Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Can we really change the course of things?

I got to spend some time today with my four year old nephew Leland. I found myself wondering what can I do to keep Leland busy? (He's got a lot of energy!) So, knowing a stream was nearby, we headed that way and I remembered something I loved to do as a kid - building dams in streams. We came to a spot where the water could go one of two ways. Immediately I felt the challenge. If we build a dam on the one side, we can make the water go down the other side! My nephew, being too young to question my enthusiasm for a ridiculous project jumped right in with me. We started grabbing rocks and tossing them into a long pile across the stream.

All of this got me thinking - many of us see our culture heading in a bad direction and we wonder is it really possible to change the course of things? Can the church make any difference at all? Well, the process of building this dam gave me a few ideas about that...

1) Changing the course of the stream was going to take a LOT of rocks. In fact, we needed as many rocks as we could get. We needed mega-rocks, small rocks, even seemingly insignificant pebbles were going to be important.

2) No one rock, not even a bunch of large rocks, could stem the flow of water alone. The large rocks needed the small rocks (even if they didn't think they did).

3) Rocks of all shapes, colors, and sizes were needed. If we only used small rocks, it would take forever to get the job done. But with large and small rocks, the dam came together quickly.

4) Even dead things could be recycled to serve the purpose (dead leaves, sticks, unidentifiable things)

If we are going to change the course of culture in America, we are going to need EVERYBODY! Large churches, small churches, in between churches, even dead churches! No one is insignificant. No one is unnecessary. Every believer, every church has a role and a part to play.

My nephew and I took great satisfaction in seeing the water rise behind our dam and flow into the other side of the creek bed. We had made a difference. And the church can make a difference. If we all realize our world needs Jesus and we need each other to take Jesus to our world!

Monday, October 03, 2011

"Courageous" Movie Had A Great Opening Weekend

I have been pretty passionate about this film for several reasons - 1) I love youth ministry and nothing will help kids grow in Christ more than if their fathers become spiritual leaders in their homes. 2) The movie is very well done - it's funny, it's got action, and it's entertaining. 3) I want to see more good movies made with Christ-centered messages!

So here's what Box Office Mojo said about Courageous' opening weekend...

"Sherwood Pictures' Courageous was the only one of the new releases to improve from estimates to actuals, and it passed 50/50 in the process to take fourth place. The movie debuted to $9.1 million from just 1,161 theaters for a strong per-theater average of $7,806. That's up from the studio's last movie Fireproof ($6.8 million), though the average was off just a bit. The opening ranks fifth all-time for a Christian movie, and only trails The Passion of the Christ and the three Narnia movies. Courageous scored a rare "A+" CinemaScore, and the audience was 53 percent female and 77 percent over the age of 25."

Courageous was the #4 movie of weekend! Making the Top 10 at the box office is a big deal, so making the top 5 is awesome! Finally, here are some comments from people in our area who saw the movie...

The movie courageous a must see – Tom Snyir, Sutersville

You've GOT to see the movie "Courageous"!!!!!!.....bring your tissues, don't say I didn't warn you! ;) - Shelby Young, Irwin

Just got back from Courageous! What a great movie! And I got to see it with my favorite people- my family – Kristy McCoy Clements, Uniontown

Two thumbs up! :) – Amy O’Brien Craig, Greensburg

Courageous is such a good movie! I recommend it to everyone. – Patrick Benjamin Slagle, Uniontown

Just saw COURAGEOUS...I ran out of good!!! – Kerri Pellicione, Greensburg

"Courageous" was so very life changing!...Please see! It is an awsome movie! – Jodi Lee Barnes Cottom, McKeesport

I saw it today! Don't miss it! – Charles King, Dawson

“If you are a dad, I challenge you to go see the movie,"Courageous". I just did. My impression: Life Changing! Go on, go see it! I dare you! – Guy LeVeille, Irwin

It was an awesome movie!! the 7:30 showing at Lowes Theater in the waterfront was sold out too!!! Changing lifes!! – Jonathan Edwards

Really enjoyed "Courageous" eventhough I had trouble hearing it over my wife's crying. It will get those tears flowing... – Drew Patrick, Harrison City

COURAGEOUS is an awesome movie - if you haven't seen it - GO and experience it!! - Bo Pratt, Irwin

Just got home from seeing the movie, what an amazing film! I highly recommend it. – Sharon Ross, Greensburg

We saw the movie "Courageous" with some of our church friends and I encourage everyone to see it....what a fantastic movie! Nancy Pinon Smith, Melcroft

What an awesome movie!!!! Super i give it 10 stars!! As the wife of a police officer its finally great to c a movie tht shows not only thr daily struggles of being a dad but also men who really love the lord and risk there lives to protect us and be right for there families!!!!! Love this!! – Kristy Bell, Uniontown

Courageous gets an A, GO SEE IT., Mat Slagle, Uniontown

LOVED the COURAGEOUS movie!!! I plan on seeing it again soon with my kids and some other families! – Jennifer O’Brien, Elizabeth

Courageous" is a great movie! It was really nice to see a movie that is true to life, very funny and deeply moving, while at the same time also clearly communicating the greatest message of all, the good news of Jesus Christ. Very glad our church took the risk of buying out a whole showing in the local theater to help bring the movie to our town. We filled the whole theater and had a great time watching the film. If you haven't seen it, be sure to get to it when you can. It's definitely worth the time and effort.s a great movie! - Pastor Jack Herman, Uniontown

Tuesday, September 06, 2011

There's no one like Jesus!

Check out this AMAZING video about Jesus! I don't know who made this, but illustrating and scoring old sermons is genius. This reminds me of why I'm a Christian. Please watch it!

Friday, September 02, 2011

A Prayer Letter from Travis & Judy Deans

Check out our latest quarterly prayer letter! And thank you for your prayers!

Would your church consider supporting Teens For Christ?

Would you church consider adopting Teens For Christ as a local mission?

Dear friends,
Teens For Christ exists to assist local churches in reaching and discipling teenagers for Jesus Christ. We've been around for over 50 years and are doing more now than we've ever done. Here's what we do...

YOUTH MINISTRY BULLETIN BOARD - a website that provides 1500 churches in western Pennsylvania with information about upcoming youth events and activities in western Pennsylvania.

YOUTH MINISTRY CONSULTATIONS and TRAINING - we meet with youth leaders in churches to help them examine their youth ministries and help them strategize for more effective ministry. We also sponsor and help promote youth ministry training events.

YOUTH MINISTRY NETWORKS - we facilitate youth ministry networks in Fayette and Westmoreland Counties and we promote youth ministry network in Somerset, Allegheny, Beaver, Washington, and other counties.

9 MONTH MISSION TRIP COACHING - we equp students to share their faith and reach out to their friends at school

ADOPT-A-SCHOOL - we do presentations for churches encouraging them to 'adopt' the schools in their communities

All of these things are made possible by friends, churches, and businesses who support us financially. Please check out to see a list of churches that already support us. If you want more information, please give me a call at 724.322.1130. Thank you so much!

Until Every Student Hears, Travis Deans