Today’s a new day! The new book is out. Thanks for all the love and support. This book is 20 years in the making. The majority of the book was written from my hospital room on 4South at Good Samaritan Medical Center. A fun fact. I have written both of my books on my Apple iPhone. I continue to live a blessed life. ~OC
God and Justice
Today’s a new day! As I study scripture, I have come to the conclusion that faith in God and a desire to do His will goes hand-in-hand with standing for social justice. Honestly, I do not believe you can have one without the other. You cannot fully walk with Christ without serving the the least of these and you cannot fully serve the least of these without an understanding and faith in Christ. Without Christ, you will never fulfill more than the surface-level needs of those you are trying to serve.
This is where Christians needs to take a stand. We should be a fortress for social justice. If we were truly following the scriptures, Christianity would be synonymous with social justice. I think our faith and social justice should be so intertwined they cannot be separated from each other. As Christians, we truly need to be the hands and feet of Jesus. We cannot just talk about the different issues that plague our country and world. We cannot continue to deal with every tragedy by just expressing our thoughts and prayers. No, as Christians we need to stand up for what’s right. Even if that means being challenged by society or other Christians for our beliefs. I believe social justice is close to the heart of God. ~OC
Dear Christian Community
As I scroll through social media, I shake my head at some of the things I read from the Christian community. A community I am part of, but often cringe at the post and comments of so many Christians.
As Christians we talk about the love, grace and forgiveness of God. We love to talk about redemption. We share stories from the Bible about amazing life changing experiences involving King David, the women at the well and Saul becoming Paul. The stories bring us hope. Unfortunately, I do not always see that lived out in the Christian community. Let me explain.
Recently Carl Lentz a former pastor at Hillsong NYC was hired by another church. I will not bore you with Pastor Lentz past troubles. There are plenty articles online. Based on some poor choices, Pastor Lentz has been out of the spotlight for the past few years. But as I mentioned above, he was recently hired by a church. According to some articles concerning this hire, Pastor Lentz has been working on rebuilding his family and himself. To me this is something to celebrate. There should have been articles encouraging Pastor Lentz in his new position. Instead, I saw post, articles and videos attacking Pastor Lentz and the church that decided to give him a second chance. A second chance. I thought we were supposed to celebrate second chances. God loves second chances.
I do not personally know Pastor Lentz. Have never met him, but I am praying God uses him and his family in a mighty way. Praying Pastor Lentz uses his life experiences to encourage and support others walking through their own storms. Praying he embraces the second chances in every area of his life. I for one will be rooting for him. I think God will to. ~OC
Today’s a new day! As we walk through the storms of life, hope is something we must continue to hold onto. Hope is not based on our circumstances. It is a firm conviction, a way of living out this journey called life. Hope sustains us through difficult times. We know God is always walking beside us, regardless of what our current circumstances might lead us to believe. We trust suffering is temporary and that God will use our storms for good. Even during our biggest storms in life, we boldly proclaim that God is in control. He never leaves the boat.
Many times in the last 21 years, I’ve found encouragement in reading in 2 Corinthians 12:8-9, where Paul talks about the thorn in his side. God responded by saying these powerful words, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” Those words give me hope. Those words give me strength. Those words guide me to encourage others as they walk through their own crazy beautiful journey.
I do not know what my future holds health wise, but I do know who holds my future in His strong nail scarred hands. I will continue to believe God’s love and grace is sufficient. It’s enough for me. I pray it’s enough for you. ~OC
Are You Ready For Revival?
As I continue to reflect on my time at the Asbury Revival, the fire for revival in my community as grown stronger. But what does that look like? As I have been praying, here are some things God has placed on my heart.
*Before revival can come to any community, there must be an increase in prayer. You might say a Revival of Prayer. We must make prayer a priority. Stay in prayer.
*We must sacrifice some things in our life. Instead of binge watching a tv series, take that time to pray. Sacrifice some worldly pursuits to truly hear from God. Stay in prayer.
*Make a new commitment to reaching a lost and hurting world. We must be willing to step out of our comfort zone. Lean into Jesus. Stay in prayer
*Ask God to reveal the sin in your life and then truly repent. Stop carrying your sin around like a backpack. Leave your sin at the Cross. Stay in prayer.
*Ask God to transform your life. Seek His purpose for your life. Walk it out. Stay in prayer.
*Stop being so busy with the things of this world. We are easily distracted from praying. Now is the time to pray and hunger after the things of God. Stay in prayer.
*Believe in the power of God. Expect Him to answer your prayers. Believe that God wants to bring revival to your community. Stay in prayer.
*Revival starts with us. It starts in our hearts. Be serious about praying and seeking God’s guidance. God wants to move in his churches and communities. Stay in prayer.
Are You Ready For Revival? ~OC
My Asbury Revival 2023 Experience
When revival broke out at Asbury University, I watched with excitement from my home in South Florida. The more I watched, the more I felt the Holy Spirit telling me to attend. So I texted several people and asked who was up for a road-trip. Thankfully one friend responded and we quickly planned our trip. My friend and his youngest son jumped in a SUV on Sunday morning February 19th and made the 14 hour drive to Asbury. My friends wife joined us later that evening. We were excited to see how God was moving in Wilmore, Kentucky. We wanted to experience what God was doing at Asbury. I am grateful we did.
On Monday February 20th, we drove over to Asbury University. Once we entered the campus, you could feel the power of the Holy Spirit. So many people from around the world had already come to experience the revival and Monday was no different. The lines to enter Hughes Chapel went on for miles. As the four of us got in line, the power of God’s presence was overwhelming. We all started sharing what brought each of us to this quaint little town in Kentucky. Like me, most people felt called by God to make the trip. We each wanted to experience the power and love of God. One key theme I kept hearing was Unity. Those I met in the line and those I met as I walked around the grounds talked about the importance of unity. No one cared about your denominations or political beliefs. Everyone wanted to hear why you attended the revival and how God was working in your life. As much as I enjoyed praising God inside Hughes Chapel, the stories in the line touched me in a powerful way.
As I reflect on my experience at the Asbury Revival, God put a few things on my heart. I believe over time, God will reveal more from this amazing experience.
- Revival truly did break out at Asbury. God was very present.
- Those of us who attended the Asbury Revival have a responsibility to share our experience and pray for revival in our own communities.
- This was not just another religious event. God was moving in a powerful way at Asbury. This was a life changing experience for all who attended.
- We must continue to pray that revival spreads across America and the world. We cannot let this moment slip away. We must lean into God and see how He wants to use each of us in the coming days, weeks, months and years.
- As Christians, we have to stop using excuses. God wants each of us plugged into our local churches, ministries and communities.
- Our worship should never be a performance. Worship should be glorious and simple.
- As Christians, we cannot be confined to the four walls of the church. We must be the hands and feet of Jesus outside those four walls.
- Every Christian has a role in God’s Kingdom. He blessed each of us with different talents.
- We must step out of our comfort zones. I am sure a lot of people stepped out of their comfort zones to attend this revival.
- Never be afraid to tell your story. Hearing the people in line was the highlight of the experience for me. It encouraged and strengthened my faith.
- The only way Christians can reach people with the Gospel, is to be truly unified. We must be One Church Family.
We must continue to pray for our churches and the and people in our city. Cry out for the Holy Spirit to move as never before. Seek revival personally and fervently. Ask God to search your heart and remove anything that is quenching the flow of His Spirit. Ask God to breakdown all barriers that are keeping you from being all that God created you to be.
Pray that God would allow revival to spread throughout His churches. Pray for a Mighty Awakening in your church and city. Pray that as revival spreads across the world, that millions will experience Jesus in a new and life changing way.
Are you ready for Revival to spread across your city? As believers we must be ready for the move of God. We must be ready to pray for and serve all those that God will bring to our communities. ~OC
Today’s a new day! With people a remnant is like a leftover, waste material, material for which there is no plan, purpose, or intended use. With God it is exactly opposite. God’s remnant is a beautiful scrap. The remnant of God is that for which all things were planned and purposed. Without that piece of remnant, everything else would be useless. ~OC
I Didn’t Lose My Miracle
Today’s a new day! Words have power. We can choose to speak words of encouragement or words of judgment. As Christians, our heart’s desire should be to build people up and speak words of hope and love into their lives. But it seems challenging for some Christians to share those encouraging words of hope when someone is suffering from a chronic illness and they don’t seem to be getting any better. Or maybe a person experienced a healing miracle only to have another health battle hit them.
That has been my experience, as I walk through my crazy beautiful health journey. As I shared above, our words are powerful. The tongue is a mighty weapon. It can be used to share love and hope or it can be used to hurt and destroy. I have experienced both over the years. Especially in the last few years.
In November of 2019, I experienced a beautiful healing in the name of Jesus. Not to toot my own horn, but I became the toast in many Christian circles. Everyone wanted to hear my story and have me pray for them. I was blessed with many speaking engagements. Heck, a documentary was even made about my story. Everyone wanted to hang out and spend time with me. Then came February 2021. I was diagnosed with Covid and my health took a turn for the worse. Today, my health is still a major issue. Things are also different in my social life.
Some who celebrated my healing back in 2019, are now the ones who send me messages questioning my faith because I am sick again. What sin caused me to lose my healing? You must have doubt about your healing. That is why God took it away. Todd, you are not praying correctly. Sadly, I am not making this up. Let me assure you, I do not fall for any of these false teachings.
I am not invited or included in many social or ministry gatherings these days. That’s okay. I am a big boy. I am thankful for the few who look past my health issues and just see me. Those that actually live out their faith.
Here are some things God has shared with me as I continue to walk in this crazy beautiful health journey. I will continue to walk in victory.
*Keep sharing the story He has given me.
*The miracle He performed in my life on November 3, 2019 was real.
*I did not lose my miracle.
*Be bold in sharing the true Gospel.
*God will continue to use me at the hospitals, doctors offices and infusion centers to bring hope and encouragement.
*God does not owe us anything. Everything we receive from him is a gift.
*Listen for the lessons God has for us during the trials of life.
*Suffering is part of our journey, but do not let it become our identity.
*Jesus suffered most of his life. Why do some Christians believe they should be exempt from suffering?
*I am not dealing with new health issues because of sin in my life.
*Some people will not receive their healing on this side of Heaven. That doesn’t mean you have done anything wrong. That doesn’t mean Jesus doesn’t hear your prayers. That doesn’t mean you don’t have enough faith. That doesn’t mean Jesus doesn’t love you. Stop listening to people who would tell you those lies.
*I will not experience another miracle on this side of heaven.
*Who suffered more than Jesus ?
As Christians we need to be speaking words of hope and love over everyone and truly stand with them regardless of what our eyes see or how long they need us. As God brings someone to mind who is dealing with long-term health issues, take a moment and pray not just for them but about your responses to this person. Is it loving, caring and nonjudgmental? Are you speaking life and hope over them? ~OC
Lessons In The Storm
Today’s a new day! We all deal with struggles in life. Whether your dealing with a serious health issue or just having a tough week, leaning into our faith can help us overcome any challenge that the world throws at us.
As I reflect on my own journey, I wanted to share a few ways I have dealt with the challenges of life.
1). Hold onto your Faith. As you are walking through the challenges of life, do not separate the challenge from your faith. Our faith is what will help guide us as we face the trials of life. Our faith is at the heart of who we are. Embrace the gift of faith as you walk through the storms of life.
I have chosen to incorporate prayer and worship music into my day. This gives me peace and comfort. I pray that God helps me overcome the storm I am facing. My hope is to better understand the love of God and what he desires for me. Do not allow your current circumstances to keep you from praising God.
2). Hold onto the peace of God. Never allow a person or situation steal your joy. That joy is a beautiful gift from God. What if you do not have that peace in your life? I encourage you to pray and ask God to fill your heart with his incredible peace. The peace of God is life changing.
3). Lay your burdens down before God. This is easier said than done. Most people tend to hold onto their burdens. We think we can deal with the problem ourselves. Let me assure you that is not true. During my own journey, I have learned to lay my struggles and burdens at the feet of God. I rely on his wisdom, strength and love that gives me the hope to overcome every obstacle that comes my way.
4). Find your circle. What do I mean by find your circle? I am talking about finding the people who will walk with you through those storms in your life. I encourage you to be careful who you allow in your circle. Not all of your loved ones or friends are designed to be in your circle. And that’s okay. I encourage you to pray and ask God who he wants in your circle. Finding your circle is one of the biggest decisions you will make, as you deal with the challenges of life. Do not rush the process.
5). Find your purpose. As you walk through the storms of life, I encourage you to find your purpose. When you find your purpose, you will find your peace. That does not mean your current circumstances will automatically change, but finding your purpose will change your attitude. Finding your purpose during the storm will allow you to be a blessing to someone else.
Remember that God is bigger than any storm we will face in life. I encourage everyone to lean into that beautiful truth. ~OC
Shine God Shine
Hello. God put this on my heart. Hopefully it encourages someone today. ~OC
Shine God Shine:
Dear God, as we walk through this journey, let your light shine through us. Destroy all the darkness and negativity around us. Dear God, let the warmth of your light, the brightness of your love, the sweetness of your joy, the beauty of your hope shine through us.
Dear God, let your light be our guide through the storms. Let your light brighten our path. Continue to let your light shine through us. Shine God Shine!