Friday, August 29, 2014

Free Screening of “God’s Not Dead” TONIGHT

Free Screening of “God’s Not Dead” TONIGHT  

98.5 THE TRUTH presents “God’s Not Dead” as a part of our series of Free Friday Family Flix at Celebration Community Church TONIGHT at 7:05pm . God’s Not Dead, which has earned over $60 million at the box office portrays college freshman and devout Christian, Josh Wheaton (Shane Harper), finding his faith challenged on his first day of Philosophy class by the dogmatic and argumentative Professor Radisson (Kevin Sorbo). Radisson begins class by informing students that they will need to disavow, in writing, the existence of God on that first day, or face a failing grade. As other students in the class begin scribbling the words “God Is Dead” on pieces of paper as instructed, Josh find himself at a crossroads, having to choose between his faith and his future.  Josh refuses to deny God in front of his peers and finds himself challenged to defend his belief in God in a series of debates with the professor in front of the class who serve as judge and jury.
98.5 Station Manager Micah Dunn says “this film will affirm Christians in persevering in their faith when challenged, while also articulating a Biblical worldview to seekers and doubters. With music by Newsboys and cameo performances by Willie and Korie Robertson, this 113 minute PG rated film is great for the whole family. Plus there will be free pop and popcorn.”
Bring a friend with you,

Your pastor and partner in ministry,

 “Those who accepted his message were baptized”…Acts 2:41
Have YOU accepted Jesus’ message? …then it’s time to be baptized.
Special baptisms will take place following our 11:30am services this Sunday Aug.31st (Bring a swim suit, t-shirt, and towel.) We will meet in C3 parking lot at 12:45pm 

This Sunday is a fifth Sunday which means the food pantry, led by Daphne Brown will be collecting non perishable food donations. If this is something you would like to donate to, you can bring your non perishable food items to church. There will be tubs set up to place your items in and Daphne will make sure they get to the people who need them most!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Small things BIG difference

Small changes can have big effects; when small numbers of people start behaving differently, that behavior can ripple outward until a critical mass or "tipping point" is reached, changing the world. The tipping point is that magic moment when an idea, trend, or social behavior crosses a threshold, tips, and spreads like wildfire. Just as a single sick person can start an epidemic of the flu, so too can a small but precisely targeted push cause a fashion trend, the popularity of a new product, or a drop in the crime rate. This is the theory behind “The Tipping Point”, Malcolm Gladwell’s popular  bestseller that Debbie and I most recently read. This same  premise can be applied to our  own lives. Small changes in the way we think, speak and habitually act can have profound changes on the people and circumstances around us. 
Beginning This Sunday at all five of our Celebration and EDGE services Pastor Brant and I will begin a new series entitled, “Small Things/Big Difference” Be there as we look into the power of “one thing”.
Your pastor and partner in ministry,



THIS FRIDAY 7:05 pm FREE! Invite a Friend

Child Dedications This Sunday during all services. Contact to register. 

Accept the baptism challenge. Meet in the church parking lot at 12:45pm this Sunday.   

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

I Challenge You TWICE!

I Challenge You TWICE!

It seems that just about everyone I know is participating in the ALS Ice Bucket challenge. As of Tuesday, the ALS Association (ALSA) -- which fights Lou Gehrig’s disease by funding research, supporting people with the condition and fostering government partnerships -- had collected over 80 million dollars over a matter of weeks this summer from the viral social media campaign. It’s a particularly impressive figure considering that the organization collected $2.6 million in the same period last year, according to a statement released by the group. 
I and the rest of the C3 staff have been challenged by former worship arts director Kael Bloom whose father James is suffering with ALS. 
I will be accepting Kael’s challenge as we gather at the Haines Pond at 1pm this Sunday August 31st for our annual Baptism outing. (I figured as long as I was getting wet I should as they say get “two birds with one stone”)
I WANT TO MAKE TWO CHALLENGES. My first challenge goes out to all who are reading this who have not yet been baptized.  God’s word is clear that those who are believers should be baptized. 
 Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. Acts 2:38 
God’s people should be baptized not because a church requires it or even because a pastor challenges you to do it but because God commands it. My challenge to you is to be obedient to God by being baptized. If you would like to be baptized this Sunday contact and she will communicate to you what you are to do. 
My second challenge goes out to everyone who calls Celebration Community Church their home to accept my ice bucket challenge. I challenge you to meet me in the parking lot of C3 THIS SUNDAY at 1pm where we will car pool the 5 miles to the Haines Pond where we will witness many believers being baptized and then we will raise money and awareness for ALS. B.Y.O.B. (Bring Your Own Bucket)  I'll provide the ice. 
Do you accept my challenges? 
Your pastor and partner in ministry,


THIS FRIDAY 7:05 pm FREE! Invite a Friend

Child Dedications This Sunday during all services. Contact to register. 

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Build Your Life On The Solid Foundation

Residents of northern California are experiencing aftershocks after a magnitude 6.0 earthquake hit near Napa Valley Sunday, injuring at least 172 people and causing extensive damage, including fires sparked by burst gas lines. This was the largest tremor to rock the Bay Area since a magnitude 6.9 quake shook the area in 1989 twenty-five minutes before the start of Game 3 of the 1989 World Series between the San Francisco Giants and Oakland A's at San Francisco’s Candlestick Park.
Building anything on an unstable foundation is not wise. This is also true of our spiritual lives. Jesus taught His disciples this truth with an illustration: “Everyone who hears these sayings of mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand: and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall” Matthew 7:26-27.
The shifting morals of our present world can be confusing. We may be tempted to let culture or the opinions of society be the foundation for the decisions we make. But obeying the unwavering truth of God’s Word brings stability unavailable anywhere else. “Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock” v.24
Build your life on the solid foundation—Jesus Christ.

Your pastor and partner in ministry,

Information Night Tuesday 6:30pm
This is your chance to ask any questions you may have about the Celebrate Health. We will be discussing the vision, purpose and direction of the ministry.  

Invite a Friend

Monday, August 25, 2014

The Boys (and Girl) of Summer

The Boys (and Girl) of Summer

Every year about this time I along with millions of others watch on ESPN the Little League World Series. I played Little League baseball as a kid and dreamed of playing on the well manicured grass infield, with a fence and an on field announcer in Williamsport Pennsylvania like every boy who ever played the game. Mike Mussina, a former All Star pro pitcher who grew up in the Williamsport area said that every pro player in every major league locker room would be glued to the TV during the Little League World Series. This year Mo’Ne Davis, an honor roll,13-year-old 8th grader from Philadelphia became a TV phenomenon. Girls have been allowed to participate in the Little League World Series since 1974 and this year Mo’Ne led her team to the American division semi-finals with her amazing pitching process featuring a 70-mph fastball and great control of her pitches. She gives new meaning to the phrase “you throw like a girl”. She is the first Little Leaguer to be featured on the cover of Sports Illustrated magazine. Mo’Ne’s game Wednesday night against Las Vegas had a larger viewing audience than every major league telecast on ESPN besides the Home Run Derby the past seven years. 
Another inspiring story Chicago’s Jackie Robinson West who played played South Korea’s team for the World Series Championship with the Asian Pacific team winning. The inner city Chicago team was a member of the Little League Urban Initiative. Formed in 1999, it supports Little League in needy urban areas.  While the International news last week focused on the terrorist army ISIS and their gruesome beheadings in Iraq and National news went on endlessly about racial unrest in Ferguson MO. It was nice to focus on the sportsmanship and simple joy of a game so many of us played in simpler times. 
Your pastor and partner in ministry,

    Information Night Tuesday 6:30pm
This is your chance to ask any questions you may have about the Celebrate Health. We will be discussing the vision, purpose and direction of the ministry. Information also available on the upcoming Parish Nursing class. 

Friday, August 22, 2014

More than a Few Good Men

Last Sunday Pastor Brant Rice and I taught on the subject of being ”like” Jesus. We did not teach the syrupy Sunday School version of “gentle Jesus meek and mild” but rather portrayed Jesus as he really was. A rebel, a radical, a man’s man.
Some years ago after reading David Murrow’s book” Why Men Hate Going to Church”, I realized that most people assume that men are just less religious than women, but this is untrue. Other religions have little trouble attracting males. Jesus was a magnet to men. But today, few men are living for Christ, even as many are dying for Allah. Why do rival faiths inspire male allegiance, while ours breeds male indifference?” I think it is because most churches offer a safe, nurturing community, an oasis of stability and predictability. Studies show that women and seniors are the groups most likely to seek these things. Our comforting congregations provide women with what they long for, so naturally they show up in large numbers. 

On the other hand, men and young adults are drawn to risk, challenge and daring. While our official mission is one of adventure, the actual mission of most congregations is making people feel comfortable and safe – especially longtime members. BUT THAT IS NOT THE CASE AT C3!.

We regularly challenge men to strive to become better husbands and fathers, to combat addictions like pornography and work-a-holism, to serve through ministry and missions and to fellowship through small groups, and softball teams.  We are blessed to have hundreds of committed men who call C3 their church home.
THIS SATURDAY morning at 7:30am I challenge all the men reading this to attend Celebration’s Men’s Breakfast. You will enjoy good food, a group of really good guys who seek to know better and serve selflessly our GREAT GOD. Mike Howell will recap the latest C3 Men’s recent mission trip to Baxter Springs and Daron Jamison will teach a short lesson real men can relate to. 

I look forward to seeing all of you radical, rebellious, roughnecks this Saturday morning. 

Your pastor and partner in manly man ministry,

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Back to School Bash a BIG Hit

Students will go back to school with style because Hays Academy of Hair Design volunteered its services Tuesday night in an attempt to join together the higher-education facilities of Hays. Students at Fort Hays State University and North Central Kansas Technical College were given free haircuts, manicures, makeup application or eyebrow waxes. In conjunction with Celebration Community Church, the Ignite Band performed and Jeff Burnett, director of the college-aged ministry, spoke. This is the first year for the Back-to-School Bash for college students. "Our goal is to engage the three higher education learning facilities and hope relationships are formed," said Len Melvin, marketing director of the academy. "This will allow our students the opportunity to visit with other students. It's not too often all three (schools) are in the same place for any common reason." More than 25 HAHD students volunteered for the event.
"Our students like to give back," Melvin said. "They learn this is an industry where you can give back with your skills, and it costs nothing to do so. So our students are always very open and welcome to the opportunity to be involved in community events." Melvin attends Celebration and knew the church could pull a large crowd from the college ministry.
"That's a great group to be involved with," he said. "A lot of times students come here and don't have the means to plug into a church. This is a great way for them to get plugged in with the college-aged students."
Encounter, the college-aged ministry, averages 250 attendees each Wednesday night.
Well over 100 students lined up to receive the free services. Hot Dogs chips and drinks were also provided by Len & Summer Melvin and Eric & Danielle Markley the owners of the Academy.
(Thank you to Elizabeth Golden and the Hays Daily News for allowing me to repost their article for the majority of this blog). -PK

Wednesday, August 20, 2014


When the children of Israel reached the shore of the Red Sea and their Egyptian masters were riding hard on their heels to capture and re-enslave them, the situation looked bleak. But Moses told the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand still, and see the salvation of the LORD, which He will accomplish for you today” Exodus 14:13
Once we know that something is right according to God’s Word, our responsibility is to take our stand. When you stand firm for truth, your life will be a witness to your family, your friends, your neighbors, your workplace and even at one of the most difficult place to stand firm….at school. Middle School, High School and College campuses are wrought with peer pressure to follow the crowd even if they are headed in the direction of hell.   But Christ has not left us to do this alone. He has provided His own armor to protect us and to help us to stand. 

 “Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. … Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand” Ephesians 6:11,13.
It seems that the overarching idea in this passage is that the correct posture for those wearing the armor of God is to stand! 

I am so proud of Nick Eiden and his CrossCurrent Youth Ministry team who are taking a stand for what the Bible says is good and true. Likewise with Jeff Burnett and the Encounter leadership team who are standing tall on the Fort Hays campus with the message that God’s Not Dead (they showed that movie Monday  night to a packed crowd in the student union). Both groups kick off their Wednesday night programs tonight at C3. Pray that God will protect them and empower them as they begin this new semester.    

We all need to be reminded that with God all things are possible, including living a life without worldly conformity and compromise. Let us follow the example of our young people and resolve now by God’s grace to stand firm on the Rock and resist the waves of compromise whose aim is to sweep God’s children from the shores of salvation that Jesus died for. And always remember that when you take your stand, you do not stand alone. Christ and His church stand with you.

Your pastor and partner in ministry,

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

God's Not Dead

Last night on the FHSU campus following a back to school picnic Celebration’s College Ministry “Encounter” showed the movie “God’s Not Dead”.  I am so proud of them for doing so because there is a great need to   counterbalance the Anti-Christian sentiments on most college campuses. A study of faculty members at U.S. colleges and universities revealed that 84% support abortion rights, and 75% support extramarital cohabitation.  Fewer than 33% described themselves as regular churchgoers. 67% of faculty members either “strongly” or “somewhat” agree that homosexuality is as acceptable as heterosexuality. 

Church & Culture’s James Emory White says, “Some years ago when the Kansas Board of Education approved new science standards for teachers in public schools that questioned Charles Darwin’s teachings on evolution (merely allowing the idea of “intelligent design” to be discussed), the director of the National Center for Science Education responded, “Those kids are in for a big shock when they go to college, because they’re going to learn that what they had been taught by their teachers in high schools is a lot of rubbish”.     

Little wonder that cultural observers from Christian perspectives, such as the late Charles Colson, who before his death offered the following concern:  “With the ever-increasing number of college professors who use their classrooms to indoctrinate students, rather than educate them, the views expressed and the lack of viewpoint diversity is deeply disturbing.”

Please pray that the message in the movie and the truth of God’s word will flood over our campus and other college campuses throughout our nation to compensate for the indoctrination our young people are getting to turn away from the Bible, church and God Himself. GOD’S NOT DEAD. Let everyone you know hear that truth from you.

Your pastor and partner in ministry,

Monday, August 18, 2014

Deuteronomy 6

These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Deuteronomy 6:6-7 (NIV) 

The above passage provides the central theme of the book of Deuteronomy and sets a pattern that helps us relate the Word of God to our daily lives and our families.   We are to love God, think constantly about his commandments, teach his commandments to our children, and live each day by the guidelines in his Word.
At Celebration Community Church we take serious our role in helping in the process of the formation of  a child’s faith.

God emphasized the importance of parents’ teaching the Bible to their children. The church can only assist in this endeavor and cannot be used to escape from this responsibility. The Bible provides so many opportunities for object lessons and practical teaching that it would be a shame to study it only one day a week. Eternal truths are most effectively learned in the loving environment of a God-fearing home. As kids start their first full week of school let’s pray for Godly teachers to impart God’s eternal truths through their words, and actions.

Your pastor and partner in ministry,

Praise Report:

Last Saturday 750 people attended Kid-Fest with 150 kids receiving free haircuts. Thank you to The Melvin’s & Markleys and all the haircutters of Hays Academy of Hair Design and to DeLynn Rice and all the C3 volunteers who helped make the day the tremendous outreach that it was.

Thank You to Troy Thompson of Sara Lee Bakery and Freddy's Frozen Custard for their generous contributions to the kids fest.

Friday, August 15, 2014

The Importance of a College Ministry

This week my youngest son Taylor headed off to his senior year in college. He choose to go to a Christian College and I am so grateful that he did. I read recently in James Emery White’s Church & Culture that according to recent studies, almost half of all American college students will abandon their Christian faith during their undergraduate years. Isn’t that alarming? One Half.

The reason why? It would seem to be far more than simple rebellion against an upbringing, or honest intellectual exploration. It would seem the school environment itself is the culprit.

The Fuller Youth Institute found that almost a third of college students say their school of higher learning is not helpful in keeping or growing their faith.  Most universities would say that examining one’s faith in an intellectually stimulating environment such as a college or university should lead to a deeper understanding of the theological moorings of a childhood faith. But that’s not what is happening.
According to the research of political scientists Robert P. Putnam and David E. Campbell, “Young Americans are dropping out of religion at an alarming rate of five to six times the historical rate (30 to 40 percent have no religion today, verses 5 to 10 percent a generation ago).”

Another study found with each year of education, there is a 15% increase that the student will believe that there’s “truth in more than one religion” and believe in a “higher power” rather than a personal God.

This is why we are so committed to our college age ministry, Encounter. This week alone Dr. Jeff Burnett and his dedicated group of volunteers helped incoming freshman move in, are hosting two back to school barbeques, an event at Hays Academy of Hair Design , a free screening of “God’s Not Dead” after FHSU’s back to school picnic, and a kick off of HomeCookin’, a free home cooked meal for college kids that is provided by one of C3’s small groups every Sunday night. THERE IS NO OTHER COLLEGE MINISTRY I KNOW THAT SERVES AS SELFLESSLY AS ENCOUNTER!

So this week, as you pack up your son or daughter off to college, give them one last word of advice.  Not about binge drinking or safe sex, money management or proper nutrition. These are all well and good, to be sure. But give them  advise that is most important. Give them a word about the importance of keeping their grounded faith in the Lord and Savior of the world Jesus Christ. And tell them to seek out a church like C3 that will care for them like they are their own. 

Your pastor and partner in ministry,

(Just some of the Encounter Leadership team)
We still need a few volunteers to help with Saturdays’ KidFest. 
Contact DeLynn Rice if you can help.

Prayer Request: Our thoughts and prayers are with Lavon Weber who lost her 91 year old mother on Wednesday.   

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Back To School

The key to the success of our children’s education is the dedication and tireless efforts that our school teachers provide each day. Here in Hays we are blessed to have such innovative, eager, and dedicated educators. We offer praises to teachers who daily exhibit kindness, patience, love, integrity, goodness and selflessness in often overcrowded classrooms filled with students from ever increasing troubled families.

As we begin our second year of Victory Christian Academy here at Celebration Community Church we are so proud of our teachers Desty Cox and KateTillman and we want them to know how much we are grateful for their commitment. We cannot express the full extent of our gratitude to all of the teachers in our district appreciating all the ways that they are making a difference in our community.      

What we can do for them is to pray for them daily. A quote I read recently Teachers are like the candles, which consume themselves to brighten the lives of others. - Author Unknown

We still need some folks to help with the carnival games at this Saturday’s KID-Fest. We still need volunteers to run games at 9-11 and from 11-1. If you would like to volunteer to help please contact C3’s Children’s Director DeLynn Rice at
To register your kids for a free haircut call 785- 625-5483. Invite all of the families you know to come experience KID-Fest this Saturday from 9am-1pm.
Your pastor and partner in ministry,

Congratulations to Lori and Alan Austin on the birth of their first child Jacob Alan born on August 12th . Baby Alan  was  born prematurely at  5 lbs 6 oz and 18 ¼ in long at birth and will be in NICU for the next couple of days