One of the lesser known parts of I Am Second is our awesome parent organization, e3 Partners- an organization dedicated to sending everyday people into the world to share the story of Jesus. They make it easy to say “yes, I’ll go.” If you’re looking for a way to make a huge impact for Christ and have a blast doing it, come with I Am Second on an Expedition. It will truly change your life. Take a minute to watch this short film and find out just what an Expedition is.
Click this pic to watch the film!
Check out all the different trips and opportunities at www.iamsecond.com/expeditions. Grab your friends, pick a place, and GO!
How many times have I come to a point in my life where I just stopped? How often after learning something do I actually put it to use? I remember being in high school, particularly in physics. We would spend sections of class learning about formulas and facts, and within a few days, do a lab or a process that allowed us to not only solidify the knowledge, but also see its application in the real world. Earlier this week while at work, my boss and I had a casual conversation and we talked about not letting the stuff we learn in training, or school, or life in general to just go to waste. More importantly, we talked not only about simply using what we learn, but making good use of it. I’ve come to appreciate good conversations, because fairly often, they are a catalyst for great things.
What has occurred to me, in the remainder of this week, is that not only had I not set a direction for my skills and studies, but I haven’t been using them to their potential in the meantime. I have been waiting for some theorized completion, overlooking the fact that God doesn’t wait for us to become complete before He uses us, He makes us complete. Now what I don’t want to say is that we should all just stop learning, and start doing, but what I will say is that with learning, there must be doing. Just like back in high school physics, we learned just enough to be able to do something properly, then we applied it, tried it, and moved on to the next thing that was set in front of us. Life is the same way. Little children don’t learn about crawling, walking, running before taking a first step. It’s a progression, learn-apply, learn-apply. Why should we think our spiritual lives any different. What makes us think that when it comes to our relationship with God, that we must first learn how to run before we even take one step?
It is time for a change. It is time to take the metaphorical first step. Most importantly, it is time to stop sitting back, and time to start doing. For those of you who have been waiting to complete your learning before you begin doing what God is calling you to do, take the first step. For those of you who truly don’t struggle with that, be gracious and encouraging to those around you that do. Find ways to help one another not only discover what God has in store, but help one another find ways to use the gifts, knowledge, and experience God has given each of us.
-Patrick, I am Second intern
It’s still football season, so let’s talk about the obvious – no need to be obscure here. Outstanding in his field, Colt McCoy is a rock star. We have watched him perform unbelievable feats all year long on the field. On top of all that, it’s a bonus to us Christians that he is a Christian too. We get to call him “one of us.”
Along with Colt, we have some Heisman Trophy winners on our team: Sam Bradford, Mark Ingram, Tim Tebow. Other professional athletes – Jason Witten, Greg Ellis, Jason Terry, Josh Hamilton, Albert Pujols. And going old school, AC Green, Reggie White, David Robinson. What about all the actors and musicians? Besides the ones on our site, there are still so many more out there. All of them, outstanding in their field.
My guess is that they just didn’t “happen” upon their celebrity status. My guess is that in second grade, Jason Terry was standing on the block shooting jump shots trying his best to reach the basket. And by high school, David Robinson stood at that free throw line shooting 500 free throws a day. Do you think Jason Castro just woke up one day able to play the ukulele like a skilled professional?
How about I am Second? I’m going to just throw this one out there and say that I am Second is outstanding in its field of “website testimonies” and say its not like other websites either. Our video team, our IT department, our marketing group, our leadership…they didn’t just wake up one day as exceptional either.
Are you seeing something in common here?
I’ve realized that Jesus never settled for being mediocre either. A favorite verse of mine is Colossians 3:23, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men.”
Can you shoot free throws for the Lord? Of course.
Does Colt McCoy throw touchdowns for Jesus Christ? You bet.
Do we make video testimonies and launch small groups and encourage you to do the same all for the glory of the Kingdom? There is no question.
All of this to say, all of the people on our site have something in common besides being Second – they didn’t just wake up being Second.
Colt McCoy started as a young kid probably throwing five yards at a time, but today, he can throw touchdown passes. Christ isn’t asking you to be perfect today, but He is asking you to just work at it with all that you can, to pursue excellence in Christ and to do it for Him.
One of my favorite quotes that Colt says in his video is that he didn’t want to be remembered for his touchdowns or for what he did on the field, but for the way he lived his life and for his actions. And after this national championship game, what are we all talking about? Right. The way he stood up for Christ in his quote after the game. It’s almost like he knew what he would be called to do.
How are you going to pursue excellence for Christ today? What in your life can you do for the Kingdom? Personally, I’m going to make phone calls, send emails, write blogs, and file papers…for Him. For you never know what or whom He might use to reflect His glory.
Start right now. Go shoot your free throws. Basketball season is upon us.
After 16 years, this is what I have to show for my efforts.
The following excerpts come from my 16 year who wrote the follow for a school assignment. I have to admit, I’m glad she “get’s” what I am Second is all about. Now, the mission is to get the word out to those who have not met Jesus Christ. From my daughter, Elizabeth:
“When you think of a symbol, what comes to your mind? Is it the Nike Swoosh? Maybe it is the AT&T mobile networking globe? A symbol can be more than just a picture; it usually has a deeper meaning. Some symbols that are more that just a logo like the cross, the Ichthys, or a purity ring. These are recognizable symbols of a Christian lifestyle. A new symbol has emerged.
In December of 2008, the North Texas campaign of I Am Second was launched. The symbol of the I am Second campaign is a chair. The chair is where everything happens: the tears, the laughter, and the memories all unfold there. The meaning behind the campaign is to put God first, and if we are putting God first we become second, therefore getting the name, I Am Second.
They use relevant influences to capture the attention of people visiting the site. This is exactly what this generation needs, famous Christian figures giving testimony about how Christ changed their life! At the end of each video they give an invitation to accept Christ. The impact on the nation does not happen because of the chair. The impact from the stories inspire new believers to become second and existing believers into Kingdom action. Since I am Second is an evangelical tool to reach the lost and hurting, I think very highly of it! My family has gotten very involved with this campaign. In fact, my dad is getting ready to go into the full-time ministry with e3 Partners, the ministry behind the web site. It’s ironic, but it seems that everybody wants to go out of the country to share the gospel of Jesus Christ. My question is this: What about the people right here in our own back yard? Do they not need to know Jesus Christ just as much as others do? They do need to know. I honestly believe, that the impact that I am Second is having on people is amazing! Through this campaign thousands of people are coming to know Christ and they are being plugged into churches that can help them grow in God’s word.
My name is Elizabeth McElyea and I am second. Are you?”
Needless to say, I am proud of my daughter and more importantly I know there are thousands of others just like her. People all around the globe that are using the web site and materials to help fulfill the Great Commission; sharing the Good News of Jesus Christ and making disciples. You know, Jesus never made a distinction between domestic and foreign missions, we’re all instructed to reach the lost and share the Good News of Jesus Christ. Why not step out and join the revolution of “Second”?
-Andrew McElyea, I am Second Staff
That’s what we call her. “Hey intern! Can you grab this for me?” Ha! We’re always messing with her, though! Actually I just came from breakfast the I am Second intern, Miranda. She’ll be headed back to college today, and we’ll definitely miss her. I wanted to share with you some of the amazing things that God has been showing me through her life. These lessons can change the way you live and think.
EXAMINE THE WAY YOU LOOK AT PEOPLE. God has been working on both Miranda and me this summer in the way that we look at others. . “Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” Colossians 4:5-6. This has several applications. First, you should show love to everyone, because everyone is on a spiritual journey. It’s our duty to “spur one another on toward love and good deeds.” So whether the person is an atheist, or if they just came back from a mission trip, spur them on towards Christ. The second part of that is that all people are just people, so be careful not to judge. If they don’t know Christ yet, don’t be upset when they act like an unbeliever. How can we expect that person to act as though they know Christ when they don’t? It’s not our place to judge, just to show the love of Christ.
BE ONE MISSION EVERYWHERE. Where ever you are, whoever you’re with, whatever you’re doing, you can show the love of Christ. You don’t have to be overseas to tell people who He is. You don’t have to have tracts with you. You don’t have to know everything about the Bible. You just have to be willing to serve others and tell them about the love of Christ.
LIVE EVERY SINGLE DAY TO THE FULLEST. If all you had was today, would you be satisfied with the way you glorified Christ with your day? We went to a Switchfoot concert last night, and the weight of their lyrics was heavy on my heart. “I dare you to Move” “Gone” and “Meant to Live”. All encourage us to live life to the fullest: TODAY. “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” Matthew 6:34. Like the scripture I referenced in Colossians, “Make the most of every opportunity.” Don’t wait to tell your best friend what Christ has done in your life. You may only have today. Don’t wait to start serving those in need. You may only have today. Don’t wait to make amends with those you’ve hurt. You may only have today.
It’s been incredible to see her grow in these areas, and the way that she’s ready to take these concepts back to school with her. (Let me brag on her for a second) It’s been incredible to see the way that as she let’s God in, He is changing her heart to be more like His.
One more thing we talked about was encouraging others when you have learned something about Christ. So that’s what I’m trying to do here: sharing with you the way God’s been showing me how to live.
So my challenge is to show someone the love of Jesus TODAY and EVERY DAY from here on out. J
I have a really interesting job working for I am Second. When we first launched in December 2008, our team was quite a bit smaller than today, and if you would have asked me then what I do for I am Second, my answer would have been, “what do I not do?” Wow, those were the days. We were a hard-working team, trying to be a well-oiled machine, but really just begging the Holy Spirit to give us enough grace to get through each day. Each day was a miracle in itself and each day was absolutely beautiful – a smallish team in a section of our not so smallish office just waiting to see what God was going to do each day with I am Second.
Today is no different. Our team has grown, our roles have changed, but the miracles have not. I get the blessed opportunity to witness some of the most fun and the most random as I wear a few hats now.
Coordinating the volunteers is quite an adventure. EVERYONE just wants to do SOMETHING. But we don’t have places for EVERYONE here in our smallish office as noted before. I have been amazed at the willingness of people who just want to serve, want to love, want to do…to see the hands and the feet come together and serve sacrificially as the body is a beautiful thing. But let me tell you where there’s a place for you to volunteer. Where are you reading this? Your home? Starbucks? Library? Panera? Wherever you are, I bet it’s somewhere that someone else could be reading with you. As our volunteer coordinator, let me encourage you to invite someone to come talk about I am Second with you – we even have a little guide that you could follow. It’s pretty amazing – I even started a group in our office of I am Second staff. We like to put our money where our mouth is, and God has blown us away with the ways he likes to show up in our little get-togethers.
Ya know what else is part of my job? I get to see the behind-the-scenes of behind-the-scenes, and I am assistant to the I am Second Executive Director. As the one who does the managing, the scheduling, the phone calling, the emailing, the updating, the booking, the you-name-it for all of our boss over here at I am Second…it’s a blessing. From the top down, everyone who works here is prayerful and passionate, and it starts with our leadership, and I am so honored that we work with the best (“second” best…haha) leadership team around. From starting all of our meetings in prayer to praying over phone calls and emails before they go to celebrities, working at I am Second is a blessing because we have leaders who LIVE Second for us, and that’s where it starts. I watch it every day, and if we didn’t have that leadership, I don’t know where our team would be.
That’s just a day in my life…I love my job. From Executive Director to volunteers, I get to have a relationship with them all, and I can’t think of a better group of people who truly live up to their cause. My coworkers inspire me every day to check myself and make sure I am living Second – even the summer intern quickly reminds me when I’ve gotten out of line. It’s a beautiful place made up of people being elbows and hips and knees and ears and wrists and pinky toes and ankles and shins and noses and heads and feet and…well, you understand. It’s the body of Christ working together, and I’m just glad I can be a part of it.
I think I’ll be the pinky toe and keep everyone balanced. Isn’t that what they’re for?