Friday, November 18, 2011

|| GOD ||

In his new book,Gospel Wakefulness, Jared Wilson talks about how all of life is relevant for mission. From drinking coffee to changing diapers, from cutting the grass to washing dishes — all of life can be lived to the glory of God by those who have been awakened to the gospel of our exhaustively sovereign Savior.
He writes,
One of the attendant aims of missional evangelicalism is to challenge the compartmentalizing of the Christian faith that we see within the Western church. We are fantastic at itemizing our schedules, and even if we don't assign God a very large bracket, we are constantly remorseful that we "haven't made much time for him." While such compartmentalizing — as if "time with God" can or should be hermetically sealed off from everything else — is a natural symptom of our culture and environment, it also reflects a bad theology.
The truth is, the day does not belong to us. It is not our day to do with as we please. We serve a sovereign God. He created the end from the beginning, knows our future exhaustively, and is firmly in control. He made our days and they belong to him. As such, isn't it a bit arrogant to begin with the idea that each day is ours and then worry about fitting God in? Instead, we should work at the humble awe of knowing all of our moments, every millisecond, waking or sleeping, are perfectly accounted for within the economy of heaven.
Let us stake the flag of Christ's kingdom into the soil of our first waking moment. Drink your coffee when you get up, of course, but drink it to the glory of God. Then carry on in this way all day, no matter the task, be it menial or notable, so that each day may be a living prayer that God's will will be done on earth as it is in heaven. This is what it means to live a gospel-saturated life: it means being so conscious of the greatness of the gospel that changing diapers or cutting the grass is as much an act of worship as singing a praise chorus in a church service….
Jesus Christ is Lord over my heart, and he is Lord over my hands, and he is Lord over what I do with these hands, and he is Lord over what I say in my heart while I'm doing it. In submitting to the lordship of Christ, then, I do not treat washing dishes as wasting time I could be spending doing something "meaningful," but rather as a service to those who eat in my home, as a service to those who would have to wash the dishes if I did not, and as an offering of thanksgiving to God that I have food to eat, dishes to eat it on, and running water inside my home to clean with.
To paraphrase C. S. Lewis, there is not a square inch of our lives that is not claimed by God and counterclaimed by ourselves. If we believe God is sovereign, however, we will see all of life as mission and be led to submit the square inches we otherwise hold so tightly to the Maker of inches and hands.
Gospel Wakefulness, (Wheaton: Crossway, 2011), 90–92, paragraphing added.
Originally posted on

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Road ID

Here at home I run alongside some very busy streets. Since I do not like to carry my wallet with me while running or biking I found this.

To share some Christmas blessing they have put out some coupons out for everyone to use. Enjoy here.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Thought of the Day!

The most amazing thing about this picture is not just the lives touched that this picture represents but the unity of the team. God melded this team together on this trip like non other. I have never been apart of a missions trip team that was so focused on one goal and one mission. The story behind this picture is one of that teamwork. Several of us were talking about how cool it would be to get a picture like this. So armed with that thought we did it. But it was a team effort. My camera, Mrs Query taking the picture, I made a few initial edits to the picture, Aaress posted the quote, Melanie saw the quote and picture and combined the two. And now was have a memorial just like the people of Israel when God would command them to set up memorials. Why? So that when their children saw it they would ask, "What did GOD do here?" We are the BODY!

First of 10 post about the trip:

Monday, October 3, 2011

Moment of reflection!

Focus? What is it? Where is yours?

"Life is far too short not to realize that it's long enough to make a difference in someone else's life."

So get out and tell them about GOD'S LOVE!

Friday, August 5, 2011

|| Personal || Tornado ||

Living in Oklahoma you come to accept tornadoes as a way of life. The term "Tornado Alley" and constant warnings and watches come to be a way of life April through June. I remember the times of practicing where we would go if there was a tornado and preparing. Praise God that we never had to actually take cover.

In the past two years though tornado's have begun to strike closer to home. 2 years ago a small f-1 passed 2 blocks from our house in the middle of the night. This year hundreds of twisters tore through a small valley in Alabama wiping out an entire valley including the family of an ALERT graduate. Less than two months later Joplin was leveled by another deadly tornado.

As I think of the power that each storm brings I think back to Elijah in I Kings 19. He heard the wind, the rain, felt the earthquake, smelt the fire, and was surrounded by so many displays of God's power. While he could see the effects of God's power God was not "in" those events. His voice was in the still small quiet. What a reminder to look at my own life. Am I listening to His voice in the quiet? What about in the busy activity?

My friend Andrew is a phenomenal videographer who can tell stories in an amazing way. You can check out his work HERE. Also please take a moment to visit the following link and vote for his video of the Alabama tornado's. Contest Link He deployed down there while working with ALERT. During that time he shot the following film. Contest Link and Video of Alabama destruction His video was selected as a finalist for a competition for a company that designs some of the equipment he uses.

 After the Joplin tornado our ALERT Cadet unit along with a contingent from a Texas unit deployed to Joplin to clear houses and yards of debris. We also had the opportunity to serve the church we were working for. You can view pictures of that deployment HERE.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

No greater L.O.V.E......

"Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends. - John 15:13
4 years ago today, yet the memories of a brother who gave his all are still fresh on my mind. Because of you, Jaron, we enjoy freedom!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

In Honor of Flag Day

In honor of Flag Day. The Stars and Strips still proudly flying over a destroyed home in Joplin, Mo

THESE are the times that try men's souls. The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of their country; but he that stands it now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict, the more glorious the triumph. What we obtain too cheap, we esteem too lightly: it is dearness only that gives every thing its value. Heaven knows how to put a proper price upon its goods; and it would be strange indeed if so celestial an article as FREEDOM should not be highly rated.  -Thomas Paine, 1776-
Courtesy of Wiki.

To read the entire letter click on the image above.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Taking Chance

In This evening our family watched the movie, "Taking Chance". Taking Chance chronicles the trip home of Lance Corporal Chance Phelps, from the Dover crematory to his rural Wyoming burial in his families hometown as seen through the eyes of his escort, Lt. Col. Michael Strobl. Strobl chronicles the event and emotions surrounding it in his journal. Along the way as escort he was overwhelmed by the outpouring of gratefulness for the selfless sacrifice of a young man they had never even met.

As I watched I was taken back to 2006 and 2007. It was in 2006 that Marine Corporal Jared Shoemaker was killed in Iraq. Boldly protecting the freedoms that we hold so dear. Jared is the son of my dad's cousin. While I did not know Jared well I do know that no matter where he was protecting our freedoms he was also sharing with others about the freedom they could have in Christ. During his funeral our family witnessed first hand the gratefulness and honor of so many people who never knew Jared. Jared was also a Tulsa Police officer who protected our freedoms here at home as well as across the ocean.

Tulsa World account of Jared's Funeral. HERE

In 2007 I was down at the International ALERT Academy working in the Cadet office on a 9 month internship. On August 5th I received a phone call from my family telling me that Corporal Jaron Holiday had been killed in action in Iraq. Jaron had been an active part of our local ALERT Cadet unit up until the day he left for basic training. Jaron was a blast to be around and one the older guys that we all looked up to with admiration. Jaron had a love and passion for the Lord that was only seconded by his love for his family and music. Every where Jaron went his smile was always there to proclaim God's love.

Tomorrow my brother John will be graduating from high school with CHEF. The same group the rest of my family and Jaron have graduated with. At the service tomorrow Mrs. Holiday will present a music scholarship to one of the graduates. A continuing testimony to the life and service of an incredible young man who served God with all his passion.

Taking Chance - If you have not seen this movie before I would encourage you to have your parents preview it before hand. There is some inappropriate language and a few moments of inappropriate dress. The story is eye opening to the process of internment and the dignity and honor bestowed on them. It however, leaves out nearly all mention of the Lord and his true comfort and salvation.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Praise God for someone with a little Godly guts!

To view the original file follow this link or click on the picture.

Lew Sterrett and Sermon on the Mount in TULSA! (kinda :-) )

Lew Sterrett and Sermon on the mount will be here in Claremore at the expo center Saturday April 9th! Come and see the Jr. Rodeo at 10am or just browse the hundreds of vendors who will be there. Lew will be doing his presentation from 2-4pm. The event is free and open to the public.

Check out Lew's great resources and event schedule here:

Photog ALERT!

For all my photog friends out there... If you are not able to purchase Adobe products with the educational discount then here is a great opportunity to pick up the full version of Lightroom 3 for $100 OFF!

Recommended Reading/Listening

I am currently working through a study of Chip Ingram's book, Good To Great in God's Eyes. It is an exciting study that God is using powerfully. I would encourage you all to pick up a copy from amazon or your favorite book seller. In the mean time there are nearly 10 GIGABYTES of his books on mp3 as well as many other well known authors available for FREE download through APRIL 4th... If you have a moment I would encourage you to check out and grab a few FREE books on mp3 to listen to as you workout, drive, or as a family.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

ALERT Cadet LTC Camp

 To all my ALERT Cadet brothers....

I would encourage you all to check out the 2011 ALERT Cadet LTC camp.... It is going to be a great time of spiritual training and growth coupled with exciting activities, life changing skills, and leadership lessons. I will be there along with many of the great Cadet's and ALERT reserves. I eagerly anticipate what God will do in and through this camp! If you can come I would encourage you to register at And be sure to tell all your fellow ALERT Cadet brothers about the camp!


Since 1998 my family has been privileged to be involved with ALERT Cadets. Our unit here in Tulsa is an amazing group of guys that have all grown to be family. Our unit has become very involved with many different ways in the local community. On Vimeo I have posted two recent Time lapse videos of a few of our activities... 

Below is a short essay I wrote for the ALERT Cadet 10th anniversary essay contest.

What Cadets Means to Me

ALERT Cadets will always have a special place in my heart. Why? First, it is the tool that helped my father win my heart. And secondly, it allows me to mentor and be an example to other young men.

We entered ALERT Cadets in 1998. At the time my relationship with my father and three other brothers was “average”. We were missing the excellence of heart to heart relationships. Through spending focused time together in meetings, working on handbooks, serving others, campouts, and other various activities, we have grown close in our relationships with one another and with our God. 

In our unit we each have those exceptional individuals we look up to as mentors and guides and those who look up to us. It is a challenging responsibility, but that is what is so distinctive about Alert Cadets. The unit is the body of Christ in miniature, which promotes our growing into the mature men God has called us to be. Opportunities were provided for my father to come alongside me, and fathers to encourage one another, in the shared goal of turning their hearts toward their sons.

When I think of Alert Cadets, I am thankful for God strengthening my relationship with my father and each of my brothers. It means the world to me that my father, brothers and I can now share our hearts with one another.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Good News Club...

It has been sometime since I talked about our Good News Club. This year it started out huge... Well over 60 kids. What a joy and encouragement it was to have so many eager listener's ready to learn the truths of God's word. As the school year has gone on the number of kids has dropped. Even through that God is at work in these kids lives. We have had several kids come to know the Lord this year. What a joy it is to see them realize their sin and need for a perfect Savior. This school year is winding down and with the end of school for summer comes the end of club. I pray that these little ones will stay strong in their faith in God and read their Bibles faithfully. 

As a testimony to how God is working here are a few notes two of the kids wrote for class projects. Word for word as they wrote them enjoy!

"On Wednesday, last week I learned at church that kids can minister. I never knew it but I have helped minister. Well, kinda, I helped with the songs. Remember when Joe (name changed) helped by dressing up like Joseph. Oh, and I learned that kids can minster to older people. so see kids CAN help even when they are really young!" 
"The Holy bible is a change in people. It makes them different. On the front of my Bible it says, 'build your life on it.' What that means is make your life different then it is inspiring. If you pray you can change your life. You can start life over again."

This week we were sharing the story of Joseph and his brothers as well as giving a report from our recent trip to El Salvador. We were sharing about the changed lives of the people in El Salvador who came to Christ and began a new life as a Christian.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Bob Schultz

If you have ever read any of Bob Schultz's three previous books, Boyhood and Beyond, Created for Work, or Practical Happiness, then you will not want to miss this opportunity to read his final book. 

While working at ALERT Cadet headquarters many years ago I had the opportunity to work alongside one of his daughters. During one of his ...visits to ALERT I was able to meet him and the rest of the family. Mr. Schultz's is a great man of integrity who lives each day of his life for Christ with true humility. During one such visit I was able to preview Practical Happiness for him before it went to press. What joy and honor it was to glean from his Godly wisdom. I pray you are blessed as much by his books as I have been. 
If you went to an ALERT Cadet camp you probably recognize Created for Work and Boyhood and Beyond as two of the books we worked through during Father Son camps in the 2006-2008 era. 

Be sure to check out Everyday Battles on Facebook!

If you have never read any of his books I would encourage you to make time for them!
To get your copy email:

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

El Salvador Day 10

Today was the day most of the team who had been here before had been looking forward to with great anticipation. Today we were headed to Zacatacaluka. We stopped for an early lunch at Biggest. Biggest is like a hybrid Burger King/Charlie’s Chicken/ McDonald’s all rolled into one. 

Today Michael was really sick. We were all praying very hard for him. We do not know what he had. However, it was very serious. It would take him nearly a week after returning home to fully recover.

Upon arriving at the orphanage we were allowed only to stay in the courtyard. The Nun’s said all the other kids were busy and that we would only be able to see the seven kids they sent out to us. Backing up to yesterday, the purpose for Mike and Mr. Duggar’s visit was to make sure things were still good with our planned arrival. In the past the nun’s had tried everything to block us from visiting and make it as hard as possible for us to be with the children. Even though we had in hand letters from the governor asking us to visit on her behalf we still ran into problems. Several of the children have come to know the Lord through SOS’s work in the orphanage. Therefore, the nun’s hated our visits because it did so much to reverse their brainwashing. In the week leading up to our visit Mike and Alex had been calling repeatedly trying to confirm our visit. Yesterday the head nun was not there but her assistant and the others there assured us everything was prepared for us to come and spend time with all the kids.  While Mike and Josh talked things through with the Nun’s the rest of us enjoyed sharing Christ love with the few kids we were allowed to see. At one point in time they told us that the other kids were not here but you could hear them in the back of the compound. 

You know when you have made an impact in others when they come flying out the door screaming in delight upon hearing that you have come back. This was the response the team received from the kids at the orphanage. As we waited for the nun’s to settle down Mike ran to the store for a few supplies we needed. We all played soccer, painted fingernails, played basketball, enjoyed the swings, or jumped rope. It was touching to be able to bring one day of delight to these kids. Some sat around reading the Bible with various team members or just talking and exploring some of the new gifts we brought for them.
During this time Spencer and I took over 200 pictures of the existing playground and yard area. His church in cooperation with the governor is going to redo the playground. We carefully documented the exposed bare wires on the light poles, open sewer manholes, swing chain repaired with tiny wire, and broken glass everywhere. I can’t wait to see that the play area looks like when they are finished with it this coming summer. I know that it will be much safer and useable for these under privileged kids.
About 4 o’clock the head nun finally said you have 10 minutes to see the rest of the kids. But they can’t come out here you have to go back there. As they led us through the compound you saw several rows of block buildings. Block buildings with small windows covered with metal bars. From inside you could hear children. She led us into one and through several metal gates. It gave you the impression you were at a prison rather than an orphanage for children who have been taken in off the streets. We came into a common courtyard type room. Here the nun went down the hall unlocking cells/bedrooms to allow the kids out to meet us. As soon as she would open a door the kids would pour out. We later found out the kids are only allowed out of their cells to go to school. We spent the few precious minutes handing out gifts and gospel of John’s. What treasures these simple gifts were to each child. 

At exactly 9:32 after we were given ten minutes the head nun ordered us out. We made sure to thank her for the time she allowed and shared what blessing it had been. 

 About half of the kids in the orphanage are HIV positive. Two years ago when SOS had come they would not allow them to interact with the HIV children because they feared we would exploit them. This year it was some of the HIV kids that we were allowed to spend the most time with. What a change.
We handed out the rest of the gifts and began saying our goodbyes. It was amongst many tears that we loaded our bags and headed home. What a ride it was. We had rented two trucks for the day today. I think we must have set a record for fastest trip to and from the orphanage. 

Upon arriving back we hastily cleaned up and prepared for the church’s 10th anniversary celebration that evening. The local leaders of SOS had planned this entire celebration on their own. It was a great testimony to me of the leader Mike was in raising each of them up and empowering them to be leaders. The celebration began around 5:30 with food and fellowship. Through some mis-communication some of us ate some local food that was not “safe” for us gringos. It was some of the most amazing marinated cucumber that I have ever had though. Needless to say we all survived. At 6:30 the formal service began. Throughout the time some of the pastors who had been in La Esperanza for the following three days at the pastors conference would share, then we would sing, pray, preach, and the cycle would begin all over again. At one point they called all of the American team up to “introduce us”. And then asked us to sing. Umm.. We had not heard a thing about this or been warned. J It was all good though. We sang one of the songs from sharing in the villages. And then Antonio and Alex asked us to sing a few more songs. We ended up singing 4 of the 5 songs we would sing in the various villages. 

In all there were at least 400 people packed in for the celebration. It was a joy to sing passionately with these believers and watch the passion and zeal of the preaching and sharing. These people’s hearts are on fire for the Lord. The evening (morning) finally wrapped up at 12:20 being the final amen. About half of the team who were still recovering from sickness or just coming down with the sickness had crashed in mass on a few mattresses on the floor in one of the rooms.

It was nearly 1am before most people had left and we begun cleaning up the various rooms so we could pull out our mattress. It was nearly 2am when I turned off the lights in the guys room and flopped onto my bed.
Words fail to express the emotions of the day. The highs of seeing the kids smiles, worshiping at the celebration, and many other exciting moments. All these contrasted with the lows of running into walls with the nun’s and not being able to see the kids, or the hopeless expressions on so many people’s faces in town as they seek for peace and joy among the demons.