The Hands and Feet...

Lately I have been thinking a lot about what it means to "be the hands and feet of Jesus". For a long time I thought it had a lot to do with missions work. Then in recent months I started to realize that it wasn't just missions (international in particular) it was about so much more than that. Yet, once again my view on what this meant began to be jaded. I started to think that the best possible way to be the hands and feet were to be on staff at a church, working in the ministry (and by working I mean getting paid). I was so focused on finding a job at a church I think I lost the true meaning of the name of my small group. The small group I recently joined is called Christos Doulos (Christ Servants), and at first I was so moved by how fitting that title was. Until I allowed myself to be so focused on the money portion of ministry. Now I'm not naive, I realize ministry doesn't always pay well monetarily, but I thought that was the best way to serve my Savior. Little did I know God would use a very unexpected event to change my thinking...


Two weeks ago on a Sunday afternoon I didn't even leave the church until 1:30, I had been there since 8:45, but it felt like I had only been there for 20 minutes. God filled that time with so many awesome conversations, experiences, and moments that it was overwhelming. After church I got the opportunity to help a family in need with other members of our church. Over the last two weeks I have strengthened relationships with new friends from CCC, one guy that I really look up too, and this family that I was so blessed by in having the opportunity to help them. Today, I was again asked to assist in something with this situation. It was then that my dear friend Chuck said to the man we were helping, that "no thanks or money was needed, this was what it meant to be the hands and feet of Jesus". It hit me hard....


Just standing in the rain on a cold Sunday afternoon allowed me to truly be the hands and feet of Jesus. It also revealed to me that the little things I do each week, or have the opportunity to do and miss out on are all ways to show Christ to others. Whether it be a mission trip, Sunday school, a Youth Convention, or helping a family in need, doing it just for the glory of God is what it means to be the hands and feet of Jesus. It's about being mobile in all areas of life. It's about going out and doing things just because you know they are the right things to do.


Now, to wrap this up... This in no way means that I don't still have a passion to work on staff for a church, especially my church. BUT it does mean that I have redefined my life and what it means to be a servant of Christ. I still have the utmost respect and admiration for those that work inside the ministry and the church. Yet I also realize that being a part of the ministry is so much more than working for the church. It's about working for Jesus, and doing all things to glorify HIM.

Grace and Peace


The Great Rescue


I have always wanted to start a post that way, mission accomplished I suppose... When I was in middle school I began searching-- like most kids my age (13-14) I started to feel the pressures of becoming a teenager, I started to realize things were going to change right before my eyes and I didn't know how to deal with those changes. You see, like many kids at the stage in life I didn't... fit. It seemed then that everywhere I went I failed to fit in... I was sort of a misfit. On the outside no one knew that I felt this way, or what I was dealing with on the inside. I was so far removed (on my own accord) from things that I had no where to run... no one to talk to (at least that's what the enemy told me)... and so instead-


It was natural. I sat at a computer in my room and began pouring my heart into those keys. Each keystroke was like removing a penny from the pile of thousands that had been crushing my soul. No one ever read the majority of those early writing, a few still remain, but the majority were lost with my childhood in a fiery blaze. I didn't realize when the writing began that it would become my biggest outlet for the pain, struggle, trial, tribulations, joys, excitement, and confusion that have been drops of water in the glass of life. I didn't realize this release, this escape that my "anguished" teenage (early at best) heart was relying on would become my spiritual gift (*Disclaimer: Others have called it that, I simply refer to it as a way to organize my thoughts). I never realized that God was behind it all, because during those years (13-17) I didn't give God credit for much of anything.


You (the reader, yeah you the person sitting at your computer thinking why in the world is this nut job still talking to me in parenthesis) might be thinking, where is this going? Tonight I got to hear from the founder of To Write Love On Her Arms. Something he said resonated inside me.. Psalm 34:18 says "The Lord is close to the brokenhearted, he rescues those whose spirits are crushed". You see in my brokenhearted moments God has been there all along and when He couldn't get my attention He planted a seed. He rescued my spirit by giving me an escape, by pushing me to press that first key. He's been rescuing me in the same way ever since. If you have ever read any previous posts you might notice something- Each time I post it's generally about a lesson God has taught, a revelation, a desire, a need or a moment of confusion in which I needed clarity. In all of those instances God is using those thoughts, those words to rescue me from myself, because inherently, I bottled things up and over analyzed everything, before I started writing.. God threw me a life vest to keep me from drowning myself in a sea of ignorance, depression, self-deprecation and brokenness. The best part, is now, I can pray to be broken, because my brokenness is an opportunity for God to put me back together, He will inevitably rescue the pieces and put them back together in a way that will better glorify Him.


What in your life is drowning you? Is it an internal affliction or an external attack that has you thrashing in the ocean of life, silently screaming for help? Have you asked for a life vest, or has God thrown you one, an you don't even realize it? Define that hobby that just feels normal, that feels like a release. What is that one thing you do that while doing it you feel the pressure lesson? Identify it, give thanks to Christ for it, establish time on a regular basis to work at it, share it with the world, and make sure you do it for the glory of the Kingdom.

Allow God to Rescue You

Grace and Peace


A Hunter's Church

For those of you that live in or around Bartholomew County and actually read the newspaper, this will make a lot more sense to you than it will to others. Tonight, I got home from a small group called The Merge and decided to peruse my local newspaper. Now, I will be the first to admit that I normally come home extremely moved and excited about whatever we discussed in small group, and this night was no different. We had watched a short excerpt (not the whole thing lol) of a film that was shown at CIY. This film was about the persecution of Christians in foreign lands (more on this in future posts). The stories were horrific, and it made me sad in more ways than one. I was sad for those suffering in that way, and I was sad that I at times consider myself to be a persecuted Christian when, to date, the worst persecution I have faced is maybe losing a friend or being made fun of for my faith... Then I picked up the newspaper and the front page headline read: "Hunting for God" and was accompanied by a picture of a bunch of hunters on their knees in a sanctuary presumably praying that they kill the biggest buck of the season. Now, before I go on I must clarify, I have nothing against hunters. In fact, many of my friends hunt, I would like to one day also hunt, and I have a great amount of respect for the skill and patience it takes. However, from reading the headline and looking at the picture, I found myself persecuting these "so-called Christians". I thought to myself, seriously? Are you really going to make a mockery of faith in Christ... this is blasphemy! (I had a small angry rant that was only stated in my head) and then...


I realized that I was persecuting my brothers (and sisters) in Christ based on a headline. Remember that thing your Granny used to say when you were little? The whole, "Don't judge a book by it's cover little _______ (insert your name + ie at the end). I was convicted. So I read the article, and it's a good thing I did. If I hadn't read it, then by assuming I knew what it was about I would have made an.. well you know what they say about assuming. Anyway, I read the article and I was amazed at the innovative twist someone had put on reaching others for the Kingdom. This was a legitimate church service, with a real Pastor, real prayers for safety and harvest, attended by real Christians, real sinners, real unbelievers, the whole nine-yards. These are people that found something they love, the outdoors and ammunition, and turned it into an opportunity to reach the lost. Not only were they using hunting as a way to share the Gospel with other hunters, they were using their harvest (the Republic's fancy way of saying "truckloads of dead deer") to feed hungry families who had very little to eat, or money to spend. They were truly Hunting for God. I was moved. The story even talks about some people that attended the service with a friend or relative, and a year, two or three later they had found salvation in being reborn in Christ. What an amazing way to use your hobby to share the Gospel!


What do you love to do in your "spare time"? Is there an innovative way you can turn your hobby into a mission field? Maybe you love to bake, call local churches and ask to be notified of birthdays for widows, elderly, or single moms. Call nursing homes. Love to work in your garage guys? Do the same thing, only use the contacts at the church to find out who might need help just changing their oil to save a few dollars. We can all use our individual talents and passions to pursue a plan to further the Kingdom, it's time to start thinking outside the box.

One last thing, Always, always, always, read the full article before you turn your nose up at something, you never know how it will change your perspective on life.

Grace and Peace,


Guest post... Monday??? Sorry Acuff I stole your idea, but this is important!

I have always had a passion for the lost, especially children. I don't just mean children that are lost spiritually, but that are lost when it comes to having a family, feeling love through a hug, or even lost as to when they will eat again... if you have ever felt led to do something about these things, check out the link below. It's a post written by a friend of mine, and while I don't know him as well as I hope to over the next few years, I know that he has an incredible heart for Christ and missions. It's my pleasure to share this with you. He's in Kenya, working for the Kingdom, and changing lives... check this out!


Grace and Peace


Jumping stream from fanatic to follower...

2 Timothy 2:22- "Flee the evil desires of youth and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart"

I have always talked about being a person with a missional mindset. I have given messages, written blogs, tweeted, updated my facebook, and talked until I am blue in the face about missions work. I have lived it, I've loved it, I long ago decided it was something I am passionate about. This week though, a book I've been reading really got me thinking... Do it I do it for the glory of Christ? Is it all for the Kingdom, or is it for my ticket INTO the Kingdom?


I have been reading Not a fan by Kyle Idleman... for those of you that haven't picked up a copy do it now... When I was perusing the Lifeways Recommends section of the bookstore the other day, I came across this book, looked at it for a few minutes and then sat it down. A friend of mine told me he had read it, there were some good points but he thought I probably wouldn't learn a lot from it because I was already past what it talks about, I wasn't a fan I was already a follower. Ironic how those conversations lead you to want to buy the book even more. So I spent the ten dollars and took it home. After I started reading it, I realized that it was the perfect book for me. The fact that I was so intrigued by the book but someone else told me I didn't need to read it should have made one of those little cartoon lightbulbs go off above my head. As I've been reading I came to the conclusion that I have been a fan of Christ at different points in my life instead of a follower. I hadn't let God interfere with many areas of my life that I truly needed Him too. That's apparently why God put it on my heart to make it the first of many unread books that I own, to read.


I want to follow Christ with such a desire and passion in my heart that I don't even have to ask questions like the one posted above (Do I do it for the glory of Christ). I want to wake up each morning knowing that I am getting out of bed with a heart prepared to do the Lord's work in any situation I face that day. Does this mean that I am delusional and can't recognize that I will inevitably fail? Not at all... I know I will fail and fall short each and every day. That's what is so beautiful about my relationship with Christ though... it doesn't matter. What matters is that I wake up ready to serve Him, ready to further His Kingdom in every way possible. He knows I'm going to fall short, but He also knows my heart and my intentions. He sees inside of me what others miss sometimes, which is not only pain and regret, but desire and yearning. Things that I often don't see in myself. So regardless of my employment status, my lack of a need for an alarm in the morning, or a bedtime, I am going to start living better. I am going to follow Christ, instead of cheering Him on as I would an athlete, musician, comedian, or friend.


I am no longer going to waste my days feeling complacent over the issues that I face. I am so caught up in the first world "problems" that I am facing that I forget about the hardwork, determination, and passion that I was taught by the people I met in Ethiopia. I need to start utilizing my days to work harder on my book, my job hunt, caring for those in need, letting people know that I am thinking of them, praying for those people, communing with other followers, and reaching out to the lost. I want to start a revolution in my city. I want to show people how to love like Jesus loved, but first I have to allow myself to feel His love every minute of every day. I need to love Him the way He has loved me. I am ready. The Time is Now.


Grace and Peace