Book tour!

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I am so excited to announce an Eyes of A Lion book tour coming this fall! Come to one of these events with a person in your life who has had to face a sad season or doesn’t know Jesus. We will talk about the anchor we have for our souls and how impossible pain can lead to incredible power! I believe every one of these stops will be supernatural and Heaven will touch earth.

The message at each event will be filled with hope for people who are hurting and an opportunity for lost to be found. It is also an opportunity to give Lenya’s life a chance to continue to impact people. I’ll talk about major themes from the book (and maybe you’ll even have a chance to hear from my wife Jennie and daughters Alivia, Daisy and Clover!) There will be music from our band featuring original songs written after Lenya went to heaven and media elements giving a personal glimpse into her life.

Stay tuned to www.eyesofalion.com for more details on each of our tour stops. Our family hopes to see you there!


This weekend’s party

Skull Church Helena

In 1864 a group of prospectors known as the Four Georgians discovered gold while mining in what is now the capital of Montana. They were at the tail end of an unsuccessful expedition and if they didn’t find gold here they were going to give up and go back home. They hit pay dirt. Gold. News of their success spread and soon others began to flock to the area. The spot was named the “Last Chance Gulch.” The the city of Helena was born.

Evangelism is kind of like mining. You turn over shovel full after shovel full of earth but there is no guarantee as to what you are going to find or if you are going to have any success at all. Both take effort and diligence on your part, but at the end of the day you are dealing with many factors that are outside your control. Only God can make diamonds, precious stones and gold and He is the only one who can save a soul. You can tell people about what Jesus has done for them, but they might not care or respond to His gracious invitation.

To me, the unpredictability of it all is what is what makes it exciting. Stepping out in faith, taking risks and launching out into the deep are all essential parts of following Jesus and being His ambassadors. Where everything is certain and known and tame there is no need to trust God. We came to Helena for Skull Church, like the Four Georgians did, on a hunch. We believed God wanted to do something incredible. Like their fateful trip — we experienced a spiritual bonanza! There were 312 people that responded to the gospel in person and another 18 registered decisions online!

We have been doing these events for years now and have seen the Lord bless our faith and His Word again and again. I still find it is as thrilling as it was the first time to watch the nets come out of the water full of fish (I’m mixing metaphors now I know, sorry). I pray that the Lord would never let me get used to this. Our team is full of legends, our church is wide awake, our God is for us and it is the honor of a lifetime to be a part of any of this.

Before this weekend I had never spent any time in the city of Helena but I thoroughly enjoyed it and can’t wait to return. Family Force 5 and Britt Nicole were an absolute pleasure to partner with. This was the third time we have had Family Force out to Skull Church events but we had never partnered with Britt before and she was solid gold (pun intended.)

With this event Skull Church comes to a close for 2013. It has been an amazing year of events and extraordinarily difficult too. These events have been funded, in part, by donations that were made in Lenya’s honor and so we have shown footage telling her story at every event. Getting into a frame of mind where I can preach after watching the video is hard, but good. I rejoice in the connection to heaven as God continues to use her life to draw people to Himself.

Here is the 2013 Skull Church Helena Lookbook:

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The O2 Experience is heading to Florida!

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I am so thrilled that we will be beginning 2014 with two O2 Experience dates right off the bat in the month of January! Normally we do O2 events closer to summer, but since it’s always summer in Florida I don’t think this will be a problem. These two events will be back to back, first in Ft. Lauderdale and then in Miami. If you or your church are anywhere near these cities we would love to partner with you!

The O2 Experience is a fresh look at life, death, sex and romance. More details here.


Liberty through Jesus for all

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In case you haven’t heard, Harvest America is this weekend. On September 28 and 29 Greg Laurie will be preaching the gospel live from the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. This city was once the nation’s capitol, and I am praying it would be the epicenter of a brand new wave of revival and liberty that rings out across the whole country! Harvest America will be simulcast to more than 1,700 host locations and broadcast online and via live radio coverage nationwide. The potential reach of this event is literally in the millions.

There is no doubt our nation is in need of a spiritual awakening, and I am thankful that God has raised up Pastor Greg and the Harvest team for such a time as this. We live in a world groaning for redemption and full of people searching for hope, looking for meaning. That answer is the gospel of Jesus Christ, and that is exactly what Harvest America is all about. Last year more than 15,000 people made decisions for Christ, and we are believing God for even greater things this weekend.

At Fresh Life we count it an incredible honor to be a part of this event for the second consecutive year. We’ll be streaming Harvest America on our radio stations and hosting events in the Flathead Valley, Billings and Missoula. Greg Laurie has been anointed by the Lord to preach the gospel in an incredible, down to earth way. I have had the honor of serving with him as host at Harvest Crusades for the past seven years and it is a remarkable thing to watch God use him so powerfully.

Visit harvestamerica.com for more details, or to find an event near you and don’t forget to invite and bring people to attend, watch online or listen on the radio.  Through Instagram posts, tweets, status updates and #harvestamerica hashtags you can leverage your influence to spread the word.  Most importantly, lets stand together with Greg as he preaches the gospel by praying for him. (Ephesians 6:19)


The O2 Experience is coming to Portland/Vancouver

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We have added a date in the greater Portland area to our 2013 west coast tour! The O2 Experience is a fresh look at life, death, sex and romance. It’s much more than a purity conference–it’s a call to life in Christ. We have seen thousands impacted all over the country through these events in the past and we can’t wait to see what He will do this summer.

June is historically the number one month of the year that people lose their virginity so that is when we go to battle. If you live in or near one of these cities we would love to partner with you and your church in seeing people saved, and set apart to be used powerfully by God. You can get involved, request promo packs, and get more info at o2experience.com.


Last night’s party

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Skull Church exists to communicate to the world exactly what happened at Golgotha, where 2,000 years ago Jesus died for the sins of the world. At all of our events the priority is to broadcast that message, as clearly as possible. Since Good Friday is the day marking Jesus’ death we have turned our annual Skull Church at the Majestic Valley Arena into our flagship event.

It was honestly a bit of an emotional challenge approaching the first Skull Church since Lenya went to heaven. She loved these events so much and would always rock skull jewelry and shirt on the big day, with her sisters and mom. Her absence was amplified but it also intensified my resolve to get the gospel to those who need to know the Savior she is now with.

Thousands of people descended on the Arena, and even the rain didn’t keep people from standing in a line that went on and on. Traffic backed up for miles and we saw the largest crowd we have had in the history of Skull Church. Most importantly, many people responded to the invitation and made a public profession of faith in Jesus Christ!

We got home from the Majestic and thanked God for what He had done in the lives of those who prayed to receive Christ, both in person and watching online. We thought of the verse where Jesus said, “there is joy in the presence of the angels over one sinner who repents…” and decided to join in on the party. We put Lenya’s favorite song on and had a dance party in our living room.

Here is the 2013 Skull Church Majestic look-book:

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Meeting Billy Graham

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Last week Jennie and I were given the opportunity to meet Billy Graham. We traveled to his mountainside home in North Carolina and were honored to sit down in his kitchen and spend some time with him. I’m not kidding when I say that there is not a single person on earth that I would be more excited to meet and talk to. He has preached the gospel to more people than anyone in human history. Hundreds and hundreds of millions have heard the good news because of him. Amazing.

Yet through all the historic crusades, counseling presidents, heads of state, and being considered, year after year, one of the most influential people alive, he has remained humble and driven by the simple desire to focus all the attention on the man in the glory — Jesus Christ. Even more amazing. He grew up the son of a dairy farmer and is a testimony to what God can do through a life that is fully yielded to Him and to His word.

As a young pastor and evangelist I have been greatly impacted by him. I vividly remember getting to attend one of his crusades for the first time. It was on my birthday my sophomore year of high school and I was thrilled to hear him preach in person. All these years later I still watch his messages regularly. It is part of my Skull Church warmup routine. I have many memories of sitting with Alivia and Lenya on those mornings watching grainy, vintage black and white footage that was shot at some of the historic crusades. His booming voice coming through the ages as fiery and powerful today as it was when it was first recorded.

Billy is 94 years old. He has fought the good fight for many, many decades — and he continues to still. He just finished writing a book on the subject of salvation that will release soon. While we were there he was picking out the cover. His beloved wife Ruth, who is a heroine to Jennie, is in Heaven. It was a joy for us to not only talk about Fresh Life and our desire to follow in his footsteps through preaching the gospel at Skull Church events, but to reflect on the hope of the resurrection, the reality of Heaven and the joys awaiting us that Lenya and Ruth are experiencing now. It was very special and an experience that I will treasure all my days. The opportunity for us to meet him came just before Lenya went to Heaven. We leapt at the chance at the time, and it meant even more to us in light of her sudden departure.

I am so thankful to Wil Graham, Billy’s grandson, who is an evangelist and a man of God and has become a great friend. He hosted us at their training center, The Cove, showed us all around Montreat, N.C. and told us so many amazing stories about “Daddy Bill.” It was a joy for our family to spend time with him, his lovely wife Kendra and their kids.

If you are ever in North Carolina, you for sure need to visit the Billy Graham Library in Charlotte. It tells the story of what God has done through his life and ministry. It is very well done and so inspiring.

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A huge weekend for America

If you haven’t heard the news, Harvest America is just days away. Greg Laurie will be preaching the gospel at Angels Stadium in Anaheim, California and it will be simulcast to over 1,700 locations from sea to shining sea. In addition to these sites it will be going out to hundreds of thousands through webcasts and live radio coverage. This could potentially be the largest evangelistic event to ever occur in the history of the United States of America!

There is nothing this country so desperately needs as spiritual revival and I am so thankful that God gave this vision to Greg and the Harvest team to put this phenomenally massive outreach together. Especially as we move towards a presidential election, everyone is clamoring for hope and change; but the answer to our country’s problems isn’t who is living in the White House, but rather who is coming on a white horse–Air Horse One–I’m talking about Jesus Christ! We desperately need to consider our ways and turn to the Lord. And the only way that will happen is through the bold proclamation of what happened at skull hill–where Jesus died for the sins of the world–and that is exactly what Harvest America is all about.

At fresh life we are absolutely, flat-out honored to be a part of this event; both through streaming it on our two radio stations and by hosting Harvest America events in Billings and in the Flathead Valley. In my opinion Greg Laurie is the freshest and most powerful evangelist on the planet. The way God has gifted him to preach the gospel in a down to earth way is outstanding. I have had the opportunity to travel with him all over the country and serve with him as emcee at his crusades and it is a very special–Holy Spirit–thing to watch God use him in the lives of so many people, there is a serious anointing on his life. We are pinching ourselves that via technology we are able to effectively have Harvest crusades in Montana this summer! Outrageous.

We should all leverage our personal influence towards this event as well, through instagram posts, tweets, status updates and #harvestamerica hashtags this thing should generate some mega traffic and turn heads all over the place. You never know what God can do with even the smallest things we offer to Him in faith.

Get more details at harvestamerica.com, invite and bring people to attend and or watch online, and lets stand together with Greg and the whole Harvest team in prayer. (Ephesians 6:19)


skull church can’t do that

As a rule I generally don’t read letters that come in anonymously. I have found that often times when people communicate without including their name it’s because they are cowards who just want to take a potshot and criticize from the shadows. From the safety of an unsigned letter the venom can freely drip off of the page. The worst part is when you are done reading it, and the barbs have done their worst, you can’t do anything about it. But that was the point all along; damage not dialogue.

But I recently read a note someone wrote me that was clearly left unsigned, not for the purpose of vitriol, but out of shame and embarrassment.

Dear skull church person,
I think your ministry is great and all, but the one think I think you should touch on is what about Christians who have fallen away from God. How to get them to come back. I’m 18 years old, and I have an addiction to pornography and masturbation. I know both are so wrong, but I can’t seem to stop. I know I’m a christian, but my walk with Christ is dead. I need help. Please pray for me.

As I read this note my heart went out to him and a million others just like him that are saved but struggling. It’s clear that he feels that what we are doing isn’t helping him in the battles he is fighting as he tries to walk with God. But here’s the thing: skull church can’t do that. There’s no way it can. Skull church is there to present the gospel to those who have never heard it, with the intention that those who commit their lives to Christ would get plugged in at a local fellowship where they can be baptized, hear the Bible taught consistently, get into a small group to grow as a disciple, and begin serving. If that’s fresh life, great. If it’s another church, also awesome.

Looking to an evangelistic outreach to move forward in your walk with God would be like taking your car back to the dealer anytime it’s out of gas. A dealership is a great place to get a car, but it’s not enough if you want to keep fuel in the tank. You need to go to the gas station every week, sometimes more. When you look at Paul’s evangelistic ministry you see this. People would get saved as he would preach, but then he would point them to bodies of believers to grow in their new walks with God. (1 Corinthians 1:17 For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel, not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of no effect.)

Don’t misunderstand me, I care very deeply about helping those who are struggling with sexual temptation. I have spent the last decade of my life calling this generation to God’s plan for sexual purity and trying to give tools to help them fight for it at O2 Experience events. And at fresh life we have done whole series on this subject, talking about these topics at length (see here and here) But skull church is a one trick pony. It only has one gear. It’s there to amplify the gospel, from the loudest speakers possible, to as many people as possible, until all have heard or Jesus has returned.


Last night’s party

I can’t think of a better way to start out the new year than by seeing people walk into forgiveness and grace through Jesus, and that’s exactly what we saw happen at the first Skull Church event of 2012! The Mayan calendar may be signaling the end of days, but for those touched whose hearts were touched by the gospel last night, this year is the beginning of a brand new life. It was also nice to expose Montana to some hip hop; living sixty miles from Canada we don’t get a whole lot of that.