Saturday, January 17, 2009

the world is my widescreen

They say that the older you get, the more you realize how important those “unimportant things really are. Like the sound of little sisters’ feet scampering to the door to welcome you home from work. Or the “read me a book!” routine. Little notes in the lunchbox. The smell of hot tea and the sound of a six-string on a chilly night by the fire. We miss ‘em sometimes, don’t we? The big picture, sure, let’s not forget it, but I can’t help but think small blessings in life are like the grease for the gears.

Take my birthday celebration this past week for instance. Were all of the cards loaded down with the green stuff? No, but an original poem, a little jingle, or just a piece of gum taped to the inside can be worth more than a thousand dollar bills. Who says we have to be rich to be happy?

But, you know, one of my favorite things to do is soulwinning on Saturday mornings. This last Saturday, the Lord led me to three young men, in two separate instances, who received Christ as their personal Lord and Savior! What a BLESSING! It’s like one of the most unbelievable feelings in the world to be used by the Lord in the saving of an eternal soul. Wow. You can have your weekends and your wild parties. I’ll think I’ll take the eternal rewards any day.

So, folks, it’s not about what you have, it’s about who you have. First, Jesus Christ. Then the priceless relationships that make the bad days a little shorter and the good ones a little sweeter. If you have them, thank the Lord for them. Cultivate them. And work on being that sort of friend that lends a helping hand without thinking “what’s in it for me?” The rewards of a life focused on what you can give rather than what you can get is life without regret.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Happy New Year!

Yes, it is. Let’s not let the media and the critics and the pessimists rob us of a happy and blessed new year! Let’s face it. There is so much junk out there, you’ve got to literally pick your way through just to find the truth. I don’t know about you, but I think I’ll keep my focus on Jesus, because I’m sure that he’ll be able to handle everything just fine.

Wow. A brand new 365 day set to fill with all kinds of memories. Think about it. At the end of 2009, that’s really all we’ll have to show. What sort of memories will we make? Will we be able to say, “At the beginning of the year, I made it a point to live just a little more for others. Wow, that was one of the best decisions that I could have made.” Or will we say, “Man, I wasted away all sorts of opportunities to make friends, help out, and be an encouragement to everyone. Looking back, that’s a regret that I wish I didn’t have to live with!” As they say, "Jesus, others, and then you."

I had an awesome ’08! I am so thankful to the Lord for giving me those days to use for Him. And I’m humbly grateful for the folks who invested in me during this past year. Dad and Mom, thank you so much for putting up with me, putting that energy into me, and just putting out a positive attitude that makes home one of my most favorite places to be. It's awesome! And a big hearty THANK YOU to all of my Christian family and friends out there who have been there for me even when it came down to crunch time!

But in the end, it’s just like what I preached at the New Year’s eve service at our church. Without HIM, I couldn’t even have poured the milk on my cereal this morning. I wouldn’t be able to whistle ‘Yankee doodle’ or even get out of bed! We are totally dependent on him for everything. All that we did this past year was completely made possible by the Lord, and Him alone. What an awesome God we serve!

There is so much I could write here about God’s provision. About the financial pressure of last summer’s trip (which He took care of quite unexpectedly), about the health concerns of our loved ones (he came though again), and about the gateways of service that He helped us through over the course of those 52 weeks of non-stop action!

While ’08 really showcased how God can work in someone's life, I’m not afraid to say that he’s got a whole lot more planned for ’09. It’s going to be great! As long as we’re staying close in our walk with Him, there’s no limit to what He can accomplish when we’re yielded to His will. Let's keep on praising and Magnifying Him throughout this new year and even beyond!

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Who is this guy, anyway?

If you're like 99% of people in this world, you are a fact gatherer. You need all of the information. You gotta know all there is to know about it before you do anything drastic. That's great news, because you'll read the rest of this thing to find out who in the world I am!

Okay, time for some fast facts...

- Born January 12th, 1990
- Saved September 6th, 1996
- Called into the ministry in the summer of '98
- Parents are missionaries to the military (since '93)
- Has 6 brothers & sisters (Kathryn (husband Matthew, children Matthew & Emily) Jonathan, Sharon, Lydia, Johanna, and Jason)
- Has traveled extensively (45 of the continental 48, Canada, Mexico, and Australia)
- Plays trumpet, baritone, guitar, banjo, mandolin, and violin
- Graduated Pecan Grove Christian Academy (class of '08)
- Attended Capitol City Baptist College for 1 year

*(But for the grace of God...)*

I am nothing more than what God has done with me. I feel unbelievably blessed to have been given a christian home, and for all of you who have one too, thank God for it every day!
My philosophy is pretty simple; There is no such thing as luck. (Proverbs 16:23) God will only do for you what you can't do for yourself. (Matthew 17:27) (Unless you get out of the boat, you won't be walking on water! ) Live for God and let the sawdust fly.
That being said, let's talk a little about what my plans are. Since my call to preach/ministry, I believe that until I get specific orders (location, exact title (Pastor, missionary, evangelist, etc.)), it is my job to PREPARE! God shouldn't have to look at me and say, "You know, I could really use that guy, but it's going to take him 5 years to get ready if I tell him what he's supposed to do. This ain't gonna work!" I want Him to be able to say, "Well, lookee there, He's all fired up and ready to go. When I say the word, he'll be on it. No ands, ifs, or buts."
So, I'm doing everything I can to make sure that I am ready when The Lord gives me the nudge.

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