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God Knows the Plans

School Opening Service

God Knows the Plans

Text: Jeremiah 29:10-13


There are only a few left who would remember this.  It was the Spring of 2008.  Christ the King had been given a small grant to start up a preschool.  The search was on to find a location.  We had been renting out Wadsworth Elementary School for worship, but we had no place to start the preschool.  At the time, there weren’t a lot of spaces available in Palm Coast.

One of the first sites we looked at was the empty space attached to the gas station way over I-95 on the corner of Palm Coast Parkway and Clubhouse Dr.  A contract was being worked out, but the owners became afraid of insurance liability with a school and they backed out.  We didn’t know it, but that was a very good thing.  Then we looked at one of the retail spaces behind Goodwill.  But that was way too small.

Then we looked at the strip mall on Palm Coast Parkway right next to Sears.  Right now the spaces are occupied by Massey.  They were two big open spaces—big enough to seat both our Sunday morning worship and to host our preschool.  It was perfect!  No more lugging things in and out of Wadsworth every Sunday, dripping sweat and wasting time.  One ministry location for both the church and the school.  And a decent price, too!  It was perfect!  Quickly we signed the contract.

I’ll never forget the excitement I had on that one Sunday as I pulled the keys out of my pocket and announced we soon would be moving to a  new, permanent.  Everyone (which was about 25 people back then) cheered.  But that very next week the city of Palm Coast said they wouldn’t allow a playground area there and we had to cancel the contract.

Dejected, the search went on.  The next location was the landscaping business in Bunnell next to the campground and the storage facilities, across from Church on the Rock.  It was spacious and very affordable.  A contractor made drawings for the renovations.  A contract was drawn up.  It looked promising—until the agent didn’t return my phone calls.  Finally, two weeks later he got back to me to say that he sold it out from under us to someone else. Read the rest of this entry

The Time Was Right

1st Sunday after Christmas

The Time Was Right

Text: Galatians 4:4-7


Take a hat and put 10 coins in it.  Mark one of the coins with a black “X.”  Now put on a blindfold and try to pick out your marked coin.  Your odds are simple.  You have a one in ten chance of picking the right coin.

Next take silver dollars.  Mark one with a black “X.”  Now cover the entire state of Texas with silver dollars stacked two high.  Put on a blindfold.  Travel anywhere you want in the state and try to pick out your marked coin.  Your odds are not so good.  In fact, they are 1 in 1017, or 10 with 17 zeroes after it.

Scientists, mathematicians, and statisticians have done studies and calculations to figure out what the odds are that Jesus would fulfill eight prophecies.  They were some of the basic prophecies, like Micah’s prophecy that the Savior would be born in Bethlehem, or David’s prophecy about Jesus being crucified.  They odds were 1 in 1017!

But there’s a problem with that calculation.  Jesus fulfilled more than eight prophecies.  The scholars than calculated the odds of Jesus fulfilling 48 Old Testament prophecies.  They found the odds to be 10157, or 10 with 157 zeroes after it.  To illustrate that, you could think of the tiniest electrons that are a part of atoms.  If you counted 250 electrons every minute of every day for 19 million years straight, you would have 10157 and one inch of electrons.  Now put on a blindfold and try and pick one marked electron out of that bunch.  That’s 1 in 10157!

But there’s a problem with that calculation.  Jesus fulfilled more than 48 prophecies.  In fact, Jesus fulfilled more than 300 prophecies!  Scientists say that once you get over 1050 that the odds are more or less impossible.  So 48 prophecies were 10157, and thus more than 300 prophecies fulfilled are odds so small that impossible isn’t even in the ballpark of the right word. Read the rest of this entry

To Him Be Glory For Ever and Ever

Christ the King Sunday

To Him Be Glory For Ever and Ever

Text: Revelation 1:4-8


How do you explain the unexplainable?  How do you describe the indescribable?  How do you express the inexpressible?  How do you communicate with you human words something that can’t fit inside of human brains?

Who is Jesus?  What is Jesus like?  What has Jesus done?  Why is Jesus important?  What will Judgment Day be like?  What will heaven be like?

Questions near impossible to answer.  Concepts near impossible to understand.  Thankfully Jesus himself gives us answers to all these questions in the words that he himself gave to his apostle John in the first chapter of Revelation.  As we sift through these precious words this morning we’ll only be able to join John in saying:  To Him Be Glory from Beginning to End! Read the rest of this entry

Worship Our Extraordinary King Who Gives Extraordinary Blessings

The 5th Anniversary of Christ the King Lutheran Church

Worship Our Extraordinary King Who Gives Extraordinary Blessings

Text:  John 19:19-22, 28-30


What were we thinking?  We must have been crazy!  We must have been out of our minds!  Five years and two days ago, six adults and two babies came over to my old red brick house on Rycrest Lane here in Palm Coast.  It wasn’t a social gathering though.  It was the first organizational meeting for a group that was supposed to start a new mission church in Palm Coast, FL.  But I don’t think we knew what we were signing up for.  Actually, I definitely know we had no clue what we were signing up for.

It sounded like a novel idea.  Send a young pastor fresh out of the Seminary.  He’ll be a little green, but he’ll be eager to work.  (And he can’t say “NO” when it’s an assignment from the Seminary!)  There were these few families living in the area and driving to Our Savior’s Lutheran Church in Port Orange.  Why not start a church in this growing city?

Whoever thought of that idea must have been a little crazy.  It’s not like this was a “super start” with lots of members or lots of money from a mother church.  We had just a handful of people and barely enough money given from our church body to survive.  We didn’t have any land.  We didn’t have any offices.  The first Bible classes were held in living rooms.  Worship took place in a dingy back auxiliary room at Wadsworth Elementary School.  What were we thinking?  We must have been crazy to start this church called Christ the King! Read the rest of this entry

This is a Different Kind of King

Palm Sunday

This is a Different Kind of King

Text:  Philippians 2:5-11


Try to contain your disappointment and sadness.  It was reported last year that since 2010 the total net worth of the world’s richest royals has been down nine percent.  I know.  It’s just horrible.  But somehow they will survive.  King Adulyadej of Thailand might make it somehow with his $30 billion net worth.  So might the king of Saudi Arabia with $18 billion.

Maybe we should be concerned about a few others though?  Prince Albert II of Monaco is only worth $1 billion.  And Queen Elizabeth isn’t even a billionaire!  She’s only worth $500 million!  Then there is Spelling Manor, the 60,000 s.f. mansion in California that only sold for $85 million when it had been listed at $150 million.  Wow the economy is bad!  Ok, maybe we aren’t too concerned about these things.

We’ve become used to this though.  When you have power, you flaunt it.  People serve you and wait on your beck and call.  When you have money you spend it like it is burning a hole in your pocket.  (It will be interesting to see which of the three Mega Millions lottery winners loses all their winnings first.)  When you are popular you use your influence for benefit and gain and more profit.  Whether you are a celebrity, an athlete, a politician, or a ruler, and whether you are in America or any other country on the planet, when you have power, authority, and wealth you use it, you flaunt it, and you love it. Read the rest of this entry