Tuesday, November 30, 2010

3,300 Miles For Christ

Way back in 2005 I received an encouraging note via my ministry website guest book from Nick & Lucy Della Valle of Breath of Christ Ministries in Leawood, Kansas.  We swapped e-mail addresses and began receiving each others e-mail newsletters.  No personal contact, only newsletters.

Fast forward to November 2008 when I was preparing to undergo a hip revision surgery.  I sent e-mails and letters to those on my list asking for prayer about the challenge and uncertainty ahead.  Many even responded with financial assistance to help with the medical costs and living expenses during the time of rehab.  Nick & Lucy, to my surprise, responded very generously.  I mailed them a thank you note, as I did with everyone else, but we still had no direct communication.

Now let's fast forward to two weeks ago.  My morning e-mail reading included Nick & Lucy's ministry newsletter.  The subject line stated they were in Jasper, Florida, not too far from my home in the metropolis of Olustee!  I knew we had to finally meet in person.  After a telephone conversation, we met for lunch in Live Oak.  Now, I must confess, either my memory is waning with age or I just didn't realize that we had something else in common.  Not just that we are Christians, evangelists, or co-laborers for the Lord, but we are all three little people!  Nick is 4'8" and Lucy is 4' and I come in at 3'10" (3'11" with the right shoes)!

We spent several hours together dining at a local Huddle House, mostly just sharing our travels and experiences of serving the Lord.  Of course, we gained much attention in the process.  We met again last week in Starke, Florida at the Western Steer Family Steakhouse as their walk for Christ took them up State Road 100.  I mention the restaurant names as a way of saying "thank you" to the nice servers who tolerated us parking at their table for several hours... several hours!

"Walk for Christ"?  Let me explain.

Nick is making a 3,300 mile walk for Christ.  His path winds through several states and will be ending in Florida in the next few weeks.  He walks in Biblical attire and draws a considerable amount of attention.  As people stop along the route and asks "what's going on", he is able to share the Gospel with them.  Nick calls it "responsive evangelism" - responding to the inquiries of others.  He walks 15 miles each day and then they park their home, an RV, for the evening.  Nick and Lucy also minister in churches along the way with Biblical storytelling complete with Biblical attire.  This is the couple's third 3,300 mile walk for Christ!

I really enjoyed meeting this couple that are so committed to serving the Lord in such a unique way.  I feel an earthly life-long friendship has been established and a Christian fellowship that will continue into eternity.  Please be in prayer for this couple as they walk for Christ, and that He will use them mightily to further His Kingdom!

By the way, if you happen to be traveling US Highway 17 South toward Deland, Florida today and you see Nick along the way, stop and say hello.

Romans 10:14-15 (NKJV)
14 How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? 15 And how shall they preach unless they are sent? As it is written:

      “ How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace,
      Who bring glad tidings of good things!”

For more information about Nick and Lucy visit the Breath of Christ Ministries website or follow them on Facebook: Nick's profile and Lucy's profile.

FBC Lake Butler Wednesday Night

I will be preaching in supply for Pastor Jason Johns at First Baptist Church of Lake Butler, Wednesday, December 1, 2010 at 6:30pm.  The church is located at 195 East Main Street in Lake Butler, Florida.  For more information or directions call the church at (386) 496-3704.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Christmas Food Court Flash Mob

On Nov.13 2010 unsuspecting shoppers got a big surprise while enjoying their lunch. Over 100 participants in this awesome Christmas Flash Mob. This is a must see!

This flash mob was organized by http://www.AlphabetPhotography.com to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Game Day

A backyard football game, complete with sports announcer, provides a comical look at the in-state football rivalry between the Florida State Seminoles and the Florida Gators. The video relates the game to the story of David and Goliath in 1 Samuel 17 in the Bible.

Disclaimer: I James Croft, am a Florida State Seminole fan and I wanted the video to reflect a win by the 'Noles, but the four young ladies out voted me. Yes, they are Gator Fans. Oh, well, the Biblical message is still the same.

View all of our videos on YouTube.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

No Surgery Today

As Thanksgiving approaches it gives us cause to reflect on our blessings.  I, like you, have many, but today is a very special blessing.  I'm not having surgery today!  Stating this as a "blessing" might seem strange to those who don't know me very well, so allow me to explain.

Both of my hips were replaced in 1995 and I began experiencing pain in the left one in late 2007.  In 2008 it was determined that the femoral rod was slipping... this is painful.  The surgery, a "hip revision", was scheduled for the Tuesday before Thanksgiving.  The procedure had a few complications, but the hope was it would solve the problem.  However, in mid 2009 the pain returned.  Another surgery was scheduled for - you guessed it - the Tuesday before Thanksgiving.  This time, the hip revision went as planned.  I still have a lot of muscle weakness that requires me to use a cane - but no pain - and with no pain, that means no surgery!

Now you understand why not having surgery today, the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, is a blessing.  This will be my first Thanksgiving at home in three years!  Hospital food just isn't the same as home cookin'.  Boy, am I excited!!

I called Dr. Mark Petty's office today.  He was in surgery.  I left him a message that I am really glad that I'm not seeing him on a professional basis today.  His staff got a laugh out of that.  They are awesome people.  I will also say the staff at North Florida Regional Hospital in Gainesville, Florida is excellent, and a blessing to me in my time of need.  I'm sure they will be a blessing to those hospitalized this Thanksgiving.  Join me in praying for those that will not be home with family and friends for this holiday - those that wil be hospitalized and those working hospital employees.

NOTE: Read previous posts about my hip surgery experiences at this link.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Step It Up

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Graham, FL Sunday Morning

I will be preaching at Praise Christian Assembly in Graham this Sunday, November 21, 2010.  The morning worship service begins at 10:30am.  Praise Christian Assembly is located on County Road 18 east of Graham, Florida.

Monday, November 15, 2010

America Recycles Day

Today, November 15th, is America Recycles Day.  This has sparked a bit of reminiscing on my part.

During my term on the Baker County Commission (1984-1988) I helped establish the first multi-county solid waste authority in the state of Florida. New River Solid Waste Association served Baker, Bradford and Union Counties. I began working for the association in March of 1989. During the next 17 years I helped permit a regional landfill, started recycling programs for the region and established a Certified Affiliate of Keep America Beautiful called Keep Tri-counties Beautiful. I often said I was a professional trash talker.

When I was called into the ministry in 1994, I told folks I was now a total environmentalist, my "day job" was to ensure that their environment on Earth is the best it could be and my ministry was to help ensure their environment in eternity would be the best it could be. These days the latter is now my full-time career.

I enjoyed my career in the "environmental business", because I always felt that it too was a ministry for me. I believed (and still do) that we should be good stewards of the planet God has entrusted us with, but we should never forget to worship the Creator. We can admire God's creation, but never worship the creation. Worship is reserved for God, and Him alone.

Here's something else for you to consider. You and I, because of sin, were really "waste" (Isaiah 64:6). We were bound for the "landfill", or to be more precise, the "incinerator" (Rev. 20:15). We needed someone (Jesus) to "recycle" us (Romans 5:8). To "recycle" means to use again, so if we are "born again" (John 3:3) we are now "reusable" (2 Cor. 5:17). As a born-again believer we are now to be used by God (Rom. 12:1-2). We also have a new "eternal destination" (John 14:1-3).

Have you been recycled by Jesus? He's the ONLY way (John 14:6)!

If you would like to know more about God's "recycling plan" visit Do You Know? or view the video. You can also e-mail me and I'll try to answer your questions.

Thank you Lord for allowing us to take care of the planet you have given us. May we do better in caring for Your Creation and even more to honor You!

Football Trick Play

Here's a football "trick play" I think fans will enjoy.  I do love this sport!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Friday, November 12, 2010

Can We Help You?

Praise Christian Assembly, Graham, FL

I will be preaching at Praise Christian Assembly near Graham the next two Sundays, November 14 and 21, 2010.  The morning worship service begins at 10:30am.  Praise Christian Assembly is located on County Road 18 east of Graham, Florida.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Coffee Does What??

What's all this talk about coffee stunting your growth??

OK, OK, now you know why I no longer attempt stand-up comedy.  8-)

Monday, November 08, 2010

Election Coverage: Behind-the-scenes

A behind-the-scenes look at the WJXR 92.1 FM Election Command Center on Tuesday, November 2, 2010. The program host James "The Giant" Croft (left photo) interviews outgoing District 4 Baker County Commissioner Mike Griffis. Griffis chose not to seek re-election this year and assisted Croft by tabulating election returns.

Croft provided listeners with non-stop coverage of Baker County voting including candidate info, analysis, interviews and precinct-by-precinct results.

Croft worked full-time for WJXR (then WBKF) when the radio station first went on-the-air in 1978 until 1981.  He served as a county commissioner in Baker County from District 1 from 1984-1988.  He has anchored the election broadcast over the past years.

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Friday, November 05, 2010

Graham, FL The Next Three Sundays

I will be preaching at Praise Christian Assembly near Graham on the next three Sundays, November 7, 14, and 21, 2010.  The morning worship service begins at 10:30am.  Praise Christian Assembly is located on County Road 18 east of Graham, Florida.

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Life After The Election

Here are a few thoughts for the morning after an election:

If you are a Christian, whether your candidate won or lost, the responsibility to pray for our leaders is still to be honored.

1 Timothy 2:1-4 (NKJV)
1 Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men,
2 for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence.
3 For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior,
4 who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.

Our Christian responsibility to our government is still to be honored.

Matt 22:15-22 (NKJV)
15 Then the Pharisees went and plotted how they might entangle Him in His talk.
16 And they sent to Him their disciples with the Herodians, saying, “Teacher, we know that You are true, and teach the way of God in truth; nor do You care about anyone, for You do not regard the person of men.
17 Tell us, therefore, what do You think? Is it lawful to pay taxes to Caesar, or not?”
18 But Jesus perceived their wickedness, and said, “Why do you test Me, you hypocrites?
19 Show Me the tax money.” So they brought Him a denarius.
20 And He said to them, “Whose image and inscription is this?”
21 They said to Him, “Caesar’s.” And He said to them, “Render therefore to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.”
22 When they had heard these words, they marveled, and left Him and went their way.

The Word of God has not changed (contrary to what some may say).

2 Tim 3:16-17 (NKJV)
16 All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness,
17 that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.

God's desire for the lost to be saved has not changed.

John 3:16 (NKJV)
16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

2 Pet 3:9 (NKJV)
9 The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.

Our Christian responsibility to be a witness for Jesus Christ has not changed.

Matt 28:18-20 (NKJV)
18 And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.
19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,
20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.

God's ability to save sinners has not changed.

Isa 59:1 (NKJV)
1 Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, That it cannot save; Nor His ear heavy, That it cannot hear.

Rom 10:13 (NKJV)
13 For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

The Way to salvation has not changed, He is still the ONLY WAY (contrary to what others may say).

John 14:6 (NKJV)
6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.

God's desire to bless our nation has not changed.

2 Chr 7:14 (NKJV)
14 if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.

Leaders may change, but our Lord Jesus Christ never changes.

Heb 13:8 (NKJV)
8 Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever.

To view a video about the way to salvation, visit "Do You Know?"

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Fall Festival In Hahira Saturday

I will be speaking during the Fall Festival and Ministry Fair at Bethany Baptist Church this Saturday, November 6, 2010.  The event begins at 1pm and ends at 5pm at 5064 Bethany Road in Hahira, Georgia.  I'll be giving what is hoped to be a "comedy" presentation at 2pm in the gym.   Hopefully, I'll be able to remember some of my humorous stories from my days of stand-up comedy.  Of course, I will include a serious presentation of the Gospel too.  For more information about the fall festival call Pastor Don Smith at (229) 794-3156.

Monday, November 01, 2010

Radio Election Coverage

I will be providing live coverage of election results in my home county tomorrow night (November 2, 2010) on WJXR 92.1 FM. The results will be broadcast from the Baker County Supervisor of Elections office in Macclenny, Florida.  Baker County will vote on two county commission seats, Governor, U.S. Senate, Florida Cabinet members, two referendum questions and a host of proposed constitutional amendments (view sample ballot).  I'll provide the first report around 7pm followed by updates as local results become available.  I'll also be interviewing County Commissioner Mike Griffis, who is not seeking re-election to the District 4 seat.  After the final results are announced, I hope to interview the four local candidates seeking county commission seats.

Many brave men and women have made tremendous sacrifices that we might have the freedom to choose our leaders at every level of government, don't let those sacrifices be in vain - VOTE!

"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." Edmund Burke