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Jun 29

The Influence of a Faithful Father

couple-pray-ps103…God created human beings in his own image. In the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. Then God blessed them and said, “Be fruitful and multiply”. — Genesis 1:27-28

Before there were any religious or civil institutions, God created man and woman together, as equals, to reflect the image of God, who is Himself, the Author of life and Creator of all things.  After He created them, He blessed them, and commissioned them to “be fruitful and multiply”.  The implication is that God desired a blessed posterity to come forth from Adam and Eve’s union, filling the earth with His image bearers.  In other words, mankind’s first, and therefore most important commissioning, is father and mother.  It wasn’t a religious or political commissioning, it was a family commissioning.   For this reason, God alone gets to define fatherhood, motherhood, and family.  So it follows that our attitude toward these God ordained roles must completely align with the plumb line of His word, which is His will.  With that in mind, and as we celebrate Father’s day in 2015, I want to share with you what I believe are at least four qualities of a faithful father.

Now just to be clear, faithfulness is not about perfection (we all make mistakes).  It’s about making the effort in good faith.  Unfaithfulness on the other hand, means not caring enough to make a serious effort.   The writer of the book of Hebrews wrote, “For our earthly fathers disciplined us for a few years, doing the best they knew how. But God’s discipline is always good for us, so that we might share in his holiness” – Hebrews 12:10.  This tells us that regardless of how we may view the faithfulness of our earthly fathers or ourselves, we should never project that on to our heavenly Father.  He is always good and He is always faithful because He loves us genuinely and perfectly.  It also reminds us that faithfulness is borne out of genuine love, and that is what motivates us to do our best to be and become faithful fathers.

That said, the first quality of a faithful father is that they love their children enough to discipline and correct them.  The writer of Proverbs wrote, “Discipline your children while there is hope. Otherwise you will ruin their lives.” — Proverbs 19:18.  Discipline isn’t just about spanking (which should only be done in a non-abusive and age appropriate manner), it’s about correction and requires real involvement in the life of your children.

The second quality of a faithful father is that they truly honor their wives.  Peter the Apostle, wrote, “…you husbands must give honor to your wives. Treat your wife with understanding as you live together. She may be weaker than you are, but she is your equal partner in God’s gift of new life. Treat her as you should so your prayers will not be hindered.”—1 Peter 3:7.  (The word weaker here simply means more sensitive).  Honoring our wives this way, as our equal partners, demonstrates to our sons and daughters how a godly man should treat his wife.  It also sets the bar of how our daughters should expect to be treated by future suitors and husbands.

The third quality of a faithful father is that they intentionally seek to know God and observe His ways.  They don’t just seek to know about God, but they seek to know Him through direct personal and continual experience.
Jesus said to the people who believed in him, “You are truly my disciples if you remain faithful to my teachings. And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”  — John 8:31-32.  Jesus is saying that when you remain faithful to His teachings, you will know (have relationship/fellowship with) Him and He will set you free.

The fourth quality of a faithful father is that they tell the next generation about the glorious deeds of the Lord. Have you shared your testimony with your children?  Do they see you walking in vital union with the Lord?  Do they see reading and studying the Scriptures, and seeking God for everything?  Do they celebrate and praise God with you when He answers?

“We will not hide these truths from our children; we will tell the next generation about the glorious deeds of the LORD, about his power and his mighty wonders.  For he issued his laws to Jacob;  he gave his instructions to Israel. He commanded our ancestors to teach them to their children, so the next generation might know them— even the children not yet born— and they in turn will teach their own children. So each generation should set its hope anew on God, not forgetting his glorious miracles and obeying his commands. Then they will not be like their ancestors— stubborn, rebellious, and unfaithful, refusing to give their hearts to God. “ – Psalm 78:4-8

As we read this passage, we can see that every father has a significant and multi-generational influence on their children.  The only question is what kind of influence will it be?  With so much at stake, shouldn’t we make every effort to do our best?   As we think about these things, let us come to the place where we say, “As for me and my house, we shall serve the Lord.”

May God bless you and your families,

Pastor Neal

Jun 09

The New Wineskin

Wineskin-300“But new wine must be put into new wineskins, and both are preserved.” – Luke 5:38

In the previous verse to the above noted scripture, it states the reason why a new wineskin is needed when pouring in new wine. Because of the fermentation process, it stretches out the skin. If the skin is old and already stretched out, it will burst and both will be lost.

God has been speaking to the church at large about a new wineskin He is creating. What is the “wineskin” that he is creating? Why do we need a new one? What’s wrong with the old wineskin?

What I believe God is creating is a new structure through which He will move in these last days to prepare the Bride, which is the church, for her Bridegroom—to be without spot, wrinkle—to be presented to Himself at the wedding feast of the Lamb.

He is “reforming” the church into the structure He created it to be. An example that we can glean from is the pile of dead, dry bones laying the valley in Ezekiel’s vision in Ezekiel 37.  The pile, at that point, was the only structure each bone in that pile knew. If it was dead, dry and disconnected, then it wasn’t functioning and moving in the way it was supposed to for too long. But it was all it knew. It wasn’t until the voice of the prophet, as commanded by the Lord, called to those bones to re-form back into the skeletons they were originally, did they begin to move, connect and line up in original design God had for the structure of the body. Once the skeleton’s were reformed, then the muscle, tendons, tissue and skin could cover it, then it was finally ready to hold the breath from the Living God that He released into it.

This is where we find ourselves right now as the corporate Body of Christ. God is calling the “bones” together to “re-form” back into His original design—which isn’t a pile! It is going to be different than what we are accustomed to, what we are comfortable with but if we don’t change, the whole thing will burst and there will be loss.

God’s purpose in this transition of reformation is to preserve both the wine and the wineskin. The wine is a fresh Holy Spirit outpouring. The wineskin is what holds it.  The current wineskin or structure is not able to hold the new outpouring that God wants to bring. It is not able to hold the Presence of God that He wants to bring and manifest in the midst of His Bride—His church—at this time in history. So we need to get ourselves ready for the change. Get ready to moved around to the place God has ordained we be in at this time and in this new structure.  The thing we need to be watchful of is that holding on to the old wine and wineskin. Like it says in verse 39, once the old wine has been tasted, no one wants the new. The old is familiar, it is comfortable, it is all we know. But we need to let it go, ask the Lord for the mindset of a pioneer and not let fear lock us up and away from the awesome things God has for the church, our families, our communities, our Island, our city and our nation at this time.  The new wineskin is a changed lifestyle to accommodate a new move of the Spirit in our personal lives. God wants us to change our schedules and routines in a way that shows Him that we are hungry & thirsty for Him! The new wineskin is also the means in which we worship together. You will, no doubt, see us do things a little differently as the Spirit leads us.

We may not know what it is going to look like or feel like, but that’s ok because God knows. This is going to be a great time to learn how to walk according to the Spirit of God in a greater way and break away from our self-reliance and leaning on what we are used to and comfortable with. It is going to be exciting and we are all going through it together!

God Bless you all abundantly!

Pastor  Nancy

May 06

New Beginnings

New Beginnings

“Then God blessed them and said, “Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth and govern it.”  (Gen. 1:28a)


This is a very important and exciting time in the history of Lighthouse Tabernacle Church. It’s a time of New Beginnings! What better way to think about this than from a verse in the Book of Beginnings, Genesis. The verse above is probably one of the most important verses in the Bible. It also states a very important truth for our church in this season.

A New Beginning. This speaks of transition. It speaks of GENERATIONAL blessing. God commanded Adam and Eve to multiply and fill the earth – to reign over it. These words are not accidental. God spoke them deliberately. He told Adam and Eve that they would bear children and their children must be trained to reign from generation to generation. This is how God’s Rule is transmitted. The Bible calls it continuity. It is God’s way of passing His covenant blessings and responsibilities to succeeding generations. It works the same way in churches.

As we enter this new season in our lives, Lighthouse Tabernacle is poised on the threshold of a new move of God. God has gifted our church with a great family of believers and capable leadership. Our leadership team has been trained to think in a “Kingdom Mindset” and have a “Dominion Mindset” as we extend the Kingdom of God through preaching and teaching the Gospel. God has uniquely called and brought together all of us here at Lighthouse. For the last twenty-one years, I have worked to maintain the vision God has given us to carry out. We have given you the “whole counsel of God.” We never followed any fads or promoted the next great thing to come down the pike. We have remained true to the Lord, His Spirit and His Word. Now the time has come for the next generation of leaders to take the church into the next phase of its mission. I know the Lord is about to do great things among us!

When it was time for Moses to install his successor, Joshua was ready! He had ministered alongside Moses for over 40 years. He learned leadership. He learned to hear from God. He learned how to battle the enemy and establish God’s people. At the right time, God “elevated Joshua in the eyes of the people” by giving him victory over his enemies. God is about to do that on behalf of Pastor Neal and our entire leadership team. Moses’ responsibility was to bring Joshua and the Israelites to the border of Canaan. It would be Joshua’s responsibility to take them in. He wouldn’t do so exactly has Moses did. While I’m sure he did many things that may have reminded Israel of Moses, Joshua led them in his own way; with his own gift mix and according to his own “DNA” and personality. How awesome to see God work His plan through the next generation.                I need you all to realize something. God wanted Israel in Canaan. He used Moses to bring the TO Canaan; He needed Joshua to bring them IN. In the same way, God used me to bring Lighthouse TO this season in our lives, but He needs Pastor Neal to bring you into the next generation. There will be lots to do. There will be battles to fight and victories to win; AND THEY WILL BE WON.

I am excited and honored to have the privilege to have raised up a great leadership team! I am confident that God will be glorified and His Kingdom will be expanded. I ask that you all stay the course. Pray, Believe, Serve together and watch God work. As I continue to provide oversight for the ministry, I know there will be great things for us. We will be able to say, “The Lord has done great things for us; yes, the Lord has done great things!”