Good morning gospel music friends. I wanted to share with you this morning a thought on spiritual discernment. It is supremely important for we who stand in front of people to be finally tuned to the discernment of the Holy Ghost. For if we do not have or fail to heed spiritual discernment then we may hinder what God may have for someone else.

Yesterday I had the distinct honor and privilege to attend the homegoing service of one of my true heroes on this earth. I was also honored to be a pallbearer for brother Roger Henson. He was a true man of God who one souls year in a year out, preached the gospel without apology, and exercised a godly wisdom that is rarely known or seen.

Many of you may not know how I came to be a preacher. In December of 1994 I recall the first time that the Lord dealt with me about the call to preach the gospel. I pushed it away in deference to a career in gospel music. Thank God he is long suffering.

On the evening of November the 9th 2008 brother Roger Henson was preaching the final message of the Jesus First camp meeting at middle Tennessee Baptist Church in Murfreesboro. Although 14 years had gone by the pressing of the Holy Spirit unto the call to preach had never lessened and in this moment was at its Pinnacle. As brother Henson mounted the pulpit He hesitated, shuffled through the pages of his King James Bible and said, I am not supposed to preach tonight. There is something bigger going on that someone else needs to do. With that He sat down in a chair on the platform. After a few minutes of brokenness I motioned to my pastor, Tony Hutson, and revealed that it was me who needed to do something. I needed to surrender to preach.

Now, if brother Roger had not been sensitive to the Holy Ghost,exercised  spiritual discerment, and been obedient to the spirit and just plowed ahead with a sermon he had prepared to preach then my life might be forever affected. But because he had discernment and was obedient then I was given the open door to follow the Lord where he would lead.

Our imperative today is that our obedience does not solely affect us. Our obedience may be the hinge that swings the door of God’s will wide open for someone else. We must use diserment when the Lord changes our plans. It is not about us always. Our lives are meant to be intertwined with others. God has chosen people to accomplish his will. Will you be obedient today.

1 Corinthians 2:14-16 KJV
But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. [15] But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man. [16] For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.




Page 56 “Grace For Every Need”

Good morning Gospel music friends.  Our hope and prayer is that the grace of God toward you has not gone un-noticed.  Let’s talk about that.  Take your red-backed hymnal and turn to…

Page 56 “Grace For Every Need”

“And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” 2 Corinthians 12:9

It may be one of the most under recognized aspects of God’s interaction in our lives.  Grace saturates our entire existence.  Since the Lord has forgiven us from sins by His grace we can know Joy divine through the free gift of salvation (Eph 2:8-9).  It is the grace of God that will keep when the tempest sweeps and in every trying hour (2 Thes 2:16).  Grace shows up in unexpected outcomes when all seems lost, in unexpected people when it seems we stand alone, and in unexpected events that appear with no warning.  Grace is there to shield in battle, to shade us in the hot dry places, and shore us up when we might fall.

The God of Grace is long-suffering when we are slow of heart (Luke 24:25).  Grace is full and free to all who would believe (Rom 3:24, 5:2). There is lot’s of grace and it will never be depleted (James 4:6, Rom 5:20).  But, let us not take advantage of the liberty of Grace unto lasciviousness (Jude 4).

Let us be grateful unto God for Grace in every aspect of our lives.





The Private Prayer Life of a Man of God

It has been a while since we met in this electronic sanctuary, to which I apologize.  To make up for that I want to present a 24 carat nugget of spiritual life gold.  This past week a mentor to many, a champion of missions, a prince of preachers, Brother Stinnett Ballew, passed away after a short battle with aggressive stage 4 cancer which consumed all of his internal organs.  In the two weeks since news of his sickness was published I have returned to his writings and searched out his sermons.  I want to share a portion of one sermon, A Charge to Preachers, from 2011 that I found on sermonaudio.com.  In that message Brother Ballew shared something he had never before divulged publicly; his daily personal prayer routine.  Take note…

His initial admonition was, “Pray the Bible”.  Then he began to expound his routine.

* Confession, Repentance, Acknowledge who I am and who God is, pray for cleansing.

*Romans 6:11 “I reckon myself dead unto sin but alive unto God.”

*Romans 6:12-14 “Help me Lord not to yield my members as instruments of unrighteousness unto God, but yield my members as righteousness unto God. Not unto sin but to serve God.”

*Romans 12:1-2 “Lord, help me present my body a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto You which is my reasonable service.  Help me not to be conformed unto this world, but be transformed by the renewing of my mind and prove the good, acceptable, perfect will of God.”

NOTE* Chapter 6 says, “yield my members” but chapter 12 says “Present your bodies”  He said, “My body does not belong to me.  If you are a child of God your body belongs to Christ.”

*Isaiah 26:3 “Help me keep my mind stayed on you that you might keep me in perfect peace. Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight oh Lord, my strength, my redeemer.”

Brother Ballew said, “Do I accomplish this? So far as I know I never have, but I still pray it and I still strive for it.”

*Colossians 3:2 “Lord, help me set my affections on things above and not on things on the earth.”

*Galatians 5:16 “Help me walk in the Spirit that I might not fulfill the lust of the flesh.”

*Ephesians 6:11-18 “Help me put on the whole armor of God.” He would recite every instrument of the whole armor.  S.B. “THIS IS A BATTLEFIELD!”  (v18) “Help me be instant and constant in prayer.”

*I ask as Solomon, “Give me wisdom and understanding for every situation I face this day.”

*”Help me have the right attitude and the right answer for every situation I face this day” S.B. “I am more interested in having the right attitude than the right answer.  I can go find an answer but if I don’t have the right attitude, the right answer won’t matter as much.”

This was Brother Ballew’s daily routine of recitation in prayer before he began to pray through his extensive prayer list, which he memorized.  On his death bed it is recounted that as he slipped in and out of consciousness he was calling out the names on his prayer list.

Many of you probably never heard of Brother Stinnett Ballew, but God knows who he is.  See, they spoke extensively every day.  Bro Stinnett touched thousands of people for the cause of the Cross of Christ over the last 50+ years.  Prayer was the key, and if we will be great in God’s eyes, prayer will be the key for us as well.




Good morning Gospel music friends.  Our hope and prayer is that your life is free of creeps.  Let’s talk about that…

Jude wrote to us in verse 4 of his single chapter writing that, “There are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.”  Jude saw the effects of how one disingenuous person can ruin a Godly body, corporately and individually.  One of the primary purposes of the ministry-blog was to help the Gospel music traveler remain vigilant when it comes to the spiritual lives of your members.  Many of you have not attended a local home church, under the preaching of your Pastor for more than one Sunday at a time in decades.  This is prime property for the enemy to creep into our individual lives and thereby into the life of a group.

I read this week of a seminary in New York that has been around since the 1830’s whose president declared that she did not believe in the bodily resurrection of Christ, or that Jesus was even God among other damnable heresies.  HOW did that religious institution come to such a state? One creep at a time.  And don’t be fooled my friend, you and I are just as liable to allow sin and seemingly harmless allowances in our lives to creep in and bring us to a point of even questioning who Jesus really is.  Beware of the things that may try to creep into your life; a tv show, a bit of language, a smartphone app, a habit, a dismissal of the divine, a questionable acquaintance… Any and all of these creeps will end in a corrupted life.

One more thing.  Be careful who you include in your music group.  They might have pipes like Pavarotti or fingers that fly over the keys with artful ease, but, in fact, may be a CREEP who will end up being the source of the damage or destruction of your ministry. “Well, he just is a little bit sissy, has a lot of sissy friends and never has had a girlfriend, but he sure can play.  Oh, she/he flirts a little with folks that aren’t [their] spouse but boy, oh, boy can they belt it out.  Well, I should probably do something about it but we just recorded and they are on our latest single.”  Beware of the CREEPS.





Good morning Gospel music friends. Our hope and prayer is that the burdens you bear are the ‘right’ ones.  Let’s talk about that…

Jesus was rebuking cities that had rejected His words in Matthew 11. At the end of His message He spoke these words, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me: for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

Jesus is instructing us to swap out the burdens we weigh ourselves down with for the yoke of His burden. What is the burden He offers? To learn of Him, to lead others to Him and, most important, lean on Him. To labor in the Word, to labor in the fields that are white unto harvest and labor in prayer are key components of His yoke; the link to the load, our link to the yoke and the cross bar that links us to our pulling partner, The Lord.

Think on this. I believe there are 2 types of burdens; ones that have a reward at the end of the row, and others that take us to a tomb stone. 1 Peter 5:7 tells us to cast “all your care upon him; for he careth for you.” It may be time to stop carrying burdens that we have no business trying to shoulder. He is able and perfect is all His solutions. Don’t let a burden break you down to a point of, at the least, ineffectiveness, or at the worst, an early grave.

There are things you cannot fix. There are people you cannot change. In many cases it is not our responsibility. It is the Lord’s. Lay it down and hitch yourself to the yoke of Christ.



Knowing believing loving

Good morning Gospel music friends. I hope and prayer is that as you venture out into the fellowship of the saints wherever you are, that you will remind those who attend that it is possible to be assured of heaven. Let’s talk about that…

Lately I have been spending a awful lot of time in the book of first John. The overwhelming theme of the book is knowing. Over 30 times in this small book the word know is written. The chief aspect of knowledge in John’s writing is the fact that it is possible to know that we are saved.

In verses 23 and 24 of chapter 3 there are some divine evidences of how that we can know that we know him and more importantly, that he knows us. First of all has mentioned in other verses, we can know that we are his by our willingness to keep his commandments. Notice in verse 23 that the writer says that loving the son of God is a commandment of those who believe. What an interesting turn of phrase. The writer admonishes us to believe on his son Jesus Christ. That love will in turn produce a love for one another as believers. John 13:34 Jesus says that we ought to love one another ” as I have loved you!”

Parenthetical thought: (One of the most erroneous statements about relationships that has ever been spoken is true love means never having to say I’m sorry. Hogwash. I love my wife and she loves me and we have to apologize to one another frequently. I love the Lord more than her and a multiple times a day I have to tell him I’m sorry For some sin or trespass that I have committed. Loving somebody sometimes mean same I’m sorry. I’m not sure who that was for but we can agree that it is true according to the scripture.)

Verse 24 gives us a divine evidence that we are saved. The writer says the reason we keep his commandments because he is in us. And he who is in us loves us. How deep is the love within us that is actually love for us. Chapter 5 verse 13 tells us that his commandments are not grevious to those who believe. I don’t keep his commandments because he makes me I keep his commandments because he loves me.