Last night I heard the news the Rev. Dr. Tim Keller was entering hospice. I spent part of the evening thinking of how this pastor has affected my life.

Moments ago on social media I saw this post:

It has been an up and down medical journey for Dr. Keller since he shared his cancer diagnosis. Now he rests in the Savior’s arms.

Like his life, it appears his death was a way for him to share his faith and model a Christian life.

Recently, I was blessed by his book Jonah: The Prodigal Prophet as I preached through the book of Jonah. In seminary Center Church was required reading. It impacted how I view the church and gospel in regards to the way they affect the city. My wife and I have the Meaning of Marriage Couples Devotional. While commuting to seminary I listened to a whole class of lectures on the now defunct iTunes University called Preaching Christ in a Postmodern World where he taught about his preaching method.

His New York Times Article Am I a Christian, Pastor Timothy Keller? with skeptic Nicholas Kristof is one of my favorite articles. I even quoted it in an article about the Future of Methodism.

In line with his brilliant mind and clear writing was his attitude. I always appreciated how winsome he was for the lost in New York City (and the wider world) without compromising Christianity. He was not afraid to talk about the tensions in faith for thinking Christians. He would have open microphone question and answer session on Sunday nights at his church in New York City for whoever wanted to attend. I never heard him get angry or talk down to anyone.

Christ has blessed me greatly through Dr. Keller’s work. I look forward to continued mentoring from Dr. Keller from his published work.

Over the next few days I will continue to pray for the Family of Tim Keller.

I will also thank God because I am a better Pastor and Christian because of Tim Keller.

One of my passions has been writing about the future of Methodism. Methodists all over Georgia are sensing God’s leading and moving forward. Here is a sample of a few beautiful snapshots of where Methodists are heading after church disaffiliation votes in the past year. These are all happening around my area of ministry.

New Church Groups Starting Up

In Savannah, after a majority vote did not reach the required 2/3rds majority hundreds of Methodists planted a new church on Isle of Hope in Savannah, GA. The new church is called Good Shepherd of Savannah. 

Rev. Scott Tucker will be the lead pastor of Good Shepherd of Savannah. Rev. Sam Paul has joined the team to lead worship and youth ministries. The church is temporarily meeting at Isle of Hope Baptist Church (22 Rose Ave., Savannah, GA). 

Lindsay Paul with Rev. Samuel Paul. Photo from Samuel Paul’s Facebook page.

The pastor’s shared about their excitement in recent church social media posts. Rev. Scott Tucker said, “I believe Good Shepherd Savannah will serve our city with the kindness and the truth of God’s healing work in Jesus Christ.”

Rev. Sam Paul in his church staff highlight social media post said, “I have loved every minute of leading the band and singing songs to our Lord, and I have especially loved the chance to work with students and watch them grow in their faith. I never would have imagined this opportunity to help build a new church plant, and I can’t wait to see where God takes us!”

The church plant is aligned with the Global Methodist Church (GMC). See Good Shepherd’s Savannah’s website for the most up to date meeting locations and times.

In Statesboro, a group consisting of hundreds of Methodists have been meeting together after another majority vote did not meet the required supermajority. Under the leadership of a board of thirteen members they have been organizing speakers as they continue to worship together.

Photo of the Statesboro Worship Easter Service via the Friends of GMC Facebook Group

“We just want to keep everyone together” says Warren Ball, a member of the new communities leadership board. 

Statesboro Worship is the name of the Christian group. They are meeting at the Home Builders Association of Statesboro in the Market District (1223 Merchants Wy, Statesboro, GA 30458). They meet at 9:00 a.m.

The Statesboro group is discerning where they want to align. The majority of the group want to remain Methodist or in the Wesleyan stream. However, they are still discerning what this may look like moving forward.

Local churches are aligning with the Global Methodist Church

Rev. Paul Broussard aligned quickly with the Global Methodist church. His church, Bethesda Church (Guyton, GA), took more time to discern where they wanted to realign moving forward

Rev. Paul Broussard from Paul Broussard’s facebook page.

“Back when I returned to the Methodist church I knew then I wanted to align with the Global Methodist Church. It just felt right. Reading the Transitional Book of Doctrine and Disciplines. I just felt deep in my Spirit that the Global Methodist Church will usher in a new great move of God,” Paul said.

His church leadership voted recently to move forward with a church wide vote about joining the Global Methodist Church. 

Paul added, “The transition team of Bethesda went through the Transitional Book of Doctrine and Disciplines. [They] loved the conservative and traditional Wesleyan heritage. Another plus was the fact that the GMC wants the churches to begin to govern themselves more…”

Another local Methodist Church in Twin City, GA decided to align with the GMC even though that meant they would lose their pastor.

Church member Sybil Johnson talked about the Twin City Methodist Church’s decisions.

“I attended the Isaiah 43 Conference [the first gathering of the South Georgia Global Methodist Church] at Epworth by the Sea in October last year. It was a revival of blessings! I felt the presence of the Lord with us! His spirit was moving around us and within us.”

While Sybil had a great experience at the conference she elaborated on why she personally leaned to the GMC. “My faith is rooted with the John Wesley traditional teachings and beliefs. So is Global! So thankful for Global Methodist coming to our rescue!”

They are looking forward to their new minister being appointed by the GMC this summer.

The South Georgia Conference convening session is July 27th – 29th

The South Georgia Conference of the Global Methodist Church (SGAGMC) will hold it’s convening session from Thursday, July 27th to Saturday, July 29th. As of this article publishing, the SGAGMC has 99 clergy aligned or in the process of joining the conference. There are currently 92 churches aligned on in the process of joining. This list will continue to grow.

Epworth by the Sea is a historical place for Methodism. Charles and John Wesley both lived on St. Simons briefly. Epworth by the Sea also holds the Bishop Moore Methodist Museum.

During this historic conference there will conclude with an ordination service presided over by Bishop Scott Jones.

The SGA GMC is led by President Pro Tem Rev. Jay Hanson. Reflecting on the upcoming momentus conference he said, “As Methodist we are a called people, a holy priest hood, who have historically encountered and responded to God in special ways at Epworth by the sea on St. Simons Island. This is sacred soil for us.  As Methodist from across Georgia gather on July 27-29 for our First GMC Annual Conference at Epworth I have  deep sense that we may again experience a fresh move of God which enables us to worship passionately, love extravagantly, and witness boldly.”

Other speakers will be announced soon. For the latest on the convening conference session including registration, speakers, and schedule, visit the SGAGMC Annual Conference website.  

While this is just a small picture of what is happening in my area, I am curious. Do you know of a Methodist story that needs to be told? Reach out to me and let me know.

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This is my sermon from Easter Sunday, April 9th, 2023


There are some very high and holy moments as a preacher. Ash Wednesday, Christmas Eve, and Easter Sunday. You want to make sure you get every word just right. You do not want to waste a single moment.

So I would like to take a moment and tell you about some scientific views of the Tyrannosaurus that have changed recently. A recent article from the AP was titled Has T. rex lost its bite? Menacing snarl may be wrong.

“The Tyrannosaurus rex is often shown baring massive, sharp teeth, like the ferocious creature in “Jurassic Park.” But new research suggests that this classic image might be wrong.

The teeth on T. rex and other big theropods were likely covered by scaly lips, concludes a study published Thursday in the journal Science. The dinosaur’s teeth didn’t stick out when its mouth was closed, and even in a wide open bite, you might just see the tips, the scientists found.”

As a child who was traumatized by seeing Jurassic Park as a kindergartener, this is really big news. There was one major flaw though. The science was done by a professor at Auburn University in Alabama…

Now, I do not know what this has to do with the sermon. I just wanted you to know about this development.

Why Does the Resurrection Still Matter?

Today, I want us to ask, why does the resurrection still matter today? We heard the Easter story read at the beginning of the service. What happened 2,000 years ago was beautiful, remarkable, and shocking. But what does it matter for Christians today? Is it about nice pictures, egg hunts, or pictures?

The early church was working this out also. One of the leaders of the early church was the Apostle Paul. If you were to do a poll of the followers of Christ asking, “Who is the least likely to convert to Christianity?” I would argue Paul would win it hands down. Even after hearing about Christ’s resurrection Paul went around trying to murder Christians and stop Christianity. But God, in His grace, saves Paul. And Paul becomes a leader, defender, and champion of the church. 

As part of Paul’s ministry he wrote letters to church to encourage them.

Today, we are going to look at one portion of a letter where Paul is discussing why the resurrection still matters.

We are going to look at selections of this argument in 1 Corinthians 15 (3-8, 12-14, 51-57)

3 For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, 5 and that he appeared to Cephas, and then to the Twelve. 6 After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers and sisters at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep. 7 Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles, 8 and last of all he appeared to me also, as to one abnormally born.

2 But if it is preached that Christ has been raised from the dead, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? 13 If there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. 14 And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith.

50 I declare to you, brothers and sisters, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God, nor does the perishable inherit the imperishable. 51 Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed— 52 in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. 53 For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality. 54 When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.”

55 “Where, O death, is your victory?

    Where, O death, is your sting?”

56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

58 Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.

Death Still Has a Sting

The end of the passage here is usually read at funerals. Death, where is your sting? Paul is most likely remixing a passage from Habakkuk. And let’s be honest. Death still has a bit of a sting for all of us. 

Pastor Rick Warren, in the Purpose Driven Life, talks about this:

You have an inborn instinct that songs for immortality. This is because God designed you, in his image, to live for eternity. Even though we know everyone eventually dies, death always seems unnatural and unfair. The reason we feel we should live forever is that God wired our brains with that desire.

Most of us do not want to die or look forward or look forward to the dying process. All of us love to hear we look younger or haven’t aged. Yet, everything in this life is wearing down and dying. That feeling of dread of dying is from God because we are made to last forever.

The good news is that Jesus’ death on the cross and his power over death show us we can enjoy God forever! As one theologian says, “To Christians death is still an enemy, but it is a beaten enemy.”

It is Easy to Forget This

For believers we celebrate this on Easter… yet we also need to remember this each and every day.

One of my favorite stories from a former church was about one of the young ladies in the church as a child. After Easter she enjoyed all her eggs. Her mistake was she left one of her boiled eggs in her bedroom and forgot about it. Several weeks later her mother made the stinky discovery… the forgotten egg made a rotten mess.

This is what happens when we forget… we can make a rotten mess of our lives when we forget what God has done for us. I can make a rotten mess of my own life when I forget what God has done. 


O.k. preacher, how can I remember this? How can I live as someone walking in God’s grace?

The first step is to accept Jesus as Lord and Savior. It is a simple and easy process to start. It is a beautiful journey for the rest of your life. Romans 10:9 says: If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 

If you would like to make that decision today, nothing could make me happier. You may also need to rededicate your life to God. You may have made that decision long ago but have not lived like that… today you can reconnect with God.

My other challenge is to consider the rhythms of your life. Having a regular rhythm of scripture reading, devotions, and church are helpful.

We would love for you to come back next week for the start of the Video Game Fever series or mark your calendar for vacation Bible school.


Friends, today is a day of Good News. Christ the Lord is Risen. As Paul says, “Our Labor is not in vain.” Death is an enemy. Still scary, yes. But you have a God who loves you and cares deeply for you. That will be with you even in your death…

Death is a lot like a T-Rex… it is very menacing. I would never want to encounter one… but maybe a T-rex is not as scary as we once thought.

Happy Easter.