Promise Keepers

Notes From the Field – Part 1d

Session 4 – Tom Davis

  • Children’s HopeChest
  • Author of Fields of the Fatherless and Red Letters
  • James 1:27
    • 27Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.
      • God has a heart and a passion for the poor
      • There are over 200 verses about the “fatherless”
      • If this is such a predominant characteristic in God, than why do we as little Christ’s struggle with such awkwardness in the presence of the fatherless
  • Those in the church spend a lot of time talking about what we are saved from, but what about doing what we are saved for
  • We see our lives through various lenses
    • These are our experiences
    • What are God’s lenses?
      • Does God like what he sees when he “wakes” up every morning?
  • For instance, there is only a five dollar difference between life and death when it comes to maleria
  • Amos Chapter Five talks about what has gone wrong in the world
    • Amos 5:21-24
      • 21 “I hate, I despise your feasts, and I take no delight in your solemn assemblies. 22 Even though you offer me your burnt offerings and grain offerings, I will not accept them; and the peace offerings of your fattened animals, I will not look upon them. 23Take away from me the noise of your songs; to the melody of your harps I will not listen. 24But let justice roll down  like waters, and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream.
        • God wants Justice and Fairness in the world
  • “One of the easiest places to hide from God is in religion”
    • We become luke-warm, comfortable, forgettable Christians
    • It becomes all about me, and not about God and His will
    • God is to be given the best, not the easiest
  • Edmond Burke quote – In the book Red Letters
    • “the definition of evil in the world is when good men and women see injustice and do nothing.”
  • Luke 10:25
    • The Parable of the Good Samaritan

25 And behold, a lawyer stood up to put him to the test, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” 26He said to him, “What is written in the Law? How do you read it?” 27And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.” 28And he said to him, “You have answered correctly; do this, and you will live.” 29But he, desiring to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” 30Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and he fell among robbers, who stripped him and beat him and departed, leaving him half dead. 31Now by chance a priest was going down that road, and when he saw him he passed by on the other side. 32So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33But a Samaritan, as he journeyed, came to where he was, and when he saw him, he had compassion. 34He went to him and bound up his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he set him on his own animal and brought him to an inn and took care of him. 35And the next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper, saying, ‘Take care of him, and whatever more you spend, I will repay you when I come back.’ 36Which of these three, do you think, proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell among the robbers?” 37He said, “The one who showed him mercy.” And Jesus said to him, “You go, and do likewise.”

    • We already know the answer to obtaining eternal life (v.25)
      • 25 And behold, a lawyer stood up to put him to the test, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?”
    • However, he tries to justify himself (v.29)
      • 29But he, desiring to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”
      • The great BUT statements of our lives (But, I…)
      • This parable is Jesus telling us how to live heaven on earth. In essence he is telling us that we are “Sons and Daughters of God”
        • Our goal is to change all of eternity b/c of our actions
          • B/c of the parable we are capable of using our influence, integrity and experiences as Sons and Daughters to create such change
          • We are children of royalty
  • In order to reflect a loving God we need to love others
  • In the parable “The Priest and Worship Leader” (Levite) pass by the Samaritan
    • What is Jesus trying to tell us about church leadership?
    • What does this say about being people of influence?
  • Mark Chapter One
    • Jesus is deeply moved by compassion
  • When we read nothing but the Red Letters of the Bible, we are witnessing great compassion at work
  • God is able to see that there is more wrong in the world than what our eyes will allow
    • When we show up somewhere, we are no longer alone b/c of the compassion of God
  • 70% of Russian orphans kicked out of the orphanages when they turn 16-17 end up in prostitution (females)
  • God is able to become a “father to the fatherless” through his people
  • Psalm 68 – Father to the Fatherless
    • 4Sing to God sing praises to his name; lift up a song to him who rides through the deserts; his name is the LORD exult before him! 5 Father of the fatherless and protector of widows is God in his holy habitation. 6God settles the solitary in a home; he leads out the prisoners to prosperity, but the rebellious dwell in a parched land. 7O God, when you went out before your people,when you marched through the wilderness, Selah
      • If God cares that much, shouldn’t we
  • We were created to live out crazy adventures
    • Jesus was a revolutionary Messiah – should we not try to be agents of change for our own earthly revolutions?
  • Jesus loved the poor so much he hid himself among them.
    • We should strive to do just that, Love Jesus so much that we hide in Him

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Notes From The Field: Part 1c

These are my personal notes from the Promise Keepers event held on the 13th and 14th of November. These are my notes and my thoughts that go along with them. They are not necessarily the thoughts of the speakers, so they should not be taken as so. This event was a fantastic, eye opening weekend that I shared with my father. Enjoy the notes and thoughts and if you have any questions feel free to comment or email me.

Thanks,

Session Three – Craig Gross

  • Founder of xxxchurch.com
  • There has been a change in the world of pornography
    • It used to be hard to obtain and see, now it is hard to avoid
    • 400 million porn sites
  • Porn isn’t real it is a reality and has no place in a healthy relationship
  • Two Truths about Porn
    • Fantasy, not reality
    • You are not alone in your struggle
  • 70 billion dollar industry
    • 12 Billion is pent on the industry which is more than the revenue for professional organized sports in North America
  • When caught in the struggle and fantasy of porn the question that needs to be asked is whether or not you are willing to fight for your family and for your relationship with God
  • “What started online has taken me offline”
    • An individual that confessed his addiction on xxxchurch
    • Online surfing only leads to even more addiction outside the comfort of home
  • Craig on what he sees when he looks at the crowds from his booth at Porn Shows
    • “These aren’t images, these are lives.”
      • The people that are in the industry are now real for Craig at the shows and he sees them with the lens of Christ
      • People broken, in pain and in most cases seeking for help
  • Best quote of the whole weekend
    • “You can’t blame the dark for being dark, you can only blame the light for being dark.”
  • “Jesus Loves Porn Stars” Bible
    • He does love Porn Stars, just not porn
      • These are children of God not images or fantasies
    • On average they give out 3-5 thousand bibles per show
  • He has never met a girl that is in the industry that says she is happy
  • Romans 7:18
    • 18For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out.
      • What holds us back in the world?
      • We begin to believe things like “I can will it, but I cannot do it.”
      • We get pulled by the influence of sin to do the opposite of Christ
  • As men if porn gets into our lives it strips us of our integrity and our word (influence)
  • Three Steps
    • 1) Step up and confess to God
      • God loves us despite our faults
      • We can’t live freely unless we are willing to die for Christ first
      • All roads to recovery begin with Jesus
    • 2) Confess to someone else
      • most confessional emails sent to xxxchurch are to the info account, not to accounts of actual people
      • They still haven’t confessed to a real person, they are still stuck in their fantasy land
      • nine out of ten conversations actually stop after they realize that it takes a real person to stop an addiction
        • They get scared off when info@xxxchurch emails them back
      • Filters found on xxxchurch.com send emails to your selected individuals to foster an accountability system
        • This allows for some light to penetrate the darkness
    • 3) Physical Removal
      • Proverbs 26:11
        • 11Like a dog that returns to his vomit is a fool who repeats his folly.
          • Who really likes vomit that much?
      • The Bible is very clear as it tells us to flee sexual sin
      • x3pure.com (type in Canada for promo offer)
        • Process of removal and a curriculum
      • At this stage if it takes getting rid of your computer do it, cell phone, blackberry etc.
      • WHATEVER IT TAKES!
  • The message of Jesus is to unite not divide
    • This was in reference to his friendship with Ron Jeremy
    • Love the sinner hate the sin idea

Notes From The Field: Part 1b

These are my personal notes from the Promise Keepers event held on the 13th and 14th of November. These are my notes and my thoughts that go along with them. They are not necessarily the thoughts of the speakers, so they should not be taken as so. This event was a fantastic, eye opening weekend that I shared with my father. Enjoy the notes and thoughts and if you have any questions feel free to comment or email me.

Thanks,

Session 2 – Ted Dibiase

 

  • He started off his session with a video from the Skit Guys about Chiseling Away the ugly parts of our live
  • The question is are we willing to let God work at us.
  • Can we submit to HIm, enough for the ugly to be removed
  • Can we let ourselves die, so that we can live
  • Revelation 3:14-22
    • 14“And to the angel of the church in Laodicea write: ‘The words of the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of God’s creation. 15“‘I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were either cold or hot! 16So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth. 17 For you say, I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing, not realizing that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked. 18I counsel you to buy from me gold refined by fire, so that you may be rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself and the shame of your nakedness may not be seen, and salve to anoint your eyes, so that you may see. 19( Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline, so be zealous and repent. 20Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me. 21 The one who conquers, I will grant him to sit with me on my throne, as I also conquered and sat down with my Father on his throne. 22 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.'”
      • Challenge from this is for us to determine what is real and what is fake
  • 90% of believers have not led anyone to Christ
    • What does this say about our commitment to the Great Commission? Has it really become the great omission of the church?
  • Ted’s step-father was a wrestler for the University of Nebraska
    • He wanted to follow in his footsteps
    • It was obvious to those that saw him that his step-father was his hero
      • This he will parallel with his relationship with God later in life.
  • His challenge was whether or not we are willing to make it so obvious in our daily lives that Christ is our father.
    • Are we just playing at church?
  • As his life progressed and like many males his pride and ego began to take a stronghold in his life
    • It is ok to be ambitious – but the key is to use gifts and talents to glorify God, not ourselves
  • Ephesians 2:8-10
    • 8For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast. 10For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
      • God prepares in advance
      • Love is to serve others
  • We need to surrender our will to God’s will when we seek out a relationship with Him
  • When we move Jesus from our head to our heart (an eighteen inch difference) it should become evident in our lives
  • God speaks to us in three different ways
    • His Word
    • Godly Men
    • Circumstance
  • Satan has the wonderful ability to tempt us at our most weakest points and for most men out there this is their pride and ego
  • The measure of a true man comes from his integrity and integrity comes from his words
  • Matthew 16:25-26
    • 25For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. 26For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul?
      • What happens to us if we gain everything if we lose our souls
      • Ted gained popularity, money and women, but he almost lost his wife
      • Are we able to move ourselves beyond lip service to God
  • “I know and see you want to be a man of God, but I don’t think you are man enough to do it.”
    • words from Ted’s wife upon learning about the adultery, and Ted’s desire for repentance
  • Jesus has an uncanny ability to take our mess and change it into a message for both ourselves and others (Godly men mentoring young men)
  • Whatever our distractions are in life we need to LET IT GO!
  • We as men need to stop playing church and being lukewarm for Jesus – Men typically only do about 20% of the work in church – this might even be too high of a percentage, it may actually be less

Notes From The Field: Part 1a

These are my personal notes from the Promise Keepers event held on the 13th and 14th of November. These are my notes and my thoughts that go along with them. They are not necessarily the thoughts of the speakers, so they should not be taken as so. This event was a fantastic, eye opening weekend that I shared with my father. Enjoy the notes and thoughts and if you have any questions feel free to comment or email me.

Thanks,

Session #1 Patrick Morley

The Parable of the Prodigal Son

11And he said, “There was a man who had two sons. 12And the younger of them said to his father, ‘Father, give me the share of property that is coming to me.’ And he divided his property between them. 13Not many days later, the younger son gathered all he had and took a journey into a far country, and there he squandered his property in reckless living. 14And when he had spent everything, a severe famine arose in that country, and he began to be in need. 15So he went and hired himself out to one of the citizens of that country, who sent him into his fields to feed pigs. 16And he was longing to be fed with the pods that the pigs ate, and no one gave him anything.

17“But when he came to himself, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have more than enough bread, but I perish here with hunger! 18I will arise and go to my father, and I will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. 19 I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Treat me as one of your hired servants.”‘ 20And he arose and came to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and felt compassion, and ran and embraced him and kissed him. 21And the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ 22But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring quickly the best robe, and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet. 23And bring the fattened calf and kill it, and let us eat and celebrate. 24For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.’ And they began to celebrate.

25“Now his older son was in the field, and as he came and drew near to the house, he heard music and dancing. 26And he called one of the servants and asked what these things meant. 27And he said to him, ‘Your brother has come, and your father has killed the fattened calf, because he has received him back safe and sound.’ 28But he was angry and refused to go in. His father came out and entreated him, 29but he answered his father, ‘Look, these many years I have served you, and I never disobeyed your command, yet you never gave me a young goat, that I might celebrate with my friends. 30But when this son of yours came, who has devoured your property with prostitutes, you killed the fattened calf for him!’ 31And he said to him, ‘Son,you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours. 32It was fitting to celebrate and be glad, for this your brother was dead, and is alive; he was lost, and is found.'”

  • A) Change Needs to Occur
    • We need to realize as men of God that as time passes on we must embrace the need to change
    • We can see this through the Parable of the Lost Son – We are able to witness the switch from rebellion to reconciliation
      • That is the change we must seek out from God
    • 1) Rebellion
      • The son chooses to orphan himself and choose a life that is full of squander and famine
      • He ends up taking a job feeding pigs
        • As a Jewish boy this would have been done out of desperation b/c pigs are considered unclean
      • 16And he was longing to be fed with the pods that the pigs ate, and no one gave him anything.”
        • The result of the rebellion is sadness, guilt and in this case hunger
    • 2) Repentance
      • The son begins to realize how well he was in the father’s house
      • He also realizes how his father’s servants had a better life than this
        • 17“But when he came to himself, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired servants have more than enough bread, but I perish here with hunger! 18I will arise and go to my father, and I will say to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. 19 I am no longer worthy to be called your son. Treat me as one of your hired servants.”‘
      • He basically says to his father “Forgive me, but only HIRE ME as your servant.”
    • 3) Restoration
      • 22But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring quickly the best robe, and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet. 23And bring the fattened calf and kill it, and let us eat and celebrate. 24For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.’ And they began to celebrate.
      • The father has unconditional love for the son
      • The son in this story never gets a chance to share with his father his repentance b/c of the overwhelming outpouring of unconditional love from the father
      • God has this unconditional love for everyone
        • Psalm 139 – Search Me O God And Know My Heart
          • Even though every child is a sinner, every father still chooses to have that child (earthly and heavenly father).
          • The Key note is that no matter what we have done we are forgiven and restored in the eyes and heart of God
  • B) What Type Of Relationship Does God Want?
    • He wants a reciprocal love relationship
    • The boy in the story begins as a son, he then orphans himself and wants to in the end, be restored not as a son, but as an orphan/servant
    • The father’s response is not to a servant, but to a son, that was lost and then found
      • 24For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.’ And they began to celebrate.”
    • Jeremiah 20:9
      • 9If I say, “I will not mention him,or speak any more in his name,”there is in my heart as it were a burning fire shut up in my bones, and I am weary with holding it in, and I cannot.
        • Love can’t be held in, b/c it burns with passion
        • The father is unable to contain the love he has for his son that is now found
  • C) What Lengths Will God Go To In Order To Obtain A Relationship
    • The father in the story and God both possess the power to let the son go, but they also obtain the power to bring us to our senses
    • Isaiah 45:7
      • 7 I form light and create darkness, I make well-being and create calamity, I am the LORD, who does all these things.
        • Power and Patience is His to bring us back into His arms
    • 2 Peter 3:8-9
      • 8But do not overlook this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. 9 The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance.
        • Timing is the Lord’s, he knows the complete plan and even though we are horrible when it comes to patience we need to realize that we cannot control or influence the will of God
    • One important note about repentance is this: The condition or past actions do not change our redemptive value or de-value our new self
      • He used the illustration that a crumpled $100 bill was just as valuable on earth as a crumpled or stomped on bill.
  • D) How Do We Further Our Relationship
    • Deep and meaningful conversation
      • Needs to be 2-Way communication