Paul's Spring Series at Chelten - 3/6/16

Paul is leading a weekly Bible study series at his church, Chelten Baptist. This week and next week's lessons are on "Generosity and the J-Curve." Please feel free to use the participant's guide for this week and next week's lesson.

Part 1:

Paul Sunday evening at Chelten 3/6/16, Part 1 from seeJesus on Vimeo.

Part 2:

Paul Sunday School at CHelton 3/6/16, Part 2 from seeJesus on Vimeo.

Exciting International Growth

 

I first met Miguel and Ivonne in Chile in 2010 where Miguel was (and is) a Senior Pastor of a church. They were responsible for 18 small group Bible studies and several small churches outside the city. They had invited me to their church to equip their leaders to teach the Person of Jesus Interactive Bible Study as part of their outreach and discipleship ministries.

Those three nights of training were just the beginning of a much larger relationship. Miguel joined me in 2013 in Cuba where we together equipped others. Last year Miguel partnered with Bob Loker (seeJesus Board Director) and me in Colombia to equip more leaders in two churches. As a result of those trainings, Bob and I had the privilege of inviting Miguel to be seeJesus’ first certified trainer from another country. He now helps us equip Person of Jesus leaders in the Spanish-speaking world.

We invited Miguel and Ivonne to come to the U.S. last September to lead a mini-training in Miami, and to come to the seeJesus main office in Telford, PA where they met Paul Miller and the other local staff members. Miguel and Ivonne share our passion in equipping and multiplying lovers of Jesus worldwide. His church and denomination graciously allows him to make three international trips per year on behalf of seeJesus. I have been in Miguel and Ivonne’s home over the years, and now they have been in Ellen and my home.

So, what’s the next step with Miguel and Ivonne? We will be co-leading Person of Jesus trainings for the next two weeks in Chile and Colombia. Now Ivonne is in the process of becoming a certified Person of Jesus trainer. Plus, we are expecting 180 pastors and church leaders to participant in these trainings.

These are exciting times for Miguel and Ivonne and seeJesus and we thank you for your continued prayers!

Blessings,

Staff Member, International Coordinator

New Year's Resolution to pray more?

If you are among the many who have made the New Year's resolution to pray more but could use some helpful tips, the Prayer Card Course is just what you need! This 30 day course and free companion manual offer offer helpful coaching and encouragement. And for a limited time, get $10 off this course using promo code PRAY2016. Happy New Year!

Introducing Jenny Chantz

For six years now, the seeJesus Board and I have been working and praying that God would provide someone to help run the ministry—currently I have eight direct reports! Several years ago, I learned that Jenny Chantz had stepped down from her position at Bethany Christian Services of Philadelphia to care for her son. She’d risen over a period of 24 years from a counselor to Executive Director. I wanted to approach her, but I didn’t have any money to fund her position, so I just wrote her name on my “Chief of Staff ” (COS) prayer card and prayed.

Jenny was a regular in my Sunday school class and would listen eagerly as I explained the “J-curve.” She mentioned to me one Sunday after class that she had just finished reading A Loving Life and immediately started re-reading it! It encouraged her heart at a time when she was weighed down by her son’s challenges and the passing of her father. She was struck by the concept of hesed love: one-way, stubborn love that doesn’t give up.

Over the winter I approached an old friend of our work to consider funding the considerable start up costs for a COS. He was interested, but no firm commitment. But that was enough for me to take a tentative step in Jenny’s direction. I continued to pray for the next couple of months and then in May I invited Jenny to lunch and said, “For the last couple of months I’ve been praying about having you join the seeJesus staff as our COS ... what do you think?” She was stunned and speechless. We agreed to pray about it.

Funds to start Jenny on a part-time basis this summer came from a small fund raised for this COS role. Then in August, Steve Byrd, our Director of Partner Relations, resigned. The Board and I felt we were best served as an organization by waiting on a new Director of Partner Relations and instead bringing Jenny on. So, on September 1, Jenny joined full-time as COS. Jesus is always telling us to “wait and pray”—they go hand-in-hand!

What does a Chief of Staff do? Essentially, the COS tracks, monitors, reviews, creates and assists staff with their projects and projects of her own. This is a unique role and not an easy one to fill. It requires the COS to be diplomatic and sensitive to the needs of the staff and the CEO; to have grace under pressure; and to be able to communicate effectively. I’m thankful for the gift of Jenny!

Fall Series at Chelten: Taking the form of a slave & Slave of all

Paul is leading a weekly Bible study series at his church, Chelten Baptist, with material from our forthcoming study A Jesus-Shaped Life. This week's lesson is titled, "Factions and the J-curve." Please feel free to use the participant's guide for this week's lesson. 

Part 1:

12-6-15_Paul Series at Chelton-part 1 from seeJesus on Vimeo.

 

 

Part 2:

12-6-15_Fall Series at Chelton-part 2 from seeJesus on Vimeo.

Monthly Update: November 2015

Dear Friend,

Thank you so much for praying for our little band of pilgrims at seeJesus! Here are a few things that have brought joy to my heart in the last few weeks….

• While a staff member was traveling for seminars earlier this month he got an invitation from a key training seminary to do Person of Jesus seminars in two Central Asian countries. We have prayed about this for several years now, so "our hearts leapt within us" at this prospect. That means we will also need to start working on addtional translations for our books and studies. Translation is such a critical part of our equipping the church. We don't want to give them "experiences of prayer" or of "Jesus" or "Bible study". We want to equip the church so they can teach one another.

• Julie and I are close to being finished with "A Jesus-Shaped Life"--course #1 called Liberated by the Gospel. We are thinking of changing the name to "The J-Curve" or "The Missing J-Curve". • Jon Hori (West Coast/East Asia Director) and I had a wonderful week out in Oregon doing multiple seminars. It was around the clock teaching for 5 days, but I was thankful to take Jon through an immersion in all our material. Jon saw the "deep structures" of the teaching.

• We are beginning our work on our new five year plan. We need wisdom from the Spirit to know how to focus. I often feel what Paul felt in I Corinthians 12, "my power is made perfect in weakness." Lately, I'm a bit more on the "weakness" side as opposed to the "power" side! But I've been soaking myself on Paul's writing on the J-curve in 1 and 2 Corinthians. What Romans and Galatians are to Justification by Faith, 1 and 2 Corinthians and Philippians are to the J-curve ("the fellowship of his suffering…and the power of his resurrection"). Knowing that my life is a story that has already been mapped by the story of His death and resurrection gives me real joy even during gray days. Corrie ten Boom's father used to tell her, "The best is yet to be."

I pray that  God richly blessed you this Thanksgiving with a heart that overflows with thanks!

In Him,

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Paul E. Miller

P. S. Dr. Bill Krewson who co-lead seeJesus' 2013 trip to Israel is leading a trip May, 2016. The news notwithstanding…this is a great time to visit Israel. One of our trainers, Timo, just came back and reported, "I felt safer than two years ago." It will likely be a small group of only about 20 people. Click here for more info.

Fall Series at Chelten: Imitating Jesus

Paul is leading a weekly Bible study series at his church, Chelten Baptist, with material from our forthcoming study A Jesus-Shaped Life. This week's lesson is titled, "Imitating Jesus" Please feel free to use the participant's guide for this week's lesson.  

11-29-15 Imitating Jesus from seeJesus on Vimeo.

Fall Series at Chelten: Paul's Descent

Paul is leading a weekly Bible study series at his church, Chelten Baptist, with material from our forthcoming study A Jesus-Shaped Life. This week's lesson is titled, "Paul's Descent" Please feel free to use the participant's guide for this week's lesson. 

Part 1:

11-15-15 Pauls Descent_Part 1 from seeJesus on Vimeo.

 Part 2:

11-15-15 Pauls Descent_Part 2 from seeJesus on Vimeo.

How Do We Measure God's Blessing?

During a break at a seminar at a high-powered church, I started chatting with the director of a care ministry associated with the church. I worked in the inner city for ten years, teaching and then starting a multi-racial Christian school, so I have a cultivated love for the people in the city.

When I asked the director about this care ministry, the director said they'd grown from x-million to y-million over the last few years, and how many thousands of hours had been donated. I pressed further, but continued to hear numbers, not love. When I think about this conversation, I recall an earlier version of myself in the 1980s that dreamed of running a million dollar mission. My motives weren't all bad, but that million dollar number was a "worship center," a source of life for me. It eventually left me empty, as all idols do. My experience with that emptiness was so profoundly negative that I was actually pleased when seeJesus income fell short of $1 million this year, ending June 30!

Numbers are not meaningless. They give you a sense of what is going on. We've provided multiple numbers for you in this report to give you a sense of God's blessing on our work. When I talk to a pastor, especially in a young church plant, I'm eager to hear how many are attending. I want them to do well, to succeed, to get his salary paid. But when numbers become our primary "metric" (a way of measuring your success), then we're in danger of creating an "alternative center of life"—an idol. 

In the business world, using total income as a metric is actually a bit strange, almost meaningless. Businesses measure profit which in turn a ects the overall value of the company. at's why Wall Street analysts say "buy" with a company that sells an unprofitable division. The company is getting smaller, reducing its total revenue, but increasing its profit and thus its value. 

But money or total size is often the primary metric in the world of missions or church. Many missions tell their donors
how many staff they have as in "we grew from 75 to 100 staff this year." That is exciting, but it doesn't tell us anything. What did that mission produce?

Some 35 years ago, I was riveted by Gene Getz's book, The Measure of a Church, where he studied Paul's metrics for the churches he planted. Paul measures faith and love. So Paul tells the Thessalonians that he has "heard of their faith and their love." That's Paul's bottom line. Are they growing in their union with Christ? Are they growing in their love for Jesus? Are they growing in their love for one another? Faith and love are almost impossible to quantify, but I pray for them, think about them, and work for them incessantly.

Everything we do at seeJesus is focused on creating faith and love in the church. Our books, seminars, and courses are "jars of clay" that carry faith and love into the church.

Here's an example of a metric that has encouraged us. If you click on Amazon reviews of A Praying Life, you'll see lots of
customer reviews, but the number doesn't tell you what is going on. But if you dig into the reviews, you see multiple signs of faith growing. Here are some recent examples:
• "This book has helped me to break prayer out of the formulaic ritual and become more natural and life-giving."
• "Best contribution...to the discussion on prayer is his treatment of the spirit of cynicism and how it permeates our life, killing our faith to pray. This section alone has changed our family's spiritual walk in many areas, giving us the mental and spiritual tools (a renewed mind) to fight the good fight."
• "I feel as if scales have been removed from my eyes. I loved the message in this book, especially on cynicism. It has really helped me change my attitude and vision."

Our staff and trainers see the same thing on the front lines when they lead our seminars. Twenty-five years ago, God laid it on my heart to build an ark of faith and love that would preserve and protect the church in the coming evil age. So this Annual Report is our "ark update!"

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Christ Community Church: Paul's Sermon on Luke 16:19-31

In this sermon at Christ Community Church (Lakeland, FL), Paul Miller guides listeners through the famous parable about the Rich Man.

He uses the acronym EASI for weath without generosity: Elevates. Accelerates. Selfish. Isolates.

Listen here.

Fall Series at Chelten: Factions and the Cross

Paul is leading a weekly Bible study series at his church, Chelten Baptist, with material from our forthcoming study A Jesus-Shaped Life. This week's lesson is titled, "Factions and the Cross." Please feel free to use the participant's guide for this week's lesson. 

Part 1:

Fall Series at Chelton: 11-1-15 Factions and the Cross, Part 1 from seeJesus on Vimeo.

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