Monday, August 25, 2008

And the Time Draws Closer...

Hello All,

It has been a few weeks since I last posted anything here, and so in keeping with the effort to update this regularly, here I am once again. The past few weeks have been going by very quickly. I've been working extra hours at work and have also been continuing to campaign rather vigorously for funds that are to go towards my YWAM Training. The Lord has been faithful in providing me support and I trust that He will provide all that is needed when it is needed. If you are reading this and have contributed towards that cause, I thank you. If you are praying for me, I thank you for that also.

The Lord is continuing to prepare me in every way (Spiritually, Mentally, Emotionally, Personally), and is also making my calling and election sure. I have also recently spoken to my School Leader and she informed me that our DTS Break would be over Thanksgiving instead of Christmas. My initial reaction was one of slight disappointment, since I have never been away from my family at Christmas time before. I trust in the Lord though and in the leadership He has appointed at YWAM Nashville. I now see that the Lord must have something amazingly wonderful planned for our team at Christmas time, since such a sacrifice is being required of us. This now excites me greatly.

Another great highlight of recent weeks was the August 19th release of Charlie Hall's latest studio album "The Bright Sadness" and David Crowder's "The Remedy Club Tour" DVD. Charlie's lastest album is his best work yet and I am a huge fan of his previous work. "Flying into Daybreak" was and still is a phenomenal album, but he and the band take it to a new level with "The Bright Sadness." My personal favorites from Charlie's latest album are Mystery, My Brightness, You Are God, The Second Alive, and Hookers and Robbers. Mystery is the hands-down favorite, it is such a simple song but presents the bedrock of our faith. The chorus presents the Truth summized in a simple yet incredible way: "Christ has died and Christ is risen and Christ will come again." Upon those three truths we build all our hope and faith.

From David Crowder's "Remedy Club Tour" DVD, we get an incredible 16 song manifesto of a performance. The DVD was filmed in HiDef in New York City and in Atlanta. From a performance standpoint, it is phenomenal. The production is also top-notch. The extras are a literal treasure trove of information in which we get to hear from ALL 6 BAND MEMBERS about their gear setup, sounds, layering, and effects that are being used in different songs. The On The Road documentary is also a fun look into daily life with the band on tour.

I guess there is not too much to report about life right now as I continue to draw closer to my departure from Kansas City to the Nashville area for training with YWAM. I would, as always, would like to ask you to take a moment and pray for me over a few things as you finish reading this. I thank you greatly for reading this and for your prayers....

1-Pray that I would grow in all wisdom, knowledge, and understanding and that my appetite for the Lord would be ravenous. Pray also for an outpouring of His grace and mercy on me in abundance, I can't go anywhere or do anything without them.

2-Pray for continued provision from the Lord for my financial needs at YWAM. I trust Him implicitely to provide for these needs as He is the One who has called me to this ministry. If you haven't already, please prayerfully consider contributing financially to my training, if that is something you are interested in doing, I will happily give you the necessary information.

3-Pray for my physical, spiritual, mental, and emotional preparation as the time to go approaches. I am organizing e-mails, this blog, and other means of communication to keep everyone informed about what I'm going to be doing at YWAM Nashville and while on the outreach portion of my training.

Thank you all and be greatly blessed,


Thursday, July 31, 2008

What An Incredible 10 Day Journey

I have recently returned from a 10 day journey that involved a substantial amount of time on the road, a great week at a church camp, and a short vacation with my best friend to Chicago.

The journey began on Saturday July 19 as I drove from Kansas City to the Memphis, TN area to meet up with a band I would be a part of for a week-long church camp. This was about a 9 hour trip by the time I stopped for gas, breaks, and lunch. Upon arriving, it was time to meet new people, the band I would be ministering with this week. After church on Sunday July 20, it was off to Panama City Beach, Florida for the week. My friend Trey had put us together and I must say, it was an incredible group to be a part of. Truly great hearts and musicianship all around. Trey, Kerry, Mallory, and was a privilege.

You can't have a great camp without a great camp speaker, and the Lord provided wonderfully in the person of Ben Williams. The camp theme was that of the Biggest Loser, but we weren't talking about a weight-loss competition show on tv. Ben spoke about what it truly means to lose everything for Christ, what church is and is not, and of course, shared/preached the Gospel every night.

The Lord was working powerfully all week, in ways seen and unseen. The Lord brought me 1,000 miles that one student might be saved. Some call it a crazy God thing or something of that sort, I call it a deep honor and privilege to be used by Him in such a way. This student reminded me of where I had been at his age and after forming a relationship with him throughout the week, he received Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior on the last night of camp after the Invitational portion of the service. I got to lead him in that prayer and it was just AWESOME! OUR GOD IS A GOD WHO SAVES!!!

After what had been a great week spiritually, musically, and personally, the week climaxed with an absolutely electric last service of camp. The order of the service looked like this:

1-Everlasting God
2-Your Grace is Enough
3-Blessed Be Your Name
4-We Are Yours

Lifehouse "Everything" Skit

5-Mighty to Save
7-From the Inside Out
9-Marvelous Light (Slow Version)

Message: "The Danger of Not Growing"

Invitational Time:

Grace Flows Down...spontaneous flowing by the Spirit's leading into Amazing Love back to Grace Flows Down into The Wonderful Cross and back to Grace Flows Down

This was one of the most crazy-awesome times of worship I've been part of leading. The Spirit of the Lord was running wild through this place. What a BLESSING!!!

By the Sunday after camp, 5 kids had gotten saved and are going to be Baptized soon. I praise the Lord and thank Him for doing what He did and for allowing me to be a part of it.

And so Friday July 25 rolls around and it's time to drive from Florida to Memphis, and that takes 10 hours. Saturday July 26 and I drive from Memphis to Kansas City, a 9 hour journey. Sunday July 27 I drive with my best friend to Chicago from Kansas City. That's 9 hours as well. So, we hit 9 States in 3 Days...BEAUTIFUL!!!

Chicago was a great time, I made it to Michigan Avenue (The Miracle Mile), The Navy Pier, the Lincoln Park Zoo, The Shedd Aquarium, The Field Museum, and to the House of Blues. If you haven't been to Chicago, you must go, it's an incredible place.

And so now, it's back to work at the Toon Shop. I am blessed to have a job in the music field because outside of teaching in the public school system, they can sometimes be hard to come by. I will work for the entire month of August. I will continue to raise support for my YWAM Training which begins in SEPTEMBER, Approx. 50 days away, WOW!, and at the beginning of September I will make a short trip to Louisiana to see some wonderful friends in concert two nights in a row, spend time with other YWAM people, and to retreat for a few days and focus on the training session that approaches me.

If you're reading this, thank you....I'd like to ask you to just take a minute or two and pray for these few things for me...

1-That I would continue to live in the grace and mercy and love of Jesus Christ, I cannot make it a moment or a day on my own.

2-For God's continued provision of funds for my YWAM Training, I trust Him 100% with this as He has called me to YWAM. He has already provided nearly $1,000.00 of what I need, PRAISE HIS NAME!!!

3-The Lord's guidance about what direction I am supposed to take following my Discipleship Training School with YWAM Nashville which will end in March of 2009.

Thanks, and be greatly blessed,


Wednesday, July 16, 2008

The Inaugural Post

Well, here I am, making my first blogpost. The only thing similar I've done to this is write notes on Facebook, and I haven't really done that too often either. I'm hoping I will make a lot more use of this avenue of sharing my life than I have with other means. The primary reason I've started this blog, is because in the next couple of months, I will be moving to Nashville, Tennessee to begin training with Youth With a Mission (September 20, 2008). I'll be in Nashville for three months, and will then spend two months ministering overseas somewhere. I do not know where yet.

I honestly do not know exactly what's coming up after my five months with YWAM Nashville, but I am excited beyond words to see what God does. I would love to tour playing praise and worship music with a group out of Nashville, I would love to move to my beloved New Orleans and minister there fulltime, perhaps go to Graduate School at a Seminary or good Music School, and there are several other things I'd love to do as well. Whatever happens, I know this, God is the giver and creator of dreams, and He is the fulfiller of those dreams. And so with that conclusion, whatever is coming, MUST be awesome because Jesus planned it.

I guess to wrap up this first of what I hope will be regular posts about what I'm doing in ministry, missions, worship, and much more, this blog will be the regular avenue I use to share about what's going on in life amidst my training with YWAM, as we minister overseas during that time of training and what goes on beyond the chapter of Discipleship Training School. The session begins in September and it will be on my doorstep before I know it....

If you are reading this, I'd like to ask you to pray for me on a few things....

1-Constantly receiving God's grace and mercy, I cannot make it a day without it....

2-The Lord's provision of all that I need to go to YWAM (financial support)....
-I COMPLETELY trust the Lord on this and am believing Him for it because only the Lord
will be able to produce the funds needed to go

3-The Lord's guidance and direction to become apparent for what I am to do after my Discipleship Training School is finished with YWAM Nashville (this will end around March 1, 2009)
-Possibilities include staffing in YWAM New Orleans, touring with a worship band, or it may be a possibility that I have not yet considered

Thank you all for reading,