I’m glad October finally left us. It was the 5th longest October of my life. I am blessed, I have a great wife, God is good, blah, blah, blah - can we talk? All of that stuff is true but if we say we don’t struggle we are only wearing the mask and faking it.

I don’t know about fake news, but I know there are false Christians because the Bible talks about them (1st John 2:19). That’s not a condemnation just an observation and a prayer request that these people would find hope in the guy who was born in the barn.

I love the small, rural community I grew up in where I played football for my hometown Tigers. I was not very good. They retired my No. 82. I think it’s because they are too embarrassed for anyone else to wear it.

I love football, and I love my Tigers, so you would think that would be a great marriage, but it wasn’t. In fact, while I was on the team I often wonder was I really on the team, was I really a football player or was I a fake. A guy with a jersey and a number, but no real status. Does that make sense? For some reason, my heart was just not in it. It was about positioning, the way bankers and lawyers used to go to the right protestant church. It was for business reasons, networking, whatever you want to call it. If you didn’t play football, you didn’t get the girls, at least not the right girls.

When I was a rookie pastor, we had an older woman that had been in the church forever. She was old enough to be my mother and served in several different leadership positions. She “walked” the aisle one Sunday morning. I was green, therefore unsure of what to do but I asked her if she needed to make a “decision?” She shared she needed to “commit” her life to Christ. I thought “recommit” but she was adamant that she was receiving the Gospel for the first time. She was different after that, no doubt proof of her salvation.

Not long after that a man who had become a good friend made the same walk, down the same aisle and actually told me he had been “faking it.” He too was acknowledging Christ as Lord. Subsequently, both of these people were baptized (after all we were at a Baptist church).

It’s why that guy was born in the barn. It’s what I get up for in the mornings — that and I like coffee. He told me to tell you that.