August Update 2023

11:41 am Ministry Journal


Building Relationships

Last month, I highlighted Living a Balanced life with the idea of making choices to enjoy all you do and not get burned out. This month, I’d like to touch on how to build and maintain relationships that are positive and mutually beneficial. God wants us to love everyone as He loves them. But, Jesus demonstrated that it’s only natural to be closer to some people (such as the 12 disciples) and recognize some people are toxic and should be handled carefully (such a some Pharisees). In general, it’s best to be inclusive and “love your neighbor as yourself.” Maneuvering through the world of relationships can be complicated and frustrating as well as rewarding and encouraging. Stephen Covey, in his book 7 Habits of Highly Effective People (and his book on the added 8th Habit) gives 4 interpersonal habits for us to keep in mind to help us nurture our relationships with others. These have been very inspiring for me. Building relationships is not something we arrive at. It’s ongoing and must be intentional. We make plenty of mistakes along the way. May the following principles help you on your journey.


1)  Think Win-Win [Habit 4]
Genuinely strive for mutually beneficial solutions or agreements in your relationships. Value and respect people by understanding a “win” for all.


2)  Seek First to Understand, Then to be Understood [Habit 5]
Use empathic listening to be genuinely influenced by a person, which compels them to reciprocate the listening and take an open mind to being influenced by you.


3)  Synergize [Habit 6]
Combine the strengths of people through positive teamwork, so as to achieve goals no one person could do alone.


4)  Find Your Voice and Inspire Others to Find Theirs [Habit 8]
Out of your uniqueness and strengths, find your influence.  Then help others find theirs. Watch out for the 5 cancerous behaviors:  criticism, complaining, comparing, competing, & contending.


Thank you so much for being a part of the Heartfelt Music Ministry community. It’s because of your prayers and support that we are able to continue to lead others toward intimacy with God and toward excellence in artistry.


Since it’s still summer, you may want to watch my Summer Home Concert on my YouTube channel at I played all the songs on my latest album, Encore, and wrapped it up with My Prayer for You. I hope it encourages you!


Valley Christian School Begins

I’m continuing to teach music, guitar, worship and video at Valley Christian Schools with both junior high and high school. Last week, I played bass guitar for our first worshipful Convocation.


Summer Concert Series Recap

The Mount Hermon Summer Concert Series was such a blessing. Each concert brought in more people than ever! The last concert with Phillips, Craig & Dean had almost 700 attending.


Encore Summer Concert

Watch last month’s Summer Home Concert on my YouTube channel, with songs from the new album, Encore, (and My Prayer for You). You can hear clips of each song on the album Encore at

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