Phil Us Up!
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August 25, 2015, 1:25 PM

Back to School!


    It is a familiar feeling of excitement! We are back in school, either as teachers, coaches or students! 

     Summer break is done; I just wish the summer weather was too! I keep telling Maikel, (our new family member from Amsterdam) soon the heat will be over.

     I come from a family of teachers; my oldest brother, twin sister, dad, mom, mother-in-law and my wife are or were all teachers. Now my son, Paul is one. I suppose this is one reason I have respect for teachers. I remember a time when that was not true!

     Teachers were good topics to discuss and laugh about with friends. They were something to be avoided when I was breaking the rules! They were objects of resentment when they gave me too much homework! I remember many of the unkind comments many of us gave our teachers.

     After growing up, and getting to know so many teachers, I think I understand them better than I used to. I no longer think of them as dictators and tyrants. Admittedly, to some teaching is only a job, but to most it’s a job in which they can help students in the best way they know how. Teachers are some of the most dedicated people I know. I’m sure many times they don’t feel like grading papers any more than I felt like writing them, but they do it, even if I didn’t appreciate it.

     I love to tell the story of running into one of my high school teachers not long after I moved to Haskell! I saw her waiting at the gate out at the Rolling Plains Detention Unit. I knew she looked familiar, but who. I hate that feeling of knowing someone but not knowing who they are. As I got closer, she recognized me first, and then I knew, Ruth Lambert Jackson, my old high school art teacher. No she wasn’t an inmate waiting to be released, although I like to tell the story of running into a high school teacher of mine out at the prison. She is still teaching, and I know it’s the most important thing she has ever taught. Teachers deserve more praise than is given to them. Thank you Mrs. Lambert for all that you taught me, and are still teaching.

1Thessolonians  5:13

            Hold them in the highest regard in love because of their work     

     I give thanks to God for all the teachers I have had in my life. Where would I be without them? I don’t even want to think about that!

Philip

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August 18, 2015, 12:00 AM

Shiloh


  I got up early Saturday morning and drove east on Interstate 30. It was a fast trip, and a long day, to attend a 50th wedding anniversary reception. My Dad’s only sister, Elizabeth has been married to my uncle Gerald for 50 years. I spent a lot of time as a teenager in Texarkana with my Aunt and Uncle. I congratulate them. The averages say, only one in twenty marriages will last for 50 years.  On top of that, I know there were some tough times for my aunt and uncle, which included losing their only son, Michael in a fatal car wreck December 21, 1993. I am humbled by their commitment, to their commitment.

    I took the opportunity to visit Shiloh Cemetery, east of town on Hwy 82. My grandparents are buried there. It is a small cemetery attached to Shiloh Baptist Church. I walked around and realized there are lots of Sims buried here, 36 in all. I found only one that misspelled Sims, (two m’s).

     In a real way I feel an attachment to that little cemetery. I can’t help but think and wonder about the influence my grandparents had on me.

     In Jeremiah 7 God calls on His people to remember what He did there. Shiloh was the place God set up, as a gift to Israel, the symbol of His authority. It was originally to be a place where Israel could stand before God, find forgiveness and instruction, a place of peace.

     Shiloh is also believed to be a name for the coming Messiah.  It means “he is who is to be sent”. We recognize that as Jesus, the one who brings the offer of peace to all men.

     It draws an interesting picture for me, Shiloh. First and most important, it tells me of the arrival of the One who would offer salvation to all men everywhere, a person. The fulfillment of a promise made long ago.

     Second, it’s the name of a place. God, through Jeremiah warns us about making sure our faith is in the person, not the place.

     So, I went to Shiloh last Saturday. I remembered what God did there a long time ago. His people had put their faith in that place. I also thought, not only about what God did there, but because of the Person, what God will someday do, right here just east of Texarkana on hwy 82. Papa, and Grandma will live again.!

     I hear all the time how important location, location, location, is. I hope we understand, He is so much more important. Remember what God did, and then, believe what someday He will do. “We are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.”

Come on, let’s go to Shiloh.

Philip Sims (with one m)



Comments

09-05-2015 at 3:33 PM
Bobby Sims
I was moved by this bulletin article. I am so proud of Philip and his commitment to the Good News that Christ came not to condemn the world, but to save the world.
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June 30, 2015, 4:55 PM

Maybe they're on to something.


     There have been many times in my life I wish I could communicate my thoughts in a better more loving way. It happened Sunday, and I’m sure it will happen again! (Sometimes I feel like Phil Robertson, LOL, see 1/7/2014)     

     God’s word is clear about many things; sexual sin, both homosexual and heterosexual, are some of those things that I think we understand. Many places in scripture we read easy to understand instructions on what God expects of His people. What is not so easy for me, is how God wants me to react to those on the outside who commit those sins.

     I know many of us, to put it mildly, are disappointed with the recent Supreme Court ruling on homosexual marriage. Let me be the first to say, no matter what the Supreme Court says, they cannot change God’s definition of a Biblical marriage. They don’t have that power and never will.   What they do have the power to do is to change the laws of our land.

     God calls us to follow His word and His commandments. Jesus often spoke about the greatest commandment. In Matthew we find this, One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: "Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?" Jesus replied: "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."

     We know those words so well; it’s one of those passages we all have memorized! The question I always need to have answered is this, how do I Love the Lord my God with my heart, soul, and mind. Well, Jesus answers that question as well. "If you love me, you will obey what I command.”

     Jesus says, we show OUR love by keeping His commandments, US keeping His commandments. It’s way too easy for me to look at others, especially those who have committed terrible sins and forget, God and Jesus command me to treat them with love and respect. I know I have a long history of not doing that exact thing, and then condemning them for their sin.

     Paul writes in Romans some instructions I really need. If you start in 1:20 and read to the end of the chapter he describes our world almost perfectly! A rather long and complete list of terrible sins, some of which I have committed! Then in chapter 2 Paul tells us how we are not to act. Why? Well first he says it’s God’s business to judge them, and secondly I will not escape because I am no better than they are. It is easy to forget how forgiving God has been to me. Listen to Paul in 2:20 “…do you show contempt for the riches of his kindness, tolerance and patience, not realizing that God's kindness leads you toward repentance?” I heard this yesterday and I quote my brother; If, when you think, read or hear the word sinner and you don’t think of yourself first, that’s a problem. If, when your think, read or hear the word love and think, “yeah but….” That’s probably what caused the first problem.

   Kindness, tolerance, patience are the only ways we can fulfill the second commandment like the first. Not because I condone anyone’s sinfulness, especially my OWN, but I hope with love and respect to demonstrate God’s kindness I experience daily, which leads to repentance. 

     Maybe Jesus and Paul are on to something here. I love you all!                        Philip



Comments

09-05-2015 at 3:38 PM
Bobby Sims
A truly difficult topic. However, isn't it true that our first responsibilty is to recognize our own sins and our own need of a saviour?
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June 9, 2015, 12:00 AM

What's happening today in Nepal?


      I am always glad to get home after a long trip. It is especially good to be home after what I saw and experienced in Nepal. I knew things were bad, but it still took my breath away to see it with my own eyes. The suffering and pain now has names and faces  I know and recognize. Before I started home I sat down with Danny and Ben, we talked about things we would take away from our trip. The first thing for me is, I have a greater understanding how many things we Americans take for granted. Simple things like, water, the air we breathe, the homes we live in, we just assume are going to be there. I need to be thankful for things I usually take for granted. ...........That’s happening today in Nepal.

    I believe with all my heart we did some very good things there. Safe water is such a blessing; to be able to drink and not worry if what I am drinking is going to make me, at best sick, and at worse kill me is a good thing. ...........That’s happening today in Nepal.

     It’s humbling and embarrassing to think about the things I regularly complain about, when I saw what they are experiencing in Nepal. I never heard anyone there complain about ANYTHING. What I did see was joy. The promise of safe water to drink, to cook with, was cause for celebration. I wonder, when was the last time I celebrated safe water? ..............That’s happening today in Nepal.

     The relationships that were born of God through our common love for Jesus and His Kingdom will last forever. I pray every day for Madan Shah, our Christian brother living in Nepal, and Ben Gray, still serving there. To watch God work through these men while I was there makes my heart soar, and it continues today. The work that was done and is being done brings praise to God. In the Bhaktpur health clinic, a man of the Hindu faith said to me, “I praise your God for this water”. Praises to God, from men of another faith?  Maybe that’s the greatest thing that happened while we were there, and............ that’s happening today in Nepal.

     I am so very grateful for the opportunity given to me by Global Samaritan to go and see what happened in Nepal, and what’s happening in Nepal. I am so thankful to be a part of God’s family here in Haskell. The financial gift to go is a wonderful praise to God. I cannot thank you all enough.

     Jesus said one time; I tell you the truth, anyone who gives you a cup of water in my name because you belong to Christ will certainly not lose his reward.  Because of you and many others............... that’s happening today in Nepal.

To God be the glory. I love you all

Philip

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May 28, 2015, 2:08 PM

Water In His Name


If someone said to you: “My God does great and unsearchable things; He does wonders without number.” How would you respond? Really, like what?  I read a verse recently from Job. That’s exactly what Job says, and then he adds, He gives rain on the earth, and sends water on the fields. Today I want to think like Job did. In his mind rain is really one of the great unsearchable things God does.

I did a little research because I wonder if we all understand what God does when it rains like it did yesterday. I looked at the radar it was raining from Mexico to Iowa! Here is what I found out. If one inch of rain falls on one square mile of land it is 27,878,400 cubic feet of water, which is 206,300,160 gallons, which is 1,650,501,280 pounds of water. Now that’s heavy and it rained inches and inches in Haskell! How does that much water get up in the sky? Well that is by evaporation, well what does that mean. Well water stops being liquid water for a while so it can go up and not down. It then turns back to liquid so it can come back down. The whole process has a lot of steps I grew tired of trying to understand like condensation, coalescence, etc.

            I think I will just look at rain like Job did.  "But as for me, I would seek God, and I would place my cause before God; Who does great and unsearchable things, wonders without number. “He gives rain on the earth, and sends water on the fields. This week I will place my concerns before our God, who does great things, like make it rain.

     This week as I prepare to make way to Nepal, I am humbled by what the Haskell Church has done…………again. Leigh and I have been a part of this family for nearly 8 years, and again I am humbled by the gift of this church, to do something that will make a real difference in people’s lives.  I ask you to continue to offer up prayers for this effort. My God does great and unsearchable things; He does wonders without number.

I love you all

Philip


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