Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Update from GCOTV School of Ministry


Wow! That is really all we can say when we look at how God has blessed over the past six months. On March 29th, 2019 Grace Church of the Valley School of Ministry e-mailed out the first “Study in the Life of Christ and the Gospels” free of charge to pastors and college presidents to help them educate their ministers, and members.
Six months later we have seen God do so much with this study (Life of Christ):

  • Currently being used in 43 Countries
    • 114 ministries/churches 
    • 30 college/Bible Institute and Seminaries.  
    •  With 19 students completing the study and receiving their certificate of completion in four countries.
  • August 19th, 2019 we also made available the “Study in the Book of Genesis.” However, this study we are unable to provide a certificate for, it available free of charge as well.   
God has expanded our vision, over the past six months God has allowed me personally to use my talents and education to help colleges throughout Africa and India to train their pastors and ministers. We have written a facilitator and student manuals that are available to Bible colleges, seminaries, Bible institute, and school of ministries.  Allowing your local instructors to teach courses on “Christian Counseling” (This study is currently already being used by 22 schools in 13 countries). In addition, a course on “Addictions.” should be released within the next month.

What does God have planned? Besides are continuing work here at Grace Church of the Valley School of Ministry local campus, which we are seeing some amazing things happen with our students.  We our currently working on several projects for our students internationally. Some educational resources to watch for:

  • A Study in the Book of Acts, this will be designed like the Life of Christ Study and the Book of Genesis study (no certificate will be offered).
  • A Facilitator and Student guide are being developed for:
    • Excellence in Leadership
    •  Pastoral Theology
Friends, if you’re interested in any of these studies please e-mail me at gcotv.schoolofministry@gmail.com …. Please share what study you are interested in as well as your name, where you are from, and name of your ministry or school.

Another exciting announcement is that in the Spring of 2020 I will be traveling with my dear friend Dr. Charles Travis to Uganda to speak both at local churches, but to educate minister to pastors and church leadership in Pastoral Theology. More details coming on this soon. 

Thursday, September 26, 2019

Reflecting on Generals of Faith!

Sitting here at my desk reflecting on the upcoming weekend, as my son (Rev. Ethan Allen) and I prepare to host the Logos Global Network – Greater Cincinnati Regional Fellowship and how that I’m going to be allowed once again to spend time with one of the Generals of the Faith (Dr. Charles Travis).

I have been blessed to have known Dr. Travis for just over 17 years, and I personally consider him one of my pastors, friend, and mentor. We have stood and cried together at Ground Zero, we have prayed together at the many alters, and we have shared stories of success and yes even some failures.

Honestly, I have not met many men or women that I would personally call Generals of the Faith, because when I look at the General’s of the Faith the list starts in Hebrews 11, and then moves to include men like Apostle Paul, Apostle John, then through out history men like Spurgeon, Wesley, and Finney. Men that stood the test of time to reflect the values of Christ in their life. As I reflect over the past 40 years of ministry, I have had few Generals of the Faith in my life. I personally think of Dr. Lougheed, Dr. Rawlings, Dr. Webb, and others. However, I have many more "Fellow Soldiers" and I will forever be thankful for both.

As I reflect on the legacy of the few Generals of the Faith that I have encountered I have noticed three key traits … (I pray as men and women think of me, they will see these same traits, not as a General of the Faith but as a faithful pastor)\

  • You can tell that they have been in the presence of Christ today and have a direct connection with Him.
  • They understand the Word of God and know how to make it alive to everyone they encounter.
  • They love Jesus and it shows in everything they say and do.

As I spend time this weekend, I will not only spend it with Dr. Charles Travis, I will also spend it with the gentleman I currently call pastor who will argue that he doesn’t fall into the ranking of General of the Faith. However, I will argue that, for me Dr. Roger Webb, Pastor of Grace Church of the Valley and Chancellor of our School of Ministry is in the same category with Dr. Travis and other men of faith.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

New book ...


Ladies and Gentlemen, I have just republished “Christian in Recovery: “A Supplemental Workbook for Individual Counseling Sessions” this workbook was originally published in 2002 and we are now offering on Amazon Kindle for only $.99 … The workbook is designed to help Pastors, Counselors, and other professionals successfully help individuals dealing with addiction.  Providing activities, suggestions, and resources. Please download your copy today 

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

The tragedies of Suicide keep coming:


 The news was released today of Megachurch pastor Jarrid Wilson, known for his mental health advocacy, dies by suicide. (https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/megachurch-pastor-jarrid-wilson-known-his-mental-health-advocacy-dies-n1052301)
This heart-breaking story coming as we are in the mist of National Suicide Prevention week (September 8th – 14th, 2019).

I’m always amazed how many people believe that pastors don’t struggle with depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues. The reality is that pastors, their wives, and children are more likely to struggle than the average church member (that is not based on any scientific research, simply my observation).

I believe that there are three key reason pastors, and their families struggle with depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues, and that suicide becomes a means to cope with the pain.

  1. Isolation … To many pastors today are separated from people that should be giving them support and encouragement. Over the years I have watched pastors who claim to have best friends. However, have never shared with them their personal struggles of depression, anxiety, and other personal issues due to the fact they did not want to look weak in their faith, or fearful of being judged as not faithful enough to do their job.
  2. Ego … (Get over it) Yes, I’m talking to pastors, I have been in pastoral ministry for 40 years and I’m guilty of this as well. I can’t share with the congregation what is happening in my life because I need to be strong for them. I was recently with a pastor that had been going through a crisis in his personal life (his brother had recently passed), outside of a Facebook post to the church about the funeral he never shared anything with his church about the events leading up to the death, in which his brother had been in hospice for 5 weeks. Ironically, this same pastor had recently got on a church member for not calling him when the individual’s mom was in the hospital. 
  3. Failure to get into God’s word … When I was in Bible college a dear professor shared (not sure if this a director quote, but close) "You will never be able to take on the challenges of life, if this book (Bible) is simply a Text Book, and not your Life-Giving Book." I have found myself too many times looking for a sermon, an outline for a class, or reading for the next assignment and not reflecting on the passage that is helping me personally deal with life issues in front of me.

So how do we change this …

  1. We find a minimum of 5 people that we can talk to about what is going on in our lives and we get honest. (Bold statement here … Only one of these should be a pastor). Individuals (we should also limit the amount of people on this that are family), that will not only pray with us but will go with us to get help if we need it, will stand with us when there seems to be no hope. Yes, even will go to the medical professional and hold us accountable for the medication that is prescribed.
  2. We learn about our illness and how its effects our thinking … When I was diagnosis with Attention Deficit Disorder at age 47, (yes we all knew something was going on long before that) I spent a lot of time attempting to understand how my thinking was different from others, and what I could do to off-set the rapid thoughts that got me in so much trouble way too many times, or inability to sit still and focus. I learned to work with my wife, children, best-friend, and pastor to find skills that allow me to accomplish the task assigned as well as not getting caught up in the negative thinking that often comes. In learning about ADD/ADHD I was able to better understand how it was treated and skills to cope.

Number Three is for the Church … Get off your high horse and come down to reality. If we prayed for, encouraged people, walked with people, and supported people with mental illness the same way we did someone with cancer, heart disease, knee pain, etc. We would not see the crisis that we are currently seeing. I know individuals that are scared to death to mention they have depression, anxiety, ADD/ADHD, or another mental health illness because of being judged as weak, having lack of faith, or in some cases even being demon possessed. Please stop the madness and provide the support to help people heal and recover from these illnesses and be an active productive member of our churches.

Friends, I don’t know what Pastor Jarrid Wilson was thinking the day he chooses to step in to eternity. However, God knows the pain that he was feeling emotionally that drove him to this decision, and where his relationship was at with HIM (God) at the time. The question I have is who else knew and who is accountable within the church for failing to be the friend, pastor, and prayer warrior that should have provided a safe place to talk and find help.

The reality is with over 45,000 suicides nationwide, this is happening way too much, and it’s time for the church to step up and help focus as a non-judgmental place of support, encouragement, prayer, and friendship.



 
 

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

God help me stand in your place today!


I was reading Proverbs 25: 6-7 today … what a powerful passage of scripture. When you read those words in Christian Standard Bible they jump off the page: "Don’t brag about yourself before the king, and don’t stand in the place of the great; 7 for it is better for him to say to you, "Come up here!" than to demote you in plain view of a noble."


I’m fearful that too many preachers are promoting themselves above the place that God has called them to be. I was taught humility as a young preacher and even today I still hold on to these truths.

  • I always allow the minister where I’m preaching or teaching to give my title that will be used such as Reverend, Doctor, Pastor, Bishop or Minister.
  • I always sit on the front row or with my wife if she is there until the pastor asks me to come to the platform.
  • I always respect the position of authority over me (Pastor/Bishop). I’m a guest at his church and acknowledge their position, and never assume that I have some special anointing or right to be there.

  • I fear that too many preachers/pastors have come to believe their own press releases on Facebook, LinkedIn, or their Website. It is time we sit down and be humble in the presence of God and allow him to promote us to his place of prominent.

    Folks don’t misunderstand me, I’m very proud of who I am: President of a School of Ministry, having been active in ministry for 40 years, having earned three doctorates, and taught in churches and conferences throughout the Midwest and Northeast. However, all that doesn’t compare to when a Pastor allows me to humbly come into his pulpit and share God’s word. Remember, it is not about what you did yesterday, it’s about what you’re doing and peaching today.

    Monday, August 12, 2019


    Rev. Don Allen, Jr PhD
    Grace Church of the Valley School of Ministry
    1709 Nowlin Ave. Lawrenceburg, IN 47025

    Dear Family & Friends:
                As Lee and I write this letter Spring of 2020 seems a long way off. However, the reality is, it’s not that long.
                We would like to share with you an amazing opportunity that I (Don) have this coming Spring (2020). I have been given the opportunity to preach and teach in East Africa. I will be traveling with my dear friend Dr. Charles Tavis; President of both Aidan University & Logos Global Network. While in East Africa I will have the opportunity to minister to Pastors in a Conference on Effective Pastoral Ministries, as well as preach the Gospel to hundreds of church leaders who in turn will then reach thousands.
    Over the past several years this has been a personal dream of mine to teach pastors around the world. With the recent launch of our directive study program through GCOTV (Grace Church of the Valley) School of Ministry currently reaching 41 countries with over 110 ministries, and untold number of students involved in using the study.  This trip will also give me the opportunity to meet with pastors and students that are engaged with GCOTV School of Ministry and using the Life of Christ Study, and other studies we are currently developing and plan to share soon.  
                Now the reason for this note, we need your help. The need is Two-fold, (1) We need your prayers that all required plans come together as we move forward, (2) help in covering the cost to go and minister. The total budget for this very extensive trip is only $4500.00, all inclusive. We are asking you to pray about what God would have you to do in helping make this trip possible.
    Friends, we have made arrangements with Grace Church of the Valley so that your donation can be tax deductible. If you go to  https://gcotv.com/give/ and go to Mission, then make a note in the memo line for Don Allen’s trip, and the funds will be applied to the account. Or you can mail a check or money order to GCOTV @ 1709 Nowlin Ave. Lawrenceburg, IN 47025 with the same designation.

    Sincerely
    Don Allen, Jr.

    Wednesday, July 24, 2019

    Time for the Next Great Awakening …

    Throughout the late 1800’s there was political nightmare happening in America. This nightmare eventually erupted into a Civil War. However, what is also interesting it also ushered in some of the Greatest Revivals in history. As I sit today reading the news, listening to people talk, and realize we are once again in the midst of a political nightmare. I listen to the President talk and yes even tweet (personally I wish all their tweet accounts were shut down), I hear presidential candidates, Senators, Congressmen and Congresswomen, political advisors, and sadly, Pastors commenting back and forth.

    Realize, just as with the events of the mid-1800’s the only true survival for America is a great move of God, Yes a real National Revival, from the White House to the Farm House, from the Department of Education to the classroom, from the Pentagon to the local military base. Yes, even from the National Cathedral to the local church. It is time once again for America to seek a real solution, it is time for Men and Women of prayer to stand up and pray for revival. It is time for so called Men and Women of God to go into their prayer closets and seek God and shut up in public.

    It is time for Men and Women of God to step into their calling and preach repentance to a nation as John the Baptist did, it is time for these men and women to preach the truth of scripture and not a personal interpretation of the scripture. When we look at the Great Revivals of History there is one consistent theme "Scripture is the Word of God, and Confession of Sin and Repentance"

    We want to see the political battles stop, racism stopped, the violence in the streets stopped, the abortion of unwanted children stopped, we must stop tweeting our opinion, and do it God’s way "First Chronicles 7: 14 .. the King James Version puts it this way "If my people which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land"

    What I find interesting in this passage is that he is talking to the believer, the Baptist, Methodist, and Assembly of the God, Church of Christ, and Charismatic non-denominational and yes even the Catholics. It is time for the CHURCH to seek HIM (Christ) and let him do the healing. It is time to simply pray, seek, and repent.

    I’m convinced that the Greatest Revival is yet to come, the only question is how bad will we allow it to get before we seek it?

    Update from GCOTV School of Ministry

    Wow! That is really all we can say when we look at how God has blessed over the past six months. On March 29 th , 2019 Grace Church of th...