Hi Friends! Would you keep me in prayer? This Saturday I leave for Florida for the start of a 15 city stop mini-tour in support of my new radio single "God in Me". Five other artists and myself including Dove Award winner Jason Crabb will be leading worship and performing at churches, radio stations and some additional private events. Your prayers would be greatly appreciated! We would love to see you at one of the events if you live in the area! 5/26 10:30am Boca Raton FL The Journey Church (Allan alone) 5/26 7pm Destin FL Destin United Methodist 5/28 7pm Monroe LA - Christian Life Church 5/30 7am Fort Smith AR - Sweet Bay Coffee 5/31 7pm Cabot, AR - Renew Church
“God in Me” is the declaration prayer of my life. It is me saying, “God, You are able. You are faithful! You cannot fail at anything you start – and You have started in me. You are God in me.
2 Phil 2:13 “…for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.”
I am familiar with impossibilities in my own life. As a former drug addict, dropout, thief and loser, there was a time in my life when simply having a normal existence seemed impossible. As a child I accepted Christ as Savior, but in my early years, my family life spun out of control. There were multiple divorces by my parents and other circumstances that made my home life chaotic. During my teenage years, I began to run from God. After years of substance abuse, I ended up in multiple rehabs and eventually, jail. It was in the difficult circumstances of pain and failure that I asked God to put the pieces of my broken life back together. And He did!
That was 12 years ago. In my life, God has shown himself over and over to be the God who is not only able to help, but the God who is willing to help. He can and will do exceedingly above all we can ask think or imagine. He is the Faithful One, and His faithfulness is not dependent upon ours. Because of His goodness and His faithfulness, He picked me out of the gutter and gave me a new life! While my situation seemed impossible, I have learned that God is completely able to save and restore those who come to Him! This is a powerful message for the ones who have walked away from God or for those who have never known Him. 2 Tim 2:13 states, “if we are faithless, he remains faithful—for he cannot deny himself.” He is certainly able to save you and redeem the pieces of your broken life.
Col 1:27 “…which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.”
After I had walked with God for a while, I began to think that I could mess things up because of my inability to get it right. I felt that the weight of my salvation and earning God’s approval was resting on me. I was so tired! I knew that it was His grace that brought me into salvation; after all, I of all people did not deserve it! What I did not realize was that it was His grace through which I was kept and sustained. When I learned that Jesus had permanently earned God’s smile upon my behalf, it changed my life forever.
Our salvation and hope is meant to rest on Him and His finished work! Colossians 2:6 says, “Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him.” We walk out our relationship with God the same way that we received Him: not by earning and deserving his goodness, but by trusting that He is the God that is able. He brought us in and He will see us through.
Phil 1:6 “…being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”
Faith is key. Faith in Him and His ability to get the job done in our life. Faith that the cross was enough to pay for all of our sin and failures. Faith that God—who IS victory, who IS strength, who IS success— lives in us! He cannot fail at anything He begins, and He began in us! He will complete the work He started in us, for us and through us. This is the message to my struggling brothers and sisters: hold on. Continue to believe Him in your circumstances. Where things are impossible for you, they are possible for Him. He will not fail in you. He will not fail with you. He can’t. God can’t fail.
This is the core message I am sharing through my song, “God In Me,” and with my life. He is God and He is inside of you. Everything that God is you have because you have Him! He is Christ in you. He is God in you. He is God for you...and God will never fail.
Eph 3:20-21 “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever!”
Former drug addict, dropout, thief and loser Allan Scott found hope in his jail cell, calling on God to heal the broken pieces of his life. Twelve years later, this redeemed singer, songwriter and worship leader shares his experience in song, declaring the prayer of his life in the redemptive, hopeful “God In Me” single releasing May 4 at iTunes® and other digital retail outlets. Produced by hit maker Ed Cash (Chris Tomlin, TobyMac, Nichole Nordeman), the compelling new anthem from Scott is meant to lift his struggling brothers and sisters; an encouragement to hold on in the midst of troubling circumstances. Having known the pain of multiple divorces, substance abuse, homelessness and loss of personal freedom through incarceration, Scott found that the goodness of God can restore all from hopelessness.
“He can and will do exceedingly above all we can ask, think or imagine,” shares Scott. “He picked me out of the gutter and gave me a new life. It was because of His goodness and His faithfulness! My situation seemed impossible. In my own life I have learned that God is faithful and completely able to save and restore those who come to Him! This is a powerful message for the ones who have walked away from God or for those who have never known Him. Come to Him. He is faithful. 2 Tim 2:13 states, ‘if we are faithless, he remains faithful—for he cannot deny himself.’ He is certainly able to save you and redeem the pieces of your broken life.”
When I was lost / In the ocean of my sin You were faithful to me then / Now I am found Favored and made clean / You will not fail in me (From “God In Me”)
Myanmar is a country on the other side of the planet, literally (about a 12 hour time zone difference)! It is a primarily buddhist country sandwiched in between China and India. It is a very undeveloped country and poverty is everywhere you look. Christianity is legal there, but Christians become a part of the Persecuted Church. During my visit, I met brothers and sisters who had lost great things for their faith in Christ. Becoming a Christian in Myanmar may mean the destruction of your property or even death.
During my stay there, I led worship and preached for three days at an annual Bible conference in Yangon, the former capital city. I also spent some time hanging out with some of the children at an orphanage run by Myanmar Agape Ministries. The week that I was there ended with a graduation ceremony for students attending International Calvary Theological Seminary. I had the privilege and honor of performing and leading worship at the graduation ceremonies.
Myanmar Agape Ministries is currently housing many orphans from all over the country. These orphans are given food, shelter, clothing and are exposed to the Word of God on a daily basis. Many of these children will go on to become ministers to their families and to their country. The first thing that I noticed when I arrived at the orphanage was how the children immediately clung to you. They absolutely did not want to let you go. I knew that many of them had been abandoned by their parents. We stayed and gave them as much love as we could.
One of the powerful spiritual truths that struck me while I was there: that as believers, we have not received the spirit of an orphan, but we have received the spirit of permanent adoption. God will never abandon us because of our failing. He has made us permanent sons and daughters. This reality causes us to be able to move about freely in life, able to take risks and be confident that we are securely God’s children. He will NEVER disown us. Jesus was already disowned in our place on the cross. We were freely given credit for His perfect obedience. We are permanently favored and blessed children of God. Understanding this reality changes the way we act: we act not as orphans, but as children of the king!
I had the privilege of leading worship and sharing the wonderful Gospel of Grace at the 6th Annual Bible Conference. There were buddhists in attendance and it was an honor to share the love of Christ with them. I love sharing the fact that we have been made completely clean (Heb 10:14) by what was accomplished on the cross!
Toward the end of my time there, I had the opportunity of leading worship at a graduation ceremony for students graduating from International Calvary Theological Seminary. Many of these students will be sent deep into Myanmar, preaching the gospel. Many will be persecuted for their faith. It was such a great honor to spend time with them and take part in the ceremony.
If you would like to learn more about Myanmar Agape Ministries and ICTS please visit http://www.praymyanmar.org
Have you ever felt that if you sinned or if you were not walking in high level obedience that you were going to fall out of God’s favor? Ever found yourself thinking, “I am going to have to get passed this (sin, habit, etc) or start to do this certain spiritual discipline in order for God to use me”? I have! I believed that God’s relationship with me was completely dependant upon myself and my actions. Since I was never walking in complete obedience (are you?), I could never really expect blessing from God. Sometimes though, I would fast or do something I thought God would be pleased with. At that point I would have confidence to expect blessing and favor from Him. No matter which end of the spectrum that I was on, my walk with God ended up feeling like a rollercoaster more than anything else. I was never able to live up to the “standard of perfection” I thought was required. Ever felt that way? Then I learned something that changed my life forever. Check out a definition of the word justify:
“to declare INNOCENT or GUILTLESS; absolve; acquit, to show to be just or right."
Now take a spin through these verses from Isaiah 53:
But he was pierced for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.
Yet it was the Lord’s will to crush him (Jesus) and cause him to suffer.....by his knowledge my righteous servant (Jesus) will justify many (us), and he will bear their iniquities.
Friends, if your faith is in Christ you have been “justified” in God's eyes: declared innocent and guiltless! Jesus obeyed God the Father completely while on earth. On the cross He freely took credit for your guilt. He then transferred credit for His perfect obedience into your account making you forever blessable and perfect in the Fathers eyes. Then, God executed justice on His perfect Son by crushing and cursing Him with one of the most inhumane and painful death sentences known to humanity. Jesus received what you deserved and now you will forever receive what HE deserves-absolute blessing and favor for His absolute obedience and perfection!
Because of the cross, God will never break fellowship with you, punish you or curse you because of your sin - because He punished, cursed and broke fellowship with Jesus on the cross (“Father, Father, why have you forsaken me?”). Because your sins were already disowned on the cross in Jesus, you never will be!
And the best part- you are innocent and guiltless FOREVER! Check this out:
14 For by a single offering He (JESUS) has forever completely cleansed and perfected those who are consecrated and made holy (YOU).
My friend- if your faith is in Christ- God has justified you. He has made you completely innocent and blameless FOREVER! Not on the basis of your performance. On the basis of Jesus and HIS PERFORMANCE. It is so good to know that God is forever blessing, loving and favoring you because of the perfection of Jesus!
I am so excited to announce 17 tour dates along the east coast with Integrity Music worship leader/recording artist Paul Baloche, Saddleback Churches Travis Ryan and recording artist Haley Morgan-Smith! Check out the tour page for details....
In 2008 I was going through one of the more challenging times in my walk with God. Things seemed messy. I was really struggling with the direction of my life. Most of all, I was worn out spiritually. You see, for most of my Christian walk, I had spent my time thinking that God was relating to me on the basis of my performance. “Had I tithed enough?”, “Had my motives been right?” or “Had I done the right thing in this situation?” I was constantly living in a state of self-analysis. I was convinced that God would only hear my prayers or send blessings my way if I was meeting a certain standard of living. So, I would go a week feeling pretty good about myself and my walk with God, and then I would do something that would mess it all up. I would then feel terrible for a few days. It was up and down, back and forth in the way I felt God was relating to me. I now call this “bi-polar Christianity”! During the winter of 2008 God brought someone into my life that began to teach me a truth that would forever revolutionize my understanding of God and His grace:
In the Old Testament the priests of the day would offer sacrifices on behalf of the people to “cover” or atone for their sins. They would have to offer the same sacrifices year after year because they (the sacrifices) did not have the power to take away the peoples sins. So every year, the people were reminded of their sins again and again.
Hebrews 10:1-3…it (the law) can never, by the same sacrifices repeated endlessly year after year, make perfect those who draw near to worship. 2 Otherwise, would they (sacrifices) not have stopped being offered? For the worshipers would have been cleansed once for all, and would no longer have felt guilty for their sins. 3 But those sacrifices are an annual reminder of sins. 4 It is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins.
The work of those priests was never finished. They had to offer sacrifices over and over again- because their sacrifices could never purify the people! There was actually no seat in the temple for the priests to sit down and rest in because their job was never finished! But Jesus, our perfect High Priest, offered himself as a perfect sacrifice, said “It is Finished” and then SAT DOWN (position of rest) at the right hand of the Father! What was different about His sacrifice?
14 For by a single offering He (Jesus) has forever completely cleansed and perfected those who ARE consecrated and made holy (we are consecrated or “set apart” and “made holy” by His sacrifice, not by our doing).
Jesus was the perfect sacrifice- sinless. He lived the perfect life and fully deserved all of the blessings of a perfect person: un-broken fellowship with God and permanent favor in the Fathers eyes. 2 Corinthians 5:21 states that on the cross, Jesus took credit for EVERY sin that we would ever commit- and gave us credit for His absolute obedience (the gift of His righteousness)! He didn’t just die for our past sins, He died for all of them- ALL OF THEM WERE IN THE FUTURE WHEN JESUS DIED (at least I have not met a 2000 year old person yet haha!). As Hebrews 10:14 states, He FOREVER COMPLETLEY CLEANSED AND PERFECTED those who have put their faith in Him! Strong language! Friend, please know that if you have placed your faith in Christ and His perfect sacrifice- you have been forever and completely cleansed. Jesus was condemned and made guilty in your place. You have received credit for his absolute obedience. Your walk with God is no longer dependent upon your obedience or disobedience, fasting or tithing- it is dependent upon the finished work of the cross. The ONCE FOR ALL PEREFECT SACRIFICE! It has made you Blameless and Free! When you feel dirty, remember that you are squeaky clean: BLAMELESS! Not because of your performance but because of the perfect performance and sacrifice of Jesus: perfect performance, perfect sacrifice, perfect saving- He has made you perfectly clean! This truth rocked my life. I pray that it resonates with you as well!