June 26, 2017

“I don’t like bullies. I don’t care where they come from.” A Motto from Captain America that will change your life!

At the end of this video, listen to the line that makes this blog post powerful for those who step on the little guys (or little girls)!

 

 “Give justice to the poor and the orphan; uphold the rights of the oppressed and the destitute.” Psalm 82:3 (NLT)

I have watched the movie, Captain America: The First Avenger, more times than I can count, and the main character and superhero, Captain Steve Rogers, never backs down from a bully and fight, sometimes at his own detriment, saying “I can do this all day.” He keeps getting back up time and time again even with blood spewing down his shirt out of his mouth, depicted as the fool who will not go down without fighting time and time again. I admire his-never-back-down attitude.

Rogers constantly seeks to serve his country in the allied war against Germany. He continues to be denied by doctors to pass the military physical (so he can inevitably go to war), using several fake names and home states in the process. His small stature eventually transforms into the muscle-bound Captain America, and his dreams come forward to go to war. When finally successful to attain an approved appointment with the health clearing exam to join the military, a doctor behind the super soldier campaign asks Rogers, “So you want to kill Nazis?” He then responds admirably, “I don’t want to kill anyone. I don’t like bullies. I don’t care where they come from.” Through a series of tests at boot camp, Rogers takes risks for the “little guys,” the underdog you cannot help but root for as an audience member.

My cowriter and close friend, Tim the Upbeat Retired Guy, believes that I write too critically of others in my life sometimes on this blog and then in my book, One Flight Short of a Cuckoo’s Nest. I must personally admit I have never really liked bullies (guys and girls included). I do not really care where that bully comes from. I am not one to give a free pass to any leader who uses authority to push other people around. The range includes all kinds of individuals from all walks of life, politicians, academic institutional deans, stewards, and presidents, and perhaps even spotlight ministers. Like Captain Rogers, I am not looking to hurt anyone or ruin someone’s reputation. I will simply not tolerate those who bully others around.

An example in my life comes to mind: While in high school, I wrestled on the 2000 Alabama State High School 6A Championship team. Our team grew close in extraordinary ways, and we really had each others’ backs, all for one, and one for all! When one person stood in trouble or in the line of fire, we all did. No one messed with our girlfriends or with each one of us. We especially had no tolerance for a guy disrespecting or bullying a girl. There is just no room for that on my watch! While in the hall one day, one of my best and closest friends, Elizabeth Sanders, was picked on and degraded verbally by her boyfriend, Patrick, at her locker, whispering condescending comments into her ear while she frowned to the point of tears. Her boyfriend was a real jerk, and I never really liked him anyway. In fact, had I been the man I am now, I would have asked Elizabeth out when she was single. I told her boyfriend to back off and stand down. My good friend, brother in Christ, and wrestling team mate, Jonathan Dobberman, stood there by my side when I faced Patrick. Patrick responded, “Who is going to make me?” I said, “Me and my wrestling army!” That was the end of the conversation. He walked away, and with a grateful hug for me around my shoulders and slight smile on her face, Elizabeth quietly said, “Thank you!” What can I say? Some of us have bigger mouths than others. And Patrick even later that day apologized. Those who stand for what is right often reap the rewards (and sometimes the costs) for doing so.

Where am I going here? Scripturally as soldiers and warriors of Christ, we are not meant to back down for a just cause as men of God. We are meant to defend the cause of the orphan, the disabled, the widow, the homeless, and those who cannot stand up for themselves in any way.

I recently have dwelled on yesterday’s excuses, reasoning, and mind doubts of why I so often lack to take action today, not against bullies, but moving forward with life. Yesterday is gone and so are those excuses!

We excuse ourselves from the hard struggles, challenges, adversities, and tasks in life and remain okay with that. Well, I am not okay with a subpar existence, and I will never be okay with a bully. While words written hurt the bully who takes action, the narrative of God’s soldiers triumph every time. When you play the political game to drown one who suffers, I cannot simply stand by and let that go. I will write. I will fight. And I will speak out.

I don’t want to kill or hurt anyone. I just don’t like bullies. I don’t care where they come from.

The-First-Avenger -Captain-America-movie-poster-(2011)-picture-MOV_f134343e_b

Social Media: Blessing or Curse? Opportunity or Consequence?….the generational gap.

I think this video accurately shows that social media is NOT A FAD. Social Media is in fact existent as it has and will continue to CHANGE the future forever as we know it. You simply join in or are (be) left behind. At least that is how I view it.

I have heard of people losing their jobs with information provided on social media networks. Unless extracurricular activities clearly violate laws (i.e. stealing, drinking under age, etc.) or extreme moral dilemmas (i.e. adultery, indecent exposure, discrediting an employer through libel, etc.), then under the first amendment rights, I believe what people want to share and say should not matter. If the personal messages and expressions on social media networks do not affect one’s performance in the work environment, then who cares? These opinions and viewpoints are one area where you will see a very distinct generational difference. Someone my age may not take this so seriously (those 35 years and under who embrace the social media revolution) whereas older generations (35 years and older) take offense to any open message, for better or worse, misinterpreted. Instead of working through the matter, they just get mad without understanding social media culture and technological change that ensues, example in point, those below.

As I offended some family members with my comments on this picture (for individuals who did not understand sports innuendos), this is a classic example of how users read and interpret messages differently than others. Some female readers unfamiliar with NFL football and championships known as the Super Bowl may not realize these college students resemble the quarterback of the San Francisco 49ers. They are participating in an example of his stature after big play success, “Kaepernicking,” hence Colin Kaepernick’s last name, the quarterback of the 49ers. I wrote “losers” on the image below, some unfamiliar with the sports world thought I was referring to those in the picture instead of acknowledging the losers of the Super Bowl game. The message was misinterpreted by those unaware of the largest game in the sports world, much like my interests in the Oscars I suppose. I just do not care who wins the worst movies of the year.

Another instance includes a volunteer experience for me still fresh in my mind here in Atlanta, Georgia. Two ministry leaders (a wife and husband couple team) approached me to assist in their social media marketing platform where I would bring my expertise to speak to the unreached target youth and twenty-something’s, professional skills I happen to possess much knowledge in. I should have known challenges would arise when the minister claimed that the increasing popular trend of Pinterest were a complete waste of time, despite the statistics, a sign of obvious lack of knowledge and incredible ignorance on his part. The number of daily Pinterest users has increased by 145% since January 2012 as the fastest growing social media outlet in the world. Pinterest generates over 4x as much revenue per click (attributable to first touch) as Twitter and 27% more revenue per click than Facebook. 81% of U.S. online consumers trust information and advice from Pinterest. But remember the old man said that these trends were a waste of time (that older than 35 years generational difference). While the ministry already had a Twitter account and Facebook with the minimal requirements, there was much work to be done; however the couple insisted on proofreading every message I posted. In other words, they micromanaged what they originally recruited me to do. They did not want to revamp their social media platform. They simply wanted another body to follow their commands.

Eventually, the husband minister had me surfing YouTube for videos with his sermons, and his wife had me developing Power Point presentations on Superheroes, yes Superheroes, nothing of which related to social media or public relations. I tweeted the following, “I feel like a glorified secretary” that day on my personal Twitter account, and then the next day they were offended and angered. That was one of my last straws with some who simply never understood social media and never wanted to listen to someone who did through a graduate education of Communication from Auburn University. The generational gap of change remains evident once again.

And finally, for a more hysterical example, I wrote my top ten tweets on lame excuses of why girls will not go on a date. I recently took someone on a date here in Atlanta, but not much came of it. In fact, I forgot the whole ordeal long after I posted/tweeted the “Top 10 Lamest Excuses from Girls” when asked for a date. While this particular female joined my friends’ list with her own initiative and request, she kept a close watch on both my Facebook and Twitter through her own cyber stalker ways. She automatically assumed every Top 10 tweet was about her when in fact only one was with no names mentioned. These were excuses I recorded over the last ten years, really lame but funny. It is amazing what someone says when an individual does not want to go on a date. Honesty usually works best as a first choice for those who conjecture excuses through creative responses.

This girl called really late one night in tears, crying. I was already asleep and thought something was legitimately wrong. Her feelings were hurt over the misinterpreted tweets. I said, “I’m sorry,” as I tried to hold back the laughter. When she finally got off the phone after her scripted tirade, I laughed so hard, falling onto the floor from my bed. Someone recently told me, “People often get angry when they face truth they do not want to hear or be reminded of.” I think that is often true with social media (blog included), but I also believe some people just take small trivial things way too seriously, i.e. social media pictures on Facebook of included “Kaepernicking.” Sometimes a tweet is just a tweet. That is all it is.

I do not think social media is a bad thing. The promotional tools and reconnections with old friends have done wonders for both my personal writing and photography. I believe there is a clear generational gap with technology though, especially with elders who do not understand the jokes, the personal messages, and youth trends. These demographics often seek to understand, but some still pretend to ignore the statistics when presented. If you wonder what the terms Web 2.0, now Web 3.0, or even blogosphere mean, then you simply exist on social media, but you might fall short to truly understanding the global image of. The video at the beginning of this blog entry could perhaps help you begin to understand the Bigger Picture of social media.

The truth is The Big Picture on this planet that social media brings. Why get mad about it? Why ignore it? Just let it be, and let young professionals give advice on something we grew up with in the college age. We know it as adolescents, teenagers, and twenty-something’s. It was not a band wagon we jumped once everyone started talking about the revolution. We were and still are that revolution of technological change!

We Are Human, and Fear God Only – Holy reminders from a friend.

My friend, Andrew Mannheimer, who I did a special blog series previous this year with his Hip Hop music videos always brings to light the revelation of truth as it pertains to his relationship with God, much like the mirror of his own music expression.

I once asked him about a famous New York Times best-selling author by the name of Donald Miller (author of Blue like Jazz), “How did he write all these books and publish them nationwide?” Andrew’s response remained simple, “He’s just a man, James…human. Whatever he is capable of, you are clearly capable of as well.”

I think we forget, I included, that famous and accomplished people are in fact just human. Some people are famous when they might not even have talent of any sort, maybe because they are pretty, if that is even considered a talent.

A couple of years ago I further spoke with Andrew about my fear of the unknown….perhaps something about the real world after graduate school at Auburn University. Again he stated, “There is nothing to fear but God. When you fear earthly matters, you block God from the light of His glory. I lean into a resource that never reaches depletion: God.”

Andrew is in his mid-twenties, but the truths he expresses are so simple yet amazing. I think Andrew demonstrates that relationships (since he is indeed a great friend), specifically with God, become the most important element in life that matters. We will take our Christian brothers and sisters to heaven, not our stuff.

This past year has been a really weird one. I still remain perplexed at how the end of 2012 fell apart in some ways. God sometimes disguises blessings we do not understand now but later do.

Perhaps 2013 is Our year! It is the year of relationship with God and Cartee! I am not trying to fall into the trap of resolution goals most never follow through, like losing weight for instance. Some go hard for one week and then move on to life as it was before. Sometimes a focus on God is all we need. I feel that Andrew would say something simple like that, a simple truth.

John Piper further reminds the fear of God is the only real fear for the life of a Christian! This is a very short clip…so watch….

Hope in The One Who Comes Next – Poetry by James Cartee

This photograph is just one of many taken in Peru and other areas of South America by creator of this blog, James Cartee. His work is available for view and purchase at the following website: www.jamescartee.smugmug.com

 

Hope in The One Who Comes Next – Poetry by James Cartee

I miss the sound of you
That strikes my heart.
Strings play beautiful symphony music
At the steps of your pace.
I never won with a crush
On the playground
With a wild imagination.
You would not have me
At the end of my pursuit in the chase.
I lost without remorse
For in my heart
I gave it my absolute all;
I gave it my absolute best.
I stand proud today hopeful
In the one who comes next.

With continual struggle of stagnancy
In a new home I loathe,
Even three years after last contact
Through mutual good byes,
You stand and serve
In frequent mindful imagery.
In transition as a partner in presence,
I dream you would alleviate my fallen feelings.
I was wrong to expect such from God
And from you in circumstances beyond control.
Somehow I still feel you lost,
But many choose to play it safe
Without running the risk to take ministry
To a newfound level for thousands.
I shock and shine others in unseen ways
With outgoing boldness unlike most people.
I cannot fathom a lifetime without
Service towards a higher purpose.
We serve in an army of light
For the salvation of the lost,
The plight of the fatherless,
And the next coming of The Christ.
You poisoned me with false words,
And I fell into the bear trap
Of an abyss with no end.
I imagined in a message from God
What would never be.
If only you saw what I see,
Then hearts connect for eternity.
It no longer matters what you want
Because together we serve God
In His timing, in His ways,
And to the very end of our earthly days.
You missed the journey,
And now I gallop into the sunset
With my White Knight,
Unstoppable alone until the end comes.

I miss the sound of you
That strikes my heart.
Strings play beautiful symphony music
At the steps of your pace.
I never won with a crush
On the playground
With a wild imagination.
You would not have me
At the end of my pursuit in the chase.
I lost without remorse
For in my heart
I gave it my absolute all;
I gave it my absolute best.
I stand proud today hopeful
In the one who comes next.

JLC iii, 11/9/12

The Fourth Quarter Win – Poetry by James Cartee

This photograph is just one of many taken in Argentina and other areas of South America by creator of this blog, James Cartee. His work is available for view and purchase at the following website: www.jamescartee.smugmug.com

The Fourth Quarter Win – Poetry by James Cartee

Disappointed at times with my own risks taken,
I stare into the mirror with regrets and doubts
As I refresh my face with splashed water.
God called me here to improve my spirituality,
Yet stagnant I am not able to jump heads in.
I press to all-in extremes with other talents in life.
When home imagery stands still in my mind,
I grow weary, lonely, and slow inside.
Promises in patience strain my tired brain cells.
You mold me into a leader to strive and achieve,
To never settle for less,
And to praise you, praise you, praise you.
I live in the fourth quarter to win the game.
Inch by inch, yard by yard, play by play,
This running back never stops coming forward.
First down after first down,
Jesus serves as my quarterback on this eternal team.
We triumph in this fourth quarter battle every time.
Bring it! Let’s go! Come on!
You cannot bring us down
In any town, on any field, and any moment.
With my Christ strengthened body, mind, and spirit,
I rise and resurrect with the best of character.
I cannot fail. I cannot stumble to the ground.
I leap with sprints towards storms.
I live in the circle of fire.
Solo and alone in Christ within the darkness,
I embrace my purpose in the shadowed clouds
And will not give in no matter the resistance,
The adversity, the barriers, and lack of human energy.
I score the winning touchdown
With my last minute momentum.
Tick tock, I am stopped by no clock,
No field goal block,
Pressure in the second pulls me in
Because with Christ I am unstoppable.
In every play I always win.

JLC iii, 11/1/12

Do Not Have Expectations: No Disappointment Results but Only Joy

 

Our expectations often fall short of our hopes, leading to disappointment, but at the same time, we must give life a chance and people as well. Unfulfilled decisions are not the end of the journey. Our perseverance in patience often brings the best of results and blessings when our expectations go to God. A better process exists that might work for you: do not have any preconceived expectations. In other words, just go with the flow, conscious that God controls what we cannot often grasp. Wisdom comes with realization of this truth. If balance exists between hope and reality and when to experience joy, one must learn to not overstretch expectations no matter the circumstances, even when mental pictures suggest otherwise. Disappointment will more likely not occur. Better yet, joy arises because you never expected something too grandeur to occur. God brings large blessings upon our life when we do not expect him to act in human ways. We sometimes think we know how to play holy. Truth exposed, we have no clue. We should realistically let God play God while we play the role of an acknowledged sinner. Express your wishes to God. Speak your prayer requests into existence. When God answers your prayers, “let Jesus take the wheel” of your car and your life (Carrie Underwood Song).

In recent moments of my own indulgence, I encourage you not to learn this lesson the hard way by frankly doing something stupid and unproductive in your own better judgment. Again do not expect specific things. Sometimes in faith we take the risk of a plunge, hoping for the best, and following where God will have us. Never forget the personal vision for your life even when situations impede your momentum and progress. In silent confidence, press forward to do what we do with God in mind. I truly miss Bob Haggerty, someone who understood that these laid back principles in our lives should not be taken too seriously. That includes not taking ourselves too seriously.

Today our legacies depend on keeping our word. It is very important that you communicate clearly expectations for an individual so all parties know how to move forward alongside each other as a team. Friction is often the result of misunderstanding when painted pictures never come to creation, or taking things too seriously with expectations leads to unnecessary frustration. Sometimes patience brings the best of outcomes. If you can learn to enjoy the moment in the patience process of learning, in that very same moment you will learn to be content no matter what happens, perhaps without unrealistic expectations.

My Friend Jedd Medefind from The Christian Alliance for Orphans – Orphan Sunday Series, Part 3

Why is the CALL FOR THE ORPHAN great? Watch the following video to statistically understand the meaning of Orphan Sunday and Jedd Medefind’s work.

Orphan Sunday, occurring on November 4, 2012, is a national movement joined by churches all over the world though an organization known as The Christian Alliance for Orphans (CAFO). These three blog entries introduce three dear friends I met through this Alliance with brief information about their respective organizations. My last entry highlighted Dave Wood from Lifeline Children’s Services.

Connected through Greg Buzek, one day I received an email from Jedd Medefind, the previous Special Assistant to the President and Acting Director of the Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, author of three books, and now active President of the Christian Alliance for Orphans (CAFO). I thought to myself, “Who is this guy that wants an Auburn Master’s degree graduate to do another free internship?” After our brief interview, I thought this guy must be crazy. When I prayed and meditated about the internship program, my role, and Jedd’s possible friendship, I realized this might be the opportunity for a lifetime moment to remember. And so my journey with the Christian Alliance for Orphans began! ….with a volunteer internship and a guy named Jedd.

I experienced dark times when I began the internship, possibly another reason why I accepted the chance to become a part of something special. I wanted to feel hope again in my relationship with God. While Jedd often remained busy with the approaching Summit 2011 conference in Louieville, Kentucky (an international celebration and reunion of fatherless advocates from around globe), he constantly made time to occasionally speak with me over the phone and write inspirational emails of encouragement. Even Elizabeth Wiebe, Director of Outreach for CAFO, continually mentioned that “we will make this work,” when I felt overwhelmed with both a full time job and this fully engaged internship, especially when tornadoes ripped my Alabama home state apart. Both Jedd and Elizabeth turned my valley into a mountaintop experience that continues to this very day as the Orphan Sunday State Coordinator for both Georgia and Alabama. They rejoice with me when I live with successful forward movement and empathize with me when down and discouraged, usually with a kind word to lend.

Jedd continues to serve as a powerful presence in my life with prayer, his leadership and communicative styles, and even his example as a devoted author, father, and husband. Like Dave Wood and Larry Bergeron, Jedd is just someone you want to be like, not because of his success but rather because of his humility in Christ. I truly believe God brought the Alliance together under the leadership of this man to eradicate the epidemic of the fatherless so that every child in this world will have an eventual healthy Christian-focused home. It is with Medefind-size faith that I believe and know in my heart this truth.

I have always had a soft spot for children, hence why I currently still work with youth in ministry. While I did not see it when my internship originally began, God brought us together for BIG FULFILLMENTS in Kingdom-building missions, promises, and mentalities. Mentioned as before in other blog entries, some believe ministry is a usual eight to five o’clock job, but in reality, the call to ministry is a twenty-four hour, fourth quarter drill to an eternal finish line. The salvation of others and saving orphans lies in each second of the day. I would say that sometimes Jedd more than likely exhausts himself in traveling, speaking, writing, and making appointments with individuals to serve an awesome God, but he just gets it: the simple truth that a relationship with God brings the greatest blessings and rewards anyone could ever experience in life. Humility plus good works equals explosion of God’s Love for us as believers.

Celebrate with Jedd, myself, and others from around world the cause of the fatherless on this Orphan Sunday, November 4th. We can and will make an eternal difference if we put aside differences and unite for orphaned children! Jedd understands that is about the fatherless and that this thing called life was never meant to be about just us and our personal selves. It is about Him!

Zambia’s Gift to the World from Christian Alliance for Orphans on Vimeo.
(This text was quoted directly from the Christian Alliance for Orphans website.)

In 33 unforgettable minutes, Zambia’s Gift to the World weaves the unlikely story of how Orphan Sunday began in a humble, hard-pressed church in Lusaka, Zambia…and today is impacting lives around the globe.

You’ll encounter vibrant African Christians and the children they’ve embraced…favorites like Steven Curtis Chapman and Francis Chan…as well as remarkable believers from around the world—all sharing of the beauty that rises when Christians reflect God’s heart for the fatherless.

Enjoy the film…and join us in praying that God will use it greatly to stir Christians across America and far beyond!

Zambia’s Gift to the World from Christian Alliance for Orphans on Vimeo.

My Friend Dave Wood from Lifeline Children’s Services – Orphan Sunday Series, Part 2

Orphan Sunday, occurring on November 4, 2012, is a national movement joined by churches all over the world though an organization known as The Christian Alliance for Orphans. These three upcoming blog entries introduce three dear friends I met through this Alliance with brief information about their respective organizations. My last entry highlighted Larry Bergeron of A Child’s Hope International.

I met Dave Wood, the Vice President and International Director of Lifeline Children’s Services, briefly at Summit 2011 in Louisville, Kentucky, and I think we had an instant connection through our comedian-like routines. While serious in both our advocacy efforts for the orphan, the joy of Christ is evident through both our hearts with our laughs and smiles to encourage those we are around. Many in the Lifeline alumni and staff network mistakenly think I look like Herbie Newell, the Executive Director of this adoption ministry, however after meditation and prayer, I really believe my heart and personality resembles that of Dave. I still imagine the day we work together in director-position nonprofit ministry peacemaker roles. Perhaps then we will really through the power of God provide a healthy home for every child in the world, all 147 million of them. It is in fact possible! Sometimes you just in fact have to believe in yourself and your eternal cause and vision!

Dave and I have that big faith that this dream of fate could really happen. We both write. You will notice one of my favorite pieces by Dave in this blog entry, entitled Lifeline. I believe the piece will touch your heart. We both like to laugh and goof off. We both live with an eternal mindset. I hope that as Dave reads this he does not mind my comparison, but he is indeed the kind of person you hope to emulate and be like.

Dave has long had it on his heart to publish a book. Well, I believe it is time we encourage and push him to get there. It is not a matter of whether his material is great enough. It certainly is that and more! I believe in the preaching of the Hip Hop preacher, Eric Thomas. Now is the fourth quarter. Publishing books and advocating for orphans is not easy. If it was, everyone would do it! Let’s pray, push, and press Dave to publish his book through accountability. That is indeed on my list of goals in 2013. So be looking out for one of my favorite people’s writing, Dave Wood! His is book is coming because I believe in his hard work, his real hard work. When you want to be successful as much as you want to breathe, then you will be successful. Eric Thomas informs us to “not talk about it but to be about it.”

LIFELINE!

by Dave Wood on Monday, September 5, 2011 at 12:28am •

Oh darkness lies entrenched within my heart
Fears, like ocean waves flood over my soul
Drowning in the abyss of a sea that is all mine
These black storms have left me without hope
I’m a sinking ship that is listing and all alone
So desperate this very moment for a lifeline
But in this churning flood there is not a lifeline
Only sorrow upon sorrows drowning my heart
The rising sea billows have washed over any hope
Speechless and unattended I am a mortified soul
And though I hear the cries of others I am alone
A vanquished life with nothing left that is mine
I do remember a time when things were mine
There was no thought and no need of a lifeline
I sometimes felt lonely but never really alone
There wasn’t yet a broken and battered heart
The future was still unknown to my naive soul
Back then my tomorrow’s were filled with hope
Skies were clear and a bright magnificent hope
As if a postcard that said the world was mine
The warmth of the sun was peace to my soul
The gentle breeze upon my sails a steady lifeline
Calm waters brought comfort and gave me heart
Too taken to realize I was enjoying this bliss alone
Then one day an unexpected storm cloud rose up alone
This tempest would only grow overtaking all my hope
A fierce head wind pushing against my anchored heart
Waves of thunder burst threatening all that is mine
An ominous beast and not even a compass for a lifeline
Lightning strikes illuminating the hidden dread in my soul
The ship that carried me has now abandoned my soul
Broken into pieces an orphan castaway that is all alone
Longing through tears to be thrown a life saving lifeline
Looking for a brilliant lighthouse to point the way home
All that I ever dreamed for was a family that was mine
To be rescued from this storm and save my dying heart
Oh what my sad soul would give for such an abiding hope
No longer alone and fully loved by parents that are mine
A family is my only lifeline and the sole desire of my heart

Sestina Poem
Copyright © 2011 Dave Wood

I am fired up, pumped up, and motivated to know Dave and his family. He changes lives through his written words, his speaking, his traveling, and his role in ministry. There is something extremely satisfying about living for others, instead of living for retirement. Dave just gets that idea. Dave works at a ministry headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama known as Lifeline Children’s Services where I believe he will complete his journey in faith perhaps until the day he dies. Dave lives for others and has often dedicated his valuable time to point me in a positive direction through mutual discussion and belief in each other. I believe in Lifeline! I believe in Dave! And I believe together one day we just might live with a fourth quarter mentality to push all barriers to publish our books and save orphans. Now is the time to change lives of the youth we work with, and while in different ministries with different purposes, Dave continues to change the lives of thousands. Admire him. Know him. And support his ministry!

Listen and learn, readers, through this video! My hat is off to Dave and his lifetime of lifeline desires and ministries!

 

My Friend Larry Bergeron from A Child’s Hope International – Orphan Sunday Series, Part 1

 

For the LORD your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome, who shows no partiality nor takes a bribe. He administers justice for the fatherless and the widow, and loves the stranger, giving him food and clothing. Deuteronomy 10:17-19 (NKJV)

Orphan Sunday, occuring on November 4, 2012, is a national movement joined by churches all over the world usually though an organization known as The Christian Alliance for Orphans. These three upcoming blog entries introduce three dear friends I met through this Alliance with brief information about their respective organizations.

I met Larry Bergeron briefly at Summit 2011 in Louisville, Kentucky. Larry introduced to me his vitamin formula that sufficientlys feed thousands of orphans and fatherless children all over the world. He graciously gave me a sample of his formula package. Larry and I connected through a supernatural love for the orphan and stayed constantly in touch through our mutual love for writing. I sent Larry a copy of my twenty three poem collection, Veintitres: From the Beginning (First Edition), and he was touched so much by a specific poem in the book, What I Don’t Deserve, listed below, enough to then publish it in his own book and biography memoir.

 

What I Don’t Deserve

 

What I don’t deserve you give me with each breath that I take.
What I don’t deserve is your never-changing love that echoes through all eternity
And cradles me with a hundred blessings every morning that I wake.

What I don’t deserve you give me without hesitation.
What I don’t deserve is my passion that you push to the limits
And the fire that burns within my heart intense with inspiration.

What I don’t deserve is your love that I cannot dare to fully comprehend.
What I don’t deserve is the gift you sent to change the histories of all mankind forever
And pay the debt of so many hearts to mend.

What I don’t deserve are the blessings you lay upon me in the measurements of time.
What I don’t deserve is the continuance of happy thoughts that always seem to be present
And the ladders of tribulation you strengthen me to finish in the life that I climb.

What I don’t deserve is the Spirit who intercedes on my behalf in the midst of my guilt-driven shame.
What I don’t deserve is the extravagance of a Kingdom that I will enter
And the open arms waiting when you call me by my heavenly name.

JLC iii, 2/6/07

 

Larry kindly quoted my published poem in his published book, Journey to the Fatherless, where Larry pours his heart out to readers with faith, logic, and powerful emotions to view childrens’ suffrage as he and I do. You see Larry’s inner spirit pours passions onto those around him. I noticed that Spirit-filled aura about him the first time I met him.

This biography information was taken from the A Child’s Hope International website:

Larry’s story was more turbulent as he was an agnostic for many years of his adult life. He earned three degrees in electronic engineering, twelve patents, spoke at international conferences, wrote numerous journal articles and published one book on digital communications.

Several have cursed his pioneer work in the development of voice mail systems which are so prevalent today. As he climbed the corporate ladder, becoming a vice president for a large, well known American company, his agnostic views and attack on the veracity of the Bible were frequent. He was driven by power, prominence and prestige – and money. As many know first hand, the drive for success can be a destructive force and it was for him as well.

Although wealthy and successful (by the standards of many), there was a growing sense of emptiness in his life. As he strove for even more power, he was becoming more of an angry person at the same time. He viewed Christianity as a crutch for weak people and cursed those who would try and reason with him. About 20 years ago, through a strange and fortunate set of “circumstances”, he eventually stopped running from the Hound of Heaven and gave his life to Jesus Christ.

Like so many of us in our journey for Christ, God grabbed Larry through his love, grace, and mercy. Eventually Larry could not run away from the plan God had for his life to touch thousands that live without. And so he formed with the full support of his wife, A Child’s Hope International, where he now serves as the Executive Director. Larry gave God everything, potentially what could have culminated into thousands of dollars. Now that is what I call a warrior of Christ! I encourage you as a reader of my blog possibly buy his book and visit the website of his organization and cause. As I know Larry, you will also get to know the hero I have come to love and respect. Here’s to you Larry for your deeds and your ministry!

You may learn more about Larry’s organization at the following website: http://www.achildshopeintl.org/HomePage.html

If you would like to more about Larry’s book, Journey to the Fatherless, for possible purchse, then the following website is available: http://www.journeytothefatherless.com/

I WILL FIND you on my KNEES – First Day! New Transition!

“All I can is that John and I wanted more than anything to follow God’s will for us and our family. We had a holy fear of acting outside God’s will, so we agreed to pray that He would show us what that was.” – Kelly Rosati in her book, Wait No More (John is her husband).

I started my new job at the Southern Territorial Headquarters today, and I find myself refreshed by other like-minded people who tick like I do, focused on Jesus as believers in a collective group for Kingdom-building mindsets. After orientation, I found a card from someone in my office with the mention that she would be praying for me this week as I transition into this new career. I have long dreamed of a job that I do not beat myself up and over to drag out of bed to get by, simply for a paycheck. I feel awakened and encouraged to do this job and rise as I encourage others with a meaningful purpose for something bigger than myself. As many say, knock on wood, I may have found something in that passion area of public relations where I campaign and market for a cause I believe in. I find it mind-boggling (“Am I really here in Mid-Town Atlanta?”), a little nerve-racking (new job, new city, and knowing no one), and exciting (“Wow, this could potentially become something amazing!). All the thoughts combine mutually for a few hours of lost sleep and doubts creeping into my mind.

The decision to be and move to Atlanta is now made, and I am not looking back! I am a new creation with a new opportunity with individuals that obviously believe in my abilities to lead, create, and build the face of a reputable organization to the southern youth of America. In the midst of hardship and economic uncertainty, this generation could use more Jesus in any capacity. And I am glad to bring that message of hope to anyone through creative communications.

I keep thinking, “How did I get here?” I prayed to God, sometimes loudly stuck in the stagnancy of survival and routine with a Thank-God-Its-Friday job rather than Thank-God-Its-Monday job. With this phrase, I mean I want to be so excited to get back into the office I cannot hold or hide my excitement for what I love doing. I admit that I need to spend more time with God in His Presence, praying in thankfulness, reading the Word, and believing in the requests I make like this new position, PRAYERS ANSWERED!

Another analytic wonder is the blessings shown to me in a new full time opportunity of epic proportions and another part time opportunity possibly coming behind it. What further astounds me is the support and belief of my family. My father and mother have done everything, and I mean EVERYTHING to transition, to believe, to push, to inspire, and to encourage me with this move to a new city with a new career direction. While we have sometimes not always seen each other eye to eye on my own mental adversities, I owe my success with this new adventure to them just as much as I do God. Thank you, Mom and Dad!

I believe when you find God on your knees, God explodes blessings and favor into your life. Now please understand I do not just mean the routine legalistic bedside manner prayer. “God, please do this. Please be with this person. Please help me to sleep well. Please help me to be promoted. Please help me to pass this test even thought I never studied.”…..I mean when you really get down on your knees and say, “Okay, I am not sure where you have me or how you will have me, but here I am. Here are my true passions. Please place me appropriately where you will call me to obey you in line with these passions.” When you seek God with sincerity, He will answer your prayers with that same sincerity.

Like Kari Job says in the following song, I will find you on my knees! When you truly want something in change for God’s Kingdom, find it on your knees. Ask. And like me currently in shock, God will call you by name! I guarantee it! My life serves as living proof.