Saturday, April 30, 2011

Mission Alabama: Tornado Tragedy

The tragedy of last week's tornado outbreak in the south has been well documented in the media and our ministry feels a call to the area. We did not know in what capacity 24 hours ago when we placed an e-mail out to those signed up for our e-newsletter but it appears that we now are being led to a specific area to help specific individuals.

While in the days to come, tremendous resources will be given to those in need, there is a group that are often forgotten. In general, those in this tragedy are able to focus on clean up, rebuilding, healing and at times mourning. For the first responders that are working in the area, they too often do not have time to do the things that others can do. Despite the urgent need to tend to family, etc. they have another mission...tending to the citizens in their community.

There are three specific communities that continue to be brought to our attention by multiple sources in the last 24 hours. In each city, multiple officers have lost property, police/fire agencies have been destroyed and equipment is damaged or detroyed.

Phil Cambell & Hackleburg, Alabama and Smithville, Mississippi.

We have gathered most of the names of the officers in each agency and the needs are tremendous. In fact, we were told today that "any help" is needed. While in due time, homes will be replaced and biils reimbursed, what is needed now are immediate resources for food, clothing, etc. We will also be providing emotional support and more importantly hope in Jesus Christ.

In the short term, we will be on the ground within a week but we will be talking with officials there to be able to provide more long term assistance so that the first responders can be given time to tend to their homes and family.

The devastation is hard to fathom and I spoke to officers in the area today and they told me that what they are seeing cannot be described. Entire towns are gone and in the case of Hackleburg, approximately 15% of the population is dead.

There will be plenty of opportunities from various organizations to donate during this time and we would like you to do that very thing. We would also like you to pray & consider donating to our ministry. All of the funds given will be used to provide resources directly to first responders in need. The officers going with us to help will use their own funds to do so....Your donation will be used in whole towards helping a first responder directly.

In one week, we will be in the area providing assistance. Online donations of any amount can help.

You can send a check/money order to:

Ten-Four Ministries
C/O Disaster Relief Fund
P.O. Box 52005
Tulsa, OK. 74152

There will be much more on this issue in the days to come. We encourage you to follow us on Facebook as we will be reporting from the area.

Friday, April 29, 2011

PNP SWAT Exhibition

During our resent Mission Trip to the Philippine National Police Department, we were given an exhibition by the SWAT Team. Here is one of those.

"Religion Kills": Preached to the Philippine National Police Department

Armor of God Project: Police One Interview

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Easter 2011 - Driscoll

Here are excerpts from a powerful sermon preached by Pastor Mark Driscoll.

You can watch the full length sermon here.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The Importance of Training

Travis Yates, Director of Ten-Four Ministries, interviews Philippine National Police Colonel Albert Ferro at a recent training event in the Philippines. The two discussed the importance of adding spiritual training to the police training, the PNP's needs and the future partnerships between American and Philippine police departments.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Courageous Movie Review

Let me start by letting you know that shortly after I became a Christian, I found myself unable to enjoy the comedy clubs, music and movies that I had once loved. It hit me one day that I had to put all those things away that were not glorifying to God…the crude humor, immoral innuendo, blasphemy and lyrics that promoted sin. Although I was dedicated to my new Lord, (I did put the stuff away), I reacted like Lot’s wife, turning back and looking…somewhat lamenting the loss of “fun” in my life. I resigned myself to the fact that I would never again enjoy jokes, movies or music.

Leave it to the Kendrick brothers to blow away that notion! One of the highlights of the movie, Courageous, is the side splitting humor sprinkled throughout, all of it clean and gentle. No one’s feelings have to be hurt by sarcasm for a joke to be funny, and gross vulgarities are not only unnecessary, but they truly ruin a good time.

In Courageous, we join a group of 4 sheriff’s deputies and a manual laborer named Javier. These men face daily dilemmas related to job and family and learn to rely on each other and God in this inspiring, but humorous flick. How will they respond when the ultimate tragedy befalls one of them?

But this review is not just about the entertainment value of Courageous, but rather the spiritual value. Let’s use three measuring sticks (you could pick several others, I’m sure), to try to judge the merit of this movie. Ultimately, the question is, should you spend the resources God has provided you with to see this flick? Or would your money be better spent elsewhere…there is certainly need all around us.

Here are the three criteria we will use to discern the worth of Courageous in order of importance.

1.Is God glorified?
2.Will the movie tempt someone to sin?
3.Is there a practical application to the lessons learned within?

I will consider them in reverse order:

Is there a practical application to the lessons learned within?
The basic setting of Courageous is the life of a few families, specifically the men of the families in a town in Georgia. These men are police officers, who are joined by a manual laborer friend as well. The meaningful dialogue creates meaningful character development as they go through day to day life, both on the job and at home. You really get a sense quickly for each character’s personality.

One side plot of the movie is the gang related activity. Although I will highly recommend this movie, I would not call it “kid-friendly.” There are scenes where drug paraphernalia is depicted, as well as a brutal gang-initiation. It is done well, in the sense that the idea is depicted without gratuitous violence or mimicked drug use, but I would not take a child under 13 to this movie due to that content. I’d say if you are ready to talk to your child about drugs and gang violence, it is up to you, but some of the scenes could be scary for more sensitive children.

But the gang activity is necessary for the story, and they do a brilliant job of tying together the characters in relationships that are believable. Ultimately, the message that comes across is the importance of a father in the life of children.

Just like the Love Dare in Fireproof, the main character in the movie ends up with a set of “Resolutions.” Resolving to be a biblical father and husband, the main character, Adam Mitchell offers examples of repentance for missed opportunities, and redemption in this life as he strives to make amends for his errant ways. These “Resolutions” will definitely be a best-seller, and with a September 30 release, expect lots of Christmases to be chock full of Courageous Resolutions.

Finally, there is a one on one presentation of the gospel which was of such quality as could be used for training. Without compromising a shred of truth, Nathan Hayes (Michael, Kirk Cameron’s friend in Fireproof) shares the plan of redemption in Christ alone with his partner David Thomson. But while sharing the message and confronting David’s sin, Nathan doesn’t lack any of the compassion and love that we are commanded to have when giving a defense for what we believe with meekness and fear. (1 Peter 3:15)

Will the movie tempt someone to sin?
Now we all have different sin-tendencies, I know, but I can only speak of a few of the more obvious ones. I suppose it is possible that a person with a problem with a “gang history” could somehow get excited about his or her old life…but I don’t see it that way. I see the depiction of the life being authentic enough to get the idea, while not glorifying the lifestyle in any way.

None of the main characters engages in smoking, drinking or drug use. The references to drugs are never exalted, and the women in the movie are all modestly dressed throughout, except for one scene toward the end where a woman’s shirt was possibly a little too low cut. I am also one of the more conservative people I know in the area of modesty…so many people may not even notice.

Courageous does not glorify sin nor does it provide temptation for someone to sin. In contrast to the other “Christian-value” movie which is being marketed for now, (Soul Surfer), Courageous offers no feeding of the flesh. Carnal minded men and women will not find satisfaction for their lusts here. To be able to enjoy a movie without having to cover your ears and eyes is rare, and Courageous refreshes the soul in this way.

Is God glorified?
I have wondered on occasion how to truly judge a movie. I wonder if God actually likes any story, where Jesus is not the center; the protagonist; the ultimate victor. It has made me disinterested in even secular stories of success where God is not glorified.

Courageous makes an overt point of being Christ-centered, Bible-directed and God loving. The message of the movie that faith in Christ alone is the only provision for forgiveness of sins is clearly stated. And the “great contradiction” is that this movie attacks the secular view of fatherhood and family by setting the standard for fatherhood based on the Bible. I believe that men and women who are not born-again will enjoy this movie because of the universal Truth contained therein. The biblical principles laid out will resonate in the hearts of people everywhere who want to love their kids more, treat their wife better and lead and protect their family in the best way possible. The hope and prayer of course, is that while some people came just to see a good movie, they will leave with their life changed, with sufficient knowledge to start a reconciled relationship with God through Christ.

Should you go see Courageous? Yes. Please do. Be a good steward of your money and spend it on the advancement of the gospel of Christ (Romans 1:16) by supporting this movie, and the good people who God has gifted to produce such a masterpiece. Buy tickets for friends and relatives, both saved and unsaved, and don’t forget Dad – tickets go on sale June 19, Father’s Day.

Note: We would like to thank our good friend and ministry supporter, Michael Coughlin, for providing this excellent review for our readers. We look forward to bringing you much more information on this wonderful ministry opportunity. Check out our "Courageous Weekend" Outreach, which aims to purchase entire showings of this movie for law enforcement.

Saturday, April 09, 2011

Mission Philippines 2011: Officer Nesbitt

Muscle Shoals Police Officer Lee Nesbitt speaks to Carpenter's House Baptist Church in Calamba City, Philippines March 27, 2011. He trained the PNP in firearms during the Mission Trip

Lee Nesbitt's Testimony from Ten-Four Ministries on Vimeo.

Mission Philippines 2011: Officer Bennett

Tulsa Police Officer Brandon Bennett speaks to Carpenter's House Baptist Church in Calamba City, Philippines March 27, 2011. He led the defensive tactics training during the Mission Trip. Special thanks to Relentless Training for providing excellent training.

Brandon Bennett's Testimony from Ten-Four Ministries on Vimeo.

MLB Outreach 2011

Ten-Four Ministries had the wonderful honor to be asked by Bezeugen Ministries to lead a team of evangelists to the opening weekend of the Tulsa Drillers, the AA affiliate with the Colorado Rockies. The MLB 2011 Outreach has the potential to reach hundreds of thousands for the Gospel.

Bezeugen Ministries partnered with One Million Tracts and Sports Fan Outreach International to send teams to every Major League Stadium between March 31st and April 10th. A custom Gospel Tract was made for each team which included one for the Tulsa Drillers. I have been involved in passing out tracts for some time and I have used a variety of tracts and most of them I consider very good but I must say that the custom tract used for this event was by far the easiest tract to give away. Everyone walking up to me was a fan of the Drillers so when you ask them if they want some "Driller Trivia" just about everyone gladly took one.

It was a great night and hundreds of tracts were passed out. I have some left over and I look forward to going back during the season and for years to come. I have to commend all of the ministries involved for a great idea, concept and execution. God was certainly glorified in their efforts.

You can order your own MLB Tracts here and read about the other outreaches here.