GOD has a PLAN; YOU have a PART

As Discovery Family Ministries approaches it’s 25th Year Anniversary in October, we look with deep gratitude at the lives God has privileged us to connect with. Some have been passing acquaintances for short periods of time. Others have walked with us for longer periods because of mutual burdens and activities. These eventually drifted away to other areas of focus. Then there those who remain close friends. It is the way life works. 

Earl Nightingale of yester-year helped me understand these three categories of relationships. It was a “good word.” My propensity is to expect every passing acquaintance to become a life-long friend. It simply does not work that way.

When we fail to appreciate the distinctions, it can cause anxiety and anxiety leads to depression. Anxiety in the heart of man causes depression, but a good word (encouragement) makes it glad. Proverbs 12:25

We have told our story of restoration from alcoholism and moral failure to literally thousands of people. During these almost 25 years, we have attempted to teach the principles that worked for us. We celebrate those who succeed and grieve at the loss of those who do not!

It is painful to admit, but there remains widespread relapse and the return to old lifestyle patterns. This is unacceptable. Lives are being lost. We urgently need to provide permanent answers before it is too late.

In our Discovery Groups three wonderful mothers have sat with broken hearts after losing sons at a very young age, all because of drug-related deaths.

Last week a young woman, 33 years of age, the mother of two beautiful daughters died from drugs here in Mobile. She was not a nameless, faceless statistic; she sat in our classes and heard the Word! Linda and I knew her! The young man with her died also. He also sat in our teaching sessions at one of our venues of ministry.

Our hearts are broken for these and we are trying our best to carry the message. It is not enough to coldly say, “We all have choices.” I am begging God to give us the right input to touch the reasons for the bad choices!

I am coming to understand that while many experience a genuine, even emotional, conversion, their internal default system is damaged. This may be derived from environmental or genetic backgrounds, but people can change!

Going underneath the surface and applying the Word of God to faulty belief systems gives our population the best hope. What does this include?

1. A brand new revelation of God’s destiny and design for one’s personal life

2. A clearly defined, intentional and determined strategy going forward

3. The development of personal motivation built upon envisioning healthy rewards and delayed gratification even through hard times

4. The embracing of sacrificial service as an end in itself

If these elements are imparted among the people to whom God sends us, we will see abiding fruitfulness and productivity. If not, we will continue to see “hit or miss” results. 

I know the Biblical principle of broadcasting the seed at random, some grow and some do not. I know we cannot control what bears fruit, but pardon me while I cry out to God for better results. 

So while we rejoice in the quick responses, we are not deceived. DFM aims at longer-term results. To that end, we view 2016 as a year:

To help recovering people define the matter of God’s personal destiny

To offer strategies for maximizing our full potential and productivity

To encourage God-given personal motivation rather than unhealthy dependency

To explore and promote the value of servant ministry

Spiritual leaders who communicate these matters guarantee better “prevention rates” among their youth. We pray you will be part of our thrust in this New Year. 

While walking through our family room, I heard a young fiery TV preacher say, “God has a plan; you have a part.” I thought, “That is succinct!” It verbalizes the philosophy and theology of DFM.

I also thought of you our friends who have a significant part in sending us into the harvest fields. We thank you for responding to the Holy Spirit!