Last Day in Town – San Diego

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  • I have one more message to preach tonight at Bayview Baptist Church in San Diego. Then I will be on my way home. Yippee!!! I am so homesick; I don’t know what to do. I woke up this morning and began packing my bags, even though I am not scheduled to leave until tomorrow morning. Usually, I pack an hour before it is time for be to leave. But I am really anxious to get home. Now, this is not a statement about Bayview Church in any way. I have had a good week here, ministering to this great congregation. And I have learned so much by spending time with Pastor Winters. He has been quite generous with me in sharing his godly wisdom and pastoral insights. I am not sure why Pastor Winters is so moved to show such kindness to me. But I am truly grateful for it. I am not sure, however, that my preaching has fulfilled his expectations this week. This is Bayview’s “Next Level Celebration,” which is a part of their capital campaign for the new building they are seeking to build. And I think that pastor wanted me to preach some messages around that theme. But I didn’t know that until I was two messages in. And by then, I was headed in a certain direction and it has been hard for me to change courses. I hope this has not been to much of a disappointment to pastor. And I pray that the congregation has been ministered to through my messages.

    I miss Crystal and the kids, desperately. I have been on the road quite a bit this past month. And I long for my family, my home, my bed, my study, and my congregation. For young pastors and preachers who think that traveling to preach is some glorious thing, think again. It can be quite lonely, frustrating, and taxing. I feel that way this week. And I look forward to getting home tomorrow, God willing. I am scheduled to preach tomorrow night for our National Day of Prayer Service. I intend to preach on Psalm 119:49-56. I am labeling the message with an exhortation, “Keep Trusting God When Trouble Comes.” I was supposed to preach this message last Wednesday night, but I did not attend the service. I was really too tired and distracted to preach, which has rarely happened to me over the years of my pastorate. But thank God that I may get another shot at it this week. I miss preaching to my own congregation. It has been a week and a half since I last stood in my pulpit. But it seems like it is much longer than that. Also, some things have come up this week that I have had to deal with that I would rather not be having to deal with on the road. It has been kind of distracting from my preaching assignment. But the Lord has been faithful, as always. And I trust that he will bless me to faithfully preach my final message tonight and then get home to my family and congregation. Pray for me.


    H.B. Charles Jr.

    Pastor-Teacher at the Shiloh Metropolitan Baptist Church of Jacksonville and Orange Park, Florida.