Wednesday, March 21, 2018

The Mission with Purpose

In February, SpaceX founder Elon Musk launched a new rocket called the Falcon Heavy into space carrying a red Tesla Roadster.  The new rocket is a big step in their goal of sending a man to Mars and in 50 years establishing a city with a million people on the planet.  It is a big goal that hinges on the success of this new rocket.

The Falcon Heavy rocket is the most powerful rocket in the world and has an amazing payload of 64 metric tons which is equal to 737 jetliners fully loaded.  It is composed of three engine cores that generate 5 million pounds of thrust.  The three engines, after completing the task of launching the large payload into space, return back to earth to be used again. (  It is an amazing synchronization of millions of parts working together for a historic purpose that is changing the way we view the universe.

So, what does all this have to do with the red Tesla Roadster?  The Roadster became the first automobile in orbit.  The Tesla had absolutely nothing to do on the trip.  It set back in its custom-made cargo area and let the well-engineered rockets take it to its destination.  It has the capability of going 0-60 in 1.9s and a top speed of over 250mph running off a battery that has a range of 620 miles. Yet, on this journey it found itself a passenger.

The church is called to be “intent on one purpose” and “the body of Christ.”  It is made up of individual members with different abilities and gifts working together to accomplish this purpose.  Too many times those who have great ability to be used in the church find themselves a passenger of a ministry in which they are not well-equipped to help.  What is your place within the body of Christ?  God has made you special with a unique purpose.  When you find that purpose you help the church live its purpose as you excel for the glory of God.

Tuesday, March 13, 2018

Run the Play

Oklahoma and Oklahoma State have had two of the best offenses in the nation for several years.  It is only possible because of the ingenuity of the coaches.  It is amazing their ability to call the right play at the right time.  They design plays that are able to catch the defense off guard.  They get the ball into the hands of their playmakers with the right blockers in front of them where they turn a short run into a long touchdown.  However, no matter how great the play call was it is up to the players to run the play and make the most of it.

One of the struggles in churches is we have lots of ingenious plays being called.  We dream up great ministry and outreach ideas that are certain to draw many to a place for them to hear the Gospel or a new discipleship class that we think could help people grow in their walk with Christ.  The problem becomes that they are never run.  We hold on to the ideas because we think they need more planning, better funding or we are not sure we will have enough workers to pull it off.  So, these great ideas are sat on and the play is never run.  Bob Mayfield posted on his blog,, a great video clip of J.D. Greear encouraging us to run the play.

This is what it means to have faith.  James said in James 2:17 “faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.”  Faith is action.  We can talk about ministry, plan ministry and even budget ministry but if we do not take action we are not living in faith.  Let us not think we have to have every question answered and every scenario accounted for before we step out in faith.  If we had all the answers it would not be faith.  The only way we will accomplish big things for God is to listen to the plays he calls and run the play.

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

Growing to Independence

One of the goals of raising children is for them to one day leave the home and be independent.  Now, as I am experiencing this with Jordan it is not always easy.  Letting go and allowing your influence to change is difficult.  However, it is what we raised her to be ready for.  This is also true in ministry.  We are to grow up and learn to find some independence in our faith.  We must advance from just milk to digesting the meat of God’s word on our own.  We go from being held accountable to holding others accountable.  The result of good discipleship is the learner becoming the teacher.

This is one of the reasons I am so excited about the new direction of Manna Ministries.  We have a plan to help our ministry partners in Malawi to become self sufficient in providing for the orphans, widows and pastors we support.  Over the next five years we are going to pour resources into these ministries in order to provide them the foundation they need in order for them to eventually to take over the support of these ministries on their own.  From now on you can be certain that the gift you make to Manna Ministries not only provides for the current needs but will help them be taken care of well into the future. 

One of the big changes is the understanding of the purpose of Manna Ministries.  Manna Ministries now includes not only the feeding centers but also the church planting endeavors in Malawi as we support pastors and churches to start new churches in villages around them.  We need more people to support this ministry on a monthly basis over the next 5 years.  We have a $80,000 per year budget over the next 5 years to get us towards this goal.  Between Eastern Heights, Washington-Osage Baptist Association, and Sozo Ministries we are currently about $1000 a month short of this goal for this year.  On top of the yearly budget we have set a goal to raise $100,000 to start a large scale farm that will be the financial catalyst to meet these needs going forward.  A 30-50 acre farm with irrigation will serve as a long-term financial solution that will support the feeding centers and pastors.  We believe that hundreds of churches will be planted in the future as the result of this new farm.

I am excited for the day when we can say that we are no longer needed.  Not because we want out of the ministry but because they have matured to sustain the ministry on their own.  Our current model meant that we could not enlarge the ministry without enlarging our monthly contributions.  In the future we will be able to enlarge the ministry and leave them with the infrastructure they need to sustain the ministry on their own.  This will be a true mark of maturity, independence.  It will be a day, like the one I face in less than two weeks, that will bring sadness and excitement all at the same time.  Will you help us bring Manna Ministries to a place of maturity?