AFTERMATH!

Many have written me in the past days regarding my comments to what occurred over the past week in the city of Charlottesville. As a person, who has experience racism and hatred on the front line I was literally taken back by what I saw as the angry mob paraded through the University of Virginia’s campus.

Hate and intolerance has been normalized; as well as leadership dysfunctionality. Our President has lost his voice. In less than a year of taking the office of the highest office in the land he has brought nothing less than embarrassment to this position as the leader of the free world. How can you lead a free world and not lead your own country in such a dire time of need and healing?

Slavery was the most distinguishing reason for the civil war. I invite you to read the confederate constitution. These articles state clearly that the White man is superior to the black man and his sole purpose is to serve the superior race. This ideology continues to be perpetuated throughout the ages. These young people that were carrying the torches had to be taught the hate that rages in their heart.

As a part of the group who integrated schools in the state of Georgia in 1965. I have been arrested and beaten by police. I still have the marks on my face. Until America actually saw the pictures of bloody Sunday on the Edmund Pettus Selma bridge did the country realize what was happening in the South under Jim Crow laws. Many of us today never have experience the level of arrogance and racism of the 1950’s and 60’s.

Religion is endlessly pliable. So long as pastors or priests (or in this case, televangelists) are willing to apply their theological creativity to serve political demands, religious institutions can be bent to advance any policy goal. With remarkably little prodding, Christian churches in Germany fanned the flames for Hitler. The Southern Baptist Church was organized specifically to protect slavery and white supremacy from the influence of their brethren in the North, a role that has never ceased to distort its identity, beliefs and practices.

Southern Baptists remained at the vanguard of the fight to preserve Jim Crow until the fight was lost. A generation later you might hear Southern Baptists mention that Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., was a Baptist minister. They are less likely to explain that King was not permitted to worship in a Southern Baptist Church. African-American Baptists had their own parallel institutions, a structure that continues today.

“The cross and the Confederate flag cannot co-exist without one setting the other on fire.” When I see the confederate flag, it reminds me of a dark time when those that waved it in my face were not historians but bigots as they spurred out words of hate as I was called the “N word” for over three years.

As a nation divided we have become a laughing stock to the world, as we argue whether a man that thinks he’s a woman can still use the woman’s restroom and should we stand or sit during the playing of the national anthem. These are the questions I face whenever traveling abound to Europe and Africa.

Years ago, President Obama stated we were not a Christian nation. This caused an uproar on many fronts; however, if you understand what Christianity is really about this there is a level of truism in this statement. You cannot be a Christian nation and ignore the right of any man to be loved, to be treated with dignity and equality. The uproar about Charlottesville must be so violently loud in White American, that it places fear in the hearts of every people group who dare to threaten the peace of our nation with any culturally divisive rhetoric or demonstration.

Men’s hearts have created this environment and what’s going on in the world today. By merely refining their rhetoric and activating evangelical congregations, a new generation of Southern conservatives grow ever closer to winning a fight their forebears once thought was lost.

So, you may ask what can I do to change this world, our county and community. You must first start.

• Become part of or develop a Racial Reconciliation Group in your church or community
• Elect Politicians that address the real issues of your heart and the Word of God
• Get involved in your schools, community and local government
• Teach history of African Americans in public schools as a part of the core curriculum- not an elective and should be regular history.

In the words of Denzel Washington, “Don’t confuse movement for progress, you can run in place all day and never get anywhere.” The church has a withered hand that needs to be stretched forth for it to be healed. We cannot pray in love and live in hate and still think we are worshipping God.

Relationships are built, we have a lot of fellowship but few really understand what a relationship is about. A relationship is significantly different than a friendship. The enemy’s job is to divide. Don’t fall into the trap the devil and the media has laid out. Don’t let them divide us as a people and as a church.

It is imperative that we find the moral compass for our country. When you think about it, we all came here in different ships but we are now in the same boat!

This is the Voice of the Overseer!

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Do you need to belong to a church to be a Christian?

If Faith is a personal thing, so why can’t you just have an individual relationship with God? Even as a Bishop and Pastor I am often asked this same question year after year.
Lots of people wonder about that, usually after a bad experience with Christians or so-called church hurt. If you never go to church can I be effective toward the expansion of the Kingdom of God.

• How can you learn to love if no one else is around?
• Can you learn humility living alone?
• Is it possible to learn patience, kindness or gentleness in isolation?

Developing spiritual fruit requires being around people. “To save souls, you must bring them together. Let me take it a step further. Building spiritual strength requires other people, but not just people you choose to hang with. God’s kind of love is best learned when we must be around people we haven’t specifically chosen as friends. Living around people we like is fairly easy.

Doing life with just anybody is more challenging and forces us to grow. We have no choice about who our parents or brothers or sisters will be; yet we are expected to love them. Neither can we choose who will or will not be in our spiritual family.

Anyone who professes “Jesus is Lord” is to be welcomed in the church, where we encourage and challenge each other to grow in the faith. Living in this challenging but rewarding environment helps us grow and learn about love, humility and the very fruits the Lord calls us to produce (Galatians 5:22-23).

The Bible says Christians are each a different member of a body (Romans 12:4-8). Can you be an eye without a neck, or a foot without a knee? I suppose it’s possible to be a disconnected member without a body, but that’s hardly what God had in mind for you (Hebrews 10:24-25). You won’t function right. Being a Christian means contributing to the body, letting it contribute to your life, and submitting to the teaching and correction of others.

Can you be a Christian without the church? I suppose so. But what kind of Christian would you be?

This is the Voice of the Overseer

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Welcome to the Radical Morality

Welcome to the Radical New Morality

A little over a year ago I posted a blog entitled we are in the “Twilight Zone.” This was in view of the changing social landscape of western culture as we continue our downslide into moral chaos. History has a way of repeating itself. The consequences of this brave new world of total tolerance; total license and total freedom make those of the 1960s seen almost tame by comparison.

How did we come to this? Let’s start by casting God out of the schools. A series of U.S. Supreme Court decisions beginning with the 1962 and 1963 bans on prayer and the Bible from schools virtually ordered God, the Bible and the Ten Commandments from our public schools. With the Judeo-Christian ethic effectively barred from the K-12 classroom, a generation further indoctrinated by the secular humanism of the college classroom has come to see religious beliefs and traditional values as no longer relevant to the advancement of society.

A nation obsessed with acceptance of every possible lifestyle has forgotten the stern warning of the God it claims to trust: “Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness,” Isaiah 50:20.

Consequently, the government has made the public schools laboratories for social experimentation. In May 2016 the Obama administration, through the Department of Education, issued a directive requiring public schools to allow transgender students to use bathrooms and locker rooms consistent with their “chosen sexual identity.”

In other words, a boy who thinks of himself as a girl can now legally enter a girl’s bathroom, and vice versa. But nothing in this ruling protects the rights of the vast majority of children who want privacy in bathrooms and locker rooms and who might be shocked by this behavior.

This is the new morality, and I ask you who is tolerate now?

This is the Voice of the Overseer

 

 

 

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God Still Needs Laborers

It’s the 11th hour, and God still seeks laborers to reap His harvest!

“Again he went out about the sixth and ninth hour, and did likewise. 6 And about the eleventh hour he went out, and found others standing idle, and saith unto them, Why stand ye here all the day idle? 7 They say unto him, Because no man hath hired us.  Matthew 20:5-7, KJV God is calling “11th Hour” Christians to get with the program. Are you an 11th hour Christian? Are you just tried of Church as usual?  I am!

In this parable about the kingdom of God, Jesus described the last generation before His return. He described a group of people who were standing around doing nothing, people who were idle and non-productive. Jesus revealed God’s plan for these kinds of people: get to work in the vineyard!

It’s still the 11th hour and God continues to look for laborers who will go after His harvest! Jesus is still seeking workers who will work the vineyard, fish for men and reach the lost. He’s looking for idle people who are willing to start using some elbow grease, get their hands dirty and break a sweat.

Are you an 11th hour idle Christian? Have you been standing around? Wasting time? Producing little or no fruit? Doing nothing? Complaining? Why not throw caution to the wind and get busy serving God? Why not go to work in God’s vineyard? Why not be bold and share the love of God and the good news of Jesus with the lost, weary and scattered sheep in your sphere of influence?

Listen to what Jesus said, “But when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were weary and scattered, like sheep having no shepherd. Then He said to His disciples, ‘The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.'” (Matthew 9:36-38, NKJV)

I don’t know about you, but I am stirred up! I’m fired up and more passionate than ever about reaching the lost and doing our part to work with Jesus to build His Church! I want to be a faithful 11th hour laborer. I want to give the Lord 100% and do everything I can to reap His harvest and reach the precious fruit of the earth—the lost and broken—in my sphere of influence. How about you?

This is the Voice of the Overseer

PASTORREID

The Voice of the Overseer

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Is this a Trump Win, or Clinton Loss?

thqvq1l6dh As I returned home from church Tuesday evening the media had all but crowned and inaugurated Hillary Clinton as the 45th President of the United States. They spoke excessively of the celebration party and quoted from the acceptance speech that she would be the President for all Americans.

We have witnessed what seems to be an eternity of a presidential campaign that was both arduous and divisive. To say I am glad this is finally over would be an understatement.

Trump beat Hillary – not so much based upon their policies or (lack of) popularity, but primarily because this is how American politics works. Since we’ve just completed eight years of a Democrat Administration, it’s time for the people to revert and choose a Republican this time. That’s the way our two-party system works. We move to the left for eight years until the pendulum swings too far. Then we move back to the right for eight years and get tired of that as well.

As a Bishop and Pastor, I must admit I was not surprised at the outcome of this election at all. As I viewed my Facebook posts this morning there were a mixture of posts with some believing the world as we know it would end with a Trump presidency, to those who believe the second coming had occurred with his election. How can this be? How can we all serve the same God, preach from the same Word yet be so different in our values and political beliefs. I remember people calling President Obama the Anti-Christ when he was elected the second time.

What’s most disconcerting is that we not only face a divided nation but a divided church today. Regardless of who is president we are told in the Word that we are to pray for those in authority (I Tim. 2:1-5). Although I disagreed with many of the policies implemented and supported by the President I chose not to use social media to blast or speak against a standing president.

What just happened? The power of the media and so-called polls has been broken. The shift of the country to the left has been like a rubber band that’s been stretched and snapped back. The American people have spoken regarding their need for change once again.

We are seeing a rebellion and the desire for a new direction for our nation. This mimics what occurred in the United Kingdom with the Brexit earlier this year. Well, what do we do now as the church? If you did not vote for Donald Trump stop believing that all hope is gone, if you voted for Donald Trump stop saying that he is the answer for America’s woes. Our hope is in Christ. Stop acting like spoiled children, Christ is our foundation.

The election is over now, as I look at the map with states colored in blue and red remember, we are still on the same team at the end of the day. We are Americans and part of the greatest country on earth where we have the right to vote and express our opinions as I am doing now. Our differences make us who we are.

Remember, we are citizens of the Kingdom of God, this world is not our home, we are merely passing through. As believers, let’s reflect the hope that is in Christ and not a man.

This is the Voice of the Overseer!

 

 

 

 

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A House Divided

In the gospel Jesus said, “a house divided against itself cannot stand.” Never in my Christian walk have I witnessed such division in the body of Christ. The mere mention of a political party or a particular candidate can quickly divide a congregation that appears to be walking in unity and love into factions that quickly become non-Christ like and argumentative.

We are witnessing the vacuum that is being created by the exit of the Spirit of God or the Holy Spirit from our lives. It has been said that if the Holy Ghost were to leave many churches no one would know the difference.

The organized church is torn with strife and distrust. Ultimately, the battle is not so much between conservatives and liberals, evangelicals and activists, or fundamentalists and modernists. The issue now is between belief and unbelief: Is Christianity true or false, real or unreal?

What is deadly to the church is when the external forms of religion are maintained while their substance is discarded. This we call practical atheism. Practical atheism appears when we live as if there were no God. The externals continue, but man becomes the central thrust of devotion as the attention of religious concern shifts away from man’s devotion to God to man’s devotion to man, bypassing God. The “ethic” of Christ continues in a superficial way, having been ripped from its supernatural, transcendent, and divine foundation.

Biblical Christianity knows nothing of a false dichotomy between devotion to God and concern for man. The Great Commandment incorporates both. It is because of the reality of Christ that ethics are vital. It is because the cross was a real event that the sacraments can minister to us. It is because Christ defeated death that the church offers hope. It is because of Jesus’ real act of atonement that our forgiveness is more than just a feeling.

The church’s life and her creed may be distinguished but never separated. It is possible for the church to believe all the right things and do the wrong things. It is possible also to believe the wrong things and do the right things (but not for very long). We need right faith initiating right action. Honest faith—joined with honest action—bears witness to a real God and a real Christ.

It’s past time now for the true Christ follower to stand up and realize that the church is not a building or somewhere we go, but the church is who we are.

As we prepare for the upcoming election in November now is time for the church to pray not only for unity within but for unity in our nation.

This is the Voice of Overseer!

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The Apathetic Church

There is a strong spirit of apathy in the Body of Christ today. This week I witnessed the enemy in force, strongly organized, educated and literally on fire for their cause, while I could literally count the pastors from our area on my hand. The unity of the church today draws no comparison to the force and urgency of the enemy’s agenda.

The occasion was a School Board meeting to discuss changes to the discrimination policy for transgendered students. This would allow these students who are biologically male but identify as female to use the ladies’ restroom, locker rooms and participate in the sport of which they identify with.

I do not support any transgender bathroom policy for our public schools. Transgenderism and “biological subjectivism” is a politically correct demand that everyone agrees to participate in the mental distortions of a few individuals who suffer from a psychological disconnect from their biological realities.

As a former civil rights proponent in the south I am insulted by comparisons of the LGBT’s plight to that of the 1960’s Negro in America. We no longer have male or female genders but we now have the boldness to self-identify who we actually are based on what we wear or which gender we believe we are at the moment.  If you do your research years ago this would have been categorized as gender confusion or a mental illness.

This is a complete contradiction to the known science on biology and physical reality. This mental distortion is now being thrust onto children as part of a sick, demented political agenda to appease the most lunatic fringe elements of the political spectrum.

We now live in a nation where parents who need to be locked away in mental institutions are turning their children into gender confused basket cases who may also end up needing psychiatric intervention. The political powers in Washington are encouraging this cycle of mental illness, child mutilation and horrible suffering among children who are now being shoved toward transgenderism because it appeases the perverse political appetites of mentally ill adults. Moreover, there have been threats to remove government funding from schools who fail to comply with this politically correct agenda.

The government is now attempting to interfere with the mental health of our children, too! The transgender programming of children is nothing less than child abuse and mental illness run amok. We were created male and female by a holy God who we have chosen to disregard in our plight for intelligence and identify as to who we ready are.

My heart sank as only a handful of Christians attended or even dared to voice their option on this subject matter. In these times of declining church grow, disruption in the body of Christ, and the expansion of secular humanism when will we awaken to fulfill the call of God that is upon every believer.

Dear Church, there is no need to pray after we have lost the battle if you won’t come to the fight.

This is the Voice of the Overseer!

 

 

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Is it 2016 or 1966

I hope the title of this blog got your attention. As a child of the 60’s I would have thought we would have been past the days of police brutality, racial prejudicial and violence.  I am from the deep south where Jim Crow was the law of the land as a child.

I was chosen to be part of a group to integrate the schools in 1964 where we were exposed to levels of abuse that many could never image. Today when I turn on the computer or television the news of another black man killed at the hands of police or another black man has become normal in our culture.  This is unfortunate given as a society we have grown accustomed to violence and death; moreover, the first ten minutes of the local news broadcast is mostly devoted to who was killed on the streets of the DC, Maryland, or Virginia (DMV) area.

Too often we hear the cry for more gun control; however, criminals do not abide by the laws of the land. Guns don’t kill people, people kill people. In the bible Cain slew his brother Abel and there were no guns around.

You cannot legislate morality; laws cannot change the hearts of the individual that is prejudice or an outright racist. Guns are not the only problem; people are. You may not particularity care for the angle in which I am addressing this issue. As a culture we no longer value life. We have embraced a culture of death and insensitivity to vehemence in our society. Now before you jump to conclusions be advised I am considered by many as a black conservative.

During the fourth of July weekend in the city of Chicago there were over sixty shootings with five deaths. Unfortunately, a majority of these were black men and none were not killed by police but by another black man. My heart was overwhelmed with the events of the past week; however, marches and protests with the mantra that Black Lives Matter can only take us so far regarding awareness to the plight of police violence.

This past year more than 5,000 young black men are killed by other black men. Concurrently, this number is only a fraction of the number of black babies killed through abortion yearly. However, no one is marching in the streets for these souls.

Our country needs a heart change that can only come about with a national awakening of the love of God through his son Jesus Christ. It’s time for the church to not merely have services but to be relevant in today’s society.

My favorite football team, the Atlanta Falcons have a chant that says. “Rise Up.” It’s time for the church to rise up now.

This is the Voice of the Overseer!

 

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United and Disunited

United and Disunited

Sunday morning, we woke up the learn of one of the greatest tragedies in our nation’s history. Although it is being touted as the worst terror attack in our history it is fair surpassed by the African and Native Americans slandered at Rosewood and Wounded Knee respectively. This was not just an attack on the LGBT Community but an attack on America and what we stand for.

Within a matter of hours, the LGBT community rallied to come together and address the needs for blood and finances for the victims and families. To witness what happens when a group is united and has a single focus is amazing. It reminds me of the story in the scriptures of the Tower of Babel and the Lord stated there is nothing they can’t accomplish.

Unfortunately, what’s happening in the homosexual community is not occurring in the church. The church today is divided, littered with scandal, suffers from a lack of focus (what are we called to do) and dying as people walk away every day. Over a thousand pastors and Christian leaders walk away from the ministry every month. In addition, churches are closing at a record pace given their failure to adjust and address how to reach Generation X and the Millennials.

Churches no longer experience growth through new conversions given most growth comes from people transferring from one church to another. While in the past there were generations in the same church; today the average church member has been a part of at least three churches in the last ten years.

Before all the church people join to condemn me let me say this, is homosexual behavior sinful, absolutely. Is embracing homosexual desires an act of defiance against a holy and just God? Most definitely. But are homosexual sinners worse than those that come to church every Sunday but never come to Christ or merely masquerade as Christians? Not by a long shot.

As long as the church stays in a disunited state with pastors failing to stand for righteousness and members hopping from church to church through offense or even out of the church we will slowly continue our lack of influence on today’s culture. While we started as the culture of our nation and later becoming the sub-culture we find ourselves in the position of being counter culture.

What’s the solution? Unity. The scriptures say it much better than I ever could.

Psalms 133 Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!2 It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron’s beard: that went down to the skirts of his garments. 3 As the dew of Hermon, and as the dew that descended upon the mountains of Zion: for there the Lord commanded the blessing, even life for evermore.

Whenever there is unity there was the anointing, whenever there is agreement, and whenever the people of God were on one accord, God showed up!

This is the Voice of the OverseerPASTORREID

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This is Just the Begining

ALL GENDER

If you thought the Supreme Court decision regarding homosexual marriage was the end of the conversation you probably have realized by now that this was far from the truth.

I will not use the play on words that the media has skillfully used to brain wash most Americans even those in the church regarding gay marriage. The term for homosexual marriage was changed to “Marriage Equality,” as a means of appealing to the general public in a more positive manner. Ironically, the clergy protection laws passed by North Carolina and Mississippi are being called gay discriminatory laws. Note the emphasis on discrimination and equality once again.

Years ago a member of my church gave me a book entitled the “Gay Agenda.”  As I read this novel, I must admit the ideology and goals of the movement seem so farfetched that I didn’t take these goals as being serious. I basically stated in my spirit, “Not in my lifetime.”

Our country is quickly becoming the laughing stock of the world as we relentlessly focus and ponder on addressing entitlements, political party views and which bathroom to use.

We no longer have male or female genders but we now have the boldness to self-identify who we actually are based on what we wear or which gender we feel we are.  If you do your research years ago this would have been categorized as gender confusion or a mental illness.

Romans 1:21 Yes, they knew God, but they wouldn’t worship him as God or even give him thanks. And they began to think up foolish ideas of what God was like. The result was that their minds became dark and confused. 22 Claiming to be wise, they became utter fools instead. 23 And instead of worshiping the glorious, ever-living God, they worshiped idols made to look like mere people, or birds and animals and snakes .

The President recently issued a memorandum informing the public school systems to allow students access bathrooms and locker rooms consistent with their gender identities. Failure to adhere to these instructions would result in loss of government funding under Title Nine. This administration has pushed more social change than any other and they have kept their promise of changing America.

Romans 1:26 That is why God abandoned them to their shameful desires. Even the women turned against the natural way to have sex and instead indulged in sex with each other. 27 And the men, instead of having normal sexual relationships with women, burned with lust for each other. Men did shameful things with other men and, as a result, suffered within themselves the penalty they so richly deserved. 28 When they refused to acknowledge God, he abandoned them to their evil minds and let them do things that should never be done.

The LGBT activists’ end goal is not ruling over the bathroom, it’s obliterating the family. If there are sexual distinctions between what used to be male and female people are left to identify, live and love as they please with no references of God or boundaries of a society. Many conservatives and even LGBT activists are missing the forest for the trees.

What we are really talking about is the abolition of sex. And it is sex that the trans project is serving to abolish legally, under the guise of something called ‘the gender binary.’  Its endgame is a society in which everyone is legally de-sexed, or no longer legally male or female.

And once you basically redefine humanity as sexless you end up with a de-humanized society in which there can be no legal ‘mother’ or ‘father’ or ‘son’ or ‘daughter’ or ‘husband’ or ‘wife’ without permission from the State.  Government documents are already erasing the terms.  In such a society, the most intimate human relationships take a hit. The family ends up abolished.” Are you awake yet!

This is the Voice of the Overseer!

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