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Happy Father’s Day!

I know for myself, there are few things I love more than praying with my kids. Before going to bed each night, my kids take turns praying and every so often my oldest son, Hudson, will randomly pray for me.

“Pray that dad would know we love him.”
“Pray that dad would know he’s special.”
“Pray that dad would have a fun day tomorrow!”
“Pray that Jesus would be with dad.”

I’m always amazed by how powerful his simple prayers can be.

Father’s Day is coming up this Sunday. Whether the dad in your life is a rookie dad or a seasoned veteran, I’d encourage us to find the time to pray for him. Lord knows, dads need all the prayers we can get!

Here are a few specific ways we can pray for our dads:

Pray for your dad to feel loved, respected, and honored.

Pray that on a daily basis he’d sense God’s encouragement and love in his life. Going one step further, we need to actually encourage our dad personally! Just like moms, it’s so easy to take our dads for granted. Is your dad awesome? Is he always there when you need him? If yes, does he know that you feel this way? Even if he’s not perfect, have you told him he’s pretty great? Some dads try to act all tough, like they don’t need words of encouragement, but they do! One of the oldest commands in the Bible is to honor our dads (Ex 20:12). Tell your dad that you’re thankful for him. That you’re proud of him. That you admire him. That you love him. And do it often (especially on Father’s Day!)

Pray for your dad’s shortcomings.

It can be a hard thing to come to terms with… but your dad is not perfect! He’s probably going to let you down at some point. If he hasn’t, he will. No matter the situation, it’s always important to remember that he’s human just like you are. He make mistakes. He has flaws. Despite his best efforts, he needs your grace. Pray for him, but also pray for your own feelings towards him. Maybe you need to extend your dad forgiveness this Father’s Day. Do both of yourselves a favor and love your dad for who he is – flaws and all.

Pray your dad’s walk with Jesus and his family would take priority over his career.

One of the greatest struggles men wrestle with is the work-life balance. I know because I struggle with this myself. The temptation to “gain the whole world and forfeit your soul” is for-real. Pray that your dad would fall more in love with Jesus. That yes, he would be a great banker, teacher, or mechanic but also that he’d be “successful” in his relationships with his wife, kids, family, friends, and his walk with the Lord before anything else.

Pray for fruit in your dad’s life.

In Galatians 6, we’re told about the “fruits of the Spirit”. Basically when God is present in our life, we’re told that things like love, joy, peace, and so on will begin to show up within our lives. I can’t speak for all guys/dads, but three of the “fruits” that I know I need more of in my life are: gentleness, faithfulness, & self-control.

Gentleness – Pray that your dad would be a gentle giant. That his life would reflect our gentle Heavenly Father. That he would be slow to anger and have patience with others… especially his family.

Faithfulness – That he’d be faithful. If he’s married (or in a relationship) that he’d be faithful in his marriage. But also that he’d be faithful and consistent in his life as a whole. That his ‘yes’ would always be ‘yes.’ That everything he says, he’d follow through with.

Self-control – That he would have self-control when it comes to his private life, but also when it comes to his words. That he would have freedom and would run from temptation. That he’d live a life of integrity.

This Father’s Day maybe you were planning on getting your dad a grill, fishing rod, or an ugly tie. Go ahead and do that. But also find the time to pray for him. Speaking from experience, there are few things better.

This Father’s Day maybe you were planning on getting your dad a grill, fishing rod, or an ugly tie. Do that but also find the time to pray for him.

June One Thing: Soles4Souls

Each month, we focus on doing One Thing as a church to show the love of Christ to others. In June, we partnered with Soles4Souls, which is a non profit organization that helps fight poverty through collecting and distributing shoes and clothing. As a church, our hope was to collect 1,500 pairs of shoes….we dominated our goal and were able to collect 1,946 pairs of shoes! Thanks so much for helping us reach and surpass our goal!

For more info about Soles4souls, please visit their website

Next 9 Weeks!

Hey Embrace!

I hope this finds you well. Things couldn’t possibly be any better here on this end. Honestly, I feel like it’s one of the best seasons of life that I’ve ever been in. Family-wise. Church-wise. Walk with Jesus-wise. Grateful for so much.

Something I wanted to fill you in on. Five or so months ago, I was encouraged by some of the leadership to consider taking some weeks off this summer from preaching. Not for any negative reasons (at all), actually just the exact opposite. This September we’ll be celebrating our 10th Birthday as a church. We’re in the process of currently praying about additional campuses. God is moving in awesome ways. I honestly believe the next 12 months will be the best 12 months we’ve ever had. I’m pumped about what’s to come.

At first, I wasn’t crazy about the idea. My hope is that we would never “take the summer off” as a church and so I wondered: who would preach? After talking, I became more excited. The next 9 weeks, the messages will truly be amazing! James Barnett is covering a group of the weeks. We have our friend Carlos Whittaker joining us. We also have one of the most sought after speakers in the WORLD, Jefferson Bethke, who will be joining us as well. Honestly… the lineup is amazing!

I’m only taking a step back from preaching for this short season, nothing else will change. It’s not a sabbatical or 9 weeks off.  I’ll still be doing my thing. But with the additional 20 hours that I’ll gain each week from not preparing a message, the hope from leadership is to focus on a few different things: Vision (where are we going as a church), Growing (learning as much as I can), and Connecting (with staff, people at Embrace, and others). They see it as priceless that I’m doing so.

Again, I was reluctant at first, but I have to say I’m thrilled. I’ve already scheduled to meet 1-on-1 with a lot of our staff (something that’s nearly impossible on my regular schedule). I’ve already had the chance to sit with some pastors and leaders from around the world. I’ve been challenged by some of the best on things like prayer. I already feel like I’ve learned so much. Having the time to sit, and dream, and pray about this upcoming year as a church… is such a gift. The additional time to be still with God is awesome.

Again, we’re not taking the summer off and I pray that you wouldn’t either. God wants to move in us this summer. He wants to grow our love for Him this summer. He has a heart to reach the next person for Jesus this summer. And I’ve never been more excited.

Love you Embrace.

May One Thing: Diapers & Wipes

Each month, we focus on doing One Thing as a church to show the love of Christ to others. This month, we are partnering with Compassion Child Care and Metro Hope to collect diapers and baby wipes. Both ministries help working families in need that are experiencing life controlling issues. We’d love to have you contribute to this month’s One Thing by picking up some diapers or wipes and dropping them off at any campus’ One Thing area by May 29th. As a church, we collected over 33,000 items for these two ministries. THANK YOU!

Tasha’s Story

Each of us has a story. Here is a part of Tasha’s.