday.  It is wonderful, however, to join other brothers and sisters in Christ to worship as oft as we can.

Writing from the banks of Flat Creek.  God bless you today and everyday.

-Tim

Family Weekend is Over

We made it to the end.  WHEW!!!  A house full of grand kids, their parents and the grand parents is an experience that will  not be soon forgotten.  When you have a family of 22 in one small home, sleeping in the living room floor, on the hide-a-bed, on the living room floor; on the dining room floor, the kitchen floor, and in all three bedrooms; there is bound to be some tension build up.

We all get along very well, yet there is tension.  I must give the credit to our getting along well to our GOD and Savior Jesus Christ.  Without that it would be nigh to impossible.  It also has to do with loving one another, and understanding matters.

We have had our problems; we continue to have problems where there are arguments occasionally over various matters; yet we still get together, converse, and enjoy our time together.

When we have got together at Philip’s and Sarah’s I have always been happy to return home.  When the kids are all here I am happy to see them come; but I am also happy to see the tail lights or rear bumpers of their cars headed toward their own homes.  Some people thinks that’s mean.  That’s the way life works.  Children are supposed to grow up and leave home.  If you don’t like it; get over it and accept the fact that you can’t hang on to them forever.  Nor, should you even want to.

From the banks of Flat Creek.

-Tim

A Family Sunday

Most of our kids and grand kids are still with us.  They are, in fact, still in bed sleeping.  They will need to be arising soon to get themselves ready for Sunday School and worship.

We are all attending Shiloah Baptist Church.  Shiloah is the Baptist church I grew up in.  I was saved there, baptized in Flat Creek at the old Jenkins bridge in 1966.  On the Sunday I was saved, my sister Jane was as well; as well as several other.  Otis Ennis was our pastor at the time, and he baptized us the following Sunday.

My wife and I attended Shiloah when we first married.  I surrendered to preach the word of God and the Gospel of Jesus Christ while we were attending.  From July 1987 – November 1990 I was their pastor.

The current Pastor is David Eaton, Jr.  He is my brother in law; and the son of the man who was my pastor when I surrendered to preach.

I always look forward to the times I can go and hear good preaching.  Preachers who preach the Word of God are becoming rare; though I know there are many who still do.  Too many will compromise the Word to keep  the masses happy rather than caring about keeping God happy.

So much for that.  Things appear to be quiet outside.  No dogs are barking, yet.  No cattle are in the yard, yet.  However the time is drawing nearer to the time for the family to arise and begin getting ready to hear the Word of God and worship.

-Tim

As the Sun Rises Over the Hill

As the sun rises over the hill to my East I hear dogs barking, and I wonder what is the dogs barking at.  I rise up from my chair to look and see, but they are only barking because they want out of their pen.  That will come a little later.

As the sun rises over the hill there are many thoughts that run through my mind.  Thoughts of dread, fear, anguish; yet also thoughts of hope, peace, love, joy, and my Lord Jesus Christ.  These latter things cancel out the other to some extent where they are not so binding.  It’s amazing how thought of Christ can set  you free.

As the sun rises over the hill the light gets brighter, everything becomes more clear.  Isn’t that what the Light of Christ is also about.

As the Son rises in our hearts, darkness vanishes.

-Tim

A Sunday Afternoon

The wife and I returned from worship service at Carr Lane Baptist just minutes ago.  We had a great worship service, with patriotic songs, the pledge to “old glory” and the message on 2 Corinthians 3:17;

 “Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.”

To begin the message I read Patrick Henry’s address to the House on March 23, 1775 where he said, “As for me; give me liberty, or give me death”.  This was said as there was debate in the house about whether to face the invading British military in battle or surrender and be enslaved to them.

The only liberty available to mankind can be found in Jesus Christ.  Without Christ you can be free yet bound.  With Christ you can be bound yet free.

Thank God for the freedoms we have in this nation.  It is He who has given them to us.

-Tim

Joyful, Joyful

A hymn of praise to our God and King…

Joyful, joyful, we adore Thee, God of glory, Lord of love;  Hearts unfold like flowers before Thee, Opening to the sun above.  Melt the clouds of sin and sadness; Drive the dark of doubt away;  Giver of immortal gladness, Fill us with the light of day!

Have a great day and worship the King at your local church.

-Tim