Avoid the Roadblocks

God has been so real but the attack seems so consistent and persistent. I know God has a wonderful plan but at times I get weary. I know I am not to be weary in well doing as it says in Ga 6:9 And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. I do not plan to faint and this is why I must walk each night because I become weary each day. As I walked last night I kept saying to God, I love you with all my heart, soul, mind and strength but Lord I am weary and I feel I need to make a step of growth if I am going to win in this battle. That was when the Lord spoke to my heart and said, if you want to grow, then love thy neighbor. Mr 12:30 And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.Mr 12:31 And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these. My first response was “who is my neighbor?. Yes, just like the story of the good Samaritan in Luke 10. As I thought through the story, the Lord spoke to my heart that my neighbor was anyone who was in need and it was in my ability to meet that need. A neighbor is in close enough proximity that I can help him. He is a person of unknown, back ground, race, ethnicity or wealth. He is a person of unknown beliefs or political preferences. All we know is that he is a person in need that I can help. Then the Lord finalized the thought as I realized that every human being has a need and that is to be loved. Love thy neighbor. I had to realize that as I was striving to get closer to God, the reality that I was at a roadblock until I began to truly love my neighbor. If we are to love, we must be willing to forgive. We cannot truly forgive until we have the love of Christ in us. We cannot truly love others until we are willing to forgive others through the love of Christ. The song is so true. “He’s still working on me, to make me all I ought to be.” I hope my journey helps others to avoid roadblocks in their lives.

By Bob Hooker

On November 8, 1975, while sitting in his dorm room at Memphis State University, Robert Hooker realized he was miserable deep inside. He really didn’t have anything to live for. He had seen several of his friends die while in high school and college and knew that he too would face death someday. Robert’s heart was in turmoil as he picked up a small Bible and started to read. God’s Word was foreign to Robert and it was hard for him to understand; just as he was about to close the Bible he spotted some verses in the back of the Book. After reading these verses he understood that he was a sinner, and deserved to go to a place called Hell. Robert knelt beside his bed and asked Jesus Christ to save him and give him eternal life. Robert realized for the first time that Jesus Christ was truly the Son of God, and had lived a spotless life. He realized Jesus died on the cross, was buried, and rose from the grave, just so he could have eternal life. Robert graduated from Memphis State and went on to work at Trinity Baptist Church in Collierville, Tennessee as the Youth Pastor. While attending this church, God called Robert to preach and he, his wife and two daughters moved to Indiana to attend Hyles-Anderson College in January of 1982. Robert graduated from Hyles-Anderson College with a Bachelor of Science degree in Pastoral Theology in May of 1985. Later, Robert received his Masters in Pastoral Theology. Bro. Hooker has been working at Hyles-Anderson College and in the ministries of First Baptist Church since 1985. In 2005 Bro. Hooker was given a Doctorate of Divinity by Dr. Jack Schaap. Dr. Hooker is the Sr. Vice President and a Professor at Hyles-Anderson College. Dr. Hooker teaches the Faith and Family Sunday school class at the First Baptist Church of Hammond. 1985 - Demerit Counselor 1986 - Part-time staff member at the church and director of the Sailor Ministry 1990 - Athletic Director and part-time faculty 1996 - Full-time faculty 2001 - Dean of Married Students 2003 - Dean of Student Counseling 2006 - Sr. Vice President

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