Welcome

The posts that follow all deal with the highs and lows of Ministry and ministry related topics. They follow my PRIME Experience in Minford Ohio and will hopefully continue afterwards.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

PRIME Pics JUNE-JULY

Photo: VBS 2012VBS "love the lord you God with all you heart, with all you soul with all your mind with all your strength." I improvised on the Strength motion.
Photo: The real Alan. I got sniped. I close my eyes for two seconds and this is how they treat me


Photo: VBS 2012VBS set
Photo: That's some bread. Ready for neighbor to neighbor. .50 bread at AldisAldi had $0.50 bread so the pastor and I grabbed it to give to people for Neighbor to Neighbor.

Posing for a redo. Water balloon fight.

The Cast of the Eyelashes


John 1:17, Grace or Law

Over the past week our church has had a Vacation Bible School. God gave us over 30 on and off throughout the week. Out of all the nights Monday was the hardest. We had had several things not quite work out the way I was hoping. To top it off, it was the first time that the church had put one on in several years.

Afterward, I had several of my volunteers come up to me and were very critical of my decisions. At the time I fought for how I had it. When I couldn't take it anymore I left the conversation and went to take care of things outside and think through what had happened. I eventually came to the conclusion that my volunteers were right and I made the changes for the next night and we kept going.

The following morning the head pastor led a devotional on the following passage.

John 1:16-18
English Standard Version (ESV)
16 For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace.
17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
18 No one has ever seen God; the only God,[b] who is at the Father's side,[c] he has made him known.

he focused more on verse 17 than the other two. He stated that there are two ends of a pendulum for leaders. Those who lead by the law, and those who lead by grace.

Those who land in the law side of the extreme will be very hard to budge from what is "written in stone." They will continue to abide by the law that Moses gave tot he Israelite people. These people will also try to follow every small detail to a T.

Those who lead by grace extreme will be overbearing in the way of letting people off too easily. It is very easy for people to walk all over them. While they are showing the grace that Jesus gave us, these people will be almost too relaxed in their actions to see real problems.

We must them find the right balance between the two. there will be times when we have to follow the rules of life and the ministry and yet there are times when we need to show grace and be flexible with the rules and be able to rearrange different aspects of our beliefs.

This is one of those things that I have been thinking about over the last few weeks. I have had to continually fight against evil that is trying to find its way into the church and separate it into bits and pieces. This cannot happen at all costs.

Continue to pray for me as I am on PRIME. The biggest thing for now is done and over with, now starts the second half and the longer half of the internship.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

A constant reminder... or is it?

I am second.



The newest reminder to put God first in our lives and that we are to come second in our relationships with Him. I proudly wear a bracelet similar to the one on the right as a reminder of this truth.

I wake up in the morning put it on and go about my day with this constant reminder around my arm to put this truth to practice in everyday life. However some things that have occurred over the past week are making me wonder if I need to take it off for awhile.

Like all things that come like this if you wear it long enough, your body will go through a process habituation. It is much the same as a baby who gets tired of a toy once they have played with it for so long. It moves on to something else. By taking it off it may trigger a reaction to figure out where the bracelet is and thus cause the instant reminder that the bracelet was made for.

Tonight at Wednesday worship God convicted me of something. It was that I was not giving Him my best. I had been working on the Vacation Bible School set and decorations that had ended for the day about half an hour before the evening service was to begin. Instead of changing clothes before worship I came in the old painting clothes I had been wearing. While this was going I noticed that I had not been giving this over to God and that I was starting to sway in the way of pushing God to the side and forgetting that it is all in his hands.

I am failing to put God first.

As simple as that. I am failing to put God first. Without him I can do nothing.

Please be praying that as VBS comes NEXT WEEK that we will all put God First in all that we do.

Also be praying that I would not get stressed out about this and let God work out the details. I have to make some major decisions in the upcoming days that I really don't want to have to make.

Peace be with you

Alan

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Red Sea Project

video

The video is something I made to show the parting of the Red Sea in Exodus 14.

Here are the basics. Pharaoh has just released the people of Israel from slavery to go into the land God has given them. Pharaoh then changes his mind and starts to chase the Israelites as they head toward the Red Sea. The people begin to complain to Moses that it would have been better for them to die as slaves than face the slow and painful death that was sure to come if the Egyptians caught up with them. Moses prayed to God and God gave the answer. God parted the Red Sea just long enough for the Israelites to get across, then as the Egyptians are following God crashes the Sea down on the Egyptians that were "never to be seen again." I can only imagine that this part would look like an Indiana Jones stunt as the last of Israel is running as the water begins to crash the water around the "evil villain."

Over the past week I have had several experiences that will not easily be forgotten.

Friday, I was coming "home" (for those of you who don't know I am living in the church) from grocery shopping with the pastor and his wife, we stop for gas and the gas station had just lost power. So we continue on and as we get closer to the church, we see smoke coming from above the tree line at the church. As we get to the church, we thank God it was not the church that was burning, but the telephone pole outside the church. A car had over-corrected coming around the curve by the church and snapped the telephone pole in two. Now, the not so awesome part is that of all the telephone pole along our road, the car had to hit the one with the transformer for the main power line causing a blackout on the hottest day of June recorded in our area.

Friday night, the biggest storm of the summer so far, rolled through the area. By the grace of God the church did not lose power, but several people in the congregation did. We did lose internet for awhile, but that was nothing compared to others.

Through all of this, at times I want to throw my hands up and quit. Let the church deal with the responsibilities that I have been given. I am doing stuff that I never dreamed I would be doing, like arranging for bounce houses for VBS, helping with a makeshift food pantry each 4th Tuesday of the month, or just simply running a sound board (okay there is nothing simple about that,) you get the picture.

It is times like these where I feel like crashing under the pressure and stress, complaining to God, not seeing his plan for how things are to happen.

I need to start a Red Sea Project. It works like this. Whenever you feel down, like you can't do something, pray and seek God. God will provide an answer, whether it's a big as the Red Sea parting or a small bop on the lead with snorkeling gear, God will provide.

As Moses transferred leadership from himself to Joshua in Deuteronomy 31, he gives these words:
So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the LORD your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.
Take the challenge. Ask God for guidance and He will show you the way.

SIDE NOTE: If you are in the Portsmouth Ohio area July 16-20 and have kids in grades k-6, we would love it if you would join us for VBS from 6-8:30 each night!!

The church's/my address is

Grace Baptist Church
8186 N. State Route 139
Minford OH 45653

Also if you would like join me on Facebook go here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/331157436941506/