Monday, July 31, 2006

Tears In Heaven

I would like to dedicate this devotion from "Our Daily Bread" for Monday, July 31, 2006 to the family of Rev. Billy Williams, Pastor of Cedar Creek Church in Sanderson, Florida. Brother Billy went to be with the Lord yesterday.

Our Daily Bread
Tears in Heaven

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READ: Revelation 21:1-8

God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. —Revelation 21:4

In 1991, famed British guitarist Eric Clapton was stricken with grief when his 4-year-old son Conor died as a result of a fall from an apartment window. Looking for an outlet for his grief, Clapton penned perhaps his most poignant ballad: “Tears In Heaven.” It seems that every note weighs heavy with the sense of pain and loss that can be understood only by a parent who has lost a child.

Surprisingly, however, Clapton said in a television interview years later, “In a sense, it wasn’t even a sad song. It was a song of belief. When it [says that] there will be no more tears in heaven, I think it’s a song of optimism—of reunion.”

The thought of a heavenly reunion is powerful indeed. For everyone who has trusted Jesus Christ for salvation, there is the hope that we will be reunited forever in a place where “God will wipe away every tear from [our] eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying” (Revelation 21:4). And, most of all, it is a place where we will “see His face” and forever be with Christ Himself (22:4).

In our times of loss and grief, of tears and sorrow, isn’t it comforting to know that Christ has purchased for us a heavenly home where there will be no more tears! Bill Crowder

What wonders await us in yonder fair land?
The face of our Savior, the touch of His hand,
No tears and no crying, no sighs or despair,
For Jesus is waiting to welcome us there. —Kerr

When God wipes our tears, sorrow will give way to eternal song.

No More Tears


Sunday, July 30, 2006

The U in JesUs

Before U were thought of or time had begun,
God stuck U in the name of His Son.

And each time U pray, you'll see it's true,
You can't spell out JesUs and not include U.

You're a pretty big part of His wonderful name,
For U, He was born; that's why He came.

And His great love for U is the reason He died.
It even takes U to spell crUcified.

Isn't it thrilling and splendidly grand
He rose from the dead, with U in His plan?

The stones split away, the gold trumpet blew,
and this word resUrrection is spelled with a U.

When JesUs left earth at His upward ascension,
He felt there was one thing He just had to mention.

"Go into the world and tell them it's true
That I love them all - Just like I love U."

So many great people are spelled with a U,
Don't they have a right to know JesUs too?

It all depends now on what U will do,
He'd like them to know,
But it all starts with U.

Will YOU pass it on.

Saturday, July 29, 2006

Children's Camp was a Blast

The children's camp at First Baptist Church of Winter Springs, Florida ended this afternoon. The children and adults that attended had a great time. The camp, which began Friday night, featured games, crafts, skits, food, music and Bible study. Kevin Owen & Cheryl Kent led the music and game activities for the weekend while I led the Bible study.

I would like to thank Pastor Terry Elixson for his help and for the opportunity to minister to the children.

Kevin & Cheryl will lead the music tomorrow morning (Sunday) and I will be preaching during the morning worship service at 11am.

Top photo: Cheryl & Kevin lead one of the music sessions.
Middle photo: Kevin & Cheryl lead camp participants in a "cool" ice cube game.
Bottom photo: I get involved in the "dress-up" game. By the way, I did not win.

Friday, July 28, 2006

The Eraser Of Confession

Our Daily Bread

READ: 1 John 1:5-10

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins. —1 John 1:9

From the time that Joseph Dixon (1827-1869) began producing the pencil during the US Civil War, the only substantial change in its design has been the addition of an eraser. Consider for a moment this unique little writing stick. At one end is a hard black point and at the other a small rubber tip. This simple instrument can be used to scribble, sketch, compute complicated formulas, or compose lofty poetry. But it can also quickly correct an error, change a figure, or start all over.

Each day the Christian inscribes words and deeds on the record of his personal history. But as he reflects upon what he’s said and done, he becomes aware that some of what’s been written is not of the quality that will please the Savior. He remembers attitudes and actions that should never be part of a believer’s life. Yet these sins are forgiven and fellowship with God restored through honest confession and repentance.

In John’s first epistle, he told us how to walk uprightly and enjoy fellowship with Christ and with one another. But John was a realist, knowing that some of the pages of our composition would be marked by daily flaws and failures. That’s why 1 John 1:9 is such a blessed promise. It tells us we can use the eraser of confession and start over. Dennis J. De Haan

We’re thankful, Lord, that when we fall
We can begin anew
If humbly we confess our sin,
Then turn and follow You. —Sper

Confession is the soil in which forgiveness flourishes.

Winter Springs Children's Camp

I will be heading to Winter Springs, Florida today to begin a children's camp for First Baptist Church of Winter Springs. Kevin Owen & Cheryl Kent will be joining me to provide the music and lead the games and activities. The camp will begin tonight at 6:30pm and continue tomorrow (Saturday) 10am-3:30pm.

On Sunday I will be preaching the morning worship service at the church beginning at 11am and Kevin & Cheryl will be leading the music.

For more information call Pastor Terry Elixson at (407) 327-5626. First Baptist Church is located at 817 East SR 434 in Winter Springs, Florida.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Funny Story

This story is funny even if you don't have any children (like me).

I was packing for my business trip and my 3-year old daughter was having a wonderful time playing on the bed. At one point she said, "Daddy, look at this," and stuck out two of her fingers.

Trying to keep her entertained, I reached out and stuck her tiny fingers in my mouth and said, "Daddy's gonna eat your fingers!" pretending to eat them before I rushed out of the room again.

When I returned, my daughter was standing on the bed staring at her fingers with a devastated look on her face. I said, "What's wrong, honey?"

She replied, "What happened to my booger?"

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

FBC Lake Butler Tonight

I will be preaching at 6:30pm tonight at First Baptist Church of Lake Butler. The church is located at 195 East Main Street in Lake Butler, Florida. The service will be held in the fellowship hall to due remodeling of the sanctuary. Please be in prayer for this service and for the church as they continue to search for a pastor.

Accurate Science?

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Can You Sleep When the Wind Blows?

I heard a similar version of this story over 20 years ago. Click here to check it out.

It reminds me of Jesus sleeping during the storm: Mark 4:35-41.

Have you tried the Podcast?


Have you checked out the monthly Podcast produced by the James Croft Evangelistic Association? Give it a listen and let me know what you think of "Walking with the Giant".


Monday, July 24, 2006

Kingbi Family














Here are a couple of photos that I received from Ghana, West Africa. Both of the photos feature Raphael Nii Adjei Anang Kingbi, the first child of Evangelist Raphael Adjei Kingbi and his wife Mavis. "Baby Ralph" was born on June 2, 2006 weighing 7.05lbs.

Evangelist Ralph serves as the Ghana Ministry Coordinator for the James Croft Evangelistic Association and gives a monthly report during the "Walking with the Giant" Podcast.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Genises 3:15

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Housecleaning

A BACHELOR'S PHILOSOPHY OF HOUSECLEANING!

don't do windows because ...

I love birds

and don't want one to run into a clean window

and get hurt.

I don't wax floors because ...

I am terrified a guest

will slip and get hurt

then I'll feel terrible

( plus they may sue me.)

I don't mind the dust bunnies because ...

They are very good company,

I have named most of them,

and they agree with everything I say.

I don't disturb cobwebs because ...

I want every creature

to have a home of their own.

I don't Spring Clean because ...

I love all the seasons

and don't want the others

to get jealous

I don't pull weeds

in the garden because ..

I don't want to get

in God's way,

HE is an excellent designer!


I don't iron because ...

I choose to believe them

when they say "Permanent Press".


REMEMBER . . . .

Friday, July 21, 2006

Giving Our All

This is a touching story with a strong message.

Many years ago, when I worked as a volunteer at a hospital, I got to know a little girl named Liz who was suffering from a rare & serious disease. Her only chance of recovery appeared to be a blood transfusion from her 5-year old brother, who had miraculously survived the same disease and had developed the antibodies needed to combat the illness.

The doctor explained the situation to her little brother, and asked the little boy if he would be willing to give his blood to his sister. I saw him hesitate for only a moment before taking a deep breath and saying, "Yes I'll do it if it will save her."

As the transfusion progressed, he lay in bed next to his sister and smiled, as we all did, seeing the color returning to her cheek. Then his face grew pale and his smile faded.

He looked up at the doctor and asked with a trembling voice, "Will I start to die right away".

Being young, the little boy had misunderstood the doctor; he thought he was going to have to give his sister all of his blood in order to save her.

John 15:12-13 (NKJV)
12This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.
13Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.

FBC Raiford on Sunday

I will be preaching at First Baptist Church of Raiford this Sunday, July 23rd. The services will begin at 11am & 6pm. First Baptist Church is located on CR229 just off SR121 in Raiford, Florida.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Where is God?

Two little boys, ages 8 and 10, are excessively mischievous. They are always getting into trouble and their parents know all about it. If any mischief occurs in their town, the two boys are probably involved.

The boys' mother heard that a preacher in town has been successful in disciplining children, so she asked if he would speak with her boys. The preacher agreed, but he asked to see them individually, So the mother sent the 8 year old first, in the morning, with the older boy to see the preacher in the afternoon.

The preacher, a huge man with a deep booming voice, sat the younger boy down and asked him sternly, "Do you know where God is, son?"

The boy's mouth dropped open, but he made no response, sitting there wide eyed and his mouth hanging open. So the preacher repeated the question in an even sterner tone, "Where is God?"

Again, the boy made no attempt to answer.

The preacher raised his voice even more and shook his finger in the boys face and bellowed, "Where is God?"

The boy screamed & bolted from the room, ran directly home & dove into his closet, slamming the door behind him.

When his older brother found him in the closet, he asked, "What happened?"

The younger brother, gasping for breath, replied, "We are in BIG trouble this time."

"GOD is missing, and they think we did it!"

Faith Matters


There is a strong message in this cartoon for you and I. The Bible says:

12Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” Acts 4:12 (NKJV)

It does matter where you put your faith!

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Leap Frog

I received this in an e-mail and I want to share it with you. It is a leap frog game produced in Microsoft Excel. I can't read all of the text, but I do know that the red arrow in the bottom left corner will reset the game. The goal of the game is to get each frog to the other side of the rocks. You can do this by moving the frogs or jumping the frogs. A frog cannot jump a frog of the same color.

I guess my I.Q. is not very high because it took me several attempts to get it right.

Click here to test your skill.

FBC Lake Butler Tonight

Tonight, at 6:30pm, I will be preaching at my home church, First Baptist Church of Lake Butler. The service will be held in the fellowship hall due to our sanctuary being remodeled. Please be in prayer for our church as we continue to search for a pastor.

First Baptist Church is located at 195 East Main Street in Lake Butler, Florida.

Do You Remember These?

This is a neat little page that will take you down "memory lane" as the Statler Brothers sing "Do You Remember These". Just click here to check it out.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Thank God

Why I Love Her

This is a nice presentation of John Wayne's "Why I love her".

Monday, July 17, 2006

Vegetables

Seize The Opportunity

Seize The Opportunity

READ: Acts 8:26-38

As we have opportunity, let us do good to all. —Galatians 6:10

Heavy rain was falling outside as Marcia, the director of the Jamaican Christian School for the Deaf, spoke to our group. Thirty-four teenagers and several adults were visiting the school. But one of our students was not distracted by the rain or the children running around the room.

That teenager heard Marcia say, “My dream for these kids is to have a playground.” She took that sentence, and through the prompting of the Lord turned it into an idea. Later that day she told me, “We should come back and build them a playground.” An opportunity for service was born.

A little over 4 months later, on another rainy day in Jamaica, we held a celebration in that same room. We had just assembled a wooden playground—complete with slides, a ladder, climbing bars, swings, forts, and a trapeze. One student seized an opportunity, and a dream was fulfilled.

How often does God prompt us to take action to meet the needs of others and we let the opportunity go? How many times does the Spirit nudge us to say or do something in Jesus’ name and we shake off the nudging? Like Philip in Acts 8, let’s honor the Lord by responding with action. Let’s seize each opportunity God gives us to serve others in His name. Dave Branon

Jesus said to one and all:
“Take your cross and follow Me.”
When you sense the Spirit’s call,
Seize the opportunity! —Hess

When the Spirit prompts, take action.

New Download Page

The download page for the "Walking with the Giant" Podcast has been redesigned as a Blog. The reasons for this move are strictly technical in nature and will allow a better-looking RSS feed. The page can be reached by clicking the "download mp3 file" link on the Podcast page on my website. You can also go straight to the download page by clicking here.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Now Playing in July


"Walking with the Giant"
for June 2006 is now online and ready for download.
The links for the Podcast are as follows:




This edition features an interview with Howard Butzer of Amazing Grace Ministries. I interviewed Brother Butzer during the Bradford County Fair in Starke, Florida in March of this year. He and his wife travel to various county and state fairs in several states each year to witness for Jesus Christ. The couple stays on the road for eight months out of the year with this ministry.

In the photo on left, Brother Butzer shares Jesus with a young man at the Bradford County Fair in Starke, Florida.

The program also has our monthly update from Evangelist Raphael Adjei Kingbi, JCEA Ghana Ministries Coordinator. Evangelist Ralph discusses the birth of his first child and thanks everyone that contributed to the "Online Baby Shower".

During the "Into The Word" section of the program I continue with the message titled "Little People Can Do Big Things For God". This focuses on little people (in this case a child, Samuel) being used by God. Perhaps "Samuel Listened, Do You?" should be the subtitle.

Additional info about the program:

“Walking with the Giant” is available as a free monthly web download or it can be delivered to your home, church or office on an audio CD that will allow you to listen at your convenience. To receive each issue of the program on CD simply send a $10 donation to the James Croft Evangelistic Association each month by mail or using your credit card. This donation will help cover the expenses of producing and mailing the monthly program.

Most importantly, we need you to support us with your
PRAYERS and by sharing this information with others!

Episodes can be downloaded by clicking here.

Friday, July 14, 2006

FBC Raiford on Sunday

I will be preaching at First Baptist Church of Raiford on Sunday. The services will begin at 11am & 6pm. Please be in prayer for these services and for the church as they are searching for a pastor. First Baptist Church is located just off SR121 on CR229 in Raiford, Florida.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Mrs. No-name

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

FBC Lake Butler Tonight

I will be preaching at First Baptist Church of Lake Butler tonight at 6:30pm. The service will be held in the fellowship hall due to our sanctuary being remodeled. First Baptist Church is located at 195 East Main Street in Lake Butler, Florida.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Spiritual Checkup

Our Daily Bread

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READ: Proverbs 4:20-27

Examine me, O Lord. —Psalm 26:2

Given a choice, I’d probably not voluntarily visit my doctor for a physical exam. I’m inclined to assume that everything is okay and not bother my doctor about it. But since my wife is a nurse, I don’t have a choice. I go in for regular exams.

And given a choice, many of us are a little afraid of spiritual checkups as well. After all, if we check our spirit too closely, we might have to change a habit or two. We might need something like an “attitude-ectomy.”

I suggest that we get over our reluctance. With God’s guidance, let’s undergo a spiritual checkup, using Proverbs 4:20-27 as a checklist.

Ears (v.20): Are we hearing God’s Word clearly and with understanding? Are we doing what those words tell us?

Eyes (vv.21,25): Are we keeping our eyes on the teachings that will guide us toward righteousness?

Heart (v.23): Are we protecting our heart from evil?

Tongue (v.24): Is our mouth clean and pure?

Feet (v.26): Are we walking straight toward God’s truth without wavering?

How did you do on your examination? Are there areas where you need to take action? Regular checkups will help to restore your spiritual vitality. Dave Branon

Create in me a clean heart, O God,
Show me the way that Jesus has trod;
Then I will tell of Your saving grace,
Until the day when I see Your face. —Hess

A spiritual checkup is the key to spiritual health.

Failed Preacher

Monday, July 10, 2006

Taking the High Road


The tallest vehicular bridge in the world is Millau Bridge.
For more information click here and to view more photos click here.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Act of God

Friday, July 07, 2006

FBC Raiford Added to Schedule

First Baptist Church of Raiford is now without a pastor and I will be filling-in for a couple of Sundays. I will be preaching on July 16th and 23rd at 11am & 6pm. Please be in prayer for these services and for the church as they search for a pastor.

First Baptist Church of Raiford is located just off SR121 on CR229 in Raiford, Florida.

Sunday in Lake Butler

I will be preaching at First Baptist Church of Lake Butler on Sunday morning, July 9th while our interim pastor Lewis Miller is away teaching a conference. The services will begin at 9am & 11am. The sanctuary is still being remodeled, so the services will be held in the fellowship hall.

My brother, John Croft, will be leading the music for these services in the absence of our music director Randall Norman.

First Baptist Church is located at 195 East Main Street in Lake Butler, Florida.

Please be in prayer for these services.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Photo Story

Free-lance photographer Jarrett Baker of Gainesville, Florida has begun taking photos of me for an upcoming article. Baker will follow me to various ministry and work events over the next few months. After completing the story, he will try to sell the story to one or more media outlets.

I met Jarrett in January when he and a reporter from the Gainesville Sun newspaper came to a Wednesday night service at First Baptist Church of Lake Butler. They were covering the horrific accident involving a school bus, car and semi-truck that claimed the lives of seven children. I was preaching at First Baptist that night. Click here to see the article about that night's service or to view one of the photos from that service you can click here.

If you would like to see more of Jarrett's photos, visit his website by clicking here.

Please join me in praying that this effort will be used to bring honor & glory to Jesus Christ.

July Podcast Available


"Walking with the Giant"
for June 2006 is now online and ready for download.
The links for the Podcast are as follows:


RSS Feed

iTunes Link

Website


This edition features an interview with Howard Butzer of Amazing Grace Ministries. I interviewed Brother Butzer during the Bradford County Fair in Starke, Florida in March of this year. He and his wife travel to various county and state fairs in several states each year to witness for Jesus Christ. The couple stays on the road for eight months out of the year with this ministry.

In the photo on left, Brother Butzer shares Jesus with a young man at the Bradford County Fair in Starke, Florida.

The program also has our monthly update from Evangelist Raphael Adjei Kingbi, JCEA Ghana Ministries Coordinator. Evangelist Ralph discusses the birth of his first child and thanks everyone that contributed to the "Online Baby Shower".

During the "Into The Word" section of the program I continue with the message titled "Little People Can Do Big Things For God". This focuses on little people (in this case a child, Samuel) being used by God. Perhaps "Samuel Listened, Do You?" should be the subtitle.

Additional info about the program:

“Walking with the Giant” is available as a free monthly web download or it can be delivered to your home, church or office on an audio CD that will allow you to listen at your convenience. To receive each issue of the program on CD simply send a $10 donation to the James Croft Evangelistic Association each month by mail or using your credit card. This donation will help cover the expenses of producing and mailing the monthly program.

Most importantly, we need you to support us with your
PRAYERS and by sharing this information with others!

Available Episodes Now Online:

July 2006

June 2006


Wednesday, July 05, 2006

FBC Lake Butler Tonight

I will be preaching at First Baptist Church of Lake Butler tonight at 6:30pm. The church is located at 195 East Main Street in Lake Butler, Florida. The service will be held in the fellowship hall due to remodeling of the sanctuary. Please be in prayer for this service.

Fireworks Display

Here's one more fireworks display for you to watch.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

God and Freedom

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READ: Psalm 100

Know that the Lord, He is God; it is He who has made us, and not we ourselves; we are His people. —Psalm 100:3

When members of the US Second Continental Congress approved the remarkable document known as the Declaration of Independence, they plainly declared their belief in God. The drafters of this noble proclamation knew that the sweeping freedoms they were proposing could work well only in a society where the Creator is acknowledged. They affirmed that God has “endowed” all people with the right to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness” because He values each of us.

Thomas Jefferson, who would become the third president of the new nation, was distressed by the sin he saw. He wrote, “I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just.” If he trembled then, he would have a violent seizure now!

The founding fathers of the US loved the concept of individual freedom, but they did not have in mind a permissive lifestyle that allows us to do anything we please. True freedom can never be enjoyed by people who refuse to fear God.

The psalmist said, “Know that the Lord, He is God; it is He who has made us, and not we ourselves” (Psalm 100:3). We are responsible to God, because He has created us in love.

Today, recommit yourself to living as one of God’s people. That’s the way to enjoy true freedom. Herbert Vander Lugt

Every blessing in our nation
Is a gift from God above,
But we cannot know true freedom
Till we trust His grace and love. —Hess

Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord. —Psalm 33:12

We Will Never Forget Presentation

Check out this presentation called "We Will Never Forget."

Monday, July 03, 2006

Another E-card

Here is an animated e-card that encourages us to remember the soldiers that allow us to have freedom.

Patriotic Organist

The minister was preoccupied with thoughts of how he was going to ask the congregation to come up with more money than they were expecting for repairs to the church building. Therefore, he was annoyed to find that the regular organist was sick and a substitute had been brought in at the last minute. The substitute wanted to know what to play. "Here's a copy of the service," he said impatiently. "But you'll have to think of something to play after I make the announcement about the finances."

During the service, the minister paused and said, "Brothers and Sisters, we are in great difficulty; the roof repairs cost twice as much as we expected, and we need $4,000 more. Any of you who can pledge $100 or more, please stand up." At that moment, the substitute organist played "The Star Spangled Banner."

And that is how the substitute became the regular organist!

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Independence Day on the Net

Here's a site that contains a lot of cool info about
Independence Day!

Saturday, July 01, 2006

4th of July Cards

Over the next few days I'll be posting links to some animated 4th of July cards that you might find interesting or would like to share with others. Here is the first one.

4th of July Celebrations Database

The 4th of July Celebrations Database contains a lot interesting information.

U.S. Independence Day Information

Here is some info on Independence Day you might find interesting.