Thursday, November 12, 2009

One of my proudest moments as a father -- maybe ever!

My wife Becki called me at work earlier this week. She usually has something she is thinking about or something she wants my thoughts on. This time she shared with me what my eight year old daughter, Gina, wrote at school on leadership. This is what she said.

10-29-09 Gina Nored 3rd Grade

"If I could be a leader in any area, I would be a Christian leader. I would teach others about god, and try for them to believe in him. I would also tell bible stories, and read memory verses. If there was a bad time, I would try my best to fix it. Also I would make bible classes, and bible studies. I would be just like my dad."

When she read all of but the last sentence, talking about telling others about God, doing Bible studies and Bible classes, I was smiling. But when she said, "I would be just like my dad," I was blown away. I was not expecting these words, and they were powerful. I have to say that it was one of my proudest moments as a father.

It hit me how much our children look up to us. They imitate us--the good and the bad. I'm glad that Gina has had a heart instilled in her for God. If there is nothing else Becki and I can do, that will be a great thing.

Becki said that she read last week that at age 12, kids don't want to be around their parents (or at least they don't share it). She said that we only have 4 years left that Gina will want to be with us, to do things with us all the time. Wow. I need to cherish these years, and continue to try to be the best father I can be.

What are you teaching your children by your life, actions, time, and money?

Saturday, November 07, 2009

A wonderful smile!

Diabolic smile
Originally uploaded by Elishams

Here is a great picture I found on Flickr. Doesn't this smile warm your soul?

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

What a Church, What a Day! - Serving Our Community

Today was a great day for High Pointe. Wednesday is the day that our food pantry and clothes closet are open. And today was also a day in which we were taking applications from families for the Angel Tree ministry.

The church was flooded with people who needed help. People with real hurts and struggles. One woman was named Alma. She was there with one of her daughters and grandkids. She has a neice who is gaining community service hours working in our clothes closet. Her sister's girls are struggling due to brokenness in her family. She was divorced, and admitted some mistakes there.

We prayed with Alma and her daughter. And tonight we will study together. She is planning on bringing much of her family, including her grandkids and her neice's kids. One of our children's ministry workers and our youth minister will be meeting these kids tonight and taking them to Bible classes. Alma is hoping that they will receive some good influences to help them in their struggles. She said that though she had gone through some tough times, she had not rejected God.

I also asked Alma if she had anyone in her family who needed to practice their English, as we have a FriendSpeak ministry. She said that the man that she was dating needed this, and that she would bring him tonight. So I called Jim and Donna, our FriendSpeak leaders. Donna will come and help with the study with Alma, and Jim will hopefully work with Alma's friend with FriendSpeak.

It was great to see all of our staff working on this ministry. Linda, our secretary, has a heart for this ministry which has flown over and touched the whole church, getting so many others involved. It was great to see the Bryans, one of our families, work together (the kids are home schooled) serving those who came in, as well as Laura's daughter, Robbyn, who speaks Spanish (very helpful!). Bryan, one of our ministers, came back from his trip excited about spending time with a church that had a large food pantry ministry that had partnered with many businesses in the community to meet these needs. We could do the same thing here.

There is so much good being done by this church, and God is being made known all across our community. Thank you for all of those who have a heart for those whom Jesus cared for!

Can you be praying for Alma and her family?

Monday, November 02, 2009

Spiritual Gifts Seminar at Enterprise Boulevard Church of Christ

Yesterday I flew out to Lake Charles, Louisiana, to give a Spiritual Gifts Seminar. (As a side note, American Eagle somehow lost my luggage on a direct flight. That is hard to do.) We had the first night of the seminar last night, and will conclude tonight.

Everyone has been very welcoming and has received me--and most importantly--the Spiritual gifts material--very well. One of the members, Jason Poynter, has been helping to start many good things at Enterprise Blvd., including life groups, a children's worship hour, and most recently, Spiritual gifts.

Jason had been searching on the Internet for Spiritual gifts material and the Church of Christ, and he came across my seminar on my website(s), Story of Redemption and the Missional Outreach Network. Then he went and attended a Dynamic Marriage training workshop that four of our elders attended. When he got back home, he put together my name and the church's name and talked with his minister, Paul Franks, about contacting me and using my book, Using Your Spiritual Gifts.

It turns out that Paul and I have a good mutual friend, John Dobbs, who is at the Forsythe Church of Christ in Monroe, Louisiana. And Paul was at one time next door neighbors with John Mark Hicks, who taught my Historical Theology class at Harding University Graduate School of Religion. It is a small world in the church!

Prior to coming, most of the church took the Spiritual Gifts Inventory that I developed, which gives people their top five Spiritual gifts. After the seminar, starting next Sunday, they will study through the gifts in a small group type of format. Out of these studies and discussions will come new ministries, people who find their place in current ministries, and great application in their daily lives.

It's great to see a church excited about serving, discovering, and using their Spiritual gifts! For information on the Spiritual Gifts Seminar, go to the Spiritual Gifts Seminar page on the Story of Redemption.

Have you discovered your Spiritual gifts? If so, what are they and how have you used them?

Does your church have a Spiritual gifts ministry?