Monday, January 25, 2016

Standing on the edge of history


               The Church is standing on the edge of history; we are watching Biblical truths begin to unfold before our eyes.  As I reflect on the comments of individuals both in public life, and those that I come in contact with daily, my heart is sadden by the thinking and actions of so many people.  People that are so educated and have everything to live for, rejecting the truth of scripture for their own personal reason.

               We have an opportunity to change course and correct the future, and make our children’s history better than ours.  However, for that to happen we need to STAND ON OLD FASHION PRINCIPLES that not only made the church great in the past, but have made us who we are.  It is time for the church to seek a revival (what I find interesting is we talk of Revival as something America or the world needs to do, which is totally false) … REVIVAL IS SOMETHING THE CHURCH MUST DO! Better yet it is something we personally must do!

               The concept of Revival is to REVIVE bring back to life, bring back to prominence, bring it to a position of influence.  I remember as a kid, knowing that you didn’t plan anything on Sunday because that was the day people went to church.  I can remember praying in elementary school, and having a teacher not scared to lose their job because they said Jesus.  It is time for the church to return to a time that the message is clear, and yes I will say it out loud it is time for all these false teaching, feel good, comprising preachers to get off television and out of the pulpits across America and the world. It is time preach that Jesus Died for our Sin’s, He is Alive, He is the ONE and ONLY WAY to HEAVEN, and HELL’s Hot and you reject Christ that is your destination. Preachers that haven’t spoken a message of the Cross in decades couldn’t or wouldn’t preach a sermon on Hell (despite the fact that Jesus spoke of it 10 times for every time he spoke of Heaven.

               We have denominations and churches that have bought into the lies of the devil, hook line and sinker. They have turned from God’s truths, and have taken the church on a collision course with the destructive destination of HELL; we need to return to God’s plan for the church and for you as an individual.  It is time for all churches and denomination that proclaim to be Christian to stand up, speak up, and say without reservation that Christ is King of Kings and Lord of Lords.  He is the only son of the Living God, and is the only method for getting to heaven with no other way but HIM, becuasue of what HE did at the cross and resurrection.      
 
As I see it, scripture Revival requires three simple things’…
  1. God’s men and women to stand up in their pulpit and preach the Book, Blood, Crucifixion, Resurrection, and 2nd Coming of Christ.   Making it clear as the writters of scriputure does  it is time to REPENT and turn from your SIN.
  2. God’s people to pray for forgiveness for their individual sins. Yes I agree we need to pray for America sins. However, until we have our own heart clean before Christ the prayers for America don’t mean much.
  3. God’s church needs to unite for the purpose of sharing the gospel, what is the gospel is the Good News of Christ death, burial, resurrection, and second coming.  It is time to break down denominational lines, cultural lines, economical lines, and yes even time to lose the attitude that the person doesn’t use the same translation that I do.

When you read scripture it is clear, it is God’s people getting right with HIM (Christ) first, then God moves the church, nations, and world to revival.  However, It first starts in me and you.  I read sermon once that “In the 1800s Gypsy Smith, a great revivalist was asked how to have revival. He said, “Go home, lock yourself in your room, draw a circle around yourself with chalk, and ask God to start a great revival within that circle!”

My prayer is as I stand here on the Edge of History is God will you start the Revival in ME, Please!!!!!!!


Thursday, January 21, 2016

Through HIM Ministries Report

Through HIM Ministries Report

From Rev. Don Allen, Jr PhD, LICDC-CS, Founder/President

As Through Him Ministries enters its 13th (2003 – 2016) year we have seen God bless beyond anything we could have hoped for, with the writing ministry being one of the key places God has allowed us to make an impact.  We can easily say that a conservative number of download/views of our workbooks/study-guides is in excess of 50,000 with the data we have from over the years. I heard from a pastor in Africa that he has downloaded our material on Grief and shared with his congregation (when asked how many copies he reported 700), and we have heard similar reports from other parts of Africa, India, Pakistani, Philippines, and other countries.  
  
The following list are places that Through HIM Ministries have published Workbooks/study-guides over the past 13 years, and it all started with “Christian Coping with Grief,” which ironically is the number one workbook we hear about from people around the world. Second is our workbook “Mighty Men of Valor”.

1)     LULU.com is currently our main bookstore:  www.lulu.com/donallenjr   … (67 books on this site)
2)     Internet Achieves: www.archive.org  (19 books on this site).
3)     Scribd: www.Scribd.com  (29 books on this site)
4)     Smashword: www.SmashWord.com  (56 books on this site)
5)     Nook/Barnes & Noble bookstore: We found at least six of our workbooks on Nook Download (Someone else placed them on the site)
6)     Youpublish (No longer active as of March 2013 or before, at the time of closing we had 10 books online)
7)     Peneuma Foundation (www.pneumafoundation.org)  … We have 4 workbooks published
8)     Life Church West Chester (www.lcwestchester.com)  … We have 8 workbooks published here
9)     Flower (A/G Pentecostal Achieves) … One book published (Dissertation)

Note: We also found 32 sites on the web that our workbooks are either published at or providing links to our books on our accounts at; lulu.com, smashword.com, archive.org, or scribd.com material.

We also have provided, as a part of Through HIM School of Ministry, some study-guides on the Life of Christ, Genesis, Bible in Recovery, and created the E. M. Bounds School of Prayer. However, this is one of those situations where you live and learn. We were unable to generate the interest in a certificate program. Although we have heard several pastors in Africa and India are using the material with their churches. We have since moved these into our regular sites for distribution.

Blogs:
Through HIM Ministries has maintained two blogs; one is a blog of mine and our friends articles and thoughts. The second is a preaching/teaching outline resource for individuals to find help with sermon outlines.  Between the blogs, we have had nearly 12, 000 views.

Articles and Publication’s
            In addition to writing the workbooks and blog post, I have also written a number of articles that have been published in magazines, newspapers, and online.

Preaching/Teaching …
The irony is that this is what I went to school for and the only thing I have ever really wanted to do. However, it seems to be the thing I do the least. We have had over the past 13 years some wonderful opportunities to preach at some awesome churches around Mid-west, and even a trip to Germany to preach a revival. We have been blessed to walk across denominational and cultural lines to preach and teach. We have taught workshops/seminars on grief, addictions, leadership, pastoral theology, and other topics as people request. I was asked if I miss being in the pulpit every Sunday, and ironically the answer is yes and no. I miss preaching/teaching on a regular bases, but I can say without reservation that the opportunity to preach, teach, write, and minister to individuals around the Greater Cincinnati area, America, and the World has had its rewards.

Board of Directors …
            I would like to thank our Board of Directors (Rev. Robert Harper, Gary Stanforth, Jacob Gideon, and former board member Chuck Clevenger) that have been such a blessing over the past 13 years. These are men of God that have shared their wisdom, and direction throughout the good and the rough times. I would like to especially acknowledge our board member and Assistant Director of THM, my son Ethan, who has been such a blessing in helping carry the vision forward over the past few years. The greatest dream of a father is when a son shares his passion and vision.

Vision for the next 5 years ….
THE VISION IS TO SIMPLY KEEP DOING WHAT WE ARE DOING; the goal is to write 100 workbooks/study-guides in my life time, and we are well on our way with 67 completed. We will also continue to pray and seek opportunities to preach in pulpits around the Mid-west, America, and the World as God gives us the opportunity.  I would also like the opportunity to present professional workshops/seminars that encourage and challenge men and women to be successful in their ministry and professional career.

The newest vision of the THM is to expand our outreach by developing and presenting online video teachings that our friends around the world can easily access. Our hope is to provide teachings on topics such as: church leadership, helping friends cope with grief, helping friends overcome addiction, understanding the Life of Christ, and others. Please pray that God will provide the resources to see HIS vision for Through HIM Ministries come true.

There is always that vision of every ministry leader that he prays they can minister full-time, and I won’t lie to anyone, I have that vision. The ministry team and I would love for you to check out our website at www.throughhimministries.org and see how we could be a blessing, and please pray about how you could help us accomplish our goal of ministering around the world.


If we can be a blessing to you or your ministry please e-mail me at Throughhimministries@gmail.com


Saturday, August 29, 2015

Tribute to a friend gone to soon:

Tribute to a friend gone to soon: On Thursday August 27, 2015 a Friend, Mentor, and Editor of mine passed away. JOHN (OR AS I KNEW HIM CHARLEY) SROUFE, he was a friend from the day I first met him at Summit Behavioral Healthcare, in November 2004 and that friendship continued from that day until a phone call just days before his passing.  He was that great friend that you would love to run out for lunch and sit at a local park in the old Bronco or truck, and eat, plus my wife was even given the privilege of joining his family for his retirement party from SBH. As a mentor he was there to help with questions about being a substance abuse counselor, or challenge you for that next big project. However, most would not think of his greatest impact was as an awesome editor, of the current 67 workbooks published by Through HIM Ministries Charley edited over 35 of them, this is not including dozens of blogpost, articles, and other projects that came to my mind.


Charley my friend, mentor and editor although we didn’t see eye to eye on politics and religion, but we did agree on encouraging each other to be a great father, an awesome counselor, and challenges each to accomplish the goals that we set. Thank you my friend for the awesome friendship! 

Monday, August 17, 2015

Is it breakfast time?


For those that have been around me for more than a couple of days, and especially if you have gone to a restaurant to eat with me, you know I LOVE Breakfast.  There is just something about ordering two eggs over medium, biscuits and gravy, hotcakes, or French toast. Then of course you add the bacon, sausage, I know some even like steak or chicken with their breakfast, and of course don’t forget the hash browns.

To me, breakfast is the food that can be consumed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and never gets old.  As I sit here today I was thinking about my life, and what else have I enjoyed every day as much as Breakfast and honestly I can think of only three things.

  1.  First is the relationship I have with my family. The time we spend sitting talking, reflecting on the past, and looking forward to the future. The time we share dreams and even heartache. Family is like the comfort food of breakfast; you just know that it going to be alright. 
  2. The second being the place I choose to worship HIM. For me a lot of the joy of breakfast is preparing the plate so that I can enjoy it.  Getting those eggs just right on top of the French toast, with just the right amount of butter and syrup.   Praise and worship is the same way, it is getting everything ready, getting my heart, my mind, and attitude ready to enjoy the celebration that is about to take place as I enjoy his presence. 
  3. The last is my own personal relationship with Jesus Christ; it can’t be like the leftovers in the refrigerator or fast-food sausage biscuit driving 60 miles an hour down the road.  It has to be personal quality time sitting and enjoying my time reading HIS word, meditating on HIS thoughts, reflecting on HIS love, and knowing that this is the next best thing to being in Heaven with HIM.


I realize that I have to be selective if I want breakfast all day, every day, not every restaurant serves breakfast 24 hours a day (Although in my mind they should), and even worse some don’t serve it at all.  However, the reality of my life with Christ is the same, not everyone in my family enjoys breakfast just like I do, and not everyone enjoys talking about my friend and savior Jesus Christ. Not every church is interested in serving up a daily dose of Jesus; they are more interested in serving what is popular this week that the world wants to digest, and they miss so much from that daily celebration.   Of course none of this is possible if I don’t really enjoy sitting down and patiently waiting for it all to come together.  When I go to the restaurant I have to be willing to read the menu, place my order, wait for it to come, fellowship with those around me, and pray for God’s blessing.  However, when all that is done it is time to eat.  As Christians we need to focus not on the earthly breakfast, but on the heavenly supper of the Lamb which is coming soon. Have you accepted the invitation to dinner  (or in my mind  breakfast … I bet God makes some awesome Biscuit and Gravy)


Friends, enjoy your breakfast. However, more importantly enjoy your relationship with Christ and your family daily.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

What have you been displaying lately?


I recently pulled out an old box in the garage that has been in storage way too long. It is a chess set and board that my parents made me over 25 years ago. Mom hand painted the ceramic pieces and Dad made the chess board.  It seemed like every time we moved I had good intentions to pull it out and display it. However, there always seem to be things standing in the way, either there was no room in the apartment, too many kids running around, or just didn’t fit with the d├ęcor of the house at the time.

Last night my wife and I found a place for it in the living room, where everybody that comes in the house can see it. I’m so excited for the opportunity to talk about it, and share the story. However, as I looked around I saw my Bible sitting on the kitchen table under by datebook, phone, and keys. I realized that I was more excited about telling people about my Chess board and pieces than I was about sharing the awesome message contained within the Word of God.


I guess the question today for me and everybody else is simple, what is it that you are excited to talk about.  Is it the chess board on the bookshelves, the picture on the wall, the new phone you just got, or maybe the new app you bought.  I wonder what God would think is the most important thing for us to talk about.  I would guess (or really I know) it is simple … HE WANTS US TO SHARE ABOUT HIM, SO THAT OUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY CAN SPEND ETERNITY IN HEAVEN WITH HIM AND US. 

Here is my thought on the Gay Marriage issue!


               It is time that the church gets out of the business of being a puppet of the state. As a minister I believe that if the state wants to issue marriage license for the purpose of tax status, social security, benefits, and etc., then they should be the ones’ held accountable before God.

My proposal is simple …. When a couple goes to the Court House to get their marriage license and signs all the documentation in front of the person behind the counter and swears it all to be true, they are legally married in the states eyes.  Then if the individual wants religious ceremonies they should come to the church or other religious institution for the Blessing of Marriage.  


I compare this to my responsibility as minister of doing funerals of church member. I do not represent the state in saying that the person is dead. My challenge is to support and encourage the family through their time of grief. The Blessing of Marriage ceremony would be the same thing. I am encouraging the family and couple in their time of celebration, with the couple being legally married by the government. However, the church is Blessing the Marriages they approve. If ministers want to bless same-sex marriages, then they like the government, will be held accountable. 

Thursday, June 18, 2015

There are Prejudice people that are alive and well in the world today!

           
I started this blog post about three weeks ago, prior to the events that recently occurred in Charleston, South Carolina where a lone white male attends a church prayer meeting of a Black congregation, kills nine.  I will wait patiently for the investigation to hear what was said as he stood to his feet and with Prejudice, Malice, and Hatred began to shoot. There is no doubt this is the worst kind of Prejudice and the worst crime when one kills out of hat for the one’s skin color, religion, or even sexual orientation, which shows that we really haven’t moved beyond the story of Cain and Able over the past 6,000 years.

Ironically, we these events and we scream, cry, and demand justice. However, prejudice behavior is going on around us every day.

Before we begin let’s define the word Prejudice from the dictionary …

” 1) An unfavorable opinion or feeling formed beforehand or without knowledge, thought, or reason.  2) Any preconceived opinion or feeling, either favorable or unfavorable.  3) an unreasonable feelings, opinions, or attitudes, especially of a hostile nature, regarding an ethnic, racial, social, or religious group.”

I’m amazed today how that we throw this word “Prejudice” around, and accuse others of being prejudice.  The conservatives accuse the liberals and vice versa, whites of blacks, rich of the poor, and the list will be a mile long if we continue.   We allow experience, perception, and fear to dictate how we respond to individuals that look different, have a different belief system, different religion, or simply a different skin color. 

We allow the events of our personal history or an attack or even a perceived attack by a group of individuals of a different ethnic group years ago, either to us personally or someone we know sets the stage for us to be prejudice against an individual or the group throughout our lives.  We can be prejudiced of an individual due to their faith, because not of something the individual has done to us but because of something some else of the same faith or religious group has done.  I have even begun to notice prejudice response within our own community. I recently spoke with an individual that stated conservative black Politian’s where not worthy of respect because they don’t really support the cause of Black America.  An individual was recently accused of having homophobia, because she didn’t support gay marriage.

I personally grew up with prejudice tenses; I think we all have some.  Throughout my teens my dad was a retired Air Force Sergeant, and had gone to work for General Motor.  It was often hard to watch things happen like individuals with fewer skills are get promoted over this man that had so many skills. It was hard to accept the two list system of the 70’s where two minorities where promoted within the local police and fire department, over others that had scored much higher on the test.  Or as a student watching others getting accepted to college with the same grade point average as mine, and other things in the name of Affirmative Action.  Now some would immediately say he isn’t prejudice, he is a racist.  However, the reality is very far from the truth, I accept and love that scripture verse found in the Holman Christian Standard Bible version that reads: There is no Jew or Greek, slave or free, male or female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 

How do we take America and the world back to being able to accept the writing of the Apostle Paul and make prejudice or racism a distant cry in America?  I think that there are four major, however, simple steps to accomplish this goal.

1)     We need to quite attempting to rewrite history:  Sadly, in my family legacy there are things I’m not proud of some of it so ancient that I’m not sure I know the whole story, and some more recent.  Whatever the event or legacy that dosen’t define me.  We talk about accountability. I’m only accountable for my words, actions, and opinions not what my grandfather said 50 years ago.

2)     We tell the radical on all side TO SIT DOWN AND SHUT UP, this goes for the media, to actors/actress, religious extremist on all sides to. We learn to speak for ourselves, or feeling, beliefs, and desires. We don’t allow organization to define us; we share our heart, emotions, and feelings. We don’t allow extremist and activists to tell who to like or not like.

3)     We quit demanding everybody believe what we believe.  This includes allowing individuals to have their personal religious beliefs. Just because I don’t agree in your life style choices such as, gay marriage, and marijuana should be legal, polemic, or many other beliefs that individuals have. These don’t make me prejudice, my beliefs are based on a well thought beliefs based on my understanding of my Christian beliefs.

4)     Time to sit down and have Breakfast, my best friend is Robert.  Now let me explain Robert is an African American pastor here in Cincinnati that I have known for over 24 years.  And it all started with having breakfast at a Perkins Restaurant all those years ago.  Do we always agree? NO,  do we always see things the same no. However, one thing is for certain we always talk about it.

When is prejudice going to be eradicated in America, to me it is very simple … When America is willing to sit down at the Breakfast table and talk about feeling, beliefs, and acceptance of others. 
Or better yet, when we are ready to sit down at the Lord’s Table and pray, and have communion together. I learned a long time ago, I can’t be prejudice, angry or talking about someone if I’m praying for them and with them.

            My heart breaks over the events in Charleston, S.C. I don’t attempt to understand the mind of the attacker, and I believe justice needs to be done. I believe the conversation has to begin, not with the extremist on both side, but at the breakfast table learning to know, love, and compare with each other.