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Monday, July 15, 2019

LET ME BACK UP (audio)


Our series preaching through the book of Romans brings us now to Romans chapter 5 and a  message about the moments when you need to step back and re-focus on the basics.  The title of the sermon is:  LET ME BACK UP.


Listen well.

If you can’t get the audio on your device, visit the main podcast page at http://revandersongraves.podomatic.com/   

 --Anderson T. Graves II   is a writer, community organizer and consultant for education, ministry, and rural leadership development.

Rev. Anderson T. Graves II is pastor of Bailey Tabernacle CME Church in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. He writes the popular blog: A Word to the Wise at www.andersontgraves.blogspot.com

Follow me on twitter @AndersonTGraves 

Click here to support this blog with a donation.  Or go to andersontgraves.blogspot.com and click on the DONATE button on the right-hand sidebar. 


Support Bailey Tabernacle CME Church with a donation through Givelify
Givelify

Support by check or money order may be mailed to 
Bailey Tabernacle CME Church
1117 23rd Avenue
Tuscaloosa, Alabama 35401

Thursday, July 11, 2019

WHO DO WE TRUST? GOD. THAT'S WHO.

In our series preaching through the book of Romans, we are in chapter 4 with a message titled: WHO DO WE TRUST?  GOD. THAT'S WHO.

Listen well.

If you can’t get the audio on your device, visit the main podcast page at http://revandersongraves.podomatic.com/   

 --Anderson T. Graves II   is a writer, community organizer and consultant for education, ministry, and rural leadership development.

Rev. Anderson T. Graves II is pastor of Bailey Tabernacle CME Church in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. He writes the popular blog: A Word to the Wise at www.andersontgraves.blogspot.com

Follow me on twitter @AndersonTGraves 

Click here to support this blog with a donation.  Or go to andersontgraves.blogspot.com and click on the DONATE button on the right-hand sidebar. 

Support Bailey Tabernacle CME Church with a donation through Givelify
Givelify

Support by check or money order may be mailed to 
Bailey Tabernacle CME Church
1117 23rd Avenue
Tuscaloosa, Alabama 35401

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

WHO ARE YOU GETTING YOUR ANSWERS FROM? (audio)

?This is the 3rd message in our series preaching through the book of Romans.  A look into Romans chapter 3 brings out the question: WHO ARE YOU GETTING YOUR ANSWERS FROM?


Listen well.


If you can’t get the audio on your device, visit the main podcast page at http://revandersongraves.podomatic.com/   

 --Anderson T. Graves II   is a writer, community organizer and consultant for education, ministry, and rural leadership development.

Rev. Anderson T. Graves II is pastor of Bailey Tabernacle CME Church in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. He writes the popular blog: A Word to the Wise at www.andersontgraves.blogspot.com

Follow me on twitter @AndersonTGraves 

Click here to support this blog with a donation.  Or go to andersontgraves.blogspot.com and click on the DONATE button on the right-hand sidebar. 


Support Bailey Tabernacle CME Church with a donation through Givelify
Givelify


Support by check or money order may be mailed to 
Bailey Tabernacle CME Church
1117 23rd Avenue
Tuscaloosa, Alabama 35401


Sunday, June 16, 2019

DADDY ISSUES: A Father's Day Message (audio)

The Father’s Day sermon is about: DADDY ISSUES.


Listen well.


If you can’t get the audio on your device, visit the main podcast page at http://revandersongraves.podomatic.com/   

 --Anderson T. Graves II   is a writer, community organizer and consultant for education, ministry, and rural leadership development.

Rev. Anderson T. Graves II is pastor of Bailey Tabernacle CME Church in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. He writes the popular blog: A Word to the Wise at www.andersontgraves.blogspot.com

Follow me on twitter @AndersonTGraves 

Click here to support this blog with a donation.   Or donate to Bailey Tabernacle with Givelify.
Givelify
Support by check or money order may be mailed to 
Bailey Tabernacle CME Church
1117 23rd Avenue
Tuscaloosa, Alabama 35401



Tuesday, June 11, 2019

ASHES OR EMBERS

For the record, the events referenced in this post happened before any relevant ban on backyard burning. 

I’ve been setting a lot of fires lately.    No, I haven’t finally snapped and decided to burn it all down.


I had some boxes of old office papers taking up space in my garage.  There was the off-chance that something in there had an old credit card number on it so I couldn’t send it all to the landfill, but it was too much for our little home paper shredder.  I (with my country tail) had the AWESOME idea of dumping the folders into a metal trash can and lighting it all up all Hollywood
alleyway style. 

In the movies when someone tosses a lighter onto a pile of classified papers, the whole stack goes up in a column of flames and a few minutes later all that remains is a pile of ashes.   This may come as a shock, but ---- Hollywood lied.  Paper burns quickly.  Well, A paper burns quickly.  A folder stuffed with 5 years of sign-in sheets does not.  After an hour spraying lighter fluid and  stirring the folders I had a 1 inch layer of ash covering 4 feet of smoky, ashy, and thoroughly un-burned office papers.

All day.  That’s how long it took for fire to consume a few boxes of files.  All.  Frickin’. Day.  Two hours after sunset I gave up.  I sprayed the contents of the trash can with water from the hose.  Set the metal lid in place, took a looong shower and went to bed.  That was a Monday.

Friday, 4 days later I thought, “What the crap do I do with a trashcan full of ashes?”  I could have bagged it all up and put it in the dumpster; but then I thought, “Ashes.  Carbon.  Biodegraded.  The soil will absorb it,” so I turned the trash can over at the edge of the woods behind my house.  

A few minutes later, I saw smoke, FRESH smoke, coming out of the woods at the edge of my yard.  I got the hose and the shovel and carefully doused the tiny new fire I’d started.  And THAT was when I began reflecting on the difference between ASHES and EMBERS.

Ashes and embers are both the remains of a fire, and they look the same: grayed black, blackened gray, charred, powdered, withered, empty, fit for nothing but to be thrown out and trodden underfoot.  That’s what ashes are, but when the wind blows, you realize that embers are something different. 

A few minutes in the spring breeze and some of the dead-looking remains of my trash fire started glowing.  Some of the ashen pieces turned fire red.  They weren’t ashes.  They were EMBERS. 

Embers are the ashes that refused to die.   they were just waiting for a gust of oxygen on the breeze to ignite.    And they did not ignite gradually.  From cold and seemingly dead, at the touch of wind, the embers changed suddenly into red hot coals.  And the coals turned the pile of ashes into a fire.

WE all go through the fire.  People, systems, circumstances, sometimes just the ubiquitous entropy of a fallen world pile on intending to consume you, to make you into a withered, empty, used up nothing, to throw you down and trod you underfoot.  Ashes.

The weekend after Jesus was crucified, the disciples were all ashes: scattered, withered, defeated.  By Sunday afternoon they were already blowing in the wind, scattering to Emaus and wherever.  But when they encountered Jesus risen from the dead, and He breathed on them, and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit (John 20:22), they were re-ignited.  The light in them shone again and it wasn’t long before  there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them (Acts 2: 3).  

You don’t get to decide if or when you go through the fire, but you do get to choose what happens when the smoke clears.  You can accept the imposed role and lie in the dust until you’re swept away ---- like ashes. 

Or, you can inhale the breath of life and let your little light glow fire red.  You can receive the Holy Spirit and ignite.  With the Holy Spirit dwelling in you like fire shut up in your bones, you can rise from the ashes.

We all go through the fires of life, but those fires don’t have the last word.  We are hard-pressed on every side, yet not crushed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed—always carrying about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our body (2 Corinthians 4: 8-10). 

If you have Jesus you will get burned, but you will not be ashes.  With Jesus, you are ---- an EMBER. 

So, relax.  Pray.  Feel the breath of God moving over you and in you.  Breathe.  Now get up out of those ashes and go set the world on fire. 


 --Anderson T. Graves II   is a writer, community organizer and consultant for education, ministry, and rural leadership development.

Rev. Anderson T. Graves II is pastor of Bailey Tabernacle CME Church in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. He writes the popular blog: A Word to the Wise at www.andersontgraves.blogspot.com

Follow me on twitter @AndersonTGraves 

Click here to support this ministry with a donation.  Or go to andersontgraves.blogspot.com and click on the DONATE button on the right-hand sidebar. 


Support by check or money order may be mailed to 
Bailey Tabernacle CME Church
1117 23rd Avenue
Tuscaloosa, Alabama 35401

 or 
Givelify

Sunday, June 9, 2019

A RECIPE FOR SOMETHING AMAZING (audio)

This Sunday was Student Recognition Day (when we honor all our students from pre-K to college), Family Fun Day (when we share food and games in a kind of congregational family reunion), and Pentecost Sunday (the birthday of the Church when the Holy Spirit came upon the disciples).  The intersection of these celebrations reflects the intersection of special events in Acts chapter 2. 

All the pieces come together in a Divinely ordained way that we look at in a sermon titled: A RECIPE FOR SOMETHING AMAZING.


Listen well.


If you can’t get the audio on your device, visit the main podcast page at http://revandersongraves.podomatic.com/   

 --Anderson T. Graves II   is a writer, community organizer and consultant for education, ministry, and rural leadership development.

Rev. Anderson T. Graves II is pastor of Bailey Tabernacle CME Church in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. He writes the popular blog: A Word to the Wise at www.andersontgraves.blogspot.com

Follow me on twitter @AndersonTGraves 

Click here to support this ministry with a donation.  Or go to andersontgraves.blogspot.com and click on the DONATE button on the right-hand sidebar. 
Visit the ministry’s website at baileytabernaclecme.org

Support by check or money order may be mailed to 
Bailey Tabernacle CME Church
1117 23rd Avenue
Tuscaloosa, Alabama 35401

#Awordtothewise, Jesus, God, spirit, ghost, holy #baileytabernacle,  #BTCME, Pentecost, recipe, amazing, acts, peter, grain, wheat, grind, #grinding, winnow, fire, water,  #feastofweeks, education,

Tuesday, June 4, 2019

TRYING TO SIN YOUR WAY INTO HEAVEN (audio)

From Romans chapter 2, this is the 3rd sermon in our series from the book of Romans.  The message is about: TRYING TO SIN YOUR WAY INTO HEAVEN.


Listen well.

If you can’t get the audio on your device, visit the main podcast page at http://revandersongraves.podomatic.com/   

 --Anderson T. Graves II   is a writer, community organizer and consultant for education, ministry, and rural leadership development.

Rev. Anderson T. Graves II is pastor of Bailey Tabernacle CME Church in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. He writes the popular blog: A Word to the Wise at www.andersontgraves.blogspot.com

Follow me on twitter @AndersonTGraves 

Click here to support this ministry with a donation.  Or go to andersontgraves.blogspot.com and click on the DONATE button on the right-hand sidebar. 
Visit the ministry’s website at baileytabernaclecme.org

Support by check or money order may be mailed to 
Bailey Tabernacle CME Church
1117 23rd Avenue
Tuscaloosa, Alabama 35401