Q&A with Ron Adams, Facilities/Outreach Pastor

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Ron Adams has been the Facilities/Outreach Pastor for Calvary Baptist Church since June 2006 and is a vital part of Calvary Baptist Church’s ministries.  Ron resides in Grand Prairie, TX with his wife, Crystil, and their two girls.

The Adams enjoy board games, going to movies and just being silly with one another, but their favorite thing to do together is visit Disney World. When Ron isn't serving as a husband, father, or pastor he enjoys camping, sporting events, game nights, and movies.

What does a Facilities/Outreach Pastor do exactly?

I work at keeping the Church campus looking as nice and clean as possible each week so people enjoy getting involved and serving within everything taking place at Calvary. Ultimately we want people to become a fixture within our church.

I also do the planning and running of events that will reach into our community and bring people to church. Outreach events allow the people to see our church family and get to know them on a more personal level - sharing life together and serving together. Some of our outreach activities include:
  • Judgment House
  • Softball for men and coed
  • Volleyball during the summer
  • Bowling during the off years of Judgment House
For softball, volleyball and bowling we welcome and want visitors to sign up and get involved with these activities. What better way to get to know the members of our church than to get involved in the activities that are established.

What is the #1 thing you love most about being Facilities/Outreach Pastor?

Creating an atmosphere that is conducive to learning more about our Savior Jesus Christ! Plus, being able to meet and interact with the people of Calvary on a daily basis.

What is the one question you are asked most?

"Why is it so hot/cold in the sanctuary?"

What many people may not know is we have done diligent study and research, and are teaming with an energy company, to help us set temperature based on the outside temperature and humidity. By doing this, we can minimize energy costs each month. Keeping in mind some people are hot natured and some are cold natured, I do try to find a middle ground to keep everyone as comfortable as possible.

What encourages you?

First and foremost my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Secondly my family! There are times I just don't know what I would do if I didn't have my family right there encouraging me along the way!

What is one thing you wish you could help people understand?

God is sovereign! There is nothing that happens in our lives that HE doesn't allow. We could be on the highest of high mountain tops or lowest of low valleys. Whatever is going on in our lives, God put it there for a reason.

I have found in my own life that some of the most valuable lessons I've learned have come while I was in deepest of valleys. I didn't understand at the time but when God brought me through it, I could see perfectly that it was for my good and I'm a better person today because of it!

Sovereign Over Us by Rica Salam

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Rica Salam has been attending Calvary Baptist Church since October 2013 and resides in Arlington, TX with her husband and kids.  Rica not only lends her vocal talents to the Calvary choir, but also volunteers in the Park area of Kid City as well as the Member Care ministry.  In her spare time, Rica enjoys playing video and board games with her family, gardening, home improvement projects, trying new recipes, and playing with her grandchildren.

Sovereign Over Us

My former pastor taught me to pray “Lord, help me to want only what you want!” I’d been praying this way for some time and it has brought me closer to God. Praying this way changed my life. My tendency to control everything and everyone was almost non-existent. I found relief in knowing that I didn’t have to have the answer to everything. Pastor Loveless teaches us to “seek His face!” This is so very powerful and necessary to get and remain in alignment with God.

About three years ago, I was diagnosed with cancer. Multiple Myeloma is a cancer where abnormal plasma cells accumulate in the bone marrow interfering with normal blood cells. The abnormal cells multiply so fast, they pile up onto the bones causing legions or tumors that thin the bones. My doctor told me my remission could be achieved quickly through chemotherapy. I didn’t ask God; I made the decision immediately! I want this gone now! There were other methods that were mentioned that would have taken up to 10-12 months before remission. Nope. Give me the fast stuff. I would sit for two hours twice a week with the IV drip hooked to my chest during my lunch break, then head back to work. I felt reasonably well, no nausea, no hair loss.

Just as the doctor said, I went into remission within six weeks, but the treatments left me with severe neuropathy. Sometimes in the middle of a conversation I would scream out in agonizing pain. I was taking 12 (7.5 mg) hydrocodone pills a day; two at a time. I was eating them like Skittles. I guess my pain was so severe, the medication didn’t have the normal narcotic-like effect on me. I was taking eight pills during my eight hour work day without any problem. No one knew I was even taking them.

I’d read everything I could get my hands on about Multiple Myeloma and neuropathy. I’d sit at the computer and cry, not cry, and cry again. They say Multiple Myeloma is incurable, but treatable. After three years I’m getting along much better. Now, I can wear some of the shoes I like, I can run and jump and play volleyball (somewhat). I look in the mirror now and see “me” again.

One day I was having chest pain while at work. I knew it probably was nothing, but to satisfy my co-workers, I let them take me to the ER. After hours of testing and waiting, the ER doctor came into the room where my husband and I were waiting. He said “Mrs. Salam, good news is there is nothing wrong with your heart. No signs of stress or scaring that we can find. The MRI technician said “but hey guys, come and look at her bones!!” WHAT’S WRONG WITH MY BONES?? WHAT?!! My oncologist never mentioned a problem with my bones, but the MRI Tech was fascinated with my bones for some reason.  He didn’t even know about the Multiple Myeloma.  I told my oncologist about the incident.  He suggested doing a bone scan, however, I opted not to do it.  I don’t want to know.  That’s God’s business.

As my husband and I walked to my car, we didn’t talk. I got into my car and watched as my husband walked to his car. Satan right then showed me how I would look having to get around using a walker, then in a wheelchair, then my funeral. I couldn’t fix this. I am a fixer! I just wanted to get home. I was alone; extreme anxiety overwhelmed me. My vision became blurry, my eyes were filling with tears.

I remember my right hand was in my purse searching for my phone. I knew I needed to put it on the charger. When I pulled it out, the screen was white and the text was black. It read “I AM THE LORD THY GOD. I WILL TAKE YOU BY YOUR RIGHT HAND AND SAY TO YOU, DO NOT FEAR, I WILL HELP YOU." (Isaiah 41:13).

Anxiety?? What anxiety?? It was as though none of this ever happened. I felt absolute calm, peace, love, and power. I KNEW HE WAS WITH ME! HE WAITED UNTIL I WAS ALONE BEFORE HE LET ME KNOW HE WAS THERE FOR ME! HE’D ALWAYS BEEN THERE! He always IS there… closer than the air we breathe.

I am speaking about the very same God who was with Noah, Moses, David, and Job. He said I am the Lord thy God. He started out by telling me who was He was! He told me not to be afraid, Satan is a liar! He didn’t say He would heal my body, He said I WILL HELP YOU! My God is sovereign!! All things work for His purpose.

God knows all things past, present, and future. There is no limit to His knowledge, for God knows everything completely before it even happens (Rom 11:33). “In all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose." (Rom 8:28). Because He is sovereign and He loves me, nothing will ever come into my life that He doesn’t declare or allow. No matter what we face, we can take comfort in the fact that God knows and is in control.

I never believed you had to attend a church to serve God. I’ve loved the Lord and have worshiped Him most of my life without going to church, but God led me to Calvary. I sincerely know I have a loving family here. People that care about me, and I them. Cancer is not my burden; it’s my gift. I wanted the instant solution, the quick fix, but some things cannot be disposed of so swiftly; they can only be accepted. And not accepted with resignation, but with gratitude!




Passion Week

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With Easter right around the corner, I want to highlight an article that summarizes the events of what we call The Passion Week. This week includes the final six days of Jesus' life before His resurrection, His resurrection, and the day after the resurrection. Included in the article are summaries of each day as well as corresponding Scripture passages. Understanding the resurrection in the immediate context of Jesus' final days enhances the power and magnitude of this amazing event!

In Christ,
Brandon H.


From Sunday to Sunday: A Summary of the Passion Week

David Huffstutler | March 7th, 2016 | (c) Copyright Religious Affections Ministries

The Passion Week refers to the final six days of Jesus’ life before His resurrection, His one full day in the tomb, and the day of resurrection. It is called the Passion Week because the word passion comes from the Greek word pasxō, which means “to suffer.”

Sunday: Day of Celebration

Matt 21:1–11, 14–17; Mark 11:1–11; Luke 19:29–44; John 12:12–19

Jesus began this day by going to Jerusalem and ended it by returning to the home of Mary, Martha, and Lazarus in Bethany. In between these times, the most notable event on this day was the triumphal entry into Jerusalem.

Monday: Day of Confrontation

Matt 21:18–19a, 12–13; Mark 11:12–18; Luke 19:45–48; John 12:20–50

Jesus went from Bethany to the temple in Jerusalem. At the day’s end, He either stayed on the Mount of Olives or returned all the way to Bethany. He cursed the fig tree, cleansed the time, and spoke of the Son of Man being lifted up in glory.

Tuesday: Day of Controversy

Matt 21:19b–25:46; Mark 11:19–13:37; Luke 20:1–Luke 21:36

Jesus again went to the temple in Jerusalem and assumedly returned to the Mount of Olives or Bethany at night. He repeatedly silenced the challenges by Israel’s leaders, rebuked them, told many parables, and taught on the end times on the Mount of Olives.

Wednesday: Day of Conspiracy

Matt 26:1–5, 14–16; Mark 14:1–2, 10–11; Luke 22:1–6

The chief priests and scribes plotted to kill Jesus. Later that day, Judas went to these leaders and promised to betray Jesus.

Thursday: Day of Consecration

Matt 26:17–35; Mark 14:12–31; Luke 22:7–38; John 13:1–17:26

Jesus and the twelve celebrated the Passover, the first Lord’s Supper. Jesus washed the disciples’ feet and gave His “farewell discourse.” He prayed for His disciples.

Friday: Day of Consummation

Matt 26:30–27:61; Mark 14:26–15:47; Luke 22:39–23:56; John 18:1–19:42

Jesus prayed in Gethsemane where He was arrested (approx. 12–3 A.M.). He was then on trial before the Jews and denied by Peter (approx. 3–6 A.M.). Just before 6 A.M., Jesus stood before the Sanhedrin. Judas committed suicide. Jesus was on trial before the Romans and was sentenced to crucifixion (approx. 6–9 A.M.). By this point, Jesus had been flogged twice. At 9:00 A.M., Jesus went to the cross and hung there until 3 P.M. He died, was taken down, and was buried.

Saturday: Day of Cessation

Matt 27:62–66

Jesus laid in the tomb for an entire day. Soldiers appointed by Jewish leaders guarded the tomb.

Sunday: Day of Conquest

Matt 28:1–15; Mark 16:1–7; Luke 24:2–35; John 20:1–17

Jesus arose! On this day, Jesus appeared four times.


About David Huffstutler

David pastors First Baptist Church in Rockford, IL. David holds a Ph. D. in Applied Theology from Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary. His concentration in Christian Leadership focuses his contributions to pastoral and practical theology.

Run Pt. 2 | Jonah: The Astonishing True Story

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I have a friend who came to America from Haiti many years ago. His name is Franco Wakhisi and he is an incredible runner. Which, makes sense since he is Haitian. About two years ago, my then girlfriend/ now wife, Jessica, came down to the Keys to visit me one summer, and it just so happened that the week she was there was the week the Keys Ultramarathon was taking place, and Franco was running in it. So we get this phone call and my dad says, “Hey, Franco is going to be passing by our house. A bunch of us are going out to cheer him on, you should come too!” So Jessica and I went out to where our group of friends were waiting by the road to cheer on Franco. As he passed by us, he stopped to give sweaty hugs to everybody, eat a banana, put some lotion on his feet, and change his socks. He thanked everybody for coming and then shot off again. This guy, along with over 100 other runners, started that morning before the sun came up and kept running until the sun went down. My friend, Franco, finished a 100 mile ultramarathon that took 22 hours to run, and got 11th place out of 105 runners!

Talk about an incredible act of athleticism! This guy is a serious runner with serious determination! But really, we’re all runners, aren’t we? Just in a different way. At some point in our lives every one of us has done, or is doing the same thing as Jonah: Running from God’s command. At first, it was probably uncomfortable. You felt the conviction of it and you felt guilty. But that selfish nature inside of you wants you to keep going. And soon it started to get easier. And you began to have a selfish pleasure about it. But this kind of running doesn’t lead to healthier living. This kind of running, like with Jonah, leads to personal destruction.



Here’s the saddest part of it all. Jonah didn’t just run from God’s command to love people. When he fled, he ran from the very presence of God. You need to remember that. When God calls you to something, and you choose to run, you’re not just running from the call. You’re running from God Himself. because you cannot stay in His presence if you are disobeying His command. You can’t choose to rebel against his commands and still believe you two are on good terms. It doesn’t work like that.

When temptation comes, you’ve got to determine now that you will not run from the command. Determine now, that you will choose to stay by God’s side. 

But why? Maybe you’re asking what the big deal is anyway. I mean, you’re comfortable with your spirituality now, right? At least you’re not as bad as most of the others kids at school, right? But that’s the thing about your relationship with God; He’s not comparing you to the other kids. Your relationship with Him is personal. So while you may think you’re ok because you’re better than so-and-so, God isn’t feeling the same. It’s like a husband saying his marriage is amazing while the wife says they’re just barely surviving.

Next post we’re going to jump into the first verses of Jonah’s story, and I’m going to explain the why: Why should I even want to stay by God’s side if He’s going to command me to do things I don’t want to do? And why is it so difficult for me to do what’s right and stop running away when it gets tough? For now, you just need to take some time to define your relationship with God, not by what you like to think it is, but by the way He defines it. Have you remained close by His side even through the difficult commands?

The Lost Younger Brother

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“THE TWO LOST SONS”
MESSAGE #1:  The Lost Younger Brother

“The Prodigal Son” / Read Luke 15:11-31

“Among all the things that our Lord said, none is more wonderful in its light and its shade, its color and its glory, than this.” – G. Campbell Morgan

There are two mistakes we often make with this parable:
  • We underestimate its depth
Essentially retells the story of the entire Bible and the story of the Human race.  If the teachings of Jesus can be likened to a lake – this parable is one of the clearest spots where we can see all the way to the bottom.
  • We limit its application
Luke 15:1-2   Then drew near unto him all the publicans and sinners for to hear him. 2And the Pharisees and scribes murmured, saying, This man receiveth sinners, and eateth with them. 3And he spake this parable unto them… 11And he said, A certain man had two sons…

Self Indulgence Vs. Moral Conformity

“There are two ways to be your own Savior and Lord.  One is by breaking all the moral laws and setting your own course, and one is by keeping all the moral laws and being very, very good.  …Within this story, Jesus teaches that the two most common ways to live are both spiritual dead ends.  …Jesus purpose is not to warm our hearts, but to shatter our categories.” -Tim Keller “Prodigal God” K.p. 1111

Our story begins at the Father’s House…

(Where there is love, abundance, freedom, faith)
  • THE DEPARTURE
Luke 15:11-13   And he said, A certain man had two sons: 12And the younger of them said to his father, Father, give me the portion of goods that falleth to me. (GIVE ME MY SHARE OF THE ESTATE) And he divided unto them his living (Grk. “Bios” LIFE). 13And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous (RECKLESS – self indulgent) living.

NOTE:  To ask this while the Father still lived was essentially to wish him dead.  The younger son was saying essentially that he wants his father’s things…but not his Father.

“His relationship to the father has been a means to an end of enjoying his wealth, and now he is weary of that relationship.  He wants out.”
  • THE DISCOVERY
Luke 15:14-19   14And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want. 15And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine. 16And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him. 17And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger! 18I will arise and go to my father, and will say unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and before thee, 19And am no more worthy to be called thy son: make me as one of thy HIRED SERVANTS.

NOTE:  “Hired Servants” were various kinds of tradesman and craftsmen who lived in local villages and earned a wage.  The younger son hoped to gain an apprenticeship whereby he might repay his Father and re-enter the family.
  • THE DELIVERER
20And he arose, and came to his father. But when he was yet a great way off, his father saw him, and had compassion, and ran, and fell on his neck, and kissed him. 21And the son said unto him, Father, I have sinned against heaven, and in thy sight, and am no more worthy to be called thy son. 22But the father said to his servants, Bring forth the best robe, and put it on him; and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet: 23And bring hither the fatted calf, and kill it; and let us eat, and be merry: 24For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found. And they began to be merry.

“As a general rule, distinguished Middle Eastern patriarchs did not run.  Children might run; women might run; young men might run.  But not the PATERFAMILIAS, the dignified pillar of the community, the owner of the great estate.  He would not pick up his robes and bare his legs like some boy.  But this father does.  He runs to his son and, showing his emotions openly, falls upon him and kisses him.” - Tim Keller “Prodigal God” K.p. 235

This story ends where it began…at the Father’s House.

CONCLUSION

Read Luke 15:1-10
Similarities:  Something is lost / Something is found / There is rejoicing
One Difference…  The elder brother refuses to come seek him.  He refused to pay the price.  But our elder brother DID.