This Week’s Thought

By Brad Campbell –

Just a thought to help start your week.

“It’s beginning to look a lot like…” what?  These days, it’s hard to know if it’s fall, halloween, almost Christmas, hurricane & tornado season, or still summer time playing tricks on us.

The view in this picture is a look down my parents’ driveway.  When I look at this, I see the changing colors of autumn.  I see falling leaves and bare tree limbs.  I see the dirt and the sun shining through the trees.  But I see and hear a lot more than what the picture shows.

I see a loving home.  I see parents who have lovingly supported their children and grandchildren in all their many endeavors through the years.  I hear lots of loud voices full of laughter, excitement, and sometimes music.  I see my mother, who now reminds me very much of my Grandmother, in her kitchen stirring up any number of things.  I hear my father, pastor of fifty-plus years, asking many questions in genuine concern for the welfare of his grandchildren, the youngest of whom are in high school.

I could go on and on, but suffice it to say that there’s more than meets the eye for me when I look at this picture.  For those of us blessed enough to still have our parents or other parental relatives in our lives, I pray you are cherishing every moment.  Yesterday I looked down my driveway at my own house as each of my now-grown kids drove off and back to their respective homes after a cherished weekend with us.  A simple little picture of a simple driveway, but there’s so much more to be seen.

From the words of the Scripture, “Honor your father and mother that your days may be long upon this earth.”  Honor and respect.  That’s what our world needs more of.  And in sharing those two things, we share the love of our Heavenly Father.

As you glance down the driveway of this week, may you see and hear all the beauty that comes from being in the family of God!

Just a thought.

This Week’s Thought

By Brad Campbell –

Just a thought to help start your week.

If you’ve ever visited Washington, D.C., you may recognize this as a photo of the National Cathedral.  This magnificent place of beauty is built on one of the hills surrounding downtown D.C. itself.  It stands regal, majestic, and in a place of prominence.  It’s lawns are meticulously manicured.  It’s aisles and pews are polished with a mirror-like shine.  And even the slightest of whispers echoes through the mighty chambers.  There’s nothing like it.  And yet, it’s still just a church.

I didn’t grow up in a huge church like that, but it was large nevertheless.  The church I pastor now is small by comparison to those.  And yet, God the Father inhabits the children of God inside the smallest church house just like those inside the largest.

You don’t have to attend a magnificent cathedral in order to be close to God.  And, yes, for those who would wish to take it to the extreme, you don’t have to attend any church in order to be close to God.  However, it is true that those who are close to God truly want to attend church and worship with other believers.  This year of the 2020 quarantine has left many of us longing for more ‘normal’ days to spend inside the church house with other believers!

Wherever you choose to worship, whatever Bible-believing church you choose to attend, of whatever congregation you choose to be a part, just choose.  Choose.  We have the blessing and privilege of choosing where we wish to worship!  Take advantage of that wonderful opportunity and get inside God’s house as soon as you can!  

There’s nothing like it.

This Week’s Thought

By Brad Campbell –

Just a thought to help start your week.

Here in the deep south, temperatures are beginning to drop below 80 degrees, and that’s always awesome!  The leaves are beginning to change colors.  And for many of us, we begin the season of watching the sides of the road for deer about to jump out in front of us!  I was pulling out of my driveway one day a week or so ago when I glanced in my rear view mirror only to see a deer casually walking across right behind me.  At least she had waited for me to cross first!

These two deer were enjoying the acorns in the back yard while occasionally glancing up to see if I was still watching and snapping pictures.  They were content in their activity but still very alert to their surroundings.

I wonder how much time is wasted each week because we are so focused on what we find ourselves busy doing that we forget to glance up every once in a while and see the world around us!  God’s creation is too beautiful to be missed.  And God’s creation includes not only the birds, trees, and deer, but also the other lonely hearts and busy individuals who are walking and working among us every day.

Do yourself a favor this week.  Look up from all the nuts and see the people around you.  They may just need another living soul to help them appreciate the beauty of the moment.  The Psalmist said it best when he said (paraphrasing) that he longed for the love of God as much as the deer longed for the cool water of the stream.  Don’t miss the goodness of God all around you.  Look up!

Just a thought.

Advancing Christian Fellowship

2020 has presented a number of unique challenges affecting Christians across our nation. COVID-19 completely disrupted church attendance, traditional church programming, and Bible Fellowship / small groups. In addition, the riots in major cities and protests across the nation over perceived racial injustice has largely fractured a mending and growing interracial church brotherhood that transcended historical racial lines. Couple these with growing uncertainty over the lines of truth and the shifting morality of our society, and it is no wonder that individuals are statistically more worried and more stressed than ever before.

We have heard many Christians say that 2020 is a lost year. Some have gone as far as to say that 2020 is a year that Satan owns, and that His work to separate and divide Christians has caused irreparable harm to the church.

It is our belief that Satan is not strong enough to separate God’s people no matter how hard he tries. He does not own one single day, and we believe it is our time to fight back against the evil’s of this world with new tools and with a new fellowship.

The American Christian Association is looking to begin a new chapter with growth of local fellowship groups and a more organized presence in our communities. These fellowship groups would be very similar to local civic groups such as Rotary, Lions Club, and many others. However, one key difference is that it would be exclusively for Christian brothers and sisters looking to take their faith in the Lord and fellowship with others to the next level.

This group would in no way substitute for the local church. Rather, it would supplement and support the local churches and allow Christians from all Bible-believing denominations to unite under the umbrella of truth and love. This group would share stories, educate members, empower fellow believers, and prayerfully grow as a body ready to defend the church and one another against the many evils of this world.

Be looking for more details about this exciting new development from the American Christian Association. We will be looking for brothers and sisters from around the nation to step forward in leading local groups. Together, we will build a more unified organization of Christians in our nation.

If you are interested in learning more or helping to start a local group, please contact us at communications@myamericanchristian.org.

This Week’s Thought

By Brad Campbell –

Just a thought to help start your week.

I took this photo just a couple of years ago in Helen, Georgia.  The quaint little town of Helen was once a mill town, situated right on the Chattahoochee River.  Some of the town leaders got together with some suggestions to increase interest in their town and from that meeting was borne the idea of building and rebuilding some of their town to resemble a mountain village one of the men had visited.

Helen, GA, then grew to be like an Alpine village in Bavaria, as you can see from the picture.  German festivals are held.  German restaurants offer wonderful foods.  Little shops line the main street through town, inviting visitors to experience some place different.

Well, the town of Helen, although a very neat place to visit, is not really an Alpine Village.  It is just built to look like one.  

Have you ever thought about what you are built to look like?  As a Christian, we, having all been made in the image of God, and now calling ourselves by His name, have been created to be like Christ in this world.

I may never visit a true Bavarian town, but I’ve enjoyed visiting Helen, GA.  I’ve seen what Bavaria is like.  As folks see and visit with you this week, will they see what God is like?

Just a thought.

This Week’s Thought

By Brad Campbell –

Just a thought to help start your week.

If I asked you to name your favorite flower, many of you would respond with “rose”.  I’ve always loved roses, and although I don’t have many, I do enjoy the rose bushes we have around our house.  You are looking at one of them here.  

It’s hard to explain why it’s my favorite flower.  “Nanny,” my Dad’s mother, cherished her many rose bushes that ran along the side yard between her house and the woods.  My father-in-law, the bear-sized manly-man, had the red roses as his favorite, and we continue to place some on his grave from time to time.  My wife and I spent some time on our honeymoon lots of years ago walking through the hundreds of rose bushes in Mobile, Alabama’s Bellingrath Gardens.  There’s just something about the rose.

New Testament Scripture never actually refers to Jesus as the Rose of Sharon, although man has used that terminology.  The rose is thought of as the most “perfect” of all flowers.  That certainly is an accurate description of Jesus.  And the rose itself represents God at work in whatever situation the roses appear.

I like that.  I see roses blooming in my yard, and I see God at work.  And I surely know it’s a play on words and not the same definition, but Jesus ‘rose’ on the third day as well!  There is definitely something special about the rose!

My very simple prayer for you this week is that you will see rose.  Yes, fall is almost upon us and there aren’t too many blooms left in the yard, so look for the rose in the lives of those around you.  And, see God at work in your situation.  Stop and smell the roses.

Just a thought.

This Week’s Thought

By Brad Campbell –

Just a thought to help start your week.

I was wandering around in a large cemetery the other day.  I know that sounds strange to a lot of you, but I find it quite relaxing and very interesting at times.  This particular morning, the sun was shining, and although it was very warm, there was a nice breeze blowing too.

I had a lot on my mind.  Nothing terribly wrong, but lots of things going on and several people and their needs on my mind as well.  I won’t say I was praying right then, but the Lord and I were nevertheless enjoying our time alone.

While I pondered all those scrambled thoughts in my mind, I turned around to notice a very tall statue of Jesus behind me.  I had seen it already, of course, as I walked around.  But now it was right there.  I turned, realizing how close I was to it, and looked up to see His face with the sun shining over the Son’s shoulder, and I jerked my phone out of my pocket to get this picture.

I can’t speak for your week, although I try to.  (Hence the reason for these “thoughts”.)  I can only speak for me when I say that this was exactly what I needed to see that morning.  Because regardless of all that may be going on in our lives, regardless of the issues the coronavirus may have caused, regardless of family situations and health issues, regardless of busy schedules with not enough time in the day, regardless of heart break and physical ailments, the Lord our Savior is ALWAYS looking down upon His children.

He sees, He knows, and He hears the cries of our hearts even we utter not a word.  The Son is always shining down on you.  I pray you needed that reminder this week.

Just a thought.

This Week’s Thought

By Brad Campbell –

Just a thought to help start your week.

What you see here is known as the St. Andrew’s Church at Prairieville (near Gallion), AL.  This tiny little church building has seen many a faithful person come through her doors and worship from her pews.  She has heard many a beautiful voice sing praises to On High.  This church building, very familiar to folks who live in my area of the state, is on the National Register of Historic Places and has also been declared a National Historic Landmark.  Built with slave labor about 1853, St. Andrew’s Church offers a nice photo opportunity for the occasional passerby.  It is indeed a beautiful place to visit.  But is that all there is?

No disrespect to those who may occasionally gather there or in any other church these days, but if the only “claim to fame” of our church is its historical significance, are we doing our job as God’s people?  Is your church known in your community for making a difference in the lives of those who live there?  Is your congregation faithful to deliver the love of the Father in such a neighborly way that others want to come and be a part?

I once heard it said, in speaking of youth group gatherings, “Feed them pizza!  It doesn’t matter how you get them there.  Just get them there.”  While there is a lot of truth in that statement, getting them there is just part of it.  We need to keep them there.  We need to engage one another in worship and in service.

Many of our churches these days are still on a coronavirus-disrupted schedule of some sort and are longing for brighter days ahead.  As your church works in your community and neighborhood, are you doing your part?  A beautiful building is one thing.  Beautiful Godly worship, praise, and service coming from those who gather within its walls is even greater!  Be a part of something great this week.  Share the love of Jesus.

Just a thought.

This Week’s Thought

By Brad Campbell –

Just a thought to help start your week.

You’ve seen squirrels playing around in your yard or elsewhere.  I’ve shared pictures of more than one squirrel with you through the years, but here is another one today.  Take a close look at this picture, the squirrel, and his surroundings.  I wonder if we might take a lesson from him.

Maybe you’re frustrated because this year of 2020 hasn’t been quite what you signed up for.  Maybe you’ve had no great life threatening issues, but you feel isolated, discouraged, and worn out.  Many of us have had those moments or even days.

But look at our furry friend here.  The impending danger (me) approaching him doesn’t seem to bother him.  He’s aware, but he isn’t running away.  There are also thorns that have sprouted up in front and behind him, and yet he sits contented between them.  He would probably be more comfortable hiding in his safe nest somewhere high up in the trees, but here he sits on an old worn out fence rail snacking on an acorn.

The point is that the squirrel hasn’t let the problems surrounding him stop him from his normal routine.  Have you?  Too many times we allow our problems or self-imposed perceived difficulties keep us from carrying on with life.

The truth is that the squirrel really isn’t in any danger.  As a matter of fact, he is probably safer on that old fence rail between the thorns, surrounded by the things that keep the enemy at bay.  It’s all a matter of perspective.

Don’t let the thorns and other issues of this week keep you from your responsibilities for His Kingdom, and remember that those little thorns (perspective!) may be keeping you away from even greater danger from which the Lord has spared you.

Just a thought.

This Weeks Thought

By Brad Campbell –

Just a thought to help start your week.

Water.  It is vital for our human survival.  We can get it from our own kitchen faucet.  We can buy it bottled in bulk at the big box stores.  We can stop for a sip at the occasional water fountain.  However we get our water, we must have it.

This is not a picture of some ornate work of art or simply a statue I’ve run across.  What you see here is a public water fountain in Paris.  The French believe that good, clean, drinkable water should be freely accessible to everyone.  There are multiple little streams flowing from places on this fountain.  Each can be used to fill personal water bottles or containers at any time of the day or night.

The interesting thing is that no one in our group of 30-plus knew this was a water fountain until our tour guide told us we could stop for a drink, and then laughingly watched us wonder where.

The Lord God offers a living water to anyone who would stop for a drink.  It is readily accessible and available to anyone who seeks.  It is free and available at any time of the day or night.  All you have to do is stop and fill your cup.

After a long walk through the city streets and up the steep hills, we were thankful for the water break that day.  After the long walk up the hills of this life, I’m thankful for the quench of the water from the Holy Spirit each and every day!  Won’t you stop for a drink?  And better yet, share the water.  It is meant for everyone.

Just a thought.