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The Most Valuable Question You’ll Ever Ask

The Most Valuable Question You’ll Ever Ask

“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened. Or which one of you, if his son asks him for bread, will give him a stone? 10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a serpent? 11 If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!” (Matthew 7:7-11)

Some years ago, I began my journey with an amazing network marketing company. Now, regardless of what your opinion is about network marketing, it is a great industry that helps a lot of people but of course has its bad eggs and bad moments. Kind of like your family. Haha. The good, however, certainly outweighs the bad. But anyway, back to my post.

Up until this time in my life, most of my decisions and governing philosophy for life were based on WHAT I was doing or WHAT needed to be done, and HOW I was going to get it done. This consistently left me with mixed results and outcomes that rarely met my expectations so that even in my mid-twenties I was beginning to feel like I was spinning my wheels chasing an ever-elusive state of fulfillment.

Then I went to my first Saturday training with a company that I believed in and had vision for. There on that Saturday morning I was introduced to the life-changing concept of WHY, and I realized sitting in that seat that for most of my life I had be asking the wrong questions. Like a lot of people, I would ask “Who am I?” instead of “WHY am I?”. I would ask, “Where should I go?” instead of “WHY should I leave?”.  The list could go on and on, but suffice it to say that the power of that WHY question began a transformation in my life that DIRECTLY influenced where I am today.

As an outgrowth of that moment I began asking the WHY question about everything in my life. It helped me begin to understand my motives, my habits, my behaviors, my patterns of living, why I went through the cycles of life I was going through and why I was getting the results from my efforts that I was getting. When I began asking WHY, I started to realize that I was more responsible for the condition of my life than I had liked to think up until that point. It was always easier to find someone or something else to blame for my condition in life, until I started asking WHY. When I did, I realized that no matter the external circumstances, there was always SOME role I played in the equation. And the exciting part was realizing that since I’m a part of the equation that produces the results, then if I change, if I get better, then things around me would get better.

And they did.

But not overnight. It’s been, and will continue to be, and life-long journey toward understanding the WHYs in my life. But I wouldn’t change this sense of awareness of purpose for anything. And that ladies and gentlemen is the foundational premise for Church On Purpose. One of our primary goals for the culture of the church is to be able to create a community where it’s ok to ask WHY.

My prayer for you, is that with all the questions that you have in life, that today you will just start asking WHY. Why am I here? Why did that happen? Why am I the way I am? Why do I struggle with the things I struggle with? Why do I care so much? Why do I care so little? Why am I so mean? Why am I still at this job? Why am I afraid? Why am I worried? Why do I deserve to be respected and loved? Just begin to ask WHY.

When you do so, with a sincere and open heart, our Heavenly Father will begin to answer you, and help you begin to understand yourself and your place in His plan. Now it is important to understand, that just like in all of your other interactions, there will be some answers that you don’t necessarily like. Asking why you struggle with relationships may very well take you back to a place in your life, long forgotten, that He needs to heal for you to move forward. But appreciate the fact that any hurts or pains He uncovers, He is more than able to heal. And your life on the other side of that brokenness, is the life that you’ve been dreaming of.

Start today with one WHY, and allow that to take you down the rabbit hole of WHYs. And over time, watch how the fruit of your life begins to line up with the desires of your heart. Because like I learned at that network marketing Saturday training all those years ago, when the WHY is clear, the HOW is irrelevant.

“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and the one who seeks finds, and to the one who knocks it will be opened.”

Live each day, but especially today, on purpose!

Coach J

Live For Today, Not Yesterday

Live For Today, Not Yesterday

To another he said, “Follow me.” But he said, “Lord, let me first go and bury my father.” And Jesus said to him, “Leave the dead to bury their own dead. But as for you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God.” -Luke 9:59-60

For the Christmas holiday, my wife and I visited family back in Virginia. We stopped by the cemetery to visit the grave of a family member who had passed last year. When we got there, we had a little trouble locating her grave and the Holy Spirit asked me, “Why do you seek the living among the dead?”

Wow! This family member passed away with their Kingdom citizenship intact and is having a good ole time in the Kingdom of Heaven with the King. We shall see her again and we’ll all return to the new Earth someday, so why were we looking for her when she wasn’t here anymore? We were looking for her here on Earth while she is there in Heaven. For that moment, we were pursuing what was in the past and had lost focus on the present. Understand me properly; reflecting on the memories and lives of loved ones is a good thing. There is absolutely nothing wrong with this.

I began to think what it must be like to be the individual who oversees the cemetery. Day in and day out, this person is responsible for watching over the remains of people who have moved on from this life, some as recent as a few days ago and others decades ago. Keeping up the appearance of the graves, trimming the lawn, etc. All these activities were so that people could come and visit the remains of people who were no longer with them.

In this moment, the Holy Spirit was showing me what I want to share with you in this post. Let the dead situations of yesterday remain in yesterday. You go live for today!

In Luke 9:59-60, Jesus told a man to follow Him, but this man gave the excuse of having to bury his father first. Jesus replies, “Leave the dead to bury their own dead. But as for you, go and proclaim the Kingdom of God.” There are a couple reasons why this man wanted to bury His father first. He was likely the first-born son and it was his responsibility to bury his father, and he likely wanted to receive his promised inheritance that was to come now that his father was dead. Regardless of the motivation, one thing is clear: Jesus knew that this man’s purpose was more important than even burying his own father!

Ouch! But, how can the dead bury the dead? I believe Jesus is referring to the spiritually dead who would rather stay stuck in the past with the dead, rather than move forward and live. Dead men don’t speak. Dead women don’t proclaim good news, only living ones do. Dead folk don’t inherit the life and responsibility of being Kingdom citizens on Earth. Jesus saw who this man was to become and sternly encouraged Him to let the past be the past. Perhaps if he went to bury his father, he wouldn’t return to follow Jesus. Perhaps family and friends would pressure him to stay. Whatever the possible outcome, Jesus knew that today was the day for this man to truly live.

Too often, we spend entirely too much time and energy trying to be where God was and not where He is. Whether it is relationships that were meant to be temporary, jobs that were supposed to be seasonal, or past situations we had no control over in the first place, we spend unnecessary time and energy trying to make something dead come alive again. We rob our present and our future by investing in the past. We tend, dress, keep, and make our homes among the dead. We revisit our mistakes, shortcomings, and failures. We blow balloons for pity parties and wallow in the grief of yesterday. We long for the good old days and what ifs. We become keepers of cemeteries in our lives.

I encourage you to come out of the cemetery. Leave the dead situations of the past there. Leave your mistakes and failures in the grave, but take the lessons with you. Let what is dead, remain dead. Go live for today! Live in the Kingdom of God. Your best days are ahead of you, not behind you. Your purpose is fulfilled in the future, not in the past. Everything God desires to do through you, requires that you live!

The new year is right around the corner, but you don’t have to wait until then to live for today. Live for today, now!

 

Grace and Peace,

 

Professor Q

You’re moving where???

You’re moving where???

That’s right! We’re moving to Omaha, Nebraska!

Your reaction may be like that of some who’ve heard the news already. You’re thinking, “Omaha??? What’s in Omaha, Nebraska? Corn fields?” Trust me, there are plenty of things in Nebraska besides corn.

Why are we going out there? Short and sweet is because God told us to. Since 2013, I knew the Lord was leading me to work with church plants, but didn’t know in what capacity. The vision of Church on Purpose confirmed and gave the next step for me and Priscilla’s vision for community and family empowerment aligned with the direction of the church, so the response to God’s invitation was clearly going to be a yes.

CoP Alive

Who else is out there? My friend, business partner, and brother, Jonathan (Lead Pastor) and his wife Jene’ (Kingdom Kids Coordinator), along with their two children have been living there for a year; we consider them family. We also have our friend, Anthony, who is there finishing up doctoral studies. So this is essentially totally unfamiliar territory for us, but we’re not worried because God has already begun and will continue to provide new relationships to facilitate the vision He has given us.

quentinWhat are we going to be doing in Omaha? We’ll be starting a brand new church! We are super excited. I’ll be serving as the Discipleship Pastor and Priscilla will be the church’s Community Connections Coordinator. I’d honestly have to share more with you over the phone or in person because this post just would not do it justice, so check out the site and let’s talk!

When are we leaving? We are set to leave at the end of August, so if you’d like to get together with Priscilla and myself, shoot either of us a text, message, email, or call. We’d definitely love to see you before we leave.

How can you support?MovingBanner First, join us in prayer for safe travels and for success with the plant. Be sure to download a copy of our prayer calendar on the church site to learn how you can pray for us. Second, consider sending a gift to support our transition by clicking our picture. Donations are tax-deductible and you can specify that you want it to go toward our relocation by adding the note “Rogers Move” to your contribution. Third, thanks in advance for your support!

Prof. Q

How The Grinch Steals Your Christmas

How The Grinch Steals Your Christmas

Galatians 4:4-7

But when the time arrived that was set by God the Father, God sent his Son, born among us of a woman, born under the conditions of the law so that he might redeem those of us who have been kidnapped by the law. Thus we have been set free to experience our rightful heritage. You can tell for sure that you are now fully adopted as his own children because God sent the Spirit of his Son into our lives crying out, “Papa! Father!” Doesn’t that privilege of intimate conversation with God make it plain that you are not a slave, but a child? And if you are a child, you’re also an heir, with complete access to the inheritance.

We are all familiar with the Dr. Seuss holiday classic about the bitter green monster living in the hills above Hooville. There, isolated on the mountaintop, with no company except that of his dog, the Grinch devises the perfect plan to steal Christmas from those annoyingly happy Hoos living below. It is his belief that without the trees, and presents, and feasts that the Hoos will be too depressed to celebrate one of the best holidays of the year.

In an amazing turn of events, with all of their decorations, presents and food in a huge sack on the back of his sleigh, the Hooville Hoos wake up, make a beeline for the town square, grab hands and in a marvelous demonstration of the foundation of Christmas, they lift their voices in song together in celebration of their relationship. Listen to some of the words they sang:

Fahoo Fores Dahoo Dores
Welcome Christmas Come this way
Fahoo Fores Dahoo Dores
Welcome Christmas, Christmas day
Welcome, welcome fahoo ramus
Welcome, welcome dahoo damus
Christmas day is in our grasp,
So long as we have hands to clasp
Fahoo fores dahoo dores
Welcome Christmas bring your cheer
Fahoo fores dahoo dores
Welcome all Whos far and near
Welcome Christmas fahoo ramus
Welcome Christmas dahoo damus
Christmas time will always be,
just so long as we have we
Fahoo Fores Dahoo Dores
Welcome Christmas bring your light
Fahoo Fores Dahoo Dores
Welcome in the cold dark night
Welcome Christmas fahoo ramus
Welcome Christmas dahoo damus
Welcome Christmas while we stand,
Heart to Heart and Hand in Hand
Fahoo Fores Dahoo Dores
Welcome Christmas,
Christmas Day!

Touched by their meaningful display, the Grinch decides to return what he has stolen, and in perfect Who fashion, is welcomed and embraced with the same love the Whos shared among themselves.

how-the-grinch-stole-christmas-6

The truth about the Grinch Who Stole Christmas, is that the Grinch had it wrong from the very beginning. He thought to steal Christmas he had to take away the things, the decorations, the presents, and the food. When in fact, all the Grinch had to do to steal Christmas again was the very same thing he had been doing every year up until then. For sitting atop that mountain in his judgemental isolation far from the warmth and love of Whoville, the Grinch had been stealing Christmas for years. What he didn’t realize is that he had been stealing it from himself. And if we’re not on our guard, our flesh will turn us into Grinches who have Christmas stolen from us because we wont come down off our mountain.

In fact, the Christmas story at its core is about the restoration of relationships and the great lengths that God is willing to go, for us to have a chance at enjoying Christmas every day. Galatians 4:4-7 highlights the intentionality of God’s plan to fix the relationship that was broken with him. He didn’t haphazardly wait for a random moment, he didn’t wait for us to come to him. From the moment our relationship with him was broken, He had a specific time designated in the timeline of the world when he would implement an intentional plan that, highlighted by his coming to us, would give us the opportunity to embrace reconciliation.

But like the Grinch, we all have that moment when we have to choose to remain angry and bitter, or decide to allow love to overwhelm our hearts. True, it often times seems so hard to do. Especially when we review the laundry list of transgressions that has produced the feelings of frustration that dominate our thoughts. But when we allow love to fill us, like the Grinch, we access supernatural strength that allows us to do what seems impossible. We are able to lift loads that previously dragged and even crushed us. And more importantly, we are able to give the greatest gift of all to others, our presence through a loving relationship.

fanart

Christmas is our designated time of the year to emphasize the incarnation, the coming of God in the flesh of a baby named Jesus through the womb of a virgin named Mary. But the real miracle of Christmas wasn’t the miraculous birth, the perfect timing, or even the heavenly announcement. The real miracle of Christmas is that God knew the greatest gift that He could give, was His presence with us. And like the Father, Jesus gives us the gift of His Spirit to be with us in our hearts. And that Holy Spirit serves as a constant reminder to us of an inheritance that is ours. As sons of God, we get to have Christmas every day, because Christmas isn’t about the decorations, the presents, or the feast. Christmas is about the reconciliation and restoration of relationships. And in the Kingdom of Heaven, just like in Whoville, that’s the only way to live.

The Grinch Stole the joy, the love, the peace, the unimaginable and uncomparable feeling of Christmas from himself for years because he chose to be bitter and resentful instead of reconciling his relationship with the Whos. True, we aren’t clear whether they ever made any attempts to initiate reconciliation, but I’m so glad that God didn’t wait on any of us to make the first step. The culture of the Kingdom of Heaven is one of healthy, reconciled, restored, and loving relationships built upon the same self-sacrificing love that was extended to us when we didn’t deserve it, and the same mistake erasing grace that is extended to us every day. As citizens of God’s Kingdom, let’s learn how to live Christmas every day.

The Grinch would have enjoyed many more Christmases if he’d simply had the words Paul wrote in his letter to the Colossians beginning at chapter 3 verse 12: Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful. Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

Moving Day…

Moving Day…

Monday, August 10, 2015 will forever be a LIFE moment.

A “LIFE moment” is an event that you remember vividly for the rest of your days. Today was a LIFE moment. Today was moving day.

A little less than a year ago, I journeyed to Omaha, Nebraska for the first time in my life. Today, I packed up my family and left my home, my friends, my church family, everything familiar to me. I left my comfort zone in search of God. I already know Jesus, have a relationship with the Father because of him, and dialogue with Holy Spirit regularly (how do you think we ended up in Omaha?? lol) But one thing that has been clear to me since making the commitment to obedience over comfort, is that God has been waiting for me BEYOND my comfort zone.

My comfort zone was that place where I knew all the short cuts to get from point “A” to point “B”. It’s that place where I could drive most of my usual places on autopilot. It was a place where I had an established reputation that did most of the heavy lifting for me.

What I didn’t realize is that my comfort zone had become my CRIPPLING ZONE. The familiarity, the routine, the established customs and habits were leading me down the path to mediocrity because my life was on autopilot. Until God pushed me out of my comfort zone.

WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAY out of my comfort zone.

When the call to plant Church On Purpose in Omaha, Nebraska became clear to me, one of the things that I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt was that I was going to get to see more of God than I ever had.

And I have!

Obedience to a plan that hasn’t always made sense to me has opened the door for God to do miraculous things. This last year has been a constant reminder of how God works and how He desires to work through Church On Purpose and the Body of Christ as a whole. Over the last year, there has not been a single week that has gone by where God didn’t make himself known, and EVERY time he did it, it was through one of his children.

This last 12 months has exposed so many of the people around me as genuine, loving, humble, Holy Spirit-led believers as God has moved through them to bless my family with love, encouragement, support, prayer, and resources for the work. The outpouring of love and support has been God’s tangible demonstration to us that we are on the right track, and that He is faithful to provide for the call.

We haven’t always had more than enough. As a matter of fact, there have been a number of times where it seemed like we didn’t have enough. The testimony of being able to pay every bill on time isn’t our testimony. Our testimony is that when it got cut off, we found out whether it was a necessity, and the necessities always got cut back on. But those things that weren’t necessities found themselves being cut OUT. Our testimony is one of education and equipping. We have had many difficult, but much needed lessons over the last year.

And it has been a looooooooooong 12 months. It’s crazy to think back and realize that nearly EVERYTHING has changed. What’s weird about all of this though, is that I’m actually more “comfortable” in all of the newness than I was in all of the familiar.

Even in the familiarity of the familiar, there was always an uneasiness inside of me poking and prodding me toward MORE.

But there’s a wonderful thing that happens inside of you, in your heart and your mind when you actually TRUST God. I don’t mean just say it, but I mean ACTUALLY TRUST HIM. In the face of challenging, confusing, and even ridiculous circumstances, He still provides His peace. Through all of the good byes and moments of reflection, He still provides His peace. The Bible puts it perfectly because it truly is a peace that passes all understanding. It isn’t logical. It rarely makes sense. But it’s real.

I don’t know how it works. I don’t how long it last. But I DO know, that the same peace I’ve experienced in these last 12 months, is available to you too. It’s waiting for you in your obedience to His call. And in case you were wondering, yes God is still calling people from the land of their father and mother to a land they never knew, to be salt and light, and to experience the limitless power of our God, that we can only access beyond the borders of our comfort zone.

God changed my borders from Norfolk to Omaha, but YOU have to find out what lines you need to cross. Maybe your borders will expand to the neighbor next door, or maybe even the next cubicle over. That’s between you and Him. But one thing is for certain, there’s a reason his final charge to us all started with the word “GO”.

Is this moving day for you too? It CAN be.

Where is He calling you? His peace is waiting in your obedience.

Remember, everything is created with purpose but only you have your vision.

~ Coach J

GO AND BE FREE

GO AND BE FREE

When reminiscing through old photo albums of special occasions and major milestones, you won’t find very many pictures of me compared to others, although, I was more than likely present. This phenomena is not an oversight because, more often than not, my absence was by design. That is because I choose to leave my mark in a different way. My name is Anthony Starke and I am a silent supporter.

Every special moment requires someone working behind the scenes making sure that your moment is a memorable one. And, while some love the spotlight, in the wings is where I work my magic. But, making my indelible marks on the minute details of other people’s experiences has a major pitfall, one that you may not expect but know all too well if you are like me. You become subjugated to a supporting cast role in your own autobiography. You’re dependable, loyal and ask for little in return and, over time other people’s affection for you becomes hinged upon what you have done or can do for them.

In the best seller, The Alchemist, author Paulo Coelho writes: “To realize one’s destiny is a person’s only obligation.” Over the past year I’ve been learning just that. When I was presented with an amazing opportunity to fulfill a lifelong dream I quickly found myself faced with adversity from the most unlikely places. My amazing opportunity became a minor inconvenience for many of those whom I had faithfully supported. Their true feelings were most evident in their response to the news – it wasn’t jealousy, envy or hate but an unfamiliar uneasiness and all-telling hesitation. This is not to say that these individuals were malicious or that they were consciously aware of their lack of support, rather they struggled with the thought of my liberation.
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cbecKv2xR14&w=560&h=315]
Maya Angelou tells the story of leaving her mother’s home as a seventeen-year-old single mother. During her recollection, she states that her mother liberated her to life, “she released me, she freed me to say I may have something in me that will be of value and maybe not just to me.” Love liberates. Authentic love requires removing oneself from the equation in order to support that which is best for the object of one’s love and affection.

I harbor no hard-feelings or ill-will for those who struggled with my liberation because I know that it means they care for me in their own way. But this experience has taught me that I must take center stage in my own life’s story. And, if I intend to live a life of purpose, I cannot live my life, build my identity and make my decisions based on how it inconveniences others. My life is my obligation, of which I am accountable.

~ The Riddler

When nobody else sees it

When nobody else sees it

Vision is an interesting thing.

With vision, you can change the world. Without it, the world is sure to change you.

I’ve had the idea floating around in my head of starting a church since I was in high school. As a senior, a few friends and I would gather together for Bible study, worship and fellowship each Tuesday. We called ourselves Young Christian Fellowship. It was around that time that I started thinking about the purpose of “church” and its components.

Fast forward to Christmas morning of 2011. It was around 2:30 in the morning I woke up out of my sleep, sat up in the bed, and saw three little words in my mind that would change my life: CHURCH ON PURPOSE.

That’s all I would be able to see for another 3 years until venturing to Omaha, Nebraska. It was there that those three little words would grow into a church, and a church into a mission, a mission into a calling, and a calling into a reason for existing.

All along the way I’ve constantly reminded myself of two things:

  1. If it’s from God, let Him lead you through it
  2. Since it’s from God, everybody won’t see it

The first one of course has been the daily inward battle. When God shows you something special, He never gives you the full picture all at once. So it can be tempting to take the little bit of that picture that you CAN see and try to color in all of the other spots with what YOU think should go there. If there’s anything this journey has taught me is that THE PICTURE LOOKS SO MUCH BETTER WHEN YOU JUST WAIT AND LET HIM FILL IT IN. I will talk more about this in a future blog about this journey with Directional Revelation.

The second nugget though, has been both the inward AND outward battle. We live in a world that will celebrate one individual for going against the grain in one way, while trying to destroy an individual that goes against the grain in another way. It can be challenging doing something out of the norm, not because you want everyone to see it and support, but because you want SOMEONE, SOMEWHERE to see it and support. The scariest parts of the journey are always when you’re walking alone.

Returning from Omaha back in August having committed to following God’s directions to plant Church On Purpose, the prevailing thought in my mind was “What if nobody sees it?”. In those times when I would begin to think about how others would respond to the vision, a song we used to sing all the time as a little boy at my home church Union Branch Baptist Church in Chesterfield, Virginia would pop up out of nowhere. It would get stuck in my head and I would find myself humming those words for hours “I will go, if I have to go by myself”.
[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ETgh-sqJ8QI]
The comfort those words would provide was always unexpected and appreciated. Those words echo a deep seeded faith in God’s superior commitment to me as I remain committed to the vision He’s given me. As those words would minister to me, story after story from the Bible would flash in my mind of all the everyday people that God used for extraordinary things. I would not only find comfort, but I would find fuel to press forward with the confidence of having my heavenly father leading the way.

Over the last 9 months, I’ve shared the vision of Church On Purpose with countless people. Some have seen it, most have not. Some have supported it, most have not. And you know what, I’m ok with that now. What I’ve learned is to never EXPECT others to see it because God has his own plan for them and if their purpose doesn’t align with what we’re doing, then I don’t want them TRYING TO MAKE IT WORK. We will be fine doing what we were created to do, and pray they will be fine doing what God created THEM to do. Everyone wont be a part of what Church On Purpose is going to do, and God is totally awesome for that.

So to those of you that have supported along the way, THANK YOU! It means so much to know that you understand the work God is preparing us for enough to pray for us, donate to the work, and offer encouragement along the way. Actions always speak louder than words, and may God bless you abundantly for your actions of support.

To those who don’t see it, won’t see it, or can’t see it. Thank you too! Your questions have caused me to consistently evaluate and re-evaluate my position of faith along this journey and your words of doubt have deepened my resolve to pursue God even more passionately in hopes of being a testimony to you that GOD IS STILL WORKING MIRACLES, STILL CALLING PEOPLE OUT OF THE LAND OF THEIR FOREFATHERS TO PLACES HE WILL GIVE THEM, STILL GIVING VICTORY BEFORE THE BATTLE BEGINS, AND STILL USING ORDINARY EVERYDAY PEOPLE TO EXPAND THE KINGDOM!

If you’re reading this because there’s something inside of you that is calling you to more than what you’re living, then let me leave you with is:

God sees all, so who cares if nobody else sees it
God is the provider of all things, so who cares if you don’t have what you THINK you need
God is the author or your vision, so who cares if YOU don’t see every last detail
and last…
The only way to see more of God than you’ve seen, is to do something you’ve never done.

Don’t depend on what you see, or what others see. Afterall, “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1 (KJV)

Remember, EVERYTHING has purpose, including you!

~Coach J

A Land I Never Knew…

“By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to a place that he was to receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he was going.” -Hebrews 11:8 ESV

Over the past week or so, this Scripture at the forefront of my meditation. Abraham’s faith never ceases to take my breath away. Imagine growing up in your hometown and living there for over 70 years. You have several generations of family there, you made your livelihood there, everything you own and everything that you have become is tied to that place. Then one day, God comes and gives a tremendous vision that not only scares you, but excites you. Then, the punchline comes: you must leave your homeland to go a land you NEVER KNEW. He doesn’t give you the location, doesn’t even give you a road map. He just says, “Get up, grab your family and start walking in this direction. Trust me, the place I’m taking you is crucial to fulfilling that vision I just showed you.” Say whaaaaaat?!!?! Regardless of what Abraham may have felt or thought, he obediently trusted God and went.

Here I sit typing, having a similar experience. Never before had I been to, let alone ever considered moving to Omaha, Nebraska for any reason. Having lived in pretty much one place my entire life, making a move of this magnitude would be very daunting given any other circumstance. Yet in the face of all the challenges that may lie before us, I know and trust that where God is leading me is crucial to the next phase of life. Thus, when my wife and I considered Omaha, I simply said, yes. With no idea on where we will live, what we will exactly do when we get out there, I still was assured (and still am) confident that even though we will be moving to a land we never knew to take on the charge God has laid before us, everything will work out.

I’ve learned that faith simply is trust in God with or without a plan…

~Professor Q