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3848 N Davis Hwy, Pensacola, Florida 32503, United States
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New Hope Christian Center is an open and affirming church

Seeds of Hope Devotional

March 18, 2018

Seeds of HOPE 

Hope is in Knowledge


We read in Luke 12:2 that ‘Nothing is covered up that will not be uncovered, and

nothing secret that will not become known’. There are many things in our life

time may never [probably when we’re in heaven] be revealed to us.


We depend on the media for news, but it no longer is investigative. Just

because someone says something, doesn’t make it true. The bible offers us the

truth. The more you study it, the more you realize this.


Jesus is the Way, the Truth, and the Life – John 14:6. If Jesus is the Way, we can

never get lost. If Jesus is the Truth, we can’t be deceived. And if Jesus is the Life,

the devil can’t kill us.


There is great value in reading and studying the Bible. Don’t rely on

someone to tell you what it says. Read it, pray about it, meditate on it, and allow

it to get deep down in your spirit.


Knowledge is the opportunity that God has given us to do, to make things better.

This makes knowledge a positive energy to secure a brighter future for others.

And knowledge helps us accept the responsibility to follow God’s leading, guiding,

and directing.


There is great hope in the knowledge of God and God’s 7,000+ promises

found within the bible.


Rev.David Pettitt

March 11, 2018

Seeds of HOPE 

Romance of Life


Jesus said; we do not live by bread alone… as we age, we realize there is a terrific

assault on our zest for living. Nowadays, in our microwave, stove top stuffing,

instant mashed potato, and multi-tasking internet society, our hearts gray long

before our hair does.


Recently, I had a conversation with the director of the YMCA I am a member of

here in Pensacola. She shared with me that I am an unusually encouraging

member. I told her, we all need encouragement, It’s just part of my nature. 


After suffering a stroke, I realized it was more important than ever to share hope.

I am at war with those who attempt robbing us of life’s deepest meaning

and joys through their negative, destructive behavior and attitudes.


Happiness, is derived from outward, superficial things. Whereas the joys of life

are generated within us. We were never designed by God to stress our bodies,

minds, and spirits as they are now.


Everyone experiences fear in one form of another. There is fear of the unknown,

failure, success, love, heartbreak, etc., etc. But fear is of the devil. 


Where there is fear, there is no love or God. Take time to really live and love. 


True living is a matter of balance. We are all made up of three parts 

[body, mind, and spirit],  take care to nourish and exercise each on a daily basis. 


Before you know it, you will  experience a romance of life.


Rev. David Pettitt

March 4, 2018

Seeds of HOPE 

Strength through HOPE


Human Life is extremely fragile and will challenge us in a single moment. How we

deal with just such a change, impacts our future, in either negative or positive

ways. Focusing on and Believing in Who is ultimately in charge is key to our life

altering circumstances.


We don’t plan on the unexpected loss of income, a death, and accident, or

a health challenge. Yet, these things happen to every one of us at some point in

this life. 


Afterwards, we ask ourselves; ‘Why me?’ or ‘How am I to deal with this?’ 

A strong belief system in the God of HOPE and God’s saving Grace is a starting

point.


All four gospels say; We can do all things with God. And in Ephesians 4:13

we know we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us.


Without this knowledge and belief in God, we are left completely hopeless. An

uncertain future adds stress and worry to our already unwanted situation.


However, when you are secure in the knowledge that God loves you and is in total

control of our unknowns, we can be assured we aren’t in this alone.


I know what I’m doing. I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you, not

abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for. -Jeremiah 29:11


Rev. David Pettitt

February 25, 2018

Seeds of HOPE 

Curse of Worry


Jesus said to His disciples in Luke 12:22 – Therefore I tell you, Do Not Worry…

yet worry and anxiety in our culture is an extremely debilitating factor in epic

proportions. This phenomenon is a direct result from depending more on self and

the government, than we do from God. We then succumb to worry, anxiety, panic

attacks, and under undue pressures and stress. This is physically unhealthy!


Peace is not the absence of problems, but the presence of God in our lives. How

we handle situations with the promises of God, totally changes our attitude.

There are both negative and positive thoughts or thinking. The more negative

thinking, the worse things become.


On the contrary, the more positive thinking, the quicker and more

effortless your journey through this life becomes. God’s strength becomes our

strength. People and humanity will discourage and disappoint. 


However, Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Who should you depend on?


Put your hope and trust in God and allow God to give you an abundant life in and

through Jesus Christ. We are a new creation in Christ. Amen!


Rev. David Pettitt

February 18, 2018

 

Seeds of HOPE 

Philosophy of Money

Several years ago, I heard how Norman Vincent Peale began publishing the Guidepost Magazine. Getting an endeavor like this off the ground was quite challenging for this pastor, primarily because he had zero knowledge in this area.


After a few years, their subscribers had grown to 40,000 a month. However, it was far below their break even point of 100,000 needed just to break even. At a board meeting, he called to discuss this issue, there was an invited patron who had made a generous donation in the past. She listened as they discussed the huge amount of debt they accumulated, this person asked to address the board. She began with the fact, she was not about to make a further donation, primarily because she felt they didn’t have a proper philosophy of money. Your goal is simply to pay off the mounting debt.


This individual was of the Jewish faith and asked to pray. She offered a simple prayer whereby she thanked God for answering their needs in advance. Afterwards, she challenged them to begin a discussion of ideas on how to increase the readership. Shortly thereafter, they exceeded their goal by over 2 million more subscribers.

They had to refocus their efforts to what would eliminate the debt. They now had a New Hope through the proper philosophy of money.


            Are you concentrating more on your problems in life, instead of how to reduce or eliminate them. Start by praying a prayer of Thanksgiving for the solutions. God will answer your prayer. 


Every time. Amen! 


Rev. David Pettitt

February 11, 2018

 Seeds of HOPE 


1 Corinthians 13:1-3

Love: the universal spiritual gift ] If I speak in tongues of human beings and of angels but I don’t have love, I’m a clanging gong or a clashing cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and I know all the mysteries and everything else, and if I have such complete faith that I can move mountains but I don’t have love, I’m nothing. If I give away everything that I have and hand over my own body to feel good about what I’ve done but I don’t have love, I receive no benefit whatsoever.


In other words; Even if you speak an uncountable number of human languages [which is quite impressive], but you do not know how to love, you haven’t accomplished much in this life.


Even if you can predict the future with accuracy, unknown facts, but you never figured out how to love one and other, you haven’t accomplished much in this life.


And even if you were the richest individual on earth, but don’t know how to love one another, you are poor in spirit.


Bottom line, no matter how successful, no matter how effective you have become, it matters not to God, unless you’ve learned to love God and neighbor, just as yourself,


Rev.  David Pettitt

Seeds of Hope Devotional

February 4, 2018

Seeds of HOPE – Mark 1:8b


…“but that One will baptize you with the Holy Spirit”.


 John the Baptist immersed people in water, it was called the Baptism. This is an event in life. It allows us to take note on where we are in life and make some corrections.


 However, he spoke of a different type of Baptism – with the Holy Spirit. This is when we are immersed in God. This is more a process, than a singular event in time. This Baptism also requires an immersion.


 However, this baptism is a process, over time step-by-step, little-by-little, we are growing stronger in our faith with and by the presence of God in our lives.


The Bible, when frequently used, describes the mystery and power of God’s personal presence.  This is likewise where our sense of peace is derived – through God’s presence in our lives.


 There will always be drama and conflicts and disrupts, but how we deal with these circumstances, depends on the level of God’s presence in our lives.


Have you been baptized in the Holy Spirit?


Rev. David Pettitt

January 28, 2018

Seeds of HOPE – 1st Century GPS


When John began to baptize people, he told them afterwards to repent. This basically implied turn your life around and go back to your previous behavior.


 Let’s use an example that you received a telephone call from a sibling who mentioned they have moved to a new state… a new location you are unfamiliar with how to get to. But you were given an invitation to come visit. All you have is the new address.


 If you type it into your GPS device, it will guide you along the journey. Should you make a wrong turn, you will be advised to turn around and make corrections to get to your destination.


This is what water baptism is all about. It is a moment to confess your sins [errors], and repent [turn around]. The GPS device will help you make the corrections needed to get back on track.


A modern day, real life GPS [God’s Protective Services] instructions found within the Bible, will help you accomplish this along life’s journey. Periodically, we all will need to repent, due to getting off course.


 I believe we are all aware when we’re not going the right way. Stop, Turn Around, and Start Over. There will always be opportunities to make corrections along our journey, back home. Listen for that still small voice! Psalm 46:10.


Rev. David Pettitt

January 21, 2018

PUTTING LIFE IN PERSPECTIVE

 

Affliction is particularly effective in helping us reevaluate our priorities.  When Thomas Chalmers became pastor of the church at Kilmany, Scotland in 1803, he was a young man of twenty-three with little real interest in religion.  He had taken the parish primarily so that he could also teach mathematics and astronomy.

 

As time went by, Chalmers neglected sermon preparation and the care of his people. The church went into steady and precipitous decline.  After several years he was stricken with a serious illness.  For four months he was unable to leave his sick room, and for almost a year he did not preach. 


Slowly he came to realize that his view of Christianity as simply an ethical system was not sufficient to see him through this valley of the shadow of death.  There in the lonely place of his illness he faced himself and the shallowness of his beliefs, until he experienced a dramatic spiritual conversion.

 

In the years that followed, Chalmers became the most powerful preacher in Scotland. And with it, he came to have a compelling social conscience.  The finest pulpits in Scotland were available to him, but he also chose to minister to the poorest of the population in special services on a tanner & #39's second story. 


A century later Lord Roseberry said of him, & quote; An illness lifted him into a higher sphere, and he soared higher.& quote;  Illness can do that to us, because it helps us get our values in order.


Rev. David Pettitt 

January 14, 3018

Seeds of Hope – I Have A Dream


Tomorrow, as a country, we will celebrate the birthday of Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. His most famous speech ever was some 6 decades ago – “I Have A Dream”.


The word dream, implies Hope. This one speech has been giving hope to

countless people ever since he first shared it. You could say MLK Jr, planted the seed of hope that brought forth a bumper crop.


When we do something for all the right reasons and for others, it lives on in the

hearts of many we may never even meet or know.


I was a teenager back then, and just thinking this man would be honored by his country, still amazes me. MLK Jr adopted his non-violent resistance principles from Gandhi and Jesus.


In other words, he was able to create a huge change for African American

folks throughout our country and beyond. This required at least two things;

 #1 A Seed of Hope and #2 the desire to realize this in a Christ-centered way? 


Maybe it is  time to plant your seed?!?


Rev. David Pettitt

January 7, 2018

 2018 The Opportunity of Starting Fresh


When someone becomes a Christian, he becomes a brand new person inside. He is not the same anymore. A new life has begun! 2 Corinthians 5:17


Recently, I have heard the word ‘goal’ replacing ‘resolution’ when determining changes for the new year. The other glaring element is most lists only deal with external changes. These changes create a temporary euphoric or feeling of happiness.

          

We should be after the spirit of Joy. This comes from internal changes which are lasting. Re-read the scripture above; ‘brand new person inside’ This is what life, real life… an abundant life is really all about.


How do we make this happen? Start by reading and understanding the bible, on a daily basis. Follow this by journaling what is being spoken to you. Psalm 46:10 advises; ‘Be still, to know that I am God’.

          

In order to make this happen, you might have to give up some activities or change your use of time. No one can tell you what these things are, but if they aren’t contributing to ‘a new person inside’, this is a logical place to begin.


Happiness, is from an external result and it is not a Fruit of the Spirit. Joy is a Fruit of the spirit and is long lasting… it is a part of your character of who you are. Choose to be filled with Joy through the true qualities of being a True Christian!


Rev. David Pettitt


Seeds of Hope Devotional

December 31, 2017

  

FINISHING THE DAY… AND THE YEAR


Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote: “Finish every day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt have crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be cumbered with your old nonsense. This day is all that is good and fair. It is too dear, with its hopes and invitations, to waste a moment on yesterdays.”
 
And the Apostle Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians 5:17 – “So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation; everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new!”


We shouldn’t and can’t live in the past. As we enter this new year 2018, make up your mind you enter this new year as a new you. People don’t drive a car only using a rearview mirror, to get to a new destination. And while traveling life’s journey, neither should we. 


Your path should also be well lit, with the Light of Jesus Christ, found within the ancient scriptures. Search through these texts for yourself, allowing them to speak directly to you.


Rev. David Pettitt

December 24, 2017

A CHILD IS BORN


God has a purpose in everything… there are no coincidences. So, let’s begin with God’s purpose of Christmas. The Bible gives us three [3] main reasons.



For one; the Bible teaches that Jesus came to earth to erase all the misconceptions about God. Jesus actually shattered the myth that God is mean, unloving, uncaring, unconcerned, detached and distant.



So, Jesus came to de-bunk the myths of God, and the second purpose Jesus came, was to express the Love of God. Maybe the best gift we can give at Christmas, isn’t a present [with a T], but our presence [with a CE]. This is the best gift of love we could ever give.


1 John 4:9-10 – God showed just how much He loves us by sending His only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through Him. This is real love… that God sent His Son as a sacrifice to take away all our sins.



And I’ll end with the 3rd reason Jesus came: To enable a relationship with God.



Notice, I didn’t say Jesus came to give you a religion. The only thing Jesus had to do with religion, is that He was opposed to it. Religion has always been human attempts at getting to God.



If you miss this… if you fail to understand this… you’ll miss the true meaning of Christmas. I don’t care how old you are… I don’t care what you’ve done in your life up to this point… God loves you no matter what… We need the light of Christ to know where we’re headed… and, we need the love of Christ to feel confidant, secure, and less stressed out.


Rev. David Pettitt

December 17, 2017

  

RECEIVING THE GIFT
 
“Yet to all who did receive [Christ], to those who believed in His name, He gave the right to become children of God.”  (John 1:12 NIV)
 
“So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in Him, rooted and built up in Him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.”  (Colossians 2:6-7 NIV)
 
You can never truly enjoy Christmas until you can look up into the Father’s face and tell Him you have received His Christmas gift. Receive, unwrap, and begin using your gift. It’s just for you!


Rev. David Pettitt



Seeds of Hope Devotional

December 10, 2017

 Seeds of Hope – Fulfilling Your Dreams


‘’They will soar on wings like eagles.Isaiah 40:31


 All too often we are stuck in a job that stifles our soul, leaving us on a proverbial runway of opportunity. The engines of our deepest passions, stalled. We’ve always had this vision to create a legacy for future generations as a heritage. 

           

The reality is, it is never too late to activate our dreams and visions. If you have felt stuck or stagnant and unfulfilled in using your gifts and talents, or realizing your personal satisfaction. Maybe it is the time for you to get out of your boat – out of your comfort zone. 


I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13 


If you have this strong, nagging desire to move forward in unknown territories in your life, it may be time for you to risk it all. In doing so, you may gain everything you ever wanted, starting with a personal level of satisfaction. 


Depend that with God, everything is possible. Your level of faith combined with God’s promises, and your strong desires to make a difference, and how can you go wrong? Remove all the stumbling blocks and obstacles, your path is free for you to succeed in life, like never before.   


Rev. David Pettitt 


(Scroll Down For More Devotionals)

December 3, 2017

 Seeds of Hope - Redefining My Dream    


Unless a grain of wheat falls   into the earth  and dies, it   remains just a single grain;  but if it dies, it bears much fruit.         

JOHN 12:24 (NRSV)      


Throughout my lifetime, I as fortunate to visualize a project, and no matter how much time passed, I kept the dream alive until fruition. 


A year and a half ago, I suffered a full blown stroke. After the first phase of rehabilitation, I gain the ability to walk and have some use of my hand. But my new health challenges drastically altered my way of living and caring for myself. 


Yet God’s strength became apparent through my new and unexpected weaknesses. All of a sudden I had a new appreciation of 2 Corinthians 12:9.


Christ’s strength is made perfect in our weakness.   


God has been using my story to encourage others. As I began to share my struggles and limitations, I began realizing how God’s strength was becoming more and more apparent through my weaknesses. 


Others were being encouraged to trust God at a deeper level.   


No I can’t do what I used to do. However, God is finished with me yet. I can still dream and still visualize, but I need to enlist others in completing these projects. God helps us endure, no matter our stage in this life.


Regardless of what we face, our lives can bless and encourage others.   


Rev. David Pettitt


(Scroll Down For More Devotionals)

Devotional November 26. 2017

 Seeds of Hope


I die every single day! Corinthians 15:31a 


The root of hurt, bitterness, and pain is self-centeredness. Whenever we are focused on self – what other people do or say to us, will automatically bother us. If we know how to die to self, then we will be delivered from self.           


Self-centeredness is the root of every bitterness and strife and it is the greatest enemy against humility. True biblical humility is when we are submitting to God and are willing to die to self daily and re imitating Jesus. True biblical humility is never focused on self. 


This is especially difficult after a close relative or friend transitions to their eternal life, the void at first can be quite debilitating. This is especially true when not anticipated or very young. The quicker we can process this passing in a healthy way, the quicker we will return to a more characteristic living experience. 


Until and unless we can rid ourselves of the spirit of self-centeredness, we will never be truly satisfied and happy with all others, including ourselves. 


Rev. David Pettitt


(Scroll Down for More Devotionals)

Seeds of Hope Devotional

Devotional October 8, 2017

 Seeds of Hope Devotional 


God takes what people do for evil, and turns it into good.

Genesis 50:20


 The recent mass shouting in Las Vegas, creating the best of humanity. For one; unimaginable examples of spirituality and fellowship. 


As in the shooter, the greatest need or void today in many people’s lives, is a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. After the carnage of this despicable act, the Great Commandment was being lived out – people helping others regardless of any difference. There was a need and perfect strangers assisted. This is the Gospel Alive!


We would feel so blessed to worship and grow with you. We gather at 10:00 am every Sunday.


Hope to see you soon! 

Rev David Pettitt 

Devotional October 15, 2017

 Seeds of Hope Devotional


John 15:16 [Common English Bible]


You didn’t choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you could go and produce fruit and so that your fruit could last.


 When choosing the name of this Devotional, I used “Seeds of Hope”. My intention is to keep it short and to leave you with some words [seeds] that will linger and grow beneath the surface. After they have developed will push through the surface and become an active part of Hope in people's lives.


Words [Seeds] have so much power – they have the power to discredit, destroy, and divide. But, they also have the power to heal, love, and unite. What are the words you use? Do they offer the potential of Hope? 


When I plant things, I usually use a high quality seed and with the expectation, of the corresponding thing will grow. If you plant avocadoes, don’t expect tomatoes to come up. And don’t make plans to make guacamole the next day.           


When planting a seed, it takes much time to begin growing. And it isn’t immediately obvious. The first growth is a root system not seen.


 Good luck with harvesting Hope… and may it be a lasting hope! 


Rev. David Pettitt 

Devotional October 22, 2017

Seeds of Hope Devotional


 …Focus on what you have, not what you don’t have.

2 Corinthians 8:12b 


All too often many people live a sad, defeated attitude, because they dwell on what they want, or what is missing from their lives. However, if they would reduce this emphasis and begin counting their own blessings, instead of someone else’s, they would begin to realize how fortunate they actually are.


 I remember as if it were just last week, the choir president came to visit me while I was preparing a meal in the church kitchen. She noticed I was not quite myself and questioned; why?          


I said that I wished I was upstairs singing with the choir. She said; the only reason we can all be there is because you provide an incredible, low cost meal for us each week. You are using your gifts and we are using our God-given gifts. Trust me, most of us wish we could cook like you!           


 From that day till now, I live by this scripture. And now, I am genuinely happy and filled with peace and joy! I focus on what I have, not be envious or jealous of others.


Rev. David Pettitt

Devotional October 29, 2017

Seeds of Hope Devotional


Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever!

Hebrews 13:8


 It simply amazes me just how much merchandise gets returned to the store. Not only does this practice drive the prices further higher, but it demonstrates how much people today depend on a guarantee. 


These unrealistic expectations flow to several areas of life – people today have more than at any time, but they are more disappointed than ever. They seem to be attracted to things of a temporary nature, more than permanent.            


Partners, age, jobs, bodies, positions, status, the list is endless, and all these things are of a temporary nature. 


Nothing but Jesus Christ is forever! True Joy and Peace can be found in your relationship with Jesus and He will never disappoint.           


 It could be time to consider this guarantee… At the New Hope Christian Center we help create and strengthen this permanent relationship – it will never fail you! 


We are not perfect people, but imperfect continually striving to be a better example of the One who guaranteed us an Abundant Life. We are a come-as-you-are church in every aspect. 


Hope we have the pleasure of worshiping with you one day! 


Rev, David Pettitt

Devotional November 5, 2017

Seeds of Hope Devotional

 Seeds of Hope Devotional - Freedom To Be Yourself


In 1 Samuel 17, Saul gave David his armor and sword to defeat Goliath. But gave it back, saying I have to do this my way, and not with your equipment.


 We are each a unique individual person, amazingly created as a Gift of God with a specific assignment that only we can accomplish. Don’t try measuring up to someone else. Just be the best YOU, that you can be. 


We are all different. You can’t accomplish your mission, by using someone else’s gifts. If you have a ring on a finger, your hand or other finger can’t see it. But your eye can. And your eye can never wear a ring. 


Start by thanking God for creating you, just as you are. If you. Maybe someone is attracted to brown eyed people, but because you show up with blue eyes, your intended new partner just passes by. 


Just be the best YOU that you know how to be. Be the genuine and authentic individual God created you to be. 


This is Freedom! 


Rev. David Pettitt

Devotional November 12, 2017

Seeds of Hope – Growing a Ministry


Though [the mustard seed] is the smallest of all seeds,Yet when it grows, it’s the biggest of garden plants.Matthew 13:32 


In the 1940s, a man named Frank Smith ordered a small packet of bamboo shouts and planted them on his property. In Prattville, Alabama.           


Today, his land is preserved as a county park, and visitors can enjoy a thick forest of bamboo plants over sixty feet tall. 


Jesus often compared God’s Kingdom to small things that grow into something big. In the text above, He likened to a tiny mustard seed that grows into a very large plant. Likewise, yeast that spreads through dough. 


The Public Ministry of Jesus Christ began with a small group of twelve [12] humble disciples. However, this message has spread all over the globe. 


Our efforts, often seem quite modest or small. Yet over time may be used by God to accomplish great kingdom building efforts. Just like the small packet of bamboo shouts Frank Smith planted which grew into a forest.            


As we personally grow in our relationships with Jesus, and begin sewing seeds of hope in others in our sphere of influence. God can use our lives to grow a forest from our seeds of hope, in others. 


It is often common to feel our meager efforts in Kingdom building, but God takes our efforts and convert them into something substantial!


Rev. David Pettitt