New Year’s Newsletter 2010
Greetings, Friends. I would like to begin this month’s letter by thanking God for our incredible soldiers and their families. It is because of them that we are allowed this great privilege to freely honor our Lord Jesus Christ as we do. It is because of God, through them, that we are still the greatest nation on planet earth. So to each of you, and I believe I speak for all of us, when I say, “Thank you and may God richly bless you for protecting this great country.”
This month is not only the birth of a new year, 2010 A.D., but my birthday as well. As I was reading over some notes this morning, I came across these wise words from a man I greatly respect. He wrote them on his 75th birthday and they express so much of what I want to say to you. Please read these Scriptures first to prepare a proper canvas for this master piece of work (Proverbs 4:1-19, Job 12:10-13, Proverbs 16:31).
“Birthdays are milestones, significant points in the passing of time, specific yet mute reminders that more sand has passed through the hourglass. They do, however, give us a handle on the measurement of time which, when you boil it down into minutes, really moves along at a pretty good clip. There are 60 of them every hour…1,440 every day…over 10,000 of them each week…about 525,000 per year. As of today I’ve experienced millions and millions of them. Talk about feeling old!
But they pass so quietly, so consistently, they fool you. That’s part of the reason C. S. Lewis said, “The safest road to hell is the gradual one—the gentle slope, soft underfoot, without sudden turnings, without milestones, without signposts…The long, dull, monotonous years of middle-aged prosperity or middle-aged adversity are excellent campaigning weather [for the devil]. We mark our calendars withdeadlines—dates that set limits for the completion of objectives and projects. To ignore those deadlines brings consequences. To live without deadlines is to live an inefficient, unorganized life, drifting with the breeze of impulse on the fickle wave of moods. We set deadlines because they help us accomplish the essentials…they discipline our use of time…they measure the length of our leash on the clothesline of demands.
God, however, brings about birthdays; not as deadlines but lifelines. He builds them into our calendar once every year to enable us to make an annual appraisal, not only of our length of life but our depth. Not simply to tell us we’re growing older but to help us determine if we are also growing deeper. These lifelines are not like that insurance policy you invested in last year. There’s no automatic promise of annual renewal. Obviously, if God has given you another year to live for Him, He has some things in mind. He has some very special plans to pull off through your life. Surely it includes more than existing 1,440 minutes a day!
The psalmist gives us the perfect prayer to pray every year our lifeline rolls around.
“So teach us to number our days, that we may present to You a heart of wisdom” (Psalm 90:12).
Now let me caution you. Don’t expect wisdom to come into your life like great chunks of rock on a conveyor belt. It isn’t like that. It’s not splashy and bold, nor is it dispensed like a prescription across a counter. Wisdom comes privately from God as a by-product of right decisions, godly reactions, and the application of scriptural principles to daily circumstances. Wisdom comes, for example, not from seeking after a ministry, but more from anticipating the fruit of a disciplined life. Not from trying to do great things for God but more from being faithful to the small, obscure tasks few people ever see.”
The “Basic Life Principles Seminar” which is every Friday night at 7pm, teaches these disciplines and principles so clearly. It’s all about demonstrating a Godly character, being conformed into the image of Jesus, and as Paul so clearly understood in Romans 5, the tribulations, adversities, the very storms of life we so often want to escape, are the very trials the Lord allows into our lives to develop deep inward character, the kind that will shine brightly against the darkest storms. By the time you receive this letter we will have completed the 5th seminar in the jails.
I’m happy to say in the jails and at “Steps of Christ Recovery” we are learning together, how to apply in actual life, these very principles and disciplines of God’s Word, seeking after His wisdom in order to make Godly choices with our lives. After all that’s what it’s about, choices. Why is it that some Christians succeed, while others who make a profession of faith miserably fail? Why it is that some seem to run the race of life and cross the finish line with flying colors, while others just collapse in a heap? It is because of choices–choices that we make each and every day. We make our choices, and our choices make us. And life is filled with choices. It comes down to this: If you want to grow spiritually, you will. And if you don’t want to grow spiritually, you won’t. It is not the luck of the draw or something that only happens randomly; it is making the right choice to do the right thing. To run the race of life and cross the finish line with flying colors, It is because of choices–choices that we make each and every day. We make our choices, and our choices make us. And life is filled with choices.
The fruits of this labor have simply been astonishing, lives are being deeply touched and changed forever. Jesus Himself said, “He who I set free will be free indeed” and He gave us His Word to stand on! It has been my greatest joy to see not only my own life so deeply touched and changed this past year, but so many others such as Guy and Kenneth.
Guy Thuro is a man who has been deeply touched by the Lord. I met Guy in jail and what the Lord has done, and is still doing in his life, has simply been a miracle. His story is truly of a prodigal son who lost his way, and a Father who ran to embrace him and bring him home. He will be giving his testimony 7pm, Saturday, January 23rd, at “Steps of Christ Recovery”. You won’t want to miss it!
“Steps of Christ Recovery” meets every Tuesday and Saturday at 7 pm at Gatlin Baptist Church. Come join our growing family as we journey through life’s difficulties together and learn that Jesus is all we ever needed, that He has been with us all the time. We just need our eyes opened sometimes! We have an excellent children’s program and nursery as well. Hope to see you there! I promise you will feel the love of Jesus and leave encouraged, and refreshed with a new or improved purpose for life. Lives are being touched and people are being freed from the oppression of the devil. Come feel the love of Jesus. We care, but more importantly Jesus cares, and that’s where we stay, at the feet of Jesus.
Would you please keep in prayer my passion for a “Steps of Christ Recovery” house? Duncan is in desperate need of such a home. Also Billie Price notified me that the legal work has been completed and they closed on the property for “Our Father’s Lighthouse.” They are now ready for the volunteers to get this Christ-based women’s home underway. This is another dream that Duncan desperately needs.
As I bring this month’s letter to a close, once again I’m lost for words to express how very, very grateful I am to everyone who makes this ministry possible. From all you who provide finances, clothing, computers and service, telephones, repairs on my truck, who have allowed me a shoulder to cry on, who have been there to pull me out of the caves of self-pity and despair, who have encouraged me through the dark days, who had the boldness and love to tell me the truth when you knew it was going to hurt, and especially the many of you who have been on your knees praying for me and loving me when I’m not so lovable—I love every one of you with all of my heart. It is my sincere prayer the Lord not only give back to you good measure, pressed down, running over, but that He also keep the devourer off of you according to His Word.
His servant, web:
dennis hall e-mail:
If you would like to become a partner in this ministry, please fill out the form below, clip it off and mail it to my home church. Please make out support checks in the name of Dennis Hall Ministries, P.O. Box 2117, Duncan, OK. 73534, in order for them to be tax-deductible.
Ministry of Dennis Hall Partnership Form (1/2010)
Name ____________________________________ E-mail ____________________________
Address __________________________________ Phone_____________________________
City, State, Zip _____________________________ Web ______________________________
( ) I will be in earnest prayer for this ministry. ( ) I commit $_______as a one-time offering.
( ) I commit $______ monthly (as the Lord allows). ( ) Please remove me from your mailing list.