Grace For Life Introduction
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Today we're going to do something special. If you are a sci-fi fan, this would be called a noncanonical episode. It is not part of the official canon. It stands out from the official episodes.
So listen really quickly I just want to let you know that you can access more podcast audio, videos, transcripts of the stuff that we talk about on any of our episodes all over at graceforlife.tv. You can check it out over there. And like I just said we do everything on YouTube podcast and transcript so you can access this material multiple ways you can watch, you can listen, you can read. Season 3 of grace for life. Those of you that have been following me for a while been following Grace for life... You've been wondering when Season 3 was going to drop. Good news. It is about to hit January 1st, 2018 and that's going to set a precedent where every Monday we'll be dropping those official, scripted, polished episodes and we're picking up in Season 3 right where we left off in Season 2, and that is going into the second half of Romans, and so we're picking up with Romans Chapter 8. There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. I mean I'm telling you that just starts off super strong super powerful and we're going to be tying that in with Chapter 7. So it's going to be no gap regarding how that context comes together... it's going to be fantastic.
So why am I doing this podcast today? Well, we are considering a daily format (and by considering I mean I'm about 99 percent there. I kind of know how the content is going to come about. I don't want to tell you too much because I don't want to get your hopes up and then change the game at the last minute), but kind of know how that's going to look. Considering a daily format but at the end of the day I've got to test the equipment side of things because I was talking to my friend Tony Sutherland last night through text messages and we were talking about the podcasting deal you'll get find Tony Sutherland and put lots of pressure on him to do a podcast. And so we were talking about it. And basically what it comes down to with podcasting and the daily deal especially if it's Daily is how do you create the material in a way that's efficient. So basically we're just testing out some efficiency stuff here.
By that you get content because I'm not just going to stand here and talk for 20 or 30 minutes or however long this ends up being and not release the content. So I've got notes I've got stuff to share with you it's going to be a great episode. And the only thing we asked for me you as a matter of fact what we've done is we've disabled those of you who have been following me for a while we have disabled your ability to give money to this ministry. That's right. You can't even give money anymore.
Least not for now. If you listen to this and 2025, you might be able to do that at that point but today you can not it's turned off. We won't take your money. We'll throw it back at you in your face or send you an edible arrangement or something with it. So it's coming back to you one way or the other. But what you can do if you appreciate this content if you appreciate what we're doing and if you find value in it share it with people share it with your friends posted on your Facebook your Twitter or your Instagram. Add it to a playlist on youtube. Make it public. Pastors tell your congregation about it. Get them turned on to grace for life. That would be the best way you can show your appreciation and your. Support. So today what I want to do is I want to talk just for a couple of minutes and buy a cup. Usually when I say a couple of minutes I mean like an hour and a half. And so we're going to see how that that turns out. There's no time limit because we're in test mode, so we're going to see what happens. But they want to talk to you for a few minutes about kind of how we got to this point of where we're at now which is going to include you know how graceful life kind of came to fruition. Why I've been on a hiatus why it's coming back now. But I've got to take you way back. To get you there.
I'll give you my full testimony of how I came to the Lord as a first generation convert how my wife came to the Lord as a first generation convert how we were not raised in church how church was not a part of our usual life and our upbringing how Jesus was not a part of our usual life in our households without taking it all the way back to that how we were miraculously saved by the grace of God outside of our own efforts how Jesus showed up to us, and we didn't show up to him I mean just a phenomenal story without going all the way back there.
I want to talk to you about all I want to start you at the point where I entered the full-time ministry, and I'm going to kind of blaze through several years of that. But I want to take you there, and then I'll bring it to the present day. So for almost 40 or almost 14 years ago getting close to 14 years ago, I entered the full-time ministry. This is before I met Asheligh this was when I was single, and this is this was when Asheligh was dreaming about me.
In her future. She's looking at me right now I'm in front of her she's giving me the love that she was dreaming about.
Fourteen years ago I started in the full-time ministry right out of high school. I had initially wanted to go to college and when I was in the 10th grade the same. The day I think it was the same day it was at least the same week and it was the same event for sure that I received the baptism of the Holy Spirit. I felt like I had a word before that happened from the Holy Spirit to not go to college. Some people probably are really. Struggling with that but I've really felt like that was a word that I had from the Lord than to receive the baptism of the Holy Spirit. And so it kind of all just was a big confirmation, and so right out of high school, I went immediately into the full-time ministry within a year of that I was a pastor and so. I've I've been doing this for a while, and after several years of ministry that was back in 2004 I graduated high school and was there over that period of being in full-time ministry primarily as a music pastor.
You know I had the opportunity to serve in several large churches. I had the opportunity to serve in several growing churches. Three of those churches were in the top 100 fastest growing churches in outreach magazine years that I was there so three years of the churches I've been in it we've been in that magazine and that's great. Several of the churches within the first year of my tenure have gone from five hundred two of them I think have gone from 500 to 1000, or more so we've seen that happen some fast-growing ministry, so we had that experience some stuff happened. It's great.
It's fantastic but you know. Growing churches being a part of successful churches my salary increase over the course of my career none of that really compares to something that happened to me. I think it was 2011 that's the date I have written down on these notes but I'm a little shaky on if that was when it was 2010 2011 nothing compares to what happened then. And that is when I started seriously. For real. The real deal no joke. Reading the Bible, it's amazing that something as simple as reading the Bible could be as transformative in my life as it was and has been and is. Something that simple. Not being in the growing churches not being in the big church not having the blow out services which all that was happening before and after this. Transition in my world occurred but just simply reading the Bible for myself letting it speak to me through the power of the Holy Spirit. Has been the most transformative thing I think that has happened in all of my ministries. And so back in 2011 I really started doing that as a matter of fact at this point. I can trace the seasons of my life back to the bible I was reading at that point have a bunch of sitting on my desk here. I have a thin line I guess is a thin line at least then reference edition New American Standard Bible from the Lockman foundation that this is the first Bible I ever read all the way through. No stopping is back when I only use the yellow highlighter apparently I'm looking at right now.
This is a this is the first Bible and then this is when the grace message really started to evolve for me. But. I have another bible. It was an ESV. I go back and forth between the New American Standard in the in the English Standard Version I like the English Standard Version but I really like the NTSB I just don't think it's a good Bible for everyone and I have this cheap. I think I got it for 15 dollar English Standard Version Finland Bible that I read. This is the one where Grace really really. Started to open up for me and I really started to see it. I read the New Testament several times in that Bible read some of the Old Testament but I hit the New Testament multiple times and that's just reading the Bible. What happened was I started to see. Things in the scripture. That was written in plain text. I mean right there in black and white sometimes red. Depending on the kind of bible you have but right there in black and white. That was there. Obviously for thousands of years that somehow I had read or heard preached or skimmed over and they never.
Spoke to me it never meant anything it never.
It was never potent in my life. It never made an impact for some reason but it was stuff that was written and it was the transformative power of the gospel without those passages of scripture. The Bible was just a morality handbook which up until this point I thought it was. People always talk about the Bible being instructions for life and.
It's not instructions for life. It's the history of how we got the life as new believers. It's the engineering book on how we got. It's more like the physics book on how we got the life because you can't change the laws of physics they just are what they are. And this is the physics of what Jesus did and how what he accomplished matters on behalf of the believer. It is not a manual to tell you if you do this you will have the life other than those who call up the name of the Lord and put their trust in Him and believe in him shall be saved. Other than that there is no instruction because it's all about what Jesus has done. But if you're not reading those portions of the scripture that I was glossing over and passing over for years then you're never going to see that. And so you may be saying well what are the passages of scripture that you're talking about specifically. I'm going to give you it doesn't work in every situation. So don't find the one book that it doesn't work with.
But basically in the New Testament if you read every epistle just the first half of it the first two to three chapters of every epistle in the New Testament Romans set aside because it's all this, but in Hebrews, it's kind of all this. But if you read the first half of Galatians the first half of Ephesians the first half of Philippians the first half of both of the Thessalonians books if you read the first half of those it's all about what Jesus did for us and had done for us and what's been accomplished in the spirit for us and not what we do but what has been done on our behalf by Jesus Christ. When you read that stuff. It's plain.
It is straight in your face. The gospel of grace I'm and I didn't even try to I mean I'm over here. I'm a poet and I didn't even know it. Come on somebody so. But listen. When you read those. It's so. It is so potent. GRACE GOSPEL field material but what happens is as we look at it and us kind of just gloss over it because it's.
Some of it's a little more complex it's not as straightforward as do this I mean you read Ephesians 1 2 and 3 and you don't know what to do with it until it says that he can do immeasurably exceedingly abundantly above whatever you can ask or imagine. And that's where we pick up and start using it as right at an Ephesians 3 20, and then we boom right into Ephesians 4 and all of a sudden its Husbands love your wife as Christ loved the church we're talking about the offices of the church. We aren't using that material before that to see the gospel of Christ and as a matter of fact if you want a little context this isn't all my notes but evasions 320 he can do immeasurably exceedingly abundantly above all you can ask or think has nothing to do with Think Big and God will give you more. It has to do with if you don't understand the Gospel the mysteries of the gospel. He can give you an understanding that you wouldn't be able to understand otherwise.
That's powerful right there. I could take you through the whole context. I'm not going to. That'll be another podcast.
Man I got amped up but I felt my energy I don't know where that came from. I'm just I'm failing at all of a sudden come on somebody. Hey, I see you up there.
Back to what I was saying the most transformative thing that happened in my life was simply reading the Bible for myself and at this time I'm also coming into some you know some strategic things were happening I actually was thinking about this the other day. Tony, you're watching the live stream. I know you're listening to the podcast what's in the video because you are just a great friend and mentor and you support and are so kind to everything that we do. But I was thinking about something. I went in 2011 2012. Remember when it was at the same time I'm starting to really read the scripture for the first time on my own. I think it was in the middle of really through the first time. And I do this record with Tony Sutherland.
Who on a whim decided to have me come in and play bass. I actually had to buy a bass to do Zayat sold mine. You don't know. I'm a bass player. That was my primary instrument. And I do this record with him that never got released. We did a whole thing and it never got released.
But on that trip I was staying at his house. We were having to travel like an hour hour and a half to get to the area where we were recording every day and he's got me in the car reading passages of the Bible to him and then he's expounding on it and it was like I was just being immersed in the gospel of grace because for a few years he'd been coming into that I don't know if you'd written Grace works then or not Tony but you know if you haven't read this book I mean this is an absolutely phenomenal book Grace warcry written by Toni Southern being picked that up on Amazon or Toni Sutherland dotcom that that book will change your life and give you a great grace perspective.
Second only to grace for life hosted by Jason Mayfield obviously but it's a great resource. So go check that out. But all of this stuff was happening. And it changed my life. And so fast forward a few years.
I'm coming into this revelation we're understanding stuff that we've never understood. I mean I'm I'm I'm getting this massive understanding of the scripture God is teaching me stuff through the Holy Ghost that I had never never thought about. Never thought I would believe I would read passages of scripture that didn't make any dadgum sense.
I mean y'all know what I'm talking about. You'll read them passages of scripture that don't make any sense. I have a red pen. I read the Bible with an about understanding it gets underlined or circled in red pen and I come back to it later because there is some stuff. Don't make any sense. Grace for life. Season 3 I actually am sharing two or three things that never made sense until I started recording those episodes or started preparing those episodes to really bring some insight to some stuff especially about suffering in Romans chapter 8 or 9 or 10 wherever that's at. So um.
So we'd we'd been going. I'd been expanding this revelation and I came into 2014. We'd gone through a really difficult situation with our daughter being born at 24 weeks. She's super healthy Hield more child than you can handle most of the time which makes her super fun and super cute but at the time we'd just come through that and we decide it was time for us to transition. We knew there was a new ministry phase that we were transitioning into. At the time we really thought that was going to be senior pasturing.
In hindsight and with foresight I do believe that there's a senior pastorate probably in the cards for me.
In hindsight it's obvious that God didn't want us to do it because if he did, he would have opened the door you know or something would've happened regardless of the situation we were going through. That being said. We thought we were transitioning into senior pastor ministry because sometimes God will let you believe what you need to believe to get you where he wants you to go.
Or to let his purposes shake out the way he wants them to shake out. And so we started looking and there was a situation going on at our church that was very very ugly not for us it was behind the scenes that dealt with some of the morality issues with the leadership with the pastor that later came out and but we were the scapegoat and we ended up going through a very difficult difficult difficult. I mean I'm talking difficult. I'm talking I've been dealing with it for a few years. Difficult. I'm talking I'm still by the grace of God able to press on but dealing with it on a regular basis difficult church transition.
And but out of that process somehow. There was a financial situation. That became available to us. That basically allowed me to start Grace for life. The nonprofit the nonprofit organizations all of the legal stuff the equipment that we needed to start forming all of the. Teachings and putting them online which since then with the approval of my board at full value that we paid.
I've gone back and purchased all of that equipment personally and now we even use that to make money on other deals, so nothing that we're using here today is owned by Grace for life. We pretty much self-fund that at this point through whatever we've got going on multiple streams of income. Come on somebody teach about that one day because that'll change your life as well. I'm actually on talk about that in just a second but.
Somehow we got into this situation where we had a financial contribution from the church that allowed us to start this ministry because I knew I was called to preach this word. That's why I really thought I was going into a senior pastor ministry because I had all this big church growing churches experience but I had this revelation and all of a sudden I wasn't in a position where that was going to go through anytime soon but I could preach and it was a conversation I had with another friend of mine Bishop Jamie Inglehart that really led me to the place where I said I've got to use whatever is in my hand and I've got the word I've got the technology proficiency. So let me just use what I have to make it happen. And initially, I was only going to do it with my cell phone. That was the plan I was going to use my cell phone. I was going to put the teachings out there. And that was going to be it. But through the provision of the Lord, we were able to get all this equipment make some real stuff come on somebody some real stuff. So we're going through all this process. I think I'd started Grace for life or I was recording gearing up and we were still living in Michigan at the time and. Thanksgiving came around and so we were traveling over to see Asheligh's family. On Thanksgiving Day 2014. And this was one of those moments where the Holy Spirit kind of by just the course of the conversation taken his own direction and doing its own thing.
The Holy Spirit confronted me and by way of that confronted me and my wife about our financial situation want to back you up to that difficult church situation I went through. I took a severance package that I did not want to take. Had to take it because of our financial situation I was in a position where. To care for our family, I needed to do it.
But it was hush money. It went away money. Keep your peace money. I shouldn't have taken it. And if I had fifty thousand dollars sitting in the bank I would not have taken that money. Is it the Holy Spirit asked me. He said. What if money was no issue.
Not in the sense that you know what have you just had all the money in the world when you're sitting on a billion dollars. But what if money wasn't a determining factor in the decisions that you made. What if your employment your leaves your employment. The ministry decisions when you move where you go what if that stuff was not contingent on your financial situation. Man.
That was a powerful word. And so what we did is we responded to that and we started to really look at our life and out of that word. I thought it had a lot more to do with me than it did. I think it had more to do with actually than it did with me. It changed me and we switched roles in our house actually up to this point was the budget or the bill payer. She took care of all that we switch that over to me. And up to this point, I was the make all the money. Make sure you know something is coming home and Asheligh started to take that. Role more over the course of a few years to where if you don't know anything about Asheligh she's a network marketer she's an entrepreneurial spirit. Asheligh. Shouldn't like it when I say this because there's a lot of work behind the scenes that makes it happen it doesn't just happen but to you know the best way to describe it is like Asheligh wakes up and money somehow gravitates towards Asheligh. She works for it but there are opportunities that become available to her and she makes it she's over there making a gesture with her fingers right now. Because money makes its way in. It's so we started to see this transition financially.
And I mean really powerful really powerful transition. And so we moved to Florida. I did take another ministry position. But in 2016 we really looked at our future and our finances and what we wanted to accomplish and we decided to step away from the pastoral full-time church staff member ministry to build these multiple streams of income to the point where we could be self-sustaining. I will let you know that when we stepped away.
That was not the case. We did. We have we had money coming in. We did not have enough money to survive on a regular basis. When we stepped away from the trash guy just showed up I think and he is loud out there if you hear that man.
And so in 2016.
And now in 2017 we've really been building that and juggling multiple streams of income and doing Grace for life which I do for free but it's a lot of work. But I do it for free but it's a lot of work but I do it for free and juggling all these multiple streams of income and running the house and making it's just been tough. But recently I had a conversation again with my friend Tony Sutherland who confronted me and just said straight up you need to treat Grace for life like your full-time job. That's what you're called to that's what your purpose is.
And so that's what we're doing and we're gonna figure out a way to make it work and so that's kind of brings us to this point where we have episodes scheduled through March the first Monday in March episode scheduled as we speak. Season 3 Grace for life coming back.
Working on a daily content solution probably through something like you're seeing and hearing right now. I keep hitting the microphone though. We're going to have to figure that dynamic out because I keep hitting the microphone because I talk with my hands and it's right here. You know what I'm saying. I'm just I'm getting it. It's in the zone. It's it's in the hand's zone. OK, it's in the emotion zone. It's in the Felix zone as in the Holy Ghost anointed zone. OK. Where it gets hit. And I mean I'm shocked this microphone hasn't been slain in the spirit. OK. For you, Pentecostals were listening I'm shocked that it hasn't just gone down under the power. I used to have a pastor who said he said I like go down under the power he I don't like slain in the spirit it sounds too lethal. And so I would agree with that. It's a very lethal audience.
All this stuff is happening so they exciting real big picture of everything that I've said to you today is that grace for life is coming back. 2018 is going to be Grace for life content Central. It is going to. Happen. So. So.
That's really like the end of the podcast I really have nothing else to share. So if you find value in what we're doing, you can obviously access all of the old content we're calling them classic episodes at this point because they're so old. I changed all of the thumbnails on YouTube just like classic episode over 30 I don't remember how many it is. I think it's 38 episodes covering the first half of Romans. All of Galatians all available on YouTube. Available on this podcast available on our Web site Grace for live TV. You can access it all over the place. Go check those out. Be blessed by it if you never have. If you have to go rant back through a man because we're about to hit Romans 8. So these are really a nice consecutive build into what's happening January 1st. But other than that I'm Jason Mayfield. I'm the host of Grace for life and until next time I'm praying that you continue to experience Grace for life through Jesus Christ. See you next time.