Posts Tagged ‘Christin Joy’

My Daily Prayer

Not one day goes by that I don’t pray for you. You are always on my mind and in my heart. I’m sorry I ever hurt you. I won’t ever give up on you.

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“And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works…”  Hebrews 10:24

There is so much going on in the world and in our surrounding community. God turned my heart onto serving and loving others 5 ago and it has become a big part of my life and who I am. As I served, I realized I couldn’t do it all myself. I started to challenge others to do something bigger than themselves and join in with me in seeing these different ministries and charities. I would invite them to come serve in the community with me. I even started this blog site to do the same thing, challenge others to live an epic life. Not too long ago I met someone special who had the same heart as me. After surrendering her old life to Christ, she started a ministry called Contagious Hearts. Through inspirational videos, this website encourages those who watch them to join in the many great causes and organizations out there that are already doing amazing stuff in our surrounding community and in our world. I was blown away by her heart for people. I was even asked to partner with her and to join our hearts together to encourage others together. We were a force to be reckoned with and we wanted to allow God to use us as examples to others. I am sadden and disappointed that none of this came to fruition, but thought I’d still promote her site and let others visit it and to allow their hearts to be moved.

I was challenged awhile back to paint, so I thought I’d give it a try

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“Many of you still have some illusions about life, but you’re also beginning to see many things which are disillusioning. Now the Word of God is designed to correct all that, and it is on the basis of the Word that I’m going to set forth certain principles which may or may not mean much to the younger people at this time. Perhaps you do not know as yet what it’s like to be with your right man or your right woman – that you can have a fantastic relationship spiritually, soulishly and physically, with the person designed for you in eternity past – even though everything else in the world may be going wrong.” – Thieme

When right man and right woman have God centered, they are an amazing picture of God’s design

 Love is spontaneous, but it has to be maintained through discipline. Chambers

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Good Friday

Worship service in the Student center

Cornerstone hosted a Good Friday worship service. They held it at noon in the student center. What an amazing sight to see many come out on their lunch breaks to give thanks to the Father. Thanks to Ryan and Brain for putting this together.

Later that evening, we attended a Friday night service at Redemption church. It was a beautiful outdoor setting at the Gilbert campus. It was awesome to see 3000+ come out to worship under the stars and give thanks to God for giving His son to die on the cross for us. Pastor Justin spoke on how much God loves us to do this for us. I love the illustration he gave about God even giving His son despite those that reject and turn away from Him.

So what does life look like beyond Easter? When the busy week comes upon us, do we stray and forget about the cross? How do we live our life for Christ day in and day out so we don’t have to constantly live for high moments in order to correct our paths when we drift?

All church Friday night worship service at Redemption Gilbert campus

For Easter, Christin and I served at Cornerstone Saturday night. We met up with our mothers and attended service later that night. Cornerstone had this “Egg your City” theme in which they used eggs to help promote the Easter service. The cool thing is that they also challenged those that attended to “Change the World”. They asked if we would donate $15 to help clothe and feed a child in India. Cornerstone has a strategic partnership with Harvest India and there is a huge need to feed these orphan kids. The goal was to feed 2500 children. Between the 6 services, people stepped up and sponsored over 4300 children ($63,000). Praise God!

I loved how Pastor Linn tied in the feeding of the hungry with an Easter message. What we believe in is a big deal. Deep down our hearts are hungry for something and we look to the wrong things to fill us. The majority people in India are Hindu. In Hinduism, they believe in karma and this idea that we get reincarnated into something better in the next life if we live out our lives well. Well.. we need something more to satisfy our hunger because the result from us filling it with worldly stuff (accomplishments, relationships, etc) produces bad fruit like worry, anger and pride. These things will build a wall that will separate us from God. We need to make contact with God and let Him fill our hunger and deepest needs. Christ is the bread of life and if we believe, we will never go hungry or thirsty.

Jesus answered, “Very truly I tell you, you are looking for me, not because you saw the signs I performed but because you ate the loaves and had your fill. Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. For on him God the Father has placed his seal of approval. John 6:2-27

Earth Day

Good Friday was also Earth Day. I saw it as a day to celebrate God’s creation and how we need to take care of it as inhabitants of this Earth.

Lent – Week 6

Final week of lent. I have really enjoyed using the resources of World Vision ACT:S as I participated in lent this year. The information they provided really got me in tune to the world and the need out there. God has really made my heart ache for those in poverty and how I can be used to be a voice for those that don’t have one. Please pray and consider how you can be an advocate and be a part of creating a modern-day book of Acts of living.

This is Romeo. He is one of many growing number of street kids that are roaming around Albania. His family left him and he was forced to live life on his own around the age of 12. He is often ignored by those passing by as he has to beg and steal in order to eat and live. There have been many times I have felt forgotten or left out. In fact, I have done this to God – forgotten about Him. Yet, God never leaves me and is always there. This gives me hope that we are never forgotten and that He will use us.

A great example is the shepherds in Luke 2: 8-11. Shepherds were forgotten people in their society back in biblical times. Yet God used them to spread the news to them of Jesus’ birth. How awesome is it that a great host of angels appeared to them that Christmas morning to proclaim the birth of Christ. God then used their excitement to spread the news to others. God will use anyone for His purposes.

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come. All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God. 2 Corinthians 5:17-21 (NIV).  

Jesus came to this broken world to be one of us. Because of what He has done for us, we have the opportunity to partner with Him and be a light to those that know Him. Imagine if instead of ignoring a street child like Romeo that we give him food and shelter. What a way to impact someone who needs to see and know the love of Jesus. God has called us to be missional and to seek justice for His people. I want that for my life, to see the world the way Jesus did and to love on others the same way He has loved me.

May we bless the world with comfort. Comfort when a child is suffering and no parent can help, so that we may become the arms of a God who heals. Amen

May we bless the world with peace. Peace for the persecuted and those who struggle to provide, so that we may become the feet of a God who brings good news. Amen

May we bless the world with love. Love for the ones who only encounter the demons in others, so that we may become the heart of a God who feels every human affliction. Amen

May we bless the world with wisdom. Wisdom to pass wisdom, so that we may become the mind of a God whose dreams become reality with the breath of a word. Amen

And the blessing of God, who provides comfort, peace, love and wisdom, be upon us and all that we love and pray for this day, and forever more. Amen

Today marked the end of my 40 day only drinking water as a beverage campaign for Blood:Water Mission. This year it was a lot easier for me to give up my morning coffee. I either really don’t need it or God is really working in me. But this lent season was very impactful for me as it came at a time that God is refining and restoring me to be who He wants me to be. I am grateful for the prayers and support from everyone while using this time to learn more about myself and drawing closer to God. God is working!

Pumping a water well after dedicating it in India - a huge blessing for me!

The work that is being done in Uganda and others parts of the world have really been inspiring to me to learn more about water. I have always had a heart for these water wells and how they can provide clean water for an entire village for very little money. God has really taught me a lot through Blood:Water mission about how much water we waste here in America and how we take it for granted. From not drinking coffee and tea for 40 days, I saved $105 and I will be donating that money to help fund water projects in Uganda. Please read this inspiring story of how God is working in Uganda here.

Oh coffee. How I missed you..

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Mat Weddle sings songs off his new CD

When I was thinking of writing this blog about Obadiah Parker’s show, it was just going to be a short blog about my friend Mat Weddle and his new CD that just came out. Mat had given me the CD not too long ago and I really enjoy it (Mat is an extremely talented musician and I love seeing him play). Tonight was his CD release concert at Winfield’s cafe at First Baptist of Scottsdale and I was totally in for another great show by him. But what I wasn’t ready for was to be really moved by lyrics and the stories that Mat shared about each song. You see, Mat and I share a lot of the same struggles as men in this world and over the years we have become accountability partners for each other. So hearing the stories behind these songs all of a sudden made this album very special to me. I now truly view it as a gift from a friend that God provided to go on this crazy battle against our addiction with. The Siren and the Saint is our story.

I met Mat at Camber (a young adult group at our church) in 2006. Of course what drew me to him was the big red beard, but he quickly became a good friend. One of my earliest memories is a night after Camber where we and Ryan Axtell sucked down about 7 or 8 strawberry lemonades each. Our waitress was not happy with having to blend those up for us. I got to know both him and his wife Lisa pretty well at Passion ’07 in Atlanta (which is where they met). I would then spend the months following that attending his band Obadiah Parker’s shows at various venues here in the valley. Later that summer, Mat shared his testimony about his sex and porn addiction at Camber during their “We will not Talk” series. I was absolutely blown away that someone would get on stage and admit this in front of a large crowd – especially someone as well-known here in the valley as Mat.

That following winter, God brought me face to face with my own lust and sex addiction issues. I was so embarrassed and ashamed that I went into hiding. I avoided my friends and church for a whole month. Then in January of 2008, I returned to Camber and they had a guest speaker by the name of Keith Page speaking. Keith was a Pastor of a large church in California called Rock Harbor church. After planting that church and serving as head Pastor, he was asked to step down after his own struggles with lust came to the surface. It was a situation which almost cost him his marriage. But in the mist of hitting ‘rock bottom’, Keith discovered God was redefining him and using this issue for something more that would eventually humble him and free him from this deadly sin. And now Keith travels the country sharing his story of strength and hope to others. He talked of our need for brothers and sisters in Christ that will refrain from judgment to do this journey with together to find freedom and wholeness together in confidence. The hope is to share experiences of success in the Lord and learn from each other’s failures.

God brought some amazing men into my life following that night and through their trust, honesty and accountabilty, I have been able to find much success with my own struggles with lust that I have dealt with for so many years. I am so blessed and thankful to have real guys like Mat to do this journey with so that we may become not only be better men in our relationships, but be better men of God. I want to encourage you to check out The Siren and the Saint and be prepared to be inspired by our story of healing and restoration over this addiction that almost every man in this world battles with on a daily basis.

During his CD release week, Mat gave out this knitted red beard to a lucky twitter follower – so awesome!

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God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.  2 Corinthians 5:21

Christin and I had a chance to go to CCV and see Chris Tomlin in concert. I’ve been a fan of Chris Tomlin since our church starting signing some of his worship songs back in day. His music has been a tremendous influence on my life since I’ve been going to the Passion conferences. One of my favorite speakers, Louie Giglio was also on hand to deliver an amazing message from Psalms 148. I love his messages about creation and how He portrays God as this huge God in the center of the universe and that all things will praise His name. I know at times I take Him and how big He is for granted. It was an amazing night for me to give back and worship God for all He has done in my life and for being so faithful.

Chris Tomlin

Louie Giglio

Psalm 148

Praise the LORD.

Praise the LORD from the heavens;
praise him in the heights above.
Praise him, all his angels;
praise him, all his heavenly hosts.
Praise him, sun and moon;
praise him, all you shining stars.
Praise him, you highest heavens
and you waters above the skies.

Let them praise the name of the LORD,
for at his command they were created,
and he established them for ever and ever—
he issued a decree that will never pass away.

Praise the LORD from the earth,
you great sea creatures and all ocean depths,
lightning and hail, snow and clouds,
stormy winds that do his bidding,
you mountains and all hills,
fruit trees and all cedars,
wild animals and all cattle,
small creatures and flying birds,
kings of the earth and all nations,
you princes and all rulers on earth,
young men and women,
old men and children.

Let them praise the name of the LORD,
for his name alone is exalted;
his splendor is above the earth and the heavens.
And he has raised up for his people a horn,
the praise of all his faithful servants,
of Israel, the people close to his heart.

Praise the LORD

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“…may they become perfectly ONE, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me.” John 17:23

Historic First Presbyterian

Tonight was the first ever launch of Phoenix ONE at Historic First Presbyterian in downtown Phoenix. Phoenix ONE is a citywide worship gathering of young professionals in their 20’s and 30’s connecting as one body in Christ. Their mission is to be a unified movement of local churches coming together as ONE to reach young professionals for Christ and connect them to a local faith community. Phoenix ONE’s executive director is Jeff Gokee.

Phoenix ONE director Jeff Gokee

I loved how the setting was in an old historic church. The director of Charlotte ONE, Dave Hickman talked about breathing life into these old churches. Charlotte ONE pioneered the CityONE Network and Phoenix is now following in their footsteps. The hope is that many more cities will follow. Dave really hit on the topic of the church reaching this world as ONE. He shared several scripture verses stating that Christ meant for us to work in unity (1 Corinthians 10:17, Ephesians 4:1-6) and that this is really the only effective way to evangalize this world.

I personally am excited to see where this ministry will head. I know tons of amazing people behind the scenes working to make this happen. My prayer is that we see the church look beyond its walls and work together to reach the greater Phoenix area. We are already too divided as a body and we need to come together to spread the good news of Christ to this generation as ONE.

Downtown Phoenix

The real job of every moral teacher is to keep bringing us back to simple principles which we’re so anxious not to see – C.S. Lewis

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