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mx more :: 2 Simple Tips to Better Disciple Millennials

A lot of churches have a hard time reaching Millennials in their communities. Sometimes, it just feels like church culture doesn’t jive with Millennial culture.

Church culture is supposed to be about service, and many Millennials seem selfish. Church culture is based on belief in God, and many Millennials don’t believe in God (the Christian one, anyway).

I’m a Millennial, and as I’ve spent much of my life actively participating in the local church, I have been blessed by a number of wise people who have taken me by the hand and shown me the way to rightly understand God and become more like Jesus. In these people, I have noticed at least two common denominators, and I wanted to make note of them for any of you who may be trying to lead Millennials spiritually.

Here are two brief tips to be a bit more effective at reaching and leading Millennials:
This is not to say it is wrong to convict someone of sin. Obviously, if you’re discipling someone or leading them spiritually in another way, an important part of that relationship is going to be recognizing and repenting of sin.

1. Coach before you condemn.

What I mean to say is this: instead of approaching sin with a condemnatory tone, try a tone with less contempt, perhaps a “coaching” tone. Consider yourself a “supporter” rather than an “accuser.”

Inherent in the idea of a coach or a supporter is the desire for the person you are leading to succeed. Such is not the case for one who is an accuser, condemning others because of their sin.

As you lead a Millennial toward trusting in Christ or becoming more like him, do so with a tone that reminds him or her that you want the best for them.
As you’re leading someone to believe in or become more like Christ, you will necessarily have to provide some clear, direct instruction.

2. Ask before you tell.

For instance, if you’re discipling a young man who has made an idol of his work, you would be wise to direct him toward finding his worth in Christ, not his paycheck or his prestige on the org chart.

However, as you recognize the idolatry in the young man’s heart, you may be more effective if you approach the situation inquisitively rather than commandingly.

For example, perhaps the young man was denied a promotion and was subsequently cursing his employer he was so angry.

Leading questions to approach the heart of the issue such as, “Why do you think you responded the way you did?” may be more effective than, “Being angry because you didn’t get the promotion is a sin and you need to repent.” You may need to say that second statement at some point, but it may be best to first try to lead the person you’re leading to that conclusion him- or herself.

These are simple thoughts, not profound by any means, that may help you better connect with Millennials as they live, work, and play in your communities.

- Chris Martin

http://bit.ly/2jDPUIA

Chris is a Millennial Evangelical working as an Author Development Specialist at LifeWay Christian Resources.

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mx moment :: make a difference

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mx moment :: don’t forget

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mx moment :: prayer heart

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mx more :: open canvas

Catch me as I’m fading, secretly completing everything spinning deep inside me. Confusion is the illusion, trust issues is my confession. Walls I built up high with the gate locked. You wouldn’t know cause you stopped knocking, stopped knocking. Silent, coming and going…

Possibilities that felt unlikely when everything I knew was far from me. High off 2015, hung over memories, living a dream, stuck up in the clouds until I fell down…damaged and broken. Like, everything in my life wasn’t working.

Depression and social anxiety had me by the neck, meanwhile, I hung up the mic like it was nothing, later on realizing it was meant to do something…meant to do something…storytelling for the ones who are lost and lonely…sitting alone thinking, if only, if only.

Music saved me when nobody had me. Message in the lyrics that kept me going, like a flame it keeps burning, keeping me warm when I was left out alone in the cold with nothing to hold.

Feel me, ignore me, it no longer hurts me. Try to burn me or roast me but it won’t hit me cause I’m free, not captive but free and you’ll never get to me.

Open canvas on display for all to see, my life is an art gallery, catch my soul in the beat that I’m making and my heart singing and rhyming in the words that I’m writing. Shifting colors, blurry lines, bleeding lights in the photographs that I’m creating.

always working, always climbing, always striving to be the best that I can be. The one that I was meant to be. Original not seasonal. Buried in the past, I was brought back to life. Bad company corrupts good character. Real love comes from above, always climbing, always thriving, conquering the fears that are no longer hiding.

You can judge me but, I won’t let it get to me because I am free, filled with positivity and you’ll never get to me.

Life on the streets, honesty my best policy, text me, you’ll miss me. My calling is trapped in the media, my mission in the communities with the Twenty Somethings…always moving and never stopping, enemies secretly watching and waiting to knock me down. Always taking heat like it’s a race that I need to be competing in.

Open Canvas with all eyes on it, always moving, never stopping, enemies patiently waiting in the corner to knock it off. I am who I am, introvert meets extrovert that’s me. Losing followers on a daily, annoying ain’t she? Stupid videos she keeps making, she says she loves Jesus but, I heard her listening to Yeezy, and Eminem well that just feels a bit shady…ask me to put on a show and I’ll leave you hanging, ask me to be who I am and I’ll leave a standing full room clapping.

I was not made to please but to be the person I was created to be. If God wasn’t real I’d be dead in a casket, if prayer was fake for goodness sake my walls would survive this earthquake.

My story is like a gallery full of blank walls and paintings, hanging and some broken from all the madness and hurting.

Life spinning in circles, living life full with no rehearsal.

always out late, never goes on a date. Well, this ain’t right…I was called to be a leader and to make those around me to feel like they matter, smiling full of laughter. Music being my medicine and dancing my therapy.

Everytime someone tells me I can’t, I then become determined to prove them wrong. Because you ain’t got nothing on me, nothing you say will defeat me. You shot me, but I forgave you, still loved you before you pulled that trigger and it should’ve killed me quicker.

When I was all alone left with nothing, music helped remind me that I was something that I was alive and living and breathing. That your story is something worth telling. Maybe a lone survivor but a hope provider.

- Emily Muse

http://instagram.com/ylimemariee

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mx moment :: veterans day

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mx moment :: last hope

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mx moment :: smile

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mx moment :: trust in the dark

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mx moment :: yes or no

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mx more :: serve a greater purpose

My dear friend, Julie, and I recently started a Bible study together through the book of Philippians. We’ve been reading throughout the week, jotting down thoughts and notes, then sharing them with each other when we meet. We’ve only been doing it for a few weeks, but I can’t even begin to say how wonderful it has been. It’s been a long while since I’ve been surrounded by the sort of thoughts and atmosphere that come naturally with studying the Word of God with a fellow believer, and in the past few months, I’ve definitely felt the consequences of being a little disconnected.

So over the few weeks that we’ve been studying, I’ve been writing down my honest thoughts in a black moleskin journal, then writing down my prayer to God in that moment. And when I feel upset or distracted, I go back and read my written words to God from previous days, and it is so refreshing to see Him working in my life already. He is changing me and my thoughts and my desires for my life and aligning them with His will. And it is great, so I decided I should share my thoughts here.

I am no expert on the book of Philippians or any book in the Bible for that matter, but I am a disciple of Jesus, and my job is share the gospel. So here is just a little bit of what I’ve been learning throughout my study with Julie…

Philippians is Paul’s letter to the people at Philippi, and as he is writing it from prison, he is thanking God for where he is.

In Chapter 1, Paul writes, “And I am sure of this, that He who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ… and it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.”

A recurring theme throughout the book is that times of trial can serve a greater purpose, and if we hold onto God’s word and promises, He will provide us with something greater than anything we leave behind.

As Julie and I were talking one morning last week, we called attention to fact that many, many people have come to Christ because of Paul’s letter of Philippians, and how great that is. But in my head, I have (several times) posed the question: “Couldn’t Paul have just written the letter to them from the comfort of his home? He could still say how God provides for us in all circumstances and stuff, but did he really have to be in prison?” And each time, I remember why it’s so important that he’s in prison. In verse 12, he writes, “I want you to know, brothers, that what has happened to me has really served to advance the gospel, so that it has become known throughout the whole imperial guard and to all the rest, that my imprisonment is for Christ. And most the the brothers, having become confident in the Lord by my imprisonment, are much more bold to speak the word without fear.”

As I read, there are so many powerful and convicting words written in Philippians, and had Paul not been suffering in prison, and filled with the joy of the Lord to write this book, none of it would be in the Bible.

Chapter 1:23-26 says, “My desire is to depart and be with Christ, for that is far better. But to remain in the flesh is more necessary on your account. Convinced of this, I know that I will remain and continue with you all, for your progress and joy in the faith, so that in me you may have ample cause to glory in Christ Jesus, because of my coming to you again.”

I have been in such a pause mode of life for quite a while. I’ve felt so lonely, useless, unproductive and guilty. And in this time, I’ve written so many journal entries and songs and tried to write blogposts that accurately express my anger towards God and His lack of movement in my life. But, the truth is, all the while I’ve been wondering what/if God is up to anything good in my life, I’ve been searching for fulfillment and satisfaction in all the wrong places. I’m not angry because God isn’t making anything happen in my life, I’m angry because I’m too stubborn to trust Him and trust that He has something greater for me ahead of the foolish things that I need to leave behind me.

In every low valley of my life, God has always prevailed. He has won my heart back from wandering into sin time after time and has continually pulled me out of darkness and into His light. And that’s not to say that my wandering is useless. In fact, just the very opposite. God works all things for the good in each of our lives, but only if we choose to see it and follow Him back to where He wants to lead us, not where we want to go in our sinful flesh.

I lost so many friendships as a younger teenager because of my selfish heart and bossy mind. But if I hadn’t lost those friendships, I wouldn’t have learned the great value and privilege that comes with being someone’s friend. Even thought it’s still something a struggle with from time to time, I have had so many wonderful and flourishing friendships since then and I know I will continue to have many more in the future. And even now, in my current spell of loneliness, I am learning that patience is so important in life, especially when waiting on God. I believe whole-heartedly that He is working on me and trimming me to His exact liking, and when the time is right, He will fulfill all of the desires He has placed in me, whether it be here on earth, or in Heaven with Him one day. And either way, learning to be patient and learning to completely cast all of my cares and wants on Jesus and be fully dependent on Him, will benefit me greatly in the future, I have no doubt.

So while Paul is suffering in prison, God meets him there and fills him with joy in the Holy Spirit and words to write in his letter to Philippi. God speaking to His people through Paul served a much greater purpose than any pain Paul felt while enduring his imprisonment. How great is it that you and I serve this same God?

The pastor at my church recently said something that stuck with me about where he and the church staff feel God is leading them in an expansion of their currently bursting building, “If God has been faithful to us in the past, we believe He will be faithful to us in the present, and even more so in the future.” God already has a plan for each of our lives. Yes, we absolutely have free will to do whatever we please on this earth, but that is not the point.

The point of this life is to glorify God and bring His name and His truth into the light. When we are immersed in self-gratification, self-praise, self-beauty, self-positivity, it is only then that we loose sight of the purpose for our lives and become unsatisfied and confused as to why we are where we are.

That is where I have lived so many different times. I have worried so much what is going to happen with my life, whether it be seemingly silly things or serious desires that are not being met. Will my art and photography ever get noticed and will I ever become famous on Instagram? Will I ever make enough money to shop exclusively at Madewell? Will I ever get to travel over seas? Will I ever get married and feel the satisfaction and joy of marriage and raising a family? Even just typing each of those concerns out gets my mind racing in all the wrong ways.

This life that God has given me is wonderful. I am fortunate, smart, funny, talented, you name it. And it’s not just me. The life you live is wonderful too, no matter what your circumstances are. We are all humans capable of so much, and even when we think we suck or aren’t as pretty or artistic as our friends, we are all talented individuals. Similarly, the world is telling us women that we need to praise ourselves for how strong we are - how attractive we are and how much we’re capable of, despite what men think of us or what we think of ourselves. (Wowow. I could write a whole post about that sentence right there.) And it is so easy to get lost in ourselves and how great we think we are… But that is not the point of this life.

Imagine if the whole reason we are here is just to feel good about ourselves and make others feel good about themselves. It sounds like it would be nice, but honestly, we are drowning ourselves in positivity and self-love, and yet, this whole population is still unsatisfied and lonely. Even people to profess to be Christians.

God sent His son, Jesus, to this earth to save us from ourselves and give us a life with Him in Heaven. He didn’t come to save us so we could have a happy life on earth feeling great and cute and happy all the time.

In their song, This Beautiful Life, Colony House writes,

“What is the meaning of it all?
To fall in love, to make a life that’s calm and stable
Or just to find a place where I belong?

What in the world am I looking for?
What is the peace that I can find?
This longing for, I can’t ignore but am I able
To see the good and taste it on my tongue?

Well maybe I’m a part of something that’s bigger than me
Like I’m a page in a book in a library
And inside my heart there’s a dying part that’s always searching
 “Cause I know that there’s a place where I belong.”

That “place where I belong” that he mentions isn’t anywhere on this earth - it’s in Heaven with our Maker, God. Many of us are blessed and fortunate, but for those who feel we aren’t worth as much as the people who are rich and beautiful and happy here on this earth, there is still hope. Jesus did not intend for us to feel security in this world. We aren’t supposed to be satisfied by anything it has to offer. We have been created to desire more - we have been created to desire the face of Jesus and all that He can provide us with, which is an abundant life filled with His word and His hope that something greater lies ahead of us in Heaven.

Kaylee Banks

Instagram: @kayleecreates

http://bit.ly/2zcCx5Z

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mx moment :: love gives courage

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mx moment :: faith

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mx moment :: friends

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mx more ::  3 considerations while facing temptation

This summer, I have been leading the guys in our youth group through a study of James. It’s been a while since I took a deep dive into James, so it has been refreshing to see so much in the text that I hadn’t caught before.

Alongside reading the text itself, I have been reading Warren Wiersbe’s Be Mature commentary and it has been a delightful companion through the study.

His chapter on James 1:13-18 is called, “How to Handle Temptation.” What I love about Wiersbe’s chapter on handling temptation is that it isn’t just a pragmatic list of ways to prevent ourselves from sinning.

In instructing us about how to handle temptation and avoid falling into sin, Wiersbe doesn’t direct our thoughts inward—he directs our thoughts upward.

Below are Wiersbe’s three considerations while facing temptation with some of my own elaboration on his points.

1. Consider God’s Judgment.

Wiersbe identifies four stages of sin in James 1: desire, deception, disobedience, and death.

We see this so clearly in the Garden of Eden. The serpent taps into Adam and Eve’s desire to be like God and deceives them in such a way that they disobey, ultimately leading to death for not only themselves, but all of humanity to follow.

God created Adam and Eve and had intimate relationship with them in the Garden of Eden. They were good and he loved them. Even this first couple, declared good in their creation, were not exempt from the judgment of God.

What makes us think we would exempt from the just judgment of God should we be tempted into disobedience?

Unlike Adam and Eve, we did not enjoy intimacy with God from birth. But, in Christ, we can experience intimacy with God through re-birth.

As we face temptation, we must consider the judgment of God.

2. Consider God’s Goodness.

One of the ways Satan deceives us as we are face-to-face with temptation is making us think God is holding out on us.

You see this clearly in the Garden when Satan tells Eve that God doesn’t want them to eat from the tree because he knows that, if they do, they will become like him.

Satan likes to paint God as a sort of power-hungry ego-maniac that lives in constant fear of his creation overthrowing him from his throne.

This message is satanic to its core, isn’t it? What is more satanic than attempting to overthrow the rule of God?

Satan often tries to paint a picture of God he wishes were true, but is ultimately a hellish lie. Satan wishes God was afraid for his position as ruler over all creation, but God is not afraid of anyone, Satan or humans, orchestrating a coup to dethrone him.

God is a good Father who wants what is best for his children despite their frequent inability to see what “best” really is. Because of the brokenness that often blinds us from seeing what is true, Satan is able to twist our desires, deceiving us into believing that God withholds what we need out of fear.

God does not fear you, me, or Satan, and he gives us what is best for us. James 1:17 tells us, “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”

As we face temptation, we must consider the goodness of God.

3. Consider God’s Divine Nature Within.

In this point, Wiersbe does direct us, his readers, to look within, but he doesn’t tell us to look within to see how we might pull ourselves up by our bootstraps and avoid sin.

We must look within to see that, in our weakness, God has given those who believe the divine nature we need resist that which is evil and choose that which is upright and good.

The new birth we have when we trust that the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ is enough to save us from our sins indwells us with the Holy Spirit—the only way in which we are able to face temptation and walk away without it devouring us whole.

When we face temptation, we must look to God and what he has done before we consider ourselves and what we can do.

The Father is a good, just God who has given us the Holy Spirit to help us become more like his Son.

In the face of temptation don’t consider your strengths or weaknesses before you consider who God is and what he has done.

-Chris Martin

http://bit.ly/2gSnFEW

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mx moment :: revelation

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mx moment :: say no

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mx moment :: unseen

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mx moment :: patience and joy

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mx more :: independent, dependent and submitted

http://bit.ly/2yEqG2S

“Live as people that are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God.” - 1 Peter 2:16 (ESV)

We live in a dependent culture. We live in a “couple ” culture. As a 21 year old single girl living in the city, I’m often asked why I don’t have a boyfriend…for a long time I struggled with this myself . I struggled to believe that I could live a fulfilling life being single and then something changed.

Over this past summer I made a decision not to date anyone at all. I wanted to work through some issues in my own life before I welcomed someone else in.

I was so serious about this, that I willing accepted an agreement to not date all summer or pay my roommate $300…a steep sum for a college student living on her own. It was hard at first, but as I began to accept my single state and focus on my relationship with Christ it became easier and easier. I didn’t need a man to survive. I found that I could be happy on my own. As the summer went on, I grew to be more and more independent. I think independency gets a bad rap in our culture, especially in western christian culture. Independency is often related to rebellion, and rebellion is looked down upon. Dependency is looked down on too, we are supposed to be fully dependent on Christ and not on man.

But, how are we supposed to act if we are not rebellious or needy? I believe we were created to be independent and submitted. We willingly choose to be submitted to leaders. Our independency keeps us from finding our identity in man and his opinion of us, while our willful submission of Christ and the leaders He has put in our life keep us safe and free.

Summer has ended and I’ve won my bets, I can start dating again. But, to be completely honest , I’m not actively looking for a date, I am content. I am fulfilled freely choosing to make Christ the focus in my life, depending on Him, and submitting to the godly men and women He has in my life. I think the answer to a dependent culture is an independently submitted one…freely choosing to follow Christ in the freedom He won for us. When this becomes our perspective the need to be in a relationship, or accepted and loved by everyone we meet does not rule our thoughts and actions. We are free and Christ created us to be free.

Freely and fully alive Him.

Rock on,

Grace

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mx moment :: eager feet

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mx moment :: energy

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mx moment :: Details

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mx moment :: joy

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mx moment :: questions

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mx moment :: trouble

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mx moment :: Las Vegas

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mx moment :: confident

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mx more :: the struggle is real by chill aguilar

If you have been a believer long enough and can be honest to admit it, you will agree with me when I say the Christian walk is not a “wind sprint”. It’s more like a marathon race that can be long, tiring, cold, dark and lonely at times! People who have not ran the race or believers who have only been spectators afraid to get off the bench of life and get in the game, tend to think the Christian life is cake-walk filled with blue skies and butterflies sipping on a Starbucks coffee listening to Hillsong.

Maybe it’s easy for people who only go to church on Sundays and holidays…maybe it’s easy for the people who have never took a stand and truly lived what they believed.

Only the people that are in the race will understand how hard the Christian walk can be at times some people will never see the constant struggle.

They will never see the pain and suffering we will have to endure at times.

There is always a war for our soul. A daily battle between good and evil, a fight between the flesh and the spirit!

They do not see the Enemy that chases after us daily, trying to trip us up, pull us down and pull us back to our past! The bible says that the Enemy is like a roaring lion, constantly waiting to devour us. The struggle is real and we have to decide, daily, whom we are going to serve!

In life’s race, we have a choice to keep running toward the finish line or running backward towards the past. Which way are you going? Are we going to wake up and put on the new man or the new woman or are we going to wake up daily and put on the masks from our past?

Are we going to lace up the Nikes and just do it or are we going to stay a jaded cynic on the sidelines of life sipping on “HATERADE” discouraging all the new runners.

I get it, we all make some dumb choices in life we all can get “lost in the sauce.”

We all miss the mark at times. We fall short on our way to the finish line…but the good news is there is still HOPE, as long as your breathing! The race is not over yet! Understand this, God is not tripping on your mistakes and heartbreaks. He knows your heart and he will always see the best in us no matter what! He is the life coach to the broken, always making room for you and me on His team, always encouraging us to stay on the course. He will always stay running with you for He is with you always!

You just need to remember you are put here to “run your race”. Stop trying to run someone else’s race…stop letting people, friends, family, and religions rules that put you in fear, hold you down hinder your walk and make you feel like you are never going to be good enough.

Everyone struggles at sometimes during their Christian walk, just look at the Homeboy PAUL, he said, “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.” Romans 7:15

We all have choices that we have to make every morning when we roll out of bed, choices between the flesh and the spirit and it’s on us on what we choose to serve daily. But, know this whichever one you water and feed will grow…sometimes it can grow out of control.

One wants to see you WIN and one wants to see you LOSE!

One will give you LIFE more abundantly and the other one is a DEATH sentence.

So, yes my friends the “Christian walk” is not easy, it does get hard at times and yes you can feel like giving up or quitting but just don’t! LIFE may have hit you with a “sucker punch” and knocked the shout out of you, you may feel like laying down and dying but don’t because you’re brokenness is going to turn into breakthrough.

All the nights you cried yourself to sleep, all the times people talked behind your back, all the times you felt like giving up, all the promises people didn’t keep to you…every “struggle” you have been going through is just a stepping stone in life to get you where God is trying to get you to go.

While running this race we have to constantly remind and encourage ourselves to be of good cheer and never forget that God runs alongside with us pushing us to victory.

We also need to remember we are more than conquerors in Christ and when the road gets long and hard when you feel all alone remember that JESUS will never leave us or forsake us! He will not bail on us when times get tough like, some of our friends and family members have done to us in the past!

Be encouraged today, be inspired today, run your race even if you trip, even when you slow down to catch your breath at times just keep running your race, keep your eyes on the prize and never give up…

- Chill Aguilar

https://www.instagram.com/chillaguilar/

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Newsletter Fall 2017

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mx more :: remedy by ylimemariee

Heart bleeds out in symphonies, cause your my remedy, you were always there for me, pulled me in like it was nothing, it was something.

Vibing off of this energy, remedy, feelings alive inside of me, no more dead vibes, you remember those late night drives? 2016, Open canvas, Catch me as I’m fading, secretly contemplating everything spinning deep inside me. Confusion is the illusion, trust issues is my confession. Walls I built up high with the gate locked. But then you came in knocking…

Bleeding out midnight lights heart broken shattered all over these pavements, blind to reality…come alive in the city…starring blank face, with a locked up space wanting to be one with the sky, I was probably high off the life I had inside…Holding on by a thread, stress filled up in my head, couldn’t get out of bed.

Remedy, remedy it was far from me. Until you heard me, you saw me…I didn’t deserve it. You came in, you know my life was messy, my heart was not inside me, but you put the puzzle pieces back together, picked it back up and put it inside me. Zombified dead to this life, love came in. Prayers, you heard me screaming…you knew what I was needing, a remedy.

Singing again, picking up the pen again. This good life is not a commercial break, not be like wake up now we’re back to the main show, to the movie, were real life is living in a fantasy of what we want it to be, humanity stuck in a hole.

Took me a minute and then it hit me like good beats driving next to me, this good life isn’t temporary, not a dream that you can wake up from. It’s the thought perspective, we get it twisted up, good feelings, late night memories, good drinks, good vibes is the remedy in this energy that I’m feeling alive deep inside me.

we need and we must not lose grip or touch…this life is a rush, the world wants to hush us, and smother us like the illusion of a good life is far from us. Don’t let them in, are you crazy, you don’t deserve it, they’ll hurt you or you’ll just do it yourself cause your just messed up. Lies, these are lies…perfection is fantasy, imperfection is humanity. Don’t lock up, open up, release what’s inside, acknowledge the flaws you hide, no divide but love inside.

To feel something real, to let my scars heal, heart beating cause I found my remedy, I found my remedy singing, rhyming my melody cause your not far from me, Lord you’re right here with me living alive inside me, my remedy.

- ylimemariee

https://instagram.com/p/BZMXKQvBFTz/

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mx more :: my unbreakable life by Jennifer McGill

My Unbreakable Life

Can your life be blessed and broken at the same time? I am living proof that it can be, but also that a broken life is really no life at all. I am a church girl and former Mouseketeer (child performer on The Disney Channel’s hit TV show The New Mickey Mouse Club), known for singing big and landing on my feet. However, I turned out to be no match for the negativity I secretly battled for most of my life. People rarely caught me falling apart every time life hit me. I would scoop up the jigsaw pieces of my spirit and force them back into where I thought they should fit, only to fall apart over and over again. How does someone like me slip through the cracks of life’s advantages and choose a broken life?

Well here’s how I did it:

# 1: I worked alone.

Though my church training told me that prayer was the answer, I was afraid God would take too long to fix me. I thought the easier fix was to be my own fixer, which is as effective as deciding to be your own surgeon!

# 2: I used the wrong glue.

Anger motivated me to show the leavers, deceivers, and the succeeders that I was doing fine when I really wasn’t. I cut ties first before I could be rejected. I held people at arms’ length. It was never my fault when my accomplishments appeared “less than”. Anger is a messy, unreliable glue that dries far too slowly to get you back on your feet in time for the next round of life!

# 3: I focused outside-in. I tried to polish up the surface of my life, but my brokenness stemmed from deeper cracks within my heart, soul, and mind.

The quick fix wasn’t buying me much time, and I knew I couldn’t survive forever on mere make-up and Band-Aids. The day finally came when I realized that I was living more of a slow death than an actual life, and I didn’t want to exist that way for one more moment.

I got on my knees:

# 1: I fired myself as fixer

# 2: I made God my glue

# 3: I rededicated my inside-out back to Christ I surrendered to God my anger, bitterness, jealousy, and shame…every piece of my brokenness. I chose to never make choices without God again.

I now live an Unbreakable Life because I want God to be in the center of everything I think, feel, and do.

Though an Unbreakable Life is not exempt from imperfection and pain, I don’t fall apart like I used to when life hits me. God has put my pieces back together, from the inside-out, in the way that only He can.

I’m not ashamed of the cracks of my past because I can now be proud of the scars they have become, which are proof of healing and reminders of what God has brought me through. On my own, all I could muster was an occasional revamp, but God fully restores! Life comes with cracks, but we choose what to do with them. Do we force a broken life of falling apart or do we surrender to an Unbreakable Life of God’s healing?

“Therefore, since we have been made righteous through his faithfulness, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. We have access by faith into this grace in which we stand through him, and we boast in the hope of God’s glory. But not only that! We even take pride in our problems, because we know that trouble produces endurance, endurance produces character, and character produces hope. This hope doesn’t put us to shame, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.” (Romans 5:1-5 CEB

- Jennifer McGill

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mx moment :: fearless

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mx moment :: houston

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mx moment :: identity

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mx more :: release

http://bit.ly/2wGMcDx

“Cause sometimes you just feel tired,

Feel weak, and when you feel weak, you feel like you wanna just give up.

But you gotta search within you, you gotta find that inner strength

And just pull that crap out of you and get that motivation to not give up

And not be a quitter, no matter how bad you wanna just fall flat on your face and collapse.” - Eminem

People are condemning instead of forgiving. Selfish over selfless. Boastfulness over humbleness. Crying inside, covered up with a smile on the outside. No mercy or grace, caught up in their own chains. Society digs holes inside us, dragging us down to our own self poverty.

Tolerate it, no I get aggravated by it. Cause if it’s not your passion, then don’t waste your time watering a plant that’s not even growing. faith is not just a seed that you plant, can’t just stick it in some dirt and expect it to start growing. If faith is fake then it’ll leave you suffocating. Cause, if it’s not God it’s self absorbing.

Community is beautiful when it happens it gives us opportunities to show compassion.

If honesty is the best policy than why we don’t use it but instead we amuse it.

If love casts out fear then why do we all linger in it…like there’s nothing we can do about it. We let fear conquer us before love can free us.

If Jesus loves us then why doesn’t he hear us, prayers feeling answer less. Don’t give up, stay strong, keep holding on. He’s listening while we’re in the waiting, contemplating or questioning everything we’re doing. Is it right, is it wrong, should I keep singing even when I’m not feeling this song.

Struggling to feel connected when we were rejected. Numb, feeling robotic, tempted to become an alcoholic. Drunk off loneliness, consumed by emptiness.

Life is a rush, if you don’t keep up, you might get pushed. Love is the mystery we’re all trying to solve. When Jesus is the only One who can fill this hole.

Singing and rhyming saved me when the walls inside we’re surrounding me, If I didn’t do this, I’d still be stuttering and mumbling. Awkward human, fair warning.

Music is like drugs for my soul, came to save me when I was stuck in this hole…working long hours I was starting to feel old.

Numb from love, drunk off old memories, hung over from thriving, life feeling like I’m barely surviving…situational atheist. The word release came to me when I was dreaming, now written in ink on my left arm, as a reminder, to not linger in fear, but to let love come near.

The more you reveal, the more you heal.

Don’t be waiting but, start doing…story-telling, breathing, adventure seeking.

“I know what I’m doing. I have it all planned out, plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for. When you call on Me, when you come and pray to Me, I’ll listen. When you are looking for me, you’ll find me. Yes, when you get serious about finding Me and want it more than anything else, I’ll make sure you won’t be disappointed. - Jeremiah 29:11-13 (MSG)

-Emily Muse

ylimemariee

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mx moment :: courage

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mx moment :: anchor

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mx moment :: control

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mx more :: part two

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My voice is fading, my song has been far from me…distant like a cold symphony looking for my melody and then it hit me.

Listen I know I’m not good at feeling, emotions I hide like a great divide. Old habits are creeping, but it won’t get to me or tempt me, cause the new me that’s alive and rising like a spiritual revival my soul a chapel…I should be dead but I’m alive.

“God, my shepherd!

I don’t need a thing.

You have bedded me down in lush meadows,

you find me quiet pools to drink from.

True to your word,

you let me catch my breath

and send me in the right direction. -psalms 23 MSG

Listen I know I move too fast and forget to set back and release cause stress is a deadly disease… I know where I stand, I’m different, I get it, I know most don’t see it, don’t accept it cause they wanna change it like I’m made of this world, supposed to be like you, blend in and stay silent but you’re missing it cause I was a seed planted to break this silence, annoying isn’t she? Get use to it cause I won’t stop, atleast I own me cause all this negativity won’t kill me.

I know I’ve got blood on these claws called flaws cause I know I’m not perfect, grace and forgiveness is a beautiful thing thats freeing & not conflicting, keeps me breathing, no longer suffocating. Cause the more you admit that you’re wrong and at fault there’s a love that went out there that died to break you free.

Even though I walk
through the darkest valley,
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me. -psalms 23 NIV

Faith that grows that never goes, the image of You I don’t wanna lose even when I go home, and the music goes up, the lights go down I hope that I’m still that canvas reflecting You, my story inside not to hide and I know the walls inside want to eat me alive but, I gotta fight cause there’s more to life than losing sight of what’s right.

When I feel You this zombie in me comes alive it’s a fire I can’t hide. When I thought the music in me died.

“God gave you them shoes to fit you
So put ‘em on and wear ‘em
Be yourself, man, be proud of who you are
Even if it sounds corny
Never let no one tell you you ain’t beautiful.” -Eminem

-Emily muse

Twentysomethingstn.com

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mx moment :: battles

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mx moment :: capture

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mx moment :: prayer

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mx moment :: be somebody

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mx moment :: happiness

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mx moment :: possibilities

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mx more :: need to belong

Powerful Woman of God Blog

Encouraging, Empowering and Strengthening Women in Life, Love and Faith.

“I just want to belong.” That’s an age old phrase that has been stated all through the centuries. Everyone wants to be a part of something. They want to be loved, accepted and included. Fraternities, organizations, social clubs and school clubs, the list can go on and on. People want to belong.

The need to belong, though, has taken on a new face in the past couple of decades. It is in hyper-mode. Laser-focused and happening at the speed of the computer keys. We are connected by the aid of a digital world. We feel linked, even though we don’t know people personally. We join groups and forums, feeling that we are a vital part of a whole, all the while, many times, never even meeting with these individuals in a face-to-face, personal experience.

It makes me stop and wonder, are we becoming a surface society? Never truly reaching deep down into our own truths. Has this affected us in more ways than we can imagine? Does it directly or even indirectly make us even unaware of who we truly are?

When God spoke about knowing us in the womb, talking with us, having plans for us to prosper and giving us a future while knowing Him, did He know that we would become so dependent on the need to belong, that His words to us would become opaque? That the need for Him would be overshadowed by the need to belong here on earth.

It seems that we have become a world that is addicted to belonging. Addicted to having other’s view our daily activities, our wins, even our challenges. We are addicted to scrolling through other people’s lives and comparing our own against their 5-minutes of perfectness, caught on a camera or video screen for all the world to see.

What do we truly belong to? What is really true? What does that face look like behind the camera, behind the computer screen? Do we really belong or is it all just a huge facade? Have you checked your, “I need to belong” meter lately? Maybe it needs reset a bit. I, also, want to belong. But more than that, I ‘need’ to belong to the only One that truly matters.

~Sue

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mx moment :: most people exist

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mx moment :: closer

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mx more :: the bacon lover

I’m sorry.

“No, you’ve had enough bacon; you don’t need anymore,” I said to my then little man, who is now 26, as I reached for more. It felt as wrong to me in the moment as it does now.

We do a lot of things in the name of “we’re the adults here,” as if our status excuses our wrongdoing. It’s one thing to share with our kids the mistakes we’ve made and what we have learned, it’s another thing to tell them not to do something and then do that thing.

Teenagers are falling away from the church at an alarming rate – God’s not the issue; it’s His people. I want to disagree with them since our faith is based on the unconditional love of God who loves US ALL and wants us to love EACH OTHER, but I can’t disagree. I’ve seen Christians devour each other the same way that wild animals eat other wild animals. We are guilty as charged. We have not loved our neighbor as ourselves; our insecurities keep us from even liking ourselves. We have dined at the all-you-can-eat-buffet of gossip and told you to “never mind, just eat your veggies” and neglected our own sin while we savored the deliciousness of others.

It’s no wonder that it’s not working for the youth, it’s not working for the adults either. Pride keeps us so preoccupied with being right that we failed to notice that you moved on. We’re so consumed with the fear of YOU getting this wrong and unaware of the fear that’s ruling our own minds: fear that your bad behavior will make us look bad, while we behave badly. We control your outcomes when we’re afraid for ours and in this, we have neglected the most important part: your heart, the source of life and the place where Jesus entered upon your invitation.

On behalf of adults that have failed you, let me offer some of the most powerful words I know: I’m sorry. Forgive us. We have hurt you. We will hurt you. We don’t mean to. I’m sorry that we do what we tell you not to.

God’s people will get it wrong continually. We’re imperfect but God isn’t and He gets it right 1000% of the time. Blame us for our failings, not Him. Hold us accountable for our actions, not the Creator of your soul who just wants time with you. Forgive us. Forgive me. Listen, I love cool slang as much as the next person but “my bad” doesn’t carry the same weight as “I’m sorry.” “My bad” is void of responsibility. I’m sorry; I’m remorseful. I messed up. Forgive us all, if you don’t, you’ll grow bitter. And bitterness turns to resentment-resentment can turn that good heart of yours to stone.

We love you so much it hurts inside, we care so much about you that we could go crazy. We’re learning and so we take away your bacon, thinking we’re doing you a favor when actually, you’re teaching us. My 26-year-old son is the greatest example of God’s love and forgiveness in human form. He’s gold. I’m committed to saying “I’m sorry” as many times as it takes, even when I feel I’m right. I’m swallowing selfish pride to taste resolve. Hearts are more important. I want to love Him the way that God loves us: in ridiculous amounts. You are loved in ridiculous amounts, maybe even more than bacon.

JILL

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Armed and Still

“The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.” - Exodus 13:3

I’m not going to lie, it is really hard for me to be still. Having nothing on my “to-do” list, a blank calendar day, and no one to talk to is really hard for me. I feel purposeless, pointless, and a little bit depressed. What is the point of my existence if I’m not doing anything or helping anyone?

And that is where the lie comes in. In that moment the Enemy is telling me that my worth is based on the things I do and the relationships I have. The truth is that my worth is based on what Jesus did on the cross; my worth is in the fact that I’m a Daughter of the Living God.

Even if it appears that I’m doing “nothing” my life still has value and purpose. And at some moments, the best thing I can be doing with my time is love God and let Him love me in stillness and rest. On the outside it appears like I’m doing nothing of value, but on the inside God is doing something more valuable than all the treasures on this earth.

As a type-A “doer,” this can be really hard for me to accept at times. If I’m not doing anything for God, what am I doing? But even this mentality is one of works and putting my value in what I can do for God, not in what He has done for me.

“The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.” - Exodus 13:3

I came across this verse this morning while I was reading through the story of the Israelites leaving Egypt after being held in slavery for years. Before the Red Sea was even crossed, Moses said this to the people.

Interestingly enough, only a few verses earlier the writer of Exodus notes that “The Israelites went up out of Egypt ready for battle” (Exodus 13:18). I can picture the Israelites standing on the shore of the Red Sea dressed for battle, scared to death of the Egyptian army and then Moses standing up and telling them to be still. Armed for war, yet still.

This is how we are to live our lives. We are to be ready for battle, ready to speak out against the lies of the Enemy when they come, but still and trusting God to fight for us. Our value is not in what we do or how we fight, it is in what God has already done for us. Sometimes the biggest test of a warrior is not the fight itself, but holding still and trusting the commander to lead even when they do not understand what is going on.

God is working things out. He is fighting for me. He will show me when to stay and when to move. All I have to do is be still, listen, and trust in Him. The Lord will fight for me, all I have to do is be still.

Rock on guys.

Grace

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mx moment :: fear kills

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mx moment :: buried alive

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mx moment :: worth fighting

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mx moment :: what we don’t see

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mx moment :: art

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Thirteen Reasons Why Suicide is the Worst Option

Over three million copies of the novel Thirteen Reasons Why have been sold and the Netflix series is a runaway hit. It’s the story of a shy high school student named Clay Jensen, who comes home from school to find a package containing seven cassette tapes. On these tapes, another high schooler named Hannah Baker, details thirteen reasons why she chose to kill herself.

Each tape unpacks more and more dark secrets and horrific happenings that unfolded during Hannah’s short and painful life. The storyline is filled with hurt and abuse that range from cyber-bullying to rape.

Suicide prevention groups often loathe both the book and the series accusing them of glorifying suicide among teenagers.

But the purpose of this post is not to critique the book or the series but to give thirteen reasons why suicide is the worst option for teenagers (and adults for that matter.)

Over the last 25 years, I have spoken to, trained and mobilized over one million teenagers across the United States. As the Founder and CEO of Dare 2 Share, I am passionate about equipping Christian teenagers to reach their non-Christian friends with the hope of Jesus Christ.

I’m no stranger to teen pain. On April 20th, 1999 I was a pastor in the Denver area and leading Dare 2 Share parttime when the Columbine High School massacre unfolded just across town. My heart broke for the many hurting teenagers I knew in that school. What they endured was unthinkable.

God used this horrific tragedy to call me to spend the rest of my life rescuing teenagers from hopelessness.

Since then I have encountered countless suicidal teenagers who think they have lost their reason(s) to live. A small percentage of these teenagers have attempted suicide. A handful of them has succeeded.

Every time I hear about a teenager who has ended his or her life my heart breaks. That’s why I wanted to write this particular post. I want to give teenagers thirteen reasons why suicide is the worst option.

Here they are:

1. While you have life, there’s still the possibility of hope.

The wisest man ever to live, King Solomon, wrote these words in Ecclesiastes 9:4, “Anyone who is among the living has hope—even a live dog is better off than a dead lion!”

Right now, while you still have air in your lungs, you have the possibility of hope, forgiveness, and redemption…no matter what you’ve done or what has been done to you.

2. You only get one life on this earth.

“Just as people are destined to die once, and after that to face judgment…” Hebrews 9:27

Once you’re dead this life is gone. There are no do-overs. There are no second chances. There is no reincarnation. You live once. You die once. That is it.

You only get one shot at this thing called life. Please don’t cut it short.

3. There are other options.

Getting counseling, trying out a new group of friends, finding a church to plug into, diving into a hobby or sport…these are just a handful of the ideas that are way better options than killing yourself.

Make a list of ideas (outside of killing yourself), choose one and go for it.

4. There’s nothing romantic about a suicide.

From the time Romeo and Juliet (a story about star-crossed young lovers who both end up committing suicide) were penned many have thought of suicide as a romantic notion. But it is not.

As a former pastor I’ve had to do funerals of suicide victims and I want to tell you there’s nothing romantic about a suicide. I remember family members at one funeral who kept rushing the casket up front while I was preaching. They were weeping and mourning with indescribable pain. Suicide is a brutally selfish act that leaves maximum pain and grief in the hearts of the surviving family and friends. It traumatizes children, teenagers, and entire communities.

If you’re a suicidal teenager reading these words right now I beg you to get some help. Suicide may seem like you’re only way out but it is not. It’s the most brutal choice you can make so don’t make it.

5. It’s not your life to take.

“Know that the LORD is God. It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.” Psalm 100:3

You were made by God. You are not your own. It is not your life to take.

And God, your Maker, made you for a purpose. It may not feel like it right now, but you are his and he has given you the gift of life for a divine purpose. Don’t reject the gift he has graciously given you. Instead, try to find out the reason he has given it to you.

6. Even if nobody else loves you, God does.

I have met very few teenagers who are truly unloved. Usually, there is somebody somewhere who cares about them. But even in the very worst case scenario, there is at least one being who loves you…God.

In John 3:16 Jesus himself said, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

Focus on those first six words, “For God so loved the world….” Now, put your name in place of the “the world.” Read it out loud…

“For God so loved _______________ (your name)”

Your Creator, the one who formed you in your mother’s womb (Psalm 139:13), loves you…even if nobody else does. That, in and of itself, should be reason enough to keep on living.

7. God sent his only Son to die for you so that you could truly live.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

God loved you so much that he willingly sacrificed his beloved Son, Jesus so that you could have life, hope, forgiveness, and purpose.

Jesus is not only dying to meet you, he died to meet you! He rose again and is extending his hand in the offer of eternal life if you simply put your faith in Him. This hope is not accessed through religion but through a relationship with God! This brand of life is not achieved by trying harder but received by trusting in Jesus and his death in your place for your sin on the cross. He died to give you life. He rose from the dead to prove that true life is only found in him!

8. Jesus empathizes with your pain in ways nobody else can.

“For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin. Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” Hebrews 4:16,17

Jesus understands your pain. He suffered more than anyone else ever to live and he wants to help you through your pain. Come boldly to his throne through prayer and he will give you the strength to help you through your trials, troubles and suicidal thoughts.

9. God can redeem your pain and use you to help others going through the same kind of pain.

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.” 2 Corinthians 1:3-5

I never knew my biological father. I was the result of a short-term sexual relationship. My father abandoned me and my mom before I was ever born.

I was also raised in an inner-city, violent and relatively poor family by a single mom. As a child, I witnessed things that no child should ever have to see. I experienced things that no child should ever have to experience.

But God has redeemed all of that. He’s redeemed my pain of being fatherless by being the Father who I never had. He redeemed my pain of being raised in a broken family be giving me a spiritual family. And now I get to comfort countless teenagers in their pain with the comfort that God has given me.

In the same way, God can, not only comfort you in your pain but use your story to comfort other teenagers and point them to Jesus Christ.

10. Inward pain can make you strong.

“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” James 1:2-4

Whatever pain you are going through can either crush you or strengthen you depending on your response to it. Let this inward pain make you spiritually, emotionally and mentally strong by keeping your eyes riveted to Jesus.

11. There are ministries, churches and/or organizations that can walk you through it.

There are many, many groups that can help you walk through this “valley of the shadow of death” to find true and lasting hope. Life is a team sport. Don’t try to fight suicidal thoughts on your own. There are people out there who are waiting to help you. But you have to let them know.

12. Satan wants you to kill yourself. Jesus wants you to really live.

Jesus said, “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” John 10:10

This singular verse of Scripture lays out two clear options: listen to Satan and be destroyed or listen to Jesus and find true life!

Choose Jesus! Choose life!

13. There is a way out.

The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, he will show you a way out so that you can endure.” 1 Corinthians 10:13

You are NOT the only person who is going through trials, troubles, trauma and temptation. And God promises to provide a way out.

Look to him! He will help you through it!

These are my thirteen reasons why suicide is the worst option. What are some others?

Greg Stier
Dare to Share

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FBN Launches in the USA

FAITH BROADCASTING NETWORK is excited to announce the expansion of its viewership reach. FaithUSA launches 6 July 2017 on the Dish Network (Channel 269) to reach an additional ±14 million homes! This is the first satellite expansion into North America, and there are exciting terrestrial additions to be announced in the near future! The time is now for the Gospel to be spread globally from East to West, and we are excited to be a part of the expansion of God’s kingdom.

In addition, FBN has concluded negotiations in some other states and cities throughout the USA, which will bring the potential reach close to 20 million homes. Some of these cities include Philadelphia (700,000 homes), Tampa (2,945,000 homes), Jacksonville (120,956 homes), and Orlando (1,750,000 homes) to name a few. FaithUSA will focus on the power of the Holy Spirit, broadcasting live programs showing revival in action, the supernatural, and miracles; as such, this will set Channel 269 apart from most other religious offerings on television.

MXTV will be aired at both 4:00 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. EASTERN time (3:00 / 3:30 p.m. CENTRAL - 2:00 / 2:30 p.m. MOUNTAIN - 1:00 / 1:30 p.m. PACIFIC) Tune in to CHANNEL 269 on DISH NETWORK to catch upcoming episodes of MXTV! and pass it on!

We are so excited to partner with FBN to reach this generation through Satellite TV. God is providing continuous NEW AVENUES for us to rePresent God’s word through music, message and media to this generation! Thanks for watching, TIM info@mxtv.org

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mx more :: judged

An escape I need, cause your expectations are filling up my lungs and I can’t breathe. Holding on by a thread ‘cause the stress is all up in my head…and I can’t get out of my bed, your words and your judgments are the chains that keep me suffocating. Pulling me up and down, I can’t move. Violating the freedom I’m supposed to be living.

Be the voice, stand up strong when the world is pulling you down. Don’t let them look down on you cause you young.

Mean words are the bruises on my neck, insecurities hitting me like an earthquake. Your looks don’t welcome me but, shut me out, I may need you but you’re not listening, you’re not hearing but you seeing my covers.

Be Jesus your supposed to be but, if He’s anything like the person that I’m seeing then He won’t accept me. kinda sad, isn’t it? when this isn’t how it was supposed to be. Live freely, be who you’re made to be, love unconditionally,

Be the voice, stand up strong when the worlds got you feeling down. Don’t let them tell you what you’re supposed to be when being different is the point that He’s making.

Em

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mx moment :: beautiful

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mx moment :: be alert

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Does God REALLY have a Plan for Each of Us?

Does God Have a Plan for Each of Us? (Jeremiah 29:1–32)

In the story above, Jeremiah was speaking God’s words to the Jewish people who were in exile in Babylon. The letter that he wrote offered the promise that God would restore his people after 70 years. God assured them in Jeremiah’s letter that he would carry out his plan for them and would bless them.

The fact that God took care of his people and loved them even when they

turned away from him

and were being punished is encouraging. This is just one of the many places in the Bible where God revealed that he has plans for his people, and he will bring them about. Another example of this is the story of Joseph, who was sold into slavery but eventually saved the people of Egypt from famine. Throughout the Bible, God had plans for his people even when they were in difficult situations.

We know that God loves his people and will care for us today as he has cared for his people in the past. We can try to discover God’s plan for our lives by reading the Bible, praying, and seeking advice from parents, pastors and mentors.

Don’t be discouraged if you aren’t hearing Him right now. He isn’t always vocal and doesn’t watch a clock. He is waiting for the exact, perfect right time to bless you! Keep your eyes and ears on Him…It will happen!

*excerpt from Bible Gateway

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Closed Doors

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What is Alone?

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mx more :: love conquers all

Love Conquers All

At 8-years-old, I sat on the edge of my father’s hospital bed, doing my best to wrap my mind around the finality of death, as it brutally introduced itself to me. My dad was dying, after spending the past 5 years of his life struggling against the dark specter many of us know as cancer. He was my hero—my safe place. I thought he was invincible; but there he was, severely emaciated and gasping for his final breaths—a shell of the man he once was. My best friend was dying, and he was leaving behind a fragile wife, a 2-year-old daughter, and me; a confused, heartbroken little boy. That night, January 2nd, 1996, started me down a path of brokenness and pain that would last for the next ten years.

For years after my father died, my pain worked itself out in anger and rage. I was quick to violence—both physical and emotional—if things didn’t work out the way I hoped, and I hurt many people around me—classmates, friends, or family members. I remember one night in particular, something set me off and I took it out on my mom. I screamed at the top of my lungs, and threw or hit anything I could get my hands on. My mother, in what I think was mostly desperation, grabbed on to me and wrapped me up in her arms. She didn’t know it at the time, but she tapped into the heart of God that night. I was furious. I screamed at her to let me go—cursing and threatening her at the top of my lungs. She refused. She held me even tighter; eventually sitting down into a chair in our living room, pulling me close, and holding me tightly on her lap.

I did everything I could think of to make her let go—I tried to bite or kick her, I screamed profanities at her, telling that I hated her, and even threatening to take her life. She never wavered. She hugged me even tighter, whispering, “Son, I love you,” over and over again. She never argued or bargained with me. She simply held me in her arms, refusing to let me go, and showing me that, no matter what I did, I was loved, whether I liked it or not. Eventually I fell asleep in her arms, and she carried me to my bedroom and tucked me in to bed for the night.

I don’t know that my mom even really remembers this night, and I certainly couldn’t have said this to her at the time, but that was the first time in my life I ever really felt loved. My mother was willing to endure my violence and bear my scorn just to make sure I KNEW that she loved me. She showed me that, no matter how badly I messed up, she wasn’t going to go anywhere. I’ve found that, this is what God’s love is like. He is not intimidated by our rage or our insecurity. He will not be scared off by any of our feeble tactics. His love is fierce and forceful; relentless and patient—it is willing to endure the fire of our fallenness just to show us the glory of His goodness. His love conquers all.

How strange that we Christians treat God’s love like it’s very fragile. Have you forgotten just how big our God really is? Maybe you never had the same violence or anger that I did, but I’ll bet that if you’re honest, you can remember having a rebellious heart just like mine—with your little fists balled as you cursed God with your lifestyle, demanding in all your feeble fury that He leave you alone. If you’re anything like me, it must have been so irritating to see that none of your protests ever worked. Nothing you ever did ever discouraged His pursuit of your heart. With each great rebellion you mounted against Him, He simply drew you nearer and loved you deeper, in spite of your self.

God is a lot like my mom, I think. He is not intimidated by your sin or your selfishness. Your rebellion was no surprise to Him, and your weakness doesn’t discourage Him. He knows the depth of your depravity and He loves you wildly anyway, and there’s nothing you can do to stop Him! So today, why don’t you take a page out of my book, and just give up. Let the Father wrap His arms around you and pull you down into His lap. Allow the bitterness of your past without Him to fade away and make room for the sweetness of your future with Him. Close your eyes, open your hands, and see if your heart can maybe hear him whispering to you with strength and sweetness, the words that will set you free if you can learn to believe them: “Son, I love you.” Mattie Montgomery

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mx moment :: faithful love

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mx moment :: plans

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mx moment :: walk humbly

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mx moment :: mistakes

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mx moment :: on your knees

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mx moment :: the eye

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mx moment :: refuse

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mx moment :: warrior

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mx moment :: whisper hope

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mx moment :: hand it over

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mx more :: battling on alone

When life is overwhelming, instead of running to Jesus, I sometimes battle on, alone. I know what the Bible says…but what I need is busyness. I’m building a wall against chaos, and every task is another brick.

What are you facing at the moment? What is it that feels “too much?” A stressful job – or no job. Screaming children – or no children. Your health. Your bank balance. YOU. Too tired to keep going; too weak to stop.

As Christians, if we feel overwhelmed, we’re in good company. In the bible, God’s people are constantly being pressed down and poured out. The apostle John writes about such struggles in Revelation 1:9. However, it’s not his suffering that floors him. It’s Jesus who knocks him off his feet.

Here’s how John describes this Jesus:

He was wearing a long robe with a gold sash across his chest. His head and his hair were white like wool, as white as snow. And his eyes were like flames of fire. His feet were like polished bronze refined in a furnace, and his voice thundered like mighty ocean waves. He held seven stars in his right hand, and a sharp two-edged sword came from his mouth. And his face was like the sun in all its brilliance.

This God has eyes like flames. Are you hurting, alone or overwhelmed? He sees.

This God has feet like bronze in a fire. Are you in the furnace of sorrow and pain? He is with you.

Are you overwhelmed by criticisms, complaints and demands? This God has a voice that drowns out all others.

Do you feel surrounded by darkness? This God is like the sun in all its brilliance. He brings His light.

This God isn’t a set of January resolutions. He is Lord. Lord of our depression, Lord of our finances, Lord of our relationships. Lord of our bones and Lord of our tears.

Whatever we’re facing, this God is greater still.

Emma

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Faith Broadcasting Network in South Africa adds MXTV to their Roster

press release :: faith broadcasting network
press release :: faith broadcasting network

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mx moment :: day of trouble

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mx moment :: be watchful

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news from the field :: mxtvUK

MXTV

I don’t know who am going to be,

As I have this mixed message that MTV is sending me,

And the negative lyrics are starting to effect.

So it’s a struggle to keep my faith in check,

Because you ain’t all that if you’re not out getting wasted.

Plastic surgery for famous faces & using women as sex objects, and if I ain’t perfect, I am not accepted

They have packaged up a lie so good, am impulse buying it.

The currency is my soul and I ain’t even denying it.

But hey, a least they can relate to me, because it’s relevant to me.

They are meeting my generation where they are at you see.

I am sorry but lectures, begging for money & old school gospel track will not cut it.

Then I came across MXTV.

My generation is hard to reach but they are reaching me, changing me & impacting me.

From 1997 they have been inviting the world to heaven.

Speaking my language, broadcasting over 200 countries and reaching 3.4 billion people.

Because they made church more than pews, stained glass, windows and a steeple.

People say plant some seed, when really it’s Jesus they need.

I remember Tim spoke on Love what you do.

When I was thinking, man, I really don’t love what I do.

But now I love what I do.

Bringing my generation to salvation.

Thank you, MXTV

Steven McLeish - Pastor/Spoken Word Artist

Glasgow, Scotland

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mx moment :: turn my eyes

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mx moment :: strong God

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mx moment :: it’s a promise

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mx moment: in times of good, bad and ugly, try this

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mxtvUK Promo 2016

We are so excited about our new venture, mxtvUK! This is a new division of MXTV, featuring hosts and co-hosts that reside in the United Kingdom. Episodes will be shot both on location in the UK and in the United States.

Episodes will be shot MXTV style with lots of Music, Message and Media!

Check out our new PROMO here!

Keep an eye on mxtvUK!

Facebook: mxtvUK
Twitter: mxtvUK
Instagram: mxtvUK

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Setting Your Sights

I was thinking the other day as I was tweaking the sight on my bow, how many of us will be focusing on sights now and in the coming months. Whether it’s bow sights, a shotgun bead, or crosshairs most of the men in this country will be lining their sights up on something.

All my life I have been a very driven person. I’ve always had laser-like focus on whatever goal I was trying to achieve. I always thought this was actually a “good” area of my personality. What I mean is I always hit my mark. I thought my sights were zeroed in on the target, whatever it was. It could have been school, sports, hunting, work, finances, girls, relationships, the list just keeps going. I didn’t just think I could hit my mark, I KNEW I could. And what’s apparent to me now, I hit exactly where my sights were pointing…I was just pointing at the wrong target.

Have you ever tried to teach someone how to shoot a gun? They miss, you ask if they were aiming at the target, but you don’t really know if the sights are off or they just can’t shoot. Sometimes we’re aiming correctly, but our sights are just not set right. Other times our lack of focus causes a miss when everything else is set just right.

What I have learned in the last two years is that all the things in this world I worked so hard to achieve were not the True targets. A nice house, money, the farm, my kids, even my wife are not where the laser of my focus should have been. None of which are bad in and of themselves, but the True target I’m talking about is Christ. When I decided to set my sights on Him and on things, not of this world, it completely changed my perspective on all the other things I’d been aiming for.

It is so easy to get caught up in the daily chase of this world. Multiple times a day we’re faced with choices, but we have to figure out what it is we are chasing. It’s easy for me to write about this, but much harder to put it into practice. What we are chasing, our prize, is the HOPE that we find in a Spirit-led life. Hope is what gets us through the rough times when we miss, and what makes the hits that much better! All the other things we chase in this world have hope, but it’s a short-lived hope. There is only one hope that lasts forever, and that’s the hope we find in Jesus Christ. When our hope is found in Christ and only in Christ, all the other things just fall into place…

Where are your sights pointing? Do they need a little tweak? Are you really focusing on the True target?

Since you have been raised to new life with Christ, set your sights on the realities of heaven, where Christ sits in the place of honor at God’s right hand. Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth. For you died to this life, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God. And when Christ, who is your life, is revealed to the whole world, you will share in all His glory.

Colossians 3:1-4 (NLT)

Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep His promise. Let us think of ways to motivate one another to acts of love and good works. And let us not neglect our meeting together, as some people do, but encourage one another, especially now that the day of His return is drawing near.

Hebrews 10:23-25 (NLT)

STAND FIRM,

Heath

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Remain in Me

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Right Right Now

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Delight

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Understanding trust.

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Dear Girls

Dear Girls

Dear Girls, I have something to say to you,

the stuff your listening to just isn’t true

and I hope this poem gets through to you.

You are not ugly, dumb or unattractive,

you need to take every thought captive because you captivate.

You are not just another stereotype and as you type your status know that you are more than your status and likes.

You say your fat and ugly but that is not what you post to be.

A princess and a daughter of the king is what you’re supposed to be.

You are beautiful, unique, one in a billion, one of a kind, awesome, brilliant, creative, powerful, stunning and sm awoman after God’s own heart,

and whether you think your fat or thin just be comfortable in your own skin.

And next time you think of the word beautiful don’t forget to count yourself in.

You are precious, a trusted diamond and boys who don’t wait for you are not wise men

because you are one of the most valued commodities there is and know this you will never look like the girl in the magazine, even the girl in the magazine doesn’t look like the girl in the magazine.

but you are queen, no low self-esteem because the Creator of the Universe esteems you highly. You are loved by God so don’t live your life photoshopped and take the filter off.

The Bible says that you are fearfully and wonderfully made and when God made you he did not make a mistake. He can’t stand when you compare yourself to others because you are beautiful just the way you are.

So don’t let this world’s expected images to conceal you be the real you,

and don’t cut the skin there is too much beauty within,

and don’t let the words from peoples’ lips stick but pick God’s foundation. I see in you, you can change a nation, but I see you live under the shadow of extensions of lies but come out from under there with a fire and a hunger in your eyes.

You are more than beauty products and you are not a sex object,

and by all means wear makeup, but not to make up someone that’s made up.

Don’t believe the nasty things people said or the lies in your head because they all come from the father of all lies Satan and when he’s making you cry inside just know that one day you will be a beautiful bride,

and that groom will love you for who you are,

and think you are the most gorgeous by far.

I know for some of you, your heart breaks but you are strong and have what it takes,

and it takes not giving the devil a chance to let any man hold your hand for a one night stand but take a stand.

The timing may or may not be right for you,

but Mr. Right is out there for you,

waiting for you with a ring that says I promise,

promise to be all you hoped he be,

promise to cherish and hold you forever,

and he will say with everything I give her,

all my heart.

He will die for you,

nothing will separate you apart.

But as you wait for Mr. Right,

and when nothing feels right,

know that there is always one Mr. Right…

Jesus Christ,

who has already died for you.

And as He gets off the cross,

he will bend down on one knee and say,

will you…Live for me?

© all rights are owned by Steven McLeish. Scripts may be performed in a live performance if the event is ‘free’. The artist, “Steven McLeish’’ must be credited if you would like to perform at paid event or with video/audio. Contact us on our website stevenmcleish.com for more information.

Steven McLeish

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Believe.

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Be Still

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Fear vs Faith

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Name Calling

Follow Me - News

New Promo 2016

mxtv promot 2016

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mx moment :: God showed off

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mx moment :: full of themselves

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Risk

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Confusion

Today, it seems that confusion follows us everywhere. Social media reports on it. Our government feeds on it. Families are living in it. The media expands on it. It is a disease that is spreading fast and sure.

I started thinking about the very word confusion and pulled up the dictionary to help me define it. Confusion: lack of understanding; uncertainty. The state of being bewildered or unclear in one’s mind about something. The synonyms took it to an even deeper place; unsureness, doubt, ignorance, bewilderment, puzzlement, befuddlement, shock, daze, wonder and discombobulation. Woah! Place just one of these words next to what is happening in the news today and it, unfortunately, fits.

God must have known this would happen to us as humans. Confusion messes with our brain. It causes us to do things that we would not have done if we had a calm and sure mind. Confusion to God is like oil and water. It just doesn’t mix. It sits on the top and doesn’t let anything through. It’s a barrier. A tall, high fence that won’t let us enter that awesome place of calm.

Picture a scene in which a crowd of people witness a bomb explode. They begin running, screaming, crying, not knowing where to go, or what to do and complete chaos ensues. Confusion leads to chaos, chaos leads to fear and that all adds up to lack of power and a life filled with shock and doubt! Now picture a scene on a beach, where everyone is relaxed and enjoying the surf, soaking in the sun and not having a worry in the world. That’s the visual difference between confusion and a sound mind.

Paul, a leader in the bible, talked to a young teen, Timothy, about confusion. He told him, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” 2 Tim.1:7. A sound mind. Having that in our life gives us power. Time to think, to consider every scenario. Every outcome. God’s desire is for his children to not live in a life filled with confusion. Proverbs 14:30 even talks about how it ‘corrodes the bones’. In essence, confusion destroys.

Take a moment today and see how confusion is messing things up in your life. Then turn things around. Don’t give into confusion. Replace it. I went back to that same dictionary and looked for antonyms. I found calm, happiness, clarity, peace, order and sense. When confusion rears its ugly head, stop for a minute. You don’t need to fall prey to its destructive methods. Grab someone to help you look at your life and see what things need to change to take confusion out and bring some peace in. Lay it all out and cut what needs to be cut. Living in a world filled with anxiety and discourse is hard, but you don’t have to allow it to cover you and destroy you. You have a choice.

Creatively His, Sue:)