Archive for Victory Outreach Oxnard

IN THE GREEN ROOM WITH “NICK VUJICIC”

Posted in Church Growth, Church Life, Inner city, Leadership, Life Without Limits, Nick Vujucic, Preaching, Uncategorized, Urban Ministry, victory outreach, Victory Outreach International, Victory Outreach Oxnard with tags , , , , on November 7, 2011 by pastorferniefranco

Waiting outside the door…

As I waited at the front door of my green room for Nick Vujicic to arrive on our premises, I paced back and forth as it would be our meet for the very first time, I WAS REALLY NERVOUS! Our service was scheduled to begin at 7:30p.m. and the crowds started lining up outside at 4:30p.m. on a Friday! I had seen Nicks’ inspirational video messages on the internet and on multiple Televison Networks that he had filmed from Africa – India – America and other parts of the world. But, I had never met NICK in person, face to face!

One of my staff members gives me the motion and says; “Nick just pulled up!” (I am REALLY nervous now!) I look over my left shoulder and see his Cadillac Escalade pull up at the parking spot that leads straight back to the Green Room. I peek on the status of the completion on his parking condition. The car’s engine is turned off by now and I see Nick’s head being lowered from the back of the Escalade. I felt like ‘OH MY GOD”, Nick is actually here. I mean here at Victory Outreach Oxnard!

What many people don’t understand is that I had been trying to get Nick to my church for 3 years and Nick only lives 30 minutes away from my house. Nick was finally here – YES!

In the Green Room…

Nick is the first one off his vehicle and the first one in the green room. After his sound check we sit down across the dinner table and begin talking as if we knew each other for the past 10 years. Nick has a gifting about him that knows how to take away somebody’s shaking nerves in an instant!
After Nick’s speaking engagement that night, (Which by the way, we had an enormous projected video feed on screen outdoors in a heated section of our parking lot because the crowds were too big) we find ourselves back in the green room talking away over a freshly opened grilled “Ribeye” steak made by one of our Victory Outreach Chefs. It didn’t take no more than 3 minutes for me to have to second look if I was having dinner with a man that was born without limbs! Only if you were looking up and down you would realize that he had no limbs, but his behavior, actions, confidence and JOY said that he had MORE limbs than anyone else in that room that night. He begin to tell me about his family history and up-bringing as a child. It was as if I was having an actual “live” audio book read to me from his book “Life Without Limbs” by the actual author himself in person! It can’t any get better than that! Nick has a personality that is so humorous and is also good about laughing at other people’s jokes too! I never met such a great encourager like Nick, but I must say that he is one extra-ordinary VISIONARY! He begin to tell me about a vision that he has to purchase a mega-tent that he can travel with to host revivals in! I saw personally how Nick really does have a heart for people. He has a heart for souls, he has GOD’S HEART! He began telling me that he holds the “Guinness World Record” for giving the most hugs to people in one hour. He is a humble man. Nick has preached in over 54 other countries worldwide and is taking the time to preach to his backyard (Ventura, County). He has preached in Anaheim Angles Stadium, and to crowds that rank in the masses. I asked him WHY he accepted the invitation to Victory Outreach Oxnard. This is a man that has had to say no to over 30,000 invitations to speak becuase 24hrs in a day does not permit him to say yes to them all, because it’s humanly impossible. He pauses for a few seconds when I ask him why Oxnard? He answers me by saying; “Bill Bright (October 19, 1921 – July 19, 2003) Founder of Campus Crusade for Christ said; “There is going to be a Coming Revival in the Ventura County area in the end times”. I responded with my jaw dropped “Wow!”. I assumed that Nick is going to be part of that revival as is so Victory Outreach Oxnard. Nick’s ministry and Victory Outreach Oxnard will be partnering soon to do something “MEGA” in Ventura County!!!

I learned so much from Nick that evening, there is not enough time to type it out. I know one thing. the name of Nick’s Ministry has way more influence in my life than it ever did in the past! “LIFE WITHOUT LIMITS”. (So true!)

My family and I were able to meet Nick’s fiancee “Kanae” and have a great time with her and Nick’s team over dinner. I beleive Nick has found the right woman for his life. She is well aware of Nick’s vision and supports it 100% and is already with her hands to the plow in his great ministry.

(Signed with a writing marker in his mouth)

If you have not already purchased Nick’s Book “Life Without Limits”, get it as soon as possible. It will change your way of thinking!

Here is what I have already been able to pull out from his book.

“I can’t put a hand on your shoulder to reassure you, but I can speak from the heart” – Nick V.

“I’m officially DISABLED, but I’m truly ENABLED because my lack of limbs” – Nick V.

“If you feel frustrated right now, that’s okay. Your sense of frustration means you want more for life than you have right now”. – Nick V.

“My life is an adventure still being written and so is yours” – Nick V.

“At first I was not willing to confront that what was really wrong with me wasn’t my body, it was the limits I put on myself and my limited vision of the possibilities for my life”. – Nick V.


 

     

GOD HAS NO SHORTAGE OF RICHES IN HEAVEN

Posted in Church Growth, Church Life, Inner city, Leadership, Preaching, Urban Ministry, victory outreach with tags , , , , , , , , , , on February 13, 2011 by pastorferniefranco
(The following is an e-newsletter I recently sent out to people in my church who are believing God for payroll raises in 2011)
 

Philippians 4:19 “..and my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus”.
Pastor studio 1What we all did on Tuesday, February 2nd was not a joke! We placed on our tithing envelopes and declared by FAITH that we would get raises in 2011! I trust that your faith has not been DAMAGED but has been transformed to the DEFINITE

I’m already hearing of people getting jobs and raises. I have met people personally last weekend who’s names were placed on the “Great wall of Prayer”, and we have all heard the testimony of our Church Attorney Phil Dunn who has been cured of cancer. There is NO DOUBT that God is in a season of answering prayers at Victory Outreach Church of Oxnard.

What Philippians 4:19 says is that the RICHES are RESERVED for you! So start RAISING your level of EXPECTATION.

I received a phone call yesterday from Brother Ronald Maldonado telling me he got pre-approved for a loan to buy his house. I prophesied under God’s anointing that God said for him to buy a house and he walked into his future! God’s riches are reserved for God’s givers. Keep on giving keep on believing for a raise, it’s all yours! Throw open your arms. It’s time to receive the harvest you are earning through all your hard work and effort.

Hebrews 10:35 states; “Cast not away therefore your confidence, which hath great recompence of reward”. The phrase “recompense of reward” is from the greek word “misthapodosia”. The word “mistha” is the word MONEY, SALARY. However, when it it becomes the word “misthpodosia it doesn’t just refer to a payment, but to a REIMBURSEMENT or SETTLEMENT! It can be compared to the reparations to cover all that vanished due to war!

Hebrews 6:10 says; “For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour of love, which you have showed toward his name….” God is sure to remember it all! And He will see to it that you are fully REIMBURSED for everything you spent to accomplish the assignment He gave to you. He will make a SETTLEMENT with you for the past expenses that would make anyone want to rejoice!

GET READY, GET SET, G I V E!

Sincerely,

Pastor Fernie Franco

Victory Outreach Oxnard

“THE HIGH PRICE OF SHORT CUTS”

Posted in Church Growth, Church Launching, Church Life, Inner city, Leadership, Preaching, Urban Ministry, victory outreach with tags , , , , , , , , , on February 4, 2011 by pastorferniefranco

Quote = “The longest distance from here to there in God’s Kingdom is a “SHORT CUT”. *

TEXT: LUKE 12:13-21

The crowd numbered into the thousands, according to Luke, when someone from the crowd shouted to Jesus, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.”

It’s amazing how family fights over stuff, It seems to have never change from age to age.

In this passage, instead of refereeing a family feud, Jesus spins a story about personal greed.

It’s a story about a foolish farmer.

From it we discover some principles for a life that really matters.

 

WHEN BUILDING A LIFE THERE ARE SOME SHORT CUTS WE OUGHT TO AVOID:

I. LIFE IS MORE THAN SUCCESS.

  • I think most of us would like to make something of ourselves. There’s an urgency inside us to climb every mountain and follow every rainbow until we find our dream.
  • There’s nothing wrong with a dream or a hard working person!
  • As a matter of fact. Aggressive, self-starting people, who rise to new challenges are the kind of people I admire and enjoy being around. They never say never. They never wonder why. They never expect anybody else to do it for them. They roll up their sleeves and go to work. (Pastor Art)
  • The farmer in this story is clearly successful. “The ground of a certain rich man produced a good crop.”
  • Crops don’t get planted on their own, tended by themselves, or harvested without some help. He plowed the ground. He planted the seed. He chopped the weeds. He beat the weather to get it in the barn.
  • I like this guy! He doesn’t complain about his lot in life. He makes his lot in life productive.
  • The problem with success is that it is a moving target. If you don’t do better tomorrow than you did today you feel like a failure.
  • Quote = Many people spend their lives climbing the ladder of success only to come to the end and realize it was leaning against the wrong wall”.
  • After all, everything you’ve ever wanted will never be enough. Solomon, who achieved everything he set goal for himself, sadly says, “Vanity, vanity all is vanity.” (worthless)

(True Story)

In 1923, a group of the world’s most successful men met at Chicago’s Edgewater Beach Hotel. They included the president of the largest steel corporation in America, the greatest wheat speculator in the states, the president of the New York Stock Exchange, a member of the President’s cabinet, the smartest investor on Wall Street, the future director of the World Bank for International Settlements, and the head of the world’s largest monopoly.

Within seven years, Charles Schwab died in debt. Arthur Cutter died abroad in obscurity (unknown). Richard Whitney became insolvent (Unable to pay his debts). Albert Fall was pardoned from prison so he could die at home. Jesse Livermore, Leon Fraser, and Ivar Krueger all committed suicide. Life is more than success, for life is a moving target.

 

II. LIFE IS MORE THAN STUFF

  • The person that Jesus is telling us about had a lot of stuff, but stuff rots and rusts and molds and STUFF gets in the way.
  • (Not too long ago I preached a message titled: “Do you got the stuff?”)
  • Listen to his predicament. It is a familiar story. The man with a lot of stuff says; “What shall I do? I’ll tear down my barns and build bigger barns and there I will store all my grain and goods.”
  • He had a lot of stuff. So do we. You might not think you do, but you do (Get my sermon, “Do you got the stuff?:)
  • There is a bumper sticker around which says, “The one who dies with the most toys wins.”
  • The truth is the one who dies with the most toys, dies. That is the reality of life. George Carlin said, “The essence of life is trying to find a place to put all your stuff.” In a real way he is probably right though he was telling a joke. A close friend of mine owns mini-warehouses. Every time I see him I ask, “How’s business?” And with a big smile he says, “Business could never be better because America is full of stuff.”
  • We have 32,000 self-storage businesses nationwide containing 1.3 billion feet of rentable space. One hundred million storage containers are sold by Rubbermaid each year so that we have some place to store our stuff. In fact, in the Tennessean today you can read that professional organizers will come to your house for as much as $75.00 per hour and organize your stuff for you so you can have a place to store it in a convenient manner.
  • Life is more than your stuff. Life is more than your accomplishments. Life is more than your accumulation. Life is more than all the baggage you have, some of which you do not know what to do with. Life is more than what you have accumulated.

 

III. LIFE IS MORE THAN SECURITY

…Then I shall say to myself “You have plenty of good things laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink, and be merry”’ (Luke 12:19).

Since September 11, 2001, the world has been obsessed with security. We now have a whole department of the Federal government called Homeland Security. We stay engaged in a war that won’t go away trying to make the world safe.

Requests for elaborate home security systems have increased greatly in the last two years. You can’t board an airplane or attend a ballgame without being security conscious. If the purpose of Al Queda was to instill fear in America, they have succeeded.

Jesus said, “Fear not those who can kill the body, but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the one who can destroy both the body and soul in hell.” Life is more than being safe. Life is about faith, hope and love. It’s about the courage to carry on, the determination to hang in there when the going is rough and the enemy is real. There’s more to life than being secure.

 

IV. A LIFE THAT REALLY MATTERS IS A SOULFUL LIFE

But God said to him, “You fool. This very night your soul will be required of you. Then whose shall those things be which you have accumulated?” Jesus asked it another way, “What good is it for a man to gain the whole world, to forfeit his soul? Or what can a man give in exchange for his soul?” (Mark 8:36).

Soul is the real you; it’s the real me. Soul is what makes us do what we do. The Bible is clear. Guard your soul. Nourish your soul. Don’t sell your soul. In a culture that is rich in things and poor in soul, we need to hear these words.

Is it well with your soul? We expand our minds, improve our relational skills, tend to our psychological well-being, exercise to stay physically fit, but what are we doing to keep our souls in shape?

Mike Yaconelli, author and founder of youth specialties said, “Until a few months ago, I had no idea I’d lost my soul. In the busyness and clatter of my life, as I traveled all over the world serving God, I thought my soul was just fine. But it wasn’t. I spent hours every day doing God’s work, but not one second doing soul work. I was consumed by the external and oblivious to the internal. In the darkness of my soul, I was stumbling around bumping into the symptoms of my soul less-ness. I was busy, superficial, friendless, afraid, cynical, but I didn’t even know where all these negative parts of my life were coming from. Then I began to learn there is a difference between believing in Jesus and being with Jesus, talking to Jesus and letting Jesus talk to me, acquainted with God out there, but a stranger to the God in here. Slowly my soul was reawakened by a loving Father calling me by name. I found my soul again.” A life that really matters is a soulful life.

 

V. A LIFE THAT REALLY MATTERS IS A SAVED LIFE

Salvation is to know that someone beyond us must do for us what we cannot do for ourselves. “Zaccheus was a wee little man. A wee little man was he. He climbed up in the sycamore tree for the Lord he wanted to see.” Did you ever wonder what heart hunger caused this chief tax collector to go to such extremes to see Jesus? It was not for gain or worldly pleasure. He had all these. Zaccheus was not only a tax collector, he was a chief tax collector. When the world has given all its pleasures and you have more plaques than will fit on your walls, there remains a hunger in the heart that God alone can satisfy.

Jesus sees Zaccheus lurching there, a little man up a tree. He calls him down. He invites himself to lunch. Before dessert is served, Jesus says, “Today salvation has come to this house. For the Son of Man came to seek and save the lost.”

We have heard the joyful sound, Jesus saves, Jesus saves.

Spread the tidings all around, Jesus saves, Jesus saves.

Bear the news to every land, climb the steeps and cross the waves,

This our song of victory, Jesus saves, Jesus saves.

 

A life that really matters is a saved life. We need to be rescued from the miry clay of me, my, and I and have our feet planted on the solid rock of Jesus Christ.

 

VI. A LIFE THAT REALLY MATTERS IS A SIGNIFICIANT LIFE

In 1888, Alfred Nobel picked up a French newspaper and read his own obituary. His brother had died and by mistake, the newspaper printed Alfred’s obituary instead. In it, Alfred Nobel was remembered as the dynamite king, the merchant of death, a person who had amassed a great fortune out of explosives used extensively in wars. Alfred Nobel didn’t like what he read. He set out to make a better name for himself. He established among other things the Nobel Peace Prize, which today continues to honor persons around the world who have championed the cause of peace. Alfred Nobel moved from success to significance.

All of us have within our bodies a fatal disease. We have a terminal illness called death. As a current country song puts it, “It’s not what you take when you leave this world behind you. It’s what you leave behind you when you go.” Who shall deliver us from our foolish ways? Who will save us from ourselves? Where is the life you have lost in living? Why not a life that really matters?

The advice of Jesus is this: Don’t look for short cuts to God. The market is flooded with surefire, easy going formulas for a successful life that can be practiced in your spare time. Don’t fall for that stuff even though crowds of people do. The way to life, to God, is vigorous and requires total attention (Matthew 7:13-14). So go for it. Don’t live a foolish life. Go for a faithful life. We don’t need bigger barns and bigger houses. What we really need is a bigger life! So why not a life that really matters?

 

The Eight Leadership Secrets

Posted in Church Growth, Church Life, Inner city, Leadership, Urban Ministry with tags , , , , , , , , on April 4, 2010 by pastorferniefranco

THE 8 LEADERSHIP SECRETS

INTRODUCTION:

  • We are in the people business as leaders of HIS church.
  • The day we get tired of people is the day we LOST our vision.
  • No doubt Jesus could have given in to the temptation to doubt people’s motives. Yet, He maintained an upbeat attitude toward every person He met.
  • Jesus looked at people’s potential because He knew they were all made in the image of His heavenly Father.
  • Jesus’ love helped Him look for the best quality in people, regardless of their background.
  • Today’s lesson will help us discover how Jesus’ mindset will improve your relationships by choosing to look for the good in every person, every cause and every church.
  1. Jesus knew how to focus on people’s strengths rather than their weaknesses.
  • Jesus was a master at human psychology.
  • He knew that people are much more open to someone who sees their assets than their deficiencies.
  • When Jesus first saw Nathanael approaching He said about him, “Here is a true Israelite, in whom there is nothing false.” (John 1:47)

2. Jesus saw in people what they could become instead of what they were not.

  • Jesus said to the woman at the well, “If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water.”(John 4:10)
  • The Lord wanted everyone to reach maximum potential.
  • He longed for people to be filled with the fullness of His joy.

3) Jesus presumed that every person wanted real answers to their questions.

  • After the disciples participated in the feeding of the 5,000 they asked Jesus, “What must we do to do the works God requires?” Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.” (John 6:28,29)
  • The Lord knew that the disciples really wanted a straight answer that could guide them in their planning, attitudes and actions.

4) Jesus refused to harbor any grudges.

  • The Lord taught that people are poisoned by their own resentments, biases and hostilities. For this reason when Peter asked Jesus, “How many times should I forgive my brother – up to seven times?” Jesus said, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy times seven.” (In other words so many times one cannot even remember) (Matt. 18:21,22)
  • We as leaders need to ask the Lord for a supernatural help to forgive family, people in this church, close friends, or even those you are working with.
  • Unless we give our grievances over to the Lord they can act as a wedge between people and do considerable damage.

5) Jesus knew that some people will continue to harbor grudges against us, but we must still try to be reconciled with them.

  • Jesus said, “If your brother sins against you, go and show him his fault, just between the two of you…. If he will not listen, take one or two others along… if he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church and if he refuses to listen even to the church, treat him as a you would a pagan or a tax collector.” (Matt 18:15-17)
  • As long as we are willing to fulfill our responsibility of initiating reconciliation with an offender or an offended friend, we are exonerated from all faults.

6) Jesus gave generous compliments to people as a way of building up their self-esteem.

  • Jesus said, “Among those born of women there has not risen anyone greater than John the Baptist.” (Matt. 11:11)
  • Jesus wanted everyone to admire John the Baptist for his faith, courage and commitment to preparing a way for His ministry.
  • By publicly expressing commendation, affirmation and approval for others we are following in the steps of Jesus.

7) Jesus stood up for the disciples when they were being wrongly accused.

  • One day the Pharisees came to Jesus and said, “Look, Your disciples are doing what is unlawful on the Sabbath. (picking some heads of grain and eating them) Jesus said, “Haven’t you read what David did when he and his companions were hungry? He entered the house of God and he and his companions ate the consecrated bread – which was not lawful for them to do, but only for the priests….I desire mercy, not sacrifice. For the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath.” (Matt. 12:1-8)
  • The Lord had a firm but kind way of asserting His rights and the privileges bestowed on those who were His co-workers in the ministry.

8. Jesus’ great sermon on the mount began with the words, “Blessed are you”.

  • In Luke 6:17-20 “He went down with them and stood on a level place. A large crowd of his disciples was there and a great number of people from all over Judea, from Jerusalem, and from the coast of Tyre and Sidon, 18who had come to hear him and to be healed of their diseases. Those troubled by evil[a] spirits were cured, 19and the people all tried to touch him, because power was coming from him and healing them all. Looking at his disciples, he said: “Blessed are you who…”
  • The Lord knew that everyone has a hunger for supernatural blessings, benefits and empowerments.
  • Everyone in the crowd must have strained to hear every word Jesus spoke that day.
  • You will always win more people with goodness than with condemnation.
  • Put away any tendency you might have towards relying on the negatives and presume the best that each person can be in the Lord.
  • Ask God for the ability to presume the best in every situation, cause and circumstance. He will direct your path and teach you to see things that are invisible to most people.
  • LEARN TO BLESS YOUR FOLLOWERS!

BORN AGAIN IN 2010

Posted in Church Life with tags , , , , , on January 1, 2010 by pastorferniefranco

JOHN 3:1-3

For the last month this theme has been ringing in my ears and pounding at my heart. (BORN AGAIN IN 2010)

I believe that God has given this to me personally. But I refuse to keep it all to MYSELF!

What does that “Theme” translate into? – “To do all the things we used to do the year that we got saved”.

It was those basic things that we used to do that has gotten many of us this far!

NICHODEMUS

What is interesting about this man Nichodemus is that you don’t hear anything about him until after his BORN AGAIN experience.

Now, I am not preaching false doctrine and telling everyone here today that you need to get saved again and say the sinner’s prayer. I am saying that we need to GO BACK to our Born Again experienced days with God.

John 3:3

“No one can SEE the kingdom of God unless he is born again”…

I don’t know about you but I am tired of seeing MY KNGDOM, I want to see the KINGDOM OF GOD!

1.   NICHODEMUS WAS A PHARISEE.

During Jesus’ time there were three leading strict sects that ruled the Jews.

a.    Essenes

b.    Sadducees

c.    Pharisees

The Pharisees of them all were the most influential.

The name Pharisee means = “The Separated Ones”.

 The Pharisees..

a.    They were experts in interpreting scripture.

 Nicodemus was a leading Pharisee.

2.   NICHODEMUS WAS TIRED OF BEING BORED.

 The Pharisees would give an interpretation of scripture to the Scribes. The Scribes would write them and expect OTHERS to practice them. 

Nichodemus was tired of being bored and wanted some action in his religious experience! Have you ever felt this way in your walk? If so, you need a Pharisee Awakening. You need some action in 2010!

 John 3:2

“… we know you are a teacher who has come from God . For no one could perform the miraculous signs you are doing if God were not with him..”.

 Nichodemus wasn’t going to Jesus because he was trying to prove that Jesus was wrong in scripture. He was going because he was bored of the same old thing with his boring, religious, Pharisee life. – HE WANTED MORE!

Nichodemus decided that day that he should talk to Jesus alone and came to see Jesus under cover dark. Probably for fear of the comments form his colleagues if he would have went openly.

Nichodemus wanted to be part of the “Miraculous Side” of Jesus ministry!!

Jesus response to Nichodemus was…

John 3:3

“I tell you the truth no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again”.

Born again = Means (Born from “above”)

 

3.   NICHODEMUS SURRENDERD HIS WILL TO JESUS.

 

John 3:4

“How can a man be born again when he is old? Nichodemus asked. Surely he cannot enter his mother’s womb a second time to be born.

This scripture alone tells us HOW FAR AWAY this Pharisee had been from the spirit of God. 

Nichodemus’ mind was set on the things of this earth and not on the things from above”.

HAVE YOU LOST YOUR PASSION IN 2009? 

DID WE BECOME NICHODEMUS’ IN 2009?

 ARE WE TIRED OF A PHARISEE SPIRIT IN 2009?

Question?  – If someone threw a bucket of water on you would you sizzle with passion for God?

What is passion? (Definition of passion) 

Webster’s = Intense driving, or overmastering feeling or conviction.

Someone once said: “Man is so made that whenever anything fires his soul, impossibilities vanish.”

 Moses – Passion for the people of Israel.

 Nehemiah – Passion to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem.

 Paul – Passion to plant new churches

1. A Christian without passion is like a river without water.

2. Passion allows us to become what God has planned for us to become.

3. Passion helps us to reach the potential that God instilled in our lives.

4. Passion propels us toward greatness in life.

Passion creates change in others.

1.  Passion should make us stand out in the crowd.

2. Passion changes our attitude.

3. Passion changes our behavior.

4. Passion changes our relationships.

5. Passion is contagious!!!!!

6. Passion works like a magnet – some people will be drawn to you and others will be pushed away.

 In NICHODEMUS’ case; It drew him to Jesus that night!


4.   NICHODEMUS IS FOUND BEING USED BY GOD AFTER HIS BORN AGAIN ENCOUNTER.

 

1.    We find Nichodemus defending Jesus when some Pharisees were seeking to Condemn Jesus in John 7:50-51.

 JOHN 7:50-51 (Read it)

 2.    At Jesus death Nichodemus joined Joseph in taking away the body and preparing it for burial with expensive perfumes.

JOHN 19:38-42 (Read it)

“WHEN THE THRILL IS GONE” Oxnard, CA

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 29, 2009 by pastorferniefranco

The Drama “When the Thrill is Gone” has been one of the best outreach production I have ever seen live on stage. I must admit that from beginning to end the production was eccentric! From the leading role (Joey Alanis) to the extras (local church) was outstanding!

This production attracted and captivated all ages and all walks of life.  Thousands gathered in attendance that night and hundreds were saved!

 

 

The story line is as relevant as society could be today; from homosexuality to broken households, from gang affiliation to crystal meth. A brother and sister is raised in a family where the father would beat their mother. The brother is forced to run away from home after nearly murdering his father. He is compelled to take his younger sister with him and falls deeper and deeper in the club scene and the life of crystal meth. They have no option but to survive by living on the streets from house to house until finally they have no place to go. The brother finds out his best friend rapes his younger sister and attempts to kill him, however, the plan goes bad and …. (You got to book this drama to find out the rest).

The week of the drama we had over 245 return to our church services as a result of “When the Thrill is Gone” production.  The cast were very disciplined and professional as well as the production crew.

Today, we still have much fruit that has remained in the congregation from Ex-gang members, fashion models, and an OBGYN doctor. I highly recommend “When The Thrill Is Gone” to every leader who is trying to make a difference in their community!

YOU MIGHT BE A PREACHER IF… (Part II)

Posted in Preaching with tags , , , , , , , , , , on October 21, 2009 by pastorferniefranco

Months ago I posted a blog “You might be a preacher if…” Today, I would like to post part II to make you laugh again!

You might be a preacher if…

  1. You’ve ever dreamed you were preaching only to awaken and discover that you were.
  2. (You may be a mega church preacher if..) You’ve ever considered a drive-thru counseling center.
  3. You’ve ever asked for a clergy discount at a golf course.
  4. People leave while you’re talking.
  5. People sleep while you’re talking.
  6. You’d rather negotiate with a terrorist than pick up the offering.
  7. You’ve ever spoken for free and were worth every penny of it.
  8. You’ve ever been asked to lead the prayer at a High School football game.
  9. Taking a nap on Sunday afternoon is a spiritual experience.
  10. It’s Sunday, but MONDAY is coming.

Picture 1

“DON’T TAP OUT!”

Posted in Church Growth, Leadership with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on October 14, 2009 by pastorferniefranco

 

 

 

photo by getty images

 

 

TEXT: I CORINTHIANS 16:13 “Be on guard. Stand firm in the faith. Be courageous. Be strong”.

For those of you who have ever been in a boxing match you know it always begins with something that is called an adrenalin rush! The adrenalin usually last for a few seconds in the first round. If not careful, adrenalin can take all the stamina away from you. Often, this is the problem with a lot of BABY CHRISTIANS. – They talk real big in the beginning, then later on they are nowhere to be found!

 Often this is true for NEW LEADERS. The beginning is a honeymoon. They are just glad to be recognized in the ring, but have a difficult time lasting in the ring. Sooner than later, they are TAPPING OUT and don’t want to pay the price of getting knocked un conscious for a victory.

 This is what I know about Quitters!!! Everybody knows one, almost everyone has been hurt by one, but nobody wants to be one.

MEGA CHURCH LEADERS MUST RECOGNIZE IN THE OCTAGON OF CHURCH GROWTH

I.            Demand for vigilance. (To keep watch)

 

A. “Watch” – be awake, alert, constantly on guard, never sleepy or sluggish, never to let down one’s guard.

 

B. 1 Peter 5:8 “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walks about, seeking whom he may devour:”

 In the octogan a fighters worst nightmare is to fight sluggish.

 

C. When an army is on a campaign, the soldiers have to “bivouac.” This is, they spend the night in the open-air, and every one remains on guard.

 This is how the LEADER’S OF THE CHURCH ought to be. The night is setting in. Let the church BIVOUAC– Let every one become a watchman.

 

 II. Demand for steadfastness.

 

A. “Stand fast in the faith” – stand your ground, stand true.

2 Thessalonians 2:15

“Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle.”

 Quote – “Men who show themselves men are men who stand when everyone else has sat down”.

 1 Corinthians 15:58

“Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.”

 Quote – “If I falter, push me on. If I stumble, pick me up. If I retreat, shoot me”.

 

III. Demand for manliness.

 I Corinthians 16:13b

“…Be men of courage”

 A. Be courageous as real men, quit living like immature men.

 Ezekiel 22:30

“And I sought for a man among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before me for the land, that I should not destroy it: but I found none.”

 B. God is searching for men who will stand up as men – men of God!

 C. Leaders with the right prioroties.

 

1. God is first in their lives.

a. Matthew 6:33 “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.”

b. Malachi 1:6 “A son honors his father and a servant his master: if then I be a father, where is mine honor? And if I be a master, where is my fear?” saith the LORD of hosts…

2. Family is next to God 

a. Your wife should be the most important thing in your life next to God.

b. Love your children

3. The Church is in third place

Hebrews 10:25

“Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.”

4. Occupation

1 Timothy 5:8

“But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.”

 Your career is the means that God has given you to meet your needs.

 Your career should never run your lives.

 

(Illustration)

When Billy Crystal’s daughter turned 11, Billy was in New York filming a movie. He called her apologizing for his work schedule and said a package would be delivered soon. He then flew from NY to LA. Later that day when Lindsay opened the front door, a six-foot high carton greeted her and she began ripping it open on the spot. Dad was inside the carton. Billy said, “She hugged me for five minutes. It was unbelievable.” He went on to say, “I missed 25 birthdays with my dad. I’m not going to let that happen with my girls.”

5. Recreation

 Someone has said that one way to tell the difference between men and boys is the price of their toys.

 I’ve found personally that YOU NEED TO HAVE SOME SORT of recreation to balance out your life.

 Having recreation is the oxygen to living life to the fullest.

 

 

 

WHY DO LEADERS TAP OUT?

 

1.  They distant themselves from men stronger than them.

2.  They have an un-happy marriage.

3.  They give up on their dreams.

4.  They fall into temptation.

5.  They don’t realize if they lose one round it doesn’t mean they have lost the fight.

MOMENTUM

Posted in Church Growth, Leadership with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 6, 2009 by pastorferniefranco

Me & Vern 2The following is an article I would like to introduce to my readers concerning what I have learned about MOMENTUM. What I am about to share with you is from personal experience over the years of my priviledge of being in leadership. Please note that this is all personal experience nothing is taken from any other material.

WHAT I HAVE LEARNED ABOUT MOMENTUM:

 

1. MOMENTUM IS NOT BY ACCIDENT; IT IS SOUGHT OUT ON PURPOSE. 

Many people can look at a growing church or ministry and say “If I had what they had I would be able to do what they do”. The truth of that comment is; that leader didn’t start with what he has. Often, he started like everyone else – “With Nothing”. Even in my case of inheriting a church. I did start with people but there was no momentum. I needed to “look” on how I could CREATE momentum in my church! I just mentioned a key word called “Create”. This is where momentum begins. We as growing leaders always need to be on the lookout for creating. This is one of the first things GOD did in the beginning. In the beginning God “created” the heavens and the earth. A growing leader is always creating movements in his ministry. When things are not moving, they are dying. A lack of movement results in lots of moss. The creator in momentum are always the lead pastor or the main leader’s responsibility. It isn’t anybody elses job to create momentum in my church other than mine! As we will learn later on in this article that MOMENTUM IS CONTAGIOUS! But, it is YOUR job to be the one that initially creates the momentum. We must always remember that “Momentum is not by accident it is sought out on purpose”. So go ahead! get going, start creating. I can’t wait till you find it!

2. MOMENTUM IS TO BE TREASURED.

Once you’ve created momentum then you have found it. The next thing I am learning is how to keep momentum. Momentum has always been my best friend in building my church! Therefore, I had to learn to treat it as a best friend. If I want my friend to always be my friend I need to treasure it. When I am not treasuring the momentum, then that is when I start to lose it! Once I’ve lost it, it is always harder to start again. Imagine with me for a moment; “Do you remember when you were a child; trying to get going on the park’s swing by yourself?” It took a while to get moving quicker and quicker, higher and higher. But once you got the momentum going it wasn’t so hard to keep it going. All it took was to “keep feeding” the swing. When you stopped feeding the swing, you slowly lost the momentum. Then, you had to start the work all over again! Sometimes, when you lose the momentum on a frequent basis a leader gets discouraged with the hard work to start it again and will never get the momentum back. Remember, treasure the momentum. Momentum grows a ministry. “Keep feeding the swing!”

3. MOMENTUM IS CONTAGIOUS.

This is one of my favorite things about momentum! It is very contagious. The people closest to me will catch it and the people closest to them catch it, and you know the rest. “The beat goes on!” People are attracted to winners. Everyone wants to win and nobody wants to lose. Momentum always makes leaders look better than they really are. And no momentum makes a leader look worse than he really is. If the main leader can keep momentum going in his personal life 90% of the time, he will have a ministry full of ministries that operate on a full tank of momentum. When momentum has died in the church, it means it has died in the leader of that church.

In closing, those of you that have read this complete article have been attracted with the desire to get momentum or have been awakened not to let it slip from your leadership hands.

Pastor Fernie 

V.E.T.I. INTERVIEW

Posted in Church Growth, V.E.T.I., Victory Outreach International with tags , , , , , , , , , , on September 25, 2009 by pastorferniefranco

handsWorshipHands Lifted Last month, a few growing churches in Victory Outreach (Domestic) were invited by V.E.T.I. for a video interview. The topic; CHURCH GROWTH. Some of the pastors that were invited to this video interview were..

Pastor Al Valdez (Victory Outreach San Diego), Pastor Joe Cotinola (Victory Outreach Whittier), Pastor Robert Maes , and others. I would like to share the QUESTIONS that were asked to all of us. I pray that this can be helpful to many of you pastors and leaders. Here are the questions that were asked and the answers I gave for my church personally. Please note that we were given an alloted time during the interview so the following answers are in greater detail than the ones given in the interview.

#1 QUESTION: V.E.T.I. “In your opinion, what would you say was the single most important contributing aspect for the growth of your church?”

ANSWER: Pastor Fernie “I must admit. I inherited a congregation that I was able to mobilize. I didn’t start with nothing! Although some members left the church during the transition I still had people to work with. I must say that the most single important contributing factor would be more than just one but if I could have permission let me sum it up with three…  

1. “The sharing of influence”. On a professional sports team when a team wins a championship it is important to take notice that everyone gets a ring. Not only does the starting line up receive a championship ring, but the entire team gets one. Something I started immediately in the transition was something that I called “VICTORY SUNDAY’S”. I got this idea from a book I read entitled “The 21 irrefutable laws of leadership”. One of the leadership laws was “The Law of Victory”. In other words, celebrate victories with your followers. The more I brought the victories to the attention of the church, the more people wanted to be on my team. The bigger the team, the more positions you got to create! The more positions you create-the more influence is shared with the church.

2. Relevant preaching and atmosphere. In the book of Acts, one of the secrets to the mega growth of the church was that those who were visiting heard them speaking in their own language. This could be a good way of looking to the word relevance. It is important to understand that the  un-churched can view church as history. We have a job to stay relevant and current with the times when communicating the message of Jesus Christ! 
 

3. My wife. Last but not least, behind every growing pastor there is his wife! I learned immediately that my wife has a set of eyes that God gave her for the church too. It seems to be that the Pastor’s wife is very instrumental in Children’s Ministry and Women’s ministry. My wife is good at both of those but is more POWERFUL in budgeting and fundraising. Veronica is very creative and innovative and has brought tremendous growth to our church.

#2 QUESTION V.E.T.I. What resources (books, seminars, sermons, etc.) do you find helpful in developing an attitude for church growth?

ANSWER: Pastor Fernie I must say that this is a great question! When I inherited the church, one of  the first things I needed to become was a SELF LEARNER. The book that transformed my perspective on leadership would be: The 21 irrefutable laws of leadership. (The Law of Influence) is a chapter in the book that really helped me grow as a leader. We must remember that passionate leadership is contagious. I found out that you attract who you are. Leadership attracts leaders!

Other books and seminars that have helped me would be 1. Courages leadership, 2. Futuring, 3. Who’s holding your ladder,       4.  Thinking for a change 5. Quitting Church are just a few to name. I and my staff have been to numerous church growth seminars such as “Outreach Marketing” Seminar, “The Engaging Church” Seminar, “Connection Power Seminar”, “Church Growth Institute” just to name a few and personal one on one interviews with mega churches and their pastors.

#3 QUESTION: V.E.T.I. Has the use of technology (internet, media, social networks, etc.) contributed to your growth?

ANSWER: Pastor Fernie Yes! Yes! Yes! Today we live in what is called the EPIC generation. 

Expiriental
Participants
Image driven
Connected

You can see the word IMAGE DRIVEN in this EPIC generation. This generation are MEDIA fanatics! People seem to adapt to your church if you provide images, technology, etc. People stay connected to your church through the means of internet. Webcasting your church services seem to be popular with many growing churches today. This is one way for people in your congregation who are ill or possibly handicap to stay current with the flow of the church. People find your church through the means of internet (I suggest investing in ADWORDS by GOOGLE). People no longer are looking through the phone book for a church, they are using technology. People even pay their tithes through the internet. 

As far as social networking; I have involved myself with the Chief of Police Clergy Council and Networking with other pastors.

#4 QUESTION V.E.T.I. Can you comment on how VOI’s core ministries contribute to church growth?

ANSWER: Pastor Fernie Our church would have not grown an inch if we didn’t apply the core ministries of V.O.I. Investing in theses core ministries are the success to our church.  They are NON NEGOTIABLE. They are proven ministries that work. If you don’t know where to start your churches growth plan, I recommend that you focus, invest and strengthen every one of our core ministries in your local church for a start. You will be surprised!

#5 QUESTION V.E.T.I. In what ways do you engage the community surrounding your church?

ANSWER: Pastor Fernie We have many ways but probably one of the most effective ways would be the 10 evangelistic centers in 10 gang infested neighborhoods in our city and county. Therefore, we are ALWAYS in the gang members territory at all times. These centers consist of their own church buildings or recreation centers and conduct a gang outreach church service once a week and consistently evangelizing them on a weekly basis. This is one way our city knows that Victory Outreach is an Evangelistic Ministry!

#6 QUESTION  If you could state the single most influential church growth principle in a sentence what would it be?

ANSWER: Pastor Fernie Again, It’s hard to answer with just one answer. I’m going to have to put it this way. 

1. Plan ahead  2. work hard 3. celebrate victories and 4. NEVER GIVE UP on your vision! (Of course, PRAY!)

#7 QUESTION V.E.T.I.. If you had the chance to start all over again, what would you do different?

ANSWER: Pastor Fernie Lol! Wow… good question! I guess I would have been a little more patient with God, the people and with my vision. We still have a loooooonng way to go so I guess I still could have the same attitude.

I would like to thank Pastor Kevin Young and the V.E.T.I. team for considering Victory Outreach Oxnard as a church for this interview. It has been an honor and we are deeply humbled for the invitation for this interview.

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