Monday, March 7, 2011


I have been watching with interest, the construction and preparation to replace the bridge over Interstate 20 at Well Road. I think they must be spending some of that economic stimulus money, (but what do I know!). I've been so interested because bridge building seems so complicated to me. I was surprised to see they had traffic flowing on the Interstate again by day 3! Amazingly smart people!

Bridge building can be a tedious endeavor--especially when that bridge is built to link different groups of people separated by age, gender, race, belief, style -- well, by more things that I can list here!

Enter the arena of worship. The natural tendency is for people to want things according to our personal preference -- you know -- the way they've always been done -- "yes, from my childhood!" "Don't change a thing, please!" And so there is work to be done -- building bridges to link the generations.

It has been a rewarding experience to lead CCWM through many and varied changes over the years and to see people so willingly lay aside personal preference for the common good. It screams "maturity!" when people who have been serving God for years and years are willing to adjust their expectations about the worship experience so their grand-children can relate to what happens in church and actually want to go! I for one, am not willing to watch succeeding generations walk away from the Church simply because I don't have enough foresight to build a bridge to reach them!

I'm not advocating change simply for change sake, and I am completely unwilling to change the message of the Gospel -- but our methods must always be tweaked and morphed to stay relevant to the culture. Jesus was a master at connecting with His culture. He spoke the language of the people -- and was always at ground zero with His audience. He often suffered rebuke and disdain from the established, status-quo, religious leaders of His day. "Friend of sinners" -- "wine bibber" -- even "Blasphemer" were the names hurled at Him because of His unconventional way of doing things. And even while some were offended at His methods -- He was building the Ultimate Bridge linking man to God and aren't you thankful for that!

So what action is mandated by Jesus' example? Bridge Building!

What say? Let construction begin!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Where Is Yours?

I've been thinking...and one of the things that has really stuck in my mind lately is how many things we try to substitute for God. It's really idol making -- while pledging allegiance to Jesus, we look for all kinds of things that will somehow prop up our faith and placate our flesh. We sometimes turn to feelings, experiences or manifestations that ever so subtly supplant simple faith and trust in God.

Have you thought lately about the level of your faith in Christ? Is is a faith that must be backed up and held in place by some tangible evidence that God is really real? If so, then trust has been replaced by a kind of pseudo faith -- the kind of faith that requires evidence -- which is, frankly, no faith at all.

Abraham, the father of all who believe (Ro. 4) chose to believe God in spite of a lack of evidence. He didn't see any signs or feel any goose bumps while he and his only son, Isaac, made the death march up Mt. Moriah. He made the climb on the strength of faith alone -- believing that even though he couldn't see any way out of his dilemma, God was faithful who promised to make a great nation from his seed. So he trudged ahead.

I'm thinking Isaiah knew something about walking, too. I love the powerful words he penned in Isaiah 40:31, "They will soar on wings like eagles, they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint." The truth is simple...every Christ follower knows there is a lot less soaring on eagles wings and a lot more walking without fainting than we care to admit. Why is that true? Because the life for Christ is a life of faith -- where you don't always get to see it before you're asked to believe it. It's a life that requires us to take up our cross and pull up our stakes long before we ever get a road map to where we're headed!

I love to see the power of God on display -- I desire signs, wonders and miracles, but my faith? I choose to anchor it In Christ Alone! I hope you do too.

Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy. 1 Peter 1:8 (NIV)

Keep believing -- in Jesus, that is!

Tom Lowe

Sunday, January 30, 2011


Norman Vincent Peale relates this story in his book, Power of the Plus Factor.

Once walking through the twisted little streets of Kowloon in Hong Kong, I came upon a tattoo studio. In the window were displayed samples of the tattoos available. On the chest or the arms you could have tattooed an anchor or a flag - a mermaid or whatever. But what struck me with force were the words that could be tattooed on someone's flesh, "Born to lose."

I entered the shop in astonishment and, pointing to those words, asked the Chinese tattoo artist, "'Does anyone really have that terrible phrase, "Born to lose", tattooed on their body?'" He replied, "Yes, sometimes." But I said, "I just can't believe that anyone in their right mind would do that." The Chinese man simply tapped his forehead and in broken English said, "Before tattoo on body, tattoo on mind."

I thank God for the opportunity to work daily with the people of God, but tragically, and yes, even at CCWM, there are people who have a deflated view of who they are called to become in Christ! Do you realize who you are in Him? Do you see yourself through His eyes - sons and daughters - Kings and Priests before God - the very one for whom Jesus Christ bled and died? Can you comprehend the bodacious, over-the-top love God has for you? Do you realize your eternal significance?

You are of great value in the Kingdom of God. Like a Jeremiah - you were fashioned and shaped for an eternal purpose in the plan of God (Jeremiah 29:11).

God changed Abram's name to Abraham years before he sired a son. He was about 75 years old - Sarah was barren and past the age of bearing children. But in faith, Abram embraced the name Abraham (father of multitudes). He accepted a reality about himself that he couldn't yet see - really, he believed the impossible was possible through God.

What has God called you? What are you saying about yourself today? Embrace what God is saying! You were not "Born to lose!" You were BORN TO WIN! Accept the name!

Go for it!

Monday, June 7, 2010


Recently our Pre-K grandson, Gibson, came in from kindergarten and said "I tried to get a girlfriend today." "You did? Well, what happened?" I replied. He said "She didn't hear me, but I'm gonna say it louder tomorrow!" I got a huge belly laugh out of that one. He's a bit timid and I can just about see him saying -- kind of under his breath -- "You wanna be my girlfriend?"

It's frustrating when we try to communicate with people who either don't hear us, aren't listening or simply aren't interested in what we have to say. One out-o-tune husband said, "My wife says I never listen to her -- at least I THINK that's what she said!" That's only funny as a joke.

Ever thought about how God might feel when He is trying to talk to us? In a hundred different ways He's speaking to us, but so often we're simply not listening. Without even being conscious of it, we blow God off. We hear ever other insignificant voice while we let the voice of The Preeminent One go unheard, unnoticed and without any response from our end.

It's a real bummer when you're trying to join a conversation but can't get a word in edge wise. You've been there haven't you -- only the ones who shout the loudest ever get the floor. God rarely shouts, if ever. Do you want to hear His voice? Silence all the other loud mouths. Get quiet--still and alone with Him. I promise He'll say something worth hearing.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

We've Got Friends Comin' Over!

It's getting exciting! June 3, 4 and 5 are the dates for the Destiny Ministries "This Is My Destiny 2010" Conference to be held here at Christ Church West Monroe. It's gonna be a great time spiritually, relationally -- in every way. Billy Hornsby of the ARC (Association of Related Churches) will be speaking to us. Scott Jones, Moderator of Global Christian Ministries will be here -- John Ragsdale leading worship -- can't wait to celebrate with my friends all that God is doing in the earth! Trina and I, along with our church family consider it a huge honor to be able to host this event for 2010. We're making preparations to welcome great friends to West Monroe and to "This Is My Destiny 2010." Hope you'll be here for a wonderful time of refreshing and reconnecting with friends -- old and new. Come on over. We've got room for you!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Take That, Devil!!

Unity! It's the stuff that brings the blessing of God upon our families, our churches and our communities. I for one, consider it a real privilege to live in an area where such a high level of unity exists among Christian leaders -- unity that crosses denominational lines, political ideologies and cultural boundaries. Each month people from virtually every sector of society gather for early prayer -- regardless of race, age, doctrinal differences -- men and women gather to celebrate the power that is in the Cross of Jesus Christ and to cry out to God for the spiritual, social and economic renewal in the Northeast Louisiana sector of our state. How pleasing to the heart of the Father, "...for there the Lord commanded the blessing of eternal life" (Ps.133:3). I love the unity as we all walk together -- to sense the camaraderie among us.

Over and over the scriptures highlight the human body as evidence that the spiritual body of Christ must work together in synergy if in fact, we are to become all that Christ designed us to be (See 1 Cor. 12:12). The combined efforts of the few will always outpace the lone efforts of the isolated. There is power in unity! I love this quote; Cooperation is the thorough conviction that nobody can get there unless everybody gets there. ~ Virginia Burden The Process of Intuition.

Last evening more than 82 churches from the Monroe/West Monroe/Ouachita Parish region were represented by their pastors and congregants as they gathered in the Monroe Civic Arena for one purpose -- to glorify God! Heaven rejoiced -- hell trembled! All I can say this morning is "Devil got a shiner!!"

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Ever So Close

"The word is near you, in your mouth, and in your heart -- that is, the word of faith which we preach" Romans 10:9.

In the 1800's a prospector went to California in search of his fortune. He spent his entire life scouring the mountains for gold, only to die as a pauper. When they were digging the grave behind his house to bury him ... do I really need to finish this story?

It's kind of a sad story, isn't it? To think that our lives could literally be wasted in search of some illusive something--that one thing we dream would make us happy. We tell ourselves . . . "I must be near it now -- surely I'll find it soon, I know I'm close." So goes life by the shovel full.

Dare we squander all the precious moments God has sprinkled into our lives while we frantically search for an even better moment? Have we become ungrateful for all the present good, because we are still searching for the proverbial pot of gold at the end of the rainbow? And have we so concentrated our hearts on the "Big Find" that we find no reason to be thankful for food, shelter and clothing?

Sometimes the "gold" we're searching for is located in our own backyard. We need only to open our eyes to see. Rather than fret over the relationships we don't have, why not strengthen and concentrate on the relationships we do have. Instead of living a discontented life, why not learn contentment. We don't need to search the world over to find happiness. Stick a spade in the dirt. You're probably rich and don't even know it!