East Coast Extreme Tour 2014 Was a Success – Thanks to You!

Settled in at home after finishing the 4 Month Extreme Tour / Mission Trip 2014.  All I can say is….Wow.  The impact made in our country, our communities and the lives of those around us was wonderful.  Here is a video for all our supporters.  This video is just a Glimpse of the past 4 months.  Enjoy it, share it but most of all the hope is that it will inspire you to touch the lives of those right here in your very own communities.   The realty is every city, town, bar or street we visited was exactly the same.  1000’s of people who despite living in the United States…have never heard the Gospel, have never been truly loved.  The Mission Field is right in front of us, we are simply called to go and love people.

Back in the saddle.

After a week to visit the family I am back on the Extreme tour.  It was great to see the family after being away for so long and even harder to say goodbye again.  Very glad to have family, friends and super fans that support the Driven Mission.

Right now, Lafayette GA is the place to be and will be making my way down to the Hot and Muggy state of Florida.  Looking forward on seeing many more lives affected and changed during the last 5 weeks of the Extreme Tour. I promise to give everyone the full report of the entire adventure in November 2014 when the tour is completed and I am settled back in.  Until then please continue to pray for the ministry.  Big hugs to everyone….you know who you are! 

 

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Your Adversity for someone else’s blessing?

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Still going strong on the EXTREME TOUR! We are reaching out to the lost by first demonstration Gods Love and then sharing Gods love. We recently visited Pikeville, KY and just headed on up to Norwalk, OH. Pikeville was amazing. Several people experienced Christ’s love through the Extreme Ministry. Also big thanks to Grace Fellowship church who took us in for several days. We are very thankful for them all.

After service at Grace Fellowship, a woman began telling me her story. She went through years of torment starting in Elementary School, through High School and early adult years. She was ridiculed for everything in her life including weight, looks and even the cloths she wore. Her self-worth took a very big hit and she was extremely depressed before she found the love of Christ in her life. After that, it took her a long time to learn how to use her testimony and experiences to help teens and children who struggle with similar experiences.

Although what really caught my attention was when she mentioned a particular man who ridiculed her tremendously her whole life.   Surprisingly, he gave his life to Christ several years ago and felt obligated to contact her and apologize for his horrid treatment of her over the years.   He even went on further to explain that his testimony to others was, in fact, that he was a horrible guy in school and in his adult years all because of his very own hurts and self-worth issues.

I thought to myself, Wow…look what God did there.   However, I could tell by her facial expressions that his apology was not something she received and she still held on to bitterness toward him. She said she “Forgave” him in the “Christian Sense” I guess. But she never really let it go. Even though she claimed to use her forgiving heart and trauma to help others through their adversity, she never really forgave him and it was visible on her face throughout the conversation. Yes, she understood Christ’s love for her, but she was still working through the pain and she could not see the Blessing that she could provide for others.

At this time, she paused and waited for me to respond (after listening for 10 minutes with no break).   I felt like she wanted me to say, I’m sorry….that must have been hard.   Or maybe she wanted to hear….well it’s understandable that you would still be upset with him.   Or maybe she just wanted a hug. I felt like she needed a bit more clarity and so I spoke.

“Wow that is amazing.   God knew that you were made in his image…a strong person that could handle persecution for so many years.   Not only that, the persecution that you went through was actually more for the bully’s benefit than for your benefit.   I’m saying that this was a good thing, but what I see is that God used your strong will and helped you through all of that so that one day, that man who teased you for so long would have an amazing testimony that would be able to reach others who may be treating others just as poorly. It is much like Saul who persecuted Christians for so long but then became one of the biggest advocates of Christ in his time.  What’s also neat is you are using your experience to lift others up as well.”

With that she burst in to tears and held me tight. She said she never saw it that way and you could see her face light up. She was filled with Pride and thanked me for providing a fuller understanding of why God allowed that to happen. It was something to be seen for sure.

Even today I don’t know how those words came from my mouth but they seemed to touch a person’s life at just the right time. Praise God.

As Christians we tend to believe that we go through persecution so that we will receive a blessing or that we are being trained for something really big in the future. I do not believe that is always the case. I believe that many times we go through persecution or adversity so that others may receive a blessing or become a power house for God. We are to rejoice in their blessing and rejoice in the fact that God utilizes us to make that blessing possible for someone else.

Not buying it? Well I think we all agree that Christ is the ultimate image of love and blessings. Christ himself came and suffered…for whose benefit? Clearly not God’s….because he does not need us…we need him. Yet he went through all that suffering and pain for one purpose only…so that you would receive the blessing of salvation on the cross. Are you taking joy in the fact that you are a part of God’s plan even when others receive the blessings?

Thoughts – Please share them on this page!

Argue with G-D today?

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#ExtremeTour14

Argue with God today

Wonderful conversations were had at the Bridge Church in Schenectady today.   One woman this morning was telling us that when she receives a word from God, she never questions the directive ever and goes with it with unfailing faith.

I think the exact statement was, “I may not understand, but I do it and never question it cause’ it’s from God”.

This statement seemed okay at first but I was compelled to disagree with what she just said.   While that sort of faith is awesome the latter part of it I believe leaves us stagnant in our growth and our ability to ministry to others. Being obedient is surely what we should do initially. When we are called to GO and move in a new direction, for sure…faith leads the way.

However, in scripture I find that it is ok to ask WHY during and after we have set the wheels in motion of faith. If we don’t ask WHY we can become frustrated, angry, bitter, and quite possibly destroy the great blessings that are going to be poured out.   We may also become burned out so to speak on a ministry. We then find ourselves walking in faith yet are mumbling to our friends on the side that the situation is SOOO BAD. ”But it’s for the Lord” we say with undertones of sarcasm. Yeah…who would be motivated to attend that guys church right?

Discussion the outcome, purpose or the difficulty you are going through is different than disobedience. Keep moving forward and be obedient but it is ok to ask for clarity and WHY. For those out there thinking…well ….argue with GOD that sounds foolish. Surly you have read that those who argued with God, even if they were men/women of GOD only receive a partial blessing. To that I say, Yes the better way thing to say is “have a discussion” with God in prayer rather than argue, but it did get your attention.   The point is this, it is always valuable to gain a solid understanding of WHY. WHY will give you a deeper understand of Gods will in your life? Knowing why will allow you to pour into others and will better equip you for God’s blessings in your life?

The Book of Job is a great example of this. Job lost everything for what frankly seemed like a bet from Satan at the time. Through it all he questioned Gods motives but stayed faithful to God. In the end he gained full clarity through his constant pursuit of Gods plan and purpose for his life and ultimately received greater blessings then before.

Does something seem unfair? Are you feeling like your circumstance is not right? Then today, right now you need to have a discussion with God on WHY. It’s called it prayer, reading the word and fellowship with fellow believers.

The next adventure is now!

EXTREME TOUR

Woweeee! Driven has finished the The Great Commission Tour in the Northeast. What a time. During the tour we were able to visit many of our friends that have supported the DRIVEN ministry for so many years. We saw old faces and lots of new face. We had a very memorable time and hope you did to. Thank you does not say enough.

So what’s next? Something….Extreme????

We are officially announcing that DRIVEN is on the EXTREME TOUR – East Coast 2014 now until October 2014.   What is the Extreme tour?

The Extreme Tour began as a grassroots project of “The Extreme”; a cultural outreach project started by Ted Bruun in 1994. The purpose of The Extreme Tour is to use Extreme Sports and Music Events, held in communities to reach at-risk and counter culture youth with services and resources that would assist them in making positive, as well as healthy decisions for a successful life. The Extreme Tour events are Extreme Sports and Music Events aimed at a mainstream market, and held in mainstream venues and settings. Over the past 20 years, the Extreme Tour has grown exponentially, moving far beyond the rural Idaho communities now visiting over 100 communities each year in the United States and is reaching out internationally as well.

DRIVEN visited the EXTREME TEAM during the OBJECTIVE in Nashville a few weeks back. What we discovered was a movement. Yes a movement of Godly men and woman music warriors reclaiming each city for Christ.  This is not just a one night concert in a city….oh no.   This is a two day event where we “Invade” the communities in need the night before, love the people there, sharing Gods unending love and then celebrating that the next day with Music and Extreme Sports. Then we connect them with the local bodies of Christ directly to continue their new walk of faith in Christ.   My Gosh its Awesome and we were able to catch a glimpse of this during our 4 days in Nashville.

So what now? Driven is officially Musicianaries for the next 4 months utilizing music, teaching and the sound equipment donated over the years to support the entire east coast tour team.   Will it be hard….yes.   Will we miss our families….oh boy yes.   We will need the support of our fan base to lay down a Road of prayer for safety and support…you betcha. Will it be worth it….no doubt.

Continue to follow us on Facebook as we travel over 8000 miles throughout the Eastern United States spreading the Gospel to those who have not heard it…yes even in the US there is a great need. What a blessing to be used for Gods purpose…….for his Glory not our own.

We will make every effort to keep up pictures and stories of lives changed on Facebook. Keep checking in and don’t miss a thing.

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EXTREME TOUR – JUNE 2014

Hello everyone.  It has been some time since our last post and for good reason.   DRIVEN is booked for most of our available dates of The Great Commission Tour, Spring 2014.   We still have a few slots in late May and very early June available for booking, but check this out.  There is another Tour Coming in June 2014 and its called the EXTREME TOUR.   The EXTREME TOUR mission is all about reaching the lost, loving up on people and then getting our new friends connected with our local body of believers just like you. The cool part is they use Music and Extreme Sports as the medium to connect, so COOL!   The EXTREME TOUR is exactly the type of Mission that can positively impact our local communities.

You may not realize this, but the Capital Area NY is the Number 1 “Post-Christian” City in the country.  This part of the country needs more healing than most and its time to make a positive change.  DRIVEN is supporting THE EXTREME TOUR and we want to bring the tour to the Capital Area for the Month of June 2014, but we need your help.  We need churches like yours that can partner with DRIVEN and the EXTREME TOUR to bring them to the Capital Region and as many of the surrounding cities.  We always say we want to make an impact, reach the lost and make a change. What better way then connecting the lost with our local Church Families through Music and Extreme Sports.

Contact the EXTREME TOUR or DRIVEN today by following one of the links below.  Together with all our church bodies we will positively impact the Capital Region!

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The Great Commission Spring Tour 2014

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Only a few dates left, contact DRIVEN today for your chance to have DRIVEN at your church/center/event this spring 2014

Thank you, thank you and thank you again to all the churches, families and mentors that have supported Driven over the years.  It is because of your support and generosity that Driven has become what it is today.  A growing ministry dedicated to sharing the good news, encouraging others and celebrating Gods influence in our lives.

Today Driven is officially announcing its Great Commission EP Release Spring Tour 2014.

We have several performances scheduled that we will begin posting in the next few days and weeks but here is the cool part so listen up.  We are opening up the tour to everyone. That’s right. Contact Driven now.  If our tour schedule allows  we will visit your local church or center for a full performance experience!  The sooner you contact us the better.  We have already pre-booked several events and available dates are already filling quickly.

By popular demand we will have acoustic style sets for a more intimate coffee house type settings.  Our kick off event for this tour will be an acoustic performance on March 24th, 7PM in Broadalbin at the popular Pizza Supreme.

Wait,there is more.  “More you say?” “Yes I say.”   We have new songs and many events will feature some of your favorite local christian artists opening for Driven.  And a big way of saying thank to everyone….all performance will be no charge for your attendance.  So come out, bring the teens, grab the old ladies and pack up the babies to where everyone goes…a faith Driven Show!  We can’t wait to see you!

 

Love and Asking the Right Questions: Part 3 of 3

Conclusion to our series titled:  Love and Asking the Right Questions

We left off with the question of how does one grow when there is so much “sickness” and “Lack of time” in a church?   How does one get the support and guidance they need when leadership and Pastors are not readily available?    The answer is Love and asking the right questions.  What does Scripture say about Love?  What are the right questions to ask?

First let’s see what God says about love.

WaterMatthew 22:36-40  “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”  Jesus replied: “Love the lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and all your mind.’   This is the first and greatest commandment.  And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’  All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

What? We are to Love our Neighbor with the same amount of zeal as we do our selves.  Whenever this piece of scripture is read someone always says…”well what if I don’t love myself?”  We are not talking about self-esteem, we are talking about Love.  Yes there are some things you may not like about yourself but you do Love yourself.  Not buying it? Let’s be honest, you love yourself enough to buy food, clothes or simply bathing yourself.  Would you bath someone you did not love? So yes…you love yourself.

But how does one love a church of sinners?  Furthermore, how does one love a church of sinners the same way we love our selves?  Let’s look to the most used passage on love.

1 Corinthians 13:4-7 Love is patient and kind.  Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude.  It does not demand its own way.  It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged.  It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out.  Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

Wow…endures through every circumstance?  Not some things but every circumstance.  “But what if they”…STOP…every circumstance……”but they never”….STOP… every circumstance!  What happens though is we focus on all the things that are going wrong and don’t seem right.  We begin asking questions like….”When will that person ever change”, “when will they have time for this thing”, “why is there not enough X”, “When are they going to get it right”.  With these types of questions we become more and more bitter.  We begin keeping a record of wrongs instead of rejoicing when truth wins out.  We become jealous of one church member getting more attention from leadership.

If you really want to love, if you really want to see change then start asking the right questions and start taking some personal accountability. Live a life by the Spirit.

Galatians 5: 13-15
Life by the Spirit

13 You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love. 14 For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”15 If you bite and devour each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other.

This brings us the conclusion of the message.  What are the right questions?

If you see someone struggling, don’t ask “when will they change” rather ask “How can I help a struggling Brother or Sister”.   If a ministry is lacking don’t ask “when will they get their act together”, instead ask “How can I support/serve this ministry so it is successful”.  Instead of “why are there not enough leaders to take care of the church needs”, ask “how can I help meet our neighbor’s needs”?   The only way to see real change, to see success…. the only way to love your neighbor is to show personal accountability and become a part of the solution by serving them.  That’s right! The grass is actually green where you water it!  Stop complaining, pick up a hose and water the grass if you want to see results.

When we all start asking the right questions and when we all begin taking personal accountability is when we begin to see the lives around us change in a positive way.  The amazing part, when you start to ask the right questions and take action…. it is infectious.  Others will want to be a part of it.  It will inspire others to do the same, relationships will mend and lives will be changed forever.

 

Thanks for following this series, please leave your comments.