Living in the Wild

vbs logoI love Vacation Bible School! There’s an excitement and an energy around the church that simply cannot be duplicated any other time of the year. And I am so thankful for the countless hours of preparation that go into every facet of it. Leslie Whaley, you are a rock star leading rock stars, and I appreciate you and your team so much.

I’m loving this years VBS theme, In the Wild. That’s pretty descriptive of a typical VBS classroom, right?! But in his recent book Letters to the Church, Francis Chan talks about how it ought to be descriptive of the church as well. He talks about the animated movie Madagascar that came out a few years ago, about a group of animals at the Central Park Zoo. The animals have a cushy life, and most of the animals love it. As Francis describes it,

They’re extremely well cared for. Trainers wait on them hand and foot, bringing them everything they need and ensuring that their habitats, which are carefully designed to look like “the wild” are safe and comfortable for the animals.

But the zebra finds himself dreaming about the wild. He can’t shake the feeling that he wasn’t made to live in a zoo. He was made to roam free…


41tg9kr35pl._sx329_bo1204203200_Francis Chan wonders if that can describe people in the church as well. We can get very comfortable in our church habitat, especially when there are so many hardworking staff and volunteers who work to make sure our needs are met. But were we made for something more? Every once in a while we get a taste of it. Maybe on a mission trip, or when we reach out to a neighbor or coworker and share the gospel with them. There’s risk, unpredictability, danger, the thrill of the hunt—in short, everything we don’t get when we are safely behind the walls of your habitat.

Glynwood, let’s get back in the wild! Jesus envisioned a church that would not be held back by any cages, walls, or fences. Not even the gates of hell could prevail against the church Jesus envisioned (Matthew 16:18)! I challenge you to take a step toward what we were created for. Step out of your comfort zone, and begin a conversation with a lost friend. Volunteer in our Matthew 25 ministry. Get trained as a Disaster Relief Worker. Go on a mission trip. Walk across the street and welcome someone to the neighborhood.


It’ll be wild!


Joy in the Journey!


Revelation 7: The Seals, Part Two

It’s the end of the world as we know it. But we’ll be fine.

March 31, 2019, Glynwood Baptist Church, Prattville, AL

James Jackson, Lead Pastor

Click here for manuscript: Revelation 7 Manuscript

61liz79yq4l._sx345_bo1204203200_There have been two super helpful resources I’ve been using for this teaching series. The first is Revelation: Four Views–A Parallel Commentary by Steve Gregg. What I love about this one is that it takes each passage of Revelation and presents the four classic interpretations (historicist, preterist, futurist, spiritual) in parallel columns). A word of warning, though: as I learned last week, trying to present all four interpretations in a teaching time is overwhelming. This week, I tried to just cover the two I thought were most relevant for our discussion.

496826The second is the volume on Revelation in the Christ Centered Exposition series. I can’t say enough good things about this commentary. It is thorough, well-written, inexpensive, and practical. If you are using The Gospel Project or a similar curriculum that shows how all Scripture points to Jesus, you won’t find a better resource.

Philippians #3: Striving Together, On Our Own

Is our Christian life a team sport or an individual pursuit? Paul’s answer to the Philippians: yes.

March 17, 2019, Glynwood Baptist Church, Prattville, AL
James Jackson, Lead Pastor
Text: Philippians 1:27-2:13

Click Here for Manuscript: 3. Striving Together On Our Own Manuscript

The Throne Room: Revelation 4-5

One Throne. Two Chapters. God in Three Persons. One response: WORSHIP.

March 17, 2019, Glynwood Baptist Church, Prattville, AL

James Jackson, Lead Pastor

Text: Revelation 4-5

Click Here for Manuscript: Revelation 4-5 manuscript

We ended our time of study with a time of worship. While a video of Kari Jobe’s Revelation Song played, we read and prayed aloud the five songs of Revelation 4-5. Because of copyright restrictions, I didn’t put the song in the video. But you can watch the video here as you meditate on Revelation 4-5.  Blessings!