8/22/10 ~ Today I visited The Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church in
I was in Palatka, FL for the third time in a little over a month. This was
the last Sunday before the Primary Election and we had the sense that the
campaign was about over.
The final laps had been hectic: Pensacola, Thursday; Friday I took a thousand
mile round trip by myself to a Melbourne Event, and back via Jacksonville after an
early afternoon T.V.
interview in Tallahassee; Saturday we did two events (FWB at noon & Tallahassee
in the PM); and here we were in Palatka on Sunday, planning to return to FWB
that very night!
I turned left off main street just before 10:30 AM and pulled into a parking
spot at the church. I had inadvertently blocked another arrival with my clumsy
maneuver, but the driver pulled aside courteously and waved me ahead. I
discovered it was the visiting preacher and his wife when I went over to their
car to say hello!
I left my Bible on the trunk of my car as I quickly took the outside photos
and then scurried inside where I was warmly welcomed, and hugged by a number of
the ladies. I soon discovered that I was the only non-African-American at the
service; but coming from Jamaica, it felt just like home!
There was a lot of soul music, an offering was taken, the sermon lasted about
20 minutes and at the end everyone went up front for a blessing which I joined.
It was a great experience!
< MUSIC VIDEOS
"In The Wrong Place At The Right Time."
(A summary, adapted & edited from the sermon given
8/22/2010 by visiting Pastor at The Bethel African Methodist Episcopal church,
Palatka, FL; referencing Matt 26: 69-75.)
After being introduced by his wife, Pastor said: "I greet you in the name of
He reminisced about a recent stroke he’d suffered and was very upbeat about
his recovery, "Thank you Lord; hallelujah!"
Pastor then exclaimed: "I want to tell you about a man you know ~ Jesus.
He woke me this morning and got me here. Lord, take me out of self
and use me. Thank you Jesus. Put the Word in my mouth. Help me, Lord. I glorify
Pastor referenced Matt 26: 69-75. "Peter was sitting in the courtyard and a
damsel came to him. ‘You also were with Jesus of Galilee,’ she said. But he
denied it before them all." Pastor noted that Peter repudiated Jesus three
times, "before the cock crowed ... and wept bitterly" when he realized his
Contemplating the arrest, trial, conviction and crucifixion ~ one is forced
to the conclusion that Peter, a true follower of God, was in the wrong place at
the right time.
Peter wept when he realized his fault and sometimes we too must weep and ask
ourselves: do we also deny God? Often we sin. We frequently find ourselves at
the right time with the wrong people. Or even with the right folks, but at the
wrong time. And then sin enters in. But everything on earth is to God’s
purpose. Just remember that God always hears what you pray. So, like Peter, pray
Moreover you can always pray. You all know that "they took
prayer out of school." (This evil was accomplished by one woman). But, even so,
you can still pray in school. All you have to do is close your
eyes and say silently in your heart: "God forgive me." So prayer for forgiveness
is always an option.
Peter was with the wrong crowd at the right time. God lets us do this too.
But all we have to do is call on Him for forgiveness. Peter cursed and swore
when he realized his error; so do we at times if stressed enough. Peter cursed
and denied Jesus Christ. He lacked strength. Then Peter remembered the words of
Jesus: "Before the cock crows, you will deny me three times."
Peter scoffed at this possibility when Jesus foretold it. But Peter could not
predict the future. We cannot predict the future either. Will we sin again?
Who can say? So do what you can for Christ NOW. Love Him, know Him and pray to
Though Peter denied The Lord ... Jesus still loved him. And when Jesus left
this earth, He loved us all so much that He said: "I am leaving you ‘The
Comforter’ who will get you the things you need."
Remember, God can do anything for me except one thing: HE CANNOT FAIL. So put
Him to the test. If you tried and didn’t get what you asked for, then go on your
knees again. Remember you are dealing with The Trinity. What awesome power: the
alpha & the omega; the beginning and the end. Try Him again. Say: "Call my name.
Here I am, Lord. I dare you to use me!"
So who do you follow? Is it Jesus? Then do not deny Him. And if you do sin,
pray for His forgiveness.
Now I invite you and the entire congregation to come forward for Jesus.
THANK YOU FOR YOUR GRACIOUS
WILLIAM ESCOFFERY III,
- CONTACT DATA
- (850) 225-7228
- Postal address
- 265 Country Club Rd., Shalimar, FL 32579
- Electronic mail
- E-Mail: dr.Escoffery@SenateBill.US
- WEB-SITE: http://www.senateBill.us/
- Webmaster: dr.Escoffery@SenateBill.US
Candidate, U.S. SENATE, FL