Monthly Archives: October 2009

love is blind

This story will absolutely inspire you! Click: Blind Man Adopts Blind Son


back home

We just arrived home from a quick trip to Guatemala. We enjoyed the Casa Shalom Assembly and we were blown away by the plans that are in place. More details will follow but be aware, some great things are happening in this beautiful place.

Now to hit the ground running, getting ready for a great weekend at Maranatha!

New series this Sunday: The Fresh Prince of Egypt!

Casa Shalom Assembly

Letha and I are flying to Guatemala tomorrow to attend the Casa Shalom Orphanage Assembly. Take a look at the details: Casa Shalom Assembly

packing up

We are leaving on Tuesday for a three day trip to Guatemala. The first annual Casa Shalom Assembly will be held this week and we are headed there on Tuesday. This is an event to highlight the work of the orphanage and to secure more support. Former directors, current and former volunteers and supporters will gather to celebrate the great things that are happening.

Tonight, Letha and I loaded up four large suitcases (200 pounds) of shoes and clothes for the kids at Casa Shalom orphanage. While this is a very busy time at our church, these trips provide some much needed life for my spirit. I am looking forward to it.

As usual, I will post a few pictures upon our return.

If you think about it, say a prayer on behalf of the people in Guatemala and those in needy countries around the world.


a former friend

It is a strange thing to know a convicted murderer. Letha and I were close friends of the people discussed below. Several years ago, we spent a lot of time together with them, both in Florida and in Minnesota. It is a sad ending to an unbelievable story. Our prayers go out to the Tillman’s daughters and to Janet’s parents.

The Shelby County Reporter (Alabama) Newspaper reported this yesterday:

Jury finds Timothy Tillman Guilty of Murder

COLUMBIANA — Timothy Tillman stood stiff, silent and motionless Oct. 23 as the jury announced its verdict — guilty as charged.

Nearly four years to the day after 40-year-old Janet Tillman was shot and killed in her house on Carr Drive in Vincent, her husband was convicted of her murder.

“It feels very good. Justice has finally been served,” said Charles Harper, Janet Tillman’s father. “It’s been four years, and we finally have justice.”

A jury of six white men, one black man and five white women found Timothy Tillman, former pastor of the Revival Church in Vincent, guilty of one count of murder and one count of forgery.

The jury’s hour and 45 minutes of deliberation capped off five days of hearings, during which assistant district attorneys Alan Miller and Roger Hepburn convinced the jury Timothy Tillman intentionally shot his wife in the back with a shotgun.

The fatal shooting occurred on Oct. 26, 2005, as Janet Tillman was helping Timothy Tillman carry several shotguns into the couple’s bedroom.

Tillman also was convicted of signing his wife’s name on a $5,000 check months after she died.

Although defense attorney Erskine Mathis attempted to convince the jury Timothy Tillman shot his wife accidently when the shotgun discharged unexpectedly, the jury sided with the prosecution’s depiction of the incident.

The pair of assistant district attorneys told the jury Timothy Tillman killed his wife to collect her life insurance money before he moved to Lake Wales, Fla., to be with his girlfriend, Molly.

Before the jury entered deliberation, Hepburn blasted Timothy Tillman for faking emotion and lying during police interrogations, and accused him of taking many precautions to make the shooting appear accidental.

“He’s a smart man, as much as it hurts to compliment him,” Hepburn said of Timothy Tillman. “During those interrogations, he told you everything about what he wanted you to know.

“One thing that makes me mad about this case is that it has all been about Tim Tillman,” Hepburn added. “And that just feeds his sick ego.”

Circuit Court Judge Dan Reeves ordered Timothy Tillman to remain incarcerated in the Shelby County Jail until his sentencing hearing on Dec. 14.

a sundown walk on the beach

Letha and I took the opportunity to walk on the beach this evening. It was a beautiful night. Enjoy a couple pictures I took.

some awesome news!

I am thrilled to share the great news that our Beach Service has a NEW LOCATION! If you are a regular reader, you know that I posted a couple weeks ago about an obstacle that we encountered in regard to our Beach Service. For almost nine years, Maranatha Church has conducted an outdoor sunrise service on the beach every Sunday at 7:00 AM. I know, for those of you up north, it sounds really glamorous. It’s not very glamorous in July when it is 90 degrees with 90% humidity! It is also no fun in hurricane-force winds! We have only missed one Sunday in about five years.

The County Parks and Recreation Department informed us a month or so ago that we would no longer be able to conduct our service at the park where we have been. We tried our best to work with them in the fulfillment of their regulations, to no avail. There was a real chance that we were going to lose this service altogether.

A lot of prayer went into this process. We also had to do a lot of teaching and leading by example as to how we are to respond to situations like these. It would have been very easy to become defensive. We could easily have protested with the County. We decided to take another approach.

God has come through big time for us. On Monday, the Town of Palm Beach Shores gave the OK for us to conduct the Sunrise Service in their Community Center (pictured above). When I say, “Community Center”, you may conjure up images of a gray gymnasium building that smells like, well a gymnasium. Not the case! This is one of the more beautiful locations in our County. Get this: we will be worshiping on the second floor (elevator included) of a beach-front building where, in the comfort of air-conditioning, we can see the sun rise over the Atlantic Ocean! There is a huge wall of windows facing east, this will be the backdrop for our sunrise service! The first time I walked in this building, about a year ago, I started hoping for a chance to use the facility for worship. Now, it has become a reality.

We consider this a huge opportunity to do something awesome for God. The Town of Palm Beach Shores is located on the southern end of Singer Island, which has a population of 29,975 residents. Get this: There is no other church on the entire island! We have the incredible opportunity and responsibility to share Christ with this entire community!

I think this entire turn of events can be credited to a few considerations:
Faithfulness – we have ministered for nearly nine years outdoors, through all kinds of weather, through the distractions of dogs barking and fire trucks driving by and loud motorcycles, and we have remained consistent through difficult times. God rewards faithfulness.
Good people – we have found favor with town leadership and they are going above and beyond to facilitate our service.
God’s goodness – this is His Church, He has decided to bless us immensely.

Church at the Beach is moving to the front burner of our vision. This is an excellent chance for us to fulfill our God-given mission of “Changing Lives by Connecting People with Jesus Christ”.

We couldn’t be much more excited!