Last Call – Man School is NEXT Wednesday at 6am

Wow, we have 45 men now signed up for next week’s Man School.  That’s awesome.  It’s not too late to sign up.  We are walking through John Eldredge’s “Waking the Dead” book.  It is perhaps his best work and it ties directly into what we did last fall and it ties into the current sermon series.

If you want to join us – or – if you have a friend that needs to come, please leave a comment below and we’ll make sure you have a book for next week.

Please bring $8 cash to reimburse me for your book next Wednesday.  If I get the books before Sunday, I’ll bring what I have to a booth in the lobby and can get you your book early.

Lastly, please pray.  Please lift up this Man School.  Surely, it will be opposed.  We so want God to show up and move among our men.  Prayer is a great invitation (pleading) for His presence.

Go men and LiveUP!

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ManSchool sign up – here’s the latest

ManSchool begins on Wednesday February 6 at 6am.  We will be going through John Eldredge’s book Waking the Dead.  As of 11 am this morning, the following men have signed up…

Josh Reynolds, Rob Deloach (no book needed), Claude Scarbrough, Dee Dunford (no book needed), Jeremy Bond, Phil Staten, Jay Lewis, Leland Taylor, Bill Angles, Ray Honea, Coy Nichols, Ryan Walker, Michael Liscomb, Jeff Brewster, James Harris, Mike Lyons, Bret Crumpton, Jimmy Bone, Rustin Jessup, Jay Hoffstetter, Morris Bryant and Richard Illges.

That is 22 men.

If you don’t see your name on this list and you are planning on coming, please leave a comment below so I can order you a book.  The books are $8 and I will pay for them and ask that you give me $8 in cash.  I will order the books later this week and have them at Church the Sunday before we meet and will have them at the LiveUP booth in the lobby.

I’d like you to have the book and read the first 2 chapters before our first session.

This is going to be a great study and as Jeremy Bond testified today, God is moving through our Wednesday morning men’s ministry.  I hope you will seriously consider making this investment.

Lastly, we have about 110 men on this blog.  If you have a friend at CCC or outside our Church that you think would benefit from joining our group, please get them to sign up for the blog and register for ManSchool.

Y’all have a great week.  Make every effort to LiveUP! to bring glory to Christ.

Richard

Find the quiet…

I love quiet.  It is very good for my soul.  It is one of the reasons I deer hunt – so I can be alone and still in the woods especially as the morning light comes upon me.  God speaks in silence.

But our culture is addicted to noise – TV’s, iPod’s, iPad’s, radio, XM Satellite Radio, Pandora – it seems noise is all around us permeating our souls, banging on our souls, begging for attention.  Loud TVs are a pet peeve of mine.  This generation of kids is addicted to noise, media, texting, twitter, instagram, etc.  Noise, busyness, connection, activity.  The sound of silence makes your kids nervous.  That’s not good.

I encourage you to find the quiet.  When you find it, you’ll probably find the Lord.   He’s out there looking for a home.  Embrace the quiet.  Turn off the TV and just in the quiet with your wife.  See what happens.

I read this today and it drives the point home…

I think the devil has made it his business to monopolize on three elements: noise, hurry, crowds. If he can keep us hearing radios, gossip, conversation, or even sermons, he is happy. But he will not allow quietness… Let us resist the devil in this by avoiding noise as much as we can, purposefully seeking to spend time alone, facing ourselves in the Word…Satan is aware of where we find our strength. May he not rob us!

Jim Elliot, Shadow of the Almighty, 112-113

PS – about 10 men have signed up for ManSchool and sent me a comment on the blog reserving a book.  Talk this up.  Sign up.

LiveUP!

Waking the Dead — are you coming to ManSchool?

ManSchool is about 3 weeks away – Wednesday February 6 at 6am at the church.  We are done with the teaching at 7am and then break to small groups for 20-30 minutes.

ARE YOU IN ?  I am excited to dive into this material with you.

We will be going through John Eldredge’s excellent work, Waking the Dead.

We can order books for $8.  I need to know if you are coming and want a book.  If so – please respond to this post.

Attached below is a brief chapter by chapter summary.

Part I Seeing our Way Clearly

Chapter 1 – Arm Yourselves

Life is hard. In order to properly understand our lives, we must have the correct perspective of the context in which our lives occur. That context is war. Satan and the forces of darkness are making war against God and the forces of life, and mankind is at the center of the battle. We will need to fight for our lives.

Chapter 2 – The Eyes of the Heart

Jesus taught in parables, as opposed to propositional truth, in order to speak to the heart.

Through story, we learn the Eternal Truths: First, things are not what they seem. Second, this is a world at war. Third, we have a crucial role to play in the story.

Chapter 3 – The Heart of All Things

Eldredge argues from Scripture that the heart is central to the Christian life (Deut. 6:5, 1 Sam 16:7, Lk 12:34, Prov 3:5, etc.). Thus it follows that the Enemy wages war chiefly against a man’s heart. Without our hearts, we cannot have the life Jesus promised.

Part II The Ransomed Heart

Chapter 4 – Ransomed and Restored

Here Eldredge makes a central argument for his understanding of man’s heart. He speaks out against the teaching that as Christians our hearts are “desperately wicked” and we are nothing more than “sinners saved by grace.” Rather, he says, Christ has transformed each of us who follow Him and has given us a new heart (Ezek 36:26). Through this new, good heart, we are able to intimately know and follow God. Eldredge also discusses extensively the centrality of the Resurrection, as opposed to the Crucifixion, in the Christian faith, and that through this we see that Christ’s work was primarily about restoration and life, not simply forgiveness.

Chapter 5 – The Glory Hidden in Your Heart

Because our hearts have been made good – because we have been transformed by Christ – our truest selves are now different. A war within us still wages with the sinful flesh, but that is not who we really are. Rather, we bear the image of God, we are adopted into the family of God, and we are meant to reflect His glory to the world in a way unique to each of us.

Part II The Four Streams

Chapter 6 – Walking with God

The Four Streams are the means by which we as Christians experience the life that Christ has offered us and come fully alive. The first of these is Discipleship – not simply the programmatic training that has become common in most churches, but an intimate walk with God that comes through wisdom and revelation. Through learning and applying Scripture, we learn wisdom. We experience revelation by listening to God’s voice as He provides specific guidance for our lives.

Chapter 7 – Receiving God’s Intimate Counsel

The second stream is Counseling. In order to come fully alive, we need to understand our own stories in which we are living. The world will throw lies at us, trying to get us to believe things about ourselves that are not true or no longer true in Christ. Through wise counsel offered from God or from others who follow Him, we are enabled to see our lives with clarity and truth.

Chapter 8 – Deep Restoration

The third stream is Healing. Some wounds are so deep that even the proper perspective of counseling is of no help. For these things we need Christ to heal us deeply in order to experience the life He offers. We begin this process by inviting Him into the area of brokenness and asking Him to heal it.

Chapter 9 – Spiritual Warfare: Fighting for Your Heart

The final stream is Warfare. We have a real Enemy and he is actively engaged in destroying us. We cannot escape this assault and so we must confront it. We begin by renouncing lies about ourselves and others that “feel” true but are not, according to Scripture. We break those agreements and refuse to make others. In addition, we actively pray against the forces of the Enemy, claiming the authority that is given to us in Christ.

Chapter 10 – Setting Hearts Free: Integrating the Four Streams

Fighting for our hearts involves incorporating all four of the Streams into our lives. Most areas in our lives are not dealt with simply by engaging one Stream, and we need to listen to God for guidance on how to pursue life. Also, we are meant to engage in the Streams with others, offering to them the same freedom and life for their hearts that we have experienced.

Part IV The Way of the Heart

Chapter 11 – Fellowships of the Heart

The Four Streams are practiced in the context of a small community. We need to intimately know one another. This will be strongly opposed by the Enemy so we should not be surprised by conflict. An intimate community will be messy and difficult at times, but we must be prepared to fight for it if we want to experience the life Jesus offers.

Chapter 12 – Like the Treasures of the Kingdom

“Above all else, guard your heart” (Prov. 4:23). Our hearts are our most valuable assets. Jesus does promise life to the full, but in order to experience it we must learn to fiercely guard our hearts and to fight for freedom. In caring for our own hearts, we nourish our relationship with God, build up resources to care for the hearts of others, and defend ourselves against the attacks of the Enemy. We care for our hearts by doing the things that individually refresh us physically and emotionally and that restore our vision of who God is and how He is at work.

ManSchool & Carver Banquet

Guys – we’ve got a busy February coming and it will be here before you know it.  We have the marriage retreat (please pray about coming).  I’ve got a good marriage but I want a great one – one that will honor the Lord, one where I can learn to die to my self and serve her in a way that honors Christ.  So we’re going and looking forward to it.  I hope you will too.

The Carver banquet is Saturday February 16th.  That’s soon!  We’ve got a ton to do – planning the meal, the decorations, the awards, building our team, etc.  You’ll be getting an email from Michael Wood next week asking for volunteers to serve, host, cook, set up, clean up, etc.  It’s a fun day and very rewarding.  If you serve and are a part of this, you will be blessed.

Lastly, ManSchool is starting back in less than a month on Wednesday February 6th at 6am.  We are going to walking through John Eldredge’s book Waking the Dead.  I think it is John’s best work.  It ties in perfectly with last fall’s “No matter the cost” but it goes deeper.  If you will pray your way through this book, open your heart to the Lord and genuinely desire a deeper walk, this book will bless you.  It is a great read but it is deep.  You can blow through it like a novel and put it back on your shelf – or – you can go slow through it and soak it in and God will use it mightily.  I’ve read it 2-3 times and frankly, I am eager to “go slow” through it.

We had about 30 men consistently last fall in ManSchool.  We’d like more men this time.  This is a powerful book and our community of men is powerful.  You will be blessed if you invest the time.

Step up.  LiveUP!

January 1…what are you going to do? What’s your Egypt?

Happy New Year.  What are you going to do with it? 

Have you been out of shape and vowed year after year to do something about it?  What are you going to do?

Have you struggled consistently with pornography?  What are you going to do?

Has money been a constant problem?  Do you need to make some cuts and tough choices and finally address this issue?  What are you going to do?

Have you allowed your marriage to drift, grow cold, become distant?  What are you going to do?

What’s your Egypt?  Where’s your bondage?  Where’s your slavery?

What are you going to do about it?

 

Now’s the time gentlemen.  Today’s the day.  Throw this at the feet of the Lord – the Great Liberator.  Let Him free you.  God is faithful to save.  He hears His people when they cry out to Him, when they are suffering.  When we suffer, when we materially suffer, physically suffer or emotionally suffer, He hears us and He delivers His people from slavery.  He brings them out of their Egypt.

What’s your Egypt?  Give it over to God.  Make today “the day” that the course begins to change, when the wind starts to blow in another direction.

Men, what are you going to do about it?  It is time to act.  Give it to God and then do something about it.  LiveUP.

MANSCHOOL Question – what is on your heart for ManSchool in February?  Where do we need to go?  What’s the Lord telling you that we need to pursue?  Leave a comment and we’ll go from there.