This past Sunday I was absent from my pulpit at Mt. Sinai. I preached for another congregation. This is something that rarely happens over the course of the year. And it even more rare that I am absent from my own pulpit to preach somewhere in the Los Angeles area. If there is any place I would be preaching on a Sunday besides Mt. Sinai, it would be Mt. Moriah Baptist Church, where my pastor (Dr. Melvin V. Wade, Sr.) serves. There are very few others places that I would go to on a Sunday morning. But this past Sunday, I had a debt to repay. So I went to preach for Pastor Richard Sanders and the Mt. Pilgrim Baptist Church in Compton (seems like a lot of “Mt.” churches in this paragraph, huh).
Some years ago, in the late nineties, I did a message on gambling. And for several years, Pastor Sanders has asked me to either send him that manuscript or come preach that message to his congregation. I think I finally sent him the manuscript. But he told me that he needed me to come and preach it for him. And we had been trying to get our schedules in sync for some time, without much success. But earlier this year, he mentioned it to me again after a meeting. And I felt so guilty about my failure to set a time to come to him, that I told him to just name a time and I would come. And he did. And it was on a Sunday morning. But I felt it was right for me to go. So that’s where I was this past Sunday. I was at Mt. Pilgrim Church preaching against gambling. I pray that it was helpful. The congregation is filled with young adults. And the church facilities are located about a mile away from a new casino that has been opened up in Compton.
I first preached for Dr. Sanders when I was fifteen or sixteen years old. And over the years, he has been a consistent friend and helpful mentor. And he is a whale of a preacher. My goodness, that man can flat out preach. I appreciate the fact that he took me under his wings, when I was still just a boy preacher. And he has not changed his mind about me over all these years. Mt. Pilgrim is a great church. And it was a joy to be in worship with them again. God is still doing great things through this local church. And I pray that the Lord continues to use Dr. Sanders and the Mt. Pilgrim Church to be a lighthouse in the Compton area, and beyond.