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January 1st isn’t the only day for fresh starts.

Starting this Summer, The Hub has been thrilled to bring you two new features on our site–you can book a dynamic speaker directly for your church or group event AND you can join us for Live Access Webinars.

Because when the content is this good, sometimes you need to catch the live show: BRAND NEW HUB LIVE EVENTS.

By |August 10th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

How Much Is Enough? Sustaining Contentment

by Josh Lawson

 

Over the past couple of blog posts we have gone on a journey to discover the lost secret of contentment. In our day and age it truly is a virtue that is rarely sought and even more rarely found. But I believe that contentment is the key to finding true purpose and peace in our financial lives. No amount of possessions or power can ever give you the clarity of heart and mind that contentment can.

Isaiah says it this way in chapter 26 verse 3, “You (God) will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.”

Perfect. Peace. Just imagine what that must feel like!

And that “perfect peace” is only found as we fix our minds on Christ alone and trust Him to be our satisfaction in life. In Him alone can we find our contentment.

Prone To Wander
But we all wander. The old hymn says it perfectly, “Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it, Prone to leave the God I love.” We all have this tendency to wander from that perfect peace and contentment that we find in Christ alone. We tend to chase shiny things and believe the lie that the “fruit of the tree” will eventually satisfy us.

How Do We Sustain Contentment?
So, how can we not just learn the secret of contentment, but how can we SUSTAIN our contentment for the long haul?
We must learn to guard our hearts. Solomon says to his son in chapter 4 of Proverbs, “Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.” Solomon has many things to his son, but he says that most important thing he can do is to guard his heart. Other translations say to “watch over your heart with all diligence, for from it flow the springs of life.” In order to sustain a contented heart, we must diligently preserve the purity of our heart.

What this means practically is that we must acknowledge and fight the day to day temptations that will cause us to grow in discontentment.

Let me explain with an example. Several years ago my wife, Jenny, and I were perfectly happy with our house. It was a quaint little place, but it was perfect for our little family. However, within a matter of months, several of our friends began buying or building new homes. We celebrated with them and were happy for their new homes, but it awakened something inside of us. Now we weren’t happy with our house. Now we suddenly NEEDED a new house! We started looking at real estate websites and “window shopping online” for our dream house. We were desperate for our own place to call our own!

But what changed?

Absolutely nothing except suddenly it awakened a need inside of us because we saw what others had. The Bible calls this envy. A quick definition of envy is “a feeling of discontented or resentful longing aroused by someone else’s possessions, qualities, or luck.” The Bible also calls this one of the seven deadly sins! We can sugar coat it as drive and a “blessing of God,” but at its core it is sin and it is after our hearts.

Guard Your Heart
Day in and day out, we are constantly barraged with opportunities to allow envy to fester in our hearts. We look at other people’s dream homes, dream lives, dream spouses, dream kids on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. We salivate over their snapshots of a perfect life and grow disgruntled with our messy, less-than-perfect, behind-the-scenes life full of dirty dishes and piles of laundry.

Guard Your Heart.

Our inboxes are full of emails promising satisfaction in a vacation or new shoes or perfect piece of furniture. Stores scream to come and spend your money on this or that to give yourself a moment of peace and fulfillment.
Guard Your Heart.

Our televisions are full of commercials that scream for our attention and affection. They promise a perfect body, beach-front house, and a beautiful girlfriend all from drinking a specific beer!

Guard Your Heart.

The Fight of Your Life
Contentment is one of the hardest things that you will ever have to learn in your life. And it is even harder to fight for once you have found it. But the key is to fight. Don’t pitty-patter around with envy. Its path promises to satisfy you, but only leads to death.

James says it this way, “But every person is tempted when he is drawn away, enticed and baited by his own evil desire (lust, passions).Then the evil desire, when it has conceived, gives birth to sin, and sin, when it is fully matured, brings forth death. Do not be misled, my beloved brethren.”

It is most definitely a fight for your life. But the promise of God is that He will not just give us enough to survive, but He will satisfy the deepest places of our hearts. And when we are satisfied in Him alone, that is the greatest place of peace and purpose our lives will ever have.

About the Author
Josh Lawson serves as the director of Community Restoration (formerly Financial Restoration Ministry) at Antioch Community Church in Waco, Texas. He is passionate about seeing families set free from the burden of debt and financial stress, so that they are free to walk in the freedom that Christ has for them.

While serving at Antioch Community Church, Josh and his wife Jenny have developed the REALIGN curriculum. During that time the total amount of debt that has been paid off by both class attendees and those receiving financial coaching has been well over $3 Million dollars.

By |April 14th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

What Can Satisfy Us? The Secrets to Contentment

by Josh Lawson

We had been dreaming of doing this renovation for years. It took us months and months to save up the money, and we had finally reached the point where we could pay for it in cash. The contractors came in and did an amazing job and the finished product was immaculate. During this process, my wife and I promised one another that if we could do just this one renovation we would never ask for another thing. This would be the project to end all projects.

But just one week after the project was finished, we sat in our living room and started to board the “Complain Train.” Have you ever been on it too? It goes a little something like this, “This is wrong… yeah and this…. Oh and this… Yeah and this!”

“All aboard the Complain Train! Final destination, misery and despair!”

We had this incredible product that we had always dreamed of, but we were still not satisfied. We still wanted a little bit more.

But haven’t we all been there? We thought those shoes would be the shoes to end all shoes, but 30 minutes after we bought them we were just as miserable as before. Or we thought that as soon as we said “I Do” at the altar, all of our hopes and dreams of feeling loved and accepted would be satisfied. Then the honeymoon happened. Or we think that if we can get a raise then we will finally be able to stop being stressed out by money. But it never happens.

We are never fully satisfied by the things that we think should satisfy us.

What Can Satisfy Us?
Deep in the heart of each of us we are all hungry. We have been constructed with a very legitimate need to be satisfied. But in the brokenness of our world, we believe we can fill that need with stuff. However, God in His kindness (and “smartness”) has created each of us to never fully be satisfied by the things of this world, but instead by Him alone.

The first secret of learning contentment is to realize that our satisfaction is never found in our provision, a place, or a person, but in Jesus alone.

When we are satisfied in Him alone, then everything else has its right place and can be enjoyed.
Let me explain. If I believe that God has given me my wife to be my place to find happiness, I will be constantly demanding her to make me happy. And when we aren’t happy in our marriage, then it must not be God and it must be her fault, so I will toss her out and move on to the next thing to make me happy. However, if I believe that God alone is my place of satisfaction, then I can love and adore my wife without any expectation that she meet a need that only God can. And when good times come, I am content. When bad times come, I am content. Because my contentment is not dependent upon my circumstances or how my wife acts, but on the consistency of the person of Jesus.

The Second Secret to Learning Contentment

The second secret of learning contentment is to be thankful for the provision that God has given you.

Only days before we boarded the “Complain Train,” we were in awe of how beautiful our house was. But as we noticed every little thing that was wrong, it caused us to grow more and more discontent.

The next morning I was reading in 1 Thessalonians 5:18 where it says, “Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is the will of God for you in Christ Jesus.” In that moment, I felt God speak to my heart and say, “Joshua, I want you to be thankful.”

I responded with a bland and robotic, “Yes sir. Thank you.”

Then He spoke again, “No, I want you to actively thank me.”

So I got up from my chair and told Jenny that I thought God wanted us to thank Him for the things in our house that He had given us. She obliged and we began to go room to room and thank God for all the little things we had been given. We sarcastically started with the toaster, “God, thank you for this shiny toaster that we have been given. It creates great toast.”

But as we continued throughout the house, our snarky smiles began to subside and tears welled up in our eyes. By the end of that time, we were weeping on the ground thanking God for His goodness and provision in our lives, and begging for forgiveness for being spoiled brats constantly demanding more but forgetting our past blessings.
We recognized in that moment that we have a good Father God who has always provided for us, but our lack of thankfulness was leading us to forget His goodness and His provision and leading us into deep discontentment.

Thanklessness + Forgetfulness = Discontentment
Thankfulness + Deeper Awareness = Deeper Contentment

Foundations of Contentment

The first two keys to learning the secret of contentment are to:
1) Know that God is our only place of satisfaction
2) Choose to be thankful for the things that God has provided.

As we learn these two keys, it will allow us to enjoy the provision of God with greater freedom and peace.

The Final Key

The third key is the most significant of all in sustaining a contented heart and we will discuss this in our next post!
See you then!

About the Author
Josh Lawson serves as the director of Community Restoration (formerly Financial Restoration Ministry) at Antioch Community Church in Waco, Texas. He is passionate about seeing families set free from the burden of debt and financial stress, so that they are free to walk in the freedom that Christ has for them.

While serving at Antioch Community Church, Josh and his wife Jenny have developed the REALIGN curriculum. During that time the total amount of debt that has been paid off by both class attendees and those receiving financial coaching has been well over $3 Million dollars.

Follow Josh on Twitter: @joshvlawson

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By |April 7th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Margaret Feinberg – Fight Back with Joy – New Tour!

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Information sheets - Fight Back 2015 (4)

Contact us for more information! info@gotothehub.com

By |November 12th, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Philip Yancey at Maranatha Chapel – San Diego, CA

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Thank you, Team!


From Left: Anthony Evans, Tom Dean, Philip and Janet Yancey

Special shout out to Anthony Evans, Tom Dean, and Philip and Janet Yancey!



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Thank you!


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It has been a pleasure working with you! Thank you for approaching this event with kind hearts and sweet spirits, sharing your church and family, and providing such a wonderful environment for Philip, Anthony, and our partners. We couldn’t have done it without you!



With the generosity of Maranatha and the people of San

Diego, 163 children now have life-saving sponsors!





Thank you to all who supported Philip and Anthony by spending the evening

with them and listening to their hearts!

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For a culture that has become rejecting of Christianity, it is ever more important for Christians to show the love and grace of God through actions as well as through words. The church must approach and interact with others, knowing we live in a world that rejects the idea of sin and eternal consequences. Philip Yancey kicked off this spectacular tour, speaking on the idea of grace in a post-Christian society, and launched his book Vanishing Grace at Maranatha Chapel in San Diego, CA. With truth displayed and matched with spirit-engaging worship by Anthony Evans, this event was quite a hit! We look forward to the next six stops on this tour and hope that even if you can’t make it, you’ll pick up a copy of Vanishing Grace!
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By |October 27th, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments

A Writer’s Life with Philip Yancey

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Philip Yancey has spoken on grace before. In a book that touched lives throughout the world, Philip began a journey of discovering why Christians seem to have a hard time showing grace to those around them. What’s So Amazing About Grace? very quickly became a challenging call to Christians everywhere to revamp their understanding of grace and delve deep into their own lives; to show God’s grace to everyone they encounter.
Philip returns now with the sequel to his award-winning book: Vanishing Grace: What Ever Happened to the Good News? Seeing the changes happening rapidly throughout the country, Philip once again raises the question of grace. Where is it, and why do we have to search it out? He takes it a step further, tackling the topic of how to live out grace in a world that is hostile to Christianity. Seeing and anticipating the major changes our society is undergoing, Philip jumps ahead and says, “hey, this is what we can do about it.”


Here is a blog he wrote for one of our tour friends, FaithLife (formerly Logos):







A writer’s life is a strange combination of isolation and busyness.

The act of writing itself requires quiet, reflective time. I can’t write if someone walks into the room. I block out distractions by listening to music through my headphones, and by shutting off my cell phone and email program.

Eventually, though I have to pay for the isolation. Right now I’m sitting on an airplane frantically trying to catch up on the accumulated emails and scheduling details that I put off while writing. A new book is being released—Vanishing Grace: What Ever Happened to the Good News?—which I’ll be presenting to a group of pastors in Boston. While flying east for that event, I’m reviewing notes and fine-tuning a PowerPoint file. Soon I’ll take that presentation on a seven-city book tour.

When I’m writing, I focus on one thing only. When I’m catching up, I flit from place to place like a hummingbird. Flying across Ohio, suddenly I remember a strange and confusing passage I read in the Bible this morning. It appears in the latter part of Ezekiel, a series of very detailed instructions on the building of the temple and the resumption of animal sacrifices. Many of the rules described echo those in Leviticus, but some have changed. Why is so much space devoted to these details? I ask myself. And what does this passage have to do with us today? I wonder how modern Jews, who have nothing resembling the temple described, interpret these chapters with their architectural specificity. Are the blueprints symbolic or literal?

When a line of questioning starts bugging me, I have great difficulty getting back to other tasks. Magically, because I have Logos Bible Software, I can look up the answers right now, sitting in a chair in the sky zooming across the American heartland. I have access to hundreds of Bible resources on my laptop computer, and in a few minutes I can survey a variety of opinions from scholars who have addressed my very questions.

Last weekend I spent hours moving hundreds of books and reference works out of danger from a basement flood. Thinking back, I have to smile at the contrast between those books, which take up so much space in my office, and a software program I can carry in my coat pocket. In some ways I’m old-fashioned. I still listen to classical music, I stubbornly cling to my flip-style “dumb phone,” and I don’t use Twitter. I must tell you, though, that I am forever grateful to live in an age that makes it possible for me to carry the wisdom of the ages with me, wherever I go.


–Philip Yancey






Don’t miss out on hearing this message in person! Join Philip as he travels with Anthony Evans, participant of The Voice, on his 7-city tour this fall — details available here!




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By |October 13th, 2014|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Song of Solomon, Tommy Nelson, and Favorite Valentine’s Day Idea

Friends –

Every one of us needs help at Valentine’s Day. Occassionaly, a few of us really knock it out of the park. But, truthfully, most men just get so paralyzed but what to do, we do nothing at all. And when you do nothing at all, you don’t get ‘nothing at all’ – you actually potentially lose it all.

It was in 1994 the very first time I heard Tommy Nelson from Denton Bible Church teach on The Song of Solomon. My life was forever changed. Fast forward one year, and in May of 1995 I am married to the love of my life and my best friend, Carrie, and we are sitting together listening to Song of Solomon a second time, and this time we had bee married for just over 2 months.

You see, the very first time I heard Song of Solomon was January of 1994 and I was leading a bible study called Metro Bible Study in Dallas at Prestonwood Baptist Church. We were expecting about 600 people that first Monday night and before you knew it there were 900 and within the 6 weeks to the final lesson we were passed fire code at 2000 plus. Only God, and maybe His truth on love, dating and sex perhaps could do something like that!

The Song of Solomon and it’s teaching has had an immearsurable impact around the world. It has impacted millions, both married and single, and it challenged and encouraged thousands of pastors to preach on this book of scripture that had been basically censored for 2000 years. I would almost bet, that any preacher who has preached on it since 1995 has used Tommy’s teaching, either by the video or audio, or The Book of Romance by Thomas Nelson as a reference guide.

Here are a few of may favorite things about Song of Solomon by Tommy Nelson:
1. It’s Biblcial – it is a verse by verse Bible Study. I have watched people’s eyes and lives over 150 times as Tommy has taught this and something magical, spiritual happens when people connect God is a positive way to love and sexuality. Yes, actually God is the inventor of sex and He is quite proud of it. It is the world and satan who has deceived us to at a minimum confuse us, if not to poison it completely for many.
2. It’s funny. A spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down. This subject gets so intenese, so intimate, without humor it would just get downright creepy. The laugher opens our heart for the Holy Spirit to then convict with shame, but with true conviction.
3. It’s redemptive. There is so much scar tissue the entire world has around sexuality and relationships and there always will be. God is never expecting perfection from us, so we must believe and know that no matter what you have gone through, God’s plan is to forgive you and heal you. Yes there is hard work on our part generally, but no shame, only healing conviction and instruction.
4. The teaching on Song of Solomon by Tommy Nelson is just so practical. It doesn’t live in theory, it is real, honest, and hepful tools.
5. It is one of the single, greatest pre – marital teaching resource or marriage intervention teaching resource I have ever seen.
6. And finally, it will be all new and all Live this February!

Tommy will teach live every Tuesday night in February from 7 – 8PM CST. It will be available On Demand each Wednesday by 10AM. So, get your friends together at the house or apartment, make 4 dates with your spouse or if you are a church leader, bring in one of the worlds most beloved and gifted communicators for a 4 week series for less than the cost of one plane ticket.

LEARN MORE ABOUT LIVE WITH TOMMY AND SONG OF SOLOMON: http://www.gotothehub.com/live-events/tommy-nelson-live-online-teaching/

As I started this blog, husband, wife, single, what will you do this February to invest in the single greatest relationship on earth, given by God? Make your plans now – whatever God lays on your heart and mind to do.

Bless you and thanks for your time!

By |January 9th, 2014|Song of Solomon, Tommy Nelson, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Texas artist creates 2014 calendar to help feed kids in Kenya

What started out as a simple Christmas gift for a friend, has turned into a movement to pray, feed and serve 500 kids in the Kibera slums in Kenya by January 15th. Each of us looks at a calendar everyday, now there is the opportunity to purchase this limited edition calendar and put it on your kitchen table, desk, by your TV, or wherever you or your family gather. The purchase of this calendar provides an opportunity to enjoy the charming artwork and a reminder to pray for a child who is in a real world struggle for the basics of life, and certainly the need for Jesus, a need we all share.order-button2



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In the Kibera slum in Kenya one million people are crammed into an area of about one square mile. Most of the structures are shacks made out of whatever they can find. The average size of homes here is about 9 feet by 9 feet. But what makes it more shocking is that most of the homes have 8 or more people living in them. There is absolutely no indoor plumbing; and access to clean water is limited.

There is a stream of sewage that runs through Kibera. The sanitation problem is one of reasons one in nine children in Kenya die before age 5. Other major causes of death here are diarrhea, Hepatitis A, AIDS, and malaria.

It is not uncommon for families to spend their entire lives and never leave the slums.

Lindsey Nobles, Director of Conference, Speakers, and Social Media Fundraising for Feed The Children

 

 

The Hub has partnered with Feed the Children and a local Texas artist to create these limited edition handmade calendars. With each purchase, Feed the Children will receive ten percent to support their work in feeding over 195,000 meals per day in the Kibera slums and Kenya. Each printed calendar includes a recycled Christmas tree “stump stand” that has been wood burned with the name of a child who lives in this impoverished community and is being cared for and supported by Feed the Children every day.

There are only 500 limited edition prints, each numbered, so be sure to provide you and your family with the opportunity to enjoy each month’s artwork and pray for your child and their families.

The details:

  1. Limited to the first 500 orders, each print is numbered by the artist
  2. Order between 12/15 – 1/15, or until they are sold out
  3. Orders will ship between 10-15 days after order is placed
  4. Learn more about Feed the Children at www.ftc.org
  5. Is this a Christmas gift? Download this PDF picture in case it won’t make it under the tree in time!
  6. See the list of children you will be supporting and praying for!

Just so you are aware of the quality and the breadth of the work that Feed The Children offer, they provide relief in Kibera in four major areas:

  • Food and Nutrition
  • Water and Sanitation
  • Health and Education
  • Livelihood Development

To learn more about Feed the Children and the amazing and real work they are involved with, please visit our friends at www.feedthechildren.org

order-button2Thank you from The Hub, Feed The Children and the families in Kibera for your generosity and we hope that you enjoy the 2014 Calendar Art and Prayer Calendar.

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By |December 12th, 2013|Uncategorized|1 Comment

Why Do We Call it Christmas? – Colorado Springs, CO – Recap!

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Special thanks to Woodmen Valley Chapel in Colorado Springs, Colorado for hosting a evening of fun, Christmas truth for your community! The event was hopping with kids and parents, excited and eager to meet Phil Vischer and his new set of characters including Buck Denver, and to find out the real meaning and origin of our Christmas traditions.

During the video these families learned where the name of Christmas came from, where Santa Claus originated, and why we celebrate the birthday of our Lord and Savior on December 25th! Join us in The Woodlands, TX on 12/8, and Roseville, CA  (Free event!) on 12/15 to see for yourself!

Thanks to Phil Vischer and team for bringing such an informative and creative program to the kids! It is a blessing to work with such a great team!

By |December 9th, 2013|Uncategorized|0 Comments

The Gospel Tour – James River Assembly, Springfield, MO — Recap!

 

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Special thanks to everyone who made this Tour possible! Thank you James River Assembly for an amazing night of truth-teaching, life-changing, good ol’ fashion (but never outdated!) Gospel. Thank you Pastor Matt and Pastor Tullian for all the hard work, love, and dedication that goes into messages like these! Thanks to Ben Cantelon for the wonderful worship! And of course thanks to Logos Bible Software and David C. Cook!

 

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Special shout out to all who participated in the simulcast! We know it’s not easy to fly around the country and truly appreciate you joining in for such a night as this!

We look forward to bringing you many more events like The Gospel Tour. wherever you may be, stay tuned for dynamic, trustworthy speakers, brought straight to your home, office, small group, or church community via simulcasts. Don’t forget to check out our huge online library for your favorite speakers, teachers, and authors, available anytime, anywhere you need them!

By |November 20th, 2013|Uncategorized|4 Comments