Wednesday, October 31, 2018
Tuesday, October 30, 2018
It's that one night each year that we get all dressed up and we can't recognize each other!
Join us for our Annual Banquet as GTD celebrates 22 years of ministry and prepares to go into our 23rd year!! (WOW! Praise God!)
DATE: Nov 13, 2018
DAY: Tues Night
TIME: 6:30pm - 9:00pm
FUNDRAISING GOAL: 100K
ATTENDANCE GOAL: 250
CATERED BY: Carrabba's!!!!!!!!
VENUE: 105 Central Park Drive, Largo, FL 33771
Banquet to be held in The Parkview Room of the
Central Park Performing Arts Center (formerly known as Largo Cultural Center)
DETAILS, REGISTRATION, & TABLE SPONSORSHIPS
We can't wait to see you!!!!!!!
Friday, October 26, 2018
We are hosting Thrive Student Ministry of Skycrest Community Church for our last camping retreat of 2018. We almost made it the entire year without a flat tire... but our streak continues haha! Let the adventures begin!
Overcome the obstacles and go the distance =)
It's only flat on the bottom. Blow out on Veterans Expressway!
Wednesday, October 24, 2018
Mission Trips, Adventure Trips, Retreats, DestiNATION Trips, Local Day Trips... GTD does it all!!
Family friendly... Christ-centered... Life changing!
Learn more & custom build your group event here.
STRiVE to THRiVE!
(PS: 48 and feeling GREAT! Thank You Jesus!!)
Tuesday, October 16, 2018
Saturday, October 13, 2018
Special thanks to my Dad & People Helping People of Pinellas Park for donating shelving (that they were retiring) to me & GTD.
Carson & my Dad disassembled the shelves a few months ago. Laurie & I have been reassembling them little by little over the past 2 months. And Traci & Carson helped create the overhead storage.
Today I finished stocking the shelves and decluttering the garage. This now gives us the workspace we need to move forward with the home improvements projects.
One of our goals is to reduce our storage / possessions by at least 50% over the next 6 months.
I can't express how much simple joy I now get from clutter-free open space. That's coming from a guy that has historically held onto way too much stuff "just in case". But that ship has sailed... there's a new paradigm taking hold in my life that revels in clutter-free open space. I've got a long road of decluttering ahead of me, but I can't wait to travel this route.
Thanks again to People Helping People of Pinellas Park for their generous donation of shelving, as well as my family & friends for their hard work in this project!!
Final costs: Main shelving = FREE. Overhead shelving was built 3 years ago. Additional shelving supplies to add more shelves = $100. Total current shelving cost = $100.
Tuesday, October 9, 2018
One of the most challenging aspects of running camps with a very small staff and being on the road for up to 5 months each year is all the administrative work that piles up while away. September through December is my annual time to catch-up on all the office work. This year was complicated by the fact that we had to relocate the home office. Finding & buying a house and then moving was an amazing experience, but it was extremely time consuming. It was my 2nd full-time job this year that took 6 months to execute all while running our camps. The great news is that all of the discipline applied to sticking to a wise daily routine kept me anchored in my daily devotions, consistent in my workouts, and healthy in my nutrition. The results are that I FEEL GREAT as I tackle a huge amount of admin work, prepare for our Annual Banquet, and get ready for our 23rd year of ministry! Currently I'm tackling our remaining financial entries so that our AMAZING ACCOUNTANTS - Fredrick James Accounting (who volunteer their services to GTD each year!!!) can submit our corporate taxes to the IRS by Nov 15th. I'm almost halfway through the projected 210 hours of data entries that piled up this year while moving and away at camps. 210 hours is the equivalent of a little more than five 40-hour work weeks that I'm working like a mad-man to do in under 3 weeks while tending to my other responsibilities. It's tedious, monotonous, and wrought with redundancy, but this nerd actually enjoys it. But I do look forward to completing it, being caught up, and getting to spend some quality time with our phenomenal faithful supporters who God uses to make this ministry possible. I can't wait for that!! We have so many people to thank, and hug, and rejoice with! But for the next week I'm playing catch-up in front of a computer screen entering receipts, expenses, and statements. A couple times each day I come up for air... then it's back to work =). Thank you supporters and friends of GTD for your prayers, love, and encouragement as we plod through another great year of ministry!
Thursday, October 4, 2018
Everyday for the past 5 months I've been reading and focusing on one of my favorite short stories in the Bible often referred to as, "The story of Martha and Mary" in Luke 10:38-42. At only 5 verses it may be pound for pound the most richly concentrated small passage in the Bible that accurately describes the meaning of life, mankind's premier priority, humanities' simplified purpose, and our tendency to chase after inferior counterfeits.
Its simplicity leads to a bewildering liberation. How can it be that simple?!?! Can the essence of life really be comprised into one simple thing?!?! Is sitting at the feet of Jesus listening to His words really all that is necessary?!?! Certainly serving Him and serving the needs of others is my chief calling, right?!?! In this one short passage Jesus declares that doing things for Him isn't as important as spending time with Him. Not even close! Not even comparable. Martha, in all her well intended toil to serve Jesus, was so DISTANT from Him that she became distracted, anxious, troubled, accusatory, blameful, controlling, and overwhelmed with too much and too many things on her "service plate". Her service for Jesus actually pulled her away from Jesus. And the results were that she was miserable. And for too many people, especially Christians, we have over-valued service for Jesus to the point that we have under-valued spending time with Jesus. We have not accurately assessed the value of a relationship with our Creator. We have put the call above The Caller... the gift above The Giver... the service above The Guest of Honor. When we do this, the symptoms are easy to recognize. Like Martha, we become distracted, anxious, troubled, accusatory, blameful, controlling, and overwhelmed. But Mary didn't experience that. She set the example that we should all strive after. She left the kitchen to spend time with her guest. Bravely, courageously she put a target on her back to be perceived as someone being irresponsible, neglectful of others, and possibly even lazy. But she was right. She was enjoying the presence of God. And that's the point. We were created to enjoy God's presence above everything else. To find our greatest joy simply hanging out with Jesus. Martha was trying to do good things, but anything that takes the place of spending quality time with Jesus is, by definition, a distraction from Jesus. Don't be mistaken, service is very important and it has its place. But too often, for too many people, it has wrongly taken the place of our one necessity in life - being with Jesus. Service should be an overflow of our time spent with Jesus, not a substitute.
The great thing is that spending time with God is both simple and easy just like spending time with a best friend. Taking 10, 20, or 30 minutes a day to just hang of with God will lead to a fulfillment & contentment that is incomparable to anything else life has to offer. It's like winning the World Series everyday! Oh, it will take a little discipline, wisdom, and fight to get out of the kitchen, or turn the TV off, or put your phone down, or get up 15 minutes earlier. But all those things are a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Jesus.
As one of my favorite former pastors used to say, "The main thing is to keep The Main Thing the main thing." =)
STRiVE to THRiVE!
Wednesday, October 3, 2018
One of my life mantras is, "Anything But Boring!". When life & relationships become predictable then they become boring. Shake up your life with variety, adventure, and healthy risks... and you'll never grow old & wrinkled; only seasoned with smile lines!
"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
That's why I follow Jesus! He is anything but boring!
Tuesday, October 2, 2018
Join us for another festive banquet on Nov 13th (Tues night) at The Parkview Room of the Central Park Performing Arts Center from 6:30pm - 9pm. And don't forget, this event will be catered by CARRABBA'S!!!
Come enjoy a special night as we celebrate 22 YEARS OF MINISTRY!!!
CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS
CLICK HERE TO RSVP
CLICK HERE TO SPONSOR A TABLE