Last weekend Cecil and I took a road trip. As a Father’s Day gift, I purchased tickets to the Houston Astros baseball game against the Cleveland Indians. If you know Cecil AT ALL, you know he is a HUGE baseball FANATIC. Now of course his favorite team is the Texas Rangers and they are who he follows. However, one of his dreams is to see a game in every Major League Ballpark. If I can, I will help make that dream come true. So our quest began.
|Cecil in front of Minute Maid Park, Where the Astros Play|
We did a few other things while we were in Houston. We went to the Houston Aquarium, and we visited some family in the area. Cecil’s brother is the pastor of First Baptist Church of Clute, TX. We had a great time with them too!
|Me and an Eel....Nasty|
|Cecil and a Puffer fish|
|Cecil, Lyndon, (Cecil's brother) and Anne (Lyndon's wife)|
I am leaving out one thing that to me was the highlight of the weekend. After the baseball game, we attended a concert by Third Day, a Christian band.
|Mac Powell and Third Day|
What an amazing event! Not because I was seeing Mac Powell and the other members of Third Day in real, life! AND Only 20 rows in front of me! But because I was being led in true worship to my Heavenly Father! Because the man in front of me leading us loves my Jesus just like I do. And his purpose there was to share Jesus with all the people gathered in that ballpark. If there were some who did not know Him on a personal level, Mac was willing to tell them about Him right there. For those of us who know Jesus, Mac invited us to get to know Him better and to tell others. Then we just praised Jesus for who He is and what He has done for us! Wow! I don’t know about you, but THAT makes for a pretty awesome weekend in my book.
One of the things Cecil and I love to do as we travel, is read. We choose a book and I read as he drives. So fun, it allows us to talk about it as we go along and I get to use my own inflections and interpretations, instead of just listening. This trip we started a book it is “I AM SECOND” by Doug Bender and Dave Sterrett. This book is full of stories of people who have discovered that we cannot live the abundant life until we fully turn our lives over to Jesus Christ, putting Him first and acknowledging “I AM SECOND”! You can also find these stories at Iamsecond.com. I want to encourage you to check out some of the stories at the website, but to also find the book. Whether you are a Christian or not, it will impact your life for Jesus.
If you don’t know about “I AM SECOND”, let me tell you just a bit about them. It is a ministry founded by the chairman of Interstate Batteries, Norm Miller. He felt like God was calling him to start some thing based on the verse John 12:32.
John 12:32 And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.
Norm got together with some business associates and shared his burden. Together they came up with the following concept. Ordinary people willing to “lend their names and stories” so that others can see that through real life and real situations, God can give you peace and purpose. These people are known as “Seconds”. Though some are well-known, others are just like you and me. All “Seconds” have the same goal. That as one watches or reads his or her story, that person will be able to relate to the struggle, they will see their need of Jesus, and turn to Him, just as the “Second” did.
John 10:10 “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” (ESV)
I want to leave you with a synopsis of 2 of these stories. Hopefully to entice you to watch their films and get this book! So I will try to give you like a trailer. Haha
Brian “Head” Welch-
If I know my audience like I think I do, most of you have NO clue who this person is. “Head” was the co-founder and lead guitarist of the band KORN. If you still don’t know who I’m talking about, it’s ok, it just means you have not been a part of the heavy metal, rock or what is called nu metal scene over the past 15-20 years. Don’t despair, I don’t think you’ve missed anything. hahaha
Anyway, once “Head” picked up a guitar and began to play, that was his passion. He new that was the only thing he wanted to do in life. He and a friend made that dream come true. But, like many rock stars, “Head” got involved with drugs, alcohol, sex and other things that typically come along with that lifestyle. The thing was he had something nagging at him, 2 things really. First of all, “Head” had daughter in California that he never saw. He hated this and knew his little girl needed a dad. Second, he didn’t understand how he could have all he ever dreamed of and still be miserable. He went to church with his realtor and accepted Christ. Because he was a junkie, he went home and did crystal meth. After he snorted a line he looked up to heaven and asked God to search his heart. He told God he didn’t want to do drugs anymore. At that point “Head” surrendered to God. The next day he threw out all his drugs. He says in that moment of surrender “God changed me”. I love this story! This is a miracle of Jesus’ love for the unlovable.
I have left SO much out please watch the video.
Daniel, like so many unhappy, empty, searching teenagers, turned to drugs. He went to school and became a mechanic. He was successful at his job, but he was disgusted with his life. One night he wanted out of life. So while being drunk and high, Daniel sped down the highway in a car. All of a sudden, a billboard stopped him. Ironically it was a man he used to look up to, and now hated. It was Brian “Head” Welch. When “Head” was with Korn, Daniel could relate to him and his music. But now “Head” had left Korn and the band was no more. According to what Daniel heard, “Head” found God. He felt like that was a lame excuse for quitting rock and roll music. Then Daniel noticed the words on the billboard, “I AM SECOND”. He knew it had to be religious, but he had to find out for himself. So Daniel drove home, typed in the web address and began to watch “Head’s” story. He watched it over and over again. He cried. It was Daniel’s story, his life, so out of control. He knew he wanted that life. So Daniel went to church. He felt like the preacher was talking directly to him. The preacher spoke on Psalms 92:7.
Psalms 92:7 that though the wicked sprout like grass and all evildoers flourish, they are doomed to destruction forever;
Daniel knew that he was “the wicked” and an “evildoer”. He knew he was doomed to destruction. Two days later someone from the church called and wanted to meet with Daniel. He agreed, but while he was still on the phone he remember the heroine in the refrigerator. He couldn’t decide, the heroine or the door? Daniel finally grabbed his keys and walked out the door. He went to the church, met with the man, and accepted Jesus! From that point forward Daniel’s life has been changed. He now lives for Jesus.
I’m sorry to say that Daniel’s story is not on the I AM SECOND website. In order to see it in its entirety you must read the book.
I don’t know about you, but the one thing I get out of that amazing story of redemption is that as a Christian, we NEVER KNOW who is watching us, or what our story will do for someone. So follow what God tells you to do and let him worry about the rest!
So I challenge you this week to share your story with someone. It doesn’t have to be how your were saved necessarily. Maybe share a spiritual turning point in your life. Let’s see what God does with our stories when we live as “Seconds”.
Living in Grace,