Promo Video- ELP SUMMIT 2013

I rarely post stuff from work but we just finished creating this new amazing video for a training event we’re having in April for the Teen Challenge’s Emerging Leaders Program! Check it out and let me know what you think!

Also, here is a page I created for this specific event as well:
http://elp.tc/whats-new/elp-summit-2013/

“I have worked much harder, been in prison more frequently, been flogged more severely, and been exposed to death again and again. 24 Five times I received from the Jews the forty lashes minus one. 25 Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was pelted with stones,three times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and a day in the open sea, 26 I have been constantly on the move. I have been in danger from rivers, in danger from bandits, in danger from my fellow Jews, in danger from Gentiles; in danger in the city, in danger in the country, in danger at sea; and in danger from false believers. 27 I have labored and toiled and have often gone without sleep; I have known hunger and thirst and have often gone without food; I have been cold and naked.”

-Written by Paul in 2 Corinthians

And we think we have it hard?

Hiker

Psalm 40:3 – A life verse to stand on

He put a new song in my mouth,
a hymn of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear the Lord
and put their trust in him.

-Psalm 40:3

I read this verse again this morning and I feel that it really describes what God has done in my life these past few years. I think its truly a verse that I plan to stand on as a life verse that will help me remember what he has done and what He now plans to do.

There are two amazing contrasts to this verse: First of all it talks about a new song of praise to God that has been placed into the writers mouth. Secondly it talks about the effects of this and how it will bring many to know the Lord through it.

I know that the Father has placed totally new things in my mouth and in my heart through the power of the Holy Spirit. He has not only given me another chance through His grace but also a new heart with new passions and desires. I don’t desire what I once did and now desire better things that bring me closer to him. These things bring me true peace and contentment no matter what life troubles come my way.

ImageAlso, God has also started using me to lead others to put their trust in Him. As I continue to allow him to replace the old with the new I have seen more people than I can count turn to Jesus and receive the fullness of life that He offers. Its so amazing how good God is and how he really can use the weak ones of this world (me) to confound or perplex the wise by the awesome things he does in and through them.

Today, let God give you a new song in your heart and allow him to use you to lead others to put their trust and hope in Him!

Canada Winnipeg

Canada Trip part 2

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It was -30 several days that we were there!

The next morning our team split up. Six of us drove on to Canada while three stayed in the states. Around lunch we finally arrived at our destination at the Teen Challenge in downtown Winnipeg. It was well below zero when we arrived and there was snow everywhere. I had never experienced that kind of weather so the new scenery was really intriguing.

After unpacking our stuff we had some lunch and then headed out to a local mission where they feed the needy called “Lighthouse Mission.” There were hundreds of people that came through that place for a meal and to get out of that cold that day. It was an amazing place to minister to the people and get to talk to them. I met a really skeptical atheist named George and spent over an hour talking to him. Eventually he opened up and admitted to numerous addictions, issues with depression and that he had been seriously contemplating suicide the previous 3 days. Before we dropped him off at a hotel that he was staying in we were able to pray for him and he asked Jesus to free him from the issues troubling him and to reveal himself. From the moment we hit the ground in Canada God was opening up doors for us!

One of the important words that God gave us while praying for the trip is to look for “common ground” with the people we were going to encounter. God even gave us names of people beforehand that we could pray for. The man God gave me was named David and when I first looked at the student roster I looked for a guy named David and must have skipped his name. A few days later a guy mentioned to me that one of the guys there was named David. I got really excited when I realized that this was the guy the Lord had given me to pray for.

Our first night at the Teen Challenge we shared during the nighttime devotions that they have. It was another amazing opportunity to share my testimony with a new group of students currently in the program. I love sharing with them so much because I remember so clearly sitting in their same situation just a few years ago.  We had a great chance to share with them and worship together before bed.

The first full day that we had there I worked with two brand new students at a church where we helped set up for this massive missions festival at one of the largest churches in Manitoba. It was a great time for us to build relationships with these guys. This actually paid off the next day when on guy, Harley was cussing people out and wanted to walk off in -30 degree weather. My friend Charley was then able to pull the guy and talk to him and call him down. There’s no doubt that he ended up staying because Charley was able to talk to him based on the report we had built while working at the church.

The second night we were there we had an amazing chance to go out to this youth center in a city about 2 hours away. While there our team got to share testimonies and I was able to preach to the group. It was such a cool facility and such an amazing opportunity to minister to the youth there in that small town called Winkler. The name of the place was called the bunker.

ImageSo then after we left from this youth center called The Bunker we drove home to Winnipeg. The only problem was that our alternator went out in the van and we got stuck about 30 minutes or so away from where we were staying. That was (conveniently) the coldest night we were there and it got down to -40. Our van lost power and we waited over an hour to get someone to come out and rescue us from our messed up van. Thankfully we all made it back and no one got any frostbite!

This is part 2 of 3-4 posts I’m gonna be sharing about my trip to Canada earlier this month. Check back and I’ll post the next one soon!

Canada Trip part 1

So a few weeks ago I actually wrote this to put up on a blog but haven’t had any time to post it. Here is part 1 of 3 about my trip to the Teen Challenge in Winnipeg, Canada a few weeks ago!

A few weeks ago when I was asked to join a group mission trip to Canada I had no idea how much of an adventure it would all turn out to be. I also had no idea that it was going to end up being as rewarding as it was. The trip for me really started on the 24th when I flew out to Kansas City for the weekend where I was able to go promote Teen Challenge at a concert. I stayed out there the next few days until the rest of the team arrived on Sunday to stay for the night until we traveled the rest of the way to Canada.

Our plans very quickly changed over the next few days. That first night on their way to KC their brakes started having issues but did eventually make it. Rather than leaving early that morning we ended up (thankfully) having a staff member from that Teen challenge center fix the brakes. Eventually we headed out for the long 14 + hour trip to Winnipeg, Manitoba.

Later that evening while driving in South Dakota we ended up hitting a very frightening and unexpected detour. At about 10:30 we hit some black ice, spun off the road and flipped our van into the median. Most of our group didn’t even have shoes on and had to crawl out of the upside down van through the smashed windows. By God’s grace and his protection no one was hurt badly at all!

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That night we had a few people help us from the closest town and the paramedics took us to a hotel in Watertown, SD. Our whole group was so thankful to be safe but extremely shaken up by the whole experience. We were 1000+ miles from home and were wondering what to do from there.

Thankfully the next morning the Teen Challenge in Central Canada sent a staff member named Terry who drove all the way down to pick us up and drive our group back in their van. He showed up mid-day and we then headed out on our way to Canada finally. We drive until around 10 that night and then we finally reached the border. When we hit their border patrol we were asked to come in for questioning and it ended up 3 of our guys were denied entry into Canada. That night we ended up driving back to a small town in North Dakota and getting a hotel until we could figure out what to do next. It had been quite an amazing adventure but this is just the beginning!

I will post the rest of the story in the following 2 posts 🙂

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