Friday, May 27, 2011

A Few Good Men

Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.” (I Corinthians 15:58)

On October 8, 1918, Sergeant Alvin C. York singlehandedly captured 132 German soldiers, a feat that earned him the Congressional Medal of Honor. Sergeant York displayed the kind of courage and selflessness that is required of heroes. One of the reasons I believe he stood out and became a hero to many is because of his faith. Listen to a quote he made in his diary of his experience in World War II.

On July 1st, 1918 he wrote:

I carried a Testament with me. I have the Testament I carried with me during all my fighting at home now. I read it through five times during my stay in the army. I read it everywhere. I read it in dugouts, in fox holes, and on the front line. It was my rock to cling to. It and my diary. I didn’t do any cursing, no, not even in the front line. I cut all of that out long ago, at the time I was saved. You see, a hero is someone who does much more than just an amazing thing. A hero is someone who reflects heroism in his life. A hero is someone who does heroic things, because his character demands it.

Ben Tomlinson, Leon Hardy, and Dwayne Williams are some of my heroes.

They are men with amazing character. Ben is currently in CCU at Bethesda Naval Hospital recovering from a gunshot wound he received in Afghanistan a little over a week ago. Leon Hardy lost a leg while serving our country in Vietnam. Dwayne Williams was killed while serving his country in the September 11, 2001 blast that struck the Pentagon. Today he walks the streets of glory.

These men have several things in common. They are believers in Jesus Christ. They have roots in Jacksonville and First Baptist Church. They have faithfully served their countries in military service. However, one thing in particular that they share in common: THEY ARE HEROES. They join a long list of men and women from our church and community who have put their lives in harm’s way for the cause of freedom. They join a long list of faithful soldiers who have done heroic things because their character demanded it. They are our heroes.

As you go through your week, remember those who have paid a heavy price for freedom. Pray for them. Remember their families. Show love and support. Any anytime you see someone in uniform, please give them the honor and respect due them for their service to our country.

Dr. Derek


Welcome to the church family:

Lora Clarkson

Brenda Holt

Robert Holt Katie Harper Nathan Harper

Julie and I are celebrating our 21st wedding anniversary on Thursday and then on Friday, our family will be traveling to Mrytle Beach, SC for a week of vacation. I am so thankful for my family.


Please continue to pray for Ben as he recovers at Bethesda Naval hospital. Today they will be removing the ventilator and putting in a tracheotomy. Please remember Chuck, Debbie, Dan, Sam, and all their family.

Please remember Brenda Downing and her family in the loss of her sister, Samantha Dobbins.

Pray for Jay as he prepares to preach this weekend in my absence. Pray for the Holy Spirit to provide clarity as he teaches on the importance of communication in the home.

Pray for our Honduras mission team as they make final preparations for their trip on June 25 – July 1.

Pray for our first team to China in August. Pray for our college students as they are in the process of raising funds for the trip. We are anticipating a cost of about 2700 – 3000 per person. I am convinced the Lord will provide. He is so faithful. I plan to walk about 20 miles while we are in China, and you can sponsor me per mile if you feel led. All resources I collect will be divided among our students. Call or come by the office if you have any questions.