Posts Tagged ‘Worship’

African Children’s Choir

Monday, April 19th, 2010

Introduction to the African Children’s Choir from Max Clements on Vimeo.

On Tuesday, April 20th at 7:00 p.m., Trinity Church, located 3355 Dunckel Rd., will be hosting the African Children’s Choir. This is a free event. If you are in the Lansing area, please call the office for tickets and join us for an evening of worship and celebration. I am praying that God will use these kids to speak into our lives and inspire us to love and serve Jesus better.

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Leftovers

Tuesday, November 24th, 2009

leftovers 300x201 Leftovers

I love my leftovers. Chinese, Thanksgiving dinner, Ribs, and Pizza are a few of my favorites. Whereas I love leftovers, I am certain that God doesn’t enjoy them. Yet, there are times when we find ourselves offering our Great King stuff we have already devoured. It is easy for us to cut corners and offer God and others “leftovers,” “just enough” and shoddy service, isn’t it?

I think we get careless and reckless in our worship and service because we begin to question and doubt his love for us, we forget that he is the great King of Universe, and we become too familiar with handling holy things.

Man, I don’t want to be like the priests and people in Malachi (1:6-14), guilty of the evil crime of offering God sacrifices that a human superior would not accept. He is insulted when we just go through the motions, or when our devotion is turned into duty.

I have decided to live in this book for the next several weeks and let Malachi’s words wash over my heart. Join me in asking the following questions of the sacrifices of your body (Romans 12:1-2), your money (Philippians 4:14-18), your praise (Hebrews 13:15), your good works (Hebrews 13:16), and your witnessing to people who are far from God:

1. Am I giving my best?

2. Am I giving to God first?

3. Is my giving to God costing me anything?

I believe God is calling me to a conscientious spirituality – one that thinks about and changes the attitude and motives of my sacrifice and one that thinks about and increases the quality and cost of my sacrifice.

What other areas of sacrifice can you add to the list? When are you most tempted to offer God leftovers? Which of the five areas above do you need to evaluate and offer God a better sacrifice?

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The Last 3 Minutes

Wednesday, June 10th, 2009

I was at a luncheon on yesterday, where Don Cousins, author of LeaderShift, was speaking to a group of pastors. I was sitting next to a distinguished gentleman, who is a very prominent leader in the black community and an associate minister at the host church. While we listened to the talk (It really was a great talk), he made it pretty obvious that he did not want to be there. He seemed to grow more and more impatient with each passing minute. He checked his watch at least 10-15 times and held his head down almost the entire talk, fiddling with his PDA.

Minutes before Cousins finished his talk, the man got up to leave, but his pastor asked him to stay until Cousins was completely done. He complied. Afterwards, he told his pastor that during the talk he was convinced that his church was not the place for him and that he was leaving. Then he said, “But, in the last three minutes of the talk, the Lord spoke to me, telling me there is work to be done. I’m staying.” Now, Cousins’ talk lasted almost an hour (Every leader and pastor should have heard it), but it was the last three minutes that impacted this man and changed his mind.

This brief exchange taught me a few lessons:

  • 180 seconds in more than enough time for God to speak and change a mind and a life.
  • If I bail out of a message or prayer or a conversation too soon, I could be missing what God wants to say to me, to disturb me, encourage me, challenge me, bless me, empower me, sustain me, and even rearrange my values to align with his. The last three minutes of my quiet time with God, listening to message, or having a conversation with a mentor or a friend, might be the most important minutes of the entire time. 
  • I need to dial in, be fully present, and listen carefully.

How have you experienced God speaking to you in a short period of time? How did you respond to his voice?

Popularity: 29% [?]

When Work Isn’t Working Out

Tuesday, December 16th, 2008

 When Work Isnt Working Out

Welcome back! All right, you have been trying to respect and obey TJOTY (the jerk of the year) because you know it makes God look good, you believe it can save your job, you understand it is the best way to get ahead and you know it is what God tells you to do. Moreover, you have not taken advantage of the relationship you have with your boss who is a believer. However, it seems like most days you leave work and go home unhappy – about the work you do, where you work and for whom you work. Soul Man, what do I do when work isn't working out for me? Can I just press the escape button and leave? There are two key questions you should ask before you escape:

1. Am I being asked to do something unethical? You would be surprised (or maybe not) at the number of employers who ask their employees to do unethical and even illegal things. Some employees feel they must obey for fear of losing their jobs. Are you being asked to do something unethical?

  • If yes: then obey God, not man, and be ready to accept the consequences. In cases where you are being asked to do something unethical, your greater responsibility is to God and his values. Now, you might very well lose your job over standing up for what is right, but I am convinced that God will provide for you and your family. The material reward for living right and standing up for truth may not come immediately, but it will come. The immediate reward is obedience to God. 
  • If no: then obey your boss. If your boss has not asked you to do something unethical, just stupid, then obey your boss. Now, if you have a better idea or a more efficient way of doing the job, then lobby passionately and respectfully for it. Otherwise, respect and obey your boss.  

2. Can I quit? The natural question to ask, if you are unhappy in your job, is can I afford to quit and/or should I quit?   

  • If yes: then you should probably move on. If you can afford to quit your present job, then you are free to move on and find another or better job. Before you become more bitter, too divisive and a liability to the company, it may be better if you resigned your position and began praying and searching for a different job. 
  • If no: then you need to make the most of it. If you cannot afford to quit because this is the best possible job you can find right now, or you need the money and the insurance, or you are too close to retirement or you are a few years away from being fully vested or you simply can't afford to relocate, then it is wise that you stay in your present position and make the most of it, with a good attitude (Unless God has given you clear direction to make a move). This will challenge many of you – if you cannot quit because this is the best possible job you can find right now, then you should thank God, and send your employer and boss a "thank you" letter for letting you remain with the company, especially in a struggling economy. 

The goal is that every employer would want to hire a Jesus follower because of his/her good and godly character and impeccable work ethic. As you continue to do your job, do all you do as if Jesus is your boss. 

Popularity: 7% [?]

My Boss is a Jerk!

Friday, December 12th, 2008

How many times is a week have you felt like this woman in the picture – doing a job and working for a boss that sucked? Things don’t always work according to the plan, do they? Some of you are working for bosses or you know someone who is working for a boss, who is a real jerk (and you have heard other expletives too, I imagine). Some of you are just one nerve away from ‘losing your mind and acting a fool up in here, up in here!’ Before you go off and lay your religion down, remember your work is part of your worship and service to God. Soul Man, then what do I do if I am working for TJOTY (the jerk of the year)?

If your boss is a jerk, you still have a responsibility to respect and obey because… 

1. It makes God look good. When your boss is acting like a jerk, making you come in early, stay late, work weekends and holidays, piling on loads of work, not commending you for good work or recommending you for a better job or more money, don’t start: stealing from the company (I deserve this), becoming argumentative and bitter, coming in late, taking “looooong” lunch breaks, leaving early, and being a mediocre employee. This only makes you look bad and it gives unbelievers a reason to speak against God and your faith. Despite your boss being a jerk, continue to produce your best work, with a good attitude. When you do this, you make God and your faith attractive to others. Don’t forget, you are an ambassador, in your workplace, for the King.  
    
2. It will save your job. When your boss is acting like a jerk, it is so easy and even satisfying to give her a piece of your unholy mind or to make life hard for her. The wise employee, however, understands, to do this, is to invite the terror and wrath of her boss on herself (The only thing worse than a woman scorned, is a boss scorned and humiliated by a subordinate). This could lead to you forfeiting your livelihood (you can forget that raise or that bonus), your future with the company or even a great recommendation if you decide to leave the company. I know God will provide, but we need to be wise.


Tomorrow’s post: Two More Reasons and When Work is not Working for Me

   

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