Wednesday, February 19, 2014


“When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory.” (Col.3:4 NKJV)

Here we see the flip side of the same coin.  Much of what Paul writes in the third chapter of Colossians concerns our position in Christ.  But, in verse four, the Apostle notes our provision of Christ.  Yes, we are in Christ, but also, Christ is in us!  These are two sides of the same Christian coin.

Jesus doesn’t just give us life as something apart from Himself—He is our life!    This means that Jesus, by His Spirit, now indwells you—the all-sufficient resource for all you face. 

The Christian life is simply Jesus being Jesus in and through you.  We may think the Christian life is difficult.  No!  It’s impossible!  We could never hope to live up to the standard set by the sinless Savior.

Only one Person has ever lived the Christian life as it is meant to be lived—that is Jesus Himself! That is still the way it works—the Christ life expressed through the Christian’s life.

 Rather than rely on our puny resources, we can rest in His powerful ones!  That’s why we are more than conquerors through Him. 

It isn’t a victory at the end where we barely pull it out.  We may have the erroneous idea that on one side there is the devil and on the other side there is Jesus.  They are up and down the court of time scoring basket after basket—nip and tuck all the way.  Then we come into the final seconds of human history, with God’s team down by two points.  As the clock goes to zero the last shot has left the Lord’s hand and it swishes through the net for a three pointer—the buzzer sounds—and we win!  The truth is that the contest isn’t even close—more like 9,000-0!  Scripture doesn’t just say that we conquer, but that we are super-abundant conquerors through Jesus!

Now, that should fill us and thrill us with hope!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014


“If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God.  ‎Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.  ‎For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.  ‎When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory.” (Colossians 3:1-4 NKJV)

The Devil has to go through the Father and then the Son to get to us.  Then, he encounters a believer indwelt by the Spirit. By the time Satan reaches us, his intended evil has become God’s intended good. That’s security!

Knowing we are secure in Christ is foundational to spiritual growth.  A believer who lacks assurance will never be what he could be. Picture two men who each own a parcel of land.  Both plan to build.  One of them, however, checks the deed repeatedly.  He is concerned that maybe the deed is not really filed, or maybe it is filed improperly, and can think of a host of issues that worry him.  The other man accepts the facts and builds rigorously.  You will not be built up in faith until you see that you are secure in Him.  
           WE ARE IDENTIFIED WITH CHRIST’S REDEEMING DEATH (v.3)  When Jesus died, we died with Him! Paul develops this doctrine in Romans 6 in great detail. Being crucified with Christ means we are dead to sin. What if I told you Bonnie and Clyde just robbed a bank? You’d say, “They can’t!  They’re dead!”  So, we are dead to sin.  The sinner that I was has been nailed to the cross with Jesus.

           WE ARE IDENTIFIED WITH CHRIST’S RESURRECTION LIFE (v.1a)  The power that brought Christ from the tomb now brings us out of spiritual death and into resurrection life. That power now enables us to meet and overcome every challenge in life. Today you can exchange human weakness for heavenly power.  That is enough—more than enough!

           WE ARE IDENTIFIED WITH CHRIST’S REIGNING VICTORY (v.1b-2)  We are seated with Christ. So we seek after heavenly things, because we’re seated in heavenly places. Christ is seated in the position of authority and in Ephesians the Word of God says we are seated with Him. There He reigns as Lord and in union with Him we are masters of every situation. There is nothing over our head that’s under His feet.

           WE ARE IDENTIFIED WITH CHRIST’S RETURNING GLORY (v.4)  We are returning with Christ. Christ has promised to come for His bride. At the rapture, the dead in Christ will rise and living saints will be transformed—all caught up to heaven. After the seven years of tribulation, when judgments are poured out on a Christ rejecting world, we return with Him to reign. The godly, growing Christian looks for the heavenly city.

Monday, February 17, 2014


“If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God.  Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth.  For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.   When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory.  Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.  Because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience, in which you yourselves once walked when you lived in them.  But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth.  Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him, where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all.” (Colossians 3:1-11 NKJV)

We dip ‘em and drop ‘em—have you heard that expression before?  It means that Baptists are notorious for getting decisions, but not much for gaining disciples. 
Last week we rightfully celebrated baptism, but already we are making plans for those children to be taught more about what it means to follow Christ.  We know that physical growth is to be paired with spiritual maturity.  This past Sunday morning, we had a group of folks who met beginning at 8:00, and stayed until the afternoon as through this new member class, and ongoing ministry, we make every effort to connect them with the church.

As someone has well said, “We are good at obstetrics, but poor at pediatrics.”  Yet, all the New Testament shows that the Gospel not only is meant to save sinners, but is meant to strengthen saints.
There is no hope for the church that is distracted from disciple-making.  At best, such a church becomes a revolving door, with members coming in and others going out, as fast—or faster.  The front door of evangelizing the sinner is essential, but the back door must be nailed shut by embracing the saved.

It has been noted that a lot of Christians have a spiritual experience like an old iron bedstead—firm on both ends and sagging in the middle!  They are firm on the end of their conversion by Christ and on the end of the consummation with Christ, but in this present time, they aren’t amounting to much.  Our story commences with regeneration, and concludes with glorification, but the chapters in between need to be connected by sanctification—and that’s what Paul is calling for in the third chapter of Colossians.
There is hope for the church that welcomes new people with open arms, connects them to truth through the teaching of the Word, gives support and encouragement that strengthens them in the challenges which must surely  come—that has a love that will not let others go.

Thursday, February 13, 2014


Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one.” (Colossians 4:6 NKJV)

The fact that God has mandated Christians to witness to the lost, does not mean that the manner of our witness doesnt matter.  It does!

We cant be like a bull in the china shop.  Nor are we to be obnoxious.  Some come across as hired gun-slingers looking to put another notch in their belt.  Some like this sanctimoniously boast, I shared the Gospel and five people were saved!  The reality is that you cant know that.  You might say, They were hopefully converted, or they professed faith, but as to whether they were saved has yet to be determined.  We cant see in a heart.  The attitude conveyed by such statements is the problem.

The significance of the manner of witness is conveyed in this phrase: how you ought to answer each one.  Paul has already said that we ought to do itthats our mandate.  He next says to understand how we ought to sharethats our manner.

Our manner is to always be with grace.  We dont take a holier-than-thou attitude.  We realize that only grace has made us acceptable to God, and that same grace is available to others.  We are called to be witnesses, not prosecuting attorneys and certainly not judges! 

Our manner of speech is to be, seasoned with salt.  Salt enhances the flavor of food.  We need to convince people to taste what we are offering. 

Our manner of speech lets us, know how you ought to answer.  Peter said, always be ready to give a defense to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you.  People ought to see the hope in our disposition and hear the hope in our discussion.  This ought to cause them to wonder and then seek an answer for how we can have such hope in a hopeless age.  Then we are ready to tell them the difference Jesus makes!

The manner of our speech takes into account, each one.  A cookie-cutter approach wont work.  People are different.  Having a memorized outline, an array of verses committed to memorysome learned methodology may be helpful.  But, a canned speech that we are intent on reciting, rather than a compassionate heart willing to listen, will often be counterproductive.

But, there is one way in which everybody is identical.  People need the Lord.  Gods solution is likewise the same for everyoneJesus!

The Lords method for reaching the lost is unchanging: God expects us to tell them!  Give them hope!  Give them Jesus!  When a church does thisany church, anywherethere is no distinctionthere is hope for that church.


“Have you entered the treasury of snow…?” (Job 38:22a NKJV)

As I write these words from my perch in my study, I look out the window at a world blanketed with deep snow.  I have considered its beauty, been aggravated that it postponed a ballgame I wanted to watch, felt a quiet peace as I was forced to slow down, been out sledding like an overgrown kid, made snow cream, wondered about the need to scrape the parking lot before Sunday…and a swirl of other thoughts all inspired by the fluffy white stuff that descended from the clouds.

When you read these words, all that snow will have melted and maybe it was winter’s last hurrah, as the time for daffodils and crocuses to push up through the warming sod as harbingers of spring has come—and maybe not, because I recall the worst snowstorm I’ve ever been through was the blizzard of ’93 in March.  Weather in the short term can be unpredictable and for that far ahead nigh impossible to forecast—mostly guesswork based on averages and trends.

Life can be even more unpredictable. 

Just ask Job.  He was sailing along without a cloud in the sky when the storm broke upon him—and calamity followed calamity.  Some things didn’t make sense—and as we would all be tempted to do—he questioned God.

But, when God showed up, the tables were turned and God had some questions for Job!  One of those is a verse that arose in my mind this morning as I gazed on the winter wonderland outside.  “Have you entered the treasury of snow…?”

We certainly know more about how snow forms and when snow falls than Job ever did—yet it contains something of majesty and mystery still in our modern age.  There is a treasury of truth in the snow that we may explore.

No two snowflakes are identical—though out of the astronomical number of them, you could possibly find two that were nearly identical on a microscopic level, that on a molecular level—the answer is they are all unique.  So, God has made each of us special.  “Identical” twins may seem indistinguishable to us, and will have definite similarities—yet in some ways they will differ—as do all of us.  As snowflakes, we are designed by the same Maker but with an array of capacities, personalities, preferences and so much more.  God has a design and destiny for us all, just suited to us, and we find fulfillment and purpose when we discover and submit to that.

One snowflake isn’t much by itself.  Put a bunch of them together and they have power to impact a city.  This is the genius of the church.  Individual believers may not be able to accomplish much, but collectively we can be a great power for good in the world!

Snow is beneficial to the soil.  It prepares for the flowers of spring and crops of summer.  The needful moisture is put into the ground, slowly absorbed, and so even better than rain!  The term, “blanket of snow” is instructive because the snow actually traps the earth’s warmth around the roots of plants, protecting them from the frigid temperatures of winter.  What seems to be so cold and harsh is actually a blessing!  So much of what God permits to come into our lives, that we think is so brutal, actually proves to be a blessing in disguise.  He is at work to accomplish the end result of our good and His glory, though it seems very much the opposite at the time.

But my favorite part of the snow is its transformative power.  You may have a pile of trash outside and let the snow cover it and all that is changed—the ugliness is hidden and what you see is the beauty of white snow that covers it.  After David sinned, he cried out, “Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.” (Ps.51:7b) 

This is the promise of God,

Come now, and let us reason together,”
Says the LORD,
“Though your sins are like scarlet,
They shall be as white as snow;
Though they are red like crimson,
They shall be as wool. (Isa.1:18)

This is the greatest treasure of all—a life changed!  Sins gone; righteousness given—a new life in Christ is ours, irrespective of our past. 

The old hymn echoes this possibility:

Have Thine own way, Lord! Have Thine own way!
Search me and try me, Master, today!
Whiter than snow, Lord, wash me just now,
As in Thy presence humbly I bow.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014


that I may make it manifest, as I ought to speak.  Walk in wisdom toward those who are outside, redeeming the time.” (Colossians 4:4-5 NKJV)

Here is the great expectation: Paul says, I ought to speak.  He had a mandate from his Masterit wasnt up for debate or discussion. 

Folks, evangelism is not optional.  It isnt one of those things that a select few with a gift of evangelism are called to do.  There is a gift of evangelismI think of Billy Graham as an example.  Now, those kinds of folk are a select group but the reality is that God doesnt want you to be Billy GrahamHe wants you to be you, sharing your story with someone you know! 

Neither are you expected to tell more than you know but what you have experienced, to make it manifest.   I love the story in John chapter nine of the man born blind that Jesus healed.  Because the Lord did it on the Sabbath, the religious elite were infuriated that He had transgressed their traditional way of interpreting the Sabbath laws.  They summoned the man in and demanded that he tell them what was done.  How did the fellow respond?

So they again called the man who was blind, and said to him, “Give God the glory! We know that this Man is a sinner.”  He answered and said, “Whether He is a sinner or not I do not know. One thing I know: that though I was blind, now I see.”  (John 9:24-25)

He was not a Bible scholar, so he didn’t try to debate the finer points of theology.  There is no great virtue in ignorance, but we don’t have to wait until we are on the level of a seminary graduate to share what we do know!

You say that you dont know when to speak and what to say even if you knew when, but look at the mandate: walk in wisdom toward those who are outside.  We can ask God for wisdom and we can study the wisdom in the Word.  The Spirit of God will teach us!

How urgent is this?  We are to be redeeming the time.  We have a limited number of daysdeath and judgment are certain.  If we miss the deadline, then there is no hope!

So, let’s get busy!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014


“Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving; meanwhile praying also for us, that God would open to us a door for the word, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in chains...” (Colossians 4:2-3 NKJV)

Salvation is a supernatural worker and so soul-winning requires supernatural power.  See how Paul makes the connection between praying to God and proclaiming the Gospel in these verses.  An opened door by importunity with heaven can lead to an open door of opportunity on earth. 

The Apostle here calls the Word of God, the mystery of Christ.  The Greek term means a truth that is hidden now revealed.  Again, this requires the activity of God, although He will use us to communicate the truth.  Apart from the grace of God, all our talk will be to no avail.  Heres why:

“But even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing,  whose minds the god of this age has blinded, who do not believe, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine on them.” (2 Cor.4:3-4) 

Only God can open blind eyes and unstop deaf ears and take a dead heart that is hard as stone and make it a living heart of faith.  Prayer is the critical dimension that must precede our witness.  In it we have a weapon to drive away demonic darkness from the sinner and a power that gives us courage, compulsion and clarity to share the truth.

Jesus understood and taught that prayer precedes proclamation.

“But when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were weary and scattered, like sheep having no shepherd. Then He said to His disciples, ‘The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few.  Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.’ ” (Matt.9:36-38) 

So, He would later command them to wait in prayer at Pentecost so they could witness in power!  After a ten day prayer meeting, they preached for ten minutes and 3,000 were converted.  Isnt that the kind of effectiveness we seek?

Evangelism involves spiritual warfare, and the victory is won on our knees.  After Paul in Ephesians 6 describes the whole armor of God we must wear, he tells us that we are ready to pray, and as prayer is offered to make it a priority to petition God for open doors of evangelism.  Read it and apply it.  Knock on heaven’s door before you knock on your neighbor’s—but do both!

Monday, February 10, 2014


“Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving; meanwhile praying also for us, that God would open to us a door for the word, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in chains, that I may make it manifest, as I ought to speak.  Walk in wisdom toward those who are outside, redeeming the time.   Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one.” (Colossians 4:2-6 NKJV)

Charles Dickens wrote a book called, Great Expectations.  Long before he penned that title, there was another Book written which has the same theme.  That Book?  Its the Bible. 

This Book is full of great expectations of what God has in store for His people.  But, it is likewise true that the Scripture contains Gods great expectations for us. 

One of those great expectations is the Great Commissionthat God has called His church to share the Gospel with all humanity.  We have a message of hope to proclaim, and any church that is faithful in that has a reason for hope as a congregation.

We must admit that an increasing number of churches appear hopeless.  In large measure they have lost their enthusiasm for evangelism.  Rather than being fishers of men, they have become keepers of the aquarium, as someone once said.

There is many a dry baptistery!  I recall walking through the auditorium of a dying church, and looking into their baptistery.  Not only was it dry, but it was being used for storageevident that it was seldom used or that there was any expectation that it would be!

Still, even in a setting like that, there is hopeif (and this is the big IF)that church can once more have a pulse, joining Gods heartbeat for the harvest of souls.  Let us lean on the bosom of Christ, until our heart pounds with His great expectation!

Saturday, February 08, 2014


“And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.” (Colossians 3:17 NKJV)

When I’m talking about our practice as worship, please don’t jump to the conclusion that I am talking about practice for worship—as in the band getting together to work on their chords or the choir rehearsal.  That is all well and good, but I’m talking about putting into practice what is preached.  The greatest expression of worship is not tossing a few dollars into the offering or singing several choruses, but the giving of our total being in delightful devotion to God every day of the week.

In many ways such an individual consecration readies one for joining other devotees in a combustible explosion of corporate worship on the Lord’s Day in God’s House.  Get a group together like that and there will be an ignition of praise!  But, not only does it culminate this way, it launches us into another week of commitment to Christ.  A renewed mind reinforced by the Word of God on Sunday, leads to my all on the altar on Monday!

Paul out it like this in Romans 12:1-2:

I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.  Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. (ESV)

The real proof of whether we have met with God is what happens when we leave.  It doesn’t matter how high your jump, it’s how straight you walk when you hit the ground!  Feelings are like the tides that ebb and flow.  Commitment stays solid.   We may or may not have our hearts soar into the stratosphere of exultation on Sunday, but we can always leave the sanctuary zealous for serving Christ.  We haven’t worshipped until we do.

The acid test of a worship encounter with God is that, “whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.” (Colossians 3:17 NKJV)  It is a simple template to remember, yet a most profound one to flesh out.  If I have honored the Name of Jesus and professed Him as Lord on Sunday, shouldn’t I demonstrate that during the week by what I say and do?  If I have actually expressed gratitude on the first day of the week, will I not be thankful on the other six days?  This is a daily surrender on the altar of all we are—in conduct and conversation to exalt the Savior.  There’s hope for the church where members live like that!

Friday, February 07, 2014


“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.” (Colossians 3:16 NKJV)

Some church folks apparently think that the mere act of attending a church service is an end in itself.  They think of worship as a spectator sport where they occupy the stands as fans and cheer (or boo) the performersthe preacher and singersand hopefully leave entertained.  While I am thankful for those who show upthat only involves potentiality for worship.  What is needed is participation in worship!

This is a privilege and a preceptnot an optional part of the Christian life.  It is not a choice; it is a command.  Since worship will be the order of eternity, if we do not desire to worship now perhaps we ought to skip heavenwe wont like it!  Worship is what the saints do up there!  We are training for that exciting prospector we should be.

You might argue, The services Ive been in seemed more like the infernal than the inspirational.  Then, it wasnt worship.  There is an order of worship that is properthe only acceptable kind to God which Jesus described as, in spirit and truth (John 4:24). 

There is the objective element of truth, “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs…” where in sermon and song the truth is to be paramount.

Then, we have the subjective experience of the spirit, “psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.”  We engage both the head and the heart.

I love the Berkley translation of Colossians 3:16a, Let the enriching message of Christ have ample room in your lives.   Are we seriously giving the Lord plenty of space to speak to us on Sunday mornings?  Or does what we cram in there on Monday through Saturday close the door of our thoughts to a Word from God?   We must beware minds cluttered by distraction or hearts choked by disobedience.

The wisdom of God is available in the Word of God.  Dont impoverish your soul!  We need both instruction on what to do and admonition about what not to do.  If we are always told about what we ought to do and not the way to do it (teaching), we become legalists, but if we are never told there are things we shouldnt do (admonishing), we become liberals.  I dont want to be either!

Then, there is the vital expression of worship through our music.  If we are looking for music to please our preferences then we are misguided.  Music is to praise our God in psalms and hymns and to edify our brothers in spiritual songs that impart grace.

Too often we get bent out of shape about music style.  The substance is most crucialnot the style!  The text is more important than the tune.  Its not about the melody that entertains, but the message that edifies.

So you ought to participate in the musiceven if you cant carry a tune in a bucket!  You can make melody in your heart!  Mouth and meditate on the message even if you are a monotone. 

I cant help but sing.  Last Sunday I was hoarse from sicknessand reason told me to restrain my singing to save my voice for the sermon.  But, I couldnt help myself.  There was a song inside that demanded to be let outand the next thing you know I was belting it out!  Nobody is going to vote for me on American Idol and offer me a recording contractbut, I believe God enjoyed it!  And, after all, it is about Him!

This Sunday, dont be an absentee from the serviceand dont be apathetic in the service.  Your attitude will make the sermon and songs seem better.  The proper focus on blessing God will bless those around youand you will find an amazing thingyou will be blessed also!

Thursday, February 06, 2014


Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do.  ‎But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection.  ‎And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to which also you were called in one body; and be thankful.” (Colossians 3:12-15 NKJV)

This is what we need to put on as we go to church.  These are attitudes of the heart that prepare us to meet with God corporately. 

Therefore…” based on who we are in Christ (v.1-11): risen with Him, dead to the old lifea brand new creation, we are to be transformed in our entire beingthe clearest evidence being our attitudes toward others.  This is befitting a child of God, chosen out of the world by the Fathers love, as the elect of God, holy and beloved.

Before you come to the worship service make sure you, put on tender mercies.  Jesus said, Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy. We need to cut each other some slack.  I desperately need mercy from God, and appreciate it from others, so I can only have it if I share it!

Put onkindness.  More important than putting on hairspray or cosmetics, put on a kind face.  Charles Stanley, Pastor of First Baptist Church Atlanta has had a global outreach through In Touch Ministries.  But do you know what greatly influenced his life?  More than anything that he was taught, he had a Sunday School teacher he recalls was so kind to a group of boys.  Sometimes a little means a lot!

Put onhumility.  The proud church member wants the spotlight on them, but the humble want it on God.  Do you come to worship seeking pats on the back instead of offering praises to God?

Put onmeekness.  The meek are not demanding, insisting on his or her way.  They are eager to compromise preferences where no principle is involved.  Wouldnt that stop a lot of church fights?

Put onlongsuffering; bearing with one another.  The longsuffering are patient with people and not bitter toward God.  The reality is that some folks in the church are rather easy to loveand some you just have to put up withbut God does so with us, and we must bear with others.

Those ready for worship are forgiving (v.13).  You cant offer acceptable worship otherwiseJesus said to leave your gift at the altar and be reconciled to your brother.  It is hard to sit on a pew and worship God with someone with whom you are mad. 

Love is the belt that holds your ensemble together (v.14).  Dont leave home without it!

Then there will be peace inside us that leads to unity in the Body.  Hearts in harmony with Gods commands lead to a congregation in harmony with each other. 

Well have a thankful spirit.  Thats a well-dressed Christian!  If you want to come to church to critique what goes on instead of looking to express worship and extend love, you certainly are going to be able to find fault for even at our best there will be some at their worst.

Its really a choice.  Did you hear about the grumpy looking fellow who with gruff voice came into the seafood restaurant and asked the waitress, Do you serve crabs?   Her answer was, Oh yes sir, well serve anybody!  And we will do so at the churchweve been doing in for 2,000 years.

Make sure you are preparing your heart for worship and that when you come to church this Sunday morningbe a well-dressed Christian!  Then well all be thankful.