This past weekend, we took about a dozen men from our church to attend the annual Promise Keeper’s men’s conference at Church on the Rock in Winnipeg. (If you’ve never heard of the PK men’s movement, check out the Seven Promises of a Promise Keeper HERE).
The weekend started on Friday night with a time of praise and worship. Seeing and hearing just under 2,000 men worshipping the Lord in song was awesome! One of the worship leaders for the event was Robin Mark, a fabulous song writer and leader. He introduced a few new songs from his new album FLY. (Click HERE to check out one of his songs from Youtube).
There were two different speakers on Friday night. The first one was Ted Yuke, a retired pastor from Nova Scotia who brought a message entitled “Whose Battle is it?” He talked about how if we want freedom to reign in our lives, we need to defeat the giants in our lives, but we can’t do it on our own. As Second Chronicles 20 teaches us, “The battle is the Lord’s!”
The second speaker, Ted Dibiase, was a real treat. Many of you may know him as the Million Dollar Man from his WWF wrestling days. In addition to sharing his personal testimony of how he found faith in Christ, he talked about how the real measure of a man is the strength of his character and integrity. He challenged the men to give God your first and your best, not your left-overs. The basic theme of his message was a call to live a life of surrender that says to the Lord, “Not my will but yours be done!”
There’s something awesome that happens when you saturate yourself in God’s presence in praise and worship and sit under the teaching of the Word for hours – you are refreshed! It was such a wonderful time. On Saturday morning, the first speaker was Steve Farrar, an author whose books on men’s ministry topics have inspired me. He talked about “Preparing for Battle” – and talked about how we get endurance for the battle: We do it by ‘counting it all joy’ when we find ourselves in different trials or troubles (James 1:2). Bad stuff happens, but God is in control. The second Saturday speaker, Dwayne Cline, was another Canadian pastor from Hamilton, Ontario. He talked about how the church has become the audience of Christ instead of the body of Christ, and how God wants us to be a “Mighty Army.” He talked about how genuine community is critical for healthy Christian living, and challenged us to go deeper in fellowship in the church.
Our next speaker was Stephen Arterburn, the author of the best selling men’s ministry book “Every Man’s Battle.” He talked about a “Fight to the Finish” and discussed the importance of facing life’s trials to build up our endurance muscle. He said we can’t give Satan a stronghold, but we must be willing to surrender to the Lord in every area of our lives. It was a great ending to an awesome weekend with other mighty men of God!
To those of you reading this, I want to challenge you: We are all in a spiritual battle – men, women and children. If we want to be strong in the Lord, we need to stay close to Jesus in prayer, in God’s Word, and in fellowship in a local church. Let’s be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might, and impact our world with the love of Jesus, amen?
Pastor Chris Jordan