Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Christian Rapper: R Swift

I have been hearing R Swift as a guest rapper on some of my other CD's and finally had the chance to showcase him.  Another example of exceptional talent.  Enjoy.


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Every Christian an Evangelist

There is a doctirne in the United States Marine Corps that is known as "The Rifleman's Creed". It states that every enlisted Marine, regardless of their military specialization (MOS), is trained first and foremost to be a rifleman. And every Marine officer, regardless of MOS, is trained as an Infantry Platoon Commander. This doctrine is in place so that no matter what happens in combat, every Marine and officer is prepared to continue the mission to close with and destroy the enemy. This way if a cook is in the kitchen and a fire fight breaks out, he or she can stop cooking, grab a rifle and help their fellow Marines deal with the adversary.  Hoo-rah!!

The Christian should have a similar mentality in life.  We should use "The Evangelist's Creed".  That means that every Christian (whether a Pastor, Deacon, Elder, or Layperson) is first and foremost an Evangelist.  We should all be able to communicate the plan for salvation to our peers, regardless of our age, position, or location in the church.  Evangelism is not just the job of the Pastor.  It is the job of every born again believer to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ with everyone that we run into.  We should not only be prepared to witness to the world, we should desire to run into unsaved people so that we can share the good news with them.  Notice that I did not say that we had to convert everyone that we ran into.  It is ultimately up to the individual whether or nor they accept Christ.  But we have to actively expose them to Jesus so that the word of God can penetrate into their heart.  How can we make sure that we are prepared to do this?  We need to know the truth for ourselves.  We need to spend time with God ourselves.  And we need to want the person to receive salvation. 

Just as the Marine is always ready for combat, we should always be ready to witness.  It is the only way that we will be able to defeat the enemy.  Hallelujah!!

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Sunday, April 11, 2010

Modesto Manifesto

Do you have any idea who this energetic gentleman is? 

I'll give you a hint.  He is one of the most respected evangelist in the country; if not the world.  That's right.  These are pictures of a young William Franklin Graham Jr. (AKA Billy Graham).  These pictures are from the 50's.  I had never seen them before this week.  It's quite a difference from the gentleman that I remember. 


I found this information at the Lifehouse Church website. It is something that I think every Ministry Leader should read.  You can click HERE to to see the information in it's original form. I copied it directly from the website.

Modesto Manifesto
(A plan for holiness)

Perhaps no other leading church figure of the past 50 years commands as much admiration and respect from both the Christian and non-Christian world as does the Rev. Billy Graham. While he has suffered some criticism over the years, no scandals have rocked his ministry - and it has been intensely scrutinized. One of the major reasons Reverend Graham and his associates have avoided pitfalls and scandal goes back to November of 1948 and what took place in a hotel room in Modesto, California. It was there The Modesto Manifesto was birthed.

Graham and his associates, Bev Shea, Grady Wilson, and Cliff Barrows, were just starting to get involved in evangelistic meetings. At the time, many traveling evangelists were crossing the country. And a number fell to scandals - moral, ethical and financial. In a desire to see their ministry remain above scandal, the men met to discuss the problems evangelists faced. They came up with four problems to avoid and ways to avoid them.

1. Money
It was common practice among evangelists to put a lot of emotion and flourish into taking love offerings. This could bring unnecessary criticism - and temptation. The men vowed not to emphasize the offering. To avoid criticism they would always have the local campaign committees oversee the offerings and disbursements of funds - they would accept a straight salary regardless of how high the offerings were.

2. Immorality
Religious leaders especially those who traveled were regularly falling to this temptation. The men agreed continually to pray for God to guard them from it. They also set up some rules to follow. They would never allow themselves to be alone with women - lunches, counseling sessions, or rides to auditoriums or airports. And they would always get their hotel rooms close together as another safeguard.

3. Exaggeration
The phrase evangelistically speaking has been coined to label exaggerated figures of the number attending meetings or the number saved. The men vowed not to fall to this practice. If numbers were mentioned they were the ones generated by the local police, fire departments, or arena managers.

4. Criticism.
Often evangelists would criticize local pastors and churches from pulpits. The men vowed not to do this, nor would they ever criticize pastors who openly criticized them.

Now back to me!  As the article above noted, this Manifesto was written in 1948.  Look at the timelessness of these four simple things.  How many strong ministries have been crippled by Money, Immorality, Exaggeration, and Criticism?  Too many.  I'm going to make sure that I always have a copy of this somewhere.  I would advise the same for any ministry leader. 

Peace and Love,

Rev. Mike


Sunday, April 4, 2010

Image is Everything

Do you know what this shoe is?  It's a brand called Starbury; and it was designed by professional basketball player Stephon Marbury a few years ago as an alternative to the expensive basketball shoes that were being marketed to young urban youth at the time. I say that they were an alternative because he wanted to sell the shoes for less than $20. His reasoning was that he wanted to provide a shoe that working single mothers could buy for their children without spending over $100 per pair. The shoes looked nice enough, but didn’t attract main stream appeal.

And why do you think that was? I asked some of the kids in my church if they would buy a pair of Starbury’s and it took me about 10 minutes to get an answer from them. The reason it took me that long was because it took them about 10 minutes to stop laughing at me. The kids told me that they didn’t want to get clowned (made fun of) by their friends for wearing such a cheap shoe. Now some of the kids that I know are fortunate enough to be able to able to get a pair of $100 shoes. Many times the children have more money in their pocket than I do. But that’s not the point. For these kids and many others, it wouldn’t matter if the cheaper shoes were better in appearance and quality than the more expensive ones. The fact that their peer group would know that they bought the cheap shoe would destroy the image that they were trying to perpetuate.

Isn’t that what we do as adults? We have an image that we are trying to maintain. We want to be viewed a certain way. Some of us want to be seen as affluent.  Some of us want to be seen as stong.  Others of us want to be seen as wise and respectable.  But no matter what, we have an image that we want to present to the world.  We value the image that we create for ourselves.  And we do certain things to protect the image.  But is that always the right thing?  Let's examine another way of looking at ourselves.

Do you know what Imago Dei is?  It is a concept that asserts that human beings are created in God's image and therefore have inherent value independent of their utility or function.  In other words, we are valuable simply because we are God's creation.  Check out this link at Wikipedia for a little more information.  But the point is this:  it doesn't matter what you wear.  It doesn't matter where you live.  It doesn't even matter what you do for a living.  Your inherent value as a child of God outweighs anything that you could create or achieve for yourself. 
I spend a lot of time thinking about my image and the way that people view me. I  realize that I'm a minister that works in the secular world.  Before that, I am a Christian.  And even before that, I am a child of God that was created in the image of God.  And that is what people should see in me before they see anythng else.  Trust me.  It is an examination that I have to do on a daily basis.  Because if I forget what my true image is supposed to be, I can get caught up in trying to create a false image of myself to please others.  What image do you have of yourself?  It's a question that we should all ask on a daily basis.

Peace and Love,

Rev. Mike


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Thursday, April 1, 2010

Sho Baraka's New Album Lions and Liars

I picked this album up on Tuesday and have been listening to it nonstop.  Please pray for the entire Reach Records organization and continue to support Christian rap.


Official Press Release
Thats right Sho Baraka's Lions & Liars is available in stores now! Featuring Lecrae, JAMM, Trip Lee, Tedashii and many more. Pick it up your copy at Walmart w/bonus tracks for only $9.99

Also available at:  Family Christian, LifeWay, Berean, and Mardel Christian stores
Deluxe versions are available here. There are five versions to choose from.
For more information on Sho Baraka visit
For promos and snippets go here

Here's the first video from the album. 

And just because I haven't put up any music in a while, here is D.J. Official featuring J.A.Z & Magellan.

This is from the Entermission Album.