PANTHER CREEK BAPTIST CHURCH

Loving God - Growing Together


WHO IS EDDIE DUKE?

A few years ago, I sat down at a computer and typed out ten points that define me and that I strive for as a pastor and a person.  I called these points “A Guiding Light for a Messed Up Pastor”.  If you would like to know the pastor and person that I would like to be, this pretty much sums it up. 

1.      LOVE my neighbor.  One of the things I noticed during my first couple of years here is that I seem to have a good relationship with everyone from age 90 down to 2, whether they were a member of our church or a member of my family. I took time to look at people when they were talking, put my arm around them and tell them that I loved them.  I have gotten away from that.  I still love people – I am just not sure if I am made the time for them.  I don’t like this about me.  I want to be devoted to loving people again. I refuse to get uptight anymore over little things.  Heck, I refuse to get uptight anymore – period.  Furthermore, I will make it a point to encourage someone at least three times a day, either in person, by email, or by phone.  Romans 12:10

2.      Do MORE Outreach.  One clear thing that I have noticed about me is that I am never more fulfilled than when I am DOING something in the name of Jesus.  The whole time I am doing it, I feel like this is just what I was made for.  I believe God made me that way.  It is in my DNA.  I have to increase this activity in my life.  Romans 10:14

3.      SUPPORT Missions Work.  I believe Kingdom Work needs to be done across the aisle, across the street, across the country, and across the world.  Whenever I can go and participate, it does something to my heart -- It softens it…it defines it.  I have never seen a church with the mission direction we have.  I am thankful for it and I will continue to pursue it.  Acts 1:8

4.      Be THANKFUL.  The grass will never be greener than where God has me planted.  It has taken me a while to get here, but I am content.  Every day, I will include in my prayer time, five new things to be thankful for.  Every week, I will start the list over again.  This means that I will have to think about it, but therein lies the point.  I refuse to focus anymore on all the problems and challenges of being a pastor.  Instead, I choose to focus on all the blessings of being here. There are many.  Colossians 3:17

5.      It’s NOT About Me.   This really has spoken to my heart recently.  I am here not for myself, but for what God is doing through me.  I want to continue to strive to step outside myself and realize more of what God does in me.  I want to make more decisions wondering what impact it will have on others than me.  Galatians 2:20

6.      TEACH It, Brother!   I have always loved teaching Sunday School or small group sessions.  I love the interaction and discussion.  I believe some of our better moments have been when I have been doing more teaching.  Teaching has never been a burden for me, but rather a refuge.  I will strive to do more teaching.  II Timothy 3:16-17

7.      PREACH It, Brother!   God has convicted me about my preaching.  When I first became a pastor, I envisioned passionate preaching.  I believe I have lost a step here.  It was one of my original ten and I want to fire it back up.  I am very enthusiastic about God’s Word.  I want to make sure that it shows when I get up there Sunday morning and Sunday evening.  I am going to work on improving this.  II Timothy 4:2

8.      PRAY like you BELIEVE it.    I recently had a conversation with a pastor friend who told me that they have seen additions at their church for the past five weeks straight.  When I asked him why he believed that was taking place, he said, “well, we are praying for it.”  Here’s another conviction:  I am not praying like I believe I will experience God through it.  My prayer life needs to become more of a hunger and thirst.  I Chronicles 16:11

9.      Live with JOY.   I want to live like there is no tomorrow.  The Bible reminds me that life is a vapor, it is here for a little while and then gone.  Therefore, I need to live seeking God’s will for me.  God’s will for me is to live with joy and know that His Grace is sufficient.  In my life, from now on, I will count it all joy, the good and bad.  Philippians 4:4

10.    SUBMIT it before I sin it.   I have come to find – again, I don’t know why it has taken me so long – that I can’t do this on my own.  I need help.   I need accountability.  I will continue to invite people into my life to help me see myself, to encourage me and direct me.   Ephesians 5:16