Comfortable?

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What is it you are praying for most? Do you want your life to be comfortable or significant? It’s not impossible for it to be both, but God is much more concerned in shaping us and making us into the image of His son, than making us “comfortable”. Being comforted is different than being comfortable. Being conformed to the image of Jesus is the only way to lead a significant life now that will matter later and this often only happens through discomfort and discontentedness. If God has placed you in an uncomfortable situation rest assured that He will bring you through and the things you learn and who you become will be far more valuable than any “comfort” this life would procure.‪#‎lifecoach‬ ‪#‎mentor‬ ‪#‎discipleship‬ ‪#‎disciple‬ ‪#‎vision2hear‬ ‪#‎v2hwave‬‪#‎v2hawaken‬

Ministry Updates: India and El Salvador

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This has been an exciting month for a couple of our sister ministries. In India, Pastor Rajendra and the community near the orphanage was able to get the long-awaited playground installed. This is a project we have been anticipating since the children’s ministry at New Vision Church generated the funds to donate this to the orphans.

As you can see from the pictures, the playground has several ways for the children to play and no doubt the children will be very excited to have this area to enjoy. The orphanage currently has 16 children residing (to my knowledge) and Vision 2 Hear along with a couple of other churches are helping to support them. If you are interested in sponsoring an orphan, please contact us at vision2hear@gmail.com for more information. We hope to update you soon from Pastor Rajendra with more pics of the WAVE Team and churches there. Until…

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Surge Trips 1&2

The Drums -How It Ended-, Portamento,I leave about 6pm tomorrow night for Managua, Nicaragua. I will meet the rest of the team of 23 at the airport about 3pm. With so many we have to arrive very early of course. I am joining the team from Tennessee, lead by Terry Davis, a friend and member of Vision 2 Hear, who is also the pastor of The Movement.

This trip makes my 8th time ( I think) to Padre Ramos, working alongside our dear friends at the Youth Ranch. I am looking forward to seeing our friends and the kids again who make up the wonderful community there. We expect to work with various projects like passing out Bibles in nearby villages, along with helping feed some people in the more impoverished areas. In the past, we have done many things like this before, even delivering sinks and ovens.

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Delivering a sink for a family in the community. They weigh about 300 pounds.

In the evenings we will have Bible studies and several of us will perform music and share testimonies and preach. We are expecting an awesome week.

On June 6, Trevor and I will take a bus and make our way to meet up with a team from New Vision Church in Siguatepeque, Honduras. While in Honduras we will work building a playground for a church and then hosting VBS for kids for a few days toward the end of the week.

The Drums -How It Ended-, Portamento, (1) I’ve been to Honduras a few times also but that has always been to San Pedro Sulu. This time we will be in Siguatepeque. Other times we did much work with orphanages and churches, mostly performing and preaching. This will be a little different but still very excited to be able to help build something that they will use to reach more people for Christ.

The missionary there recently launched a skateboarding ministry and I hope to be able to talk with him about how we can be a bigger part of that. V2H has had a skateboarding ministry before called Elevate and we’ve done work in El Salvador with it before, helping build ramps and host an large outreach event.

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So anyway, I’ve got to get back to packing and cleaning. Thanks for your prayers and remembering us over the next two weeks. I’ll be limited to internet access while away but will post as I can. Adios!

The Inspired Mission: The Story Of Us

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Above all, you must realize that no prophecy in Scripture ever came from the prophet’s own understanding, or from human initiative. No, those prophets were moved by the Holy Spirit, and they spoke from God. 2 Peter 1:21-22

At the moment we obtain a glimmer of hope we have inspiration. This inspiration leads to a renewed since of mission. All-of-a-sudden hope that was lost is regained. This is how mission works: someone is inspired and they transfer their hope to another.

Hope is not wishful thinking but the belief and assurance of a promised reality. When one is truly inspired they are fueled by a passion greater than any possible pain they may encounter in seeing the mission completed. They are able to see the possibilities and are willing to make any sacrifice for those possibilities to be realities. That’s hope. That’s inspiration.

In 2 Peter 1:21-22 the Bible tells us that scripture was inspired by God but written by man. These holy men of God were “carried along by the Holy Spirit”. This reveals how God has chosen to work: He inspires and we are moved to action. God’s Spirit carries us along in our mission. God’s Spirit gives, leads, enables, and seals the hope of every missionary. The mission is accomplished in us and through us when we embrace inspirational hope. The mission only becomes the mission when we are willing to embrace the potential pain and suffering to realize it.

David Crowder has a song called a Beautiful Collision, which seems to describe the moment when inspiration hits reality. Isaiah overheard God one day Who was basically asking: “who will tell the story of us”? Isaiah answered and gave himself to the mission. How about you? Have you overheard God talking about anything lately? That’s the story of us. People carry the mission along by conversations with others, by inspirations of God, which lead to pure motivations of love, sacrifice and service.

The story of all of us is really the story of God in us, inspiring us all to good works. God’s mission is fulfilled when His people move on the inspiration He has given and trust Him with the results.

Am I Missing The Mission?

AM I

Where there is no revelation [or prophetic vision], the people cast off restraint… —Proverbs 29:18

Carrots?

A vision is given to drive me beyond myself. Pushing and compelling, a vision holds a proverbial “carrot’ just out of my reach. The vision is meant to force me to know God and know myself and keep the priorities right: God first. It’s impossible to have a  real vision from God until I have a real vision of God Himself. Until I see Him clearly, every other “vision” is about self.

My efforts and exercise of faith cannot be found in my own strength but only in Christ. Placing my faith, hope, trust and love in Christ alone will keep the vision right in front of me and continue to compel me to the greater things God has for me and wants to do through me. When God gives a vision of Himself, I will see myself clearly as Isaiah (Isaiah 6) did and proclaim “Woe is me! I am undone”! It is then that I will hear God’s voice and know what it is He wants me to do. It may not even be a direct command per se but simply overhearing God’s heart and desires as I have seen Him.

Knowing Is Not Enough!

Even knowing the vision is not enough. I can know Who God is and what God wants (through His word), but until I understand that the vision God gives is not meant to just be a mission for me to accomplish but meant to also accomplish something within me, I will fail. Jonah is a great example of this as He was God’s selected prophet to go to Ninevah. Yet Jonah chose to try to escape the mission God was trying to work in his own heart by thinking that God would just send someone else or perhaps just save the people because He was a God who was “slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness” anyway.

I can clearly see from Jonah’s example that God is not content to give me a vision for someone else. The vision is meant for me; to work in me. The vision is to help me see that I have my own sin to grapple with whether it is in forms of racism, elitism, or just being a “complainer” all of which Jonah seems to suffer, or some other innate spiritual malady. Moral alignment is not all God is looking for. God is looking for people to love Him and obey Him out of love not a sense of duty.

Beyond Me.

God doesn’t put things within my reach…They are just beyond me. This is not taunting by God but compelling me to continue to seek His face, His wisdom, His goals and not my own. When the vision itself becomes the goal, I can become perfectionistic and fail to remember that God is the One I need to chase after. God is the One perfecting me and the vision. He is not concerned so much about the vision, as though it rested solely upon me. He wants me to KNOW Him. He is most concerned that I have the right vision of Him, knowing that He alone is the One I am reaching for. When God alone is my goal, I will practice discipline and restraint because of Who He says I CAN be and become all He MADE me to be. The right vision will give me the right mission and if that vision is anything other than God, I am missing the mission.

November: A Month To Remember

fall leavesThis is a list from a previous post a couple of years ago. I have adjusted it to reflect the month this year:

Nov. 1 (All Saints Day) : Express your gratitude in a note, phone call, text or email to a person(s) whose ministry in daily life nurtures your faith. Thank God for this saint. Consider how you may be used as a “saint” to others and be thankful!

Nov. 2: Take time to enjoy something you own but have failed to appreciate or use lately. Employ or admire it with thankfulness today. Ask God to show you how you other things you take for granted and be thankful today!

Nov. 3: Take a thankful journey through the rooms in your house, giving thanks for all the wonderful memories, laughs and times together with loved ones. Give thanks for a roof over your head and for the places you have shared life with others.

Nov. 4: While you are eating a meal, take time to consider the aroma, the colors and the taste. Remember those who do not have food tonight and be thankful for God’s provision for you. Pray for those who are hungry. Give thanks for your senses that allow you to enjoy such wonderful food.

Nov. 5: Find something you use every day. Give God thanks for allowing you to have something you use like this everyday in work or pleasure.

Nov. 6: Be thankful for our government officials and elected officers. Acknowledge God’s control over everything and give thanks for His sovereign power to rule and reign.

Nov. 7: Be thankful for God’s creation. Spend some time outside soaking in the colors of nature, the smells and the noise of creatures small and great. Be creative and gather some items for a centerpiece in your room or office.

Nov. 8: Be thankful for your body and it’s members. Treat yourself to a massage, hot shower, or relaxing evening with feet propped up. Rest and be thankful!

Nov. 9: Be thankful for something small today. Give thanks for your coffee, cookie, or even toothbrush! Take in the smaller things in life and be thankful!

Nov. 10: Pass along something that is simply taking up space in your life. Show gratitude for your surplus and pass along something that’s not being used.

Nov. 11 ( Veteran’s Day observed): Give thanks for peace, and the peacemakers in your life. If you see a soldier today, tell them “thanks” for their service!

Nov. 12: Take some time to reflect upon people who have been influential in your life through their sermons, websites, books, music or podcasts. Write them a comment on their websites to encourage them and show your thankfulness.

Nov. 13: Take some time and think about a movie, song or book that has impacted you lately. Say a prayer of thanks for the people who made it happen. Give thanks for others using their gifts to inspire and impact you. Pray that you will do the same!

Nov. 14: Give thanks for members of your family. Maybe send one a special letter of how and why they are so important to your family unit.

Nov. 15: Give thanks for the businesses in your area. Wherever you go today to shop or eat, be thankful for the people serving and running the business. Show appreciation to the clerks and managers.

Nov. 16: Be thankful for the schools and churches in your area. Pray for the pastors, teachers and volunteers. Send a note to your local pastor, principal or child’s teacher giving thanks for their role in the community.

Nov. 17: Pray for a charitable organization or two today, giving thanks for the efforts they are making around the world. Give thanks for organizations that help others in need. Make plans to join one in service soon as an act of thanksgiving.

Nov. 18: Do a kind deed for a neighbor as an act of thanksgiving for people in your community.

Nov. 19: Show a good friend your gratitude by making sending them a song, playlist, or video of something that reminds you of them. Be thankful for good friends!

Nov. 20: Give thanks today for Jesus Christ and His ultimate sacrifice for sin. Pause and spend a few moments in silence reflecting upon the gift God has given. Let Thanksgiving flow from your heart in words and song.

Nov. 21: Thank God today for big things in your life. The huge life-changing moments that have shaped you. For Birthdays, Graduations, Promotions, Weddings, Births, Deaths, Pains, Heartaches, and the like. Thank God for using each event to shape you and make you.

Nov. 22: Find a person you work with and compliment them on a job well done. Give thanks for hard working people!

Nov. 23: Take a few minutes today and simply be quiet, reflecting on your community of faith. Give thanks for others that share your faith, encourage you and challenge you to grow and become all God wants.

Nov. 24: Give thanks for your job, your opportunities, your paycheck, your retirement, your financial situation. Even with the smallest of funds, be thankful and give some to God as a Thanksgiving offering above what you normally give.

Nov. 25: Think about each person you will share Thanksgiving with and create a small card or token that reminds you of them to set at their seat at Thanksgiving dinner.

Nov. 26: As you prepare for Thanksgiving, share stories of things you are thankful for from this year.

Nov. 27: (Thanksgiving) Take a few minutes and share two or three word phrases that explain your heart of thanksgiving this year. Say a prayer and include these things in the prayer.

Nov. 28: Consider your car, phone and computer today. Give God thanks for such tools to stay connected with people you know and love. Use these things today to make a special connection or serve God as an offering of thanksgiving.

Nov. 29: Give thanks freedom and the privileges we have in our country. Exercise your freedoms wisely and use them to benefit God’s kingdom work.

Nov. 30: Wrap up this month by making a simple journal entry of how living a life of thanks this month has affected you and those around you.