Monthly Archives: December 2013

Tis Only One Life

This coming Sunday, I have the honor of preaching at Temple Baptist Church in Covington, VA. As I was preparing I came across a poem by C.T. Studd I want to share with you. It has a simple but powerful message, one that would do me well to remember.

Two little lines I heard one day, Traveling along life’s busy way;
Bringing conviction to my heart, And from my mind would not depart;
Only one life, ’twill soon be past, Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, yes only one, Soon will its fleeting hours be done;
Then, in ‘that day’ my Lord to meet, And stand before His Judgment seat;
Only one life, ’twill soon be past, Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, the still small voice, Gently pleads for a better choice
Bidding me selfish aims to leave, And to God’s holy will to cleave;
Only one life, ’twill soon be past, Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, a few brief years, Each with its burdens, hopes, and fears;
Each with its clays I must fulfill, living for self or in His will;
Only one life, ’twill soon be past, Only what’s done for Christ will last.

When this bright world would tempt me sore, When Satan would a victory score;
When self would seek to have its way, Then help me Lord with joy to say;
Only one life, ’twill soon be past, Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Give me Father, a purpose deep, In joy or sorrow Thy word to keep;
Faithful and true what e’er the strife, Pleasing Thee in my daily life;
Only one life, ’twill soon be past, Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Oh let my love with fervor burn, And from the world now let me turn;
Living for Thee, and Thee alone, Bringing Thee pleasure on Thy throne;
Only one life, “twill soon be past, Only what’s done for Christ will last.

Only one life, yes only one, Now let me say,”Thy will be done”;
And when at last I’ll hear the call, I know I’ll say “twas worth it all”;
Only one life, ’twill soon be past, Only what’s done for Christ will last.

We have but on life to live. Throughout the Bible you can find references to how short our lives are. Now that I am married and have a daughter, I am noticing how quickly life seems to move. It really takes a concerted effort to truly live life with all there is. It is something I am striving to do starting now, not waiting until 2014. But, in the grand scheme of life, and what this poem is all about, only what you do for Christ will last. Your inheritance will eventually be spent. The stuff you leave behind will eventually find its way to a yard sale or garage sale or box in the basement. What truly lasts though is the impact you make on someone for the Lord. What kind of impact are you making? You can choose to live for yourself but that is the saddest of all existence. When you decide to live for the Lord, your life becomes so much bigger than anything else because you are living for the God who made everything.


My thoughts on the Duck Dynasty situation

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Duck Dynasty is pretty funny, especially if you enjoy watching rednecks do redneck things. My wife and father-in-law enjoy watching it and most of the time I will sit and watch it as well. Basically, the show is based around rednecks being rednecks. There are a number of shows like this on TV: Rodeo Girls, American Hoggers, The Legend of Shelby the Swampman, and Moonshiners are a few I found after doing a Google search for “Redneck shows on TV.” There are actually more than this if you do more searching.

The Robertson family started a duck call company and they have done pretty well. As you watch the show, and see the houses they live in, you can tell their business has done well. However, what has made Duck Dynasty have an even stronger pull, especially in conservative Christian circles, is the fact they profess to be Christians. After the show took off, you could find the Robertsons making their rounds in the Christian conference circle. Si was at Catalyst. Jace and his wife were on the K-Love radio show, Willie has been to Liberty University and even the Duck Dynasty teens are scheduled to be at a New Year’s party at Liberty University as well. Needless to say, they have had the chance to share their faith on a number of stages because of the success of their reality TV show. It was doing well until recently when Phil made a couple comments concerning homosexuality in an interview with GQ magazine. Then, A&E came out and suspended Phil from the show indefinitely. This does not surprise me.

I would say if the people on Duck Dynasty are truly going to follow their own motto of “Faith, family, ducks” then they should tell A&E there will be no show without their father. If they truly believe in what they say, this would seem to be the logical step. If A&E won’t allow someone on their show to share their own beliefs, then why should the rest of the Robertson family allow A&E to silence their own father but keep making who knows how much money from the show?

You might respond to that by saying look at the witness they are able to have with their show and be on TV and impact so many people. While this is true, is it necessary for them to remain on TV to have an impact on this world for Christ? No, it is anything but necessary. They were a successful family and business before TV, so chances are they would remain successful even without the show. Also, how many people do you think have been impacted simply through watching the show? How many lives do you really think have been changed by watching rednecks do what rednecks do? Probably not as many as we would hope because if you were to do a search to figure out who watches this show, it would probably be a majority of people who already profess some type of faith or who just enjoy watching rednecks.

Here is where I want to take a little different route for the rest of this post. I want to discuss what has come to be known in this part of the world as basically “celebrity Christians.” You can find them all over the US: sports, movies, TV shows, music industry and more. Christians have claimed people from Tim Tebow to Carrie Underwood to Justin Bieber (not so much anymore) to Mel Gibson among many more. It seems anytime someone states they believe differently than the world, we are quick to accept them as Christians even though we do not know much about their lives. Do celebrity Christians truly help the cause of Christ? Or do they sometimes bring about more negative views from the public? Let’s look at the most recent comments by Phil Robertson as an example.

Let me give two illustrations. For the first one, let’s say Phil Robertson is having a meal with a family friend who happens to not be a follower of Christ. Maybe Phil has been praying for this individual for a long time and for a chance to witness to this individual. Their conversation turns to faith and God. This is a great place for Phil to share his beliefs because he has a relationship with the person he is talking to, the person knows Phil is not a homophobe or “spewer” of hate language and such. This individual is also able to sense the love Phil has for everyone, including homosexuals, though he clearly does not agree with their lifestyle and holds to what the Bible teaches, which is homosexuality is a sin.

Next, let’s say Phil has an interview with a well-known magazine publication, maybe GQ, because of his celebrity status (face it, GQ would not be interviewing Phil Robertson for anything if not for the success of the TV show). Perhaps GQ asks Phil a question about his faith, in his response, he shares what he believes in a loving way and he simply states he believes, according to the Bible, homosexuality is a sin.

Which of these situations will receive a better response from someone who does not believe in God? Which situation would probably receive more chances to share their faith with that person and more who need to hear about Christ? It is obvious the first situation, a personal relationship, is the best way for anyone to share their faith in Christ. When Christians are given a platform to share what they believe with the world, many times, maybe most of the time, it will come out in a loving way but be taken as hate language because they hear words going against their chosen lifestyle. And in the world we live in, people are constantly looking for ways to quiet Christians. This does not surprise me. 1 John 3:13 says we should not be surprised the world hates us. 1 Peter 4:12 says “do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes to test you, as though something strange were happening to you…if you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you.”

Thus, celebrity Christians can wind up doing more harm than good. The way A&E responded to Phil Robertson is not surprising. It is the world acting like the world. The world does not agree with us anymore and the time where Christians could stand on the street corner and preach or have open air evangelistic crusades in this country and have an overwhelming response is basically in the past. The time where Christians could openly share what they believe in the public is no longer here. For every couple people impacted with the Gospel by a celebrity Christian, you have more people turned off by it who could have been reached through a friendship with a follower of Christ. When a celebrity Christian says something from a platform that goes against culture, it can close them off from Christian influence and even hurt friendships with Christians.

So, I have said a lot but what is my point? What would I say to Christians today in this world who are crying foul to what has recently happened? I would say it is time for Christians to come back to a 1 Timothy 2:1-3 lifestyle. What does 1 Timothy 2:1-3 say?

First of all, then, I urge that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for all people, for kings and all who are in high positions, that we may lead a peaceful and quiet life, godly and dignified in every way. This is good, and it is pleasing in the sight of God our Savior.

Throughout history, Christianity has spread more through personal relationships than any other way. More people have been impacted by Christ through a relationship with a Christian. Not a knock on the door and an evangelistic presentation, but through doing life together and living in community. Unfortunately, that has been lost in today’s society. We try to live lives among people like us, hoping the world comes to us. We will invite someone to church without getting to know them or getting to know their story. It is in a personal relationship where we can show people we truly do love everyone and are not spewing hate language when we tell them we believe homosexuality is a sin. The world needs Christians to live as Jesus did, to live among them and love them while living a godly life. This is the type of life that will bring avenues to witness and see changed lives. When Christians get up in arms because of a situation like what happened to Phil Robertson, I do not believe it does much good for the cause of Christ. It might do things for the American way or the American dream, but not so much for the cause of Christ.

If we truly want to make an impact on the world, I believe 1 Timothy 2:1-3 gives us the best advice on how to do that. Then if we add that with the Great Commission, we will impact the world and lives will be changed. If we are going to fight for a freedom of speech, do not claim it is what the Bible says we as Christians should do because I have yet to see anything in the Bible that truly tells Christians to boycott or picket or email companies announcing our displeasure. The Bible never says we are to get revenge. But it does tell us to be ready for fiery trials and persecution.


Waiting…and watching.

watchman

 

Psalm 130

  1. Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord!
  2. O Lord, hear my voice! Let your ears be attentive to the voice of my pleas for mercy!
  3. If you, O Lord, should mark iniquities, O Lord, who could stand?
  4. But with you there is forgiveness, that you may be feared.
  5. I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in HIS WORD I hope;
  6. my soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen for the morning, more than watchman for the morning.
  7. O Israel, hope in the Lord! For with the Lord there is steadfast love, and with Him is plentiful redemption.
  8. And He will redeem Israel from all His iniquities.

I read this Psalm this morning in part of my daily reading. I had read this passage many times previously and even heard it read a number of times so when I first read it, I did not give much thought to it. However, I picked up my Bible and read through it again and this time the meaning behind it seemed to jump out at me. My wife and I have been going through a period in our lives where it seems God has us waiting for some reason. Even when it seems something is about to happen pretty quickly, we wind up waiting. Now, as a youth pastor, if there is one thing I know and have learned in my relationship with the Lord, God’s timing is perfect. Many times I would prefer God to move in a different way than He does only to wind up looking back and realizing the way it happened was the best way. This, however, does not always cure the anxious feelings that invade our hearts and minds during a period of waiting.

Then enter this Psalm. Verse 5 starts with “I wait for the Lord, my soul waits…” Not many people want to say this let alone live it. We want God to work and work quickly. We do not like having to wait. As children, we did not like having to wait to open our presents on Christmas morning. We wanted to open them Christmas Eve. If our parents succumbed to our begging one year, we tried again the next year, but this time the day before Christmas Eve. There is a huge part of us that longs for immediate gratification without having to wait. We want what we want and we want it now. There was a popular song containing the lines “I know what I want, and I want it now.” Ironically this line is from a song titled “Mr. Vain.” Basically, our hearts yearn for things to be done in our timing. We do not want to wait.

However, the Psalmist does not stop with those words. The next line is what makes all the difference. It made all the difference then and it continues to make all the difference for followers of Christ today. “AND in HIS WORD I hope.” Hope is an important word. Hope is what can make even the dimmest circumstances bearable. Hope is what can cause people to keep going even though there seems to be no reason. If you talk to survivors of the Holocaust, many of them will tell you the only thing keeping them alive was hope. Hope there time would end. Hope a rescue would happen. Hope tomorrow would be different. Anyone who has read up on the Holocaust knows the times were horrible and the fact anyone could or would retain any hope is amazing.

I previously mentioned Christmas. Right now we are going through the period of time leading up to Christmas known to the church as “Advent.” Advent is a time of expectant waiting and preparation for the second coming of Christ while taking time to remember the first coming, when Jesus came to earth to dwell among His creation, the Creator becoming like the created, to bring salvation. Advent is a time followers of Christ strive to focus our hearts for the second coming of Christ where everything will be changed forever and there will be no more suffering…or waiting. No more waiting. Imagine that. Think about that for a second. When Christ comes this second time, there will be no more waiting. We will be with our Savior.

Going back to Psalm 130 though, what is it that brings about this hope? It is God’s Word. God’s Word is able to bring hope into anyone’s life. Why? Because in God’s Word we are able to make sense of life. God’s Word answers the toughest questions about life. Why is there suffering? Why do bad things happen to good people? Why is there evil in the world? Where did the world come from? Is there life after death? Is there a heaven and a hell? Is there a God? What is our purpose? All of these questions are answered in God’s Word. So God’s Word is able to bring about hope.

Flip forward in your Bible to Romans 8:18 and we can receive more reason for hope in this life, no matter what circumstances we might be facing.

“For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory to be revealed to us.”

No matter how bad life gets, no matter how much we have to wait, God’s Word is sufficient to help us through. Why? Because it brings hope. Hope this life is not all there is. Hope that a brighter day will come that will far outweigh any suffering we have gone through in this life.

So are we to just passively sit by and wait for God to move? No. If you read Psalm 130:6, it says “My soul waits for the Lord, more than watchman for the morning.” What was a watchman’s duty? They were to stand guard for a city night and day to look for invading armies. They had an extremely important job. No doubt throughout their watch, they were actively watching, scanning the horizons to look for any sign of a possible invasion or an army approaching. The whole city owed their security to this watchman. If a watchman fell asleep on his watch, it could bring disaster for a city. So watchmen no doubt waited for the morning, but with a longing, because morning meant they made it through another night, they had hope for a new day without war. Watchmen were actively watching all night while waiting for the morning.

As followers of Christ, we are constantly watching while we are waiting. We are actively scanning the horizon for signs of God’s work and movement while waiting for Him with a hope that comes from spending time in His Word. As my wife and I are waiting, we are actively striving to trust in God because of His Word. Many times, it is what keeps us moving because it offers hope. And hope keeps us moving…and waiting…and watching.


Remembering Sandy Hook Elementary

SandyHook

Tomorrow marks one year since the horrific shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, CT. Hard to believe it has already been a year since everyone received news of what had taken place. Who would have thought that someone would actually go after the children? Even in jails, there seems to be a mindset that those who have abused children are treated the worse by other inmates because they are so innocent and full of life and energy. Then, on that fateful day, it was all taken away. Families left shattered through a holiday season supposed to bring joy and family fun. Christmas presents under their tree never to be opened by the one they were intended for. My heart breaks for those families today. My prayers go out to them through yet another holiday season where there will be tears and memories. But none of that will bring back their loved ones. Many things are being done around the US in their memory. One thing is simply challenging people to perform a random act of kindness. It seems simple enough; until we stop thinking about it. It is so easy to get caught up in our own lives we forget there are millions of people in the US alone who are not as well off as we are. There are people who will not spend time with loved ones this holiday season; children who will not have presents to open. I do not say this to cause you to feel guilty, but to remember just how much you are blessed with. Christmas around the world for Christians is also a time of stiffer persecution. Many anti-Christian groups use Christmas as a time to commit various acts against Christians. I learned that from reading the book The Global War on Christians by John Allen.

So, throughout this season, spend time with loved ones and be with them. Strive to not allow yourself to get caught up in finding the “perfect” gift because in so many people’s lives, the best present is your presence. How can you be present in someone else’s life this holiday season? Do you know someone who has lost a loved one? Do you know a family whose child might not have anything to open this Christmas morning? How can you serve? Because this is the message of Christmas, Christ became one of us to serve us.

Matthew 20:28 – “even as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many.”

Philippians 2:5-7 – “Have this mind among yourselves which is yours in Christ Jesus, who though He was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men.”

Jesus could have come demanding worship as a high powered king. Instead, Jesus came as a baby to the poorest among us to reach the world. He came and took our place, our punishment. The message of Christmas is Christ came to earth to live among us and be one of us. And when He left, He gave us the mission of doing the same thing. Christmas is one time we are truly able to do that. I have not been great at this but this year, I want to strive to make a difference somehow in someone’s life who could do nothing to repay me, but to smile and say thank you.

Jesus came to seek and to save that which was lost as Luke 19:10 says. I was lost but God found me. Who in my life might still be lost where I can shine a light into their lives? Light can provide hope and warmth among other things. Where you can be a glimmer of hope this season? What will your children remember of this Christmas? Will it be of opening presents and seeing family like other years? Or will it be the start of a new tradition of being the light in someone’s darkness? This challenge is to me. If it speaks to you, that is amazing.

If you already have a similar tradition on Christmas, I would love to hear about it. It might help me and my wife come up with a plan of how we can do the same thing with our little girl in raising her to know the true meaning behind Christmas.

Thanks for taking the time to read this post. Feel free to share it with others. And take time tomorrow to pray for those families directly impacted in Newtown, CT and for other families you know who might have recently lost loved ones and this will be a particularly difficult holiday season for.


The Gospel Transformation Bible

I can honestly say this is the first Bible I have ever reviewed. I can also say I was extremely excited to have the opportunity to see all the Gospel Transformation Bible had to offer. I knew it would be quality because of the reputation Crossway has, and I also knew it would be quality because it was God’s Word. Thus, I was looking forward to having the opportunity to check it out and give my opinion for the blogging universe. Keep reading to gain a better perspective as to why you should check out the Gospel Transformation Bible.

First off, the great thing about this study Bible is obvious from the title; it is all about the Gospel. The introduction in the front says it well:

The goal of the Gospel Transformation Bible is twofold: (1) to enable readers to understand that the whole Bible is a unified message of the gospel of God’s grace culminating in Christ Jesus, and (2) to help believers apply this good news to their everyday lives in a heart transforming way.

Next, this is great for any number of reasons but one of the main reasons is it helps point the reader to Christ. However, I believe for a while now, this has not always been preached from the pulpit though in many American churches. Recently though, there is a movement where the Gospel is taking center stage in the church again, as it should. As I have matured and grown in my walk with the Lord, I have come to understand the Gospel is not just what the New Testament has to say about Jesus Christ and does not just begin with Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. There is not a different God in the New Testament than there is in the Old Testament. God is one and the same and we come to understand this as we come to understand the Gospel more clearly. The Gospel is preached from the very beginning of Genesis through the history of Israel to the “Gospels” all the way through to Revelation. Everything points to and comes out of Jesus Christ. Colossians 1 paints such a clear picture of how everything is because of Jesus Christ, and everything is for Jesus Christ, and everything is through Jesus Christ. (Colossians 1:16-20) Apart from Him, there is no Gospel; apart from Jesus, there is no grace. This study Bible helps the reader understand this most important fact about the Bible.

As a youth pastor, I get the amazing privilege and opportunity to interact with youth on a daily and weekly basis and in many ways, it has been eye opening. Through simply asking teens the question “What is the Gospel”, you will receive many different answers. This should be a warning sign to the church that we need to take action and help the next generation realize the Gospel does not only begin in Matthew, it begins from the very beginning. Through my time as a youth pastor, I have come to realize encouraging youth to simply “be good” or “act right” or “make good choices” does nothing to really get to the heart of the matter. This is not only true with youth; it is true with adults as well. If the church wants to truly see change, the Gospel needs to be preached constantly and fully. The Gospel Transformation Bible helps us figure out how to do that. The Gospel is the only thing powerful enough to change lives. When people come to God, through Christ, they are not supposed to clean up first and then come to God, Jesus welcomes us as we are and then begins a process of cleaning us up. This is part of the Gospel. The more we understand that, the less judgmental we will be.

With that said, I want to move on because this post is a review, not a sermon. You might be reading this and thinking well that is good for those in the ministry, it will help them teach me better because I do not have time to study all of this on my own. If this is in any way similar to your line of thinking, this Bible is for you. You will not need a pastor to help you understand everything this Bible has to say. This Bible will help you understand how the Gospel can be seen through practically every story in the Bible and help you understand how you can apply this to your life and walk in the grace made available to us all through Jesus Christ. This Bible can help anyone from a teenager to a seasoned adult to a parent wanting a more meaningful time of family devotions understand how all of Scripture contains elements of the Gospel and all of Scripture points to the Gospel.

Simply put, this Bible is worth your investment. It will take your devotional time to a deeper meaning and understanding of how the Gospel is woven throughout the whole of Scripture and how it brings a much deeper purpose to our lives as well as training us to go out and make disciples. Basically, if you are a Christian, the Gospel Transformation Bible should be on your list of things to purchase, especially if you desire a deeper understanding of what it means to be a Christian and a more intimate relationship with the Lord. It is probably a little big for a stocking, but it will be a gift that will reap far more rewards than any video game or smartphone or digital device ever will. Here is a link to the Gospel Transformation Bible on Amazon:

http://rcm-na.amazon-adsystem.com/e/cm?lt1=_blank&bc1=000000&IS2=1&npa=1&bg1=FFFFFF&fc1=000000&lc1=0000FF&t=the027c-20&o=1&p=8&l=as4&m=amazon&f=ifr&ref=ss_til&asins=1433538679

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Crossway in exchange for this review. Thanks for taking the time to read this review and feel free to leave comments or questions.


Life Lessons from Kanye and J Biebs

This morning on my commute to Covington, I was listening to a local radio station. I do this regularly for a couple reasons.

  1. The radio is one of the easiest ways to stay up on current music and what is popular. As a youth pastor, I believe this is one way I can be prepared to understand youth and what is impacting them daily.
  2. It also helps me hear stories/current events I might not come across scanning news websites online. I read a lot of stories online but listening to the radio helps me come across different stories.

Now, this morning, as I was listening, the DJ’s shared two stories that I was just left shaking my head. The first story was about Kanye West. Kanye is currently on his most recent tour, the ‘Yeezus’ tour” and during a recent radio interview, he said basically his job on the tour is just as hard as “being a cop or being in a war.” Really? Traveling the world, singing songs on a stage in front of thousands of spectators is as hard as being a cop or being in a war? He went on to explain himself:

“I’m just giving of my body on the stage and putting my life at risk, literally,” West said. “When I think about when I’m on the ‘Can’t Tell Me Nothing,’ and ‘Coldest Winter’ moment, like that mountain goes really, really high. And if I slipped… You never know. And I think about it. I think about my family and I’m like, wow, this is like being a police officer or something, in war or something.”

Man. Does Kanye have anyone in his life that will speak the truth to him or help him understand what war is about? But, he goes on to try to explain himself even more.

“Like you’re literally going out to do your job every day knowing that something could happen to you. Something could happen to you verbally from the press bashing you, something could happen to you from people not liking you anymore ’cause of your records— you could actually slip on that stage.”

So, being a concert performer is compared to people who put their lives on the line to serve others and keep their country safe and free. Not sure I understand exactly where Mr. West is coming from. He gets paid in the millions to travel and perform and entertain. Cops and soldiers get paid to risk their lives and most of the time it is hardly enough to provide for their families.

Second, Justin Bieber was also interviewed recently and made the statement that he believes he is an object of bullying, by the media and other people. Now, to his defense, I cannot imagine living with so much exposure to the world where every choice is noticed. However, JB hasn’t helped himself with some of his choices. He also mentions the fact he is only 19 and still trying to find out who he is. With that, I can partially understand because in today’s world, many 19 year olds have no idea who they are or who they want to be. But, at the same time, 19 year olds should know how to figure out who they are without making choices like he does. It seems Justin doesn’t understand the idea that there are consequences to your actions. If you go out and act a certain way, especially living in the public eye as he does, there will be a reaction and people will talk.

So what is my point? Lack of accountability and responsibility for actions can lead to unhealthy views of oneself. This is true of anyone. Living above the law, or living where there is no consequences, can do this as well. Unfortunately, this is what our young people are growing up seeing, celebrities making choices a “normal” citizen would get arrested for allowed to go free. What does this lead to? A bigger view of oneself than is healthy. If we want a responsible future generation, we need to hold everyone responsible in the same way. In the church, we need to do this as well. But how? Preach the Gospel. Teaching them to simply act right because God wants them to misses the point. The whole Gospel is the only thing powerful enough to change a future generation of responsible people.

Thanks for taking the time to read this post. I would love to hear your thoughts so feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below.  You can also feel free to share this post with friends if you so desire.


Want to become a better communicator?

 

Secrets of Dynamic Communication by Ken Davis

Ever since I first had the opportunity to speak in front of a group of students, I wanted to be remembered as a great speaker; I might even go for a good speaker. Now that I am a youth pastor, I want students to remember what I share with them. When opportunities present themselves for me to fill the pulpit for the senior pastor, I want to know how to communicate in a clear and powerful manner. Like some of you who read this blog, I do not want to overwhelm people with information and pointless words. I do not want people leaving a church service overwhelmed with all that I covered and struggling to truly remember any of the points I presented. Because of this, when I saw this book, I wanted to read it. I am extremely glad I did.

Ken Davis provides the tools necessary to become a speaker people will remember, and along with that, a speaker whose information and message are able to be remembered long after the conclusion. Before reading this book, I had never heard of Ken Davis before. Now I plan on using this book over and over again through the course of my own ministry and training and I will recommend it to anyone who desires to become the best speaker they can be.

Utilizing the SCORRE method, Ken Davis gives readers the necessary information to become dynamic speakers. SCORRE is an acronym which stands for the 6 steps of the method: Subject, Central Theme, Objective, Rationale, Resources and Evaluation. Each of these steps serves as an individual tool and process for developing your talk, message or presentation. “Nothing in the book is designed to change your style or restrict your creativity, but rather, to bring the power of focus to your creativity.” Ken shares “if you want to communicate, the single most important ingredient is an unmistakable aiming point and a careful plan to hit it. FOCUS, FOCUS, FOCUS. Focused purpose. Focused presentation.” This is what the method is all about, helping you focus as you prepare. He also says “if we don’t have a set focus for our presentation, an unconscious one will take over.” Why? Because as a speaker, “if you want people to listen, learn, and take action, you must speak with a crystal-clear focus.” Each and every one of us at one point or another has listened to a speaker who lost us. We have also heard speakers who could seemingly make even the most boring topic seem interesting because of how they presented their topic. If you do not know what I am talking about, do a Google search for TED talks. There you will find examples of many different types of communicators from good ones to bad ones. Ken Davis wants to help you avoid being remembered as a speaker who lost their audience.

While reading Secrets of Dynamic Communication, I found myself practicing what Ken Davis wrote. Each Sunday morning, I have the opportunity to speak to students and share with them from the Word of God. It is a privilege I try not to take lightly. However, I know there have been times I lost the students, or shared information with them they had no idea what to do with. I have struggled to keep some awake and struggled to remain on point other times. Because of this, I realize I have some growing to do and thanks to this book and the SCORRE method, I have what it will take to become a better communicator, which will benefit not only myself, but also everyone who listens to me speak.

Simply put, if you see yourself speaking to people in the future, this book is a must read. Even if you do not believe you are a gifted and talented communicator, this book can serve to encourage you and present all you need to take your communicating to the next level. Ken also teaches a SCORRE conference which as the book says, “has enabled thousands of men and women from around the world to prepare with focus, deliver with clarity and speak with power.”

If this is something you desire, even if all you teach is a Sunday school of 5 junior high boys, this book will help you communicate in a manner they will remember long after they have moved on from under your tutelage. Secrets of Dynamic Communication is a great book and I highly recommend it. You will be glad you picked it up.

Thanks for taking the time to read this review. Take time to check out some of my other reviews on this blog.

 

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com <http://BookSneeze®.com> book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 <http://www.access.gpo.gov/nara/cfr/waisidx_03/16cfr255_03.html> : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”