Welcome to the 10th Anniversary Special
Edition of the From His Heart Newsletter: REAL
. We trust the insights below will be a blessing to you.
Scroll down to view the following articles in this edition or CLICK HERE to download this SPECIAL 10TH YEAR newsletter as a pdf.
- Remember This Single Truth in Tough Times
- Special 10th Anniversary Interview with Pastor Jeff
- From Debbie’s Heart - How You Can be Ready for the Trials that Hit
- A Note From Jeff
- Your Gifts at Work
Most kids at the day care led normal lives—but not Haley. She had some very big struggles. Her birth mother was a drug addict, causing her to be born with several disabilities—including the inability to speak.
Haley would often go into fits of rage. So the caretaker would take her into her office, sit with her in a rocking chair, and sing her the song “Jesus Loves Me.” It was almost a daily occurrence.
One day, the girl had an especially traumatic fit. So, as usual, the caretaker sat down with her in the rocking chair. But before she could begin to sing, the little girl looked up at her with tears in her eyes. She spoke her first words and said, “Sing about the man who loves me.”
In tough times, the love of Jesus makes all the difference. And nowhere is that love demonstrated more clearly than in His death on the cross. It was there that Jesus paid the penalty for every one of our sins—past, present, and future—so that we could inherit eternal life by grace through faith.
And there on that cross, Jesus had a single chapter of the Bible on His mind—a psalm, which He quoted as He hung there suffering. It’s Psalm 22, and it begins in verses 1 and 2 …
My God, my God, why have You forsaken me? Far from my deliverance are the words of my groaning. O my God, I cry by day, but You do not answer; and by night, but I have no rest..
It’s true, Jesus was abandoned for a time by God the Father on the cross. But it wasn’t because the Father didn’t love Him. It was because He had to be abandoned in order to receive God’s rightful wrath against sin.
But here’s something that’s really cool about this psalm. Look at verse 6 …
But I am a worm and not a man, a reproach of men and despised by the people.
Imagine for a minute the Son of God saying of Himself, “I am a worm.” People have said, “That just doesn’t sound right. Surely Jesus isn’t calling himself a maggot!”
Well, He’s actually not. The word that’s used here for “worm” is the Hebrew word Towl. It’s translated 8 times in the Bible as “worm,” and 35 times as “scarlet” or “crimson.” You see, in the world of invertebrates, there’s a creature known as the scarlet worm. The ancients used this little worm to produce scarlet dye. When the worm was crushed, it secreted a beautiful scarlet-colored substance suitable for dying cloth.
Do you know what’s really interesting about the scarlet worm? When the female is about to lay eggs, she climbs a tree, bores herself into it, and lays her eggs there. And when the eggs hatch, the scarlet worm dies affixed to the tree, and she releases that red, scarlet, crimson dye that stains both her body and the tree.
That is a vivid picture of God’s great love for you and me. Jesus is our scarlet worm who shed His blood to purchase our salvation. So in the ups and downs of life, remember those wonderful, reassuring words, “Jesus loves me, this I know. For the Bible tells me so.
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From His Heart is celebrating 10 years of life-transforming ministry this year. We recently sat down with Pastor Jeff to get his thoughts and reflections from the past 10 years, as well as his vision for the future. Here’s what he shared …
FHH: Pastor Jeff, what prompted you to begin From His Heart Ministries 10 years ago?
JS: I believe God led me to start From His Heart to help people see the Lord’s great heart of love and grace for them, regardless of how they may have messed up in life. Despite my many shortcomings, I believe God has gifted me to share His Word. He wants me to tell His story of salvation to the world through every form of media—radio, television, the Internet, and print. The Lord has been faithful to open doors for us to share this message, and we pray He will continue to do so!
FHH: Why did you name the ministry From His Heart? Does it mean anything special?
JS: In 1 Samuel 13:14, we read that David was “a man after [God’s] own heart.” When I was a young Christian, that concept captured me. I’ve prayed for years, “Lord, I want to be a man like David. I want to have a heart for You like he did.” People have asked me about the From His Heart name, “Whose heart are you talking about? Is this from your heart or God’s heart?” I say, “Yes. It’s from God’s heart through my heart to the hearts of those who will listen to the truth.”
FHH: What’s the greatest challenge facing Christianity today?
JS: The biggest challenge for God’s people is the same one that’s existed since the beginning of time: an attack on the Word of God. The very first thing that came out of the devil’s mouth when he spoke to Adam and Eve in Genesis 3:1 was to question God’s Word. And he is doing the same thing today, feverishly trying to erode people’s trust and confidence in the Book. But the Bible is the foundation for everything. It’s God’s love letter to His children. It’s milk, meat, and bread for our souls. It’s where we learn about God and His will for our lives. When we as a society get away from Scripture, we slide
down a slippery slope into destruction.
FHH: What’s your vision for From His Heart for the next 10 years?
JS: Since our beginning, we’ve been laying the foundation for a national and international media ministry that could bring God’s love and truth to people far and wide. We are ready to expand to reach into millions of more homes and hearts for the Kingdom. I want to be a light shining in a dark place to give people real hope that is found only in a genuine relationship with Jesus Christ.
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I recently read this quote: “Life is like a roller coaster. It has its ups and downs. But it’s your choice to scream or enjoy the ride.”
As a kid, I LOVED roller coasters. As an adult ... not so much. Jeff and I were on a roller coaster several years ago in San Antonio, Texas. There was an older couple in the very front seat ... hands up, smiling, screaming, having the time of their lives. Not us. We were both praying to just get off of it before we threw up. Twist, turns, ups, downs, lightning speed, slowing down ... all of these contributed to our dizziness and nausea.
Life can be like that, surprising us at times with how fast it goes, or how quickly our ups can come crashing down. One phone call can change our lives completely. I still vividly remember getting the phone call from my mom telling me that my dad had had a stroke and was being life-flighted to the hospital. In an instant, out of the blue, tragedy struck our family.
At that point, I didn’t have time to prepare. I had to draw on what I possessed at that moment. Instantly, the Holy Spirit brought promises from God’s Word into my heart to bring peace in the midst of this storm. I didn’t know what the outcome of this situation would be, but I had faith in my God who, based on His Word, I knew to be good ALL the time, to be in CONTROL of all things, and more than able to handle this situation.
One of my favorite worship songs is “The Rock Won’t Move” by Vertical Church. The lyrics say this: “When the ground beneath my feet gives way / And … / All my world is washing out to sea. / I’m hidden safe in the God who never moves / Holding fast to the promise of the truth / That You are holding tighter still to me. / The Rock won’t move and HIS WORD is strong. / The Rock won’t move and HIS LOVE can’t be undone.”
His Word IS strong ... but you have to KNOW it! You have to have it deep within you, immerse yourself in it so you can be ready when trials come. That’s been the focus of From His Heart for the past 10 years ... equipping you with the TRUTH of God’s WORD so you will be ready for this roller coaster ride of life. Back to Top
Life has a way of changing our perspective on things, doesn’t it? It redefines our lofty theories and know-it-all answers. And real life, if we’re honest, can be really hard.
I’ve counseled lots of people facing various problems over the years, and I give what I believe is solid, biblical advice. But I always add a caveat. I tell them, “What I’m telling you is the right thing to do, but it’s not the easy thing to do. And if I were in your shoes, I’d struggle doing it too.”
Life can be hard for every one of us—from the Billy Grahams all the way down to the Billy Bobs. And the Christian life can be especially challenging.
So what do you do when real life slaps you in the face? Where do you go when your whole world craters? When a loved one dies? When your company goes bankrupt? When difficult things happen, you need real faith for real life. Second-hand faith from your pastor or your parents just won’t cut it.
Now, sadly, a lot of people today opt for faith in faith rather than faith in God. They’re like the train in that old children’s book, The Little Engine That Could, as they face a hill and say, “I think I can. I think I can. I think I can.” That might be motivating, but it’s not faith in God. That is faith in me. And I’m very confident if it depends on me, I’m going to fail. God is the One who has the power to get over the hills of life, not me!
Real faith gets you through tough times. Real faith puts your pain in perspective. And real faith brings you back to the truth when the enemy tempts you with lies.
As you’ve read this special 10th Anniversary Edition of our ministry newsletter, I hope you’ve been encouraged about having real faith in tough times. I’m humbled as I think about how far God has brought us with your support … and where He wants to take us in the years ahead!
God has been so faithful over these past 10 years. And I can’t wait to see what He’ll do in the next chapter as we partner together. Thanks again, and God bless you!
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“I just want you to know how amazing your preaching is and how it has truly impacted my life. I was pregnant, depressed, and in the middle of nowhere. I found CSN and started listening to your teaching. Your teaching has
helped me and my family continue in the right direction!” — Terra, Idaho
“I just had to write and thank you for your stand on the truth in a loving but unwavering manner. It’s an example to the rest of us in a society that is getting darker and darker.” — Sarah, New York
“I just listened to your sermon, recommitted my life to Christ through the prayer you shared at the end of the sermon I watched online, and feel more ready to take every thought captive!”
— Bloise, United Kingdom
“I am in prison now and listen on CSN radio. Man, I can’t tell you how much I appreciate your stuff. It blesses me and helps me help others in this terrible place. God is with you and is with us too. Thank you, man.” — Jimmy, California
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