Saturday, October 18, 2008

Removing Splinters

Removing Splinters

The following article from the New Your Times was forwarded to me from my Dad in Myrtle Beach. One of Dad’s friends has some “history” with military aircraft and he forwards a regular flow of pictures and information about military aircraft and sometimes military life to Dad. Dad then sends it along to me.

Resisting the urge to commentate on the article before you read it I’ll hold my comments on why I decided to post this until the bottom of the article.

This appeared in the New York Times

What is there in the experience of a naval carrier pilot that would help prepare a person to be president? Beneath the derring-do that is part of the successful aviator's image are many fine qualities - some natural, some learned.

Above all, you must be true to yourself. Delusional people rarely survive the harsh demands of carrier flying. You cannot cheat your way through a carrier landing, or ignore the reality of a dark night and a pitching deck.

You must be absolutely committed to a cause greater than yourself, because your life is what you wager each time you take off on a mission . And you must be a team player. Many other team members are needed to operate both the ship and your aircraft, and you need to provide leadership.

A carrier pilot must also learn to accept criticism of his or her own performance, from both peers and overseers. The landing signal officer on an aircraft carrier administers a public debriefing and critique of every landing, and a grade is assigned to every pass the pilot makes at the deck. These grades and the pilot's performance ranking are displayed publicly for all to praise or ridicule. The psychological pressure of this culture is the whetstone that successful carrier pilots use to sharpen their skills -and the grinder that drives some from the profession.

The Navy considers its pilots to be officers first and aviators second. Most carrier pilots lead divisions of perhaps 20 sailors, so they must learn to balance the pressures of flying with the demands of leading. And this is just during peacetime. In times of combat, the pressures are increased exponentially.

So what do we have that could enhance a presidential resume.? Honesty, integrity, courage, commitment, love of country, leadership, capacity for self-criticism, ability to multitask and grace under pressure. These are great qualities indeed for anyone who aspires to become the leader of the free world.

- STEPHEN R. GRAY, author of "Rampant Raider: An A-4 Skyhawk Pilot in Vietnam"

I posted this not to make a point about who you should vote for to become our next President, although that would be a good reason. I posted it because parts of speak to my
Quest to understand my purpose.

Like many Christian leaders, workers and writers I hear a different drum beat, we dance to music others do not hear. Because of this we sometimes feel somewhat alone. After all, who does a Prophet turn to for advice?

Mr. Gray’s article hits the nail on the head. Although I don’t think it was not his intention to do so he has laid out some of the Keys to discovering one’s place in the Kingdom.

“You must be true to yourself”, the yourself that is committed to and following Christ.

“You must be a team player” perhaps the hardest pill for me and possibly you to swallow. Christianity is not a solo sport. To be a Christian and to live a Christian life our spirits need to be connected with others of like mind.

“Learn to accept criticism” we must be humble.

“The pilot's performance ranking are displayed publicly for all to praise or ridicule.” We must be transparent, the truth will always show through any facade we attempt to hide behind.

“Officers first and aviators second” we are all called to be leaders, regardless of our age or experience in Christ. Every Christian is commissioned to be a light to the world.

“They must learn to balance the pressures of flying with the demands of leading” Perhaps no other task is so difficult as the constant attempt to learn to balance the demands and desires of this life with those of the Spirit. Work ,family, fun, and Service all have a place finding the balance is an art form.

My last point was Mr. Gray’s second. I decided it speaks the most to the Quest so I have placed it last.
“You must be absolutely committed to a cause greater than yourself”. Christ has not called us to a life of spectatorship. Listening to the right music, attending the right church, having a fish bumper-sticker on your car, all have their place but they are just parts of the whole. As Christians our spirits cry out that we devote our lives to something much greater then us. Since my proclamation to discover “the answer” I have been bombarded with needs and opportunities to become part of “things” larger then I. I have also discovered that “becoming part of” is much more then just “joining”. Possibly “becoming part of” is not descriptive enough
grafted better expresses the concept I am expressing. In exploring these opportunities to serve “the answer” begins to come into focus. I don’t truly possess “the answer”, yet, but I am convinced that committing to a work of God that is greater then me is a step in the right direction.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

"Groupthink" Sometimes it's a good thing

Writing an article about a suggested topic is always difficult for me. Very recently I joined High Calling Blogs. Although they do not require it they request that you place and article on your blog to tell others about it and why you joined.

The mere request causes me to begin questioning why I did join. Not in a bad or self- doubtful way, more as a curiosity. What caused me to want to join the group, particularly because I’m not a group type person.

The first and most obvious reason is that I am always on the lookout for ways to “grow” my blog readership. It didn’t take long for me to realize that being part of a group helps to draw traffic. However, High Calling’s intention is not primarily to generate readership.

I found my way to High Calling after joining Christian Bloggers Online. After a few clicks on their Blog-Roll I was at The Writing on the Wall who displays a badge. With such a cool badge I had to check them out.

I didn’t need to spend much time at before I realized I could learn a lot from being here. The quality of writing, the differing voices and viewpoints all called that I spend more time there.

Then this morning I began to wonder, isn’t this like preaching to the choir? If the majority of readers are Christian bloggers (writers), how will being a part of this group help me to reach those who need to hear from Christ the most? The answer to that question came faster then the question itself. We, those who blog for Jesus, need this type of a community and fellowship the most. We, those who attempt to pen Things of the Spirit, need to be fed, schooled, encouraged, challenged, exhorted, and sometimes- to have the hot air let out of our starched white shirts.

Click on the cool badge on the right of my page, it will be worth the read.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

The Higher Calling

Consider the Missionary
Sitting in a church service on Mission Sunday was never my cup of tea. For some reason I found those who spoke ,,,, well, lets just say they didn’t hold my attention .

I mentioned last week that I recently re-connected with a brother laboring in the mission fields of Columbia. Actually “laboring” doesn’t really fit in some respects. Andrew and Kathy McMillan have been used by the Lord to lead more Souls into The Kingdom then I can image. To use Andrew’s words “there is a great hunger for the Lord”. I asked him to forward me something I could share on the Blog. Below are three of his news letters.

Like many, for many years I was very comfortable thinking to myself, “why go all the way to --------------, when there are so many in need here?” When the mission offering was taken I would give a bit, but I just didn’t get it. Having spoken to Andrew a few times over the last week and hearing about the hunger the people have for the Word of God in Columbia I find myself a bit envious. Not so envious that I’m ready to head off to Columbia. Far be it from me though to challenge the Lord and suggest that “I wouldn’t go if called”.

If you, like me, really don’t “get it” please take a moment and drop me an Email and I’ll forward Andrew’s news letters, with the pictures along to you. stofsoul@gmail

If you are looking for a real blessing, spend a couple minutes chatting with The Lord of the Harvest about the work Andrew, Kathy and their 2 sons are doing in Columbia. ( I have and intend to continue doing so) There are many more working with them there, I dont know their names yet, and literally thousands are coming to the Lord through this work.


The news letters Andrew sent had some wonderful pictures in them but I’m blog challenged and haven’t been able to pull the pictures out of the documents and post them, YET

March 2008

When God told me to come to Colombia 21 years ago, I said I would go for 2 years. He tricked me. Good thing because we are seeing thousands coming to Christ, hundreds of leaders trained and several churches planted.

We have about 6 evangelism teams ready to have crusades throughout the city. We just need sound equipment for them to do the crusades every week. Consuelo, one of our ushers, has started a ministry to hundreds of poor children and their moms in a very dangerous area of town. She put a down payment on piece of property and is living there among the people. Another $12,000 will pay off the mortgage. Theses people are heroes.

The A&C Corner

We really want to expand the TV and Video ministry. The most faithful guy on our team here is Giovanni. He used to work for Pablo Escobar killing people but now he is serving God big time. We seriously need some new cameras. If you know of any church or TV station that is getting rid of their equipment, please put us in touch with them. Please write us at Or call on our Vonage # 561 427 7466. Thanks.
You can see the short video we did on Youtube: or just search Miracle in Medellin on youtube.

We are so grateful for your heart caring for people so far away. The light that shines further shines brighter at home. Being partners with us means you have a part with God in all that is happening here. You who gave in 2007 really made a difference.

Good News from Colombia
The McMillan Family
April 2008

God promised, “If you draw close to Me, I will draw close to you.” We have a new hunger to pray, worship and devour His word. We are enjoying the ministry. We are happy missionaries! Heaven’s fire is falling in the church. A young man came for the first time, tackles me and cries out with tears streaming down his face, “I never knew I could feel this way”. An old lady who had been in a legalistic church for 20 years starts punching me hysterically, screaming, “I never have been so happy.” That is a strange way of saying thanks. One touch of God can change people into radical disciples of Jesus.

On March 16, we saw more people in the bullring than ever. We are so proud of the people bringing their friends to Christ. We are following up on 500 decision cards. So far we have a documented case of a man healed of Parkinson disease and a lady healed of cancer. Let us know if you need prayer for healing.

Believe with us for a crusade truck, which would help us have 3-4 crusades throughout the city each week, followed up with new home groups and buses to bring the people to church.

The A&C Corner
Andrew Michael & Christian
God just opened up the main local TV channel for our program! We need some help to upgrade our equipment. Feel free to write us at or call on our Vonage . We are graduating from home school this year; so we now are praying about college or doing a TV internship with Pastor Joel Osteen for 6 months first.
You can see the short video we did on Youtube:
or just search Miracle in Medellin on youtube.

Wish list: We need a second car to replace our 1986 Mazda. We fixed the frig and joined a gym! Kathy dreams about new furniture but needs a laptop.
Refuge center grows to 84 kids.

Next bullring will be May 3 (The Prophetic Fire Conference) to honor Pastors Randy & Marcela MacMillan and to edify the churches of Medellin. We expect over 12,000 people. We also have started new outreaches for children in the extreme north of the city. More later.

By giving and praying, you are right here with us in God’s eyes. Thank you.
Make checks out to: Mission South America & mail to:
MSA / Pastor Andrew & Kathy McMillan
P.O. Box 12523
Norfolk. VA 23541
To speak to us directly, call 561 427 7466 (Vonage) or write:

Peace from Colombia

You are closer than you think
I wish you could stand be at our side during the altar call. This week 200 people came forward to receive Christ. Each one has a story. One man, who committed adultery, finds the surprise of forgiveness from God and from his wife. A youth screams out for freedom from basuca, the cheap street cocaine. A single Mom finds the Man who will never leave her. An old woman who prayed all her life to idols, meets the living God. A witch finds peace.

But you are at our side by supporting us. You get the same reward. David said that they who stay back with the baggage get the same reward as those who go forth into the battle. And we know you have your won battles, too. But by teaming up with us, we believe that the anointing flowing here will flow richly in your lives, too.

2000 kids in a special outreach Girl from the refuge center receives Refuge Center
medical attention
You help this happen:
*Our church plants are growing
*The churches are growing in unity and strength. Kathy trains 500 women of the city for intercession. Andrew is the chairman for a city-wide crusade in October.
*The 3 day retreats for new believers are growing, Our retreat center is jammed every weekend.
*Our Refuge Center for the children is packed with 107 kids; plus a new house just for training the moms how to work with honor and walk free from drugs and prostitution.
*Signs and wonders keep us amazed. Just this week 3 more people were healed of cancer with the proof from doctors.


Believe with us
*To see the whole city ablaze with the fire of God
*We are about to launch a short daily program on the main Medellin channel. Andrew Michael & Christian graduated from high school and are giving one year to the ministry before college. Pray for them for favor & finances.
*To improve the sound quality in the auditorium (Faith comes by hearing).

By giving and praying, you are right here with us in God’s eyes. Thank you.
Make checks out to: Mission South America & mail to:
MSA / Pastor Andrew & Kathy McMillan
P.O. Box 12523
Norfolk. VA 23541
We have a new 7 minute video showing the overall work here. For a free copy, call us 561 427 7466 (Vonage) or write us: