Archive for February, 2014

“Why Not You?”

February 10, 2014

Image

 

On Sunday, February 2, history was made during the 48th Super Bowl match-up between the Denver Broncos and the Seattle Seahawks.  The Seahawks 43 to 8 dismantling of the Broncos was the most watched event – with 111.5 million people — in US history.

Although neither the game nor the commercials were very exciting, there was a young-man at the center of the game who was simply outstanding.  This young-man is Russell Wilson, the 25 year-old second-year quarterback of the Seattle Seahawks.  Although several other players including the Denver Broncos’ Peyton Manning grabbed the lime light, it was Russell Wilson who outshone them all.  Wilson played a flawless game and became only the second African American quarterback in history, following Doug Williams of the Redskins, to win the Super Bowl. 

Most importantly, what you need to know about Russell Wilson is that he is a child of God who has sought to glorify God in all that he says and does on and off the field.  Indeed, during his Super Bowl victory speech Wilson said “First of all, God is so good. He brought me here a mighty long way.”

Furthermore, Wilson attended church before he played in his Super Bowl game and tweeted Matthew 6:33 (NIV), “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.”  I love this.  You want to prepare for the big game or any other major life-event? Then seek God and attend church!

The inspiration for Wilson’s stellar performance was his Dad. Russell said of his late Father, “My dad used to always tell me, ‘Russ, why not you?’ And what that meant was believe in yourself, believe in the talent God has given you even though you are 5 foot 11, and you can go a long way.” Wilson used his Dad’s comments to inspire his entire team and they adopted the mantra “Why Not Us?”, and we should adopt that mantra as well.

Why Not Us? Why shouldn’t we be the ones to shine and excel for God and win the Championship? Why shouldn’t we be the ones to get our acts together?  Why shouldn’t we be the ones who God uses to accomplish his great things for Him? Why shouldn’t we be the ones who go the extra-mile and persevere under great trials and tribulations?  Why No You? Why Not Me? Why Not Us?!

Peace and Blessings, Pastor Kip Banks, Sr.

 

Advertisements

“Their Eyes Were Watching God”

February 10, 2014

Image

While attending PNBC’s Midwinter Session in Orlando, I had the opportunity to visit a church in Eatonville, Florida.  Eatonville is one of the nation’s oldest African American municipalities and the home of famed Harlem renaissance writer Zora Neale Hurston.

Hurston brought attention to the historic role that Eatonville played in uplifting African American people in her heralded novel “Their Eyes Were Watching God.” The novel was written during a time a great persecution of African American people including racism, lynching and economic injustice, but the people of Eatonville were able to make it because “their eyes were watching God.”

In much the same way, we live in troubled times, a time of growing inequality and poverty, a time of global warming and disruptive climate patterns – it’s too cold! — and a time when gun violence has skyrocketed out of control and too many of our young people die senseless deaths.  To deal with these and many other pressing issues, we must be like the historic people of Eatonville and fix our eyes on God!

Indeed, David said, “One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to inquire in his temple” (Psalm 27:4).  This is the purpose for the Progressive National Baptist Convention — to help us fix our eyes and hearts on God.

If we keep our eyes and hearts fixated on God, then we’ll be able like David to say “the Lord is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear” (Psalm 27:1) and ultimately we’ll be able to “Wait on the Lord and to be of good courage because indeed he will strengthen our hearts.”

 Peace and Blessings, Kip B. Banks, Sr.