KICKING THE BUCKET LIST

In 2007 Rob Reiner produced a movie called The Bucket List.  It was the story of two terminally ill seniors (Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman) who wanted to fulfill a list of things they always wanted to do before they die or… kick the bucket.  I am not sure if Reiner coined the term ‘the bucket list’ or merely popularized it, but it has become part of our vernacular.

The concept of a life list predates the movie by a long way.  In the 1960’s when football coach Lou Holtz was 28 years old he was between jobs, and his wife was expecting their third child and he sat down and put together a list of 107 things he wanted to accomplish in his lifetime.   The list became a guiding force in his life and allowed him to achieve numerous things including coaching the legendary Notre Dame Fighting Irish, being on the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, meeting the pope, jumping out of an airplane, flying a jet fighter and having dinner at the White House.  At 76 years old Holtz has completed 95 of the 107 things on his list and is still going.  Now retired from football he is a motivational speaker that is fond of saying, “Write down everything you hope to achieve in life, then make sure you do something every day to realize one of your dreams. You are going to encounter adversity but you will also … take big, satisfying bites out of life.  If you’re bored with life – you don’t get up every morning with a burning desire to do things – you don’t have enough goals. “

I have always had a bucket list of sorts. Mine mostly have to do with seeing the world. The Holyland was near the top of the list. I was less concerned with seeing it before I died, and more concerned with getting their before someone blew it up. As it was we got there just after the last war with Lebanon and the tourists were nowhere to be found.  The Great Pyramids of Giza were another must do for me.  We visited them for our 25th anniversary.  Turns out the are much smaller than one might think, you can lift them up with one hand.

Today I need to rethink my list.  Every summer since I was a kid we have taken our summer vacation on Lake of the Woods in Ontario.  My passion is to run around the lake in a power boat exploring the 1000’s of islands and bays.  My goal was to one day cross the 80 mile lake from the north side (where we are) to the south side where the city of Warroad, Minnesota is located.  It is not just a matter of the significant distance by water, it is getting across Big Traverse Bay.  This one stretch of water is 40 miles long by 40 miles wide, without any islands.  When the wind comes up the waves can swell to 7 or 8 feet high making it impassable to virtually any typical lake boat.  I have a friend that pastors a church in Warroad and he had invited me to come and preach at his church this summer.  How good was this?  Go preach the gospel, and check a major lifelong goal off the list.  I barely slept last night as I ran the details of the trip over and over in my head.  Extra gas, warm clothes, drinking water and of course a cell phone in case we had mechanical problems and ended up stranded in the middle of Big Traverse.  As it turned out there was no cell phone reception so it was good thing we didn’t break down.  I had carefully plotted the route on my GPS as Lake of the Woods is a treacherous waterway with countless rocks and reefs, and once into Big Traverse you cannot see land for quite some time.

Today was the day and Kathy and I set out at 7:00AM.  We needed to set a torrid pace of a steady 40+ MPH if we were going to get there before the service started at 10:00 AM.   Plus at the halfway mark, we had to go through customs at a remote US border phone booth at what is called the Northwest Angle, a carteographical mistake that has left a chunk of the USA in Canada. Apparently we have Ben Franklin to blame for the blunder.  We reached the station just after 8:00 Am so things were looking good.  The US customs phone booth is pretty much out in the bush and is basically on the honors system.  The uncommonly cheerful customs lady answered the phone on the first ring.  We gave her our names, passport numbers and boat registration numbers.  She then wanted to know of course if we were carrying any citrus fruit as if to say, “You can transport all the guns and drugs you like, just don’t bring us any dang fruit.”

Cleared for entry we made our way to the opening of Big Traverse Bay.  We came around the corner of the last island blocking our way to a straight shot to Warroad… this was the moment I had waited my whole life to see.   As the wide expanse of water stretched out in front of us we were met with wall after wall of 3-4 foot waves.   Even as we slowed our pace, the waves crashed over the bow.  Less than a mile out we were forced to retreat and abandon our journey. It was over as soon as it had begun.  Almost comically we now we had to re-enter Canada.  I had called Canada Border Services the day before to ask about the location of their remote border crossing phone.  A most unhelpful agent told me it was on the east side of Cyclone island.  I informed her that it was a large island surrounded by rocks and that I needed to get the location correct.  I told her that Google Earth showed that side of the island as uninhabited and that perhaps it was on the west side.  She responded with… no joke… “Whatever!”  Turns out I was right it was on the west side.  It had a brand new $100,000 dock.  The phone booth however… was out of order.   The sign said, If phone is not operational call (this number) on your cell phone. Seems reasonable, except THERE IS NO CELL SERVICE HERE IN MIDDLE OF NOWHERE!  Eventually we found a summer resident on another island with a phone.  You see we needed to call the pastor of the church as well since he was standing on the dock in Warroad waiting to pick us up.  This day was not working out well for anyone.

I will make it up to my friend and preach at his church on another day.  I will however have to go by car to ensure that I do not leave him hanging, yet a second time.  As for my dream of crossing the Big Traverse?  I doubt I will ever have another go at it.  It was too big an expense in time and money (my boat gets 3 miles per gallon).  But Pastor Mark, you can’t let your dream die.  Why not?  In the greater scheme of things what does it matter?  It was just a self-indulgent fantasy.  The fact that I was on my way to preach was merely a justification.  There is nothing intrinsically wrong with our bucket list dreams, but if they serve no greater purpose than bragging rights, then they really are not that important.  If I swore to myself that someday I would jump out of a plane and then one day I did, how does that change anything?  Did it make my world a better place?  Did it even make me a better person?  Well it might, if I had some irrational fear I was trying to over come… like the irrational fear of falling to one’s death at terminal velocity from 10,000 feet above the ground.

What I am saying is that we cannot live our lives for a list.  We need to live for a purpose.  At the end of our lives it won’t matter how many planes you jumped out of, how many bridges you jumped off, or how many Big Traverse Bays you traverse.  What will matter is how you touched the lives of others; how you made your world a better place and how many people you bring with you into heaven.  That is why I need to return to Warroad and preach the gospel… but it doesn’t matter if I go by boat or not.  Incidentally, in the movie the Bucket List… our heroes died without fulfilling their lists.

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54 Responses to KICKING THE BUCKET LIST

  1. Gus Booth says:

    Great point about having a bucket list that has eternal value!! Looking forward to having u preach at WCC!!!!!!

  2. Stephen says:

    We as disciples of Jesus are not to be part of the world, we are not of this world. Do you think Mark that it would be possible, just one time to say one sermon or write one blog without incorporating the world we’re to have nothing to do with. Seems quite obvious you love and are into this world and it’s lusts neck deep. “Famous” people and movies is all you seem to use to relate the Word of God to your sheeple. Heard more about everyonne else then i did about Jesus at that pathetic stadium sermon. Get it together, the end times are near and people need Jesus, not stories of other people or how smart your family is.

  3. CLunn says:

    I love the way that Pastor Mark preaches- I think that a lot of people can relate better with his way of preaching and if using examples of Super heroes to help people understand and they give their life to Christ, then it is more than worth it! I have learned more from listening to him the past three years than I did most of my life growing up listening to sermons…..I say – Keep up the good work!! Keep pouring out that Jesus Power!!!

  4. Meilinda says:

    @Stephen: all pastor have their own way to preach. And this is his way.
    This is how he connect people to God, and nothing wrong with that.

    That’s why there’s lots of churches and different kind of pastor. You can choose your own favourite church and pastor.

    For sure, we do not belong in this world, but we still live in it, and it’s a struggle everyday not to live in sin. It’s in our blood. And that’s why we go to church and we do need God.

    Pastor Mark gave lots of example about other people (not just famous people), because he wants to show us that we too, can be that kind of person.
    That’s also count as a testimony, for other Christians.
    2 Timothy 1:8 ESV – Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord, nor of me his prisoner, but share in suffering for the gospel by the power of God.

    We can always learn about Jesus deeper in bible study. And that’s what bible study are for.

  5. Stephen says:

    Lost souls. Get on your knees and repent and beg Jesus to reveal himself to you. He is the living God. Quit chasing man and mans knowledge. We are commanded to follow Jesus and His teachings as recorded in the gospels Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. We will be judged according to the words recorded in these gospels that Jesus spoke.
    Time to quit playing church and time to ask Jesus if He is pleased with, and if He knows you.
    I believe Mark Hughes made it quite clear what he’s about when he told the “joke” about writing a sermon and in return getting bucket full of cash. A leopard can’t hide it’s spots.
    May Jesus bless his children and give us more time to come to Him.

  6. Mark Hughes says:

    Stephen
    The expression is ‘A leopard can’t change its spots’. I guess I know that because I am far more worldly than you. But my question is; what do you feel you can accomplish by trying to change my spots? No one can change another person or make them the way they want them to be. I am who I am and I do not apologize for it. I know what God has called me to do and how. All I can do is be faithful to it.
    I am not sure why if you don’t like my presentation of the gospel you don’t find someone you do like. There are all kinds of preachers and churches that have the more religious approach to Christianity that you seem to favour.
    I am all for healthy debate but I am not prepared to let you just come on my blog and insult me and others. I have asked the moderator to put your posts under review and to use his discretion as to what he feels is proper discourse. So maybe I will hear from you… or maybe not.

  7. Stephen says:

    Your blog, you can do what you want.

  8. Sally says:

    Stephen, time to get rid of your “religious spirit” and love people the way Jesus does. And note I say does. I have found that some people can be won by the fire and brimstone message but most are won by the love and goodness of God. Pastor Mark preaches the gospel in a way that many people can relate to and there is not one day when we have our church gatherings that people are not saved. I am curious as to how many people you have won to the Lord personally and in your church.just for comparison sake!

  9. Stephen says:

    Winning people to church does not equal winning people to the Lord Sally. Church is where you find the religious spirit Sally. You seem to be living in the bizaro world. Only Jesus can win people to the Father. Organised religion hands out religious spirits, only Jesus hands out the Holy Spirit. Fact is, one of us is wrong. God is not the author of confusion. So why dhould we shop for a pastor or denomination that best suits us? There is inly one way, Jesus is the way.

    • Evelyn Bennett says:

      I thought church was compiled of the broken hearted. The people who need healing and understanding. The most of all of these is love and compassion.

  10. Don G Kemp says:

    Hi Pastor Mark,

    I really enjoy your blog as well as you messages and I wanted to enter in my own opinion/belief on the matter here. As someone who thoroughly appreciates those sermons I think I understand what stephen was trying to state, albeit not in the best way, to put it mildly. I think we actually must be careful not to try to make the gospel relevant by using too much of world/pop culture. The gospel itself is the inspired, holy word of God and as such it in itself should make us feel awe and the power of Gods truth. It should’nt have to be wrapped up too much inside todays popular or trendy things. If anything they should sit at the feet of the gospel, so to speak, and perhaps accent and perhaps in some way parallel its points to help disciples to understand, similar to the parables used in scripture itself. I think thats where many, “rigid” Christians for lack of a better description, make the error. I dont think you’re actively trying to use it to fool people or just as entertainment as a means to get our fellows to come, and then to hear the gospel after. And please I mean no offense when use the term ‘rigid’, I could not think to another way to say it at the moment. I believe you utilize it as a method to get folks to understand some of what scripture teaches because like it or not, we the average bible reader, may not always get it. Which is not to say we cannot over time and with much prayer, understand what the Word and in essence, God, has to show us as we get into it daily.(such study and meditation has yielded so very much to myself already) However, Pastor Mark Hughes, and those like him, have dedicated their lives to serving God and others and as a leader and teacher uses whatever godly and biblically sound methods God grants him to help the rest of us better understand too.

    On a sidenote, I wasnt at the on heart service but from some accounts I have heard and seen via blogs and videos I can also understand where stephens coming from on this too. On the other end of the spectrum at least we’re trying by getting together. Not to sound harsh (and failing miserably i’d imagine)but some of the churches here and elsewhere are dead, lost or both and they could use the guidance from those that are not. At any rate, that’s my humble God given opinion ( ohh yup..I can feel my free will kicking in) thanks to any and all who cared to read my thoughts. I am trying to follow my Lord, day in, day out as best I can.

    God bless you all brethren and keep on keeping on Pastor Mark.

  11. Stephen says:

    Thanks for sticking up for Jesus Don. Since Jesus has revealed himself to me and gifted me with the Holy spirit i speak on His behalf only. I get persecuted every day for stating what’s in the Bible but the info was given to me BY the Living Word of God who is Jesus. Jesus is the living Word of God.
    No man made church can save anybody. Why don’t you send me the Email or letter or facsimile that God or Jesus has sent you Sally or sent to church of the rock proving that people we’re saved. Or did these people come back from the dead to tell you? Just wondering how it works. Last i heard, it was up to Jesus who gets saved.
    All we are to do is point people to Jesus and not sugar coat the gospel. A little leaven, leaveneth the whole lump.
    Jesus is looking for a spotless bride and i can assure you it takes more then the “sinners” prayer to become clean.
    The grace gospel is a scam. There is no grace for people who continue to sin. There is no once saved always saved.
    There is on only striving every day to get closer to Jesus and he DEMANDS obedience and long-suffering.
    If you love Him, you will keep his commandments and he commands us to stop sinning.
    I’m sure someone will ignore all the facts i’ve quoted from the Bible and challenge my spelling or my character to try and discredit the facts. That’s fine, you can all laugh at me I’m used to it. But i urge caution, careful who you laugh at cause that person may be speaking on behalf of the Holy Spirit. I personally wouldn’t want to insult the Holy Spirit.
    May Jesus bless all of you with the Spirit of Truth.

  12. Sally says:

    Just for your information Stephen and Don we don’t just win people to church we win them to Jesuc Christ and if you have listened to any of Pastor Marks messages it is not a gospel of easy grace. Even Jesus used what was relevant in His day to reach the people of his time so I am not where sure where you fellows are coming from. And just to let you know we don’t just get them saved we get them discipled so they can go out and reach others for the Kingdom of God;and we have a lot of fun doing it. God is a good God and He is a God of love and He loves to see His children happy. And me thinks you could benefit from some of that joy!

  13. Steve says:

    Jesus is love and Jesus is jealous for His people at the same time.
    I think we can all learn to see the 2 by fours in our own eyes. Why is it that nobody can admit any wrong doing these days?
    I think I know what the problem is, we are the problem and Jesus wants to show us all where we are wrong and He is right.

    • Lori says:

      … our loving God loves those who obey Him? Huh? He loves us all. Unconditionally. He loves us too much to let us stay where we are. If you think God only loves those who love Him, me thinks you missed the point.

  14. Stephen says:

    Myself Sally, i’ll take a lifetime of misery for an eternity of serving Jesus. You just remember that our loving God loves those who obey Him. Our loving God took away paradise from Adam and Eve FOR JUST ONE SIN. And i alao believe he took away Moses promise for one sin as-well. So why you think he won’t judge us with the same harshness is beyond me. He didn’t send his only begotten Son to live a hard life and be crucified so that we can have an easy fun life. Wake up and rid yourself of your religious spirit.

    • Evelyn Bennett says:

      All sin was planted on the cross when we accepted Jesus as our Savior. The basis of this teaching was so that we can see the world the way God sees it.

  15. Christopher says:

    This is fallible. what a joke. a preacher on his own agenda to preach to the saved on the churches tab.

    Keep on tithing people. There is no bucket except in the pulpit.

  16. Connie Lunn says:

    Stephen and Christopher,
    If this site is such a thorn in your side, perhaps you need to do something about it instead of posting such comments.
    Your beliefs are just that “YOURS”! No need to slam others – not so sure Jesus would approve of that! I pray for you!

    • Evelyn Bennett says:

      thank you for explaining views in a non judgmental way. love and mercy are the tools God has given his people to help guide those to the cross who have not yet experienced the love of Jesus Christ.

  17. Stephen says:

    Who have i slammed? It’s no a slam to say that obviouly there’s a lot of “disciples” of Mark Hughes and his church of thr rock. Not sure what that has to do with Jesus and His teachings. Any of you gonna make a stand for Jesus or are you just gonna keep stucking up for Mark and religion. And seriously Connie, i’m not here to promote myself snd ask for tithes, i’m here to get people to think for themselves and turn to Jesus. Posting my comments is what i’m doing about it. You tell me it’s just “my beliefs” but if you really knew the Word of God you would know what i’m talking about.

    • Evelyn Bennett says:

      Whoa Whoa Whoa. God has gifted Mark with the ability to lead those who are lost to Jesus Christ. Do you attend Church of the Rock? If so maybe you would like to consider being an intern through MP3

  18. Evelyn Bennett says:

    I love the bucket list analogy. I too have come to another crossroads. Just last night I attempted writing my eulogy. However I am so close on becoming an author I can taste it. Throughout my life God has caught my attention through education and entertainment. I will share my testimony sometime. The good things come from our desires to please God. God will do the rest for us. We just need to be able to see and hear the blessing.

  19. Sally says:

    I think Stephen you have an underlying motive in your hatred of Pastor Mark and our Church and my prayer for you is that you truly know and experience the true love of Father God for you. And as I have said before, God is a God of Love and the message of the Gospel is one of love. In the world there is and old adage that says you get more bees with honey than you do with vinegar. I think I prefer the first method which is God’s way, the way of love rather than your way of harsh judgments. I don’t how you came to believe as you do but I know one thing that if you truly knew God as He truly is you would be sending a different message, one of unity with your brothers and sisters in Christ, one of forgiveness, one of love, joy and peace. These are the fruits of the spirit. The God of the Bible, the God of Abraham Jacob and Issac is the God who loved us so much that He sent His only Son Jesus Christ to die for us. That is true love. And when you love God and accept Him as your Lord, Saviour, Redeemer and Friend you take on His attributes of loving your neighbour more than yourself. I John 4:7 says Beloved, let us love one another for love is of God and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God for God is love. Further along in verse 20 he says ” If someone says “I love God” and hates his brother is a liar, for he who does not love his brther whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen. And this is the commandment we have from Him that he who loves God MUST love his brother also. Jesus last words to us was that He prayed that we would be one as He and the Father are one so that the world would know that the Father had sent Him. He says in Ephesians 4;13 that we should all come to unity in the faith and in Psalm 133:1 Behold how good and pleasant it is for bretheren to dwell together in unity. I think when we all came together at One Heart was an example of us showing unity and love.

  20. Steve says:

    I like what my Pastor said one time. He said that unity in Christ is not compromising for the sake of unity. If their is sin that needs to be dealt with then it needs to be dealt with not unified into the body of Christ.
    We love each other and we love each other enough to convict each other.

  21. Stephen says:

    Better to get slapped with the Truth then kissed with a lie. You accuse me of hating when i am Truly concerned for peoples souls. I could also quote scripture about what Jesus says about getting into heaven but it wouldn’t agree with your fairy tale, so i’ll let it be.
    Steve, i sure like you. You’re a pretty wise guy. Keep up the good work brother. Blessings to all followers of Yeshua. May He bind the bad things and loose His good things in each and everyonne of us.

  22. Sally says:

    I would have to agree with you Steve if sin was the case and rhe gospel message was being compromised,but it is not. However, since you are of the mind to stand in continuous judgment of your brothers and sisters in Christ all I have to say is what Jesus would say Father forgive them for they know not what they do and I release you into God’s hands to perfect that in you that needs to be perfected. And I bless you as we are commanded to do. May God’s richest’s blessings of love, joy peace, wisdom and understanding fall upon you now in Jesus Name amen!

    • Steve says:

      I bless you as well Sally. I heard a preacher say that those who are close to Christ are more aware of their sin and those who are far away are unaware.
      I think we all have sin to deal with in our lives and it says in the Bible that anyone who says they have no sin is a liar.

      • Steve says:

        And maybe Sally, if you hand me over to satan I will stop giving out bibles to people who nobody else has the guts to give to like the guy at work yesterday who never has a good thing to say about Christians or God but he thanked me for the free bible I gave him.

  23. Mark Hughes says:

    In Phil 1:15-18 Paul said, “Some indeed preach Christ even from envy and strife, and some also from good will: The former preach Christ from selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing to add affliction to my chains; but the latter out of love, knowing that I am appointed for the defense of the gospel. What then? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is preached; and in this I rejoice, yes, and will rejoice.” So even though he did not agree with their approach he did not slam them for what they did or what they believed but found the commonality that the gospel was being preached and in that he rejoiced.

    We have let this go on long enough. There is nothing Christ-like about telling others that they are deceived or ignorant or that my version of the gospel is better than yours. This post has been hijacked by a personal agenda and taken on a direction that is not edifying or in love. If anyone wants to discuss the actual subject at hand feel free, but this other rabbit trail is now closed.

  24. Steve says:

    I know I could speak love and kindness till I’m blue in the face with you guys but if I disagree on one thing you say you will condemn me so I just say bless you and good luck with everything.
    I’m gonna leave this blog alone from now on. Take care.

  25. Sally says:

    You are right, Pastor Mark, now about the Bucket list. I agree with you if all your goals in life are just for edifying yourself, they are just a bunch of self- serving goals that gives one a big ego. Our legacy should be one of serving others unselfishly and for making the world a better place to live in. I am rethinking how I can go about doing this as I want to be able to stand before my God and have Him say “Well done, my good and faithful servant”. I am glad that there are examples in the Word of peoples later days being effective for the Kingdom like Daniel serving when he was 80 years old. That gives hope to everyone!

    • Steve says:

      I was thinking how I responded to You Sally and it was probably not what Christ would have wanted me to say.
      I am not going to say I was wrong about what I see going on in the church today but I will say that Jesus has better ways of responding to people than how I did.
      God bless you Sally and don’t forget to forgive me because we need to forgive. I forgive you as well.

  26. Sally says:

    No offense was taken Steve and if there had been; I would have to do what Pastor Mark always tell us to do anyway and that is we forgive all people all the time! I think that is one thing we all need to put on our bucket lists!

    • Steve says:

      Amen and God bless you. We serve a good God.

      • Steve says:

        Sally, I’ve been thinking about what you said, how I judge my brothers and I believe you are partly right.
        I’ve been listening to some old Billy Graham sermons (unbelievably POWERFUL!) and you know Mr Graham never judged anyone, he simply pointed them to Christ. But at the same time Billy Graham would not hide or try to cover over the things that God was wanting to do in Christian’s lives. He would make a lot of people very uncomfortable because his message was a message of love, not pride in one’s self or their accomplishments.
        I think I have judged my brothers in spite and that is not how Christ works but at the same time I believe that Jesus is asking His Church today to give up the pride in self and begin to receive His power which comes from reclining on Christ not our own strength.
        Anyways I hope my brothers and sisters can forgive me because we all need forgiveness and we all need the power of Christ to be our strength. God bless.

  27. BILL LENNOX says:

    using current affairs to teach a biblical truth is not new…Mark stole that from the bible! Jesus mentioned the tower that fell on some men and used that to urge men to repent. Paul noted that men had made an inscription to an unknown god and used that to point them to the living God. Paul said he became all things to all men so that he might save some. We should use our present culture as a springboard to show the relevance of the gospel as the bible writers did…or we will become irrelevant in our delivery of the gospel.. If it is not distasteful then it is fair game to use as a reference. The whole world is chasing a bucket list of dead end dreams and we should kindly let them know!

  28. lss says:

    It is always a pleasure to get some insight on what you’ve been up to Mark and I enjoy the way you share your life experiences.
    In this case you are right on as far as I’m concern with setting goals or making a bucket list. It can be more of a distraction and offer little value at times.
    Don’t get me wrong I’m a list guy. I like to see what I need to get done, pray about it and cross them off along the way. However flexibility is important. The self-conscious person say’s, ” I’m going to do this no matter what.” This can be hard on everyone else around them.

  29. suzie says:

    Wow, I’ve read the blog, laughed myself silly – Traverse Bay – really!!! You’re brave…or? I’ve also read the posts and was so surprised at the controversial tone and turn it took. It sounds like Pastor Mark was on vacation, his adventure didn’t turn out like he hoped and he turned it into a teachable moment. Did not our Lord do that all the time? I have been able to use this story and his example many times talking over a campfire this last weekend because it was Traverse Bay and my friends fish in the Kenora area. It opened up a great window to speak of the gospel to friends and family in a non invasive threatening and religious way. That is how you use wordly examples to tell about Jesus. Too easy.

  30. Steve says:

    Hey Pastor Mark! I listened to your last sermon and loved it. God bless you!
    Keep spreading the love of Jesus through this city because Winnipeg needs to know Jesus loves them.

  31. Steve says:

    Yo Pastor Mark, I listened to your last sermon again and really enjoyed it.
    It’s good to see a Pastor who cares about his church.
    I bless you Pastor Mark and thank you for listening to God in your life because us sheep need godly Shepherds who care about God’s church.

  32. mdw says:

    Bucket list / Shmucket list. Nuff said.

    To @Stephen: I have marvelled at the pastors pop-culture knowledge myself and have wondered, how can one Pastor, if all one does is watch movies, or search for jokes. I do think he should tell less jokes. Seems to be a winning formula however. But no one is perfect, but praise God, God is and teaches us efficiency with time. I still enjoy Mark’s sermons, I’m never totally disgusted lol.
    Something tells me he was speaking to a worldly crowd at the stadium and therefore tried to use their language. could be..
    Gods will first and always..

  33. Steve says:

    God bless you Pastor Mark.
    I just felt the Lord telling me to bless you. I feel He wants you to lean not on your own understanding but lean on Him. Not that I am so smart, just that I know Jesus is smarter than me or anyone else and His Spirit is more powerful than my wisdom or anyone else.

  34. pamela doleman says:

    looks like i might be a bit late coming in on Stephan’s blog…opps i mean Marks blog… i am reminded of the scripture
    1 Corinthians 10:23

    Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

    23 “Everything is permitted,” you say? Maybe, but not everything is helpful. “Everything is permitted?” Maybe, but not everything is edifying.

  35. Steve says:

    You know, anything that I’ve said on here that was unedifying I apologise.
    I think the devil is playing with Christians heads these days trying to get everybody to hate everybody.
    You know what we all need, we all need a year of jubilee where we all forgive each other and let go of all the judgements we have put on one another.
    I believe we would be walking in His Spirit and leaning not on our own understanding if we all did that.

  36. Dave C says:

    I have read all of the posts on this subject
    and can truly tell the dissenters that Pastor Mark is not only Blessed he is also Anointed to carry out the will of the FATHER, SON, & HOLY SPIRIT to his brothers and sisters in the world just where they are.Blessings.

    • John says:

      I don’t disagree with this post. It’s actually good advice. But it’s advice from a person. Pastors of all churches are people who interpret the bible and they are prone to the same failings as the rest of us (bias, hubris, prejudice) Like anything else, a sermon, a blog post, an article, should always be reviewed critically and challenged if necessary. Absolute power corrupts absolutely and we should never hand that power over to anyone.

  37. Steve says:

    Ezekiel 34. I’d suggest reading it. A good chapter for a Pastor to measure themselves whether they are living up to God’s standards or not.

  38. Steve says:

    Hey guys, Pastor Mark, Church of the Rock.
    The Lord has been putting this on my heart as of late. This is what the Lord has been telling me.
    Jesus loves you. He loves you so much that He is really trying to make something clear today, to me and you and every1 who believes in Jesus. He wants to unite us in love, in light and in His Holy Spirit.
    A great darkness is going to come on the earth and already has started. The devil is trying to get people like me who have had the gift of prophecy to get angry at the church who Jesus loves and which yes, I am a part of as well.
    The devil is trying to get us all to point fingers at legalists, flakes, lukewarm churches, Pentecostals, Baptists, Prosperity Teachers and whoever else. The more we point fingers in scorn and the less we speak the truth in love, we, whoever we are, Pastor, prophet or preacher are making the devil a happy guy.
    We are to unite in the light of Jesus which is the forgiveness of all sin. We are to lay down our lives for each other in love. Rich or poor. We are to all surrender to love.
    If we have failed miserably at this, today is a new day and Jesus is giving us the chance to shine like stars in this dark world through His mercy to us and through us in love.
    This love and mercy of Jesus is the only thing that will protect us and keep us in safety as the darkness gets darker. His light will shine brighter in us. We are His chosen light bearers and today is the day we need to forgive all offenses and unite as One Church in obedience to Christ.
    God bless you

  39. Steve says:

    You know, I am really feeling the Spirit of God on me today and I want to relay a message the Lord is giving me for His Church today.
    Jesus is calling His people to a much closer walk with Him today. To walk in forgiveness and love for one another, to turn away from the lusts of the flesh and to make amends where there has been great wounds inflicted.
    Jesus wants to bring an outpouring of His Spirit on His people like never before.
    Where we have been wrong in our thinking, today is the day of forgiveness and mercy from God to us. We can admit where we have been wrong this day, because Jesus is going to support us. We no longer have to come up with a plan to get Jesus to support us, rather we are to let Jesus pour out His plan in us and lift us with the power of His Spirit!
    Jesus is going to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children and the hearts of the children to the fathers.
    Jesus is saying, there is no program that can do this. There is no single church that can do this. Only Jesus can do this and it is our job as His people to come under the authority of His Kingship this day. To lay our positions down and allow Jesus to call the shots!
    When we humble ourselves before Him, a mighty wind will blow on His people and an outpouring of His Spirit will fall like the rain of heaven!
    God bless you!

  40. Christian says:

    Mark,
    Jesus never abolished the Ten Commandments.

    Take care.

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