Friday, March 31, 2006 

This Thing called Life...

Some days are good days. The kind of day when we just enjoy our lives, jobs, families. Some days are bad days. Days when things just don't seem to go right.

Some days are filled with inexpressible joy. These are the days when we fully realize the true gift of life.

Some days are tough to be alive. They are full of pain that we are not sure we can make it though. These are the days when you don't understand how we can make it to tomorrow.

In all of those days both good and bad God is there. He loves us beyond anything we can possible hope to dream up in our minds. Yet I know that some people will read these words with great bitterness. They say if God loves me so much then why did X happen? Or why did this person do these things? Or insert your question here. My response is a simple one and yet I really believe it. God reaches out to all people everyday. Some have more difficult lives then others but all people everyone have the choice to seek after God or to run away from Him. Let us chase after the Lord. Sometimes we will do so full of Joy and peace. Sometimes we will do so filled with anger and doubt. In both times God is faithful. In both times God reaches his hand out to us and ask us to trust. I think God for this life, both the good and the bad, yet I know that if I will seek after the Lord then I will understand the true gift that life is for all of us.

Thursday, March 30, 2006 

A Parents take on The Prodigal

At this moment in time I am not a parent, yet one of my members constantly comes to me for prayer and advice about responding to choices that there "child" (now full grown) are making despite knowing the Word of God. We found this article and wanted to share it with you. We are not sure of the author but it is from the website.

Loving Your Prodigal God’s Way

When I became a parent I realized that a parents love for their child far exceeds the ability of that child to fully comprehend. And I have come to believe the same is true of our Father’s love. Perhaps when we get to heaven, we will understand the depth of God’s love, but until then, all we can do is speculate. I hear repeatedly about sons, daughters and spouses that have strayed from the path of healthy living and gone instead down the road to addiction. Being exposed to these situations causes me to ask the question, How can I love my prodigal, God’s way? The world is full of philosophies, but what does the inspired word of God say?

In the Bible, we learn that God is the Father to which every family on earth owes its name. Paul said it this way : “For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom his whole family in heaven and on earth derives its name. (Ephesians 3:14, 15 NIV). Being the Father gives God ultimate responsibility for each one of our lives. This, of course, includes the lives of our children and spouses. God the Father sees, far better than we, the need for discipline. Again, if we look to the wisdom of the Bible, we read, “Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of our spirits and live! Our fathers disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in his holiness. No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.” (Hebrews12: 9-11 NIV).

I think that it is important to note that the purpose of all loving discipline is to benefit the person being disciplined with a harvest of righteousness and peace. Remembering this desired result, we will be able to endure the discomfort necessary in the process. We can compare it to the pain that we would allow our child to undergo in having their appendix removed. Granted the child will suffer, but the end result will be healing. We could never expect a young child to grasp this concept fully, but that would not prevent us from doing what is in their best interest, because we love them.

Likewise, God knows what will work best in our lives and allows us to feel the consequences of our actions as part of the sanctification process. Sometimes we inadvertently see God as a cosmic ogre looking over our shoulder waiting to thump us if we sin. This concept is not accurate. While God does promise to execute judgment over His creation for wrongdoing, sometimes consequences suffice. If I tell my young son or daughter not to touch a hot stove and they do, I don’t need to punish them because they will experience pain as a result of their actions. Often times we shield the prodigal from the consequences of their sin and interfere with the discipline of God. The problem is that we will continue to rescue them until their consequences are so big that there is no way they can deal successfully with them alone. The time will surely come when we will be unable to rescue them. At that point we must ask ourselves if we have really helped them at all. Jesus was a Master at the use of illustrations to help us to grasp spiritual concepts. There is a story in the book of Luke about a father that had two sons. It goes like this:

The Parable of the Lost Son

Jesus continued: "There was a man who had two sons. The younger one said to his father, 'Father, give me my share of the estate.' So he divided his property between them. Not long after that, the younger son got together all he had, set off for a distant country and there squandered his wealth in wild living. After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in that whole country, and he began to be in need. So he went and hired himself out to a citizen of that country, who sent him to his fields to feed pigs. He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one gave him anything.
"When he came to his senses, he said, 'How many of my father's hired men have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired men.' So he got up and went to his father.
"But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him. The son said to him, 'Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.'
"But the father said to his servants, 'Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let's have a feast and celebrate. For this son of mine was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.' So they began to celebrate. (Luke 15:11-24)

What can we learn from this parable about loving the prodigal - God’s way?

1. We have to let go. Sounds easy, but it’s not. In fact, it can be excruciating. The father in this story didn’t have to give his son his inheritance before he died, but he did. Why? Because we get to the place with the prodigal where we realize that nothing we say or do is helping. At this point we must trust in the fact that there is a God in heaven who loves your prodigal and He has a plan that right now doesn’t include us. Until you take this step, the road to recovery cannot and will not begin.
2. We can'’t interfere with the discipline of God. We may get a call for help. We must be careful that we are not prolonging the downward spiral that eventually is going to allow the prodigal “to come to his senses. As cruel as it may seem, pain is a necessary part of the change process. It will be amazing to see how much a prodigal must undergo before accepting the need for change. We cannot shortcut this part of the process.
3. We must never give up. Remember that it is God that we are trusting at this point, not ourselves. We have the option to pray for our prodigal, and doing so will help us to cast our burden on the Lord because He cares for us. The father in the story saw the son coming a long way off because he was looking for him. Expect God to accomplish what you could not.
4. We need to be ready to rejoice when it is clear that they are ready to make a life change. Notice the contrast between the intended speech in verses 18 and 19 (I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired men.”) and the actual words spoken in verse 21 ("The son said to him, 'Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.”) you will see that the father was so happy that the son never actually got a chance to complete his speech. It was because the father couldn'’t wait to celebrate. This is evidenced by Jesus words in Luke 15:7, I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent.” While they are rejoicing in heaven don'’t be afraid to join in here on earth.
5. We need to realize that NOW is the time to offer the help we had to hold back earlier. For the returning prodigal there are difficult times ahead. While there are the consequences of sin that he/she must face up to we need to be ready to encourage and assist them as counsel directs. We must do this with caution but we must do this with love. We can talk about the love of Christ “until we are blue in the face,” but now is the time to demonstrate it.

And finally, like every parent, the last thing we consider is ourselves. Have we strayed from our Father in heaven and gone far away? Is He perhaps looking for us from a distance? Maybe we have never “come to our senses and acknowledged our need for Him. Jesus said, Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” (Matthew 11:29). Maybe you have tried that without much success. A well-educated man named Nicodemus tried to come to Jesus on the basis of his knowledge alone. Jesus informed him that head knowledge wasn'’t sufficient to get him into heaven when He replied, “I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again. (John 3:3).

If you would like to take this step, in order to know God more intimately, talk to the person who gave you this, or call us here at the ministry. Remember the verse that we read earlier that said I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent. (Luke 15:7) Why not take this step of faith today and give your heavenly Father cause for celebration?

Wednesday, March 29, 2006 


Luke 5:16 But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.

This past week was one of constant activity. The Tulsa workshop was awesome but it also meant going non-stop. I find myself needing to be still before the Lord. To simply pray and sort though every thing right now. God is good and to be with him in prayer is an amazing privilage. Please don't take it for granted.

I am reflecting on these thoughts:
To read about the life of Jesus is to read of a life filled with activity. His public ministry began with His baptism. Then 40 days of solitude in the wilderness immediately followed. After that, His was a full schedule.

Two interesting observations can be made about the pace of Jesus' ministry. One is that He never hurried anywhere. Jesus was never in a rush. His purpose was so clear that other things were not allowed to put him in a rush.

The other is that He consistently found the time and the quiet to pray. A healthy prayer life needs those two things: time and quiet.

How can you have a healthy prayer life without taking time to pray? You can't. Some praying we do "on the run." It may be that we pray while driving or while working around the house. Still, we need quality prayer time, undistracted by any other activities.

The other need is for quiet. Finding a time and place where you are undistracted is vital to a healthy prayer life. For some, those times and places are easy to find. For others, it is a challenge.

Jesus set the example. He took time and found a quiet place to pray. Will you?

Do you take time to pray? Why not right now? Jesus did. We should also.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006 

Reflections on the Tulsa Soul Winning Workshop

As you can see in my last post the annual Tulsa Soul winning workshop was an interesting event to me even though I had never attended the workshop before. Some had told me that the workshop had gone off into the "deep end" and left the biblical truths behind. Yet some told me about great lessons that had learned about from the workshop and greatly enjoy attedning the workshop each year. The church I preach (The DeQuincy Church of Christ) for has a great set of elders.Each one of my elders had been before and wanted me to be able to go. Here are my reactions to Tulsa this year.

Overall: This year was by far the most controversial of any that they have had the workshop. (Because this is my first time to ever attend Tulsa I can only reply on the comments of others as far as this statement being true.) The controversy lies in the subject of unity between the Christian churches and the Church of Christ. In general (because of the autonomy of the churches associated with each group it is impossible to say this for all churches under either umbrella.) the main difference between the independent Christian Church and the Christ of Christ is instruments. Having said that I will now give a reaction to each evening service at the workshop.

On Thursday night: The Keynote Speakers were Jeff Walling for the Church of Christ and Chuck Booher from the Independent Christian Churches. Jeff took us on a journey of his experience with Christian churches. Walling is a gifted speaker and he is very good at taking everyone along for the "ride" of his experiences. He talked about how as he was working in youth ministry that he became a popular youth speaker and was asked to do more and more talk at Church of Christ events. He was asked to do a certain youth rally for a Church of Christ in the North. He agreed and did not have any idea that the rally was a group of instrumental churches of Christ. As the day got closer he got some calls from some people asking are you sure you want to speak at this? It concerned him and he wanted to back out of the event after finding out that there would be instruments involved. Because it was so close to the event date he asked that they do some songs before he spoke acapella because it would make things more comfortable for him. They agreed and he did the talk. (More about this talk later.)

Chuck Booher shared a heart wrenching story about a Christian family loosing their son and how they ministered to the drunk driver that had killed him.

On Friday night: I learned this night is viewed as the Main event in Tulsa each year. In fact Ruth and I had to be in the auditorium an hour and a half early just to get decent seats. Tonight Max Lucado (who I have never heard speak since becoming a popular author) and Bob Russell a preacher at the largest Christian Church in North America (19,000 members) spoke on the importance of Unity for Christians.

Max Lucado started with a good message about how we need to work together for the unity of the Gospel in order to prevent people from going to Hell. We must reach out together to save the lost. Then he lost me. He went through and named most of the largest churches in his city of San Antonio and talked about how they all played a part in saving the soul of this hypothetical woman. The problem in my mind is that not all of these churches preach the whole gospel. Max also failed to preach the biblical way to salvation. I was disappointed by this because it was obvious to me that he was purposely vague on this point. I can't say for sure but I don't believe that he thinks baptism is an essential part of salvation any longer. If he does think that he sure didn't preach it when he had a chance to.

Now Bob Russell speaks. He starts out and CLEARLY states the way to salvation is exactly what I beleive that scripture teaches. He says you must believe , confess, repent, and be baptized. After the sermon by Max I am excited by Russell's sermon. He then goes on to list serveral things we can do to reach out more effectively to our communities. I like Bob Russell and while I might not like instruments I can say that the man preached the gospel clearly and unashamed.

On Saturday night: This is the final night of Tulsa. Many have already left but I wanted to be a part of the entire workshop so I am still there.

Alan Dunbar preaches first from the Christian church. He preaches a great sermon. He preaches about he we see people that are lost everyday and do nothing to save them. We must use our lives to save people that do not know Jesus Christ.

Marvin Phillips has had a lot of things on his heart. He obviously has the brothers and sisters of the most conservative churches of Christ that chose not to attend on his heart. The man is one of the best preachers that I have heard speak! I was very impressed with his message.

Because Marvin did an amazing job summing up Tulsa I am going to include most of his comments in this post:
Marvin asked several rhetorical questions to the audience and then answered every single one of them.

1. WAS THE GOSPEL PREACHED? Scripture warns us not to "preach another gospel" (Gal.1:8,9); it also reminds us the gospel is "the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ" (1 Cor.15:1-3). Those beauiful truths were emphasized and reaffirmed over and over.

2. WAS BIBLE AUTHORITY HONORED? The Bible urges us to "Preach the word" (2 Tim.4:2); and reminds us we will face God's "open books" in the final judgment (Rev.20:12,13). This was heard repeatedly at the workshop. Some will sincerely say, "yes, but we say instrumental music is 'authorized'; they say it is 'unauthorized'! Which is right?" The key is in the word "authorized"! How do we determine what is/is not authorized? Churches of Christ have traditionally used "command, example and inference" to tell. If a thing has neither of these, it must be unauthorized, and unscriptural". Christian churches, equally concerned with Bible authority have used, "Is it commanded? Is it mentioned? Is it forbidden?" But it is VERY important to note that both "processes" are "human"! Therefore a matter of opinion. We will stand by what the Bible specifically teaches; we will be tolerant in what is "humanly determined". Bible authority was emphasized again and again.

3. WAS THE BIBLE ANSWER GIVEN TO "WHAT MUST I DO TO BE SAVED?" It is true many don't teach "the Bible plan of salvation". Acts 2:38 is powerfully used by "both streams"; the conversions in the Book of Acts are strictly adhered to by ICC and CofC alike.

4. WAS THE MISSION OF THE CHURCH HELPED? Well, "It's all about souls!" (my topic for Thursday afternoon). The Great Commission ( Mt.28:19,20; Mk.16:15,16, Lk.24:47 and John 20:21) is the marching orders of the Church. Jesus prayed for unity "so that the world may believe" (John 17:20,21).

5. WILL THE CHURCH BE CHANGED? Aye, here's the rub. Many are afraid that the church they've always known and loved will disappear. So there are two answers!
(1) NO! We are together on vowing that the church will continue to be what Jesus always wanted and the Bible always taught!
(2) YES! We believe the church WILL change! We will change in that we will STOP fussing, arguing and dividing! "If you keep on biting and devouring one another, take heed that you are not destroyed by one another!" (Gal.5:15)

6. WAS JESUS PLEASED? That's the most important question, AND the easiest to answer.
Of course Jesus was pleased! His closing prayer was for unity of the Believers (John 17:20,21). Scripture further implores us to "make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace" (Eph.4:3). We made fervent efforts to get "the people of God" to unite on the essentials of scripture and march hand in hand for the saving of our lost world!

Overall this was a great event and I was very pleased that I got to go. I didn't agree with everything that was preached at this event but I got alot out of 95% of the Tulsa soul winning workshop. I do think that Unity is very important and I know that my generation of the church will have to do a lot of figure out what unity needs to look like and what things we cannot compromise on. I do believe that I will go back next year to Tulsa. I want to look at things for myself. To challenge them or accept them with my own eyes and ears. I feel blessed to have been a part of this event and I look forward to doing so in the future.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006 

Soul Winning Workshop

Tomorrow morning Ruth and I leave for Tulsa, Oklahoma to attend the International Soul winning workshop. We have never been to this event before. We have heard so much about it and so many different people are going this year. I have learned from some Christians that I know and love that come from a more conservative viewpoint that this event is one that I should not go to. That by my attendance that someone I am doing something wrong. Others have talked about the amazing encouragement that they get from worshiping with 30,000 other Christians. This year at the Tulsa worship is particularly interesting to me. The topic will be Unity. Specifically unity between the Church of Christ and the independent Christians churches. A meeting of this sort is very difficult for two reasons. Neither group is an actual denomination so they have no official people to represent them. It would be impossible to accurately represent both groups. Yet I view this meeting at this point as a positive one. Unity is something that the gospel talks about over and over again. God's wants us unified. As Christians that has been one of our biggest problems. We have been divided on some many issues. So for the next 3 days I will not be blogging but you can expect a super blog next Monday complete with reactions, observations, and lots of pictures. We have lots of friends that we are hoping to run into at the workshop. Pray for our safe travel! I look forward to this event pray that God will be glorified in it!

Monday, March 20, 2006 

Out of your Comfort Zone!

I remember the moment I first stepped off of the place in Dominica for the first time. I was 17 years old and excited to be in a place to share the faith that was still very new to me. I was excited but deep down inside I was scared as well. Scared that when it came time to share the word of God with someone that I would not have the answers. That when someone asked that difficult question that I would somehow fumble and cause them to struggle with faith in Jesus. This trip and several others taught me so much about myself as well as how we cannot afford to be comfortable as Christians. In Dominica we worked all day meeting people, setting up Bible studies, sometimes working along side people. We didn't stop for lunch, we slept on the floor of the church building. The Rastas cussed at us , threw bottles at us, even threatened us from time to time and yet none of that mattered to me. I was there to serve the Lord. It was on this beautiful island that I learned that I could minister to people. I could help bring the love of Jesus Christ to others. I thank God for these trips. So now I share a part of them with you. The pictures start from the high school trips and go to the ones that I went on during college. Check them out and know that this was the place where my dream to be a minister came to life!

Click here for the picture gallery!

Friday, March 17, 2006 

Today I am Irish!

I think it is funny how today everyone has some Irish lineage somewhere in there family tree! Having said that I always enjoyed St. Pat's Day. It is fun and Irish people for the most part are pretty cool! Be careful out there tonight. So tend to have too much fun!

P.s. Yes I know the blog was having trouble today and I am not sure what that was about. I normally don't do anything on the blog during the weekend but I am going to do a special Sat. Edition tomorrow.

Thursday, March 16, 2006 

Cry Out to Jesus...

To everyone who's lost someone they love
long before it was their time.
You feel like the days you had were not enough
when you said goodbye.

And to all of the people with burdens and pains
keepin' you back from your life.
You believe that there's nothing
and there is no one who can make it right.

There is hope for the helpless, rest for the weary,
and love for the broken hearts.
There is grace and forgiveness, mercy and healing
He'll meet you wherever you are.

Cry out to Jesus. Cry out to Jesus.

For the marriage that's struggling just to hang on
have lost all of their faith in love.
and they've done all they can to make it right again
still it's not enough.

For the ones who can't break the addictions and chains
you try to give up but you come back again.
Just remember that you're not alone
in your shame and your suffering.

There is hope for the helpless, rest for the weary,
and love for the broken hearts.
There is grace and forgiveness, mercy and healing
He'll meet you wherever you are.

Cry out to Jesus.

When you're lonely and it feels like the whole world is falling on you
you just reach out, you just cry out to Jesus

Cry to Jesus.

To the widow who suffers from being alone,
wipin' the tears from her eyes.
For the children around the world without a home,
say a prayer tonight.

There is hope for the helpless, rest for the weary,
and love for the broken hearts.
There is grace and forgiveness, mercy and healing
that meets you wherever you are.
There is hope for the helpless, rest for the weary,
and love for the broken hearts.
There is grace and forgiveness, mercy and healing
that meets you wherever you are.

Cry out to Jesus. Cry out to Jesus.

Cry out to Jesus. Cry out to Jesus.

These words move me. They remind me on the pain I have experienced in my own life. If you are reading this and you don't know Jesus you might read these words with some doubt that they could ever be true. All I can say is cry out to Jesus. Ask Him to take your burdens. Ask him to remove the pain and the fear. Let Him lead you to the truth for He is truth. Let His words guide your life. Let His blood grant your the purity that no one can ever hope to describe. I know that Christians (my self included) fail to show this beautiful message the way that we should. Please don't let that take away from your view of who Jesus Christ is for your life.

Now these are not my words they are the lyrics to a song that has really reminded me of so much. They are written by a band that has meant a lot to me over my walk with Christ. TFrom the time when I was a brand new Christian teen looking for some new music to now when I am expected to be more spiritual mature this band has always spoke to my heart. This band is called Third Day. Click here to hear the song!

Thank you Lord for who you are. I cry out to you today and everyday that you would take this sinful man and use him to share you amazing love. May I bring honor and glory to you this day and all the days of my life.

A humbled servant,

Wednesday, March 15, 2006 

Catching up...

This week I was encouraged to get into Several people had encouraged me to do it and so I decided to take the plunge. I was amazed at how fast I started getting messages and responses from people. They have this deal on there where you can put in your school so I decided to do my high school and college. I did and I found people that I had not seen since high school and even a few from Junior high. I have not planned to really develop my whole my space thing but since Ruth took some of our teen girls from the youth group out last night I decided to put a little effort into it. I put some pics on there and even one of my favorite songs. I decided to look at some people from back in high school and even left a few messages. I was really cool to so how well some are doing. I guess I have to say it is sad to see the lifestyles that some are choosing as well but let me say that I felt blessed to catch up with some people from the past. I had been encouraged to get on this at youth minister meeting but let me warn you guys and gals in youth ministry when you do you may find some things that you didn't want to know and pics that you didn't want to see but I do feel like it will help you minister in a more effective way to the teens. I hope you all have a blessed day and for anyone that is reading this from my Clear Creek or ACU crowd ! Hello it is good to see you!

Tuesday, March 14, 2006 

The Beauty of His Strength

What is beauty? I can ask that question to many different people and they will most likely all reply with different answers. For me beauty is so many different things. Today I am focused on the beauty of the Lord.

The LORD is my light and my salvation--whom shall I fear?The LORD is the stronghold of my life-- of whom shall I be afraid? When evil men advance against me to devour my flesh,when my enemies and my foes attack me,they will stumble and fall. Though an army besiege me,my heart will not fear;though war break out against me,even then will I be confident. One thing I ask of the LORD,this is what I seek:that I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life,to gaze upon the beauty of the LORD and to seek him in his temple.
Psalms 27:1-4

The words of king David bring so much peace to my life. Things get pretty crazy on this Earth. So many different things pull at your attention trying to dominate the hours of your day. So much chaos, stress, and yet all the while so many fail to look upward. They may pause from time to time to admire the beauty of the creation and yet fail to see the beauty in the creator. Like David I see beauty in the face of the Lord. I see beauty in the fact that while the world around us changes faster then most can adapt the Lord never changes. He is the same God keeping the same promises never letting us down. We will fail to understand why things happen the way they do. We may experience anger and frustration because of events in this life and yet He will be there prepare to answer our questions and heal our pains. Thank you Father for your beauty, your power, your amazing promises. May more come to know the depths of your Love!

Monday, March 13, 2006 

Movies, Movies, Movies ...

Ruth and I love movies. We can always agree to watch a movie if there is nothing better to do. So I thought it would be cool to find out what some of your favorite movies are. Before I find out,

Here are mine:

My favorite of all time so far: Forest Gump ( I never get tired of watching it)

My favorite action movie: Matrix 1 (How do you like my mini movie ?)

My favorite movie based on History: Saving Private Ryan

My favorite movie that I was forced to watch aka Chick Flicks: The Notebook

My favorite movie that I have watched recently: Walk the Line

So what are some of your favorite movies??
How about responding with a comment listing some like this post! Talk to you soon!

Friday, March 10, 2006 

What are you doing this weekend??

The weekend is upon us and I would like to accomplish two things with this post. First I would like to know who is reading this blog. I have a lot more hits on this counter then I thought I would. So do me a favor. If you read this blog then comment and tell me who you are or if you are one of those private people then just how you came to read this blog and then what are you doing this weekend.

We don't have any big plans this weekend by I am looking forward to some downtime with my wife! Tonight is usually our date night so we might do dinner and a movie but we actually have no solid plans which is kinda nice since we almost always have some kind of set schedule. We are counting the days to the Tulsa Mission Workshop. We have heard so many good things about the workshop are we are looking forward to the time of reconnecting with a bunch of our ministry friends.

In His Love,
Michael Potthoff

Wednesday, March 08, 2006 

The Blessing of Godly Parents

Today I did something that I have never done before. I don't have kids yet so it would be expected that I have never been to a parent/ teacher conference. Yet today some concerned parents called and asked if I could be at a parent/teacher conference today. I agreed and it was really a neat experience. The teacher was really great. Godly teachers are a blessing as well. I am so grateful for parents that care enough about the spiritual life of their child that they ask me to could to try to emphasize the important of the situation. As soon as I walked in the class room the child started to cry. He told me later he was sorry for disappointing me and he was so concerned that I would never look at him the same again. I think today was a turning point for this child. After the conference the teacher even asked me to pray about all of it right then and there. I was honored to do so and really praised God for the moment. So if anyone is reading this and is a parent, involve the ministers at the church with your child's life. I can not speak for all of them but this minister felt like the opportunity was a great privilege. Thank you Lord for Godly Parents!

Tuesday, March 07, 2006 

A Date Night...

One of the best pieces of advice that I ever received from my ministry profs was to always schedule time for my wife/family. Ministry can be a demanding thing and the longer I am in ministry the more I realize two very important things.

1. You have to be willing to say no sometimes. In ministry every opportunity to serve someone or to be at a certain even most likely will have some element of good to it. When I first started in ministry I said yes to everything and I found out very quickly that this takes it toll on you.

2. Have a set time each week where no matter what you will be with your spouse or your family. Ruth and I have a date night each Friday where our congregation has knows that we do have plans on Friday and no we will not break them. They are a few exceptions like an emergency but other then that we faithfully take time for our us each Friday. That is not to say that this is the only time that we spend time together but it is a guarantee that we will have time just for us. Ministers cannot afford to neglect their wife's, marriages, or their families. No one wins when that happens no matter how much time your are spending with the people in your church.

Now last night Ruth and I had a date night because this past weekend we could not do Friday night because we were with our youth group at a youth rally. I really enjoyed this date. We went out to eat. We walked in the mall for a while. We even found one of those picture booths that actually give you real color pics in a small strip with 4 different shots! We had to do it and it was fun! We then went to a movie and played air hockey before the movie. As I am writing this I am thinking to myself now why am I writing each detail of our date. I guess I just had a lot of fun last night and I want to encourage the others ministers that read this blog to make sure and do the same.

God's Richest Blessings

Monday, March 06, 2006 

Renewal 06

This past weekend Ruth and I took a group of teens from our church to a youth rally in Baton Rogue, La this weekend. I wasn't sure what exactly to expect but I was excited to get our youth group reconnected with the youth rallies around the state. They have been fairly disconnected for some reasons unknown to me. I have to say that I was really thrilled. They really connected with this rally. Our the trip back we asked them about the rally and each night as we got back to the places we were staying we talked to the teens about the rally and everyone of them told us over and over again that they loved it. In my mind there was one image that really describes the effectiveness of this youth rally. On the last night during the last talk there was an invitation made for the kids if they needed to rise up and renew there lives. I was at the edge of a pew so I could see clearly down an isle and without hesitation a young girl maybe 12 or 13 got up and went down front to the edge of the steps near the stage then got on her knees and humbled herself before the Lord. It was a striking image to me! What a powerful moment. It was something that I had not seen a lot but I appreciated it in so many ways. A few seconds after she went up several in her group surrounded her and simply placed there hand on her in a great show of encouragement! That is what the body of Christ is all about! Being there for each other when we are hurting! Helping us heal and learn to get past the temptations of this life. Later one of our own teens came forward. He is a young guy that I truly believe is already doing and will do great things for the Lord. I was impressed with this youth rally. The entire congregation poured themselves into this time and it really meant so much to me. Those of you that know me know that while I feel called to preach instead of being a full time youth minister know that I have a special heart for teens. After all when I was lost and knew nothing about the love of God a group of loving teens and adults reached out to me when I was an angry, crude teen that really didn't fit in the youth group. Because of their patience and perseverance I am redeemed by the blood of the lamb! Praise God for church like the South Baton Rogue Church of Christ! I am proud to see what Christians are doing around the state of Louisiana and I look forward to helping our teen grow closer to God on a daily basis. Thank you Lord for shining so brightly during this youth rally!

In His Love ,
Michael Potthoff

About me

  • I'm Michael Potthoff
  • From Lake Charles, Louisiana, United States
  • My name is Michael Potthoff and I am 27 years old. I was raised in League City, Texas (close to Houston) I have a beautiful, godly wife name Ruth who makes me a better man! I have been in ministry close to 5 years now and Jesus Christ is my passion. Preaching His good news is something that I truly love! I am blessed to be able to do something that I truly love.
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