Guest Artist: Spencer McCool Jr.

Our special guest artist this month is another of my dearest friends. Spencer McCool Jr. is a man of many talents. He is the Pastor of Greater Life Ministries in Utica, Michigan. He, and his wife Tessa, have two wonderful children, and are involved in their community.

You might not expect someone as busy as he is to be a skilled artist, but you’d be wrong. He describes his love of art this way, “Art for me is a release. It’s an opportunity to go into my own world for a few hours. I feel like art should be something you love, and it should be fun. If art isn’t fun you aren’t doing it right.”

While more of a Marvel guy, we both share a love of Batman. His newest piece features his interpretation of two of my favorite characters in the Batman universe. They are Batman and Penguin. We hope you love “Ominous” as much as we do.

IMG_4917.JPG

Guest Article: A Weak In The Life By Travis Cantrell

God brings special people into your life to inspire and encourage you.  One such person is my friend, Travis Cantrell.  You’ve seen his beautiful artwork in the past, including his interpretation of the hero Zorro, on our site.  What you may not know, is that he is an incredible writer.  As well as working full time to support his family, he is a Teacher at his Church, a writer, and an artist. 

The following article first appeared on July 24th on a blog for his church, Community Heights Church.  It was such an inspiration to me, that I immediately asked if we could re-post it.  I hope it blesses you as much as it has me.


 

A Weak In The Life By Travis Cantrell

Sunday: Today’s church service has me so pumped up for Jesus! I can’t wait to get to work tomorrow and share my love for the Lord with my unsaved/unchurched coworkers!!!

Monday: Waking up at 5 AM is ridiculous! Need coffee, stat! I’d share my faith at work, but this day is starting off all wrong and I’m grouchy! I don’t want to be a hypocrite. Maybe tomorrow would be a better day to initiate a God conversation!

Tuesday: *yawn* I am definitely going to bed by ten tonight! I have way too much to deal with today! I wish I didn’t have to work on that project with weird-Angela this afternoon… maybe she’ll be sick today so I can just do it myself! I can hope! Wait, am I wishing someone ill?
On the plus side, I had alone time with God. I prayed for forgiveness for wishing sickness on weird-Angela!
Number of Monster Energy drinks required to make it through daughter’s karate practice: 2
Bedtime: 11:47

Wednesday: I didn’t talk to my coworkers about Sunday’s message yesterday! I’ll start off with that joke the pastor told… let’s see, three guys are on a boat and… how did he say it? Aww, man, we’re learning that new process today. Nobody’s going to want to hear a joke while dealing with that!
Number of Red Bulls to maintain consciousness through training: 3

Thursday: What is that smell? Oh no, I think that’s skunk smell! Did a skunk die under my house? I think a skunk died under my house!
On the plus side, I had alone time with God today. That alone time consisted of praying, “Lord, please don’t let me smell like skunk at work today! Amen!”

Friday: Woohoo, it’s Friday! TGIF! Fridays would be much better if I didn’t have to work all day! I need coffee. And an energy drink. Maybe two. Of each. But it’s family night! Maybe we’ll watch a movie! What could we watch that we’ll all enjoy and won’t damage the children? It’s too much to think about and I don’t want to stop at the DVD machine on the way home!

Saturday: Yes! No work today! Now I can get the yard work done and repair the cabinets and snake the bathroom drain and fill up the kiddie pool and play baseball in the front yard with the children and…. oh, I need to work on my Sunday School lesson! Can I just call in sick to church tomorrow?

Sunday: I should’ve gotten in bed earlier last night. Must wake up children, ensure they’re fed, and get to church with a smile on my face so nobody knows how stressed I am! What would people think if they really knew?
….
Today’s church service has me so pumped up for Jesus! I can’t wait to get to work tomorrow and share my love for the Lord with my unsaved/unchurched coworkers!!!

Does any of this sound familiar to you? If this sounds like the week you’re having, I pray it gets better! We all have times in our lives where we have so much on us and we’re so overwhelmed that it seems like it’s just too much. It seems like the world that we live in demands more time and effort than we have to offer. But is that what God wants for us?
After God completed His creation of the universe, He rested. Had God exhausted Himself over the previous six days? I don’t believe God is exhaustible, but I do believe He did this as an example for us. Later, the Lord declared a Sabbath for the Jewish people. While we do not observe a Jewish Sabbath, the message is clear – God wants us to take a break.

God doesn’t want us to live lives that are so filled with activity, stress, and responsibility that we spend every waking hour wishing we could rest. He didn’t give us bodies that do not tire. If we fail to rest, our week will make us weak. When I fail to follow God’s example, it leaves my priorities askew and hinders my effectiveness in the areas I should focus on. Occasionally, I come to the realization that my life is too busy. So, I’m going to reflect and acknowledge that some things have to go. If you’ve read this and thought, That week sounds like my week and it’s leaving me weak, then hopefully you’re encouraged to do the same!