Thursday, April 20, 2006

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Someone Read This To Me Today....Amazing

Psalm 37
1 [a] Do not fret because of evil men
or be envious of those who do wrong;
2 for like the grass they will soon wither,
like green plants they will soon die away.
3 Trust in the LORD and do good;
dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.
4 Delight yourself in the LORD
and he will give you the desires of your heart.
5 Commit your way to the LORD;
trust in him and he will do this:
6 He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn,
the justice of your cause like the noonday sun.
7 Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him;
do not fret when men succeed in their ways,
when they carry out their wicked schemes.
8 Refrain from anger and turn from wrath;
do not fret—it leads only to evil.
9 For evil men will be cut off,
but those who hope in the LORD will inherit the land.
10 A little while, and the wicked will be no more;
though you look for them, they will not be found.
11 But the meek will inherit the land
and enjoy great peace.
12 The wicked plot against the righteous
and gnash their teeth at them;
13 but the Lord laughs at the wicked,
for he knows their day is coming.
14 The wicked draw the sword
and bend the bow
to bring down the poor and needy,
to slay those whose ways are upright.
15 But their swords will pierce their own hearts,
and their bows will be broken.
16 Better the little that the righteous have
than the wealth of many wicked;
17 for the power of the wicked will be broken,
but the LORD upholds the righteous.
18 The days of the blameless are known to the LORD,
and their inheritance will endure forever.
19 In times of disaster they will not wither;
in days of famine they will enjoy plenty.
20 But the wicked will perish:
The LORD's enemies will be like the beauty of the fields,
they will vanish—vanish like smoke.
21 The wicked borrow and do not repay,
but the righteous give generously;
22 those the LORD blesses will inherit the land,
but those he curses will be cut off.
23 If the LORD delights in a man's way,
he makes his steps firm;
24 though he stumble, he will not fall,
for the LORD upholds him with his hand.
25 I was young and now I am old,
yet I have never seen the righteous forsaken
or their children begging bread.
26 They are always generous and lend freely;
their children will be blessed.
27 Turn from evil and do good;
then you will dwell in the land forever.
28 For the LORD loves the just
and will not forsake his faithful ones.
They will be protected forever,
but the offspring of the wicked will be cut off;
29 the righteous will inherit the land
and dwell in it forever.
30 The mouth of the righteous man utters wisdom,
and his tongue speaks what is just.
31 The law of his God is in his heart;
his feet do not slip.
32 The wicked lie in wait for the righteous,
seeking their very lives;
33 but the LORD will not leave them in their power
or let them be condemned when brought to trial.
34 Wait for the LORD
and keep his way.
He will exalt you to inherit the land;
when the wicked are cut off, you will see it.
35 I have seen a wicked and ruthless man
flourishing like a green tree in its native soil,
36 but he soon passed away and was no more;
though I looked for him, he could not be found.
37 Consider the blameless, observe the upright;
there is a future [b] for the man of peace.
38 But all sinners will be destroyed;
the future [c] of the wicked will be cut off.
39 The salvation of the righteous comes from the LORD;
he is their stronghold in time of trouble.
40 The LORD helps them and delivers them;
he delivers them from the wicked and saves them,
because they take refuge in him.

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Why am I here? (long read)

For the longest time I was so enamored with being on staff at a church. I was a kid that was raised in a small religious community. I was very faithfully involved in a small Pentecostal church in the rural mountains of east KY. My father was a coal miner and my mother a very accomplished office manger with an associate’s degree. A very humble beginning to say the least. God blessed me with some musical talent and the ability to sing, and that allowed me to travel at a very young age. I had been singing at different churches around my hometown since the ripe old age of 4 or 5. My brother, mother, and myself had a very tight three-part harmony. I had started to sing in different talent contest within my denomination and won every year from the age of 14 till 18 in voice. That allowed me to go to nationals I also played trumpet from the 6th grade on and won various district and state competitions. I traveled to New Orleans on a bus at the age of 14 (by myself because my parents could not afford to go) to compete at the national level. By age 16 I had performed in front of crowds as small as 15 all the way to 30,000 people with a 5-minute trumpet solo. I had a dream of traveling all my life singing. I had numerous offers for scholarships to go to collage. But I chose to go a collage that offered me nothing; in fact the political church stuff started the day I got to campus when I tried out for different singing groups. This was quite an eye opener for a naive little 18-year-old Kentucky boy. I went to that school because I wanted to be a worship leader. I didn't have a fancy choir at the church I grew up in; we had 40 or 50 people in the whole church! I knew how to sing until we felt the presence of God fill the room. After college I found out that was never what I was hired to do, I was hired to help grow a church or pump people up with emotion, or to simply maintain what was there until another promotion came. I failed. In that I succeeded to be who I was.

Why am I telling you my entire life story? Or least a part of it? Keep reading....

I left this school having been in probably the most talented choir in the entire country, no joke. I was trained from everyone from Boys to Men producer to Geron Davis. I traveled to 15 countries singing and saw many many wonderful things and meet some of the world’s most beautiful people. I left not knowing about what was waiting for me in "The Ministry". I found out the hard way what real ministry is, it is blood, it is sweat, it is tears, it is muddy, it is dirty, it is your neighbor, brother, friend.

I will tell you the most significant truth I have discovered... Nothing has changed since I left that little town of Hazard, KY. All the ideals I had to change the world have crumbled before me. I am still here, alive, with an even greater mission. Relationships with people, raising good kids that love God, and being a friend to anyone who needs one, is all that has ever mattered. Don't love them so you can tell them about Jesus...that is loving with a motive, not cool!! This is the gospel, loving...... simply put .....loving..... just,...loving... Love till it hurts and kills you, and then die sweetly. God does everything else period