Tuesday, March 22, 2011


Spring is just around the corner (at least in Florida). The buds are blooming, birds are singing and so is Brotherhood. We had a wonderful, uniquely different outreach concert this month. The West Volusia Music Club (WVMC) is a group of former/current musicians, entertainers, etc. that is just north of Orlando. Besides central Florida, members come from Titusville, New Symrna Beach, Deltona, Cocoa Beach and the Midwest corridor. The club hosts concerts each month for its’ members and guests (open to the public). Unique because it’s not the typical “audience” you would see at churches. And, Brotherhood was the first vocal group that WVMC has invited and a first for gospel music, as well!!

Last summer, their president saw Brotherhood and, after attending few concerts, decided to booked us. They wanted lots of music and little talk so… much prayer was placed on this event so that the gospel message was still presented. Being an eclectic group, Brotherhood presented various styles cooked “our way”. A touch of patriotism, a pinch of a classic love ballad, a dash of gospel ‘50’s style and a cupful of good ol’ gospel music!! It was tastefully seasoned in country, light contemporary, southern, Gaither and hymnal gospel sounds.

Praise God, we did our part and it was well received despite our speakers not working. As usual, our sound man readied the equipment for packing. When all was opened and set up underway, we discovered that the speaker power connections were missing! Well, without them you don’t have sound. So, via cell phone instructions, we were able to utilize the hall’s speakers with our mixer and made adjustments “on the fly”. We just knew that what Satan meant to discourage and disrupt, God turned into a blessing! And, despite these challenges, everyone thoroughly enjoyed the concert and can’t wait for Brotherhood to return. A few other church ministry opportunities may result from this event, and we met some wonderful, dear folks. Some were very unassuming.

One gentleman in his late 70’s visited our table before the concert and I had the chance to speak with him a bit. I discovered he was a musician, songwriter, producer, booking agent and former owner of radio stations. He’s also a member of the Rockabilly Hall of Fame. Piquing my interest, I went online to learn more about him. After an accident left him with one arm, he regained confidence to continue playing and singing. In fact, he has a specially built organ allowing him to play with one hand and use his 2 feet to play other instruments at the same time! I listened to his CD and it was wonderful – he truly is a one-armed one man band! I was encouraged and thankful to God that He allows us to use whatever we have to continue a passion. Keep on pressing on and don’t give up, because Jesus Christ did not give up on us! We should be like cheese and fine wine… getting better with age.

THOUGHT: Do you ever hesitate to step out, in faith, to do something for God? It’s like learning to swim. We don’t readily comprehend that when we relax, our bodies will naturally float! We struggle moving our arms and legs and, many times, going nowhere while getting very tired. But when we learn to relax in the process, it all works out – and we swim! God wants us to relax and trust Him for ALL things, big or small. We need to depend on Him for He knows best. The more we struggle to do it ourselves, the harder it becomes. I’ve learned that it’s much easier to surrender to the Father. Why not give it a try, too!

Until next time… be blessed and be a blessing to someone today.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011


Love is in the air as Valentine’s Day arrives with much anticipation. Brotherhood is gearing up for that time to proclaim the love of Jesus to everyone. In early February, we held a concert at the “Wild Game and Gospel” men’s praise breakfast. Besides good gospel music, the men were treated to a wonderful breakfast buffet with samplings of deer meat and wild boar sausage. Brotherhood was able to taste some of these treats and test new material on these dear brothers, as well.

We introduced “Jesus, You’re So Wonderful” (a ‘50’s style song), “Get Up!” (original), “Praying Man” (the story of Daniel), the massively popular radio hit “Ephesians One” and “Greater Is He” written by the Crabb family. It was quite an energetic and electric morning of worship and praise; loud like most men like it, too! That morning concert became a worship service complete with altar call as dozens came forward for salvation and a recommitment to Christ.

Brotherhood also shared a few selections at a Men’s Encounter weekend during communion and celebration time. There were close to 200 men in attendance and, by special request, we had to add “Roll Away”. It seems the younger set has really gravitated to that song. It was so much fun singing unto God with an altar area filled with men celebrating God goodness!! In this techie age we live, I noticed some camera phones at work taking pictures and videotaping themselves and Brotherhood – the “live experience”.

We then had a special Valentines dinner event for the +50 generation. The couples truly enjoyed hearing love ballads of yesteryear like “Sincerely” and “Let It Be Me” which led to Christian love songs (well, lots of gospel music are just love songs to Jesus!). Brotherhood shared a few new ones plus “Mansion Over The Hilltop” and “His Name Is Wonderful”. Encores were requested but we were limited on time. Suffice to say, they had a blast!!!

One of my recent daily devotionals was called “defragmentation”. In technology, computers get overloaded and run inefficiently. Over time, it accumulates/stores excessive data that causes computer slowdown. It requires a defragmentation process that removes all unwanted, unnecessary items and results in a faster working computer. That can happen to Christians when we bear so much earthly weight from family, work, etc. that we become sluggish and slow. And it affects our relationship with God, as we tend pray less and read the Word less. We need to undergo defragmentation by asking Him to clear our minds, refresh our spirit and take our load. He will answer and we will be much better off! How big is God? Big enough to create the universe yet small enough to care about “little old you”! Be blessed…

P.S. I want to welcome some “old friends” to News & Views. They are dear church friends who I’ve known since Sunday School class – maybe since cradle time! We’ve had great times and wonderful memories. I truly feel they are just like family – maybe even closer.

Hope to see you all soon.