Thursday, February 12, 2009

Letters from Dad Coming

We will be offering Letters from Dad beginning on April 5. LFD teaches men how to express themselves through writing. It has healed some husband/wife relationships, improved the way dads relate to their children, and has revived many adult/parent relationships. It is a great program for men,

We will have a free BBQ Informational Dinner on March 9. Men will have a great meal and learn what LFD can do for them. Men will have an opportunity to register for the four-session study that evening and order the materials they will need for the study. It should be a great evening of being together and deciding to do something special for those we love the most.

Recently, there was a Baptist church in north Texas that had about 1,400 in worship attendance, but they had a terrible time getting men to turn out for anything. More than 240 men attended their dinner and about 120 registered to take the course. After LFD was completed, the men divided themselves into 6 groups and started a Men's Ministry!

If you are reading this and want some more information, type in and you will gain more information than I am writing in this space.

I'll keep you up to date as we progress in this new endeavor to help men.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Abundant Life University Has Begun

Abundant Life University got off to a great start last night as 101 people attended four courses that were offered during the Winter semester. We offered Fireproofing Your Marriage; A Bible Study on Romans 8:28; The Theology of Israel; and The Life of the Cross (an evangelism course).

Three out of the above four courses will run eight weeks and one will be a six-week course. All of them will conclude by March 29. On Sunday, April 5, we will offer Letters from Dad, which is four sessions offered three weeks apart. I'll be surprised if this course does not have a higher attendance than any courses we've offered during the last three semesters. It is a hands-on, practical study that produces results that can be seen immediately.

I was pleased with the 101 adults who chose to take part in the above discipleship emphases. Our Children's Ministry had 53 children in choir rehearsal and another 27 leaders, plus nursery care. That was excellent. Was it a good adult attendance? I think anytime you get 181 people together on a Sunday night it has to be good. That is a large group for us. Our Missions Conference will surpass that figure by quite a bit, but discipleship is new in our church. Maybe we are right where we should be at this juncture of our infancy. I would have thought 140 was a minimal number, but we are not at minimal yet.

Five years from now I hope that we have about 25-35% of our Sunday morning attendance involved on Sunday night. I hope that we will have many of our leaders in that group and Christians who desire to be true disciples of Jesus Christ. Our world is changing at break-neck speed. It is probably changing faster than it ever has in our life-time. The truth of the matter is that in five years folks will probably be meeting every night of the week in some capacity. It won't look anything like it does today. The bottom line is that we are turning believers into disciples!

Friday, February 6, 2009

ACSI Was Excellent

Just returned from Galveston where I attended the ACSI Teacher's Convention. There were about 2,000+ teachers and administrators in attendance. It was my first time to be around that many teachers and they were great!

Josh McDowell was the keynote speaker. He has been one of my contemporaries over the last 35 years, so it was great finally hearing him in person. He as actually been in ministry for 49 years--that is a long time. McDowell probably does more research than anyone I've listened to in my life. I think he has multiple studies for everything he says. He can keep 2,000 people spellbound for 90 minutes and you wonder where the time went.

I attended eight sessions over the day and one half. They were all good, but my favorite was on the subject of how to increase student comprehension. It was taught by a retired college professor who really knew what he was talking about. Now I just need to put it into practice.

I was surprised at what I saw in Galveston. I was surprised at the number of businesses that were open after Ike. I was also surprised to see that places like McDonalds and Whataburger had not opened. Maybe they are not planning on opening. I saw old homes torn off of their foundations in some areas. There were huge piles of materials from old buildings and sailboats sitting on sidewalks. It was all a shocking sight, but it shows that Galveston will come back,. even if it takes a long time.

Now I'll look forward to getting back in the classroom on Monday. I can see a bigger picture than I was aware of three days ago.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Full Speed Ahead

2009 is in full-swing in everything I am doing.

We are offering seven new courses in our Abundant Life University series. The semester will begin next Sunday night. So much for my free Sunday afternoon and evenings.

I completed a 3.5 hour web-based training for a new offering called Letters From Dad. If you are not familiar with it, I encourage you to go to their web site and check it out. It is a needed program for men. We will have our kick-off in late February and offer the first class during the first week of April.

We just completed a Discovery Day event last Sunday. It started off with breakfast before
Bible Study and we planned for 300. I don't know how many we had...probably 200-250. It doesn't sound like much to plan for, but it was more work than most people would think. The main goal was to give people a chance to visit for about 45 minutes and it was successful.

We ended up with the most people in Sunday school than I've seen during the 18 months I've been on staff and the worship service was also the largest, probably outside of Easter. We did a complete stage remodeling, so the look was completely different. It was beautiful. We did a final film clip in a series on the Sonic commercials, changed out announcement to the screens with voice-over, and many other changes. It was a great day!

School is in the second semester and going well. This week we attend a convention in Galveston, so it will be a short week in the classroom. I thank God for my students every day.

I'm busy, but I love it. It is a great challenge and wonderful opportunity to balance both jobs. I'm not sure that my life has ever been any fuller from Monday-Friday. Thank God I have Saturday and I guard it pretty religiously. Something has to be pretty important for me to give up that break time.

Well, today is Super Bowl Sunday. I'm no a huge NFL fan. College football is what I am wild about, but I'll probably watch the opening of the Super Bowl. Everybody goes wild about the expensive life will be no less full if I don't see even one. Many would never miss the halftime show, but I may switch to a movie, if I'm still watching at all.

I hope the month of February brings great blessings to you and yours.