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Pastor Bill's OLD Blog

Communicating With You Makes My Day!!!
  • Maturing as a Christian

    I turned 47 last week.  I can't believe it.  It seems like just yesterday I was in my 20's with all kinds of goals for the future.  Amazing how fast time flies.  In my mind, I am still in my 20's. But in my body, I can tell I am in my 40's. 

    We all grow older.  That's a given.  The object is to not just to grow older but to grow up.  This process is called maturity.  As in life, so in our Christianity.  God requires growth in our relationship to Christ, His word and His will.  God wants us to mature.  2 Peter 3:18a says, "but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ."  God's plan for your life is that every day, you mature - you grow.

    Growth, healthy growth, brings fruit.  It may take a recently planted young apple tree a few years before it generates enough apples of the right quality to be used in a pie.  Growth and maturity take time.  But, if we don't grow and put processes in action to continue that growth, nothing will happen.  We may look like a healthy tree but, in actuality, we are not.

    Jesus passed by a fig tree one time that looked good but had no fruit on it.  He stopped and cursed the tree.  When He and the disciples came by later on, remarkably, the tree had withered and died.  God wants fruit from our lives and in order to do that, we must grow at a healthy rate. He demands growth so He can enjoy our fruit.

    The primary menu item in the diet of spiritual growth is reading the word of God. Sorry, but there is no way around this one.  You may think you'll do fine without it but I promise you won't.  God developed this diet plan.  It's not a church or pastoral recommendation.  It's a directive from God himself.  Take time - make time today to spend just 15 minutes or more in God's word.

    One of the darkest times in Christianity was due to a lack of the word of God and the pastors were making it up as they went along.  You are so blessed to have a copy of God's word at your fingertips.  Why not take time to soak in some juicy spiritual nutrition today.  You'll be surprised what instantaneous growth you'll see.

    PB

  • Passionate Christianity

    This Sunday I will begin a series called Passionate Christianity. It is born out of my experiences this past week while on my mission trip to Costa Rica. The people there are so passionate about everything - especially worship.

    Passion should be in every area of every Christians life as we serve our Savior. Lukewarm, mediocre worship, service or ministry is totally unacceptable. What should build our passion? Why be passionate? What does Godly Christian passion look like? Feel like? Act like? Sound like?

    Feel free to chime in and comment me on thoughts you have about passion. Let's do this together and see God work amazingly in our lives.

    PB

     

    ** While you're here, why not subscribe to this blog.  Over in the column on your right, there is an option to subscribe.  Thank You! 

  • Day 1 in Costa Rica

    Well, we made it just fine.  No problems at all and, for that, we thank God.  The drive was a little longer than we expected but we arrived at the hotel Monday night about 8 p.m.  The road is full of curves and it is up hill most of the way.

    Tuesday morning we had orientation and then left for ministry. One group began working to remove the old roof of the church while the other went door to door rounding up the kids for Bible School.

    The people at the church are tremendous.  They are so kind and very hard workers.  Two of the deacons of the church were there working when we arrived.  It took most of the day but 2/3 of the roof is off.

    There were about 35 kids for the first day of Bible School.  They loved the coloring pages Tabitha Riggle brought.  The kids are very artistic.and were well behaved.

    We arrived back at the hotel about 4:30 exhausted and sunburned.  It reached 90 degrees and we were all working out in the sun all day.  Thank the Lord no one suffered dehydration. Some went to the pool, some napped and some took a walk.  Don Young did our devotion and did a fantastic job.

    Make sure to check-out the pictures in the photo gallery.

  • BEWARE OF THE OPPOSITION

    If you search scripture - specifically the New Testament - there is a striking concept that is always prevalent.  It seems that whenever God does something really BIG, the adversary, Satan himself, is always there and tries his best to tear down what God has built. Since his encounter with Eve in the garden of Eden, the Devil is still today constantly trying to discredit God and reverse any progress made in His name.

    I have always kept Acts 6 in mind while performing the ministry God has given me to do.  The building of the church had only begun a few months earlier and Satan is attacking with everything he has. Peter and John are arrested in Acts 4. In Chapter 5, Ananias and Sapphira are encouraged to lie to the Holy Spirit by the Devil and many of the apostles are arrested and put in prison.  Then comes chapter 6.

    Opposition from outside forces seemed to make the people in the church stronger and the church grew.  So, Satan tried an alternative attack.  He bagan a campaign to disable the church from the inside.  In short, people began to complain.  I encourage you to read Acts 6  for yourself and see how this unfolds. Satan knew that if he could get the people in the church disgruntled and infighting, he could destroy it.

    God is once again moving in a strong way in our church.  He has set before us an open door. God sets the stage and prepares the way and motivates us to move forward for Him. He has so much He wants us to do and has miracles He plans to perform as we undertake His will. With that in mind, you can GUARANTEE the Devil will not be silent.  He is going to do everyhting he can to diminish God's momentum He is accomplishing through us.  WE CAN'T LET THE DEVIL WIN!

    I have seen his destruction of people and programs in my ministry and it angers me. I have seen souls lost and passion die due to his pernicious ways. I'm tired of it.  God's church must BEWARE. We cannot be so consumed with moving forward that we leave areas exposed and vulnerable. He has a knack for knowing how to get in - to hit us where we are weak and cause the most damage.  Please BEWARE and let's all of us stick together. Let's make sure we are not unduly influenced by Satan himself and the cause of irreprable harm.

    Satan was unsuccessful in Acts chapter 6 to get the people disgruntled.  Wise men filled with the Holy Spirit fixed the problem and got the people to stop complaining. Sadly enough, that's when he employed a sadistic approach. In Acts 7, Stephen became the first martyr. Satan took a human life in his attempt to destroy the work of Christ. I'm happy to say that didn't work either.  It actually brought the people closer together and caused the gospel to spread to the rest of the known world.

    Now, more than ever, we need to stick together and draw closer to God and each other.  Will you commit to ensuring Satan doesn't win another battle?  Let's watch our attitudes, our comments, our facial expressions, ourselves.  Don't allow Satan to use you to tear down what God is building here at Hillview. Let's stick together and make LOVE the word we live by and employ as we work to make Hillview the best church ever!

    Love you all!

    Pastor Bill

    P.S. If you haven't already, subscribe to my blog. Click the SUBSCRIBE link to the right.

  • Sunday Sermon Follow-Up #2

    A leader by definition is a person who others are following.  Seems very elementary but very true. People NEED to follow someone. Take peer pressure for instance. There is in each one of us a desire to look up to someone and mimic them or be mentored by them.

    Being a leader is a great responsibility. A leader must be mindful of his or her character. One of the reasons it is imperative to be a leader with character is because others trust you.  I heard today of a leader in a volunteer fire station association who spent all the funds that were donated to them.  What a shame.  The president of the association told me, "we trusted him.  Fireman have to have a great deal of trust from their fellow firefighters and, therefore, we trusted him - too much!"  Are you trustworthy?

    A leader has to set the example. When others fail, give up or quit, the leader works even harder to accomplish the goals of the team and rally the troops behind him. A leader who pays little attention to their responsibility or has a lackadaisical attitude will find their following getting fewer and fewer. 

    You are a leader! You were chosen because of your God-given abilities and calling to lead in your specific ministry in the church. Now - I just want you to do one thing.  Look behind you. Is anyone following? Are they trusting you - looking up to you and to you for guidance?  Don't let them down. Don't let God down. Lead like Jesus is standing beside you listening to every word and seeing every effort. Lead with love. People won't follow someone who doesn't want to develop a relationship with them and doesn't display appreciation.

    If there's one thing I want in my life as a leader is respect.  Whether it's in my family or here at Hillview, I desire respect from those in the church.  I understand from the Bible that respect is earned - not granted. Are those following you showing respect? Do they look up to you in admiration? Do they see themselves assuming your position one day as they see you better yourself and better serve Christ by reaching to another level?

    CHARACTER - EXAMPLE - TRUST - LOVE - RESPECT 

    Now those are words a leader can live by! I challenge you to read the Bible stories of some great leaders like Moses, Joshua, David, Peter, Paul, etc...

    Love you guys and pray for you always!  If I can do anything at all, let me know.

    PB

    P.S. Might I suggest the book "TOY BOX LEADERSHIP" by our own Ron Hunter and Michael Waddell?  You can pick it up at the Ambassador Bible Bookstore on the south end of Columbus or order it on-line at www.RandallHouse.com.

     

  • Sunday Sermon Follow-Up #1

    Most pastors would publish a list of ministries where volunteers are needed after preaching a sermon like I did Sunday.  As I described Sunday, the problem is not a lack of volunteers (though there are always needs in all of our ministries) but an issue of "WANT TO" or desire. The question to all of us is "what does God want me to do?"  What am I passionate about?  What causes the most fulfillment in my life?

    Our CLASS 301 is where we study and answer a questionnaire to determine where we fit in the best as far as ministry is concerned.  We all have God-given talents and abilities.  We just have to find out what they are so we can serve God joyfully.  We use the acronym S.H.A.P.E. when determining our gifts and abilities.  S stands for Spiritual Gift - what has God instilled in you that you do with ease for Him? H stands for Heart - what thrills your heart when you do it?  A stands for Ability - what abilities do you have?  P stands for Personality - is it kids, adults, technology, or something else that you seem to adapt to easily? E stands for Experience - what have you done in your life that you could do for Christ?

    Let me encourage you to make this a matter of prayer.  Maybe the ministry you're involved with is not for you and it's time for a change.  Maybe you now see the great need to serve Christ by "picking up the cross."  Whatever it is, pray and progressively move forward and watch how amazing God is.

     PB

     

  • Pre-Trip Planning Costa Rica - Home

    Hola...

    I made it back safe and sound.  It's going to be an awesome trip in January.

    If you'd like to go, contact me here or at Bill@HillviewChurch.com.  Dates are January 12 - 19 and the cost will be around $1,300.

    Go HERE to see the pictures from my trip.

    Remember, by FAITH, God can do anything!

    Bill

  • Pre-Trip Planning Costa Rica - Day 3

    There are so many missions and churches all across the world who need assistance.  I am so thankful for our International and Home Missions Ministries in the FWB denomination.  They are hard at work planting and growing works around the globe. My mission verse for the day comes from Mark 14: 7a "For you have the poor with you always, and whenever you wish you may do them good..." I know it may be a little out of context but the principle is the same.  There are churches in need everywhere of every type and sort.  I believe what we all must do (churches and Christians) is find a direction and go with it. At the same time, we must always support prayerfully and financially as best as we can - especially through our own sister organizations.  I believe God has dropped one of these needs in our lap and it's here in Costa Rica.

    We left at 8:30 a.m. to go travel the coastline.  Costa Rica means "Rich Coast" and the beauty is phenomenal.  We stopped by a small restaurant on our way that was high in the mountains. We sat overlooking the most beautiful vista (view) in the country.  It reminded me a lot of Hawaii the way the mountains were sloped and how steep they were.  A cup of coffee and we're on our way.

    It took about 40 minutes from the hotel to get to the ocean.  We stopped at Playa Dominical and walked out into the Pacific Ocean. The water was unusually warm for a northern boy.  We drove another 40 kilometers or so south and saw several beaches.  The rock formations and small islands that peppered the horizon reminded me once again that this is a "GOD THING" in so many ways.

    Before heading back, we ate lunch at another carefully positioned restaurant on a small peninsula.  Another scoop of Guyo Pinto and some chicken and French fries and we're on our way back. 

    Arriving back at the hotel around 1 p.m., I capitalized on the time to study.  The great honor of preaching to the church in Cajun was quickly approaching and I wanted to be studied up - especially since I would be using an interpreter.  I have only preached two other times with an interpreter and it can be rough sometimes.  The young lady who will be interpreting has never translated a sermon before so I need to be prepared.

    We have almost everything organized and planned for the January trip: lodging, food, equipment, and other activities.  The only thing left is transportation which Pastor Pablo is looking into.

    I get up early in the morning to drive the three hours to the San Jose airport.  I hope they have a seat for me.  Pray with me that they do. I will fill you in on the blog when I return and put pictures in the gallery.

    Look forward to filling you in on Sunday.

    Love to the best church in the world:  HILLVIEW!

    Honored to be your pastor,

    PB

  • Pre-Trip Planning Costa Rica - Day 2

    Pastor Pablo picked me up this morning around 9 am. We ate breakfast at the Bazooka Café which is an americanized restaurant.  I had ham, eggs, two small tortilos, AWESOME Costa Rican coffee and their infamous Guyo Pinto (which is beans and rice) which translates to "speckled bird." The reason - it looks like a speckled bird laying in your plate. It's white rice with beans scattered throughout.  

    We then traveled to his church in Cajon (pronounced ca-hone). It reminds me of a lot of the Dominican churches we visited but in a little better shape.  It's a good size but has no classrooms. I asked him what the churches greatest needs were so we could know what we might be able to accomplish when we go down in January.  There were two things he mentioned.  First, the roof.  It is in terrible disrepair and must be replaced.  It leaks badly (especially now during the rainy season) and it radiates a lot of heat from the sun.  They start church at 8 am on Sundays because it gets so hot here near the equator. The second is classrooms.  They have one small area where the tiny ones go on Sunday morning but they need classrooms added to the side of the building.

    The roof is the most important if they are to continue to grow.  We met with a gentleman in the church who is a very gifted contractor.  After determining the roof that is needed and the size, it appears that it will take about $10,000 to put a new one on.  A daunting task.  Should we try to go to our sister churches and friends to raise this money?  ALL OF US need to pray about this NOW.  January will be here before you know it.

    After the visit at the church, we stopped by his father's farm.  He raises coffee and I picked a few while I was there.  They use a lot of Nicaraguans who come over the border during harvest time to pick the beans. They are nice people.  It is similar to the Haitians who work for the Dominicans but not as impoverished.  I met his mom, four of his 7 sisters and one of his 6 brothers.  We ate a fruit off a tree in the front yard that was very sweet and delicious.  I can't spell it but the pronunciation sounded like ma-mu-ah. 

    We then picked up a young lady named Wendy who lived in New Jersey for six years and speaks fluent English so we could speak with the contractor.  While walking up the stairs, Wendy, the contractor and I were startled when a Parrot Snake appeared.  YES - it was poisonous but they said it was young and too small and not to worry.  Of course, Wendy and I had difficulty being as sold on the idea as they were.

    I'm back in the room and getting ready to go to dinner with Pablo and his fiancé.  We are going to Bazooka's again and I can't wait to enjoy another Costa Rican night at this little café.  I have not yet met the young lady he intends to marry so I am looking forward to it.

    Until tomorrow, continue to pray for me and the great need here in Costa Rica.

    PB

  • Pre-Trip Planning Costa Rica - Day 1

    I was so excited, I couldn’t sleep Sunday as the anticipation of going to Costa Rica was on my mind.  I didn’t hear the alarm clock go off and I was almost late for my plane. I was totally exhausted by the time that I arrived in San Jose, Costa Rica.

     

    There to meet me was Pastor Pablo and two of the men from the church: Carlos and Carlos.  One of them spent time as a nurse in New York and new english very well.  The other had a sweet spirit about him even though he couldn’t speak English.

     

    Pastor Pablo wore his suit and I felt so honored to meet this lone FWB ministering in this Central American country.  He is AWESOME!  He has such a great heart for Christ and so badly wants to see people saved.  He constantly talked about reaching the over 500,000 people in the Perez Zeledon area – San Isidro.  He has been here a little over a year and a half and already has over 135 people attending church.  He has a seminary (we would call it a Bible Institute) that has 10 that I’m sure will grow.

     

    Our 3 hour drive from San Jose to San Isidro was fascinating to say the least.  Cheri and I traveled the infamous “Road to Hana” in Hawaii with 100’s of curves and waterfalls.  It was beautiful but this trip was as well.  It drizzled rain all the way.  We were going up a mountain 75% of the time. The entire trip was from curve to curve and passing – we were constantly passing trucks and cars.  To most it would be extremely dangerous.  To me it was loads of fun!

     

    We all talked the whole three hour trip. Funny – it appears that many of the same issues Pastor Pablo deals with are the same as in the states.  The top 5: 1-lack of commitment; 2-people wanting the emotions of Christianity but not the meat of the word; 3-people jumping from one church to another; 4-apathy and little desire to see people saved; and, 5-false doctrine EVERYWHERE! It must be our generation and the generation coming up behind us. More on the church tomorrow.

     

    I went to bed early so have no pictures but I took one of the beautiful mountains outside my room.

     

    Love you guys and pray for me.

     

    PB

     

  • A Special Message from Pastor Bill - 091208

     
    Sunday is a make or break day. It's the day a friend of yours will walk into Hillview Church and hear the message of the gospel or not attend because they weren't asked. I promise you - IT'S NOT TOO LATE!

    Three people are to be baptized following the service on Sunday. One was invited by Cathy Donovan. Several months ago, she was diagnosed with cancer and came to Hillview and rededicated her life to Christ.  All because someone cared enough to ask.

    The other two were invited by a member of their family. Jerry Young, who accepted Christ a few months ago, encouraged his daughter and wife to come.  Both were saved all because someone loved them and cared for them enough to ask.

    The day is not over.  Maybe someone will walk passed your desk after you read this e-mail.  You've always figured that they would never go to church. You'll never know until you ask. Don't fear rejection from the people you ask.  I'd rather be rejected by a friend on earth than my greatest friend in Heaven.

    Let's fill up both services Sunday.  Take a moment and pray right now that God will open several doors of opportunity so you'll be able to see one of your friends walk in Hillview this Sunday.  Pray for the service and sermon but, most of all, that God's Holy Spirit will be stronger this Sunday than He ever has been.

    Love you guys!

    Pastor Bill

     

     

     

    Sunday

    Early Traditional Service -

    9:00 a.m.

    D6 Sunday School -

    10:10 a.m.

    Contemporary Service -

    11:00 a.m.

     

      Conference Revival

    begins Sunday and is taking place at the Westerville FWB Church

    Sunday - 6 p.m.

    Mon - Wed - 7 p.m.

    Jim Marcum is the featured speaker

     

    Please join our church family in providing food items to help feed the less fortunate in our community. The following is what we are scheduled to bring this Sunday:

    Jell-O Pudding and jelly

    For more information call the office @ 614-868-0451 or check out the website http://hillviewchurch.com

     
    Hillview Church
    9005 E Main St Reynoldsburg OH 43068 | http://hillviewchurch.com
     
  • Hurricane Gustav - 1

    It looks bad. Gustav is supposed to hit land about 8 a.m. tomorrow morning. I am currently investigating our options and ways Hillview can help if it comes to that. Please take the time tonight and tomorrow to pray for these thousands of people who are facing the loss of everything. I will keep you posted via the web-site. Love you guys! PB

  • Costa Rica Mission Trip

    Plans are being finalized for the first trip to the country of Costa Rica.  This will also be the second Hillview Mission Team trip facilitating other churches and individuals within our sister churches.  We will be working in the town of Perez Zeledon 4 hours south of the capital city of San Jose.  We will be working with the first and only FWB Church in the country of Costa Rica.  This is an AWESOME opportunity to help this church which has two satellite churches.

    The plan so far is to go the week of January 19th, 2009.  If you would like to join us, see Jennifer Brooks, Malari Helman or Cyndi Ibarra very soon so you can start preparing.  More information to come.

  • Setting The Stage For The Future

    A lot of things are in the works here in the Hillview community that will affect the future in a big way. The key is that these enhancements are all long-term and will help us fulfill God's will for us in His kingdom. It's an exciting time to be a part of Hillview. God has blessed us SO MUCH and I can see His hand at work in so many ways.

    The construction of the new stage is coming along and the roof should be on next week. Volunteers are needed to put plywood on the walls this Saturday. When the stage is completed, it will be a fully functional - state of the art - concept that will enhance our worship and enable more quality dramas and productions. This is a MUST as we reach out to our culturally diverse community and grow the Kingdom. Lighting, sound, video projection and production will improve dramatically and volunteers are needed to assist in this area. A new Audio/Visual space will be created to facilitate the growth. The foyer will be transformed into a more functional area. The room at the east entrance will be opened up to give us more room. The wall will be torn down and an attractive Welcome Center will be created to welcome our guests and provide an informational area. This is needed very badly. One of the main problems identified at our Vision Retreat last year was the flow of traffic through the foyer. It makes it difficult for guests to freely enter and have a place where information can be obtained. With this expansion, we should see a smoother flow through the foyer area and around the Pneuma Cafe.

    The leadership of Hillview has made some adjustments in our Wednesday night youth program. Kyle Topy has accepted the responsibility of the entire youth program including the teen group. We will be putting resources and people together that will help grow the youth both numerically and spiritually. Kyle has been working with the younger students and has done a magnificent job. He and Jessica are excited about this transition and will do an awesome job in this ministry. Several months ago, Kyle came to my office with a desire to expand his ministry for Christ and he's doing just that. Let's get behind him and Jessica and watch what God will do with people who are "sold out" for Him. If you would like to volunteer in our Wednesday night youth program, talk to Kyle or Jessica. They want to assist you in fulfilling your talents and gifts for God

    WE'RE GOING FORWARD. In my ministry, I have learned that, in the church, there are seasons of growth. With fall fast approaching and the kids getting back into school, things are calming down. Now is the time to invest in the church God has blessed you to be a part of. Here are two ways: 1) Start inviting people you know to come to Hillview and check us out. The world needs to see that church is not a stuffy-boring experience but can be an exciting-vibrant place. We need to see more and more people accept Christ and, for that to happen, they must be exposed to the gospel message. In the Bible, a man named Andrew spent one day with Christ. At the end of that day, he raced out and grabbed his brother to come and meet this man called Jesus. That man was Peter and we know how he impacted the world for Christ. Not caring for the lost around us nor inviting them to church to hear the message of the cross is disobedience. We all know someone we can get to come to church with us. Let's commit to Christ and do it. 2) Sacrificially give for growth. The bank has let us know that we can get another $10,000 if we need it on our signature. We don't want to do that and we don't need to. All of us coming together and giving sacrificially can make this happen. With the money we have, completing the stage should not be a problem. To provide the enhancements we really need, more funds will be necessary. The greatest investment we can make in our life time is to God's Kingdom. My wife and I decided not to accept a salary increase from the church this past year because we knew money would be needed for growth and our passion is for God's work here at Hillview. I ask that you pray and let God move in your heart and tell you what He wants you to do. Let's think "sacrificially" and watch what God does.

    One last thing. With the stage construction, it will enable us to get more people in the main auditorium. The goal is to fill up the building for both services by the end of the year. Will you do your part? For the last 2 Wednesday nights, we have been having special prayer meetings for our church. Sadly, very few have taken advantage of this opportunity. You can still be a part. Last night, we made a list of people we would like to see come to Hillview and be saved. There are more than 30 names on the list. If you would like to contribute the names of people you know, send them to me at Bill@HillviewChurch.com or comment this blog. We'll also send you the full list so we can all pray together for these people who so desperately need the Lord.

    Love you guys and looking forward to building Christ's Kingdom with you.

    Bill

  • Ready, Set GOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    After MONTHS of snags and "hold-ups", we now have received FINAL APPROVAL to begin construction of our new stage.

     PTL!

    This stage is needed so badly! For years we have had to set-up and tear down every weekend. We will still have to set-up and tear down the chairs but we will no longer have to "man handle" those heavy and awkward pieces of staging or construct the back-drop. We will not have to set-up the audio/visual equipment. This is so important. The A/V equipment is very expensive and the wear and tear on these sensitive items has been enormous. Our A/V team has done such a magnificent job in keeping the integrity of the quality of the sound and projection equipment. They have gone to great extremes to make sure the equipment was handled properly and always secure.

     KUDOS go to Don Young who is the Levite Team leader. He has been responsible for the set-up and tear down every weekend for several years. KUDOS also goes to Jeff Coffey who is the Audio/Visual Team leader. These men and their volunteers have done so much to make your Sunday worship experience comfortable and with a smooth transition. We, as a church, owe them so much. Now, we need to show our appreciation to them and our thanks to God by all committing to completing this stage as soon as possible.

    Both Don & Jeff have been behind the scenes serving but they have also been the primary supporters and encouragers of constructing the new stage. Another person who has been an invaluable proponent of this progress and growth is Keith Madden. Having been our Worship Team leader for over a year, he caught the vision of where we need to grow and go. Thanks, Keith, from all of your Amigos at Hillview.

    This Sunday, everyone will have the opportunity to begin serving and volunteering. I beg you to cut out TV, video games or whatever consumes your extraneous time and let's all join together to see this stage construction through to completion.

    Love you guys and PROUD to be the pastor of

    THE GREATEST CHURCH IN THE WORLD!

    Bill

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