Friday, January 30, 2009


Congratulations to Pastor Mike on being the correct comment chosen as our winner from Tuesday's trivia. Thank you to everyone who participated - we got some great verses on the Trinity. He is now up to $12 in prizes to be used towards any Nebraska Youth Ministry event or piece of merchandise.

I had a wonderful final morning at Trinity Bible College, having the chance to speak in chapel. It was an excellent service and I so appreciated everything President Strom and his staff did to make my DYD friends and I welcome. The picture above is the final class we facilitated, something about dealing with Culture in our world today. You might see some NE students in the photo.

Here's the trivia for today. Trinity Bible College is near HWY 281 in North Dakota. Coming home was basically a 6 hour drive straight south. Which NE city will be the first that I pass through on my way which contains an Assembly of God church (or two, hint, hint). Happy Searching. Have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Thursday - Testimonies - Arjay Johnson

This is Arjay Johnson, youth pastor of North Shore Assembly of God in Hastings. I've been leading worship there every once in a while and last week the pastor told an amazing story. They have an incredible youth facility in a warehouse downtown called the PULSE. In the back is an old machine elevator, used to transport vehicles during World War II. While using it to move equipment, some people in the youth ministry accidentally broke it. The estimate came back at almost $4,000, which is quite a bit more than Arjay had in his budget. A few weeks later, after the work was done, the owner of the building came back to the pastor with a final receipt of less than $400. God had changed the bill to 1/10 of the original price. We believe it is because God's favor is on Arjay and the Pulse and they doing things to please God and find favor with Him.

Below is the gym at Trinity. We've got a few girls on the basketball team which is doing well. I had a chance to check my skills with these college kids, and I think I've still got it!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Wednesday - Leader's Corner

This is a picture of a few DYD's giving a class about how to prepare for your first role in ministry. Mark is from South Dakota, Darin is from Kansas, and Twyla is from North Dakota.

Matthew 10:24,25 - 1). Jesus sets down a precedent for the relationship between students and their leaders. (v.24) He stated that a student is not above his teacher, or a servant above his master. Now in the course of life, a former student/servant could rise to become a leader of a greater influence and position than their mentor. But even then, they should look to their mentors with respect and a teachable spirit. We should learn to respect our mentors for a lifetime, and remember that no matter how far we’ve come, we still have much to learn. 2). The student should outdo the former exploits of the teacher. (v.25) A teacher should not just raise up a student to the same level where they have been, but should aspire to help them achieve even more. This is partly because a student can learn from the mentors mistakes and avoid those same pitfalls on their path.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Tuesday - Bible Trivia

Sorry I'm late, but I'm still getting it in on Tuesday! 

I'm up at Trinity Bible College in North Dakota. Whatever you might have heard bad about this school was wrong - it's a great place. I'm sure I'll be talking about it for a while. This is a pic of the Chapel, and the guitarist in the middle is Joel Sandoz, from St. Paul, NE.

Congratulations to LARISSA for being our correct comment chosen as the winner from our trivia last Friday. She must be up to like $40 or so (let me know if you would), I didn't have time to look back and see. Here's our trivia: Can you quote a verse in the Bible that speaks of the Trinity? 

See ya tomorrow, with more pics and stuff from Trinity

Monday, January 26, 2009

Monday - Life's Lessons

Saturday, my sons had a basketball game. We played hard, but lost 7-6. A dad from the opposing team was sitting on the stands opposite us and he was constantly yelling at his son. A dad near me was noticing and every once in a while, he'd yell out to the guy to stop. At one point, the refs called a foul on his son, and the man across the court stood up and said, "What?" real loud. The man next to me yelled back at him, 'Sit down', with attitude. The YMCA lady had to come out to the court and get everyone's attention, reminding them that this was a sport to train kids and angry parents would not be tolerated.

Kim and I remarked about how crazy that moment was. Our kids aren't the stars of the team, but we're still not yelling out at them to get better constantly, embarassing ourselves in front of the other parents. On the way out, the man who had been sitting next to me was walking beside me, and just to strike up a conversation, I said, 'What about that dad across the court?' He responded back and we talked for a minute or so.

On the way to car, Kim asked why I had said that? I told her I was just making small talk, but she said that it sounded like I was agreeing with him for shouting back at the man. Suddenly, I realized that she was right - I had done what I encourage our students never to do, compromised to fit in. It was subtle, but true. If we encourage our students to live right for God in all things, we've got to set a good example and do the same ourselves.

Friday, January 23, 2009


Hello again. Tonight is my son Ryan's Sleepover Birthday Party. We're going to have pizza, and go the YMCA in Hastings for Water Slides. It should be a blast!

Congratulations to Pastor Mike for being the correct comment chosen randomnly as our winner for the Trivia on Tuesday. He is now up to $10 in prize money. John the Baptist was the character referenced by Terry Allen at the youth leaders retreat. Great job.

The picture above is a popular attraction in NE. Presidents have visited there, movies have been made there, and my family has gone there a few times as well. Name the attraction and the city it is located near.

Have a great weekend. I'm leading worship Sunday morning in Hastings, and Sunday night in Grand Island at Northridge. Should be a lot of fun.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Thursday - Testimonies

My son Ryan is now 10

Jamie Mockry is the youth/children's leader for our church in McCook, NE. That city is in the far southwest corner of our state, about an hour south of North Platte. Jamie works with the food service at the local college, and helps provide food at their sporting arena. He got his students involved in that this past year, and they donated their money earned to STL and other home missions. As a group of about 10 students, together they brought in over $7,000. What a great job of raising funds for missions and working together as a team!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Wednesday - Leader's Corner - 'Keep Saving Me'

1 Kings 21:4 - 'Ahab went home, sullen and angry, because Naboth the Jezreelite said 'no'. He lay on his bed sulking and refusing to eat.'

Have you been there, frustrated with leadership and ministry, sitting on your bed, wishing you'd entered a different career field? I'm with you, I understand. Ahab was there too. Unfortunately for him, it was a pretty stupid reason. The truth is, though, most of the time when I'm sullen or sulking, it's a stupid reason as well. 

Leader's have to be tough skinned. Everything is not always going to go our way. In the absence of challenges, you also have the absence of courage. God uses challenges to make us better leaders. During those times of feeling like we want to give up, we need to rely upon Him. Truth is, it might be a stupid reason we feel bad, and God might intentionally have us there to make us better.

Here's a song that encourages me in those times, by Josh Wilson, 'Savior Please'...
I tried to be so tough
But I'm just not strong enough 
I can't do this alone, God I need you to hold onto me
I tried to be good enough
But I'm nothing without your love
Savior please, keep saving me 

Go to my myspace profile to hear this song:

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Tuesday - Bible Trivia

                            Largest chocolate cake I've ever seen

Congratulations to THE VIEW FROM MY PICTURE WINDOW for being the correct comment chosen as our winner from Friday's trivia. He/She just won $2 towards any NYM piece of merchandise or event. He/She is now up to $16.50. That's going to come in handy soon...

Todays trivia: This past weekend, I was at a youth leaders retreat in South Dakota. Terry Allen, DYD of Tennessee spoke about being strong in ministry, even when going through tough times. The first night, he spoke about a character in the Bible that had done just that. I know that many of you may not have been there, so this will be a guess, but which Bible character was he referring to (hint - he had a mean appetite):

A) Jonah
B) John the Baptist
C) Job

See ya tomorrow. Enjoy the inauguration

Monday, January 19, 2009

Monday - Life Lessons

This is a picture of Tyler Tufte, a Jr. High youth leader from Sioux Falls, South Dakota. I saw him this past weekend at the South Dakota Momentum leaders retreat in Mitchell. What a great time connecting with everyone there, especially my DYD friends of Mark Entzminger and Terry Allen.

Tyler was great to interact with. As soon as I saw him, I remembered him from somewhere. It took me awhile to figure it out, but last year, he was a student at North Central in Minneapolis. I had sat in a class where students had to preach messages and I just happened to be there when he was speaking. I remembered that I thought he had done a great job. As we were sitting next to each other at dinner, he told me that his sister was an intern in Bellevue with the Master's Commission. What a weird coincidence - that was my home church. I used to be the MC director myself, and I knew Krystle from working at different events. Lastly, as were preparing for Terry's opening message, he leaned over and told me that I had given a message about Jr. High ministry which had been a big help to him. I couldn't remember doing that at NCU, but he had found it online from the leadership workshops at National Fine Arts this summer. 

Wow, what an encouragement. Sometimes, you do those little things (workshops, teaching, classes, etc.) and don't realize how much of an impact they can have on someone's life. It's good to hear about times when they the things we do help someone. Take some time today to thank someone who has done something to help you in your ministry.

Friday, January 16, 2009


Congratulations to LARISSA for again being the chosen correct comment to win our prize. I love the name Ebenezer, though I've never met anyone with that name. There is a church in Grand Island called that. Sometimes, just to tease people around me I don't know, I call my kids names like that in public. I get some funny looks at those times.

Here's the trivia for today: I love Christian radio. Music for God is always better than music meant for anything else. We have a Christian radio station in NE called KJLT, which stands for King Jesus Lives Today. Can you guess what major city along the interstate this radio station is based in? Have fun!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Thursday - Testimonies

Last week, I spoke at Rock Solid, the youth ministry at Christ Place church in Lincoln. It was a great time being with Pastor Bruce and his students and I'm excited to work with their new senior pastor, Rick Lorimer, who comes to Nebraska in February. 

In the middle of our service, Pastor Bruce asked a student to come to the front he called DC. She had been on a missions trip to the Sudan for many months and the youth ministry had supported her. Now, she was ready to move again and pursue more ministry. At her last service, Bruce let her say a few words and then he asked everyone who had relationship with her to come forward and pray for her. I was so impressed when almost 50 people gathered around her to pray. Before they prayed though, Bruce asked her to look around, see how many people loved her, and how many people she had touched while in Lincoln. It was a really special moment - we tend to have more impact in people's lives than we ever imagined.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Wednesday - Leaders Corner

1 Samuel 14:35 'Saul built an altar to the Lord'; 1 Samuel 15:12 'Samuel got up and went to meet Saul, but he was told 'Saul has gone to Carmel. There he has set up a monument is his own honor'

Yesterday, Mark Batterson was talking more about having a ministry that endures and he mentions these two verses. How interesting that King Saul started off right, focusing on God. But early on in his ministry, the focused switched from God's glory to his own. Do we ever find ourselves building ministries as monuments to ourselves, as opposed to building something that honors God? 

- Do we make decisions after seeking after God's will, or just assuming that we already know?
- Do we still serve in 'behind the scene' roles, where no one will applaud when we are finished?
- When we are finished, do we immediately go to others to see 'how we did'?
- Do we empower others to excell at things that we are already excellent at?
- Can we worship with others, or are we always thinking about the next thing we need to do, or how we could do what we are already doing better?

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Tuesday - Bible Trivia

Hello everyone. I am thoroughly enjoying the minister's retreat in North Platte. Right now, Mark Batterson is doing some questions and answers for our people, before he leaves this afternoon. Tonight, Doug Clay will be us through Thursday. He's the General Treasurer of the AG so that should be awesome as well. 

Incidentally, I'm really starting to get better at running sound and video.

Congratulations to THE VIEW FROM MY PICTURE WINDOW once again, for being the chosen correct comment from our trivia on Friday. He's doing a great job and is going to have all kinds of treats from Nebraska Youth Ministries, with her winnings. 

Today, what book in the Bible is the name EBENEZER found? That is the name of Mark Batterson's coffee shop in Washington DC and it doesn't have anything to do with Scrooge. 

See ya tomorrow.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Monday - Life Lessons - Tithing

A couple of weeks ago, I had the chance to minister at a certain church. It wasn't far away so I was able to stay at home the night before, and just drive to the church in the morning. That night, I had one of the worst nights of sleep I've ever had. I tossed and turned relentlessly. Many times, I got up and got a drink of water or tried to go the bathroom, or even tried to pray, but nothing was helping me get back to sleep. Overall, I only got about 90 minutes of sleep that evening.

The next morning I went to church and fought through the tiredness to minister the best that I could. It was a wonderful service and God moved in a powerful way. He used me to do some great things in that church. As I was driving home, fighting to stay awake, I started thinking about the fight against my tired state. It was then that I remembered that we fight not against flesh and blood, but against spiritual forces in high places. 

Sometimes we forget that there is a spiritual realm all around us and we have an enemy warring against our souls. When we are in the ministry, we become the target of attacks. Some are subtle, some are apparent, some are just annoyances to hurt our ministry, like trying to deny us or health or sleep. Either way, it's important for us to stay strong, stand in the power of the Spirit, and press on.

Friday, January 9, 2009


Hello everyone! Congratulations to both of our correct comments from Tuesday's Bible Trivia. You TIED! So you both get the two dollar prize. I can't keep track of all these winners! I'll check back to see where you are at, unless you know, but great job.

Here's the trivia for today. We have a new pastor in the district named Dominick Warne. He is leading worship at our minister's retreat in North Platte next week. What city does he pastor in?

A) Thedford
B) Fremont
C) Omaha
D) McCook
E) Chadron

Happy guessing. Hopefully, I'll see you next week, if you're a minister

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Thursday - Testimonies

Last night I had the chance to speak at Rock Solid, Lincoln Christplace's youth group with Bruce Riddle as youth pastor. It was a great time promoting STL for 2009. Rich Skerbitz and the group from Milford Assembly of God came and joined us as well. It's exciting to see what God is doing with our groups in that area. 

A few weeks ago I was back in Bellevue for the holidays. That is where I was pastoring before I came to Grand Island to be in the district office. I was in church on Dec 21st, when they were celebrated the completion of their mortgage loan on the wonderful facility they built about 20 years ago. It's the largest AG building in the state, and we are going to have our Fall Youth Convention their this coming November. Over 5 million dollars was faithfully paid out from people over the years to bring them to the mortgage burning ceremony. 

Pastor Gary Hoyt asked all of those who had been around the church the entire time they had been working together on a building fund, to stand up,  and about 50 people stood up, out of maybe 800. It was a small percentage of the whole that were there that morning, but I looked and saw the faces of people who I had known since the early days of when I had started to be involved at BCC. Faithful people, staying put, giving over and over again, for the dream that God had given them. Being in an airforce community, many families had to come and go, but these few stayed true. Because of their faithfulness, God led them into 'the promised land'. What an incredible day that must have been for them to see all those years of work and giving come to completion. 

Dreaming big is something we GET to do as a Christian. Faithfulness and Committment are required to see it through. The road will be long and difficult at times, but the results will be glorious in the end. 

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Wednesday - Leaders Corner

                             My daughter singing on Christmas Eve

Last night, my boys had their 2nd basketball practice. They were wearing some old shoes and sliding all over the court. We're going to get them some new shoes tonight. I use to hate when that would happen to me as a kid.

1 Kings 14:21 - 'Rehoboam son of Solomon was king in Judah. He was 41 yrs. old when he became king, and he reigned seventeen years in Jerusalem, the city the Lord had chosen out of all the tribes of Israel in which to put His name. His mother's name was Naamah; she was an Ammonite.

This passage is quite informative. It lists Rehoboams 1) age, 2) years of service, 3) experience, 4) family, and 5) the significance of his position. All of these things make up a great checklist to look at when viewing potential candidates for ministry positions. This is also a great list to look at for yourself and help gauge where you are in terms of a leadership profile. It might seem like tedious, detail work to gather these bits of info in resumes and so forth, but it's another important part of ministry, and something we see over and over again as the books of Kings list the kings of Israel and Judah.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Tuesday - Bible Trivia

          The candy spread in the leaders lounge at FYC 08

Congratulations to LARISSA for being the correct comment chosen as our winner from the trivia on Friday. Tony Anderson is the senior pastor of North Shore Assembly of God in Hastings. Great job. You are now up to $6 in prize money. Thank you to everyone who contributed and we have another challenge for you today. 

This is the first full week of the new year, and it's a great time to prepare for a year of excitement serving God. The Assemblies of God always designates this week as a week of fasting and prayer. Can you name 3 individuals in the Bible who fasted for a certain amount of time, refraining from food to be with God?

I'm off to a meeting with other pastors in the Tri Cities. Then my boys have basketball practice tonight. See ya tomorrow!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Monday - Life Lessons - Tithing

                                   The new pond at our campgrounds

Hello everyone. I hope that you had a fabulous weekend. I know that I did. I loved all the bowl games and the NFL playoffs. I also had the chance to lead worship in Hastings at Northshore Assembly of God.

Pastor Tony talked about putting first things first, and one of his points was on tithing. Tithing is a Biblical principle where the first 10% of all that we earn belongs to God. We give it to God first, before we spend our money anywhere else (Malachi 3:8-12. Malachi is the last book in the Old Testament) He encouraged the church to start the new year off by tithing.

This is a big step for many people. But then he sweetened the deal. He gave them this promise: for all those who would take him up on this challenge, at the end of the week, if God didn't bless them and their house as HE promised, they'd return the money back to them. Then he said, 'You won't get that offer on any television ad.' Ha, ha.

How interesting, to test God and see if He will be true to His word! I can't wait to hear all the things that God does this week for their church. Read the passage referenced above and you'll understand where I'm coming from.

Friday, January 2, 2009


Great job to View from my picture window. We had a trick question on Tuesday. I would have taken any comments as winners. Obviously, the calendar we are using now isn't necessarily the same one in circulation throughout the history of the Bible. Way to take a chance and get your .50 cents.

Now, for today: I am leading worship on Sunday morning at a great church in NE. The pastor is Tony Anderson. Where is this church located?:

A) Hastings
B) North Platte
C) Omaha
D) Scottsbluff
E) Casper

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Thursday - Testimonies

Hello everyone, and Happy New Year! I'm looking forward to 2009. I'm also rooting for Iowa, Nebraska, and Penn State today (in honor of my brother in law Bill, from Ohio). 

This past year was a great year in many ways. One of the most significant involves our campgrounds in Lexington. Many of you may have been there for one of our camps in the past. If you are interested in attending this next year, as a student or volunteer worker, go to for more details.

A few years back, our campgrounds were dilapidated and in serious debt. With some work and new management, we've turned things around. We are predicted to finish with the lowest amount of debt in years, and possibly even come out on top. We've updated many of the things on site and had some of our highest numbers in attendance at the campgrounds ever. What an incredible year, when just a few years ago, we were wondering if we should sell it to be good stewards. Praise God for what He did in 2008. I'd love to hear about a big testimony from you last year as well!