“Go and make disciples of all nations baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  Teach them to observe all things that I have commanded you.  And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” - Matthew 28:19-20

We believe that we have been called to use the gifts God has given us to reach unbelievers for Him and to encourage, and build up His Church.

"I Know My Own"

Just four words: "I know my own."  These words, spoken by Jesus, are, of course, part of a longer discourse.  "I am the Good Shepherd," he said, "I know my own and they know me."  The lesson goes on from there, but I've been thinking about those first four words a lot lately.  They're simple enough, but I'm experiencing them in a whole new way recently.  Jesus knows me: my history, my emotional make-up, my fears, insecurities, dreams, and go-to responses in life.  He knows me because I am His own.  Our relationship isn't based on my religiosity, good works, or my ability to know Him.  HE knows me.  So what does that look like in practical application?

Last weekend I had a show scheduled at a nursing home in the next town over.  I did a quick trip to the town's garbage dump before packing up for the show, and on the way home, my car's power steering went, the engine showed it was running hot, and all the 'idiot' lights came on.  I recognized it as the serpantine belt being on the verge of breaking.  There was no way I'd get to the show.  And God reminded me that He knows me: my situation, the fact that Covid and a snow storm had caused me to postpone this show twice already, my fear of getting a bad reputation for canceling so many times, and my tendency to worry. I was overwhelmed with -not anxiety- but peace.  Jesus knows me and knows the situation. I had no solutions, just peace of mind based on nothing but the promise that the Lord knows me.

Soon I felt the right thing to do was to ask  a neighbor and someone who we've gone to church with for years to borrow their car. Here my got to emotion is shame that I can't fix my own problems and embarressment that I need to ask for help.  But this time I remembered that God knows me: my emotional make up and insecurities.  I knew that Jim and Deb were not only happy to help me out, but were actively supporting a ministry that is truly important.   I got to the show with enough time to set up and start only 15 minutes late, which was 15 minutes they would have asked me for because they were running late!

Later in the week, I emceed our school's talent show.  When the show was over and the judges deliberated over the winners, I performed my favorite rouine: "Mary and Marty".  This is a routine with some juggling that needs to be particularly precise.  As I worked through the skit, I blew a couple tricks.  It would be normal for me to get discouraged only to make more mistakes.  But I recalled those four words: "I know my own."  I didn't let discouragement enter my head,a and the routine finished strong, and more importantly, the point of the routine came across pretty well.

There have been many other small moments recently in which I have meditated upon those four words: "I know my own" .

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A Few Testimonies

The presentation was fun and encouraging... The gospel message was clear and encouraging. I purchased your book and just finished it. Your scope is broad and again encouraging. May God continue to bless your ministry. I will encourage others to read your book. -Parishioner of a local church

"Hey, I  wanted to say that was a great message in chapel today! It touched something:) thanks for doing it!" -High School Student  

"We are so grateful that you brought your amazing ministry back to our church this year... The Gospel message you bring applies to all!  It is such a positive, valuable work that you do."  -Coordinator of Christian Ed. UCC Church

"There's no questioning it. This is powerful stuff. It's extremely touching at times, never less than entertaining, and I see a lot of sincere love for Jesus in you guys."  -Dwight Lilies, song writer

The Lord has given you a wonderful window through which to present the Gospel!   - Field Director of Alliance Missions to Paraguay

"What a wonderful ministry to both children and adults.  In past years it has been a struggle to arrange programing that would hold the attention of all ages, but also challenge each heart with God's gift of Salvation.  Thank you for sharing your ministry."  -Sunday School Sup't.

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