Here is the sermon I preached at New Vision Church on Sunday. May you find encouragement and hope for the future!
Yes. The Panthers lost and I am sad about their poor performance. Everyone has days like that when things just don’t go your way. The Panthers were just outplayed and outmatched for the entire game. Hats off to the Broncos and Peyton Manning for a great career! Hopefully the Panthers will learn from this experience and become a stronger team next year. Now onto other things :)
The Love Feast
We are hosting the first Love Feast this coming Saturday at New Vision Church from 9am-6pm. There’s no food since we will be fasting during this time. Our gathering will be to become more informed about poverty and social issues around the world and mission opportunities, we are involved with in El Salvador and India
We are asking people to consider praying and fasting from Friday lunch until Saturday 6pm. This will make 30 hours. We are also encouraging people to give $1 per hour or solicit donors for this amount equalling $30. This money will go toward helping children in El Salvador who are deaf and of families who have been affected by gangs in El Salvador.
The Love Feast in NC will begin on March 4 at noon and end at dinner March 5. We will meet at the Korean Church on Saturday March 5 from 9am-6pm for times of prayer and teaching.
I’ve recently purchased my ticket to travel to India. I am still seeking donations toward this trip, as the costs of travel and mission work is costly. My plan is to be there for two assisting with the WAVE team, hosting a conference for them, where we will basically sponsor the event with name tags, papers, food and travel for some to get there. I will also be working with the orphans and with the churches (7 of them) along with discipling some of the students during my stay. We will also begin our plans for setting up a local radio station for the church to broadcast the gospel and determine the place and dates for the summer camp we will host this coming August. So there’s a lot to be done on this trip. Thanks for your prayers and support!
New Vision Church
Some of you may be aware that the pastor of my church has stepped down from the senior pastor role and our church is transitioning in many ways. During this time, I’ll be helping more with some speaking and of course any other way I can outside of my “normal” responsibilities. Please keep our church in your prayers and all of us as we seek God’s direction and what our next steps should be as a church and individuals.
Lent is the 40 day period that many Christians mark between Ash Wednesday and Easter. That period starts on this Wednesday and goes until Easter Sunday (minus the Sundays in-between). I usually give up something during this period. I would encourage you to also consider doing something of significance during this period as a discipline of sacrifice and surrender. Here’s the thing: don’t do it to out of pride or trying to become spiritual. Practice this because of love and desire to draw closer to God.
Right now we have several things in the works for the summer. Here are the things we are fairly sure about and the approximate costs. If you would like more information, please contact me.
May 31- June 13 El Salvador Cost $1500
July 6-10 Kentucky Cost$100
July 15-23 George Camp Miami Cost $200
July 28- August 10 India Cost $2500
Please note that these dates are subject to change and so is the cost. However, please also note that if you are serious about traveling with us on any trip, we will do all we can to assist you in raising the needed funds to go. There has never been a trip that someone has wanted to attend with us who didn’t go because of finances. So please, let us know if you want to go and are willing to commit the time.
It was a busy but great weekend! Thanks for your prayers concerning me and all the travel and events unfolding over the last couple of days.
Conference In Miami
On Thursday I flew to Ft. Lauderdale to get into town a little early for the Becoming a Woman of Influence conference. Many have wondered what was I doing at a conference like this. Here’s why I was there; I was invited.
A friend of mine os a pastor at New City Church in Miami, Fl. His kids attend Christ Fellowship Academy and they have all seen me perform many times at their school for Spiritual Emphasis Week. So when Joe, the pastor/dad/my friend saw me perform several months ago, he asked me if I would come and be part of the event. Because of my “deal” with God, I don’t turn down any event where the door has been opened and I have an invitation, especially from a friend. So that’s how it came together. I was honored to be the only “male” guest speaker at the event.
There were about 100 attending this conference from several churches in Miami. It was hosted at the Sheraton at the Miami International Airport and let me say what a great time I had being there! New City Church and the team who put this together did an exceptional job of not only maximizing the venue space but caring for me as a guest/speaker and providing what I feel was also a great lineup of other guest speakers for the ladies to learn from and be encouraged by in their growth of influence.
I was at the conference to share a few songs and then some words about how God has influenced my life and brought me to where I am today. My songlist included the Lawnmower Dance, Shark Song, Awake, No One Like You, Watch The Lamb and Jesus Paid It All. God removed my apprehensions and gave me peace as I shared and it really went well. There was a great sense of community and I didn’t feel out of place, which was nice given it was geared for “women”, which goes to show that when we do whatever we do for the glory of God, He will bless it and use it.
Thanks to my friend Pastor Joe Mira and all those at New City Church for investing in the lives of the women of Miami. You guys did an outstanding job this weekend and were a blessing to all of us involved…even us “guys”. Also a special shoutout to my good friend Mike Liebler who was driving me around over the last few days and making sure I made my appointments. And the Gallos who hosted us during my stay.
Wedding In Atlanta
When I agreed to do the conference for Joe in Miami, I failed to remember and check my multiple calendars. This caused a little scheduling conflict as Henry Bruce had notified me of his upcoming wedding on the same day. When I realized this, I called Joe and thankfully he was able to arrange the schedule so I could get a ticket back to GA without having to miss Henry’s wedding, which I certainly didn’t want to happen.
With God’s hand at work, I was able to make it see another one of my “children” get married on Saturday evening. This was not without its challenges however. When I got to the check-in kiosk, I couldn’t seem to do so. After numerous attempts, I went ahead and stood in line to speak to real person.
After waiting in the que for about 10 minutes, the lady informed me that the flight had already closed and that was why I couldn’t check in. She told me that they want people like me there an hour ahead of time and I had gotten to her 45 minutes ahead of time. Really? Ugh. So now we were having to look at rebooking me etc.
She put me on the list for the next flight but told me to go to the gate for the flight I was originally booked on and see if I could make it. So I did with haste. As life would have it, my terminal and gate were on the far side of the airport, requiring me to have extreme patience in the TSA line and on the SkyTrain as I made my way to D-60!
Once I got there they were still boarding the flight so I jumped in line. The ticket I gave the lady was not for that flight, which I knew and I explained to her what happened. Then she passed me off to another guy who looked up some information and told me that I never had a “seat” confirmed on that flight. Really? Wow!
Now he tells me that I have a confirmed seat on second flight but I was put on the standby list for the first one. So I sat and waited and had to trust God to get me on the flight. And He did. Within a few moments, they called my name and another woman, who ended up sitting right next to me to take the last two seats on that flight. Praise God!
So that’s how it worked out. I made it back to celebrate with Henry and Lauren as they joined together in God in holy matrimony. It was a wonderful wedding and a joy to be there with them in this life-changing event.
Henry was one of my students in youth group at Bethany Baptist Church many years ago. He was also part of our sign WAVE team there and at The Point. Henry traveled with me on a few mission trips including one to Florida for George Camp. He’s always been a faithful friend to me and the ministry and always served well regardless of his role. He loves to sing and has made it known on various trips like the ski trip to Winterplace :) You can watch that video here:
Henry has a passion for life and a passion for God. But He also has a passion for the love of his life, Lauren and I am so happy for the both of them as they embark on this journey together! Henry has gone on to learn sign as an interpreter and works at a local school in GA with the deaf. What a great circle to the investment of Vision 2 Hear. I am grateful for what God has done!
It was also awesome to catch up with these fine folks at the wedding reception. Some of them I have not seen in years, while others I recently saw at Krista and Carey’s wedding a couple of months ago. I have resigned myself to the truth that now I will see most of these people at such events as weddings as they have all grown up. Where has the time gone? It was great to see you all and I love and miss you guys. Thanks for being such a blessing to me and part of the V2H family! It’s people like you and all the others who have made my life so special.
Preaching At Church
The weekend concluded with me preaching at my church in Fayetteville. With my pastor recently resigning, the church had asked for me to cover a few Sundays as they put together a search committee etc. So this weekend I launched a 3 week series called Awakenings.
With no surprise to those who have been part of my ministry, we had many technical issues leading right up to the beginning of the service. From trying to understand why the screen color was “pink tinted”, to trying to hook up my “Mac” to run from the back, to getting the signals set for a scenario for me to run it from the front, to transferring 50 slides to another computer so someone else could run it, everything finally came together with about 5 minutes to begin. But it came together, at the last moment, right on time, which seems to have been the case for all things concerning this weekend.
God moved in the service and removed my apprehensions of speaking; and for that I am always grateful!
In Other News
Angela is back from El Salvador and I am waiting for her to send me a little note about her experience. Once I get it, I’ll send it out so you can hear about how this trip shaped her life.
Also, I’ll be making a definitive decision about India this week. As you may know I am supposed to head out on Feb. 16 but I have not generated enough support yet for the airfare. So will see. This may be God saying wait. So I’m praying over the next day or so to see what all happens. Of course, they would like for me to be there but I also have many irons in the fire here to take care of and deal with. So please pray God’s will be done. I’m willing to go or stay…whatever I need to do.
If you’d like to give toward this trip, or any other mission project, you can do so at vision2hear.com or just follow this link: paypal
Thanks so much! Catch up with you next week.
Another week has passed and here is some of what has been happening around Vision 2 Hear. As you may know, I recently returned from El Salvador. Upon leaving, I gave a little cash to Jorge to help with some work and celebration happening in Suchitoto as they would go this past weekend. From these pics, one can see they had a great time. We are grateful to be a small part of the larger work going on there, supported by friends from Oregon and Jorge and his family and ministry.
Vision 2 Hear El Salvador is helping this community with fresh clean water in conjunction with individuals from Oregon. We are also helping with ministry to all ages as seen in the pics above by providing school supplies, helping with education and discipling in Jesus’ name. Please continue to pray for our partners in ministry in El Salvador.
This event is coming soon and we need your help to make it successful. We are trying to generate support and help for many in El Salvador this season. There’s no greater time to show love than around Valentine’s Day!
Each year, Americans spend billions of dollars to express love. This year, why not share some of that love with kids from another country? We are challenging everyone to donate $30 toward the Love Feast, which is out 30-hour fast to raise money and awareness of needs around the world.
This year our efforts will go toward helping Daniel and paying his college fees, helping children from families of gangs and helping some of our deaf students. All of them reside in El Salvador. Please consider giving and participating in the fast during one of these weekends: New Vision Church February 12-13 or Havelock Korean Baptist March 4-5.
If you would like to make a charitable gift, you can do so by mailing a check to 2046 Khyber Pass Snellville, GA 30039 or giving online at paypal.com
WAVE Teams Are Back
All of the WAVE teams are back for a new season and things seem to humming along well. With teams in Hixson, TN, Lawrenceville, GA and Havelock, NC, WAVE is putting together it’s spring selections surrounding the theme for the year, AWAKEN. We are very excited about the launch of the new season and songs and anticipate God speaking to us and through us as we share. Continue to pray for the sign teams as they grow and go in Christ’s name.
What’s happening this week?
I’ll be leaving NC on Wednesday to go back to GA for a night. I fly out to Miami on Thursday to prepare for a conference where I was invited to speak and share music.
The Becoming A Woman Of Influence Conference is being hosted by a friend of mine from New City Church in Miami, Fl. The event will focus on inspiring women to take their God-given abilities and using them for God’s glory. I am privileged to be the only “male” speaker.
Then next Sunday I start a 3-week series called AWAKENINGS for my church. Our pastor recently resigned and so I am filling in speaking for the next three weeks. The series will follow the course of awakening faith. hope and love. I am excited and grateful to have the privilege to speak at my church. Please pray for New Vision Church as we transition and move forward into the great unknown.
The TN Movement has made steps toward becoming their own entity. Under the leadership of Terry Davis, longtime friend and board member of Vision 2 Hear, terry is also the pastor at the TN Movement.
For several years the gathering has met in a storefront location but recently outgrown it. For a few weeks now they have been praying, looking for and seeking out property to help in reaching more people for Christ.
I spoke to Terry last week and he informed me that a local church has offered to give them their church…yes “deed it over” to Vision 2 Hear and the TN Movement, along with their van and whatever funds were still in their bank account. That church had decided to dissolve and wanted to give it to another church. We praise God for his miraculous works! Continue to pray for the TN Movement as they process the paperwork to become an official church in TN and move forward with the doors God has opened!
A trip to India has been scheduled but of course, it’s not possible without generating the needed funds to make it happen. Over the course of the next several days I am trying to generate about $1200 toward the trip which would include airfare and money toward hosting the WAVE team conference for the children at S.A.C. in India. If you would like to help with this trip, please follow this link to give using paypal.com
Thanks! Update coming again next week!
What do you expect from God today? It could be any number of blessings. But there is no greater or more glorious gift than God giving Himself to us. Today as you journey through life, be expectant to see God in new a wonderful ways and remember it’s God giving Himself to you.
Comment back on how God has shown Himself to you lately.