the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith

pray for
ray franks
in france

Monday, March 29, 2010

Just a Mustard Seed

Jesus never said we must have perfect faith before we're major league members of the body. He said with faith the size of the tiny, little mustard seed we can move mountains.

Please pray for my prayer life. I've got faith in God's promises but need to be praying more for: spiritual discipline, something closer to pure motives for all things related to support raising, that through this amazing personal relationship with Jesus, God continues to teach me how to love and be loved, and to be useful as an instrument of His to glorify Him through word and deed. thanks

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Prayer Chain of 375

Last time I wrote about the facebook page "Pray for Ray Franks in France" and how pleased I was to have 270 members after just one week. Now we've added more than a hundred more folks in the last several days and not to stress sheer numbers but wow, this really is a potentially powerful prayer chain; all glory to God! I'm so very blessed to have a million amazing friends, really, and now the Lord's graciously allowing me to more deeply understand and feel His love and to make at least baby steps towards a more Christlike love for both God Almighty and my neighbor, striving for that.

Let love be be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil; cling to what is good. Romans 12.9

Monday, March 1, 2010

270 Person Prayer Chain!

My brother in Christ named Schaeffer put together a facebook page dedicated to "Pray for Ray Franks in France". It was posted just last week and 270 folks have already joined the group! Wow, what a platform for mobilizing prayer warriors and may it all glorify the Lord!!!

Maybe I need to a add some more content; pictures, music, video, SCRIPTURES, and I will. But, how wonderful even a simple facebook page can be; wonderful, potentially powerful digital communication (dare I say digital fellowship?) that can hopefully muster prayer warriors who will ask God to do great things. That is of course IF it is motivated by pure hearts (regenerated souls striving for Christ-like humility and love) who are truly united in Christ.

God's got me in full-time support raising mode and it's a big stretch; humbling, encouraging, exciting, sometimes a little bit frustrating, but always filled with strong reminders of who's in control and it definitely ain't me. And I pray: "may it all glorify Jesus Christ our Lord."

Friday, February 26, 2010

Persistence vs Pestering

Please pray with me that the Lord would be pleased to give clear discernment marking the line between persistence in contacting folks and pestering them with multiple phone calls and emails as I attempt to get in touch virtually everyone I've ever known. Support raising is going really well but it's hard to know where that line is between persistence and pestering. What a sanctifying process this is and it's becoming crystal clear that prayer not simply a good option but compulsory!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

All the Time, God is Good!

Even the mess many of us made of our own lives and in the lives of those we manipulated and hurt in our previous (before Christ) years, don't you know God can use even all of that former rebelliousness and turn it around (in Christ) to be a key to compassion. Just as Jesus picked blue collar guys to be his disciples 2,000 years ago, today He can use regular guys to reach out to broken, hurting guys. Lost guys need a friend they can relate to. After all let's not forget that we're all in the same boat; sinners desperately in need of a savior. We who have been redeemed by the blood of the lamb and sealed by the Holy Spirit must not neglect our hurting neighbors. They need a man who can understand their inner misery and share the truth. The Lord is teaching us how to love and be loved (through Christ) so let's go out there and apply the lessons of this sanctification process! Striving to really serve Jesus with closer to a pure motivation is so very much about the relationships and The personal relationship (with Christ).

Do you believe God causes all things to work together for good, to those who love Him and are called according to His purpose?

God is good all the time!

Do you believe that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love Him and are called according to His purpose? Even the mess we can make of our lives (especially our pre- redemption lives) is turned around for good by our sovereign God. I know that it's true!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Jesus said:

"Pray that you may not enter into temptation." And again, "Why are you sleeping? Rise and pray that you may not enter into temptation." Luke 22

He was speaking to the apostles the night of His betrayal but His question and admonition should resonate with all His followers here and now, shouldn't they?

Saturday, February 13, 2010


Three days ago it seemed highly unlikely that this brother would be able to play the piano tomorrow but... Praise the Lord! Prayers answered and the hand and wrist are almost completely fine, miraculously fine. Ice, aspirin and especially prayers seem to have worked/been answered amazingly, beautifully. Thank You Father, Jesus, Spirit, and the praying body of true believers!

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Pain Gets Our Attention

My right hand suddenly has no strength and there's a very severe pain in my wrist. Praise the Lord that He gets our attention real well through physical discomfort! Just as I start to get more and more confident in raising funds for 'my' ministry the Lord sends a screaming loud reminder of who's truly in control here. "Stay focused on Jesus who's seated at My right hand," God is yelling, "not on your mortal, fleshly, prideful, measurable achievements."

Did Christ not suffer? Isn't it an honor and a privilege to savor ALL the stuff God allows us to go through in these miraculous lives? Do we not really believe in God's sovereignty?

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

A Puritan Prayer of Love

Gracious Lord,

Thy name is love,
in love receive my prayer.
My sins are more than the wide sea's sand,
but where sin abounds,
there is grace more abundant.
Grant me more and more
to know thee in prayer as
the path in which my feet tread,
the latch upon the door of my lips,
the light that shines through my eyes,
the music of my ears,
the marrow of my understanding,
the strength of my will,
the power of my affection,
the sweetness of my memory.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Amazing (sanctifying) Grace!

Wow! The Lord is apparently pleased to allow missions minded folks to go through the wild ride known as support raising. God is whittling away at all the pride issues and now, in His perfect timing, this fund raising experience that was rather frightening to me is becoming more and more exciting everyday! All glory to Him who drew us to Him, opened our eyes to the truth, and softened our hearts sufficiently to have faith in Christ, that He's precisely who He claimed to be; the savior of the world!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

"I, Me, My..."

Don't you reckon the good Lord's pleased when we strive not to use the words "I, me, and my" too much? It's very difficult not to say them a lot. Try! ... pride?

We need to give all the glory to God no matter what.

We need to trust and obey the Word and strive to live more like Jesus lived. He loved people and manipulated things, not the other way around.

We need to constantly thank God that we've been saved by grace through faith in Christ alone.

And we also really need to go out there and build relationships, disciple & be discipled. Shine

Jesus teaches us how to truly live and love from a pure heart.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Fund Raising; Misery or Ministry?

To be honest with ya'll* I must confess that one year ago this brother was pretty much petrified at the prospect of "support raising"; the process of asking individuals to commit to monthly giving in order to fund a missionary/ministry. But totally by the grace of God that attitude has been turned around 180 degrees. It pleases the Lord to allow a fellow to go through this sanctifying process as Christ uses it to beautifully humble a guy, to strengthen him in the application of the Word, to instruct him on what it means to die to self.

How liberating do you think it is to even just begin to scratch the surface of understanding how to love the Lord and your neighbors more than satisfying one's own shallow desires? Do you want to live really radically? Are you interested in truth that will free you from the grips of worldly lies and manipulation? Wouldn't it be wonderful to simply let go of most of the worries of the world?
Have you reconsidered Jesus lately? Christ's convinced me that He's precisely who he claimed to be. All glory to God!

*Texas talk, lived here 18 yrs now!

Monday, February 1, 2010

Soon & Very Soon

We had a joyful time of worship yesterday at Grace Bible Church in Sanger,Texas. Opened with Andre Crouch's 'Soon and Very Soon' which rocked! The Lord allowed me to find a perfect lyric for Luke 21 which was to be sung to the melody of 'It Came Upon a Midnight Clear' but discovered it worked great with Fernando Ortega's 'Our Great God'; all glory to God. How amazing is our great, powerful, merciful, loving Lord!

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

French Pizza!

Did you know that Southeastern France was part of Italy until 150 years ago? In Nice there are great pizza places and Italian restaurants all over the place. And another interesting cultural thing that people sometimes gripe about (but I think it's really cool), is that most businesses close for a couple hours in the mid afternoon. They take the time to smell the roses over there.
I can hardly wait to be back there and make a thousand new friends! I'm serious.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Pride, the Biggie!

The main thing I got out of C.S. Lewis' great book 'Mere Christianity' is that pride is at the root of ALL our sin. I think about that a lot. Prideful behavior is marked by a condescending attitude of arrogance; a lack of humility right? But what about all of us who tend to be paralyzed by insecurities? By the grace of God I begin to clearly see that all my insecurities are rooted in pride issues. The guy who constantly beats himself up is no more about humility from a pure heart than the haughty guy is. The repulsively insecure person can't love their neighbor very well because they have a fear of man; an obsession over the approval of man. It becomes so tiresome to live as a slave to pride and more importantly it dishonors God.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

The truly international language

What a great blessing straight from God to be able to praise and worship Him through the gift of music! When I visited Nice last month I was really able to hit the ground running by joining in with the music ministry at both the church in St. Paul and the evening service in Nice. I have some great new French musician friends with whom I already feel a strong bond through both the musical connection (truly the international language) and through the strongest connection of all; fellow members of the body of Christ! It's absolutely amazing (miraculous) how the Lord can use even a regular guy like me.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

God is a gentleman

God is a gentleman in that He won't force Himself on anybody. I hope and pray to take a cue from Him and not sound too preachy, holier than thou, or like I have it all completely figured out because I most certainly don't. Who am I to think that I'm better than anyone. I'm not and if I ever come off that way please tell me about it in no uncertain terms. If you cross paths with someone who claims to have perfect complete knowledge, run!

I just want to strive to love anyone and everyone who crosses my path and to communicate (mainly through loving actions) to everyone I've ever known that beautiful, transformative change is possible in Christ.

Friday, January 15, 2010

the word's getting out!

This is starting to get really exciting! Things are coming together all by the Grace of God. On my own I'm pretty much just a terrified child. But with the Lord all things truly are possible. As I've been saying lately, this whole process of raising support, moving to France, being a missionary!!!?, it's nothing I could do or would do by leaning on my own understanding. This is all about supernatural love; God's love for us and the miracle of Him allowing us to learn how to love Jesus and serve Him by loving our fellow man. I believe that!
Sound unbelievable? Please humbly reconsider Jesus.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

"The goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith."

The apostle Paul to Timothy, his true child in the faith.
I Timothy 1:5
I'm truly blessed by my friend Clint who has a unique perspective on life, Christ, creativity, killer technical applications, and is an all around wonderful encourager to me and all who cross his path.

The gift of life is so beautifully rich and full of deep, Christ-like magic we can all enjoy if only we begin to get past all our fears and let go of all the heavy baggage that burdens us and keeps us from being more fully in Christ and Christ in us. And I believe we can make this kind of progress spiritually, emotionally, physically, only by dying to self and living for Him.

Does this sound corny to you? Please humbly reconsider.