Thursday, January 24, 2013

Today’s question was about music style and differences between praise and worship.

Today’s question was about music style and differences between praise and worship.

     You are actually "kinda sorta" hinting around at two similar but separate fundamentals. They definitely overlap some but let's try them one at a time.
     #1 Praise versus worship. They are similar and they overlap as well. But try to look at it this way. Praise is giving credit for something that someone has DONE. Worship is giving credit for something that someone IS. Very close but different. Example: I can praise you for being a good guitarist or a fast runner. That is something that you have DONE. But you NEVER deserve worship because you ARE only human. God on the other hand deserves both praise and worship. I PRAISE you God for saving me, I PRAISE you God for healing me, I PRAISE you God for helping me. These are things He has DONE. But I also WORSHIP you God because you are God, you are Holy, you are loving and just. These are not things that He has DONE these are just things that He IS. So this is your difference between praise and worship. You praise your children. You do not worship your children. You praise AND worship God. As a matter of fact God can praise us to an extent by approving of us and blessing us but of course it is based on what we have DONE. Salvation is NOT merited but praise is. But GOD CANNOT WORSHIP! The bible speaks of two immutable things, and then it says it is impossible for God to lie. It seems to refer that the fact cannot be changed that there are two things that God cannot do. Lying implies of course that God cannot sin. But what is the other thing? I have always thought about it and the best I can come up with is this. God cannot sin and God cannot worship. To worship is TO BE IN AWE OF SOMETHING GREATER THAN YOURSELF. This is why we cannot worship each other because we have all sinned and come short of the glory of God and it is also why we can worship God, because we are in awe of how much greater He is than us, BUT God cannot be in awe of anything greater than Himself! No such thing exists.
     #2 Music styles. You seem to refer to a difference in music styles without ever really getting to the exact point. But you make enough of the right references that I think I see what you are trying to get out of this. There are a lot of terms being thrown around out there like, Gospel, Southern Gospel, Contemporary, Christian Rock, Old Time Hymns, etc etc. These are genres or styles and (watch me real close right here) these are not what I am all that concerned with. Of course, anything that leans toward a sound that has for decades been expressly used for the world and it's vices are going to end up causing a problem. But you must remember that ALL modern music came out of Christian Music. I know some people will question that but don't forget that the first song ever recorded in the history of the world was the song that Miriam and Moses sang about the horse and the rider being swallowed up after God shut the red sea passage when the Egyptians were chasing the Israelites etc. So if that was the FIRST song ever and all other songs sprang out of that then....well you see where I am going. So if all music morphed out of Christian music then it all has roots in Christian music so it all will have some ability to sound like something similar to Christian music at some version of it or another. Here is my point. I really don't care "doctrinally" so much what your music SOUNDS LIKE. I care what it SAYS. More importantly I care WHO IT'S ABOUT. Who it's about is how we decide if this is Christian music or secular music. It doesn't matter if it says Jesus, or God or Church or Heaven or anything else. It only matters who it's about and how it's about them. GOSPEL music is about GOD!!! Secular music is about ME! Example: If these are the words to a "christian song"; I want to go to heaven, I feel so much better when Jesus is around, I am having a hard day so I need to pray so that I can have strength.....THAT SONG IS ABOUT MMEEEEEEEE!!! I, me my, mine, us, ours, we, how I feel, what I think, what I like, what I get. That is not a GOSPEL song. That is a secular song by definition. When a song says something like; For the God on the mountain, is still God in the valley, when things go wrong, He'll make them right, and the God of the good times is still God in the bad times, the God of the day is still God in the night. Or if a song says; Oh I love that old cross, where the dearest and best for a world of lost sinners was slain.....these are songs about HHHHIIIIMMMMMMM!!!!!!!!!! That my friend is Gospel! Drums or no drums, electric or acoustic, slow, medium or fast....If it's about HIM then it is by definition, GOSPEL.
I personally like what is known as southern gospel, I even like stuff that is almost country gospel. I also like some modern black soul gospel. But THIS IS MY "PREFERENCE" NOT MY "BELIEFS"!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     Just for the fun of it let me show you another angle on this. In many of the old traditional Hymns whenever you and I were mentioned, we were mentioned in a negative light. Look at Amazing Grace where we are "a wretch like me" and "I once was lost" and "was blind". When we are mentioned in the old hymns, we are mentioned in a song that is ABOUT HIM and we are small, and sinners and wretched and, He reached WAY DOWN for me, "I was lost and UNDONE". BUT in these modern "secular christian songs", sometimes called contemporary christian music, WE ARE THE HEROS OF THE SONG. It's about our feelings and our strength and what WE CAN DO for God and His kingdom and OUR peace and OUR joy and so on. As if we are blessing God and doing Him this great favor by allowing Him to save us.
     So a true Gospel song by definition is about HIM not US and when we are mentioned we should be mentioned in the light of HIM which would DEMOTE us not PROMOTE us. And Praise is for something that someone has done but Worship is only reserved for something that someone IS! Thus only God can and should be worshipped and thus God starts Exodus chapter 20 with a long command and explanation of how we are to NEVER WORSHIP anyone or anything but Him.
Your humble servant,
Rev. D. Todd Sloggett

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

E-Mail question number 4 I believe

      I hate sin. Mainly because God hates it but also because it was so destructive to me and still is to so many others. I am against lust, pride, hatred, fornication and all sin. I am against all things that lead to these sins and promote these sins. Which as a general rule leads me to be the enemy of things like rock n roll and country and western music and immodest attire and hollywood, etc etc etc. Televisions don't sin. Movie reals don't sin, short skirts don't sin, guitars don't sin. Hollywood producers and actors sin, rock n roll and country n western singers sin, BUT, so do bankers and judges and grocery store managers and youth leaders and evangelists. We need to preach against and stand against SIN not THINGS. When I see someone wearing some of those things that you speak of I hardly even notice them. Seriously! I don't necessarily care about where people are as much as I care about where they are going. I know if I can get their heart right then God will get their life right. The only times I think twice about those things that you are naming is if someone was taught better, knew better, was living better and then went backwards. That bothers me A LOT. I know basically what you are asking. And the answer is yes. I believe in the traditional holiness outward standard. I got the real thing. I got it all and I haven't drifted backwards and I don't approve of those that do. But we have to regulate righteousness by the biblical standards of God. God has pure holiness in heaven. It has nothing to do with televisions, monitors, computers or none of the above. It has nothing to do with half, 3/4 or full length material. If has nothing to do with a western twang, a modern beat or a traditional rhythm. If has EVERYTHING to do with modesty, purity, righteousness. These are qualities of God and we need to receive them from Him. And no amount of doing or not doing things for Him will cause Him to give them to us. He is already trying to give them to us and if we will merely receive them from Him, then and only then will we be free from our bondage and we will DESIRE holy things and not unholy things and then neither you nor I or anyone else will have to keep this list of what we are and what we aren't against.
     Remember one important thing, in the modern sense of the word "sanctified": GOD IS NOT "SANCTIFIED".....HE IS HOLY!!!! We need to be sanctified holy. He IS holy. Sanctification is the process of us being set apart, separated and made ready to be used. He doesn't need that process, He never did. He is just HOLY. This being said, the idea that we are becoming "more Godly" by not going to movies, not wearing shorts and tank tops, etc. is not very accurate. We become more Godly by letting Him make us more Holy, which sanctifies us which causes us to desire and thus do less and less unGodly or unHoly things and even causes us to desire and do less things that appear or could lead to unGodly or unHoly things.
I hope this helps some more and answers this particular question too. God bless you my brother. Hope to hear from you again soon. Love and prayers.
Your humble servant,
Rev D. Todd Sloggett

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Yet another e-mail answered from the HMA desk!

Dear Brother,
     You live in an amazing time of the church.  Your question is very extensive and deep.  No body could possibly answer it in it's entirety but let me try to help you categorize a few things.
     First let me say that this question and many similar to it are asked over and over again everyday by people just like yourself.  This is not a sparse or sporadic thing, it is an epidemic.
     The good news is, if we get it right, we can literally change the world!!!
     Now I do not know you or your specific circumstance so let me also say that no matter what I say or how you take it, I will never, in any way approve of or try to convince someone to sin.  If my answers to you help you to go against the will of God then I assume that I have misunderstood the question or you have misunderstood my answer.
     All this being said, there is a HUGE swell taking place within the Pentecostal ranks of the Western Civilized churches.  You must try your best to put your personal situation within the context of history.  The church world as a whole has had several great awakening in the past and I believe that you are in the midst of another one.  Before the 1900's the true church for some reason had not had the "full blessing" of the infilling of the Holy Ghost and the maximum power thereof for quite a long time.  When God began to pour  such power out again it did the two primary things that power always does.  It empowered and it corrupted.  POWER NATURALLY EMPOWERS AND POWER NATURALLY CORRUPTS!
     It definitely empowered the pentecostals of America to do great exploits for the Lord.  It lead them to preach under greater anointing and live more sanctified and many other wonderful things.   But just like in all forms of human interaction there has been abuse.  There were shallow, lazy saints that just "preacher worshipped", "church worshipped" and "movement worshipped".  There were those that "learned" to be holiness well enough to be promoted to positions of authority and control.  Creating a comfort zone for themselves that they did not want disturbed.  Not even by Godly functions, such as outreach, helping the poor or admitting their own faults at times.
     So the movement that you came up in was incredibly amazing, very strong and quite Godly and righteous; as well as quite flawed.  These flaws are what we are dealing with today.  Hind sight of course is 20/20 but if these flaws would have been dealt with all along the way we would have a much more powerful and universally righteous movement today.  I of course am not saying that I think myself, you or anyone else could have necessarily have done any better but now that we know what we know, we definitely should do what we can.  The problem with fixing that which is broken is that the broken parts are intermingled with the unbroken parts and it is all part of a huge structure that is similar to the federal government in the sense that people have their little pet projects and pet preachers and pet standards and get the picture.  If you try to disassemble something that is wrong someone will undoubtedly point to something that is right that is propped up by that and tell you that you can't tear that bad thing down because look at the good things that will fall with it.  So we just go round and round the circle.
     This is where we have to look at the very powerful and influential Charismatics movement for a moment.  Charismatic are charismatics for a lot of reasons.  Some are because they saw how good the pentecostals had it and they tried to be like them but missed a few steps and ended up with a half baked cake.  Some charismatics are literally defiant to the word of God and are genuinely lazy and rebellious.  They want all the blessings with none of the effort.  To pick and choose and create their own doctrine.  The better it feels the more right they think they are.  But there is another group of charismatics out there that it appears your ex-pastor may have fallen into and you perhaps almost did to.  The group that got so focused in on what is wrong with the holiness pentecostals that they just eventually decided that they can't be right about anything.  A lot of these people were just very negative in their thinking, a lot of them were just hurt too bad to stay and many others were actually FORCED OUT by the holiness people themselves.
     The REAL answer to your question is this.  NOBODY is right all the time.  Not even the holiness people.  But will that be a good enough reason in eternity to leave.  I'm not talking about leaving a church or a fellowship or even a movement.  I'm talking about leaving bible truths.  A set of doctrines known to be right.  Peter and Paul did not get along very well it appears but they were spiritual enough and smart enough to let each other do the best ministry they could and let God build a church with what was accomplished.
     Somehow we have gotten to the place where if a handful of ministers from any given group don't see it the way that you have to either bow to them and submit to their ways over your ways, or, you have to move on and find some other group to be a part of and live totally different than them.  I don't know EVERYBODY in the charismatic groups but most of the ones that I know fall into one of two categories.  Either A) They started letting down a little here and a little there and they didn't really have good stable roots for themselves, they basically lived what they were TOLD to live and without that person there to LORD over them, they just slipped on off into anything goes-ism.  This is their own fault for being so un disciplined in their own studies and convictions and partly the fault of the ministries and leaderships that they were in contact with for just commanding and demanding a bunch of do's and don't's and never really giving them the tools to get independently stable.   Or B) They either had problems with certain "key issues" of our churches or they had problems with "key people" in our churches.  And they ended up going a little to far to the left for our people because of traditions more than doctrines and they are considered by holiness folks to be "worldly" but once they got to where they were going they stayed there and served God very affectively, sometimes even in the ministry.  This last group I am finding more and more of and they are not "worldly" by any other standards except the main stream holiness people.  As a matter of fact everyone else still considers them legalist or old fashioned.  And they do not continue to "evolve".  They just didn't have what it took to live some things the way the rest of us do that were only there because some great men and women had personal convictions in the past that became universal in our groups.
     Group A gives me a lot of trouble.  Group B I have little to no trouble with at all.  Why would I fall out with people that are living everything in the Bible that they know to live.  Just because they won't live certain things that I live that I know are not directly biblical but that have worked in the past, make me feel safer and help me fellowship my friends?
     Your job from here on out my brother is to do everything in your power to get to heaven and take as many people with you as you can.  I believe in authority, leadership, loyalty and all of that, but this idea that if you leave one church or see things different that one leader or want to be a part of a "loosely knitted together" group that you have to BE just like them or there is something wrong with you....I just don't subscribe to that.  I PERSONALLY like an outward standard that I think is a little tighter than what you HAVE TO live to get to heaven.  For several reasons. Now that is the TRUTH.  Why are we not allowed to be honest?
     There is a place in everyman's heart where truth, doctrine, love, mercy and judgement all come together to form who he is really going to be.  If you want to be a REAL man.  A real CHRISTIAN man, You have to determine that place between you and God and prayer and scripture.  To the point that no matter who pats you on the back, who tries to tear you down and kick you out, who stays, who goes or what is know who you are in Christ, you know why that is who you are and you know exactly where you will draw your strength from to consistently remain that person.  If some have to be exactly like grandma and grandpa to feel secure, if some have to be told by popular leaders to feel secure if someone feels the need to take biblical doctrines and historical doctrines and mesh them into a local "movement", more power to them.  If some can step outside of the "box" but stay inside the bible, that is great.  JUST DON'T LEAVE SCRIPTURE!
     The fact of the matter is people are questioning all over the country right now where "the line" is.  Partly because so many have preached their traditions as doctrines, partly because preachers are being very critical against things that aren't really wrong and partly because the power of being the one that gets to TELL PEOPLE WHAT TO DO has gone to some heads and caused great hypocrisies.  I am left in a very difficult place. I am needing to tell people that they don't have to live "every single tradition" to be a good christian but at the same time warn them that to leave those traditions is a very slippery slope if you don't really HAVE IT FOR YOURSELF.  I don't mind fellowshipping anybody that is real, sincere and genuinely trying to serve God.  But we are surrounded by many that can't do that.  It doesn't make them wrong unless they do something wrong.
     There seems to be this ongoing confusion.  The church is not supposed to by binding people, controlling people with its regulations.  It is supposed to be liberating people with its restoration.  But the Lord frees you FROM feeling like you have to live carnal and corrupt.  He never frees you so that you CAN live carnal and corrupt.
     You need to live #1 what you know is biblical and call it your doctrines and #2 what you feel is comfortable and call it your preference!
     I know that this is long and went all over the map but I was hoping to give you and others a little extra perspective for the days ahead.  If this helped, praise the Lord.  If not just discard it.  Don't let it confuse you.  If you have anymore question or if you need to get more specific, fire away.  I will share this on my blog but not mention your name.  God bless you brother.  Stay in touch.
Your humble servant,
Rev. D. Todd Sloggett

Friday, January 18, 2013


     This, again, is another response to an e-mail that I received, this time it was about “open air” or “street” preaching.  It has been slightly altered to help explain what we were talking about without revealing the identity of the person who asked the question.  Please Share.

     Sorry it has taken me so long to get to you Brother.  That is a pretty loaded question with many rabbit trails to the answer but let me try to sum it up a little bit.  
     First of all, I can NEVER see myself preaching about exact items of clothing and naming them.  Perhaps once in a great while I will use some radical example and call out a “leather mini-skirt” or something fairly crazy to make a point, but to actually name types, lengths, material styles, that are and are not “biblically appropriate” while trying to reach the general public that I am assuming are generally lost...Not going to happen!
     That is one of many portions of doctrine that need to be TAUGHT by preachers and teachers and prayed over until individuals are persuaded by the Holy Ghost.  Preaching in open air is intended for many things.  Declaring salvation, demonstrating Christ and denouncing sin, to name a few.  If one of the primary sins that someone thinks needs to be preached on and gotten straightened out in America today is the exact articles of clothing that people, (especially women) are wearing, then they are either very shallow or very blind.  It amazes me that we overlook things like abortion, adultery, pride, hatred, to get straight to “dressing the lost”.  If we believe in salvation by the blood and sanctification by the blood and the in filling of the Holy Ghost into a willing, clean vessel, then to preach on such things to raw and rank sinners on the streets seems defiant to our beliefs.  
     We believe that we should preach against ignoring God and against not responding to Christ and against rebellion and witchcraft and such things because then a sinner may see their wicked ways and be drawn to the savior.  After salvation they are to be taught, loved on and preached to in the local congregation that they might be fed and learn to pray up to and surrender to sanctification and all things that they didn’t fully receive at salvation, (if there were any, and there usually are, it is normally because they were not taught and do not understand).  This is where the wearing of apparel mostly comes in to play.  Once they have been touched by and responded to the atoning and life style correcting blood then and only then are they a candidate for the Holy Ghost.  
     If this is what we believe then the preacher that preaches to the heathen, about the item by item lifestyle changes of sanctification without them ever being saved, seems to be preaching as if he (the preacher) can TEACH sanctification and the blood is unnecessary.  I realize that I have made some sweeping statements here and these statement are quite generalized and I even know some very dedicated and studied open air preachers that differ slightly with me on this but these things are not for the novice to dive into.
     Please hear me correctly.  I for one believe very strongly in modesty.  I teach very strongly on it.  It is a pillar of a God fearing society.  But we have got to stop getting the cart before the horse.  Worse yet, sometimes we spend all day decorating the cart, not realizing that the horse has already run away.  At the end of the day all we have is a cart that is “fixed up exactly the way we want it” and no way to make any other progress than that!
     I know that when I make comments like this it get backsliders and rebellious church members all frothy and excited, but I do not say these things to tear down the church, I say them to re-build the decaying and crumbling parts of it.  If you use my teachings and comments to help you defy your pastor or run from God or ignore truths then you are abusing them.  
     I hope this helps a little bit.  I know it is not what you are used to nor is it what you have been generally taught or told.  But you asked the question and I did my best to give you an answer that I think in the losg run will do you the most good.  We love you here at HMA Brother and we pray for you and your ministry.  God bless you.
Your humble servant,
Rev. D. Todd Sloggett

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Real answers to a real question! (outside the box but inside the bible)

This is a response that I gave yesterday to a Sister in the Lord that ask me some general questions about holiness standards and youth, etc. She and I agreed that I should probably share it.

Dear Sister,
     I know that I should know who u r because yur picture looks very familiar but please forgive me because I can't place u right now. I get asked questions just like yurs almost every day and my answers always come across arrogant and aggressive sounding and I don't mean it that way. It is just that I know the answers to a lot of these questions but they cut across the grain of what most people have been taught. That's not my fault or my problem but I really do care and that is why my organization is tirelessly trying to do something about it. I hate to even answer yur question because I don't want u to take me wrong as so many have. But let me try.The reason that our churches and each generation get #1 more worldly #2 less outreach minded and #3 more political is because of similar reasons. One of which, and it is one of the biggest if not the biggest reason, is because of the holiness churches' cultic like indoctrination on everything. Our ministers for years have HARPED ON, POUNDED ON, ATTACKED AND SLAMMED all kinds of things from immodesty to homosexuality. From charismaticism to hollywood. But very very few of our ministers TEACH on anything. We are caught up in the hooping, hollering, running, jumping, longhaired, long sleeved, preacher worshipping, catchy titleness, of our ways that we don't take time to TEACH. To teach has become carnal, shallow and dull. Which in turn has made our people carnal, shallow and dull. Many of our people, especially our young people, would live better, if they #1 knew WHY and #2 didn't see such hypocrisy in our doctrines.I hate to b so blunt but when we promote ministries that put side burns on the same doctrinal blasphemy level as's no wonder why our children won't listen to us. They are young not stupid. When we preach as if there is a devil in every flat screen....they know better than that. Look at this. Most of our preachers are naming THINGS when they preach. Hair, sleeves, televisions, red bull, abercrombie and fitch, watches, pants. When u do that u can control a generation for a while. But God doesn't want us to control them, he wants us to win them. He doesn't want us to bind them, he wants us to free them. Instead of naming things, we should b naming sins! Lust, pride, jealousy, back bitting, lying, stealing, adultery, fornication, hatred, bitterness, malice, selfishness. These are the things that Jesus, James, John, Peter and Paul preached against. Sins not things. #1 If you name sins then the Holy ghost can work through the conscience the way He is supposed to and #2 It clarifies to the hearer WHY I am supposed to live this way or that and the devil has less of a foot hold in the mind and they don't believe that they are doing something just because they are SUPPOSED TO or are TOLD to. I tell people all the time. The easiest way to get yur doctrine right on any given subject is to #1 forget everything that u ever heard, thought, read or was taught (as much as possible), #2 study that particular topic extensively, using the bible only, and #3 find where that topic crosses the life of Christ and you will end up with two powerful answers. #1 Where we were wrong and #2 what the right answer is. Don't get me wrong. It sounds like I think Holiness is all wrong. Holiness is right. The way we have drifted off to attain it and indoctrinate people with it, is not. We want the easy, lazy way. The way that keeps people ignorant and dependent upon us to tell them what to do and think. It gives us power.But what they need is the harder, deeper way. The way that men are wrong and God is right. We need to teach them, love them, correct them, pray for them and wait for God to change them. That has become the non-holiness way in a lot of circles. God help us.I believe in standards. I love a much more conservative outward standard. I abhor the influence of hollywood, rock no roll, country and western music and pro-sports. But people aren't going to listen when u just tell them "don't do it. We know better. Everything is of the devil unless we put our stamp of approval on it." Also, it is very important for everything that they CAN'T DO that they have something else TO DO. Almost all of the preaching of some of our groups is on what not to do. With little to no preaching on what to do. Young people are full of energy and spit and get up n go. They need things to do that are Godly. This is where fellowship and outreach play such a huge part in the Christian life. Problem is, holiness folks in general have a harder and harder time doing either one. We can't fellowship this group because they are too loose, we won't fellowship that group cause they are too tight. We can't do outreach to these people because they are so bad, we can't help those people because......I know u probably won't believe this, but I am soooooo glad that I am Holiness. But I am Biblical Holiness and I can back up what I live and preach with the bible. And I am happy and not hateful. I enjoy my life and I can be wrong, I can apologize, I can compromise, I can even work with people that don't see it my way, if it furthers the kingdom of heaven.As you can tell this is a huge subject and I have lots to say about it. This is just some brief blatherings off of the top of my head. I hope this helps a little. If not just discard it. If u have any specific questions about anything feel free to ask. I really hope I was not offensive at all. Please pray for us here at HMA. God Bless! Oh, and tell me who u r or where I know u from. Now that I look over this note back to u I wonder if U would mind if I copied and pasted it to my fb page. I won't give any kind of information about u. I just figure that a lot of people have similar questions and this could help a lot of them at the same time. ???

Monday, January 14, 2013

More news about Jacob's Ladder

     I recently spent some time in Georgia and while I was preaching at a conference, one of the sisters in the church told me about having to take a family member to Macon, GA for drug rehabilitation. She was very upset at the whole situation but found some relief when she realized that the facility that they were going to was using "Jacob's Ladder", which is a program that I helped write and have distributed all over the country. She was the third or fourth person to tell me that this facility was using our program and later that week I ended up staying two days in Macon, soooo, I stopped by the facility. It is owned and operated by Salvation Army International as best I could tell and they were happy to inform me about their program. It is a multi-level facility for homeless, addiction, job, nutrition and housing problems. Very similar to what we are slowly but surely putting together in Oklahoma. I asked specifically about the "Jacob's Ladder" program. They told me that they already had a "steps" program in place for addicts but they felt it did not have enough "religion" in it. They were looking for something to supplement their program with, that told more truths about God, biblical truths and the eternal affects of staying clean, etc. When I told them who I was they asked if they were infringing on any copywrites or anything. I told them that our actual booklet on using the program was about to be released and selling or distributing that booklet might cause a problem but to "use" the basic ideas and doctrines that we apply from the bible into people's real lives could never be copywrited. I told them that I was proud of them and happy for the people that were getting help at thier facility. It appears that they got the ideas about "Jacob's Ladder" from a southern county in Alabama who got it from a church that we are affiliated with who got part of thier's from the state of Texas and the rest of it from me. Everyone pray that we can finish the booklet quickly and get it in the hands of those that will use it for the glory of God. The facility in Macon has asked for the booklet as soon as it is released, as have many pastors all across the country. Pastor Jeff Owen and his wife and Pastor David Lamb and his church have done thier parts and the ideas are categorized, tried, proven and written down, I just need to have the art work finished and the booklets printed.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Random Special Pictures and Events!

          I know that I am going to cram together a bunch of somewhat un-related topics here today but it is the only way that I can even begin to get caught up with the things that I need to be blogging about.  I have so may pictures and there are so many exciting things to tell.  This entire post today is just a bunch of random things that I have been doing or wanting to tell the world about for awhile now and they are just piling up in my head and I need to get them on here and off of my mind.  I am putting together many more things to write on here but in the mean time here are a few tidbits to keep everyone occupied and reading fresh material about HMA and our ministries.
Please read, enjoy and share them at your convenience.  Here are a few from just the past little while.   
        This first picture is of all the original members of what was then called Sloggett Family Ministries which later became Holiness Missions to America, now generally referred to as HMA Inc.  This is myself with my wife and our four children at our home church on Christmas Sunday 2012.  Our oldest is Justin, in the dark maroon shirt, he is 22 and has always worked with the mission group and still works full time for our ministry today.  Next is Sean, in the suit and tie.  He is 20 and worked for the mission group up until last year.  Sean has been very valuable to our ministries over the years.  He still does things with the ministry from time to time but he holds down a full time job at the bank and goes to college as well.  Our youngest son's name is Branden.  He is the one  in the pink shirt.  Most people that know him do not even know that is his name because he has been called Ducky his entire life and to this day that is all most of us ever refer to him as.  Ducky has had many different forms of schooling but he is basically a junior in high school now and should graduate next year from Bethany Christian Academy.  He also works part time at the mission.  Our daughter's name is Tirzah.  It is like saying tears and then uh at the end.  Tears uh.  She is a lovely young lady and very dedicated to the Lord.  Tirzah works for the mission group also.  My wife works keeps our home, keeps our family budget, keeps the books at The Saving Place, which is the furniture thrift store owned by our mission group, keeps the master books for HMA, teaches 5th and 6th grade at our K-12 school at our home church, keeps me in line and somehow keeps from going insane.  She is a marvelous lady. We had her entire family come to Oklahoma from Idaho and Virginia for Christmas this year.  My wife, Niki, has an older brother that has spent most of his adulst life in the army and he and his family live in Virginia and drove out.  Niki also has a younger sister that still lives near where we were all raised in Nyssa, Oregon and her and her husband and children drove out.  Also my mother and father-in-law flew out.  It was an outstanding time of family and fun.  Some stayed in our home with us while others stayed in a hotel.  We had many big meals together at our home and opened gifts, shot guns at the gun range, played with the children and had long conversations over multiple cups of coffee.  I was sick for most of the time and that by itself was not a lot of fun but altogether I was glad that it worked out as well as it did.

        The next few pictures are of what is now fondly referred to as "The Victory Wall".  This is something that was started in the first HMA building a several years back.  My original office was a small room that faced the highway off to the side of the first official HMA sanctuary.  Doing the type of outreach that we do is so amazing that we feel the need to take a lot of pictures.  Pictures of drug addicts all messed up from years of abuse.  Pictures of some of us passing out tracts or preaching on the garbage strewn streets of inner cities.  Pictures of all the pills that were turned in at the altar calls before we flush them down the toilet.  And especially pictures of people that God has saved, healed, delivered and put back together.  After years of doing this type of work and taking tens of thousands of pictures we began to receive notes, letters, cards and all sorts of trinkets and paraphernalia.  Each of these things were very special to me and I would look at them, touch them and read them over and over.  But they were beginning to really pile up in my office and I was afraid of losing them.  I had stuck a couple of letters, notes and pictures on the wall that were extra special to me one day and then I began to realize that they were all so special it was hard to categorize them.  One day I just started putting them all up on my wall with tacks, nails and tape.  It became a huge undertaking and it consumed weeks and weeks of my spare time.  People that visited the mission always wanted to come in and see "The Wall", as it was referred to back then.  When we moved to our new, much larger building, several ladies that work with one of our affiliated asked if they could donate their time to move "The Wall" to the new location.  The wall had actually become the walls.  Almost my entire office had been completely papers in pictures, letters, cards, stories and things given to the mission by our converts.  Things to remember them and their stories by.  Thankfully my new office was much larger and the wall quickly expanded.  As the wall was expanding so was the new store and the mission projects.  We eventually had to move my office again and take that large spacious area that was my office in as show room space for our new line of mattresses that we were making money for the mission group with.  When we did, I almost had the wall taken down and moved again but I decided not to.  And I am so glad that i didn't.  Our mattresses are out most popular product and one end of the mattress gallery is completely coved with the "Victory Wall" as it is now called.  People look at it every day.  People have come from other states and other denominations and walked in the front door and when we ask if we can help them find anything, they say, "We came to see the victory wall."  It is nothing these days to be shopping through our store and get to the back showroom and see 25 different mattress sets on display and a person or two standing in the back crying, looking at the victory wall.  People ask me questions about it almost every day.  I have actually seen people get saved from reading the letters and being told the stories.  And yes, we still add to it almost every week.
              The pictures of the dinning hall and the cake are one of the great highlights of my ministry.  I would have to say that preaching on the exact spot where Christ taught the sermon on the mount is my fondest preaching memory but preaching and teaching the first annual South Georgia Minister's Conference rank right up toward the top as well.  The idea of ministering, (speaking for God), keeps me very awe struck and humbled, but to preach to preachers was almost more than I could take.  Each and everyone of them was so kind, considerate and respectful to me that I literally would go back to the place where I was staying and cry and ask God to help me not to mess the meeting up.  We had great fellowship and worship together and to top it off they already asked me to do it again!  I was in my car driving back to Oklahoma from Georgia and I was crying and thanking God for letting someone like me have anything to do with these wonderful people and for the once in a lifetime chance to preach my burden to these pastors and preachers and my cell phone rang in Fort Payne, Alabama and a great man of God was on the other end and asked me if there was anyway that I could preach the day services of their Missions Conference this year.  Are you kidding me?!  Preaching my burden to a bunch more ministers?  Missionary ministers?  Do fish swim?  Of course I will come!!!  Wow, adore you, and I am amazed at what you will allow me to do.  Everyone join in with my prayers and ask Him to help me not to mess this one up either.  Love and Prayers, more to come.
Your humble servant,
Rev. D. Todd Sloggett


     A few weeks ago I posted a pic on here of myself holding a baby and I told the story of that baby's mother getting off drugs etc.  I wanted to post this pic of the mother holding the baby in celebration of a momentous occasion.  Christmas Sunday 2012 I received a call from this young lady letting me know that as of that moment she has been clean and delivered from drugs by the help of the Lord for exactly one year.  God is amazing.

Blessed Surprise

     Sorry for the delay it getting out this information but we had an extended Christmas break with our family and before I had time to get everything back in order at "The Saving Place" I was already back on the road.  :)    I am writting this in a motel room in Atlanta on my way to preach a Minister's Conference in Wray, Georgia.  I have one stop in Alabama next week then right back to Tulsa.
     I just wanted to share a couple pics with everyone and the amazinng story behind them.  A couple years back we were working with the  Tulsa Public School System and I was working with several counselors that were trying to reach some high risk inner-city teens before it was too late.  Since then, that part of our ministry has blossomed tremendously.  Most of  the counselors moved on and there are two of them that I stay in contact with.  In the mean time of course, we continue our work in other areas.  Recently I was blessed by God to work with one of the worst heroine addicts I have ever seen.  He has been very bound and he has made many terrible decisions but after just a few weeks of dealing with him he has become very soft, very sincere and very serious about cleaning his life up.  He has turned his heart and life over to God, stopped doing all of his addictions, graduated a sober living program and has been admitted to special housing for people trying to get thier lives back on track.  Now, how do these two stories relate? 
     When I went to his graduation, I sat on the side where the visitors sit and before I realized what was happening I had been approached by a young lady and it was one of the counselors from the old Tulsa School Program.  She had left the public school system in search for more freedom to work with people that she could help better.  The last that I knew she had been trying to run her own women's half way house type facility and we had given her some advice about trying to operate as a ministry outside of government funding as well as some other technical stuff that we had discussed.  All this time later, The Lord had used all of us to reach more people.  She was actually one of the new counselors at the program for the young man that I came to see graduate.  

     I love what I do and I can hardly believe that God, in all his infinite wisdom allows me to continue to do it.  Thanks be to Jesus.  And thank you Todd and Amy for being my friends.