Wednesday, April 2, 2014

FREE Movie Preview–“Irreplaceable”

“I’m looking forward to the release of Focus on the Family’s new documentary film, Irreplaceable, and the companion small group experience, The Family Project. clip_image002These important resources explain why the institution of the family is a signpost pointing us directly to God Himself, and why this truth has profound implications for both the Church and society.”

Dr. Russell D. Moore
President, Southern Baptist Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission


Dear friends of Dr. Moore and Focus on the Family, On May 6th, Focus On The Family is presenting the new documentary “Irreplaceable” in 700+ theaters across the US for a one night event!  “Irreplaceable” follows Tim Sisarich, former executive director of Focus on the Family New Zealand, as he explores the answers to two critical questions: “What is family?” and “Does family still matter in today’s society?” We believe “family” is in crisis.
  • In America, there is one divorce every 13 seconds
  • Half of all American children will witness the breakup of a parent's marriage
  • Approximately one third of US children live without their fathers
  • 85% of all youths in prison come from fatherless homes
  • 80% of youth gang members come out of fatherless homes
As our culture's views on family are changing, is there still hope that our country can find its way back to God's design for the family? Focus on the Family believes there is hope for families and has never undertaken a project of such size and scope—one with the potential to transform not only individual hearts, but society as a whole. And we want you to be a part of it!  This special one-night event also includes a panel discussion moderated by Jim Daly, President, Focus on the Family; featuring Carey Casey, CEO, National Center for Fathering; Rebekah Lyons, Author; Rev. Sam Rodriguez, President, National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference; Tim Sisarich, Host of Irreplaceable, former Executive Director, Focus on the Family, New Zealand.


PASTORS ONLY: We are also offering advance access to screen the film online for yourself and any other pastors you may know of for the purposes of empowering leaders to endorse the content of the film. Pastors may request access by emailing Bob Guillemette at bob@differentdrummer.com.

Tickets are available at participating theater box offices and online at www.FathomEvents.com. For a complete list of theater locations and prices, visit the Fathom Events website (theaters and participants are subject to change).







Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Reaching More Youth

Any church that is going to make a significant impact in their community needs to find ways to effectively reach youth. As new churches start, they are often frustrated to not have the ability to have children and youth programs for new families.

Here are two ideas I picked up from Phil Spry that can help a new church (or an existing church) connect with youth and their families in their communities.

1. Campus Life Clubs
A church can establish an affiliate relationship with Youth for Christ. YFC has a ministry called “Campus Life Clubs.” A church can affiliate with YFC as a partner and have their own “Campus Life Clubs” hosted by their church at their church location. The clubs are open to the community churches, which provide your new youth group with a larger crowd for social interaction and Bible Study. It solves the problem of critical mass for the kids and insures the parents that there will be a program for their middle and high school age children at the host church. Even a small church can host this kind of a group. If there is no chapter already established in your area, your church can start one. For more information, contact YFC directly about their “Campus Life Clubs.”

2. Home School Chapel
A second idea that can have high impact in a community is to start and host a Home School Chapel. This invites local home school children to your facility one morning a week for a chapel service that can focus on high energy, youth-oriented worship, followed by an appropriate message. If you are a portable church, secure a neutral location to conduct the service. If interested in pursuing this idea, I would recommend that you contact Church Planter/Pastor Phil Spry. He has had successful experience starting and conducting Home School Chapels. To set up a phone conversation with Phil, e-mail him at phil@tellstart.com.

The Most Important Thing
I have ever done! Read my story HERE

Thursday, March 6, 2014

1,000’s View Training Workshops

In the past 7 days, more than 3,000 individuals have viewed training workshops on our web training website. Since the launch E-Quip Screenshot 12 06 22of our new Evangelism website (GPS.bscm.org) on March 1, 2014, hundreds have watched the training videos and linked to hundreds of other resources. Our web training portal is a great resource for developing leaders in our churches. It is a blessing  to have this great tool available 24/7 for equipping the church.

The top viewed workshops in the past week were:

  1. Church Planning & Implementation (GPS) (evangelism & evangelistic strategy)
  2. Simplified Search Team Training (for pastor and staff search committees/teams)
  3. Developing Your Evangelistic Strategy (7 steps to planning a successful evangelism plan)
  4. Treasurers: Financial Checks and Balances (for all church leaders that deal with financial systems and processes in the local church)
  5. Evangelism Resources (GPS) (a quick overview of available resources that can be used in a church’s evangelistic strategy)
  6. Baptist Faith and Message Session 1 (the first of a six session course on Biblical doctrines held by Baptist)
  7. Evangelism Strategy (Basic Training Journey: Unit 5) (training session for church starters on the essentials of evangelism in a new church)
  8. Home Alone: When Your Spouse Is Out of the Country (ideas to support a spouse when gone on an international mission trip)
  9. Discipleship/Leadership Strategy (Basic Training Journey: Unit 6)  (training session for church starters on the essentials of developing leaders  and a disciple-making process in a new church)

Friday, January 3, 2014

Football, Feelings and Faith

Football PlayersIt was a sultry 95 degrees outside as I stood in the locker room suiting up for another afternoon of football practice. As I tried to prepare myself for the next four hours of strenuous drills and scrimmage I thought: "Man, I sure don't feel like going out there today!"

This wasn't the first time that I had felt like this. There were many days that I just didn't feel like going out onto that hot practice field to beat my head up against some stuffed football dummy hour after hour. Even worse, I usually had to knock heads with my teammates who were for the most part, bigger, quicker, and meaner than I ever dreamed of being. Each day though, I forced myself to go ahead and suit up for practice regardless of my feelings.

Why was I willing to continue to submit myself to such unwanted punishment even when I didn't feel like it? Commitment! I had made three basic promises that motivated me to go to practice every day in spite of my personal desires or feelings. First, I vowed to myself that I was going to stick it out...no matter how difficult it got during the season. Secondly, my teammates were counting on me to be there and to give it my best. We were a team, so I had to bear my part of the load. Finally, I had pledged to my coach to be faithful to practice and to preform to the best of my abilities.

In reality, my feelings played a very small role in my participation as a member of my football team. On many occasions I didn't want to practice, but I had committed to myself, my teammates, and to my coach to put forth my best effort and play with all my energy.

One morning a few years later, I rolled over in my bed and decided that it was really going to be "one of those days". I was no longer playing football, but I was struggling on the scrimmage line of the Christian Life. I felt terrible! Murmuring to myself I said, "Man, I don't feel like being a Christian today!" "I don't want to read my Bible...who would know? Why should I go to Bible Study tonight...no one really notices. All that "Christianity stuff" is just a show anyway...isn't it? Think about it, when I do 'Christ-like' things at work I get taken advantage of almost every time, and at school I get smirked at and rewarded with laughter. Being a Christian in today's world is just not worth it...so why try? If I wait until I feel like being 'Christ-like' it will be of more benefit to God's kingdom - won't it?"

Of course not! The fact of the matter is, today I must be more willing to endure the spiritual pressure from the world because of my faith than the physical punishment of playing football as a teenager. WHY? Because feelings have virtually no role in why I am a Christian. Just as I made three commitments to continue to play football regardless of my feelings, three commitments were made when I accepted Jesus Christ as my personal Lord and Savior.

First, I vowed to myself to be faithful to my daily relationship with Christ. Each day I decided to read my Bible, pray, and spend time with my Christian friends at church, work, and school. Some days I knew that I wouldn't feel like doing these things, but I would have to do them because of my personal oath to be faithful to Christ.

Secondly, I committed myself to my teammates of the faith, my fellow Christians. Each of them are depending on me to be a strong functioning part of the body of Christ and His church. I may appear to be a small or insignificant part of the total body, but I must carry my part of the burden. My brothers and sisters in Christ are counting on my support through prayer and deed during my every waking hour.

My final commitment was to be faithful to my coach, Jesus Christ, in my walk with Him through the daily trials and tribulations of life. I made Him the Lord and Savior of my life, meaning that I surrendered control of everything that I have to Him.

Living the Christian life is not a roller coaster ride of "up again" "down again" experiences due to our feelings. True Christian living strives daily to be consistent in spite of the feelings that may abound from outside sources. Feelings cannot control our actions of faith. Our commitment to ourselves, our fellow Christians, and to Jesus Christ our Savior, must be the source and reason for action in our daily lives. It really doesn't matter how you feel! Remain faithful to the one who has given you eternal salvation; for He has always been faithful to you...regardless of His feelings!

NOTE: I have used this illustration hundred’s of times for follow up after a person has made a decision to follow Christ. Since the same ideas can be applied to most sports (or other team activities), I frequently ask a person if they played any sports, or played in the band, or some other group/team activity. Once I know of an activity they committed themselves too, I can adapt the illustration to their personal history.

The Most Important Thing
I have ever done! Read my story HERE

Monday, December 30, 2013

Top 7 Blog Posts

7 imagesHere are the Top 7 most visited posts on my resourcing blog, www.BobbyGilstrap.com. Feel free to revisit each of these post and pass on the links to others that may find them helpful.

Thank you for following my blog. I look forward to continuing to post helpful resources for church starting, developing leaders, evangelism, church growth and much more.

The Most Important Thing
I have ever done! Read my story HERE

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Top 10 Twitter Posts of 2013

twitter-4bHere are my Top 10 most popular Twitter posts for 2013 based on my followers “mentions” and “re-tweets.” Feel free to repost these again if you feel they will be encouraging to your followers.

  1. "Nothing is politically correct if it is biblically wrong...no matter who says it." Fred Luter #SBC13
  2. Don't ask God to guide your footsteps if you're not willing to move your feet.
  3. Don't ask God to guide your footsteps if you're not willing to move your feet.
  4. “When it comes to sin, don’t keep brushing away the cobwebs … squash the spider.”
  5. "Never let the sense of past failure defeat your next step." ~Oswald Chambers
  6. "Stop catering to found people, and start finding lost people." @StuHodges #Send2013
  7. God will always use your journey, regardless of the wrong turns you have made...if you'll let Him! (#Romans 8:28)
  8. Worry is not absence of concern. Worry is concern that ignores promises of God. Worry is functional atheism. | via @rbj_ii
  9. The intentional dumbing down of church 4 sake of filling more pews will ultimately lead 2 defection from Christ.-D.Wallace
  10. "I forgave the interrogator who beat me" -Iranian pastor, writing from prison http://ow.ly/jkZ5C | via @baptistpress

The Most Important Thing
I have ever done! Read my story HERE