Reverend Dr. William H. Curtis

Latest Blog Entries

Make Others Count

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.
Philippians 2:3-4 (NIV)


What injury is your neighbor carrying?

What worry is your neighbor holding?

What needs does your neighbor have?

What fear is your neighbor battling?

What inspiration could help and uplift your neighbor?

What encouragement does your neighbor crave?

God wants us to make other people a central focus of our lives. He blesses us with what we need as we are seeking to be a blessing to those around us. If you give yourself to the betterment of somebody else’s life, God makes sure there’s always somebody who’s around to be a blessing to you.

Some of the important questions that can be asked in your spirit are these: What are the needs of the people around me? Can my lens be shaped to observe them? Can my efforts be pointed to address them?

God invites us to live lives of selfless engagements. By that I mean the ability to practice compassion. To make sacrifices. To slow your life down and put others first. To let what grows inside of you breathe by outside exercise. To make intentional withdrawals from your life. To create space for God to act, through you, in the lives of other people. To make others count.



Study God, Not Self

Seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.
Matthew 6:33 (NKJV)

Anthropology (the study of humankind) does not determine theology (the study of God).

In other words, you don’t interpret you in order to interpret God. That’s the problem in our current culture. People are studying themselves and hoping as a byproduct that they’ll come to an understanding of God.

In order to understand you, you must first understand God.

That’s why in Genesis, it doesn’t say “In the beginning, man…” but rather “In the beginning, God...” God created man in His own image, after His own likeness, and breathed into him the breath of life, and he became a living soul.

You can’t become aware of who you are, the complexities that make up your personality, and the calling that God has bestowed upon your life until you understand God. That’s why He allows difficult experiences and takes you to unpleasant places sometimes in your life. He lets life drag you through certain calamities because He’s trying to stir up the gift that He has placed inside of you.

If you understand God, then you can understand yourself. You’ll realize that no weapon formed against you will prosper. You can’t be mad that those weapons are formed; you just have to thank God that you’re stronger in Him than anything this world brings against you. He’s working it all together for your good because He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.


Transformed, Not Conformed

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
Romans 12:2 (NKJV) 

Every one of us is living between conformation to historical patterns on one side and transformation to imaginative providence on the other.

It’s about conforming to our old patterns, reverting to our old instincts and responses, or surrendering to God, who shows us, as Paul says, “a more excellent way.” It involves renewing our minds and being introduced to greater options. That’s the theological way of expressing it. Now, let me put it in a way that we can all relate to.

We all find ourselves, at times, at a crossroads of decision. The choices are: Do I handle this the way I used to? Or do I handle this in a way that aligns with my spiritual growth? Do I respond to people the way I used to, or do I respond to them with love, knowing that love covers a multitude of sins? Do I default back to my old instincts to deal with pressure, or do I allow the transformative power of the Holy Spirit to lead me toward something more productive? Do I make decisions based on my old selfish nature, or do I truly decide to surrender myself completely to the Lord, allowing Him to use me as He sees fit, and finding satisfaction in that?

It’s a wrestling match between conformation and transformation. One side is nourished by sticking with what has been, while the other side is fueled by being inspired by the prospects and possibilities that are still ahead.

The bridge between conformation to old patterns and transformation to imaginative creativity is faith. Will you cross that bridge in the choices you make today?

How Are You?

“Love your neighbor as yourself.”
Matthew 22:39 (NIV)

Some months ago, I was waiting for my lunch order to arrive. As I was waiting, I was approached by four different individuals, one after the other. Upon approach, each one asked me how I was doing.

When I framed my lips to answer, each one of them interrupted before I could even say anything. One proceeded to tell me about how they had just returned from having enjoyed vacation. Another showed me a picture on his phone of his brand-new car. The third asked me to pray because he was facing a health crisis. The fourth wanted me to purchase an auction item for a fundraiser.

I sat there and indulged each one of them. When the fourth walked away, I said to the waitress, “Uh, is it me?” Not one of them, after asking me how I was doing, postured themselves at any point to give me a chance to provide my response.

So for the rest of that week, I made it a spiritual discipline to ask people, “How are you doing?” and then stay quiet to hear their response. Because we live in a world of self-interest, most people I asked the question to treated me like it was not a legitimate one. But I wouldn’t let them dismiss it as a casual greeting. “No, no, no. How are you doing?”

And the things people began to share!

Jesus challenges us to weigh our spirituality by the offering of our lives, to make our exchanges, our interactions, and our encounters about our neighbors and not always about ourselves. God demonstrated His love for us by making it about us. He gave Jesus because He “so loved” us, as John 3:16 says.

Let’s follow His example and make our lives about loving others.


Your Spiritual Lens

It is because of God that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption.
1 Corinthians 1:30 (NIV)

We should never experience anything in life without discerning the ways in which God has extended both grace and mercy.

I’m talking about in every corner and crevice of your life, identifying where God has been present, active, and where His grace has been extended. This includes the gift of progress and the wonderful experience of healing—in whatever increments, whatever progressions, whatever extents.

What is God saying? Where is He moving? What choices does He think are best for my life? What part of my spirit, my mind, my body is God apparently asking me to sacrifice to Him in this season?

Don’t interpret anything without asking yourself, “Where is God in this? What is God’s involvement? How do I discern why God is moving the way He is moving?”

This should be the lens you use to interpret all of your life experiences.

Make sure that you are interpreting everything in life spiritually first. Because when you do this, it gives correct order and response to all of your subsequent decisions.