I Am They – Christian Band

Are you ready to hear some great Christian music?

Perhaps even stomp your foot a little because the songs are catchy, the rhythms are engaging, and you just can’t help yourself?

I’m talking about music from a Christian band out of Nevada called, “I Am They.”

Have you heard them yet?

Let me help you out with that  🙂

There’s so much negative in the world, it’s nice to turn off the TV, and hear some tunes that can instantly put you in a better mood.

Their latest album, “Trial And Triumph” dropped in March of this year.

Here’s my favorite song on the album, “My Feet Are On The Rock.”

Am I right?

They look like they’re having the time of their lives while singing that song.

Pure joy.

It’s hard to hold back a smile when you hear them sing. This song is going in my iTunes library for sure.

I Am They Album – “Trial and Triumph”

You may be wondering how the group came up with their name, I Am They. The band’s name was inspired by a chapter in the Bible, specifically John 17.

Jesus is praying to the Father for the protection and sanctification of His disciples as “they” would go forth to proclaim the Word.

for the words which You gave Me I have given to them; and they received them and truly understood that I came forth from You, and they believed that You sent Me.  – John 17:8NASB.

I listened to the entire “Trial and Triumph” album, and loved it.

Not every song is a foot-stomper like my favorite one, even though there’s a banjo involved.

What every song does have are beautiful harmonies and uplifting lyrics.

The band’s members (Matt Hein, Jon McConnell, Abbie Parker, Justin Shinn and Sara Palmer) are described as a Pop-Acoustic Worship Group.

Their music is soothing to the soul and a powerful reminder of God’s unchanging love and limitless grace.

There’s often a misconception among unbelievers that Christians have a cushy life and nothing bad ever happens to men and women of faith. Nothing could be further from the truth.

The artists are refreshingly candid in their bios. They share their testimonies to give us a glimpse of some of the difficult struggles they’ve come through, with God’s grace, from things like drug addictions to failed relationships.

Concert Dates

Depending on where you live, I Am They just may be coming to your town. You can find their tour information here.

I can’t wait to hear more from this group!

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*Scripture quotation is from New American Standard Bible (NASB) Copyright © 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977, 1995 by The Lockman Foundation.

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Spiritual Armor

Suiting Up

Do you have a favorite football team?

I’m a New Orleans Saints fan through and through. I get excited when football season starts.

Maybe, just maybe, the Saints will win the Super Bowl again.

the big game

I bet your own favorite team is probably coming to mind right now.

Here’s a question.

Have you ever tried to imagine yourself in their shoes?

Pretend you’re a football player

All 250 pounds-plus of you is getting ready to go into the game.

Now, imagine there’s a rule that says you can’t wear any protective gear.

Helmet of protection

That means no helmet to protect your head.

No shoulder pads to prevent shoulder-to-shoulder collisions.

Nix the gloves too, so your hands are now vulnerable to impact.

Your neck roll is not allowed to prevent whiplash.

You can forget about the mouth guard.

And, finally, all knee, thigh, and hip pads, plus any of the protective wear to cover your privates must go.

Sound a little scary?

Now, your coach says, “Get out there on the field.”

You’d think your coach was crazy, right?

No way coach, give me my gear back!

Spiritual armor

Spiritual Armor

As Bible-believing Christians, how can we, likewise, go into spiritual battles without our spiritual armor?

The whole world now seems like one big spiritual battle – those of us who believe in the one true God, and those who do not.

No doubt, those who mock our faith are very loud and aggressive.

Are we really prepared for this?

It is hard to imagine anyone suiting up for the (football) game without an awareness of the sometimes bloody struggle that is about to ensue. But I have yet to see a player remove his helmet and head for the stadium exit because he finds it all just too rough.

 

Yet when it comes to Christian living, the field is evacuating quickly because the players have never read the rules nor understood the game plan.

 

Alistair Begg, Christian pastor and author, Truth For Life Teaching Ministry.

Questions to ponder:

  • Are we actively reading and studying the Bible?
  • Are we attending a church that teaches the authentic Word of God?

We’ve all seen the apostasy starting to infiltrate churches – the dumbing down of Scripture, false teachers, fake signs and wonders, false conversions, the list goes on.

If you’ve looked into an Apologetics study, but then gave up, please reconsider.

You just never know when you’ll be in a situation where you need to defend your faith in our contentious world.

Two excellent books in my iPad library that I can recommend on the subject are:

1. “God’s Crime Scene” by J. Warner Wallace.

2. “Tactics”” by Gregory Koukl.

Both are highly rated, helpful books, to add to your spiritual armor.

Let’s not forget our identity in Christ

It’s easy to get into heated debates (especially on Facebook).

Our intent to peacefully share the Good News on social media can take a wrong turn when the attacks against our faith get publicly ugly. There’s absolutely no reason to respond in kind. That’s not who we are.

Remember Who we belong to!

This short video emphasizes it well.

 God bless…

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*Alistair Begg quotation, of Truth for Life teaching ministry. Reference: Made For His Pleasure, Moody Press, 1996, p. 108. https://gracequotes.org/author-quote/alistair-begg/

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Stained Glass

The Beauty of Stained Glass

Do you love the look of stained glass?

It’s so beautiful!

stained glass work

Masterfully-crafted and hand-cut, down to the finest detail.

Dancing reflections as the sun shines through.

Stained Glass Art

I remember seeing stained glass windows in churches when I was growing up.

*Artist rendering.

Each piece of glass, from the darker shades to the light, contributes to the uniqueness of each design.

Kind of like the pieces of our lives.

We are all different – with our own distinct challenges and life story.

And, yet in our humanity, we share in something spectacular.

Each one of us is God’s creation, His masterpiece in the making.

Why say, “in the making?”

None of us are truly “good,” in the authentic sense of the word. The Bible is clear that we’re all sinners.

The Father loves us too much to want us to stay the way we are.

How should we respond?

With humility.

Spend time in the Bible, and ask His forgiveness of our sins.

Although we can never achieve “good” in our lifetimes, as Christians, we have a “best” to look forward to – eternal joy with Him.

God’s Masterpiece

Fellow Faithwriter, Elizabeth Hexberg, wrote a beautiful poem I thought you might enjoy.

Think of the pieces of your own life and what awaits those who put their trust in Him.

Stained Glass

by Elizabeth Hexberg
10/17/11
Free to Share

Shards of broken glass, and more.
Littering
a concrete floor.
Every color.
Every shade.
Every shape of shattered made.

So cold, so dull and dirty
yet,
so much more,
lest we forget.

The Artist has a bigger view.
The brokenness of me and you.
Files the edges,
one by one.
Holds them up to catch the sun.
Piece by piece with Love and Sear.
Ever precious.
Ever dear.

Gentle rebirth of the soul.
A thousand shards to make us whole.
A lifetimes crafting to get right.
Lifted High to catch the Light.
To Shine with every wonder known,
when all the pieces find their Home.

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* This stained glass rendering design released into the public domain, via pixabay. It is a derivative work of the original, and is licensed under a Creative Commons CC0 License . 

**Poetry shared from article url: https://www.faithwriters.com/article-details.php?id=185177, Article Source: https://www.faithwriters.com/member-profile.php?id=24223

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Not Just Any Vacation

How would you like to take a vacation?

Not just any vacation, mind you, but a vacation with a purpose.

Where could it possibly be?

Allow me to give you a few hints.

Think “beautiful beaches.”

By the way, that’s not me up there parasailing in the photo below.

I left my daredevil pants at home.  😉

the beautiful beaches of Cancun

Give me a beach chair, some fish tacos, and the sea breezes in my hair and I’m a happy camper.

There’s more!

How about “awesome sunsets” guaranteed?

God’s majesty in the clouds were on beautiful display. We even had a rainbow one day.

Have you guessed where yet?

Creator of Heaven and Earth

How about seeing dear friends again and making new ones?

Love Song Cancun

Where can you find all this?

The answer is…

The Love Song Couples Getaway!

Cancun Love Song Getaway

The Love Song Couples Getaway Cancun 2018

For the past four years, my husband and I have attended a Love Song vacation.

I can’t recommend it highly enough.

We’ve enjoyed our trips to the Bahamas, but this year we were thrilled to go to Cancun for the first time.

I’d go again in a heartbeat.

We definitely felt safe, and staying in the “hotel zone” was a valuable travelers tip.

How was the food?

I’m glad you asked.  😉

I wouldn’t hesitate to describe the food and the service at the Ritz-Carlton as “outstanding.” We felt welcomed from the moment we got there. Gracious, friendly, people, and A+ customer service.

Our room at the Ritz-Carlton had an incredible view.

There’s nothing quite like waking up, opening up the sliding glass balcony doors to hear the beach waves lapping along the shoreline.

Not just any vacation

Behind The Music

Another highlight of our week-long adventure was hearing top-selling Christian artists perform in an intimate setting with photo ops included!

Artists like:

Jeremy and Adie Camp

Matthew West

Adam Agee from Audio Arenaline

Michael Tate and Duncan Philips from the Newsboys

By the way, Matthew West, in my humble opinion, stole the show!

I’ve heard his music before, but had no idea how engaging he would be on stage. He had the whole crowd of 300 couples in stitches, even composed a song parody on the spot.

But, when it was time to sing praise and worship songs together, it was soul-stirring.

Dr. Gary Chapman spoke about keeping your marriage alive and improving the Love Languages between you and your spouse.

from Dr. Gary Chapman

Brothers And Sisters In Christ

It’s a blessing to meet other Christians from all over the United States. There was even a couple from Finland this year.

cherished friendships

Thanks to Love Song, my husband and I have cemented friendships with some amazing people that we’ve grown to love and consider as family.

On our own time, we’ve traveled to places like Boston and California to see our new friends.

Vacation With A Purpose

Everyone who attends a Love Song Couples Getaway is blessed in so many ways.

Janet H. and her husband have attended three of these trips.

Love Song for a couple

Love Song also gives us the chance to share our prayer requests and pray for each other.

“Someone that we met two years ago – she’s very ill with lupus. To be able to gather friends together, lay hands on her, and pray was such an incredible God-moment.  I had my hands on her and she was shaking and had tears, and you could feel God at work. Where else can you do that? This has just been awesome. And then Jeremy Camp leading worship today. He’s just on fire for the Lord and what a way to start the day, I wish I could do this every day!” – Janet H., Cancun 2018 Couples Getaway.

Many thanks to Troy and Marisha Tyler from Love Song for offering these memorable twice-a-year opportunities for Christian couples from across the country to meet and worship together, even if it’s just for a week.

Christian P. from CA agrees:

Life-Giving Water For Those In Need

Did you know it costs approximately $5000 to build a well?

That’s a lot of money and why I’m so grateful for the Love Song Foundation.

A portion of the proceeds from the Getaway Trip reservations, that’s from hundreds of couples each year, goes towards the building of wells in India.

Coming Up

Two Love Song Couples Getaway trips are planned for 2019 – one in Maui and the other in Kauai.

This short video will give you an idea of the fun that awaits:

The Love Song Couples Getaways quickly sell out, so you’ll want to book your trip as soon as possible.

Go at least once and I bet you and your spouse will go again the next year!

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Discerning False Teachers

We Should Be Discerning False Teachers

Discerning false teachers

Have you ever heard the howling sounds of a pack of coyotes?

They’re fascinating, but also a little frightening.

Late one night, my husband and I heard some loud, high-pitched, noises outside. They were so loud we could hear them over the television.

We cracked open our back door and realized that we were hearing the yipping and barking of coyotes in the woods nearby.

It was pitch black dark and we couldn’t “see” anything, but we sure heard them, several yards behind our house.

From the sound of them, you could tell they had a fresh kill and were whipped into a frenzy.

Glad we didn’t go for a late-night walk.
They’re so close!

These coyotes creep in and devour their unsuspecting prey.

Kind of reminds me of what has happened in some churches across the United States.

If you do the research, you hear sad news such as this church or that church is compromising the Bible and teaching instead a counterfeit gospel.

These teachings slowly eat away at Scripture piece by piece so that His Word hardly resembles what God originally inspired.

Honoring God’s Word

Since when does God’s Word need to conform to the world because a majority don’t want to hear about sin anymore and their need for a Savior?

“Unfortunately, preachers who distort God’s Word are all too common today. Sometimes this springs from a sincere desire to soften hard hearts, but hearts aren’t changed by compromise.”

 

– Alistair Begg, Christian pastor, Truth For Life Teaching Ministry, and Author.

A Healthy Balance

Is your church still teaching about Sin, God’s forgiveness, grace, mercy, Heaven, Hell and the End Times?

If not, why not?

Is the emphasis in your church “only” on the love of God?

That may sound good initially, but there are important fundamental truths missing if the consequences of sin are never discussed.

Christianity-Lite bothers me because eternal lives are at stake.

God is a Loving Father and He is also our Righteous Judge.

The last thing churches need to do is compromise God’s Word and leave out the message that we desperately need Salvation through Jesus Christ.

Real Issues

need to be discerning

Do any of these concerning statements sound familiar?

The Bible is offensive.

 The Bible is too hard.

 God is Love. He will not judge unrepentant sinners.

 If a person just believes hard enough, God will make them rich and prosperous.

 Rich people don’t deserve God’s grace and mercy like the rest of us.

 There are many paths to God, Christianity is too exclusive.

 Universalism is the key to peace and unity in this world.

I heard a popular Christian artist say a few days ago at a concert that he believes “a revival is coming.”

We need a holy revival where people aren’t afraid to stand up for their faith, have the courage to love and care for others, but also teach people about their need for the Savior.

The apostle Paul never compromised the truths of the gospel to make them more palatable to the masses. He laid out the pure gospel message. A beautiful thing happened, churches spread throughout the Roman Empire.

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*Pastor Alistair Begg quotation, as quoted from Christian quotes.info

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