It has been a wonderful three years blogging at JustinsRefuge.com. I have shared some of my deepest thoughts, and God given ideas and vision. There were many times where I felt the need to retreat from ministry, and this blog provided that refuge. It is a bitter sweet time, where I turn the page from the past, and look to the future of what God is going to do in my life.
I have read a lot of books over the years, and my book shelves are blessed to have such authors as Andy Stanley, Rick Warren, John Maxwell, Mark Driscoll, Mark Batterson, Adrian Rogers, and many other greats. I am privileged to announce that I will be adding the Empowered Leader by Calvin Miller to my “favorite books” shelf. This has to be the greatest book on leadership that I have ever read.
I read this book as part of a church planting network to encourage and generate conversation during one of our Mega-Meetings, and it did much more than encourage, it generated a wildfire of discussion. I think I can speak for everyone in attendance that this book engaged and challenged each of us on levels that will forever change the way we lead. This book covers everything from the importance of networking, casting vision, coping with difficult people, the art of delegation, surviving a visible mistake, and so much more.
Whatever your leadership role, this book offers fresh insights and new tools to help you lead with confidence and power. God’s power!
This book is a must for your next leadership coaching, network, or even personal growth.
(I wrote this review simply out of my appreciation for everything I gained from this book. Thank You Dr. Calvin Miller for your God given insights.)
A couple days ago, I had the wonderful privilege to go and minister to some folks at a local nursing center. It was an amazing experience. It has been years since I had been involved in this kind of ministry. I met a man who was previously in ministry, and he shared with me about Jesus whom he called his faithful companion. He went on to tell me that even though he was in this nursing home he was still going to preach the Bible. He host weekly Bible studies in the dinning hall, and does what he can to pray over the sick and hurting. I was amazed at this man’s heart for God. It inspired and encouraged me. It also got me to thinking about many of God’s men and women who are so called “retired” sitting on the sidelines enjoying their lives while there are people all around them suffering. All I have to say about that is “God ain’t through with you yet!!” He has things in store for your life that you can’t even begin to imagine if you will just be faithful and serve. Don’t waste your life get out there and share the good news of Jesus.
No one says it better than John Piper. Hear what he has to say…
Officially one year ago today I was wrapping up my trip in Haiti. Looking back it was one of the greatest adventures of my life. On one hand I was able to help a northern village and preach in Port Au Prince, and on the other hand Haiti helped me reach that next level in my faith. I would not be where I am at today without Haiti and the wonderful people there.
While I was there, I experienced a couple days of real darkness. In earlier journal post I talked about some of the things that bothered me on my trip, but now I realize the darkness I experienced was Satan attacking me spiritually. He knew the outcome this trip would have on me, and he did everything he could to break me down mentally. Like any muscle sometimes the brain needs to be broke down in order to grow stronger. Overall I am mentally and spiritually healthier because of this trip.
On this anniversary I want to encourage everyone to get involved in Missions. Maybe you cannot go on a trip, but you can support one financially and with your prayers. Take action, and get involved. Even as I speak the country of Japan is in desperate need. Pray that God will open doors, and that this will be an opportunity for mission teams to go in and spread the good news. Pastor Shannon O’dell wrote an article on 7 Ways to Pray for Japan. Be sure to check it out.
Also, please pray for my brother in Christ Bill Moore and the AFDC team who are currently in Haiti. Haiti needs your help. Please consider supporting this endeavor by contacting the Aid For Developing Countries. www.AFDC-Haiti.org
Spring break is here and it is 30 something degrees outside. I thought the whole idea of Spring break was to get a break from winter. Anyways, I will have to make the best of this week. In spite of the freezing temperatures I am fired up about what God is going to do North of Kansas City in the community of Smithville in the Spring and Summer of 2011. Things are about to get hot!!
I want to first start off by thanking everyone who has worked so hard over the past few months at North Lake to get us where we are at today. We couldn’t have done it without you. God brought together people from all walks of life, and created a force to be reckoned with.
It is amazing how time flies. Seems like just yesterday my baby girl was born, and now she is a raging ball of energy. Within the last couple days we have been truly blessed by our daughter Trinity. She has begun to cuddle more, and she even made the sweetest sound on earth… she said, “momma.” The joy that simple word brings is amazing. I don’t have a whole lot of food for thought for you today, but I do want to challenge all parents out there to cherish every moment you have with your children.
Behold, children are a gift of the LORD. – Psalm 127:3 (NASB)