Rick - Admin Zimmerman


Thu, Oct 18, 1:15 PM

Dear Central Members and Friends,


Sears is making headlines. The mail order catalog company that grew to become a thriving retail giant has now declared bankruptcy. The store that was once a strong, progressive American icon somehow lost its way and became irrelevant. As I read the attached Wall Street Journal article about the decline of the Sears Corporation, I recognized that similar circumstances can occur in our lives as believers when we lose our way. Sears became financially bankrupt, and we can become spiritually bankrupt if we lose our focus and buy into the death sentence of believing that we are doing enough, that we are alright as we are, and that others need to grow and develop instead of us. There is no place for complacency in the life of a Christian. We are either moving forward or backwards; therefore, we must be intentional about our spiritual growth.

In Science class we learned that living organisms are either thriving or dying; the same line of reasoning applies to us as Christians. We are either thriving or dying spiritually. Many things can help us identify where we stand, our behaviors, motives, successes and even our failures. Ultimately, our decisions and our attitude toward God reveal whether we are thriving or dying spiritually.

At one point in my life, I was dying spiritually. I didn’t recognize it because I was busy chasing everything that I thought would make me successful, but I am so grateful that God used people to minister to me and help me to realize that the abundant life I desired, the life God desired for me, could only be found in Jesus (John 10:10). Attending church and giving offerings was not enough. In order for me to experience my new life in Christ I had to make the conscious decision to make Christ the Lord of my life, deny my selfish desires and embrace a new way of living. “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new” (2 Corinthians 5:17). I have since learned that when we are faithful and completely dedicated to God, success is inevitable (Joshua 1:8).

We want to experience all of God’s promises, but it is difficult for us to position ourselves to receive them because our natural inclination is to be the master of our own lives. That’s why we have to surrender our lives to the Lord and obey Him daily. Jesus said, “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing” (John 15:5). As we follow Christ and make it our business to be about our Father’s business, we will thrive in every area of our lives.


Grace and Shalom!

Pastor Perry Stuckey


I thought you would be interested in the following story from The Wall Street Journal.

Sears, Once Retail Colossus, Enters Painful New Era


Download the Wall Street Journal app here: WSJ.


Rick - Admin ZimmermanTHRIVING OR DYING
read more





Dear Central Members and Friends

I pray your Joy is complete in Christ!! One of the important principles of our Christian journey is learning that our “Joy is made complete in Jesus Christ” and that life comes with all types of struggles. However, the key to life is struggling well when we find ourselves in a struggle!! Joseph is a great example for us in the Old Testament book of  Genesis. Joseph encountered numerous struggles early in his life. However, he kept his focus on pleasing God in the midst of his struggles and you know how the story ends!! Joseph became the Prime Minister of all of Egypt, second in command to Pharaoh only.

God loves us and His desire is to make our “Joy Complete” as noted in John 15:11. Understanding the source of your joy is the key to victory in life!! Jesus Christ is the source of your joy and you will only experience His supreme “Joy’  by putting your complete trust in Him as your Lord and Savior and by walking in obedience to His will!!

I have learned this principle over the years and it keeps me centered when I encounter struggles and the trials of life. Like you, my life is not void of struggles. However, my objective is to struggle well and trust in Christ to get me through all of my struggles over time. He has been extremely gracious to me over the years and I suspect you can say that also when you reflect on His grace and mercy!!

 I want the very best for you and your family and my desire is that you set a great example for everyone around you by allowing them to see the overwhelming “Joy” you have despite your struggles that only come from your complete trust and relationship with Jesus Christ!! What separates true believers from the rest of the world is that we don’t fall apart when we encounter life struggles. We impact the world because they see a “Joy” in us that is unexplainable by the world’s standards!!

I pray that your “Joy is Complete” and this is only made possible by understanding what Jesus truly meant in John 15:11. I look forward to seeing you on Sunday and for those of you who are located in other states, may you have a profound impact on the people around you, as you demonstrate to them and the world that “Jesus Christ is the Center of your Joy.”

Grace & Shalom!!!

Pastor Perry Stuckey



Rick - Admin ZimmermanCOMPLETE JOY IN CHRIST
read more

Touched by the Love of God

September 17, 2018

Dear Central Members and Friends,

As each of us reflects on the many blessings God has granted us, we have much to be thankful for this week!! Please continue to keep our brothers and sisters in North Carolina who have been severely impacted by Hurricane Florence in your thoughts and prayers. We will again partner with Wal-Mart as a church to assist the victims of this hurricane. Please see the last paragraph of this letter for the details on how to give if you desire to participate with us.

We often, with the best of intentions, fail to demonstrate Christian love to the extent we should!! I know on occasions when I am busy and exhausted that I don’t always greet everyone with a smile or exhibit patience in listening to the extent that I should. I am often thinking about the next business topic that I must address at work or the next issue that is important for me to address at church. However, for the individuals who are impacted by these interactions with us, when we are not on our best behavior, they don’t quite experience the love of God through us to the extent they should!!

How do we slow down in the heat of the moment, during the crisis of the day, and behave in a loving way that demonstrates to the world we have been touched by Jesus’ love?? This is not easy to do. However, it is possible for us to do it if we maintain a relentless focus on treating every interaction with people as a precious opportunity to allow people to see that we have been touched by Jesus’ love. A great way to start is to demonstrate more kindness to the people who make annoying solicitation phone calls to you to purchase something or vote for a particular candidate. Practice being in the moment by demonstrating the “Fruit of the Spirit” as noted in Gal. 5:22 when you interact with them. Expand this to your interactions with other people that you find challenging or difficult!!

Remember we all have been touched by God’s grace and love and none of us are worthy of it!!

I hope you enjoy the attached slides from the new sermon series I started on “Touched By His Love”. We started this sermon series by examining John 15:12-13, noting that the text is extremely clear about the below items:

1.) We must understand that from God’s perspective the Supreme Command for Believers is: to Love one another

2.) The Supreme Standard for Believers is: The Love of Jesus

3.) The Supreme Bond of Friends: Relationships based on Truth and The Word of God made known by Jesus Christ

Jesus is giving us a strong message in this text about the “Relationship” He expects of Believers! John 15:12-17 is about the Relationship of Believers to Believers.

How Believers relate to other Believers is of critical importance. Division will destroy a body of people quicker than any other single thing. Division can:
* Destroy the body of Christ
* Destroy a fellowship of Believers
* Destroy the witness of Believers
* Destroy a human soul seeking God

Too many in American churches are known more for their grumbling, griping, complaining, murmuring, and divisiveness than for anything else. Nothing cuts to the heart of Jesus more than such self-centered and divisive behavior.

A.) In verse 12 We discover the “Supreme Command of Believers: To love one another.”

B.) In verses 12 and 13 We discover the “Supreme Standard of Believers: The love of Jesus.”

Jesus reveals to us in verse 12 that He gives us a new commandment and that commandment is to love one another just as He has loved us. We must understand beyond anything else Jesus is very serious about what He is saying in this text.

This is why John writes in chapter 13:34-35, “A new commandment I give unto you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this shall all men know that you are my disciples, if you have love one to another”. We live in a sin sick, selfish society that does not display love. Jesus is saying that If you truly are born again and “Touched by My Love” you would demonstrate love one to another!!
• We know the tree by the fruit it bears!!

In concluding, our desire must be to demonstrate the real love of the Father toward our brothers and sisters in the world. We must remember that God graciously chose us and set us apart by the Lord Jesus Christ, and because of His finished work on Calvary for us, we are to go into the world and bear fruit!!

He has sent us into the world according to John 17:18 as His personal Ambassadors to tell others about the King and His great salvation. When we witness to others and win them to Christ, this is bringing forth fruit to the glory of God.

The real evidence of true “Son-ship” discipleship (John15:8) and friendship (John 15:15) is fruit!! “Wherefore, by their fruit you should know them” (Matt 7:20).

Where there is true fruit, it remains; and man-made results eventually disappear. Fruit has in it the seed for more fruit, so the process is continuous action of fruit producing more fruit!!! Whatever is born of the Spirit of God has the mark of eternity on it, and it will last!!

Now back to how to contribute through our ministry to the victims of Hurricane Florence if you desire to give through our church website. We will update you next week via my letter on the donations made. Please visit our church web-site at www.centralbaptistkingsport.com, click on the “Give” tab and select Hurricane Florence Victims as your designation in the “To:” option field.
Our collective giving is a tangible way to demonstrate God’s love toward people, especially during a crisis like this in North Carolina.

Grace & Shalom!!

Pastor Perry Stuckey

Rick - Admin ZimmermanTouched by the Love of God
read more

Responding to Unexpected Moments

Dear Central Members & Friends:

I pray this note finds you and your family doing well and, more importantly, engaged in activities that pleases God even if you are hit by an unexpected storm!! We often are challenged by unexpected moments that pop-up in our life when we least expect them!! I experienced this on Sunday as I left home feeling fine and for some reason during the middle of service, I found myself dehydrated, exhausted, feeling miserable, but I still had to deliver the sermon. God was gracious and got me through the 11:00 AM service and also our Sunday evening Unity Prayer service where several churches were also involved. This was one of those unexpected moments that pop-up in all of our lives from time to time and some are more severe than others. The key is how do we respond in those unexpected moments!!

We can’t always control the moments, but we can control our behavior and how we respond to the situation. I want to share three critical points that will assist you when you find yourself in an “unexpected moment.” These three points are essential for us to model grace and continue to honor God in the process.

1. We must maintain a critical focus on completing our priorities, or the task at hand. It is very easy to allow unexpected moments to get us off-track or deviate from God’s objective. When unexpected moments occur, it is more essential than ever to maintain a critical focus on completing the task or priority at hand. If we allow ourselves to get distracted or off-track, we delay getting the essential things done that are most important. Staying mentally focused is critical during moments of distractions or unexpected attacks. This will take discipline and prayer on your part.

2. Ensure we make the appropriate critical decisions. All decisions are not critical. However, the decisions that are critical must be made appropriately in unexpected moments.
It is very easy to make bad decisions during unexpected moments; we often find ourselves reacting out of emotions, making snap decisions during these times. We must maintain a relentless focus during unexpected moments and ensure we are sensitive to the guidance and direction of the Holy Spirit. In our study on Sunday we learned that Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, (John 1:37-40) made the appropriate decision to follow Jesus home and ultimately ended up being a disciple who also witnessed to Simon Peter about Jesus. We want to learn to make appropriate critical decisions in the moment as we encounter unexpected issues. In order to do this we must be led by the Holy Spirit, moment by moment, staying constantly connected to God throughout the course of our day for this to become a reality!!!

3. We must have a critical concern for others; this leads to a greater purpose than ourselves. When we are focused on ourselves, our decision making becomes all about us and what we are trying to accomplish. Andrew’s immediate concern, after he discovered who Jesus truly was and accepted him, was finding his brother Peter to ensure that he also met Jesus. This was the best decision Andrew could have made because Jesus had great plans for Peter that Peter was unaware of. Peter became a great disciple and leader in the early church and we all are benefitting today from Peter’s decision to follow Jesus. When we make the appropriate critical decision to completely surrender all and follow Jesus, we align ourselves with God’s will. We accomplish more in life when we align with God’s will and we also help others achieve more. Are you so concerned with holding on to something that you are preventing your future blessings and also limiting the blessings of others?? Think deeply about this question for the next several days as you study the attached slide deck from Sunday.

Only a few people knew I wasn’t feeling well on Sunday, but I stayed mentally focused and completed the assigned task with God’s help & guidance. Let’s all do our best to maintain our focus, make appropriate critical decisions, and have a critical concern for others!!

I hope you take the appropriate time to review the attached slide deck and allow God to minister to your heart!!

Grace & Shalom!!!

Pastor Perry Stuckey

Rick - Admin ZimmermanResponding to Unexpected Moments
read more

Understanding the Manifest Presence of God

Dear Central Members & Friends,

I hope your week is off to an excellent start and you are modeling grace and experiencing the presence of God in your life in unique ways!! If you have been spending quality time applying the spiritual lessons in your daily life from our study series on “Understanding the Manifest Presence of God,” I am extremely confident that God has been speaking to your heart and you are more sensitive to His presence than you have been previously!!

Growing spiritually is like working out and going to the gym, you get out of it what you put into it!! God does not force His will upon us and we don’t grow spiritually and experience the abundant blessings He has for us; we don’t make knowing God and communing with Him a priority in our life!!

On Sunday we took a look at I Kings 19:1-14 and examined the major transition and contrast in Elijah’s life from I Kings chapter 18. We discovered in chapter 18 that Elijah was on top of the world and when we drop anchor in chapter 19, we find him depressed and afraid!!

We all go through difficult transitions and trials in life where we feel isolated and alone. However, the good news is that God never leaves or forsakes us during these difficult time periods. If we stay close to him and allow Him to minister to us, He will ultimately rescue us from these difficult situations as our loving and Holy Father!!!

We discovered a rich blessing on Sunday by looking at how God graciously ministered to Elijah during his moment of depression and darkness. Depression is a serious mental condition that impacts more than 100 million people around the world. It is extremely serious and impacts people from all walks of life. We see Elijah in I Kings 19, the great prophet of God, wanting his own life to be taken. The good news is God knew what He needed and ministered to him and got him back on the right track.

Elijah experienced the “Manifest Presence of God” even while being depressed!! This is a great lesson for us all that if we can look beyond our circumstances, God is always present and willing to help us if we walk by faith and not by sight!!

I pray you put these practical truths into action in your daily life as you encounter trials now and in the future.

Grace & Shalom!!!

Pastor Perry Stuckey

Rick - Admin ZimmermanUnderstanding the Manifest Presence of God
read more