Man in the Mirror 30 Year Bible Study Reunion
For 30 years Patrick Morley has been leading the Man in the Mirror Weekly Bible Study and today we honor his commitment to see mens’ lives changed by the power of the gospel. But he could not have done it without the faithful men that came along side of him. Today we say thank you and honor the 85 men who have been our table leaders through the years. Join Patrick Morley, along with Brett Clemmer and David Delk, in commemorating these faithful partners that have made these 30 years possible.
Man in the Mirror Weekly Bible Study
30 Year Bible Study Reunion
Patrick Morley, Brett Clemmer, David Delk
Brett Clemmer: You know Pat has gotten to stand up here for 30 years and say that almost every week. For the last 16 years we’ve recorded it, and I don’t know that any of have ever gotten the chance to say, “Good morning men,” to a room full of men like Pat has. We’re going to do that together this morning, you’re ready? One, two, three. Good morning men. That feels good, doesn’t it? Now you know why Pat does it every week.
Well good morning men, it is great to have you here. Thank you so much for joining us for the 30th year reunion of the Man in the Mirror Bible Study. It’s been 30 years of faithful service; faithful from Pat preparing every week to teach, and faithful from each of you gentlemen who have participated with the Bible study over the years. We have some guys that have been here since the beginning and guys, I know I’ve met guys this morning that this is their first week here. How cool is that to see the array of guys that we have here coming at different points in the Bible study?
If this is your first time here, we do not serve breakfast every week. I know, it’s like 5 first-timers out of the door right now, but we do study God’s word every week and Pat is faithful to prepare diligently every week to bring God’s words to us too. As he says step on our toes while he makes us laugh, so that we can be startled out of our complacency and really see what the Word of God has for us every day.
I’d like to introduce to you one of my mentors, Patrick Morley.
Patrick Morley: Good morning men. If you would please turn in your Bibles to 1 Corinthians chapter 2. One of my pastors this last week in church was quoting atheist Julian Barnes who said, “I don’t believe in God but I miss Him.” It was Saint Augustine who said, “Thou hast made us for thyself and the heart of man is restless until it finds its rest in thee.” That’s what this Bible study is all about.
In 1 Corinthians chapter 2, this is … Every week I repent of any self-sufficiency to either prepare deliver this message. That’s the first thing I do when I start preparing is the last thing I do before I come up here, I do the same thing; I repent of any self-sufficiency to prepare or deliver a message. This is the text that guides my … I have a Bible study preparation worksheet, some of you know that, and this is on the worksheet.
1 Corinthians chapter 2 verses 1-5, “When I came to your brothers, I did not come with eloquence or superior wisdom as I proclaim to you the testimony about God. For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified. I came to you in weakness and fear and with much trembling. My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the spirit’s power so that your faith might not rest on man’s wisdom but on God’s power.”
That has been I believe the reason we are still here after 30 years. I would like this morning to give glory and praise and honor to God Almighty, His Son Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit. That’s why we are here this morning, because of who He is and what He has done in our lives. He is the God who is, and we worship Him. We also give Him thanks that for 30 years the favor of God has rested on this Bible study. As most of you probably know but some of you perhaps don’t know, through the leadership of John Barber we started recording this in 2001, something like that.
We webcast this, and so not only are you here this morning but sorry guys it’s on a 2-week delay because it costs a lot of money to do it live, so but on a 2-week delay there will be 6,000 other men downloading this. Many of them will be in small groups scattered all around the world, all 50 states. It’s been an exciting 30 years, I can’t wait for the 40th years reunion myself.
Why did we start, what do we do and why does this work? Well this started as a place for executives to grow. Executives who were attending these evangelistic dinners that my wife and I were doing. The problem is none of those people ever came to the Bible study, but God gave this its life, its own life. We started as almost all of you know, we started in a bar down the street and we were there for about 6 or 7 or 8 months and then we moved over here to the Civics Center. There are a lot of great stories, I was just reminded this morning we used to have clothespins for name tags. We write your name on a clothespin, you come in, and it was on a vertical pole and you take the clothespin. That was back in the day when people cared what the name of somebody else. I’m just kidding about that.
My message from the beginning has always been the same; it’s to help men stop, examine their lives, be reconciled with Christ and then make needed changes based on God’s, commitment to God’s larger purposes for their lives. That’s always been the same message. Our method has always been the same, it’s 2 Timothy 2:2, we invest in men who will invest in other men. The mission of the Bible study is to help men grow as disciples, to help you grow as disciples and disciple makers starting at home. That’s what we’re about every week consistently and the same.
Well why does this work? I was preparing some remarks here this morning and it just, it struck me over and over again, “Why does it work? Why does it work?” It works because of faithful men. It works because of faithful men, and that’s the 2 Timothy 2:2 idea, “The things you’ve heard from me entrust to faithful men.” We have so many faithful men that have been involved in this Bible study and I just need to say thank you and show appreciation to those men.
If you will indulge me, first of all I would like to say thank you to all of the men who have ever spoken at the Bible study and as you know now we’ve got a team-teaching thing so if you have been a speaker at the Bible study would you just stand up. I know I’ve seen Brett and David and Pete, anybody else here? Then hold all of their applause but stay standing if you will. We’ve had many, most of the pastors, well not most, but a lot of the pastors from around town have spoken here also over the years. The volunteers, the men who make the Bible study click.
We have Jim Angelakos is the administrator for the Bible study, Tom Watson you stand, Michael Lenahan the videographer he’s already standing; Michael don’t you do anything differently though because we need you. Then on the sound board and doing the audiovisual Brian Russell, Scott Russell, faithful men; Dave Hamilton upfront, Steve Hall, Jeff Taylor, Steve Jones ran the second-timer table. Keith Thomas doing photography. Gee! Who did I miss on that? All of these men as volunteers and speakers and administrating to make this thing go so it’s not. Then all of the existing table leaders, if you would please stand up. All of the existing table leaders if you would stand up.
You can see it takes a what? It takes a village? It does, it takes a community of faithful men. You may please sit down. Then in addition to that we have all the men who’ve been MCs. I can think of Carl Hoburg, Lucas McCurdy, Jack Lindle Day and Todd Woodard, and I’m sure there are many others. Oh Brett Clemmer I just thought of him. Then we have the all of the online leaders too now. We don’t know exactly how many of the 6,000 weekly downloads are done in small groups. We don’t frankly we just don’t have the resources to chase all these numbers, but at one point we had about 20%, we did do research once and found out about 20% of the people were doing the online Bible study in small groups.
You leaders online you are faithful men and the changes that take place they’re so dramatic because like Mike Kitner who’s not here today, a former table, he went then and started, as he became started to grow as a disciple, he went down to his church he was Baptist and started a men’s Sunday school class. 155 men went through that class. One of the men that went through that class then started a group in his home on Tuesday nights and 70 men have been through that class. This idea of multiple, investing in men who will invest in other men it’s such an exciting and robust concept. Thank you to all of you.
Then you first-timers here this morning we always welcome our first-timers. For those of you online we do this after you go offline, but if you’re a first-timer would you just raise your hand, you don’t have to stand up, but just raise your hand if you’re here for the first time this morning. Would you join me in welcoming all of our first-timers this morning. We are so glad to have you here; we’re just so glad to have you here.
Why this works is because of faithful men, faithful to the Gospel of Jesus, faithful to the leading of the Holy Spirit, faithful to Jesus Christ. Now I’m not that good, but what we’ve done is we have developed a couple of sheets 2 1-pagers that over the years have helped us stay on track. One of those 1-pagers is called ‘The Grace-based Application-oriented Bible Study Preparation Worksheet’ short form. I’ve been adding words to it for 30 years so you can imagine. This is one of the 2 main reasons, I’ve told you the faithful men part.
The other reason is this is how this worksheet plays out. Number 1, pick a text. It’s a Bible study for crying out loud. Number 2, prepare my heart; this is where I do the repenting. Number 3, study my text; that’s the exegesis for those of you who, but what does the text say and mean? I have developed some very robust questions over the years to help me get into the text. For example, what is the question or situation that called this text into existence? In other words, why is it still, why did this make the cut? That’s pretty interesting to study. Is there something we learn from this text that we would otherwise never know? Oh my gosh! Then what 1 idea if fully understood and truly believe could change everything for you? We call that ‘The Big Idea’ every week.
I start out trying to figure out how do I arrest your attention. What is the compelling need or problem that this text addresses that is screaming for an immediate solution? Then how do I create gravity in your heart to hear? How can I irreversibly plunge you into the text and topic? Now what? So what? I know you care but what can you do about it? The application and many other things. What we’ve done is we stayed focused, focused on the Word of God. Then the second thing as I say if faithful men. By the way for that we have another 1-pager, it’s a job description. It’s got the focusing ideas and the qualifications, the mission, and the major responsibilities.
Then every year every table leader on December 31 is guess what? Out of a job. Every year every table leader basically has to reapply if he wants to be a table leader the following year. Then in front of these 9 major responsibilities is a blank line. Guess what he has to write in that blank line, a number 1-4. Number 4 being very faithful, number 3 mostly faithful, number 2 somewhat faithful, number 1 not faithful. Guess what the word, the operative word is in their self-assessment of how they did the previous year. Faithfulness; faithful men. Then of course if somebody is pretty down 1s and 2s we have a little talk. Usually just found out they had a rough patch at work and they recommit themselves.
The result of this is that there’s an exit strategy for guys whose callings have changed, who are ready to move on so we have no dead wood. I’m telling you we have faithful men here because we have a system. Your system is perfectly designed to produce the results you’re getting, and we have a system for the men who feel passionate about continuing to lead tables to lead tables. We have a room full of faithful men leading a room full of faithful men. That’s the secret of the success of the Bible study humanly speaking. It all comes from God; the favor of God.
Now we want to make a special presentation this morning to all of the 80 now they’re actually 87 men. We have a new table leader who is starting this morning; it’s his first day. We also have table leaders that go back all the way to the very first time 30 years ago. I’m going to ask before we make this presentation just to ask those men who were there at the Villa Nova if they’re please stand: Dave Halbrooke, Rick Hornbeck, and I think you’re the only 2 guys that are still alive. Both of these men are or have been table leaders so you please remain standing.
Then what I’d like to do is to ask all of the men who have ever been a table leader, you have to be present in order to do this. I’m going to ask all of you who have ever been table leader and are present to please come forward and line yourselves up across the front here as we make a special presentation. Dave, Rick, Kent, John, everybody. Now I’d like to also figure out who came the farthest this morning to be here? I know Dave Outlaw came all the way from Tallahassee just to be here with us this morning; former table leader. Has anybody come farther than Tallahassee to be here this morning? I know we have somebody over here from the Tampa Bay Area as well. All right.
In order to show our … Let me tell you what we’re doing here. Seems like every time we’ve had one of these anniversaries somehow it ends up always being about me. It ought to be about Jesus Christ, it ought to be about the Word of God, and it ought to be about faithful men, yeah, it ought to be about me too, don’t forget me, but … Wanted to turn a corner today and really to pay tribute and honor the men who have been faithful to make this Bible study work. It does take a community and this is the community of men, and I have said it many times I’ll say it again this morning, I consider my single greatest achievement in ministry to be involved in helping these men grow as disciples and disciple-markers.
The thing that I always point to is that there are now 87 men that I can point to that God has allowed me to have and impact. We’ve done breakfasts together, all those Monday morning meetings at my house, all of the retreats going to the NASCAR race, the diving trips. All of the different crazy things that we’ve done, you are the men when my eye roll back in my head, you are the faces the last faces that I’m going to see. You are the men that I feel and most proud of to have had the privilege to being involved in your lives. Really men in general but you have to particularize and this is has been the focus. This is where I think the power of the ministry that has grown to impact 12 million men worldwide so far, I think this is the group of men that form the foundation for everything that’s happened.
If you do the slide we’re going to in honor of the, oh I do the slide? In honor of these men Man in the Mirror Bible Study well this is a tribute here, “Thank you for 30 Years of Investing in the Lives of Men.” We’re doing a plaque in bronze … Yeah I will, but this is what the plaque says, “In honor of the Man in the Mirror Bible Study Table Leaders. Thank you for 30 years of investing in the lives of men. ‘86 to 2016 2 Timothy 2:2.” What we are going to do is we have purchased a new building, we’ll be moving into it later in the year. We are going to be putting, if you look back up at the screen guys, we’re going to be putting a huge boulder rock and planting a tree with that plaque on the boulder in honor of your faithfulness.
I wonder if you would join me in giving tribute and honor to these men who’ve been so faithful for all these years.
Thank you men. You may be seated.
Let me tell you what I want. This is what I want. I want 10 more years, I want 10 more years with you guys online. I want more connection with you men who are online especially if you’re a leader. I don’t know how we’re going to do that but I want more connection with you. I want to see the Bible study endowed. Each of these downloads is about $0.30; it doesn’t sound like much. You guys online you’re downloading this, it costs us $0.30 for you to download it. Well that’s okay except when you get up to 300,000 downloads a year all of a sudden you start looking at some real money. It says about $90,000. I want somebody to endow the Bible study. I don’t even know how that works; we’ve never done anything like that before. If you join me in praying about that.
Then I started this Bible study in 1986 so I would have been 37 years of age, 37. I’d like to see us figure out how to reach down into the generation of guys in their 30s and let’s raise up another generation of disciple-makers. We are already but we could be doing better. Those are the 4 things I want: 10 more years, more connection with especially the online guys, figuring out how to endow $90,000 of cost, and then getting more of the guys in their 30s involved. Thank you for 30 wonderful years, I’m so grateful to you, and now I wonder if I can turn this over to Brett.
Brett can you lead this lead this next session? Okay great, thank you so much.
Brett Clemmer: It would be my pleasure. Well as you looked up here and you saw all these men standing across the front, I can imagine that many of you may have looked up and seen someone that had an impact on your life. At Man in the Mirror one of the things that we like to say is we measure success and change lives. What we want to do is we want to open the floor up, and I’ve heard many stories through the years of things that have happened. I remember sitting at a table over here on your right and I had a group of guys that I had been in a small group with. I got tired of preparing a lesson for them every week, so I said, “Well why don’t we just go to the Man in the Mirror Bible study and Pat will prepare a lesson for us every week?” It seemed like a good deal.
There was a skeptic in the group and every week we had met this skeptic in the group had just asked me these little questions, these little picky questions about Christianity, “Well what about this and what about that?” I was kind of at my wit’s end with him actually. We were sitting over here in the group and he started to share a story about a guy that he was doing business with and the guy said, “Are you a believer?” The guy said, “Well what do you mean?” He said, “Well are you a Christian?” He said, “Well I’m not really sure what that means, but if it means do I believe that there is a God and that He sent His son to die for me and I needed Him to die for me to pay for my sins, then yeah I guess I’m a Christian.”
The other 6 guys around the table who were waiting for another picky little question, leaning way back with their arms folded all of a sudden were up with their elbows on the table going, “What!” He just went right on with his conversation like he hadn’t said anything important. I talked to him about it afterwards and I said, “What are you talking about?” He said, “You know …” I realized I had challenged him I had said, “You have 80% of the answers you need, and as a businessman you make decisions all the time with 51% of the information you need so I’ll keep answering your questions but someday you’ve just got to get off the fence.”
He said he was sitting in here and listening to the teaching and sitting at these tables and having these discussions and seeing guys be patient and invest in his life. That helped him come to the point where he realized that yeah he really did believe in Jesus and he really did trust Him. That happened right here in this room, so I’m wondering we’re wondering what stories do you have? We’re going to take a couple of mics, we’ve got a couple of mics here. I’m going to walk over to you and then we’ll just pass the mics around. If you could share your name when you share your story.
Samuel Haynes: Good morning men. My name is Samuel Haynes. 17 years ago. Pat, you gave me an opportunity to work at Man in the Mirror, and then to be a Bible talk leader. I look back 17 years and I realize that I have become an intercessor for men, and I wonder where did that come from. Years ago I was at a monastery in Atlanta, Georgia and I purchased a, it was handcrafted by one of the monks. It is a man praying. Can you join me for a moment so I can present it to you?
I’ve had this for 10 years and I looked at it. Which way? Okay okay. I’ve had this for 10 years and I purchased this, no one else on the planet has one of these. I’m giving this to you because of what you have meant to me as someone who prays for men. Here is a man, here could you hold that for second? Here is a man that is just came home, the story goes, and just crashed on the kitchen chair dropped his Bible and just started praying. The scripture on here, everyone knows about Jeremiah, most people know about Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans that you have for me,” declares the Lord, “Plans to prosper me and not to harm me, plans to give me a hope and a future.”
Few know about verse 13, and can you read that?
Patrick Morley: I will, hold the mic up. “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with you all your heart,” Jeremiah 29:13.
Samuel Haynes: I want to thank you for teaching me here in all of these men how to pray for each other, so thank you so much for that. One last thing, one thing gentlemen we’re talking about passing the torch so, Isaiah, this is my son Isaiah, can you stand for a moment? Isaiah, there’s not another father who is more proud of his son than I am of you.
I want to charge you, the men that is in this room are Godly men. You need to build relationships with these men. I charge you because God has a hand on your life. You have graduated from college, you have married, you have given me 2 sons that carry my name to the next generation with the third one in November; it’s going to be a wonderful Thanksgiving. I am honored to be your father, but I am more pleased that you are here to be able to move to the next levels of God’s work through your life. These are your brothers, mentors. These are relationships that you will have even after I have closed my eyes to this world; they will be here. I bless you and charge you to make these relationships. I love you.
David Outlaw: Good morning men.
Brett Clemmer: Turn just this way so the camera can see you. Okay.
David Outlaw: My name is David Outlaw. I started coming to the TGIF morning Bible study in 1988. I’ve got 2 quick stories; Pat knows both of them. The first I’d like to share is a table leader. We had a nice young man, a black man from the intercity up north who was sitting at my table and every Friday morning he would come and say, “I’ve witnessed to the east people, I converted so many a week.” Our table got a little nervous because they were I guess not witnessing like this young man was.
About the sixth month into this I said, “Bernard, that’s great, you’ve got a lot of numbers under your belt,” but I asked him I said, “How many have you followed up on and how many have you discipled?” A blank look came over his face and goes, “What?” I said, “It’s great to bring a man to Christ and that’s our challenge is to disciple and witness, but it’s also our challenge to make them men of God.” He changed his procedures and he started discipling men, I said, “If we can disciple one man a year, we’ve done a very good job in God’s eyes I think.” He’s no longer with us but before he passed on he came to me over a breakfast one morning he says, “You’re the father I’ve never had.” Well that was very encouraging to me.
The second point is talking about my father. I didn’t have a close relationship with him; we were, we had some issues. We lived in the same town here in Orlando where I grew up. We saw each other twice a year for the holiday. At the time I was driving down south every week so I had a few hours in the car to pray and think. One morning about 6:00, Pat was putting, leading the Friday morning Bible study, I mean the Annual Prayer Breakfast meeting. God spoke to me and He said, “Call your dad.” “That’s too early, he’s not up.” I put it on the shelf, which I usually do but He knocks it off again then I start to listen. About 7:00 in the morning I’m still on my way down, “Call your dad.” “No, he’s not up.” I put it back on the shelf.
I believe this is the first time and the only time I heard God’s audible voice He says, “Are you going to call your dad?” I called him, I asked him to the Annual Prayer Breakfast. He accepted and I said, “Oh my gosh! What am I going to do now?” We got in the car where I picked him up and the conversation went like this, “Dad, I know we’ve had some problems; that’s the past. I ask for your forgiveness.” He forgave me, I forgave him. I explained to him what forgiveness, what I understood forgiveness to be. God writes all those issues on a chalkboard, wipes them off with his eraser. If they’re tall turn into a thousand particles of dust. You can’t bring them up again if you truly forgive someone.
I was to tell you that to say this, my dad sat at my table the next week and I got to be his table leader until the day he passed. Pat I want to thank you.
Brett Clemmer: Thank you for both of those, and I’m sure we could stay here for hours and listen to amazing stories. I want to share with you really quickly a story this morning that has come in my mind as represent exactly what Man in the Mirror is looking to do going forward, and that’s the idea of Life-on-Life discipleship. Last night I went to a visiting hours at a funeral home, and I had spent a couple of hours in Starbucks yesterday afternoon preparing some thoughts for this morning. Then I went to this visitation. On my way home from the visiting hours I realized I had to throw my notes out and start over again because as I was standing in the back of this funeral home parlor in this little sanctuary.
I was in the wake for a young woman, young 53-year-old woman, young to me now, who had died unexpectedly a week ago today. Her son is on the rock climbing team, some of you know I coach the rock climbing team and he’s 17 years old and he unexpectedly lost his mom just suddenly last Friday. He’s got a sister who’s 18 and a sister who’s 7, and a dad who I rock-climb with a lot. As I saw standing in the back, I was struck that people were telling stories and that was really great but what I was struck by was this man sitting in the front row of this little chapel in a funeral home looking utterly lost and heartbroken.
It made me think of another story of the story of Jesus and Lazarus in John 11, and you don’t need to turn there I’ll just take you through it really quick. John tells us the story of Mary and Martha and Lazarus. These were Jesus’ friends, they were His close friends. What I like about the story is I really have looked at it is that it really illustrates the idea of what it means to be engaged in Life-on-Life Discipleship. Now you remember Mary and Martha in the very first 2 verses John gives us the story, “A certain man was ill, Lazarus of Bethany, the village of Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha.” It was Mary who anointed the Lord with ointment and wiped her feet with her hair whose brother Lazarus was ill.
Then in verse 5 it says, “Now Jesus loved Martha and her sister and Lazarus.” Jesus loved these people, they were His friends. Now you may think, “Well what does friendship have to do with discipleship?” Well friendship has everything to do with discipleship. A disciple is a student and a follower and they called him ‘Teacher’. John 11:28 Martha tells Mary, “The teacher is here,” and so they looked at Jesus as their discipler. They were disciples and they trusted Him. He stayed with them when He would visit Judea, it was at Mary and Martha’s house that He was staying the last week of His life walking into Jerusalem a couple of miles every day. They even helped finance His ministry.
How does this story of Mary and Martha and Lazarus and Jesus, how does this tell us about Life-on-Life Discipleship? Well Jesus hears that Lazarus is sick and so after waiting a couple of days He looks to His disciples and He says, “Let’s go to Judea,” and his disciples go, “Hey wait, hang on a second. I don’t know if you remember Jesus but the last time we were in Judea, they tried to kill you.” Jesus said, “Yeah, but we’re going to go anyway.”
Thomas has this great quote he says, “Well guys we might as well all go and die together.” That’s what Thomas say to Him. They go to Judea so what does this show us about Life-on-Life Discipleship? Life-on-Life Discipleship takes risks. If you don’t have anyone in your life that you’re willing to be in danger for, that you’re willing to be uncomfortable for outside of your family, you’re not engaged on Life-on-Life Discipleship because Life-on-Life Discipleship takes risk.
Jesus goes to Judea, arrives in Bethany and Lazarus is dead. He had been dead 4 days and so Jesus says, “Hey let’s open the tomb,” and Mary doesn’t want to open the tomb. When He walks up to them, Mary actually chastises Him. She says, “If you had been here he wouldn’t have died.” Mary is sobbing and it says, “Jesus looked at the other Jews that were around her and they were all sobbing and crying and grief-stricken.” Then we has this famous verse, John 11:35 all together, “Jesus wept.” Now why is that? It’s not a trivia question, why would Jesus weep? He knew Lazarus was coming back from the dead.
Jesus was weeping for Mary not for Lazarus. He was so emotionally connected to these friends of His to Mary and Martha and Lazarus that when they were sad He was sad, when they were grief-stricken He was grief-stricken. They weren’t sitting alone in the front pew of a chapel in a funeral home, Jesus was right there with them crying right alongside of them. If you don’t have somebody in your life that when they’re grief-stricken you’re grief-stricken, that when they’re joyful you’re joyful, that when they’re frightened you’re frightened standing there right beside them, you’re not engaged on Life-on-Life Discipleship.
Discipleship requires us, especially as men to be emotionally engaged with other men that we’re on this journey with. If you’re not emotionally engaged you’re not engaged in Life-on-Life Discipleship. Well Jesus says, “Open the tomb,” she says, “It’s been 4 days Jesus, he’s going to be ripe,” and He says, “Just open the tomb.” They roll the tomb away and He says to her in verse 40, “Did I not tell you that if you believed you would see the glory of God? Then Jesus prays this prayer He says, “Father I thank you that you have heard me, I know that you always hear me, but I said this I prayed in front of these people on account of them standing around that they may believe that you have sent me.”
Are you helping another person see God’s glory? Are you sharing your stories of answered prayer, insights from scripture, the work of the Spirit of God in your life? Are you helping your brothers believe? If you’re not helping your brothers believe, you’re not engaged in Life-on-Life Discipleship. Life-on-Life Discipleship is not an academic pursuit, it’s relational, it’s personal, it’s dangerous, it’s painful, it’s exuberant, it helps other people believe. Here’s the good news, that’s what we have here. In this Bible study, that’s what we have here.
We have an opportunity to engage in Life-on-Life Discipleship either if you’re in this room every week or if you’re watching this online, the purpose of this Bible study is not just so that you can come hear good teaching, although that’s great. It’s so that you can be engaged in the life of another man. That you can be engaged in Life-on-Life Discipleship, that together we can lock arms and pursue Christ. That we can help each other believe.
That’s my challenge to you this morning, are you really engaged in Life-on-Life Discipleship? I would like to challenge you to connect with other men that you grow to love so much that you will take big risks for them. That you will connect with them on an emotional level, and that you will help them see the glory of God so that they will believe that Jesus is the one who God sent to save the world.
I’m going to ask David Delk if you would come up. As some of you know we’re in a time of transition at Man in the Mirror and we’re not going to have David with us every day much longer, but we are going to continue to have him involved in the ministry. David has some thoughts he wanted to share with us
David Delk: Thanks Brett, and thank you men. Pat could you make your way up here for me? Gordie Howe, 1,700 hockey games. Did you know that? 1,700? Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, 1,500 basketball games. Pat Morley, almost 1,500 Friday morning Bible studies. Now you may say, come here, you may say that, “Friday morning Bible study is not a hockey professional hockey game, it’s not a NBA basketball game.” No, it’s way more important, way more important. The scripture say that the one who teaches faithfully is worthy of double honor. There’s a risk in taking on the responsibility of teaching the Word of God. The Word of God is Holy, it’s powerful, and the Bible talks about it in very very serious terms.
We don’t really think of it that way much anymore because we become so casual with it, but Pat is not casual with it. Pat believes what the Bible says about itself, that it is powerful, and that it changes things. That’s why he’s faithful to teach the Word of God. One of the things that Pat has always done is he has always helped us by creating a single point that he always calls what? The Big Idea. What we have done, come over here I want to show you something here, we have created for you … If you don’t mind step on that side because I’m going to … Yeah. We have taken 30 of your big ideas and we have created for you a beautiful graphically laid-out design with all 30 of those big ideas.
We have a picture here on the, somebody’s trying to get to that. We have a picture for you guys, but hold that up this way Pat and let everybody see that.
Yeah, isn’t that beautiful? As a memory of these, and also you’ll find Pat that, hopefully these are some of the ones that have been the ones that I’ve heard you say a lot and are very meaningful to me. What we’ve done for each one of you that’s here is we have created a replica of this slightly smaller, printed on poster paper and so each one of you can take one or more of those and we’ll have some guys bringing those out to you as well, so. I appreciate you.
Patrick Morley: We’re going to pray and close this out, but I want to say just tell you that it’s going to be hard to say goodbye to David. He’s a much loved friend and brother. He’s going to be joining our Board of Directors and continue in our teaching faculty so we’ll do that. We’ll be here for most of the rest of the year, so no longer President but also equally in love with and overjoyed to tell you that Brett Clemmer is now the new President of Man in the Mirror. Actually we’ve had 2 leadership transitions now in Man in the Mirror.
If you have been here for 29 or more years would you stand? That would be the 2 of you at least. 28 or more years would you stand? 27 or more years would you stand?
Brett Clemmer: There’s a lot of guys doing math right now; you’ve to slow down.
Patrick Morley: 26 or more years stand. If you get it approximately right that’s okay. Yeah, and 25 or more years would you stand? Look at all these guys. How about for 20-25 years if you’ve been here for that long would you stand? Look at that. For 15-20 years would you please stand? Awesome. For 10 or more years would you please stand?
Brett Clemmer: Wow!
Patrick Morley: For 5 or more years, would you please stand? Then for 4 or more years would you please stand. 3 or more years. 2 or more years. 1 or more year, and within the last year.
Brett Clemmer: That’s everybody.
Patrick Morley: This is your first time. Isn’t this awesome? This is so wonderful. While you’re standing I want to remember the names of 10 of our table leaders who have gone to be with Jesus. In silence in memoriam: Scott Alexander, George Ashley, Dunn Bonesteel, Ed Browning, Bernard Fleeks, Jim Knight, Ken Moar, John Ploehn, Jim Seibert, Jim Walton, and last weekend James Raffenaud.
Our dearest Father Lord we praise you, we worship you, we honor you, we give you glory. We worship you in the beauty of your Holiness, in the majesty of your creation, in the generosity of your salvation, in the excellencies of your love, and the mystery of your providence. You have been good to us, you have allowed us to suffer hard things, but you have been good to us. Out of the abundance of your grace we have all received one blessing after another. Lord give us the perspective that understands how much you have given to each of us, that we might be inspired by that to impart your Gospel to others.
Lord, as we understand how precious is the Gospel of Jesus, and how much you have given to each of us, our breath, our loves are desires of our hearts, the joy vocation of family of relationships. Even the joy of suffering for the sake of Jesus Christ. Lord for all of these things we give thanks and they inspire us to share your Gospel with others. Lord, we thank you for this wonderful opportunity this morning to celebrate 30 years of your favor on faithful men who have in turn invested in faithful men. We make this prayer in your most loving name, and everybody said … Amen!