As busy as some of us get, intentionally or unintentionally, the message comes ringing as a clarion call: "Come apart with the Master and spend time with Him, or come apart at the seams of our faith and bring defeat to our daily walk." The "Near Side" is written so that believers can see in the everyday activities of life the hand of God and make the necessary adjustments to have a daily intimate time with the Lord. The intent of each daily devotional is to encourage all who follow the Master to draw near to Him for an inspiring and reassuring word. I was privileged to be raised by godly parents. They did not just tell me about the Christian life; they lived it out before me. My dad was an ordained minister who served a local church and imparted many of the principles of the gospel I now embrace. My mom was the guiding force behind my approach to living out my faith in Christ. I attended schools in Perry, Georgia, and graduated in 1965. I received an Associate Degree in Ministry from Brewton Parker College in Mount Vernon, Georgia. I was licensed to the gospel ministry in July of 1976; and in 1978, I was ordained to preach the gospel. I presently serve as the Associate Pastor of the First Baptist Church of Haynesville, Georgia and have been on staff for twenty-five years.