Fifth Ward Church of Christ Resource Center
The FWCOC Resource Center is a way for members to use their gifts and talents to serve God and mankind. All resources and activities listed on the site are provided FREE of charge to residents of the greater Houston area. If you are wondering how we can offer these services free, the answer lies at the heart of what we understand as God’s directive for our lives. "As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God" (1 Peter 4:10). The FWCOC Ministry In-Brief is our way of providing a profile of Ministries at Work.
The FWCOC Ministry In-Brief - Men’s Ministry: Recover—What, How, and When, Part II
Have you ever wondered what happens to water in the aftermath of a rainstorm? Water goes through several phases that involve physical changes, and the most noticeable part of this water cycle is rain. In the Houston area, most of us are familiar with bayous as a part of the channel system across the city. When it rains, activity in the bayous becomes a focus, as flowing water seeks to make its way to the ocean—in the case of Texas, this is the Gulf of Mexico. However, if water flows are blocked, various consequences begin to emerge.
"All of this is great, and we know about water cycles, but what does water in a channel system have to do with recovery and my journey?” As you begin to think strategically, the answer becomes clear: "Everything."
Should we think of ourselves as water channel systems that God uses to relay information to others? Or do we block God’s plan for ordering our steps once it reaches us? Consider how the flow of water relates to God’s way of connecting with us during our journey. We can choose to be a channel or conduit, letting the blessings pass through (or over) us, and “grab,” “pick up,” or “snatch” the instructions intended for us as those blessings flow by. Or we can choose to block the blessings intended for someone else by getting in the way and trying to intervene. This could cause a major buildup, flooding the mind with unwanted consequences caused by getting in the way and not understanding the strategy in God’s plan. If God cannot strategically send a blessing through you, how can you expect Him to send a blessing to you? Strategic thinking provides a way for us to be drenched in blessings versus getting in the way and being drowned in blockages.
In Part II of the Men’s Ministry series, we highlight the idea of "A Strategic Recovery."
A Strategic Recovery: Uncovering pathways to an all-encompassing recovery
Have you ever considered a recovery to be strategic? What exactly does strategic mean? According to Merriam-Webster, a strategy is "a careful plan or method; the art of devising or employing plans” and strategic is defined as "of, relating to, or marked by strategy; necessary to or important in the initiation, conduct, or completion of a strategic plan.”
A strategic recovery should be viewed as an ongoing wellness plan that you implement to stay aligned with God’s word. If things go south—or north—with a normal day’s activities, interactions with people, relationships, or just being you, you should always strive to stay aligned with your strategic recovery plan as a way to maintain an all-encompassing recovery. You don’t always need to have a problem in order to review recovery efforts. Consider having strategic recovery plan "drills"; doing so provides a pathway that entails a self-assessment linked to a reconnaissance across any experience.
Here’s a practical view, as offered by a session participant, which provides additional insights that lead to strategic thinking.
"The theme of this year’s retreat was "No surrender; No retreat." We were reminded that with the Lord on our side, the devil cannot have victory over us and to remember that our war was not against flesh and blood, but against spiritual wickedness in high places. We were given many examples from the Old Testament about the power of our undefeated God. A few examples given included Gideon’s defeat of the Midianites with only 300 men; Elisha being rescued by the chariots of fire; Moses and the Israelites fleeing from Pharaoh and escaping by God dividing the Red Sea; and the falling of the walls of Jericho after the three circles around the walled city. Each of these examples is proof of the power of God working through faithful men.
Each speaker encouraged us with God’s word. We were reminded of scriptures for the type of spirit that God has given to us. In 2 Timothy 1:7 and Romans 8:37-38, God has given us the spirit of power, love, and a sound mind and that nothing can separate us from the love of God through Jesus. It was discussed from the standpoint of fully tapping into this “power” to stay drenched and saturated in the word. We were encouraged that to be so saturated takes intention and planning.
We were reminded that struggling is a part of life for everyone. With God’s love and power, we can overcome the devil and not surrender or retreat. We must always seek victory over the craftiness of the devil and be able to see our victory and trust that God will carry us through.
Lastly, we were challenged to live our lives making the decision to do the best things for the objects of our love, regardless of their response to us, regardless of whether they deserve our love or that love is even reciprocated.
I plan to meet this challenge and believe that if I do, I will be a better husband, brother, father, sharer of the word, and friend.
Based on my experience, I encourage all brothers to join us for fellowship and study at the next Men’s Retreat (Conference, Summit). I appreciate the Leadership and their understanding of the potential benefits to the men of our congregation, young and old. My bus ride had great brotherhood interaction, the hotel was spectacular, the food was very tasty, and the speakers this year were four amazing brothers from four different states who shared God’s word with us. My entire experience was very enriching."
A strategic recovery plan provides a quick reference guide to reach a sound mind as life happens around you, but you continue to fellowship and stay aligned with God.
In Part III, we will review the results of a sound mind leading to notable achievements.
2 Timothy 1:7 "7 For God has not given us a spirit of timidity, but of power and love and discipline." (Source: Bible – New American Standard (NASB))
Ministry: Men’s Ministry.
Coordinator(s) and/or Volunteer(s): William Hamilton.
Ministry In-Brief Administrator and Volunteer(s): Karl Spencer.
Location: Fifth Ward Church of Christ Resource Center (including Trip to Dallas).
Archived Articles: In-Brief Archive (PDF Format)