Tuesday, January 31, 2006

He's alive!

The sound of your cell phone going off at 0400 is not good. You fight back the desire to hit ignore on the console until you see it’s from one of your Drill SGTs. That’s what happened this morning. I answered the phone to an apologetic soldier. “Sir, I’m sorry to bother you, but one of our soldiers has had a heart attack and is not breathing and has no pulse! Can you come in; some of the other soldiers are pretty shook up!” I immediately started praying. I didn’t even know what to pray for. I called my chaplain assistant and had him to start praying as well. All I could think about was how I was going to handle the death of one of our soldiers. What was I going to say to my young privates? These are the times in life that mark us and make us. I arrived on post and hurried to the company area prepared for the worst. I entered the CA area and there were MP’s paramedics and my Drill SGT all standing there remarkably calm. In fact they were smiling. I found it odd since we had just lost a soldier. But then, the reason for the smiles came to light. They had been able to revive him! He was alive! I stopped and thanked God. I thanked God for a lot of things. I thanked him for two young soldiers that were doing their jobs and stayed awake when they should have been. I thanked God for a Drill SGT that has 17 years experience as a Para-medic. I thanked God for medics on this post that responded so quickly. There is much to be thankful for this morning.

Update: I just returned from our local hospital. Just over 24 hours from being dead and cold on the floor of his barracks, this young private is sitting up in his bed talking to us. His mom and dad drove all night to get here. The joy of a life saved is contagious. The Drill SGT that saved his life was able to come by this morning and see the young man. It was hard to fight back the tears as we explained to the soldier what happened to him. Of how he was lifeless and his Drill SGT refused to give up on him. Even when it looked hopeless, he refused to give up. We say that a lot in the Army, but SSG Jim Marcus refused to quit on that kid. Jim told me that in 17 years he has only seen two people come back like this, but today it is three! Give praise to God for a life saved!

Sunday, January 29, 2006

He did it agian!

Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.
13 And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.

I am continually amazed at what God’s word can do. I have given my life to the proclamation of the Gospel, the good news. It really is good news. I have been privileged to proclaim this gospel many times in the last 12 years. Sometimes its just a couple of people in a small group or even just me and another over a cup of coffee. Sometimes it’s before a large group. But it never ceases to stun me when people really do respond to this message of Christ. If you think about it logically its not very logical. To think we would need to release our lives to a guy who lived 2000 years ago. He never wrote a book or commanded an Army. He was poor. He was humble, yet behind all that He was the most courageous, powerful, loving being that ours or any other world has ever seen. And 2000 years later people still come to Him. Its because He’s alive and still moving among us. They are broken and in need. They know their failings. They know that they need a savior. Yet, when I see them come I want to stop everything and scream out, “Are you sure?!!!! Did you hear what I just said? You must totally give up your life to someone you cannot see!” And yet they still come. So we rejoice today that as the Scripture above says, God’s Word is alive! It is active, powerful and sharp. Once again today the simple message of the Gospel was proclaimed and 22 of America’s soldiers came to receive the greatest gift ever. I stand humbled and shocked. If you have prayed for us here, thank you so much! May God continue to bless the work here at FT Jackson. May He bring and end to the war. May He return to set up His Kingdom. Till them we press on and proclaim the Truth, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners and make them righteous in the eyes of Almighty God.

Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Tuesday Update

Greetings out there! Its been a while since I’ve updated my blog. I had some really cool pictures to upload of DS Danes and DS Miranda but my Palm Pilot had a brain poot and all my unsaved data went into the twilight zone. So, no pictures today. I’d just like to ask for your prayers this week. Tomorrow and Thursday we’ll be getting 1000 brand new soldiers into our Battalion. That means a couple of things. One it means the hours in everyone’s week just doubled. It also means that opportunities have just come up. Think of it, 1000 young people with no idea what is about to happen to them. Think of the possibilities. Think of all the families they left behind, the moms and dads, husbands wives and children. They have all joined willingly in a time of war. I know some join due to duress in their lives, but most join for bigger reasons than running or money. So if you could this week pray for the young privates. Also pray for my Drill Sergeants and my Company Command staffs. Days are fixin to get long. If you’d like every Tuesday I’m fasting and praying for my soldiers among other things. Jesus had much to say on the subject of fasting. I’m not exactly sure why or how it works, but it does. So if you can join me in Tuesday prayer and fasting days. If you do let me know how God is changing you through this time. Much love to everyone back in Statesville and Rowan County. Thanks for your continued support and encouragement. I’ll be home in about 14 months!
Hooah, “Break Through”!

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Kenny Got Saved!

They're baaaacccckkkk! Jared, Brian, Jeff and Dean of our favorite band "Kenny Got Saved" will be returning to lead worship for us on Feburary 12th. I cannot tell you how excited I am to have these guys back. In case you didn't know they volunteer their time to us. As soldiers service to our country is a given, but many times we forget about the support we get in doing our job. These guys give up their time and their talents to come and lead us in some of the best music you'll hear. They are in the process of finishing their first CD and I can't wait to hear it. You can link to their web page on my links section and find out more about them. They are musicains but they are also family guys. They bring thier wives and kids to service with them. Jared hasn't been caught yet, but I have a feeling his days are numbered. They also love Jesus. They give this minsitry to us and the treasures they are storing up are incomaparble to all the riches this earth has to offer. So thanks again to them! If you are in the FT Jackson area on the 12th of Feburary or the 28th stop in and see. Jesus said those words "Come and See!" There will be about 500 soldiers there and it'll be a time of worship and fellowship that won't be the same without you.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Wow what a day!

The following takes place between 2245 and 2300…OK…for those of us who got hooked on 24 last year today was the big day! It was a great day at FT Jackson! 5 young soldiers came to faith in Christ at our morning service. I got to counsel 17 soldiers this afternoon the Panthers won and 24 was premiering tonight! Can I hear you say a “banner day!” It seems that the devil had his sights set on my day of days. Just at the end of the most excellent of days, I’m tuned in with anticipation to the last 10 minutes of 24. The fate of the world hangs in the balance. Jack Bauer is once again in the middle of an impossible scenario. How will he get out of this one? The last commercial comes on and right when the closing scene approaches what happens? My local news decides to preempt the last 10 minutes! WHAT?!!!! Yes, they did. Instead of heart pounding intrigue I got a local story about some trees that blew down in some guys back yard! Oh brother! So I called home and Tammy narrated the last scene to me over the phone. I guess it’s the next best thing to being there!
All kidding aside, the best part of my day was seeing people find Jesus, find life and find truth. No TV show could ever compete with the Power of God. No cliffhanger could ever replace that moment just as the invitation to life with Christ is given. Unlike TV shows the story of the Gospel is life and death. Its as real as it gets and praise Him for His continued work in our midst. Thank you all for praying! Hope everybody has a great week.

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Crossroads Worldwide

     Are you looking for a place for teenagers or college students to get their spiritual batteries charged? Are you looking for a ministry to help you with discipleship and growth? Are you looking for a ministry that is relevant yet refuses to compromise truth or standards? Yes? Well I’d like to point you in the direction of Crossroads Worldwide. It was founded by my buddy Clayton King 10 years ago and I’ve been privileged to be a part of it for the last 8 years. Crossroads provides summer camps, discipleship weekends, ministry summits and mission trip leadership. Here’s a blurb off their web-site.

Mission Statement: Crossroads is an interdenominational Ministry designed to meet and love people as they are with God's truth, teaching them how to effectively live for Christ in the real world while sharing God's grace with those around them. It is the desire of Crossroads to make disciples of all people, encouraging and nurturing those who love Jesus, and winning those who do not yet know Him.

Here is what some have said from the summer camps at Crossroads

  1. "The Spirit and focus of discipleship was absolutely incredible. The students loved and respected the realness and transparency of the worship, speakers, and workshop teachers."

  2. "Never in a million years did I expect to walk away from this experience so Blessed. Every workshop I attended with my kids was clear powerful and applicable to their lives. The Lord worked through you all."

  3. "I love the discipleship emphasis of Crossroads. The welcome we when got to Camp was very impressive. My youth want to come back to Crossroads next summer. Thanks for al you did to make our week life changing."

  4. "Thank you for not being afraid to be deep, bold and real with the Lord. Students need that as they prepare to go to college. I am so glad that you guys are giving them a solid foundation to become men and women of God"
I highly encourage you to make Crossroads a part of the discipleship of the generations pursuit of the Lord Jesus. You can check out their stuff at www.claytonking.com

Sunday, January 08, 2006

Thanks to Dave's class!

Many thanks go our to my home away from home at Dave Moss’s Sunday School class. For those of you among that group thank you for your continued support of me and my family. This picture was taken as I spoke a few Sunday’s ago. As you can see it’s a raucous group of believers. I expect the thing I love about these folks is their genuine concern every time I see them. I always shocked at the level of care they give each other. With Tammy just getting out of the hospital we have received phone calls, food, firewood and more care than we could possibly imagine. Out of this group there are missionaries, moms, students, national speakers, firemen, business men and just plain good folks. Thank you again to everyone. You are all in my prayers! You can check out the website for their church at http://www.westernavenue.org/
If you are in the Statesville NC, area go by and check them out. Watch out for the guy in the front row with the striped shirt. I hear he’s been known to partake in “forgggery (pronounced with a hard g) and yooterring”!

George...Do you yearn?

The pain of separation is a gift! For the last 18 days I’ve been at home in NC away from my work at the “Fort”. I spent 18 days with my wife and kids. It is the longest we’ve been together in nearly a year. 18 days was long enough for me to get used to being with them. I left there reluctantly this morning at 0600. I left with my wife crying. She had some surgery last week and is on the mend right now. Since last week I was privileged to wait on her hand and foot. She needed everything done for her and what an honor it was. I left her this morning all snuggled in bed with our new electric blanket to come back to work and I’ve spent the better part of today by myself missing her. I’ve even missed my disobedient son. I’ve missed my daughter twirling around the house. I’ve missed the noise of a house with children. How is it that separation is a gift you say? I’ve realized that the pain of being away, the longing for closeness is God’s way of reminding me that I’m also to long for what I cannot see. I miss my family, but even when I’m with them, I long for something else. In the immortal words of Kramer on Seinfeld, “George, do you yearn?!” Well it’s true; I yearn for a land I have not seen. I yearn not for money or fame or power. I yearn for the home I’ve never been to. I long to see the fields Jesus has planted and tended since His return there. I dream of what life will be like there. I want to see the river of God and drink deeply from it. I want to eat from the tree of Life. I want to run and laugh and most of all I don’t want to be separated ever again from those I love. I think that will be the beauty of heaven, the absence of unsatisfied desire. So in the pain of absence, I sit and write encouraged, reminded, that coming sooner than later will be the elimination of the pain of separation. Till then the hurt reminds me I’m alive. It reminds me that there are those that hurt but have no hope. It reminds me that the proclamation of the Story continues. Jesus, May your unfailing love rest upon us Lord as we put our hope in You! Till then I wait, I work, I pray, I hurt, I long, I yearn and I hope for what I cannot yet see.

The songs of life- Thanks to mom

My home was filled with music and people growing up. Mom loved music and can play an assortment of instruments but her favorites are th...