Live Life Simply

For many years, Nancy and I have had a plaque hanging in our home that says, “Live Life Simply.” During the decades before we purchased the plaque, we practiced what it preaches. Our marriage and our home have been intentionally simple for over forty-two years. While we have maintained a very fulfilling home, we have not overscheduled ourselves to the point that we have no time for God or one another.

Simple does not mean boring or useless. We have always used our home as a place to build and strengthen relationships around the table and in the living room. Nancy prepares wonderful meals, and we enjoy sharing them with others. The relationships we form with others enrich our lives. Ministry does take place on the weekends and after hours over the phone and through necessary visits. Still, we have been able to live life simply.

We aim at one target. We continue to trust that Jesus will fulfill the promise He made in Matthew 6:33. If we seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, everything we need will be added unto us. Jesus handles the details of our lives when we prioritize His kingdom and our relationship with Him. As we seek Him first, not second, He makes sure that we are given shelter, food, fulfillment, hope, purpose, transportation, joy, relationships, health, and everything else that is necessary for an abundant life in this world.

We count our blessings specifically and often. As we list what we are grateful for, we are reminded of God’s goodness and grace. We consider ourselves greatly blessed because of what God has provided for us. We do ask for God’s merciful intervention. However, we do more thanking than asking. Our gratitude for what we do have, keeps us from longing for what we do not have.

We face life together as one. Nancy and I became one when we covenanted before God to be husband and wife. We discuss and plan and act in this world as one. The fact that we share our lives simplifies our lives by making possible our assistance of one another. We encourage and help one another as we journey through life. Our partnership in life simplifies our lives. We accept that we cannot “have it all” in this world. That’s just fine, as long as we have Jesus and one another.

Live life simply, Earl


FBC Happenings


  • This Sundays Sermon “Barnabas and John Mark” Acts 15:36-41
  • Family Worship and LifeGroups, Sundays at 9:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.
  • Services are being posted on the church website, the church YouTube channel at FBC Weatherford Media, and on the church Facebook page at 9:00 a.m. each Sunday.

Happy Mother’s Day

Mothers can encourage their children to be and do their best. I still remember when I returned from college to speak at the “Sweetheart Banquet” held in the youth department of the Washington Street Baptist Church in Hobart. My mother was one of the cooks for the event. I wore a three-pieced suit, and parted my hair down the middle. After all was said and done, my mother said to me, “You are a really good preacher.” Decades later I remember her encouraging words. She had as much to do with my development as a pastor as my seminary training. She encouraged me.

Mothers can emphasize the innate value of their children. When we visit our son, I always make a point to sit in the old lazy boy that I inherited from my Pa-pa and passed down to Jason. I like to remember Pa-pa sitting in the chair eating dried beef from a small jar while watching television in their very small den. We come from the generations that have gone before us. For multiplied years, when I sit in the chair at Jason’s, I have seen the yellow sticky note Nancy wrote to him that said simply, “I always enjoy spending time with you.” Jason has achieved much in life. He has many trophies and degrees stored throughout his home. He values no trophy more than the sticky note left by Nancy.

Mothers can make their children feel secure and loved at all times. Nancy and I have been grandparents for over a year. We have watched Lynn provide every need Erin has to feel secure and loved. Lynn regularly feeds Erin nutritious meals that are necessary to remain healthy. Lynn plays with Erin and takes her on walks and swings her. Erin joyfully approves of the recreational opportunities. Lynn makes sure that Erin remains clean, gets plenty of sleep, and enjoys plenty of books. She sets up Facetime for Erin to visit with Mimi and Poppy. Nancy and I have often commented about what a good mother Lynn has become.

Mothers can point their children to Jesus. As they spend time with Jesus and sing and read about Jesus, they create a desire within their children to know the Savior their mother loves so much. I am not discounting Daddy, myself or Michael. I am just magnifying Mama, Nancy and Lynn. We are greatly blessed when God provides us with exceptional mothers.

Happy Mother’s Day! Earl


FBC Happenings

  • This Sundays Sermon “Elizabeth and Mary” Luke 1:39-47; 56
  • Family Worship and LifeGroups, Sundays at 9:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.
  • TeamKIDS – Wednesdays from 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. for Bed Babies – 6th grade
  • The Gathering – Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m. in the Sanctuary; live streamed on Facebook at 6:30 p.m., also available on the website at: http://www.fbcweatherford.com by noon on Thursday
  • Services are being posted on the church website, the church YouTube channel at FBC Weatherford Media, and on the church Facebook page at 9:00 a.m. each Sunday.

New Members

Jaxon Fredendall Veda Tull

Staff Updates

The Personnel Committee has hired Mikylin York as the full-time Assistant Minister of University and Youth. Mikylin has been serving part time as University intern for the past two years. Now that she is graduating, and marrying Braden Sweet, she is becoming a full-time employee. Though hers is not a called staff position, Mikylin will continue to play an extremely significant role in our church as we move forward. 

Mikylin has proven herself to be extremely creative, organized, energetic, and genuine. She walks with the Lord daily and serves Him humbly. God has used her mightily in the growth of the ministry to university students here at FBC. She has served in multiple roles while making disciples for the glory of God. I am thrilled that Mikylin is willing and available to continue serving here at FBC.

Her expanded role will allow her to assist with youth and university ministry. The slowest time of the year for university ministry is the summer, which is the busiest time of the year for youth ministry. She will have plenty to do as she serves alongside the rest of the staff in making disciples. She will continue to serve with excellence, as she has for the past two years. We are blessed to have her and Braden. They will marry in July.

We will be forming a search committee for the Associate Minister of University and Discipleship on May 16th. This is a full-time called staff position. Each member of FBC will be able to list up to five members of the church to serve on the search committee. A committee of five will be formed from those who receive the most recommendations and consent to serve. If you can’t be present on May 16, you can turn in your recommendations early to the church office. Let God lead you as you form your list.

The search committee for the Associate Minister of Children and Families continues to seek God’s person for this full-time staff position. Remember them in your prayers. If you have ever served on a search committee, you know that it is a very significant and extremely challenging task. Meanwhile, I remain thankful to God for Allison Kendall and Tamra Misak. They have done awesome jobs as we have moved forward while short on staff.

Onward and upward! Earl


FBC Happenings


  • This Sundays Sermon “Jesus and the Twelve” Mark 3:13-19
  • Family Worship and LifeGroups, Sundays at 9:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.
  • TeamKIDS – Wednesdays from 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. for Bed Babies – 6th grade
  • The Gathering – Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m. in the Sanctuary; live streamed on Facebook at 6:30 p.m., also available on the website at: http://www.fbcweatherford.com by noon on Thursday
  • Services are being posted on the church website, the church YouTube channel at FBC Weatherford Media, and on the church Facebook page at 9:00 a.m. each Sunday.

New Members

Conlee Morrow Dax Rogers

Easily Triggered

Mouse traps go off in a millisecond whenever they are tripped. It took me a while to learn how to set a mouse trap without snapping my own finger. Setting the trap required getting the pressure just right to hold everything in place after having applied cheese for bait. Peanut butter works just as well. Once the trap is positioned, it requires only a minimal disturbance to make it snap. Mouse traps work well because they are triggered easily.

What is true for mouse traps is not true for people. People do not work well when they are triggered easily. Being swift to hear, slow to speak, and slow to anger is expected of all believers in the Scriptures. Meeting this expectation seems almost foreign in our world today. Many people seem to be on the verge of “snapping” at the first indication of a disturbance. Toleration and moderation have given way to radical expectations. “My way or the highway” describes the attitudes of many.

How did we get to the point that strangers in cars next to us have no problem honking and making obscene gestures if we impede their progress in any way? How did we get to the place where any word spoken can be taken as offensive, based on how it is received, not how it is said? How did so many people become thin-skinned and hate-filled?

I guess we could blame it on the coronavirus. We have learned that when humans are locked up and isolated they do not function well. Failure to interact with others allows stress to build like steam in a kettle. Molehills are turned into mountains when they are front and center every single day. I remain amazed at the tension I have felt during the past year over masks, vaccines, and mandates.

I push back against the tension with a smile. Literally, I smile. I smile at church. I smile at the store. I smile at home. I smile while walking. I smile while listening to complaints. I smile while reading “not a fan” mail. I breath through my nose and live to enjoy another day. I accept that many people are dealing with many things. They may be mad enough to “snap”, but I do not have to go there. Neither do you. Let’s be the peacemakers!

Matthew 5:9, Earl


FBC Happenings

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  • This Sundays Sermon “Elijah and Elisha” I Kings 19:9-21
  • Family Worship and LifeGroups, Sundays at 9:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.
  • TeamKIDS – Wednesdays from 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. for Bed Babies – 6th grade
  • The Gathering – Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m. in the Sanctuary; live streamed on Facebook at 6:30 p.m., also available on the website at: http://www.fbcweatherford.com by noon on Thursday
  • Services are being posted on the church website, the church YouTube channel at FBC Weatherford Media, and on the church Facebook page at 9:00 a.m. each 

New Members

Ava VanDeburgh Tatum Langford

Skunk Attack

I laughed until I cried. One of the reasons I enjoy visiting face to face with people is the fact that I never really know what is going to happen. I had stopped by to express my concern and pray for a man whose sister had died a few days earlier. Someone had left a message on the church phone, informing me of the loss. I went to see my friend.

Earl and Joyce always gladly welcome me into their home. Many years ago I learned that he shared my passion for quail hunting and Brittany bird dogs. He and Joyce also share my love for Jesus. What faithful servants of the Lord they have been and continue to be. Earl will be 90 years old next month.

As he shared the details of his sister’s death, he mentioned that she had been sick for some time and now was in a better place. It was time, and she had been prepared. He and Joyce had God’s peace that passes understanding. At that point, Earl radically changed the topic of our conversation.

“I was attacked by a skunk!” He went on to explain that the past Wednesday, as he was hooking up the hose on the south side of the house, he felt something hit him in the leg. He looked back to see a skunk staring at him. He kicked the skunk as hard as he could, assuming that the stinky thing would get out while the getting was good. He assumed wrong. The skunk made four different runs at Earl, only to be met with the shoe that eventually went in the trash. Finally, the skunk headed east, looking back over his shoulder, as if to say, “I will return.”

In the aftermath of the skunk attack, Earl ended up in the ER, and began a series of rabies’ shots. He threw away his other shoe as well as his jeans. The skunk only sprayed a little, which was more than enough. Earl tried to get away, but the skunk had him cornered between a tree and a bush. He had called for Joyce, but she did not hear him. Everything Earl said was said with a smile on his face. He was hamming it up, and I was enjoying every word. I went home refreshed because I had laughed with Earl.

Life is 10% circumstance and 90% attitude.

LOL, Earl


FBC Happenings


  • This Sundays Sermon “Naomi and Ruth” Ruth 1:14-22
  • Family Worship and LifeGroups, Sundays at 9:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.
  • TeamKIDS – Wednesdays from 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. for Bed Babies – 6th grade
  • The Gathering – Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m. in the Sanctuary; live streamed on Facebook at 6:30 p.m., also available on the website at: http://www.fbcweatherford.com by noon on Thursday
  • Services are being posted on the church website, the church YouTube channel at FBC Weatherford Media, and on the church Facebook page at 9:00 a.m. each 

New Member

Macey Barger

Rolling Dice and Making Disciples

We cast lots. I had never done so before. Well, let me confess that there was the semester during Jr. High when my friend “Huck” showed me how to shoot craps during down time while we served as library aids. We never rolled for money, but I did learn how the game was played. Also, through the years I have rolled many a dice while playing board games, bunko, and farkle.

The lots we cast in our D-Group was the first time I have ever done so in church for a specific purpose. Our group had grown large enough to form two groups. Brandon Lucas and I attended a roundtable for D-Group leaders and became convicted that we should form two groups from the one, making room for more men to participate and develop as disciples of Jesus. As we left the Sunday night meeting, Brandon said, “I will bring the dice in the morning.”

He did. All nine men present discussed the possibility of creating two units out of the one. Everyone was in agreement that we should do so. Each of those men has a heart for God and wants to make as many disciples as possible. I love them all and feel so comfortable with them. My comfort was not the main issue under consideration. Brandon established the rules and passed one die to his left. Those who rolled an odd number would be in one group. Those who rolled an even number would be in the other group. When the rolling ended, four were in the even group, and five of us were in the odd group. No comments, please.

We spent the rest of the hour discussing Scripture and life like we do every Monday morning. We laughed, and we encouraged, and we prayed. When we exited to face another week, we wished each other well. The following Monday we met in adjacent rooms that had room to reach more people. If you are a man looking for a D-Group, let us know. We meet in the main building fellowship hall on Mondays at 6:00 a.m. We created room for you!

Go and Make Disciples, Earl


FBC Happenings

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  • This Sundays Sermon “Eli and Samuel” I Samuel 3:1-21
  • Family Worship and LifeGroups, Sundays at 9:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.
  • TeamKIDS – Wednesdays from 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. for Bed Babies – 6th grade
  • The Gathering – Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m. in the Sanctuary; live streamed on Facebook at 6:30 p.m., also available on the website at: http://www.fbcweatherford.com by noon on Thursday
  • Services are being posted on the church website, the church YouTube channel at FBC Weatherford Media, and on the church Facebook page at 9:00 a.m. each 

He is Risen Indeed

The significance of the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead cannot be overstated. Without His resurrection, Jesus would have been no more than a delusional religious leader, filled with false opinions about Himself and everything else. If He had not been raised from the dead, Jesus would have no reason to be followed and trusted more than any other religious leader. The apostle Paul went so far as to state that if Jesus has not been raised our faith is futile, and we are still in our sins.

So, has Jesus been raised from the dead? Did Jesus really die on Calvary’s cross and then come back to life on the third day? The evidence in the New Testament certainly testifies that He did. Wishy-washy apostles became unafraid of anything the authorities could do to them. Many gave up their human lives because they would neither recant their allegiance to Jesus nor cease telling others about Him. They knew they had a better home with Him in heaven. He lived after He died. So would they.

Transformed lives fill the New Testament and surround us today. Those lives were and are changed because of the power of the living Jesus within. Any and all people whom Jesus occupies become more and more like Him because He lives within them. He couldn’t do this if He never came back to life. I remember the old hymn that asked and answered the question as to whether Jesus is really alive. “You ask me how I know He lives? He lives within my heart.”

I have been a Christian for 56 years. I have been reading and studying the Bible for most of those years. The more I consume the Word of God, the more convinced I become of the reality of who Jesus is and all that Jesus has done and will do. My devotion to Jesus is not a leap into the dark, but a basking in the light of His truth. I am not an exception. I am the norm of all who truly know Jesus as Lord.

Easter is when we celebrate not only the resurrection of Jesus from the dead, but also the resurrecting of our own sinful selves from slavery to sin and death and fear. Up from the grave He arose! Because of His triumph, we live!

He is risen! He is risen indeed! Earl


FBC Happenings

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  • This Sundays Sermon “Raised From The Dead” I Corinthians 15:12-20
  • Family Worship and LifeGroups, Sundays at 9:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.
  • TeamKIDS – Wednesdays from 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. for Bed Babies – 6th grade
  • The Gathering – Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m. in the Sanctuary; live streamed on Facebook at 6:30 p.m., also available on the website at: http://www.fbcweatherford.com by noon on Thursday
  • Services are being posted on the church website, the church YouTube channel at FBC Weatherford Media, and on the church Facebook page at 9:00 a.m. each 

New Member

Michael Sterbach

We Made It!

“We made it!”

This was the joint celebratory declaration we stated at the conclusion of a recent staff meeting. We were referring to the past year that was filled with unprecedented challenges. We realize that things have not returned to “normal,” but they are so much better than they have been in a very long time. At least, it seems like it has been a very long time.

We learned to live and serve spontaneously. Everything was up in the air from week to week. We made all worship online, then made it in-person again. Then, we went online again, before coming back to the church at the beginning of January. We communicated over the internet through our website and utilized You Tube. We made lots of phone calls and developed a weekly post which we called the “Community Connection.” We didn’t always remain connected, but we sought to do so.

Thank you so much for your ongoing support through the entire year. I can’t tell you how it thrills my soul to look out and see so many of you in worship every Sunday morning. You did not get out of the habit, and you are not opting to watch the livestream when you are able to come to church. Your physical presence encourages all of us. Thank you for making the effort to be here. I am elated that you have pushed through and are now coming to church.

I will continue to smile and wave, as one of my friends advised me to do a few months ago. If you aren’t comfortable coming back to church yet, I understand. If you continue to watch online, know that I am still your pastor. Contact me if you need me. Our calendar is full of activities for the summer. We are all excited about what we will be able to do this year that didn’t happen last year.

When I updated my visitation list from last year, I noticed at least four names whose funerals I preached or attended. I was reminded of the painful realities that occurred during the pandemic. I preached 30 funerals during 2020. Many of us are still grieving the loss of those we love. By the grace of God, we will make it through. How blessed I am to remain your pastor in 2021. We made it!

Onward and Upward! Earl


FBC Happenings


  • This Sundays Sermon “Triumphant Living” Mark 11:1-11
  • Family Worship and LifeGroups, Sundays at 9:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.
  • TeamKIDS – Wednesdays from 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. for Bed Babies – 6th grade
  • The Gathering – Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m. in the Sanctuary; live streamed on Facebook at 6:30 p.m., also available on the website at: http://www.fbcweatherford.com by noon on Thursday
  • Services are being posted on the church website, the church YouTube channel at FBC Weatherford Media, and on the church Facebook page at 9:00 a.m. each 

Last Women Standing

They stayed until they could stay no more. The three women remind me of those who stand beside their loved one’s open casket for an extended period of time at the end of the funeral. They want one last look. They can’t believe the one they love is headed for the cemetery. They know death has happened, but find it hard to say goodbye. Mary, Mary, and Salome knew they needed to leave, but they could not bring themselves to go.

From a distance they watched as the crowd cleared away from the crosses on top of the hill. Those who earlier had shouted and jeered had grown silent during the darkness that began at noon and lasted three hours. Most of them left as soon as they could see to travel. Soldiers showed up and broke the legs of the thieves on either side of Jesus. They opted to thrust a spear into Jesus’ side. The women wept as they accepted the reality of Jesus’ death.

It had been a grueling day. They had watched as the One they followed and supported and loved underwent unjust punishment and a torturous death. Watching the events of the day exhausted them. Accepting the end of their hope devastated them. He was the One they had believed to be the Messiah promised by the prophets. The miracles He worked and the demons He removed all pointed to the reality of His divinity. Now He was dead.

Now they were confused. Now they were broken-hearted. Now they were scared. However, they were there! Their love for Jesus would not let them leave. The plot thickened as two Pharisees came and removed the body of Jesus from the middle cross. They watched Joseph and Nicodemus prepare the body of Jesus for burial. They followed as the two men carried His body and laid it in a nearby tomb. The women planned to bring more spices later. They noted that a huge stone was rolled across the entrance of the tomb. They planned to return anyway.

The setting sun cast a red glow across the land. What they considered to be the elimination of their hope was actually the establishment of hope for everyone. The blood Jesus shed paid in full for the sins of the world. The blood Jesus shed made forgiveness possible for sinners.

It still does, Earl


FBC Happenings

  • This Sundays Sermon “Onward and Upward!” Acts 14:1-20
  • Family Worship and LifeGroups, Sundays at 9:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.
  • GriefShare – this Sunday, March 21 at 4:30 p.m. in the Parlor
  • D-Group Leaders Roundtable – this Sunday, March 21 at 6:00 p.m. in the FLC
  • Membership Matters Class – Sunday, March 28 at 10:30 a.m. in the Choir Room
  • Good Friday on Wednesday – Wednesday, March 31…..Dramatic Monologue and Observance of The Lord’s Supper during The Gathering at 6:30 p.m.
  • TeamKIDS – Wednesdays from 6:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m. for Bed Babies – 6th grade
  • The Gathering – Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m. in the Sanctuary; live streamed on Facebook at 6:30 p.m., also available on the website at: http://www.fbcweatherford.com by noon on Thursday
  • Services are being posted on the church website, the church YouTube channel at FBC Weatherford Media, and on the church Facebook page at 9:00 a.m. each Sunday.

Under Construction

Did you notice the roll off dumpsters in the west parking lot? We are officially under construction. Many months ago the church approved a renovation project to add a huge meeting room in the children’s department on the second floor. The room will be located directly above the choir room. To create the room for children, a concrete floor is being constructed above the choir room. The project is being funded with money from the capital improvement account, as recommended by the Stewardship Committee.

Once the project is completed, the choir room will still seat the same number of singers but with a shorter ceiling. Rehearsals will be conducted as effectively as ever. We are excited about the prospects for choir that are coming with the plunging coronavirus numbers.

The increased space on the second floor will allow for large groups of children to meet together to sing and learn and play. The actual use of the space will be determined by the children’s leadership. The space will accommodate growing numbers of children on Wednesday nights and Sunday mornings. Reaching children is an essential part of reaching families. I am glad that we can intentionally provide space for growth.

Most members of First Baptist Church have never been in the choir room or in the children’s department on the second and third floors of the main building. That is why I wanted to update you on what is going on. Thank you for your patience and cooperation as we continue moving forward as a church. This has been a year like no other during my tenure as a pastor. Thanks for the grace you have shown to me and the rest of the staff. We feel fortunate to serve with you.

Some things will never return to the way they were. I am fine with that. Life keeps changing, yet God remains faithful. Once the pandemic is fully behind us, there will be some people who may never return to First Baptist Church again. However, there will be others who have never come before who show up in mass. God will use the world’s emphasis upon physical death to convict people of their need for a Savior. One friend told me, “If this year doesn’t convince you to get your life in order, nothing will.” What a great insight.

I love you, Earl


FBC Happenings

  • Daylight Saving Time begins this Sunday, March 14. Turn your clocks forward one hour on Saturday evening.
  • This Sundays Sermon “The Message of Salvation” Acts 13:14-52
  • Family Worship and LifeGroups, Sundays at 9:00 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.
  • GriefShare – this Sunday, March 14 at 4:30 p.m. in the Parlor
  • Deacons’ Meeting this Sunday, March 14 at 5:00 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall
  • It’s Spring Break next week…..NO TeamKIDS on Wednesday
  • The Gathering – Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m. in the Sanctuary; live streamed on Facebook at 6:30 p.m., also available on the website at: http://www.fbcweatherford.com by noon on Thursday
  • Services are being posted on the church website, the church YouTube channel at FBC Weatherford Media, and on the church Facebook page at 9:00 a.m. each Sunday.

New Member

Peyton Davenport