#2 — GOOD NEIGHBORS, BOATS, AND HELICOPTERS, OH MY!

#2 — GOOD NEIGHBORS, BOATS, AND HELICOPTERS, OH MY!
“He reached down from heaven and rescued me; He drew me out of deep waters.” (2Samuel 22:17 NLT) OK, maybe it wasn’t “deep waters” like it said in that Scripture, but when it’s running through your house it seems like a tidal wave.

Here was our situation. Margie and I were babysitting (Because Harvey wasn’t going to do anything, remember?) little Adalie, who was about to turn three. As the storm progressed it became obvious that we “might” encounter some water. I was still believing that everything was going to be alright. I reminded Margie of the time when the disciples were freaking out in the middle of a storm, while Jesus was sleeping in the boat. I asked her, “Are you going to be like the disciples or like, Jesus?” I don’t remember all of the things she said, but I do remember her saying, “I TOLD YOU I DID NOT HAVE A GOOD FEELING ABOUT THIS… WE SHOULD HAVE LEFT A LONG TIME AGO!” I muttered under my breath, “God, why does she ALWAYS get to be right?”

By now, it’s probably 4 a.m. Sunday morning, and I wheel over to my front door to check for water. And there it was. I asked Margie to get some towels… and within the next 15 minutes our entire house was flooded and rising. Several of my neighbors appeared out of nowhere and they carried me, my wheelchair, and Adalie upstairs. Courtney and Jayce, with their baby, Judah, were stranded at Josh and Lauren’s house. His house didn’t flood but the water was so high that nobody could get in or out. AT THAT MOMENT, I felt 100% helpless. I’ve never had such an overwhelming, paralyzing, and vulnerable feeling. Here I was, upstairs, in a wheelchair, with my granddaughter Adalie. Margie is trying to move a few things upstairs, and in my eyes, there’s nobody that can help us. Maybe some of you know exactly what I’m talking about. BUT, remember the verse in 2 Samuel. It says, “HE drew me out of deep waters.” Who did it? God did it. I should have remembered that God always has a plan… whether we see it or not.

By mid-morning Courtney had put us on the 911 list to be rescued, my two sons were calling their friends with boats and big trucks, and we had at least 12 men standing in the water that was flowing in our foyer. One of the guys, Dustin Drew, found out that you couldn’t drive to my house because of the high water. So, he pulled over and walked almost a mile through high water while pushing a small boat. (Which was perfect for Adalie) Another guy that lives maybe 5 houses down “just happened” to work for Coast Guard. He was talking to the HELICOPTER hovering over my house. What??? I turned it down though, too many memories with a backhoe, right? Then a flatbed boat showed up at my front door. My neighbor, Lawrence, took charge and the men loaded me, with all my breathing equipment into the boat. Adalie loved the “adventure” in her boat and Margie walked behind my boat. (A story in itself.) So, here’s this crowd of friends, paramedics, Coast Guard, neighbors from near and far… and EVERY ONE OF THEM WERE FOCUSED ON OUR SAFETY AND OUR LIVES. It was an epic moment as people worked from their HEART, instead of working from their POCKET.

Oh, remember that overwhelming, paralyzing, and vulnerable feeling I had? It is long gone! God ALWAYS has a plan and HE will never leave us! Never!

In Him, Pastor Kevin Kinchen

Tongue-Tied

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When the doctors diagnosed ALS in 2008, one of the last tests they did was, “Kevin, stick your tongue out while looking in the mirror, please.” So, I did… I was shocked! My tongue was moving around like it was stuffed with live worms. “What is that???” It was the muscles in my tongue, firing without my permission. I couldn’t feel it moving, but I also couldn’t control it. That means it was working those muscles 24/7, which has drastically impeded my speech… and there is nothing “I” can do to stop it. Needless to say, I now see the tongue in a different way. And….. so does God.

In James, Chapter 3, it says, “A careless or wrongly placed WORD out of your mouth can do that (start a raging fire with one spark). By our speech we can ruin the world, turn harmony to chaos, throw mud on a reputation, send the whole world up in smoke and go up in smoke with it, smoke right from the pit of hell.” Then it says, “You can tame a tiger, but you can’t tame a tongue — it’s never been done. The tongue runs wild, a wanton killer. With our tongues we bless God our Father; with the same tongues we curse the very men and women “He made in His image.”

Listen, every one of us have hurt others with our words. Plus, we’ve hurt ourselves by the negative words we have spoken like, “I’m so stupid!” or, “We don’t ever have enough money!” It’s time for ALL of us to THINK before we unleash our tongues and SPEAK. We have to understand that we are “created in the image” (and likeness) of God. And how did God create the world and everything in it? He spoke it into being with His WORDS. We also create the world around us by the words we speak.

But, how can we tame our tongue when the Bible says, “you can’t tame a tongue — it’s never been done.” Remember when I said my tongue has, “drastically impeded my speech… and there is nothing “I” can do to stop it.” Well, that’s true, I can’t do it. But I “know” the One who CAN stop those muscles from mis-firing and even restore them. HE IS the only One who HAS tamed the tongue,.. JESUS. The only One who can tame the tongue, which will end up changing our vocabulary, is Jesus. When we surrender our life to Jesus, including the words we speak, He will lead us down a path that glorifies God and blesses us.

That’s serious “truth” we all need to think about.
Pastor Kevin Kinchen

How is your eyesight?

When is the last time you looked in the mirror and said, “Wow, look at that masterpiece!” I know, you think I’m kidding, but that’s how God sees us. In fact, He thinks so much about each one of us that… “Even before He made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in HIS EYES.” (Eph 1:4 NLT) Did you see that? “…. without fault in HIS EYES.” In order to see ourselves “without fault” we have to look through the eyes of God. He has the unique ability to see us for what we can become instead of what we were, or what we are now. A famous hockey player said, “I don’t skate to where the puck is, I skate to where puck is going.”

So, what about you? When you’re looking at yourself, whose eyes are you looking through? Other people, enemies, the devil? Just remember, the “Eyes of God” have forgotten your past, are aware of your today, and are seeing you in your God-given DESTINY.

“For we are God’s MASTERPIECE. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things He planned for us long ago.” (Eph 2:10 NLT)

In Him, Kevin Kinchen

First the natural then the spiritual.

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In 1 Thessalonians 5:23, the Bible says, “…. May He (God) keep your whole being-SPIRIT, SOUL, and BODY-blameless when our Lord Jesus Christ comes.” We are ALL a 3-part being; a spirit, a soul (mind, will, and emotions), and a physical body. Another verse says, “The spiritual does not come first, but the physical and THEN the spiritual.” In other words, the physical life comes first, then the spiritual. — (1Cor. 15:46) Stick with me now, I’m going somewhere with this.

On Friday, the day of Donald Trump’s Inauguration, my Pastor sent me this text late that night. — Kevin, this is, “first the natural then the spiritual” that’s happening tonight with Trump. As it is in the natural, it’s going to be in the spiritual next. And it’s going to be greater than anything we’ve ever seen; it’s not later… it’s NOW.

Saturday morning (before I knew about the text) Margie and I were at a friends house and someone said, “Trump might be smart but there’s no way he could become president on his own. It was GOD that put him there!” The minute they said that, it hit me like a BRICK…. GOD DID THIS! That’s why nobody can figure out how he won! God chose someone UNqualified as a politician, and “foolish” in the eyes of others, to shake-up our nation. The Bible says, “It’s written, I’ll turn conventional wisdom on its head, I’ll expose so-called experts as crackpots.” (1Cor. 1:19)

When we got home I finally saw the text and I had an overflow of Scriptures and Biblical examples running through me. Remember, in 1 Corinthians it says, “first the natural then the spiritual.” If President Trump is the natural side of this, then I can’t wait until the spiritual happens. Why? Because Donald Trump broke the mold, and broke political records, when it comes to the typical profile of a president. Plus, he came into this with a strategy of reaching individuals, the people… not just a party or a position. That means the “spiritual side” would shake-up and interrupt our nation as God uses the UNqualified, because He will qualify them. He would raise up those who have been tagged “foolish” by others. They may not fit the profile of the religious, they may not have a seminary degree, and they won’t be seeking a title or a position, they just love God and love people. Their faith will be supernatural, their BOLDness, courage, and commitment to the Kingdom of God will be contagious. As they spread throughout our nation we will SEE and PARTICIPATE in the greatest display of God’s Glory, as He works through the Body of Christ in signs, wonders, and miracles.

I don’t know about you, but I want to see, and be, in a spiritual move of God. I want to shake-up and interrupt (in a good way) the lost, the hurting, and the sick, with signs, wonders and miracles! I urge you to make 2017 the year you get serious about knowing God personally. Dive into your Bible. Commit to praying for others. And most of all, LISTEN, listen to the One who knows everything and follow His lead.

Thanks for reading this!
In Him, Pastor Kevin Kinchen

This is only a test – Part 1

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“Until the time came to fulfill his dreams, the Lord tested Joseph’s character.” (Psalm 105:19 NLT)

Do you have a dream from God that hasn’t happened yet? Or, do you have a Promise from the Lord that seems impossible? You know, the kind of Promise that gets further away every time you turn around. Listen, rest assured, God fulfills the dreams and the Promises that He makes. “SO WHY HASN’T MY DREAM AND MY PROMISE HAPPENED YET?” Well, that’s a complicated question… but what I do know is, it’s NOT God’s fault. And the “devil” does his share to discourage us, but he’s not always the one to blame either. Sooooo, that leaves only one,,, US, as in YOU and ME. “What? How could I be the one hindering my own dream?!?”

Well, first take another look at Psalm 105:19 — “Until the TIME came to fulfill his (Joseph) dreams…” There is always TIME between the dream and the fulfillment of the dream. For Joseph, it was 22 years before he saw his dream completed. In today’s society, including Christians, it’s hard to find anyone with “patience.” I’m talking about the “22-year-hard-core-trusting-God” kind of patience. We live in a microwave generation and we want everything NOW! And “why” do we want everything now? It’s because we don’t seem to have enough time. I guess you could say, “We don’t have TIME for PATIENCE!” Unfortunately, God is not in a hurry. In fact, He often uses patience (and time) as He molds us to stand perfect and complete in ALL of His will for our life.

The Bible says there is a time for everything. God had a specific time to fulfill Joseph’s dream. Joseph probably had no clue it was going to take 22 years. Patience is defined as: “the capacity to accept or tolerate delay, trouble, or suffering without getting angry or upset.” Joseph could have given up on his dream from God. But instead, he chose to learn patience… without getting angry or upset. He wasn’t asking God to hurry up, he knew God had a plan for his life. Joseph learned to enjoy the journey as much as he enjoyed the destination. We should learn from Joseph. Slow down, practice patience, renew your focus, and trust the Lord to fulfill your dreams and promises.

In Him,
Pastor Kevin Kinchen