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“[We are] hard pressed on every side, yet not crushed; [we are] perplexed, but not in despair;” (2Co 4:8 NKJV)

“...We all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord.” (2Co 3:18 NKJV)

“Behold, I am coming quickly! Hold fast what you have, that no one may take your crown.” (Re 3:11 NKJV)

I write this column  with a measure of sadness as it represents the ending of an era that began 25 years ago with the vision of Editor Bob Dill in founding and publishing of a local paper, which values the community, stands for conservative principles and has no shame in honoring God.  It has been my privilege to write a column for this publication for almost all of its published existence.  I wish to thank Bob and all his staff who have done a great service to our community in the publishing of The Times Examiner.

Now change is necessary and The Times Examiner will appear online as of July and I trust all of us will still have the privilege to be informed, encouraged and even challenged by its online publication.

Change is also necessary for myself. This June will complete for me 50 years of pastoral ministry. I have attempted to serve the Lord and His people in three different ministries over those years in the State of Kentucky and for the last 30 blessed years in the great state of South Carolina among the loving and gracious people of Greenville County. I wish to thank each of you who have considered my thoughts each week.  Some have agreed with my thoughts, while others have challenged but all have been gracious.

This will be my last column as I will retire from the pastorate of Summit View Baptist Church as of June 30th .

The Bible verses cited remind us that we live in a world that attempts to “squeeze us into its mold” (Rom. 12:2 Philips) making us feel as if we are crushed from every side.

We are however not to be perplexed or despair.  Our view ought to be upward and forward.  For now we look upward unto Him who is the Author and Finisher of our Faith (Heb. 12:2). Beyond that we look forward for things which will not always be the way they are. Christ is coming and He will provide a crown for those who remain faithful. (I Cor. 4:2)

“He who testifies to these things says, ‘Surely I am coming quickly.’ Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus!” (Re 22:20 NKJV)

That’s the way we view things.

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Summit View Baptist Church is located at 31 N. Highway 25 Bypass, just south of Furman University’s golf course.

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