Monday, June 17, 2019

Amazing Day!



              Yesterday was Father’s Day, for our family it wasn’t a typical Father’s Day.  Yes, it started out with me sharing a message on what it is to be a Biblical Father in chapel at the hospital. Then heading to church to hear a message by our guess speaker.

              However, that was the end of similarity to previous Father’s Day. Understand that this is not a complaint, in fact it is the opposite, it is a tribute to my amazing wife, and my son, daughter-in-law, and my daughter. Because they didn’t make it about me, they made it about family!

See one year ago yesterday (June 16, 2018) an amazing lady passed away, my mother-in-law took her final breather here on earth.  Our relationship was unique we didn’t always see eye to eye, and we both had our moments of being stubborn. However, there was one thing we both agreed on is we loved the same people. So, at 3:00 p.m. on Father’s Day we stood at the Graveside of this amazing lady with all her children, daughter and son in-law’s, grandchildren (all but one, who lives out of the area), and great-grandson.

              For me is was bitter sweet, because as we stood at Mom’s (yes that is what I called her) graveside my mind went back 10 years ago in 2009 when in May of that year my mother passed away, and 45 days later my father passed away (Ironically, we would bury my father on his birthday June 17, 2009) so for me as I prayed with the family, I heard my own voice crack, and the tears start to run down my cheeks as I reflected on the greatest lesson these three people taught me (my mother and father, as well as my mother-in-law.

Here it is …. Love your family despite what they do, because it is the only one you have.

              I realized a long time ago; Father’s Day is not about all that the kids can do for me. It is about my Family and how I’m able to encourage them to stay close to one another and God. Three things I pray every day for my family.

1)      That they know Christ as Savior, and I will see them in Heaven!
2)      That God has and continues to wrap a hedge of protection around them and keeps them safe.
3)      That God blesses them spiritually, physically, and financially.



Friday, May 24, 2019

The challenge of education!

            I recently have been talking with individuals about their personal educational goal and objectives. What do you want to learn? Also focusing on how are you going to accomplish this?

            It is amazing to me how many people don’t have an educational goal or the desire to achieve beyond where they are currently in their life. Now understand I’m not talking about necessarily going back and doing another degree. However, I’m talking about learning something new that is going to move you forward in your career or within the church structure, or in your personal Christian walk.

            Most people know that I have multiplied doctorates (yes, I know all that and $5.00 will get me a cup of coffee at Starbuck, maybe). However, what most folks don’t realize how disorganize my thinking is when I’m attempting to study on my own. So, I have used my college education, as well as the studying for Certificates, and my Licensures to help me focus on learning things that will benefit my career which for me happens to be Preaching/Teaching about Christ and being a Christian Counselor, and Chaplain. Over the past 40 years of ministry and within my professional work as a Counselor I have learned three essential of learning.

1)     Focus on your passion, and then move from there!

a.       What is it your passion about and want to relate to others, then begun to study the topic and consume everything you can on that topic. When I became Director of a Drug Treatment program, I went back to school to complete my Bachelors, and changed my major from Pastoral Ministries to Christian Counseling and would go to consume everything I could read on the topic to the conclusion of receiving a PhD in Psychology and Christian Counseling.

 

2)    Find people of like to passion to challenge you to learn!

a.       I will never be able to thank men like Dr. Jeff Baker, Brack Strong, and Gary Sweeten that challenged me to learn about Christian Counseling and helped me become the counselor I am today, as well as the presenter that I am within the professional community. What ever you desire to be, surround yourself with people that are doing it right, asked them to direct you in your learning process.

 

3)    Finish what you start!

a.       Like many of you I have a real struggle finishing what I start, I get sidetracked easily with family, friends, and ministry opportunities. It takes people such as my wonderful wife of 33 years to keep me on task and moving forward. I didn’t quite even through there was times it seemed impossible to complete the degrees or achieve the licensure for various programs. As a result, we have seen wonderful opportunity for ministry and professional achievements.

 

If you can do these three things you will be able impact your world around, you. The foundation to learning is simple “Get Started, Keeping Going until finished, and then find a New Challenge, and do it again” As I sit here and write this blog post I’m contemplating what the next learning challenge is in my own personal life, and honestly the future looks bright.

 

Monday, May 20, 2019

Amazing Graduation ....


Yesterday, May 19th, 2019 was an amazing day at:



I was given the privilege to share in the Graduation of Grace Church of the Valley School of Ministry, preach the message in the morning service, and share the State of the School and it was an amazing time of celebration and reflection.

Let me share some of the highlights …

We celebrated our 2nd graduation class (completing our 3rd year of study) four ladies received their “Certificate of Christian Studies”
 
 
and six individuals from Ethiopia received the “Certificate of Completion in the Basic Study of the Life of Christ and the Gospels.”
 

We currently have students working on the “Basic Study in the Life of Christ and the Gospels” in 19 countries, representing 40 ministries/schools, with over 300 students working on the course. We truly are having a global impact. 

The 2019/2020 School year kicks off September 11, 2019 with our Wednesday Night classes, and at we are excited that we will have several individuals that will be working on completing their “Diploma in Christian Studies” this year, along with a new group of students completing their “Certificate in Christian Studies.”  We are also excited that Dr. Roger Webb (Chancellor of GCOTV School of Ministry) will be offering a 15-credit hour “Certificate of Excellence in Leadership” this course will meet on five Saturdays (five hours each) throughout the school year and will include reading and homework assignments.

In addition to these awesome reports, this coming June (2019) Dr. Webb will be ministering and providing training for pastors and community leaders leading to a “Certificate of Completion in Excellence in Leadership” in Kenya, and I will be traveling with our dear friend Dr. Charles Travis of Aidan University to Uganda & South Sudan (April 2020) and providing training and  a “Certificate of Completion in the Studies in Pastoral Ministry” to pastors and ministers there.

Please pray for God continue wisdom and blessing on this ministry as we attempt to train leaders within our own church, community, and around the world.

 

Friday, April 19, 2019


What is your ministry challenge?

          Please understand I feel that there is a difference between ministry challenge and ministry desires. I have come to believe over the past 40 years that my ministry challenges (what God had me doing at that moment in time for him) was not always my desire. However, it was my calling for that moment.

          The Apostle Paul puts it best in Acts 16 where Paul desire to go certain places an preach, and the Holy Spirit said No. Was the desire wrong, I don’t personally believe so. A statement that is used around our church is “Is it Good or God” there can be some Good ministry opportunities, but it is not in God’s plan for you.

          Within the first 10 years of ministry I attempted to pastor 4 churches. Honestly none of them were what any of us would call successes. However, also within that time I served as Associate Pastor of some churches with what many would call successful. Now having been in ministry for 40 years I have realized that Pastoring is not my calling. However, excepting the Ministry Challenge of serving as 2nd man is.  

          Ephesians 4: 1 I have come to believe this verse should be the foundation of our Ministry Challenge … Do I walk worthy of my vocation? It is ironic that the Greek word for vocation is also translated “Calling” … Paul had a vocation or calling to minister where God lead within the opportunities and talents God gave him. Paul was a Greek trained, Jewish Pharisee that God prepared to minister to the Gentiles throughout the region. Paul could have stood in the same rooms as Aristotle, Socrates and challenged them to think differently.

          Forty years ago, I took my first Associate pastor position at just 19 years old, since then I have thrived within this position always having a sense of purpose and joy. Within that position of Associate, I have been involved in the educational process of believers whether serving as a youth pastor, children’s pastor, men’s leader, or president of a local church school of ministry with a world-wide impact.
          
Ladies and Gentlemen, I go back to my original question: What is your 
ministry challenge? God has a ministry challenge for you personally, and he will reveal it and use you personally in great ways as you walk worthy of your vocation (calling) …

However, we need three things to be successful in the vocation (calling).

1)     We need a personal relationship with God the father, his Son Jesus, and the Holy Spirit. Be willing to listen to them speak and move us in the calling they have, not the calling of my parents, pastors, friends, or well-meaning individuals. As Pastors used to say when I was in Bible college “We have enough Momma called Daddy sent preachers and if you are one of them go home and don’t waste our time

2)    We need a group of individuals that you trust (Mature Christians … This should include pastors and lay-people) that can speak honestly about what God is saying to you and pray with you to hear the voice of God and not of men.

3)    We need to become a Student of the Word of God, and by doing this we see how God moved in the past lives of his saints and we will see how he can and will move and lead in your personal vocation (calling).

Friends, today I have embraced my vocation (calling) with all my education and experience I still serve as the 2nd man to an awesome pastor. Yes, by title I’m the President of a School of Ministry a title I resisted for several years. However, if you ask me personally “what is your ministry challenge” it is simple “Help Dr. Roger Webb reach a world for Christ through the Ministry of Grace Church of the Valley. Yes, it is true that God has seen fit to give me the additional Ministry Challenge of impacting lives within a Mental Health Hospital as a Chaplain, ironically, I view that as a great teaching opportunity.

Ladies and Gentlemen, find and accept your ministry challenge and move forward with what God has for you to accomplish.


Wednesday, April 17, 2019

Time fly's


Wow how time fly’s when you are having fun doing what you love. It is also very hard to believe that it was 35 years ago today on (April 17th) that I was Ordained by the Pastors and my home Church at the Flint Baptist Temple (Burton, Michigan) into the ministry. Ironically, I was ordained on my parent’s anniversary who would have be celebrating their 60th today (they both passed away in 2009).  I would not be where I am in ministry today without their encouragement and support, of my parents and some awesome Men of God that he used to train me to be the minister, teacher, and preacher I am today. Thank you all I miss you!

Friday, April 12, 2019

To excited


Too excited ….

              The past year has been an amazing time in my life, as I have just turned 59 years old and pushing that BIG 6-0, and have just celebrated 33 years of marriage to my Best Friend.  I’m seeing God move in my life like no other time.  Now don’t get me wrong we have seen God move and had lots of great ministry opportunities over the years.

              However, now just seems like that TIME of Great Opportunities …
              In June of 2018 I was given the privilege to become the Chaplain at Summit Behavioral Healthcare (State of Ohio Dept of Mental Health Hospital in Cincinnati, Ohio) a full-time position ministering to both the patients and staff.

              Four years ago, the Lord directed my wife Lee and I to Grace Church of the Valley an awesome church with some of the most amazing people. Shortly, after starting at GCOTV Pastor Roger Webb asked me to be President of GCOTV School of Ministry (https://gcotv.com/connect/school-of-ministry/) . We are now coming up on completing our third year and having our 2nd Graduation with a told of 7 graduates (with last years graduation and this years). We have also gone global …

              Wow never thought we would see this opportunity to impact the world … Just two months ago (February 2019) we published “The Study in the Life of Christ & the Gospels” and made it FREE to pastors, churches, colleges, and other ministries through out Africa. We simply contacted many of the folks I have on my LinkedIn and Facebook accounts and asked them if they wanted it. The response was amazing; within two months we have students completing the course in Liberia, Kenya, Uganda, Nigeria, Ethiopia and Eritreans. With at least 70 students working on the course and that number could be higher.  We have recently reached out to individuals with connections in India, Haiti, Nepal, Pakistani, Argentine, and other countries. We can’t wait to see what God does.  When the individual completes the course of study either individuality or as a group, they receive a “Certificate of Completion” from GCOTV School of Ministry.

              Another great opportunity for us at GCOTV School of Ministry our Pastor/Chancellor Dr. Roger Webb will be in Kenya this summer ministering to a group of pastors and upon completion of the program we will grant them a Certificate of Completion in Excellence of Christian Leadership.  We have also received invitations (not yet accepted) to minister in Uganda. I’m sure there will be other invitations over time.

              Friends, we do have a Prayer Request, over the years the Lord has continued to lay on my heart the pastors and ministers of the Appalachian Region of America, in providing educational opportunities to individuals that are seeking help in better communicating God’s word. We are currently seeking to partner with churches or ministries to accomplish this vision.  Please pray God open’s the perfect connection.

              Of course, I continue to serve on the Faculty and Board of Aidan University in Jacksonville, FL and as an Adjunct Faculty of New Life Temple Bible College (Cincinnati, Ohio) … Wow I sound busy! But it is about the fun of serving Christ and impacting lives with the Gospel ….

Do me a HUGE Favor …
Pray that God gives us opportunities to impact the World even more!
Rev. Don Allen, Jr. PhD

If you know of someone that would like to partner with us on the “Study in the Life of Christ and the Gospels” please have them contact me @


Monday, March 11, 2019

Reflecting on God’s calling!

As I was reading my devotional "Time with God" this morning I was intrigued by the call of Matthew/Levi the Tax Collector. The story plays out in three separate passages of scriptures (Matthew 9:9 and Mark 2:14; and Luke 5:27) in two of the verses the name is Levi in the other it is Matthew, so why the difference? The answer is simple Matthew the name Greek form with the meaning "gift of Jehovah" and Levi is Hebrew with the meaning "Gift of Yahweh."

So, what makes this individual unique in his calling? We must understand the term Tax Collector, this is a Jew that works for the Roman government collecting taxes for the Roman’s to finance their wars and lavish lifestyles, basically it was believed that he was stealing from the poor to finance the rich. Matthew/Levi lifestyle was funded by any additional money he could extort from people beyond what they owed and what the government paid him as a salary. We know for fact he was an employee of the Roman’s, as well as a tax collector who was educated and had a good business sense.
I love the simple but direct wording of Jesus to Matthew! Follow (Strong’s Concordance states it means "to follow one who precedes, join him as his attendant, accompany him :") ME! (Jesus Christ, the Way, the Truth, and the Life, the Teacher/Rabbi, King of Kings, Lord of Lords, and the guy that in just a few years will die on the Cross for you and the entire world.


I’m convinced that Christ is simply stating the obvious "Follow Me." Focusing on the event just shortly after Matthew’s calling, we see the impact that Matthew has on his friends, he invited the other Tax collectors (the cities outcast into one room) to dinner and introduced them to Jesus. I’m often amazed at the excitement and simplicity of new Christians and their desire to introduce their friends to Jesus. They don’t care about the critics, the people judging them, people questioning their motives, they simply want their friends to know Jesus.

As I reflect on this story (passage) I must ask myself and you three questions.
Have I (you) met Jesus, the savior of the world? However, more importantly is He the savior of your personal soul?
Have you chosen to FOLLOW HIM as he has called you to? And, as you follow him have you become a disciple (student) of Christ?
Have you invited any of your friends recently to meet your Savior and Friend Jesus Christ?

As we reflect on these three questions, it is imperative that we Know HIM (Christ) as Savior, we are Following HIM to be His disciple (student) and sharing our faith with others is the foundation of Christ’s calling today for us.

Like Levi/Matthew are you Following HIM?

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Not a time for silence!


              For decades I have sat on the sidelines of the abortion issue, knowing in my heart it was wrong and arguing privately with people that it was. However, not writing or publicly taking a major stand.

              With the resent vote of 44 United States Senators including all the current Democratic Presidential candidates and the recent signing into law of the authorization (law) to allow abortion up to the moment prior to birth is a disgrace.

 In 1973 the decision of Roe vs Wade shocked most of America stating that a women has the right to choose if her unborn baby lives or dies, and then ask a doctor to perform the abortion. This goes against the very foundation of American history and our values as Judeo-Christians that we have claimed for two centuries.  Science has been ignored, there is no logical conclusion that life doesn’t begin at conception. However, a group of people thought they know more than God, Science, and due to their own selfish choice to allow abortion.

              We have come a long way not only in America but around the world since the end of World War II (I love studying history) and it is often said if we fail to study history, we are going to repeat it. Sadly, the US Senate and the Governors have repeated history. The two documents below detail the events of the Nuremburg Trials that took place following World War II where 14 German Men were charged and found guilty of War Crimes (among their crimes ordering, condoning, or committing abortions).  I challenge you to read the articles and understand that our Senators, Governors, Abortion rights groups, and abortion doctors are no different than that of the NAZI they so desperately condemn.

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Friday, February 22, 2019

What is the greatest threat to the church today?



            Is radical Islam the greatest threat to the church today? Is the socialist agenda that is being pushed today the greatest threat? Without reservation I will say NO!

Within the political climate of our day we see the Socialist, Islamic extremist, and liberal bias flooding the news, the social media, and sadly even the pulpits of America. Church leaders opening the doors to individuals that have a radical different belief to that of Christianity in order to promote Social Justice, Tolerance, and yes even harmony.

I heard it several years ago and have realized how true it is today with our current environment, “if you’re living for God people aren’t going to like it!”

I have concluded in my own personal life, and I believe it based on the foundational truths of the scripture.  The greatest threat to the church today is “Casual Christian’s” … What do I mean by that statement: Just like Casual dads/mom they have a relationship with their children, but they are not providing for them or actively involved in their children’s’ lives. I think we have a lot of “Casual Christians” men/women that have met Christ but have not grown in a relationship with Christ and aren’t participating in that relationship.

I see five things that “Casual Christians” need to change!

1)      Casual Christians need to stop looking for the world’s answers to their spiritual questions, they need to stop accepting every teaching that comes over social media as the gospel, and they need to stop listening to the unbiblical teaching of the day.

2)     Casual Christians need to pull their Bibles out (yes, I’m talking about the paper copy) of the desk drawer, off the bookshelf, or from under the bed and read it. Write in it, study it, compare scriptures and learn what it says for you!

3)     Casual Christians need to find and attend a Bible teaching church. It is time to stop attending the social club and the self-motivational church that only promotes feeling good about yourself and teaching what the social culture of the day said we should teach and ignore the truth of scripture.

4)    Casual Christians need to be discipled! Hangout with mature Christians that can help you grow and walk out your Christian faith.

5)     Casual Christians need to understand the facts of the Bible:

a.     The Bible is the Word of God from cover to cover, and everybody will be judged by it.

b.     Jesus Christ was born of the Virgin Mary and lived a sinless life on this Earth.

c.     Jesus Christ died on the Cross for our Sins, and whether we like it or not; it is only through that sacrifice we will get into heaven and miss hell.

d.     Jesus Christ arose from the grave on the 3rd day, and because of that event we have assurance that we will be with him in heaven if we accept him into our heart as Lord and Savior.

e.     Jesus Christ defeated the devil (regardless if you believe he is real or not) and has taken away the devils power over my life.

The facts are simple! Jesus loves me, but he made the provision for my eternity through his personal will for us (written out in the Bible) … Know me (Trust Christ as Savior), Follow me (do it my way), Proclaim me (share who I am with others), Keep my Commandments (what I say you can and can’t do), and stop being a Casual Christian and become a “Active Child of the King”.

Monday, February 11, 2019

Open Letter to Pastors and Friends:


 Dear Friends:

            As many of you know that in 2002 my family and I moved to New York City to develop a post 9/11 ministry. Despite some challenges and eventually moving back to Cincinnati in early 2003 God did allow some awesome relationships to come from the NYC experience.

            The number one relationship that came from the trip was a friendship with Dr. Charles Travis Founder/President of Logos Global Network and at the time was Chancellor of Logos University in Jacksonville, Florida. Over the years we have prayed together, laughed, and encouraged each other in ministry (honestly, I would have to say he has done most of the encouraging).  A few years ago, as the Lord lead Dr. Travis and several others to launch a new Christian University he called and asked if I would join the faculty and serve on the Board of Regents. I was so honored by the call and without hesitation the answer was YES.

            We are now into our second year and I have the privilege of working with not only Dr. Travis but some amazing men and women of God to establish a world-wide ministry that will impact nations with the Gospel of Christ. 

            As President of Grace Church of the Valley School of Ministry my heart is to educate and equip the local church and community to impact those around us. However, as a Board member and Faculty member or Aidan University my heart is to impact the regions around the world educating and equipping pastors, counselors, and church members to impact their communities and church.

            I’m currently in the process of working with Dr. Travis and others to establish a cohort for Master’s and Doctoral level students in the field of Christian Counseling. If this is something you would be interested in, please let the office staff know.

            If you are looking for an awesome online Christian University that will work with you to achieve your educational goals, please contact my friends @ Aidan University. If you have questions for me personally, I can be reached at midwest@lgnfamily.org 

Saturday, January 26, 2019

What is my role within the church?


What is my role within the church?

              For the past several weeks I have been teaching a course at Grace Church of the Valley School of Ministry on the Five-fold Ministry, using text Ephesians 4: 11 in the KJV it reads …

“And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;” and the 

Amplified Bible (AMP): “11 And [His gifts to the church were varied and] He Himself appointed some as apostles [special messengers, representatives], some as prophets [who speak a new message from God to the people], some as evangelists [who spread the good news of salvation], and some as pastors and teachers [to shepherd and guide and instruct],”

I found the past few years very interesting as I have spent time preparing and studying material and lectures for this course at GCOTV School of Ministry.   I look at scripture within the context it is written and the historical perspective of the church that much of what I was taught growing up in the Fundamental Baptist as well as attended some great Baptist colleges.  I missed some great blessings of scripture. This passage of scripture is one of those blessings. I was taught or better yet indoctrinated that passages such as this and references to Gifts of the Spirit stopped at the time the Scripture (Bible) was completed (basically stating that they ceased at the Apostle Johns death).

Today as a Professor of Pastoral Theology, Minister, and Student of the Word of God I attempt to look at the scripture through the church worldwide not through the limited scope of a denomination, college, or the teaching of one particular preacher or pastor.  As ministers we often quote: 2 Timothy 3:16 Holman Christian Standard Bible (HCSB) “16 All Scripture is inspired by God and is profitable for teaching, for rebuking, for correcting, for training in righteousness,” if we truly agree with this then we must agree that the passages we disagree with are inspired.

So, what about the passage in Ephesians where the Apostle Paul writes: He gave (of course we know that the Apostle Paul is referring to Christ) Apostles, Prophets, Evangelist, Pastors, and Teachers so let’s break this down into simple terms:

1)      Apostle … The simple meaning of the word is “Messenger or Representative” these individuals have a clear understanding of the word of God both the “Logos Word” which is the written word we find within scripture and the “Rhema Word” that God uses men to share with individuals to uplift and move forward in the ministry.

2)      Prophet … The simple meaning of the word is “Proclaimer of Truth” of what God is doing with the in the church, world, and within individuals lives.

3)      Evangelist … The simple meaning of this word is “Soul-winner” this individual doesn’t see people he/she see soul’s individuals that need a personal relationship with Christ and they will go out of their way to share the truth with them.

4)      Pastor … The Elders, Bishops, and Overseers of the local assembly of believers, the shepherd of the flock the individual that God mandated to feed the sheep, protect the sheep, and care for the sheep.

5)      Teacher … The individual that is entrusted to take the Body of Christ deeper into the understanding of the Word.  Preparing individuals to defend the faith and share the foundation truths of scripture within the Body of Christ so that the church is effective in ministering to those within and in the community.



Personally, I have noticed a few “what I will call” rules for these Gifts …

                                  I.            They are never self-proclaimed, they are always God appointed with confirmation of the local Body of Christ or denomination.

                                 II.            They always operate within the authority of the local Body of Christ or denomination and under the leadership of that ministry or with the Local church or denomination providing wise-counsel and direction.

                               III.             They have a personal devotion and desire to continue to study the word of God and seek God’s face daily to advance themselves in their personal relationship with God (with the Father, Son and Holy Spirit)

                              IV.            All of them have one central theme or desire …. Build the Body of Christ!



Back to my original question: “What is my role within the church?” …

              Sadly, it took me over 25 years to find and understand my role within the Body of Christ. Even though I was always teaching serving as Children’s Pastor, Men’s Leader, and Pastoring (either as Senior Pastor or Associate) I always felt I was missing something.  About four years ago the Lord led my wife and I to Grace Church of the Valley and Pastor Roger Webb who walks out the Gifts of the Spirit, and especially the gift of discernment.  After one conversation, he simply said, “You have the gift of teaching, I want you to teach and lead my School of Ministry” and the rest is history …

              I would encourage every pastor, minister, and member of the Body of Christ to identify your Gift and seek wisdom in how you can apply it to help build the Body of Christ. Don’t fill a spot because there is a need, find a ministry because there is a passion.


Thursday, January 17, 2019

Change your Thinking!




              This past week I have begun reading the daily devotional New Testament entitled “Time with God” my reading this morning was from Matthew 4: 12 – 5:12 discussing the statement of Jesus “Come Follow Me”

              As Jesus was calling the disciples, he stated “Change your heart and lives, because the kingdom of heaven is near.”  As I reflected on those 12 simple words, I was thinking how that I along with so many miss the importance of change. When I was eight years old and made a profession of faith when I trusted Christ as my Savior, I made a change. I was not going to live like others, I was going to live a true Christian life. When I was thirteen and felt the call to preach, I made the change that I was going to dedicate my life to sharing the love of Christ (telling anyone that would listen about his death, burial, and resurrection) so that they could have the same relationship I have with him.

              Over the past 51 years of the Christian walk I have learned a few things about Change!

         I’m the one required to Change! God is sovereign and has absolute knowledge and therefore when the scripture states, “I’m (God talking) the same yesterday, today, and forever” He means it. So, the question is “What must I change?”

         I must change my thinking to agree with his! Where do I find his thinking or words, within the context of the Bible (His Holy Word) …? I find it ironic that people say, “God really didn’t mean that” Sorry to give you the bad news Yes, He Did! What God calls sin is sin, don’t call it good! If my thinking about Sin doesn’t line up with God’s written word then someone must change their thinking, and guess who loses? ME!

         Change is Good! When I came to the understanding that change is good, was when I came into the understanding and will of God and allowed myself to follow him.  Peter, Andrew, James and John were told “Follow me (Christ)” If we are following Christ, it requires Change and a new direction.

I would have never thought as a teenager and wanting to preach and pastor that I would be Chaplain in a State Mental Health Hospital or serving as President of a School of Ministry and Teaching college level courses at several colleges.  My parents, pastors, and I had a plan that I would attend college then pastor a nice size church with a nice income, nice parsonage, and an expense account. But change happens! God changed my vision and plans, Change helps define who we are and where God wants us.

       The question to ask your self today is “How have I reacted to change”?  When I’m working with the patients at the hospital, I use this illustration; you can either do one of two things when change comes (1) you can RE-ACT which means that you don’t think about it and you simply become upset or do things with your thinking and generally get yourself in trouble or (2) you can ACT which means you seek wise counsel and come up with a plan to use the change to yours and God’s advantage and find a way to serve him in the change. 

       What are you going to do wih Change?

Monday, January 14, 2019

Wow is all you can say


Wow is all you can say!



When you read headlines like “Feds Seize Enough Fentanyl in 2018 to Kill Nearly Twice the U.S. Population.” (www.breitbart.com/politics/2019/01/13/fentanyl-2018-seizure) It is time for America to take notice, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continues to report increasing numbers of people dying from Opiate related death, some organization and agency reporting as high as 75,000 per year, over recent years. The reality is that anyone one of us could be a part of these numbers if we use an Opiate without doctor supervision and for an extended period of time.

Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid pain reliever, more addictive than Heroin or Morphine, and deadlier than any drug we have seen in history. When I had my knee replacements several years ago, I was given Fentanyl for the pain, and the relieve was great. However, the fear of addiction was even greater. The Reality is that I could have learned to love that feeling of utopia and knowing that right then nothing in the world mattered. I only used the fentanyl a few times, and then moved to OxyContin which is also and opiate and eventually of the drugs over short periods of time.  The reality is that Opiates of any kind our not met to be a permit solution to pain, they are a temporary solution to get through a temporary crisis.  It was imperative that I had the support of family, friends, and church to help remain focus on my recovery from the surgery with the limited use of Pain Medication.

Over the past 27 years that I have been an Alcohol and Drug Counselor, and a Pastor I have counseled, prayed with, and attempted to help 1000’s of addicts many addicted to Opioids.  Reality is that we have a national epidemic and the CHURCH must step up and help! Not with a judgmental attitude, but with a heart of compassion. In my book “Drug Epidemic: Impact on Families and Churches” I attempt to help the church find it voice and be a part of the solution. Three things that I believe are so relevant for the church in this crisis!

1.      Understand the facts of drugs and addiction, not simply what you read in the newspaper, hear from the pulpit, or from your personal experience.

2.     Understand that God has a journey and healing for every addict, and it maybe not be the same path or journey God took you on. Some individuals may need to walk through Recovery and learn the tools to remain sober, other may have a divine intervention. However, whichever God chooses the outcome sought is always the same sobriety and disciple them in their walk with HIM (Christ).

3.       Pray, Pray, and Pray some more! Some one told me recently that is to simple! I have come to conclusion that God likes simple. Two things I have learned about prayer! (1) God promise to help me or someone I’m praying for when I pray! (2) I can’t be judging them when my heart is in prayer for them. Pray for God perfect solution for their recovery not my opinion.



If you would like to check out my book Drug Epidemic: Impact on Families and Churches we have several ways to get a copy!

Paperback copy @





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