<![CDATA[First Baptist Church of Umatilla - Pastor's Blog]]>Mon, 23 Nov 2015 12:25:49 -0800EditMySite<![CDATA[August 05th, 2015]]>Thu, 06 Aug 2015 02:29:48 GMThttp://www.fbcumatilla.org/pastors-blog/august-05th-2015To the people of Lake County:

I am writing today as a concerned citizen of the United States of America. God has blessed me with the ability to raise a family here in Umatilla and along with that He has given me an opportunity to serve this great community for almost 8 years now.  I, like many of you, am very concerned about the direction that our country is headed.  

For years we have been on a downward spiral.  Religious liberty is under attack around every corner, lawlessness seems to be normal for some, morality has gone down the drain, and financially our country is BROKE!!  I don’t know about you, but I am fed up.  Matter of fact, I am fed up with the FED’s.  I am fed up with big government trying to tell us how to raise our kids,  how to run our businesses, how to use our guns, how and when we can worship, and I am certainly tired of them taking  more of our hard earned money to go towards their inflated salaries.  

When is it going to stop?  When are the American people going to join together to say, “Enough is enough”.  I am not talking about a revolution, but I am talking about something that will revolutionize the future for our children and grandchildren.  Years ago and even today many men and women have been fighting wars to protect our freedom to live peacefully, to work happily, and to pray openly.  Right now all of those freedoms and many more are being ripped away.  

Sunday evening at First Baptist Church of Umatilla we had a movie event called “One Generation Away” the erosion of religious liberty.  We had about 750 people in attendance that collectively were saying “enough is enough”.  This isn’t about being Democrat, Republican, or Independent.  This is about being an American that cares about family, faith, and freedom. 

Listen up Lake County, America will never change if you wait on someone else to change it for you.  The time is now to make a difference in this society and it starts by getting involved.  If you want to know more about getting plugged in First Baptist Church of Umatilla is ready to lead the way.  You can stay up to speed on upcoming events and ways to make a difference in our country by following us on facebook and checking us out at www.fbcumatilla.org

It’s time for America to bless God!!

In Christ,

Brooks Braswell 

<![CDATA[Who Built The Ark?]]>Fri, 28 Mar 2014 02:17:41 GMThttp://www.fbcumatilla.org/pastors-blog/who-built-the-ark

Being raised in church we used to sing lots of Bible songs.  One of those songs had a line that said, "Who built the ark?  Noah, Noah!  Who built the ark?  Brother Noah built the ark."  So why in the world am I taking time to tell you about the story of Noah?  Well, just remember the Bible says that Noah built the ark, not Russell Crowe.  The movie Noah is coming to the big screen tomorrow night all around the US and Hollywood is pushing it big time.  Would Hollywood ever promote a biblical film?  Not this weekend.  I am not one to give movie reviews, but when the producer of this film Darren Aronofsky said his film was, "the least biblical biblical film ever made" it made me want to say a few things.

I don't expect Hollywood to be "Holy" wood and make a film that points people to Jesus, but to take the story of Noah and tear it apart is a disgrace to God's Word.  Let me say this, I have not seen the film, but I have read many reviews this week from very respected individuals and they say this movie is insulting.  I wouldn't waste my money to watch a movie that rips apart the truth of God's Scripture.  Some people have used the argument that this film will be "thought provoking" and it will "make people ask God questions".  How will I respond to that?  You don't have to tell a lie to teach the truth and you don't have to focus on darkness to understand light.  Do you want something that is "thought provoking" and will "make people ask God questions"?  Start living for Jesus the questions will come.  Take a person outside and point out the beauty of God's creation.  Share with the WHOLE story of creation, the flood, the rainbow, and Noah that can be found in Genesis, not Paramount Pictures.

<![CDATA[We're DEBT FREE!!!!]]>Wed, 19 Mar 2014 12:38:21 GMThttp://www.fbcumatilla.org/pastors-blog/were-debt-free

Dave Ramsey is a well-known author and financial advisor.  He preaches a message of good stewardship and debt free living.  During his call in show each day he has people scream “We’re DEBT FREE”.  There is a sense of empowerment and joy that you hear from their voices as they yell that statement.  These families or business owners sacrificed many things to make that happen.  Well, FBC Umatilla our journey is very similar.  Our church is over 150 years old and during that time there have been many who sacrificed for the work of the Lord to be done.  This most recent project "Making HISTORY Known" has included a 26,000 square foot building, a 7,800 square foot playground, and a new parcel of land.  The total project reached around 3.5 million dollars.   With God's blessings and the faithfulness of His people here at FBCU we never had a mortgage during this project. This week we finalized the last remaining portion of debt for our new expansion/land addition.  Debt free living in our personal lives is amazing, but debt free living in a ministry means more opportunities for kingdom work to be done for the Lord.   This gives us the ability to dream towards the future.   FBC Umatilla “We’re DEBT FREE!!!  Thank you for your faithfulness to the Lord!  Make sure you share this amazing story of how God used everyday people to accomplish this God sized task.

Praise the Lord!!

In Christ,


<![CDATA[Fight for your right to bear arms]]>Wed, 13 Feb 2013 15:29:48 GMThttp://www.fbcumatilla.org/pastors-blog/fight-for-your-right-to-bear-armsWell, the subject of gun control has been a hot topic for a number of months here in the United States.  Some people are 100% for keeping their 2nd Amendment right in tact, while others say that guns kill people.  Pistols, rifles, shotguns, and assault rifles are all very strong weapons and they can really pack a punch.  There is another weapon out there with some serious power.  This weapon has been sent around the globe, and it most definitely can be found in most homes here in America.  It is easy enough for a child to use and more powerful enough to turn a community inside out.  Even our government is afraid of this weapon, and they are doing anything they can to stop the spread of this powerful, life changing weapon.  This weapon helps with defense against the enemy.  It is be used recreationally with friends and family.  This powerful weapon can also take a full grown man to his knees in a split second.  The unique quality of this weapon is that while it helps kill the old man it brings life to the new man.  So what is it?  Where do I get one? How do I use it?  The fact is you probably already have one.  It's known as the Bible or the Sword of the Spirit.  Hebrews 4:12 says, "The word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword.."  God's word is powerful enough to change lives, heal wounds, and guide our steps.  Our society wants to delete its words and silence its message, so Christians I am sounding the alarm.  Here is the battle cry, "Fight for your right to bear arms."  Jesus died so that His message could bring life, and we have the power within us to change lives with this powerful message of hope.  Owning a Bible is a privilege and a right here in the United States that was given to us by our founding fathers.  We should never take that for granted.  We should exercise our rights and "use it (the Bible) before we lose it."]]><![CDATA[Biscuits, Cornbread, and  The Bible]]>Thu, 07 Feb 2013 16:00:27 GMThttp://www.fbcumatilla.org/pastors-blog/biscuits-cornbreadand-the-bibleHey Everyone,
I guess I should start off by saying, "I'm sorry."  It has been way too long since my last blog.  I don't know about you,  but I like to eat.  I eat out of necessity and sometimes out of want.  Because I live in a
gluten-free home I love eating real bread when I can.  Bicsuits, cornbread, or maybe even a donut.  Have you ever tried to abstain from eating for a day?  For a skinny preacher like me that could be a death wish!!  When you go a day without eating or maybe you just miss one meal you feel tired, unmotivated, and sometimes sick.   Food is needed to help our bodies have energy and food helps us receive the vitamins and nutrients we need to survive.  Jesus spoke a lot about food.  He said that "Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God."  He also said, "Give us this day our daily bread."  So what is Jesus talking about when He references bread?  Biscuits from Cracker Barrell, toast from Old Crow BBQ, or donuts from Krispy Kreme?  He is talking about His Word, THE B.I.B.L.E., The Good Book,The Scriptures.  It is known as the Bread of Life!!  So if we go a day without it we are spiritually tired,  spiritaully unmotivated, and sometimes spiritually sick.  Most professing Christians try gorging themselves on Sunday morning with the Word hoping that it will keep them full all week long, but it doesn't.  I want to encourage you to partake of the Word on a Daily basis!!  It will keep you full, help you focus on ministry, and give your the energy to ward off the devil.]]>
<![CDATA[PUSH!!!!!!]]>Wed, 26 Sep 2012 18:30:31 GMThttp://www.fbcumatilla.org/pastors-blog/pushHey Everyone, I am truly sorry that it has been so long since my last blog post.  I am going to work on doing a weekly update from now on.  About a year ago I received an email with a story about a man who was desperate for God to work in his life.  There was a huge rock in his yard and God told him to go and push against the rock.  Everyday the man would wake up early to go out in the yard and he would push against the rock with all his might.  He pushed and he pushed and he pushed to no avail.  It just seem that God wasn't doing anything.  Over time the man became frustrated with God and he just stopped trying.  One day went by without trying, then the next day, and soon months went by without the man ever doing what God had called him to do.  Sometimes when God tells us to do something like pray, serve, worship, or obey we want to see results from God immediately.  His ways are not always our ways and His answers sometimes aren't what we were wanting to hear.  Prayer is a lost art in our nation.  Public prayer was just a given at sporting events, school functions, and family gatherings.  Unfortunately we have forgotten the importance of prayer in our lives.  Next time that you pray about something and you just don't seem to be getting through to God, remember to PUSH!!  Pray Until Something Happens....  The man who had been pushing against the rock finally realized that out of his obedience to God over the years he had grown stronger.  He learned to persevere through his struggles and he found out that God will never leave you or forsake you.  When life doesn't seem to make sense just remember to PUSH.

James 5:16 "The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much."]]>
<![CDATA[Prepare For Rain]]>Thu, 09 Aug 2012 19:17:55 GMThttp://www.fbcumatilla.org/pastors-blog/prepare-for-rainIn the movie Facing the Giants there is a scene where coach Grant Taylor is challenged by a friend to prepare his fields (the football team) to receive the rain (blessings from the Lord).  Growing up in Lake County has made me appreciate water because I have always lived on a lake.  When we have plenty of rain the lakes are full, grass is green, and things seem to have more life.  It's obvious that we are in a severe drought right now and we are in desperate need of rain.  Our lake has receded out about 30 yards from the end of our dock.  Even though there is no water around our dock we decided to have the decking replaced.  Some would say why waste the time and money to do that when the dock is on dry land and the water isn't even close.  We like to say that we are "preparing for rain".  Our nation is in a spiritual drought.  The signs of the times and the effects of our sinful society are seen everywhere.  So what do we do?  Just give up because the battle is to big and mountain is to tall to climb?  I think we need to prepare for rain or maybe I should say prepare for REIGN, God's REIGN over our nation once again.  God has showered His blessings on America for hundreds of years and now is the time that we prepare our fields to receive His much needed REIGN!!!  What are you doing to prepare your fields to receive the rain that God wants to send your way? 

"Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord." Psalm 33:12]]>
<![CDATA[The Power of Fried Chicken & The Gospel Truth]]>Thu, 02 Aug 2012 18:34:36 GMThttp://www.fbcumatilla.org/pastors-blog/the-power-of-fried-chicken-the-gospel-truthOne of the very first books of the bible that I really studied in and out was the very first book of the Bible, Genesis.  In this book, the story of Joseph takes you on a journey of the good life, hatred, fraud, slavery, lies, imprisonment, and then ends with Joseph having power over his brothers who betrayed him.  He had the chance to legally let them have it, so what did he do?  Genesis 50:20 says, "And as for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good..."  This passage of scripture brings me to our most recent controversy in America..Marriage and Chick-fil-A!!!!  Who'd a thunk it?  A Christian man makes a few statements about his support for biblical marriage between a man and a woman then the media and the liberal world get ahold of it and all hell breaks lose.  Mayors from well known cities speak out in opposition to this Christian owned company, boycotts are scheduled, and hate speech is thrown out.  Dan Cathy's comments go from showing support of biblical marriage to being "anti-gay, a bigot, a hater, and he discriminates."  The media and social networks cause a whirlwind of discussion and millions across this land are not only talking about marriage, but they are also talking about free speech.  It seemed as if the devil was getting his way and that he had the upperhand.  Once again Christians would be silenced and the homosexual agenda would add another feather to their hat.  In the words of a college football sports announcer Lee Corso, "Not so fast my friends."  People of faith and lovers of the 1st Amendment and fried chicken from all walks of life made a decision on August 1st to let their voices be heard and their bellies be filled.  Literally millions across our land were unified on this one issue, on this one day, and at this one place.  There is strength in numbers and it was evident across America that the majoirty believes in free speech, biblical marriage, and fried chicken.  Let this be a testimony to us all that we can make a difference if we join together and we can see what the devil plans for bad turn into "world record" setting days for Chick-fil-a and a historic moment in the life of Americans who have been pushed to far.  Don't mess with my Jesus, my family, or my fried chicken.  And all God's people said, God Bless Chick-fil-A!!]]><![CDATA[Chickens, Chickens, Chickens......]]>Tue, 17 Jul 2012 12:32:06 GMThttp://www.fbcumatilla.org/pastors-blog/chickens-chickens-chickensChickens, Chickens, Chickens…  I never knew that I could learn so much from having chickens.  I guess it was over a year ago the Braswell family decided to get some chickens.  4 turned into 10, 10 turned into 21,  21 turned into 50, and 50 turned into 75.  We had a few casualites along the way because of old age, hawks, the neighbors dog, a bobcat, and a fox.  Things have settled down and we are now at a healthly 47 hens in the coop.  I have learned what a "pecking order" means.  I have learned the term "fly this chicken coop".  I also know a lot about my childhood handwriting "chicken scratch".  Chickens aren’t just farm animals.  They are just like you and me.  They love to be fed regularly.  They like their house to be clean and bug free (except they eat their bugs) and they are constantly working on their relationships.  Some chickens get along while others are always pecking at each other. Do you know anyone like this?  Who is it in your life that ruffles your feathers?  We all have somebody like that.  I knew a pastor that once said, "If it wasn't for people I could serve the Lord."  He was talking about those few "roosters" in the hen house that always want to start a fight or run the show.  God says that it is easy to love those who love us, but we are called to love our enemies, so in the name of chickens everywhere,
 “As for me and my coop, we will serve the Lord."  What about you?

<![CDATA[Born Again Birthday]]>Mon, 11 Jun 2012 19:24:18 GMThttp://www.fbcumatilla.org/pastors-blog/born-again-birthdayI preached a sermon on Sunday entitled, "Born Again Birthday" and it has generated a lot of discussion.  The Bible says that we must be born again.  I had 2 birthday's this past week.  June 3rd I turned 22 years old and on June 8th I turned 33 years old.  Sounds a bit fishy, huh?  Let me clarify.  On June 8th, 1979 I was born for the first time in Waterman Hospital in Eustis, FL.  This of course was my physical birth, but on June 3rd, 1990 at the Radisson Hotel in Orlando, FL I was born again.  That was the day that I gave my life to the Lord.  I remember the sweat on my hands when that preacher gave the invitation and I remember fighting the decision to go forward, but thankfully I went down there that night and gave my life to Christ.  So what's all the talk about with this message?  We all remember details and specifics from different moments in life; first kiss, getting your driver's license, catching a huge bass, etc.  What about your salvation?  Do you remember the place, the time, the date?  Salvation is the single most important day in our lives as a Christian and many people don't claim to remember a thing about it.  I have already had one person call in today because he said all I have known in my life was church, but I never knew Jesus.  He gave his life to the Lord today and June 11th, 2012 he will never forget.  What about you?  Do you know?  I want to encourage you to post a comment about your salvation experience.  Where, When, What???  If you aren't sure a just give me shout and we can talk about it.]]>