Monday, February 23, 2009

Across America - City #44

The Oakland Police Department protects the 44th largest city in America. This week we ask you to pray for the Oakland Police Department and for Chief Wayne Tucker. For the next 43 weeks Ten-Four Ministries will be contacting the police chiefs in the largest 50 cities in America and presenting them with The Gospel. This is an ongoing project called The Across America Project.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Across America - City #45

The Tulsa Police Department protects the 45th largest city in America. This week we ask you to pray for the Tulsa Police Department and for Chief Ron Palmer. For the next 44 weeks Ten-Four Ministries will be contacting the police chiefs in the largest 50 cities in America and presenting them with The Gospel. This is an ongoing project called The Across America Project.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Cell Phone Ministry

My good friend Bill over at Sowing The Seed told me about a cool ministry he is involved with where he preaches The Gospel on Friday morning to a large group of people in India (night time there). There is such a thirst for Jesus in that country that thousands of people show up to hear a translator repeat what Bill is saying from his cell phone at his residence. Bill has spent time in India doing this in person and he is going back in a few months. Here is a video of the Cell Phone Ministry.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Family Worship

A few weeks ago I documented here the importance of a book called Family Driven Faith. Along those same lines is the below devotional that also discusses the importance of Family Worship.

"Pour out Your wrath on the heathen that do not acknowledge You--and on the families that do not call upon Your name!" Jeremiah 10:25

We wonder how many of our readers have seriously pondered these awe-inspiring words! Observe what fearful threatenings are pronounced against those who disregard family worship! How unspeakably solemn to find that prayerless families are here coupled with the heathen, who do not acknowledge the Lord.

How loudly should these words speak to us! It is not enough that we pray as private individuals; we are required to honor God in our families as well. Each day, the whole household should be gathered together to bow before the Lord--to confess their sins, to give thanks for God's mercies, to seek His help and blessing. Nothing must be allowed to interfere with this duty--all other domestic arrangements are to bend to it. The head of the house is the one to lead the devotions. If he is absent--or seriously ill--or an unbeliever, then the wife should take his place. But under no circumstances, should family worship be omitted. If we would enjoy the blessing of God upon our family--then let its members gather together daily for praise and prayer. "Those who honor Me--I will honor" is His promise.

All our domestic comforts and temporal mercies, issue from the loving-kindness of the Lord. The least we can do in return, is to gratefully acknowledge together, His goodness to us as a family. Excuses against the discharge of this sacred duty--are idle and worthless! Of what avail will it be when we render an account to God for the stewardship of our families--to say that we had no time available? The more pressing are our temporal duties--the greater our need of seeking divine help. Nor may any Christian plead that he is not qualified for such a work--gifts and talents are developed by use--and not by neglect.

Family worship should be conducted reverently, earnestly and simply. It is then, that the little ones will receive their first impressions, and form their initial conceptions of the Lord God. Great care needs to be taken, lest a false idea of the Divine Character be given to them.

The advantages and blessings of family worship are incalculable! First, family worship will prevent much sin. Daily prayer in the home, is a blessed means of grace for allaying those unhappy passions to which our common nature is subject. It awes the soul, conveys a sense of God's majesty and authority, and sets solemn truths before the mind. How can those who neglect the worship of God in their families--look for peace and comfort therein?

Personal piety in the home is the most influential means, under God, of conveying piety to the little ones. Children are largely creatures of imitation, loving to copy what they see in others.

Finally, family prayer gains for us the presence and blessing of the Lord. There is a promise of His presence which is peculiarly applicable to this duty, "Where two or three are gathered together in My name--I am there among them." Matthew 18:20. Many have found in family worship, that help and communion with God--which they sought for with less effect in private prayer.

Arthur Pink

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Are You Lukewarm?

I would like to thank Sgt/Chaplain M.C. Williams over at Centurion Law Enforcement Ministry for pointing out Chapter 4 in Pastor Francis Chan's book called Crazy Love (which I have but have not read yet).

Pastor Chan challenges believers to examine themselves. “examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith; test yourselves. Do you not realize that Christ Jesus is in you - unless, of course you fail the test?" 2 Cor. 13:5.

What does Christ think about those of us that are Lukewarm? “So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth." Revelation 3:16

Francis Chan gives 18 examples of what a lukewarm person looks like:

1. Lukewarm people attend church fairly regularly. It is what is expected of them, what they believe “good Christians do, so they go. (Isaiah 29:13)

2. Lukewarm people give money to charity and to the church…as long as it doesn’t impinge on their standard of living. If they have a little extra and it is easy and safe to give, they do so. After all, God loves a cheerful giver, right? (1 Chronicles 21:24; Luke 21:1-4)

3. Lukewarm people tend to choose what is popular over what is right when they are in conflict. They desire to fit in both at church and outside of church; they care more about what people think of their actions (like church attendance and giving) than what God thinks of their hearts and lives (Luke 6:26; Rev. 3:1; Matthew 23:5-7).

4. Lukewarm people don’t really want to be saved from their sin; they want only to be saved from the penalty of their sin. They don’t genuinely hate sin and aren’t truly sorry for it; they’re merely sorry because God is going to punish them. Lukewarm people don’t really believe that this new life Jesus offers is better than the old sinful one (John 10:10; Romans 6:1-2).

5. Lukewarm people are moved by stories about people who do radical things for Christ, yet they do not act. They assume such action is for “extreme” Christians, not average ones. Lukewarm people call “radical” what Jesus expected of all His followers (James 1:22; James 4:17; Matthew 21:28-31).

6. Lukewarm people rarely share their faith with their neighbors, coworkers, or friends. They do not want to be rejected, nor do they want to make people uncomfortable by talking about private issues like religion (Matthew 10:32-33).

7. Lukewarm people gauge their morality or “goodness” by comparing themselves to the secular world. They feel satisfied that while they aren’t as hard-core for Jesus as so-and-so, they are nowhere as horrible as the guy down the street (Luke 18:11-12).

8. Lukewarm people say they love Jesus, and He is, indeed, a part of their lives. But only a part. They give Him a section of their time, their money, and thoughts, but He isn’t allowed to control their lives (Luke 9:57-62).

9. Lukewarm people love God, but they do not love Him with all their heart, soul, strength. They would be quick to assure you that they try to love God that much, but that sort of total devotion isn’t really possible for the average person; it’s only for pastors and missionaries and radicals (Matthew 22:37-38).

10. Lukewarm people love others but do not seek to love others as much as they love themselves. Their love of others is typically focused on those who love them in return, like family, friends, and other people they know and connect with. There is little love left over for those who cannot love them back, much less for those who intentionally slight them, whose kids are better athletes than theirs, or with whom conversations are awkward or uncomfortable. Their love is highly conditional and very selective, and generally comes with strings attached (Matthew 5:43-47; Luke 14:12-14).

11. Lukewarm people will serve God and others, but there are limits to how far they will go or how much time, money and energy they are willing to give (Luke 18:21-25).

12. Lukewarm people thinik abou tlife on earth much more often than eternity in heaven. Daily life is mostly focused on today’s to-do list, this week’s schedule, and next month’s vacation. Rarely, if ever, do they intently consider the life to come. Regarding this, C.S. Lewis wrote, “If you read history you will find that the Christians who did most for the present world were precisely those who thought most of the next. It is since Christians have largely ceased to think of the other world that they have become so ineffective in this” (Philippians 3:18-20; Colossians 3:2).

13. Lukewarm people are thankful for their luxuries and comforts, and rearelyconsider trying to give as much as possible to the poor. They are quick to point out, “Jesus neer said money is the root of all evil, only that the love of money is.” Untold numbers of lukewarm people feel “Called” to minister to the rich; very few feel “called” to minister to the poor (Matthew 25:34, 40; Isaiah 58:6-7).

14. Lukewarm people do whatever is necessary to keep themselves from feeling too guilty. They want to tdo the bare minimum, to be “good enough” without it requiring to much of them. They ask, “How far can I go before it’s considered a sin?” instead of “How can I keep myself pure as a temple of the Holy Spirit?” They ask, “How much do I have to give?” instead of “How much can I give?” They ask, “How much time should I spend praying and reading my Bible? instead of “I wish I didn’t have to go to work, so I could sit here and read longer!” (1 Chronicles 29:14; Matthew 13:44-46).

15. Lukewarm people are continually concerned with playing it safe; they are slaves to the god of control. This focus on safe living keeps them from sacrificing and risking for God (1 Timothy 6:17-18; Matthew 10:28).

16. Lukewarm people feel secure because they attend church, made a profession of faith at age twelve, were baptized, come from a Christian family, vote Republican, or live in America. Just as the prophets in teh Old Testament warned Israel that they were not safe just because they lived in the land of Israel, so we are not safe just because we wear the label Christian or because some people persist in calling us a “Christian nation” (Matthew 7:21; Amos 6:1)

17. Lukewarm people do not live by faith; their lives are structured so they never have to. They dont have to trust God if something unexpected happens-they have their savings account. They don’t need God to help them - they have their retirement plan in place. They don’t genuinely seek out what life God would have them live - they have life figured and mapped out. THey don’t depend on God on a daily basis - their refrigerators are ful and, for the most part, they are in good health. The truth is, their lives wouldn’t look much different if they suddenly stopped believing in God (Luke 12:16-21; Hebrews 11).

18. Lukewarm people probably drink and swear less than average, but besides that, they really aren’t very different from your typical unbeliever. They equate their partially sanitized lives with holiness, but they couldn’t be more wrong (Matthew 23:25-28).

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Across America - City #46

With a population of 380,000, Minneapolis is the 46th largest city in America. This week join the Ten-Four Ministry Family and pray specifically for the Minneapolis Police Department and their Chief of Police, Timothy Dolan.

For the next 45 weeks Ten-Four Ministries will be contacting the police chiefs in the largest 50 cities in America and presenting them with The Gospel. This is an ongoing project called The Across America Project.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Ten-Four Ministries Store Is Online

We have launched our online store that includes books such as Take Up The Shield, our Challenge Coin and DVD's. We will soon add our new tracts.

All proceeds from the store will go to our 10-33 Fund. In the month of February, all orders over $25 will receive free shipping. You can go to the store by clicking here.

Monday, February 09, 2009

The Board

A few weeks ago I saw a movie that impacted me so much, I purchased several to sell in our Store. Written, produced and filmed by a Church in Indiana, The Board is a movie that depicts the Soul as characters in a Board Room - Mind, Memory, Emotion, Heart, Will, and Conscience each weigh in on the consequences of their sin and whether they should listen to others that have been telling them about Jesus. Here is the trailer of the movie:

If you are interested in this movie, you can purchase it here. We are currently offering free shipping for all orders over $25. All proceeds from our store go to the 10-33 Fund.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Omaha, Nebraska - Part 2

I went to Omaha, Nebraska last January and I told myself at the time that Nebraska was not a good state to come to in the Winter. I didn’t plan on going back but as God would have it, I spent the last 24 hours there.

I was invited by the Omaha Police Department to teach a class to their driving instructors. I’ve been involved in this training for close to 13 years and in the last few years I have accepted several speaking engagements in reference to the training. It is a blessing to get to meet officers from across the country and today someone showed up to the class from 100 miles away that simply saw it on a website.

I am really the most unlikely person to speak in front of the men and women in blue and I never would of thought I would have the opportunities that I have to do that. In the last few years I have met officers from more places than I can mention here.

Lately, I never speak to a group without mentioning Jesus Christ. Today was no exception and to some it may seem odd to mention Jesus at a police department and present those attending with the Gospel. We constantly hear about the separation of church and state and to put it simple, as long as I am invited to speak, I will speak about my Savior. To this day, I continue to be invited to speak even though many of those inviting me know that at the end of the presentation on law enforcement training I will mention Jesus. I did the same thing in front of the New York State Police last year and this April I have been invited back to that State.

Sometimes our fears to speak out are just that, fears. I simply push through the fear and do it anyway. Today was special. The 28 instructors listened intently to my presentation and when they saw me break out the 10-4 Ministry Challenge Coins they all wanted one and some gave me coins of their own. I made sure to tell them that the message inside the coin insert was literally about life and death.

I am writing this while I sit in the Omaha Airport and I am overcome with joy that God has permitted me to do what I do. He has opened doors that can only be done by Him and I am continually amazed at the opportunities I am presented.

Will I go back to Omaha if I am asked? Absolutely, even if its winter.

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Across America - City #47

The Colorado Springs Police Department protects the 47th largest city in America. This week we ask you to pray for the Colorado Police Department and for Chief Richard Myers. For the next 46 weeks Ten-Four Ministries will be contacting the police chiefs in the largest 50 cities in America and presenting them with The Gospel. This is an ongoing project called The Across America Project.

Sunday, February 01, 2009

The Centurion Fellowship

Hearts can harden fast. The writer of Hebrews explains this: "But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called 'today,' that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin" (3:13).

So for first responders that work in unique environments and have unique schedules, accountability with Christian brothers and sisters is very important. The hardness that creates "an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God" (Heb. 3:12) can literally happen in a day.

I have been burdened for some time that my fellow first responders need an online outlet for discipleship and accountability. Through the financial blessings of our members, we have been able to make that burden a reality.

Ten-Four Ministries has started the Centurion Fellowship. The Centurion Fellowship is a unique, private, online community of Christians who are first responders in their respective communities.

The Centurion Fellowship is not designed to replace the local church but is designed to assist with the specific needs with first responders. We recognize that the demands that first responders face (shift work, fatigue, stress, working on Sunday) may prohibit the fellowship and accountability with other Christians that are so important for followers of Jesus Christ.

Joining the Centurion Fellowship is free of charge but it does require that you are a current, former or retired first responder or chaplain. Unlike many current message boards out there that cater to first responders, this one will be private and requires that you submit a short application.

Bible reading, sermons, chat sessions, study series and accountability answers to fellow members are some of the activities you will be given the opportunity to participate in. While we are prayerful that you will join us, please understand that joining the Fellowship will require at least weekly action on your part. Specifically answering several accountability questions.

The Centurion Fellowship will no doubt be a challenge to your already busy schedule but we believe it can be an incredible blessing to meet and fellowship with other first responders. We also have a section for Chaplains.

Please spread the word. We are excited about this new ministry and the potential it has to offer our current and former first responders.

We look forward to meeting you.

"Where there is no guidance, a people falls, but in an abundance of counselors there is safety." - Proverbs 11:14