When I was a younger man I went to my Dad and begged him to let me play tackle football. Without much persuasion he agreed to let me play. A few weeks of practice went by and we received our football pads. It did not register in my young brain that my big brother was on the same team and this was a way that he could take out his aggression on his little brother. This was a Monday that I will never forget, not because my big brother took football practice as an opportunity to pulverize his little brother but because of what awaited me when I arrived at my home. I ran into the living room where my Mom and Dad were and with a woe is me attitude I blurted out, “I QUIT.” To my surprise my Dad jumped up out of his chair and walked out of the house and disappeared. With a grumpy attitude I stomped up the stairs to my room and took my football uniform off. As I was going back down the stairs to continue my “I QUIT” speech Dad was coming up the stairs with a book in his hand. Standing in the door my father motioned for me to return to my room. Dad sat me down and opened the book to a certain page and asked me to read the word he was pointing at. The word was “QUIT.” He then took the whole page of that dictionary and ripped it out. My dad made two statements to me that day that will forever be wretched in my mind, “QUIT is not in the Shipman Dictionary” and “I can is what makes a great man.” I have adopted these statements by my father and even changed one of them just a little, “God can is what makes a great man.” The value of what my father taught me that day has become a defining moment that has sketched my resolve to serve God with a divine purpose.

We cannot quit serving God nor can we stop believing in the Independent, Indigenous, New Testament Baptist Church that God gave his life for. The purpose of the church is not a burden for every Christian to bear. The burden of the church has already been bore at the cross, by Jesus Christ, on the hill of Golgatha and as the saved called out Assembly we have the great opportunity to carry out the purpose of the church with Holy Spirit given power. The message of the church is to spread the Gospel to every person, every village, every city, every state, every country, every culture, and every race. There can never be a time that the people of God would allow the purpose of the church to be thwarted by idol worship, indulgent sins, or spiritual mediocrity. In these times of society we fixate our eyes on the sin and degradation of our day with solutions such as programs that teach good habits, cults that personify Jesus Christ with no saving grace change, and even churches that have lost their perspective when it comes to the saving power of God’s church. For the sake of mankind we dare not create an attitude that there is no hope for this generation or the next.

Isaiah 14:24 says, “The LORD of hosts have sworn, saying, surely as I have thought, so shall it come to pass; and as I have purposed, so shall it stand.” The power of Satan is real and he has the ability to entice others to partake in his eternal fate in hell. The power of sin is also a reality and the only hope that we have is for all believers to continue having a church with a purpose. The purpose of the church will stand as a beacon for all people and will keep pouring the love of God out through the power of the Gospel. Even in those moments that the strength of Satan and sin seem to be dominating our culture and pursuing our children with unwavering vigor it is an honor to represent God’s church with purpose. May all believers stand with God and say “God can is what makes a great church.”

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