Pros & Cons of Spiritual Free Agency

My mother loved her life, but it wasn’t without its regrets. I remember her telling me how she wished she finished her education and embarked on a path of fulfillment. To this day, I really don’t know what exactly my mother wanted to do with her life. She passed away at the young age of 52. However, I know without a doubt what she wanted for me. She would encourage me from an early age to be and do exactly what fulfilled me. Even if it were to be a ditch digger, she would say you make me proud and be the best ditch digger. Her heart’s desire was for me to always learn, formally and informally. She would push me to read, study and gain as much knowledge in what stirs my passion and live it out with every fiber of my being.

Well, I’ve done exactly that. I got an education in Computer Science & Information Systems Management; I’ve enjoyed the privilege of deploying my formal learning in the US Air Force, and great companies like Texas Instruments, Acer, Grande Communications, 2Wire and Pace. I climbed the ladder of success from apprentice tape monkey and first level call taker to Operations Manager overseeing cross department and multi-site computer and telecommunication functions. Along the way, I’ve even had the honor of coaching some amazing young men in football, basketball and track, as well as being a general manager of a movie theater.

In all my experience and leadership engagements, none have fulfilled me as much or transformed my life as being in full time ministry. During much of my employment tenures, I’ve always been connected to a local church serving from youth leader, associate pastor, regional youth director, pioneering a church plant to, most recently, pastoring a church. My wife and I love being on mission, serving local indigenous pastors, caring for widows and orphans, and overseeing churches in the bush of Kenya that we started a missions ministry, Breathe International, in 2010. We even partner with other ministries and non-profits by running 5K’s, 10K’s, half and full marathons that both directly or indirectly support and sponsor their missions.

So far it sounds like I’ve had a fulfilling life and career, but here’s the kick in the shorts. My formal education and experience, regardless of how much money I earn, has and will never compare to the overwhelming fulfillment of Christ grace transforming the lives of men, women and children around the world. So much passion for missions burns deep within my spirit that I just can’t bring myself to walk another day as an indentured servant to the “American Dream”. Don’t get me wrong the annual salaries; benefits and other compensations are very nice and hard to pass up. However, what does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses or forfeits himself?” (Luke 9:25)

Free Agency

2015 is the 30th anniversary of my personal transformation and ministry in Christ. It marks a journey through the amazing experience love, grace and mercy to overcome overwhelming odds. In this milestone year, I’ve found myself as a “Free Agent” and frankly I’m terrified. God has not brought me so far to let me fall, but the natural circumstances ahead of me demand a supernatural intervention.

Unlike professional athletes who become “Free Agents”, there’s no agent working on my behalf to find me that next team who will pay millions for my perceived value and worth. There’s no business, church, ministry, etc. beating down my door, blowing up my phone or chasing after me to come work for them. Instead, it’s a journey of balancing how to provide for my family and relentlessly pursuing this mission with passion, intentionality and fulfillment.

As I’ve walked out the last couple weeks of free agency, I’ve encountered the following Pros & Cons that I would like to share:

PRO:

  • Not tied to a time clock, company or boss expectations
  • Full autonomy to set my own course and destination
  • Liberty to manage my own schedule and commitments
  • Availability to family, friends and mission
  • Uninterrupted time to dream and cast vision, study and equip, write and impart
  • Provide strategic Kingdom solutions instead of corporate bottom line fixes
  • Potential to earn as much as I am willing to invest

CON:

  • Combating emotional distractions of idleness, anxiety and fear
  • No steady stream of income and extended lean periods
  • Falling behind on bills or increasing debt to pay them
  • Diminishing professional value in the market place
  • Financial strain and tension on marriage and family
  • Being forgotten and discarded
  • Failure

For the record, I’m not just sitting around waiting for some big opportunity to fall in my lap. I’m intentionally and faithfully submitting my resume and applying for positions in my profession. It’s not what I want to do, but I know I must be vigilant in my pursuit to provide and meet my obligations; however, at the same time I am investing in the passion that drives me, what fulfills me and where my heart is most engaged: #mission – #community – #discipleship.

Continue to pray for me as I walk out this next chapter of my life and transition to where God is leading me. If there is anything I can do to partner with you to advance your mission, church or business, let’s get connected and turn this world upside down.

James Miller Jr
“Missionary to a Generation”

Help Find Sadie…

******* PTL! ‪#‎SadieBear‬ is back home. She’s safe, tired & has a slight limp. Will take her to vet in the morning. Thx to all who prayed & reposted. *******

Last night when we got home from celebrating the 4th with family, we went through our normal routine of letting the dogs out & getting settled. Sadie, my daughter’s almost 2 year old lab-mix, came down to greet us. The outside lights to the house hadn’t been turned on, so everything was dark. I hit the lights to back yard & let Sadie out to do her business. Then went straight upstairs to get my son’s 8 month old great pyrenees-mix & let her out. Normally by the time we get the 2nd dog down & out, the 1st is done & we do the doggy potty swap shuffle at the door. Well Sadie wasn’t waiting at the door. I didn’t think too much about it since fireworks were going off all over & she may have been a little more anxious while out. I let Bailey out & called for Sadie. Sadie is just a good dog. She always comes when you call her, but this time no response. I called again, turned on the flash light to my phone & began to check the yard. She was no where to be found. I checked the gate & it was tightly latched. I made another check of the yard then ran inside to let Becky know Sadie was gone. She went out front to call for her while I checked the rest of the house, per chance I missed her sneak in while letting Bailey out. When I caught up with Becky outside, she said that a car, which was parked in front of the house when we arrived was no longer there. It’s not like Sadie to run or go with strangers. As a matter of fact, she’s is so protective of the family, she’s good for ripping your hand off before shaking it. This entire ordeal lasted less than 3 minutes. Since it’s not in Sadie’s nature to run & she would have gone to the front door even if she had got out. We realized whomever was in the car most likely took her. Our evaluation of the situation even gets creepier. We believe whomever owned that car was most likely already in the backyard planning to do something to the house, since it was completely dark inside & out. When I turned on the outside light & let Sadie out, that changed their plan & Sadie was swept up out of haste. This seems like an episode of the Twilight Zone. No signs of force on the gate, no blood, no signs of scuffle, fighting or disturbance on the grass. I just mowed, so there is a layer of grass clippings over the entire yard. No sign of foot prints or whatever. So, I write this in hopes whomever reads this, especially if you are in the San Marcos Texas area, will repost & be on the lookout for Sadie. She has a rabies tag & name tag with our daughter’s phone number on it. She has an ID chip that I am going to report her stolen with the company. She was wearing a pink collar with orange bow. She is very skittish & anti social to strangers. Will most likely come across as unfriendly, cower & bark/growl fiercely. If you see her or hear of a dog matching this description, please contact us immediately.

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Click pic for lost flyer information.

Double Portion Madness…Stop It!

I grieve every time I hear people pray Elisha’s “double portion” prayer, especially preachers during an ordination service, youth camp commissioning, or even trying to invoke and incite revival in a meeting. You know the one from 2 Kings 2:9.

When they had crossed, Elijah said to Elisha, “Ask what I shall do for you, before I am taken from you.” And Elisha said, “Please let there be a double portion of your spirit on me.”

Why must we try to sound so spiritual, attempt to cajole God to give us more anointing, or even worse conjure up the body into an emotional frenzy? For a moment just consider the very foolishness of this common practice.

Why would we want a double portion of Elijah’s spirit and anointing? We have the fullness of the Holy Spirit, in Christ Jesus. How dare we water down the same Spirit and power that raised Christ from the dead, which lives and dwells in us (Romans 8:9-11)? Is it that we don’t truly believe or lack faith in the Son who gave us ALL authority to go make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, and teaching them to observe all He commanded us (Matthew 28:18-20)? Jesus declared the works He did and greater we will do (John 14:12-14).

We don’t need a double portion…we don’t even use the portion we’ve been imparted and entrusted with. Let me remind us before we continue to pervert the Spirit and anointing for our own rhetorical pleasure…

GOD’S LOVE is ENOUGH! – CHRIST GRACE is ENOUGH!
The HOLY SPIRIT’S POWER is ENOUGH! – STOP THE MADNESS!