Rest Beyond the River

“In the cross, in the cross

Be my glory ever,

Till my ransomed soul shall find

Rest beyond the river.”

“Near the Cross” by Fanny Crosby


This last Sunday we sang a hymn with the chorus printed above.  I was brought to tears by these simple and yet powerful words.  In recent weeks I have had to say goodbye to people who have helped shape my spiritual life.  I have been confronted with discouragement.  I have had to engage in tough, confrontational conversations with people inside and outside of the church.  I have seen my character attacked and my family attacked.  All of this has led me to doubt my effectiveness as the pastor of THBC and my call to ministry in general.  I kept asking myself, “Should I be dealing with all this hardship?”

It was in the midst of this period of doubt and self-loathing that these words pierced my heart and reminded me of what the Lord has told me.

Christ said, “These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)

Paul told Timothy, “But you, be sober in all things, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, fulfill your ministry.” (2 Timothy 4:5)

These words remind me of the truth of who I am.  I am an ambassador for Christ.  I am a traveler through this world.  This place is not my home.  I will endure hardship here.  I will suffer.  I pray that my suffering will be used to glorify God. 

But I should not seek my peace and my place here.  My soul was made for eternity.  I am destined to be with Christ in glory.  My ransomed soul will find “rest beyond the river”, so I don’t need to keep searching for it here.  If I do, and if you do, then we will be disappointed.


Our rest is when we will be with Christ.  If you have not received Christ in this life, then you will never be with Him in the next.  We want to share with you what that means, so join us this Sunday!


A Wonderful, Powerful Gift from God

In Creation, God made the Heavens and the Earth and all that is in them.  In Genesis 1:29 God tells mankind, “Behold, I have given you every plant yielding seed that is on the surface of all the earth, and every tree which has fruit yielding seed; it shall be food for you…”  God had given all the earth as a gift to man.  It was something they were supposed to treasure, maintain, and help to flourish, but before that God gave man an even more important gift. 

In Genesis 2, God explains the events by which God created man and placed him in creation.  During this time God notices something about man:  He is alone. (v. 18) For the very first time God is not satisfied with what He had created.  Man needed something, man needed someone.  God presents every creature that he had created before the man for him to name, but there is not one among them that can serve as a helper for man.

Therefore, God puts the man to sleep and from one of his ribs He makes a woman and gives her to the man.  The first gift that God would give humanity is the blessing of women.  God created man, but He could not say that he had created them in His image until there was woman there to compliment him and fill what was lacking (Genesis 1:27)

Even today God blesses this world and the church with wonderful, godly women.  As we take this weekend to celebrate our mothers, let us not forget to also celebrate our wives, grandmothers, aunts, sisters, daughters, nieces, and granddaughters who fill our hearts with such joy.  Like Creation, these women are to be treasured and encouraged.  For God himself said that they are “precious in the sight of God.” (1 Peter 3:4) They are a reminder that God loves us and He provides for us.  Praise be to God for such a wonderful gift!!!!


Notes from the Hill

Welcome to the new pastor blog for Tunnel Hill Baptist Church!
We will be using this feature in the weeks to come in order to share with the congregation and the world what God is laying on my heart.  My hope and prayer is that this blog will serve as a devotional for you and maybe give you some encouragement as you go through your week
For right now it is my hope and prayer that you are blessed and that God uses you this week for His Kingdom and His glory!!!