GLMX #79: There is Still Hope After Tragedy

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When disaster strikes, it often comes without warning and leaves behind a path of destruction. The recent string of tornadoes that have devastated the Midwest and the South have not only left behind a path of destruction, but have left nearly 40 people dead, thousands homeless and without power. Besides, this a teenager recently walked into an Ohio school and shot five people, killing three of them who were fellow students. These recent disasters and tragedies will no doubt cause many to suffer psychological and emotional problems. Our hearts and prayers go out to the victims and their families.

If you are a victim of this tragedy or of this natural disaster, or if you are someone who has lost a family member or a friend in such a tragedy, you may be going through great pain and suffering as a result of this tragedy. You may be asking yourself some questions like, Why did this happen? Where can I turn for help? Does anyone care?

You may never understand why such a tragedy happened. But you can be assured that help and hope is on the way.

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GLMX #78: On “Being Saved” in Black America

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While growing up in a very religious and church-going family, I often heard the phrase “Being Saved.” Now to me and my peers, “Being Saved” was a rather spooky and mystical thing, and only the real holy folk could be such — whatever it was. I was under the impression that anyone who went up and took the chair after the preacher said, “The do-o-o-rs of the church are open,” was saved. And then, if a person got baptized he got a little more saved. And then, if they really got a dose of this “Being Saved” stuff, they would follow a set of rules like not drinking and smoking. These really saved folk would also engage in shouting and/or speaking in some unknown tongue on Sunday mornings. Now if a person was considered a hard case, he would have to be put on the mourner’s bench until he saw a vision or felt some kind of a change. Then, he was considered saved.
Even though I was raised in this religious environment, I was still rather doubtful about this thing called “Being Saved.” I just could not buy what people said “Being Saved” was. I always had questions in my mind about this matter such as: Saved from what? Saved to what? Was a person saved to live a sinless life? Could a person ever lose this “savedness”? If so, how and at what point? It wasn’t until I was a grown man and in the Air Force that these questions, along with a host of others were answered. I finally found out what it really meant to be saved according to the Holy Scriptures. Allow me to share with you what “Being Saved” really means. But first, let me share with you what it does not mean…

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Jeremy Lin is an Outspoken Christian Who Seeks to Bring God More Glory (Gospel Light Minute #41)

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He is the latest sensation to hit the sports world. He is considered to be “the Tim Tebow of the NBA”.

After receiving no athletic scholarship offers out of high school and being undrafted out of college, the 2010 Harvard University graduate reached a partially guaranteed contract deal later that year with his hometown Golden State Warriors. After his first year, he was waived by the Warriors and the Houston Rockets in the preseason before joining the New York Knicks early in the 2011–2012 season. He is the first American player in the NBA to be of Chinese or Taiwanese descent. He is credited with helping the New York Knicks win several recent games and the term “Linsanity” has been coined based upon his extraordinary talent.

While at Harvard, he was co-founder of a Bible study group run by the Harvard-Radcliffe Asian American Christian Fellowship. Following his sudden rise to stardom, he said, “I’m thinking about how I can trust God more. How can I surrender more? How can I bring Him more glory?” An outspoken Christian, he has made it no secret that he thanks God for everything in his life. He says he would one day like to be a pastor who can head up non-profit organizations, either at home or abroad. He said “everything in my life is a blessing from God. I look back and I realize these are His fingerprints all over my story. Our true prize … was something in heaven, not on earth. I realize I [have] to learn … to stop chasing the perishable prizes of this earth … and give my best effort unto God and trust Him with the results.” His name is Jeremy Lin.

What to Do When God is Whipping Your Behind (Part 1)

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Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message #44

We are beginning a new series titled “What to Do When God is Whipping Your Behind”. I feel that this is an important subject that Christians need to understand for their own personal growth. Today we will answer two important questions about how God chastises His children. Those questions are: “What is God’s chastisement?” and “Who does God chastise?”

Next week we will be addressing two more questions which are: “When do Christians get chastised by God?” and “How does God chastise Christians?” And on the third and final week, we will be addressing these two topics: “What are the end results of God’s chastisement?” and “How to have the right attitude when God is chastising you.”

How to Avoid Being Destroyed by the Devil (Part 4): How to Overcome the Tricks of the Devil

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Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message #44

Daniel Whyte III finishes his sermon series on a topic that many Christians overlook — our enemy, the Devil. In today’s message, Daniel Whyte III discusses the following points:

I. The Devil will tempt you again and again
II. We must resist the Devil in the name of Jesus
III. Overcome the Devil through prayer

+ Plus, listen to Larnelle Harris singing “I Go to the Rock” and the 12th District AME Mass Choir singing “Oh, the Blood of Jesus”

Your Tomorrow Could Very Well be Today (Gospel Light Minute #40)

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Jesus said, “Here I stand
Won’t you please let me in?”
And you said, “I will tomorrow”

Jesus said, “I am He who supplies all your needs
And you said, “I know, but tomorrow
Ooh, tomorrow, I’ll give my life”
Tomorrow, I thought about today
But it’s so much easier to say”

Tomorrow, who promised you tomorrow
Better choose the Lord today
For tomorrow very well might be too late

And who said tomorrow would ever come for you
Still you laugh and play and continue on to say, “Tomorrow”
Forget about tomorrow, won’t you give your life today

Please don’t just turn and walk away
Tomorrow, tomorrow is not promised
Don’t let this moment slip away
Your tomorrow could very well begin today.

These are the words to a famous song written by Carvin Winans and Deborah Winans, and first sung by Carvin and his brothers Marvin, Michael, and Ronald in 1984. Carvin, Marvin, and their youngest brother, BeBe Winans sung this song again at Whitney Houston’s homegoing service on Saturday, February 18, 2012 in Newark, New Jersey at the New Hope Baptist Church.

The words to this song are a powerful reminder to all of us that tomorrow is not promised us. James 4:13-14 states, “Go to now, ye that say, To day or to morrow we will go into such a city, and continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain: Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.” I am sure that Whitney Houston looked forward to attending her music mentor, Clive Davis’ pre-Grammy party in the days before her death. She even told him that she was working on getting her voice back and that she would be “ready by August”. By many accounts she was looking forward to the future and to doing what she loved to do and spending time with her precious daughter, Bobbi Kristina. And for those of you who think that Whitney Houston had a death wish or a suicidal mentality, I assure you that the last thing on earth she wanted to do was die with her daughter just turning 18 years old. But “tomorrow” never came for Whitney Houston. Tomorrow is not promised to come for you or for me. Since today is all we have, this moment is all we have, the question is if you were to die today, are you ready to meet your Creator? Apparently, Whitney Houston was ready to meet Jesus Christ. Somewhere in her young life, she decided to believe in Jesus Christ. She loved Him and she knew that He loved her. She did not put off believing in Jesus until “tomorrow”. 2 Corinthians 6:2 states, “now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.”

Dear friend, many people who were alive yesterday are dead this morning. Many people who thought they would be here today are not here. So, “Don’t let this moment slip away.” Don’t put off accepting Christ until tomorrow or until some other time. “Your tomorrow could very well begin today.” If you want to be ready to meet your Creator as Whitney Houston was, allow me to show you how:

+ Plus, listen to Carvin, Marvin, Michael and Ronald Winans singing “Tomorrow”

GLMX #77: I Will See Whitney, Moses, David, Samson, and Peter In Heaven — Will I See You?

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Whitney Houston’s body will be laid to rest today, Sunday, February 19, 2012, after a fantastic homegoing service at her home church in New Jersey on Saturday. The church was filled with well-known pastors, singers, musicians, movie directors, actors, and music moguls from different backgrounds and walks of life. They all came not only to celebrate her life, but to celebrate her faith and love for God.

Believe it or not, Whitney Houston was a witness for the Lord throughout her life even though she had gotten away from the Lord in her personal life from time to time. But like Samson she brought more glory to God in her death than in her life. She brought more people to the House of God to hear the Word of God, from all over the world, than some people will bring in a lifetime. Someone asked the Governor of New Jersey, ‘why are you flying the flags half-staff for Whitney Houston? She had some drug abuse issues in her life.’ The governor replied, “but for the grace of God go I.”

Some people may doubt if Whitney Houston went to Heaven when she died based upon some things she did in her latter years. If that were the basis for going to Heaven, then we could also doubt if some of the servants of the Lord whom God used in the Bible went to Heaven as well.

Moses was a murderer, yet God allowed him to lead the Israelites to the Promised Land and God gave Him the Ten Commandments which, by the way, included the command, “Thou shalt not kill.”

David was an adulterer, murderer, and liar, but yet he was the king of Israel and remained so after he sinned, and despite his sins, God still called him a man after His own heart.

Samson was a womanizer who used his God-given gifts and talents for his own purposes, yet God used him at the end of his life and even through his death to bring victory for the Israelites over their enemies for the glory of God.

Peter committed the ultimate sin of denying he knew Christ, not once, not twice, but three times, yet he was the first one to enter the empty tomb of Jesus Christ after His resurrection, he was used by God to bring the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ to the whole known world in the book of Acts, he wrote two books in the New Testament, and was used by God to be a key leader in the early church.

Just based upon their behaviour and actions, none of these servants of the Lord should be in Heaven. But I can assure you that they are, not based upon their behaviour but based upon their belief in Jesus Christ – the Messiah. Whitney Houston, by the accounts of several of her friends and by her own words, believed in Jesus Christ and loved Him all the way to the end of her life.

After a week of gathering information on her spiritual life, I am convinced that I will see Whitney in Heaven, along with Moses, David, Samson, and Peter. The question today is will I see you in Heaven? Dr. John MacArthur, who is a biblical scholar, said, “Heaven is a place more wonderful than we can ever begin to imagine. It is a place of joy and beauty, of peace and happiness that will never end.”

Just last night, after looking at a broadcast regarding Whitney Houston, they showed the movie “The Bodyguard”, which Whitney Houston starred in with Kevin Costner. For the first time I watched that movie, and to my surprise, it was a good movie, and I told my family that Heaven will be like a great movie that never ends. Dr. John MacArthur continues by saying, “Heaven is also a place where there will be no sin or suffering, no sorrow or pain. Heaven is the place where we will have perfect joy, perfect peace, perfect knowledge, and live in perfect comfort. We will love God perfectly and will be loved perfectly by Him. His love will engulf us forever.” Will I see you in this beautiful place called Heaven?

If you were to die today and you’re not sure that you would go to this place called Heaven where not only Moses, David, Samson, and Peter are, but where I believe Whitney Houston is, allow me to show you how you can be sure right now.

+ Plus, listen to Whitney Houston singing “I Look to You”

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