“MORE THAN SONGS” Companion Adult Study (Introduction)

This is the introduction to the study that accompanies my book MORE THAN SONGS

 

The most important book you can ever read is The Holy Bible. To read it simply as a book can impart great wisdom and understanding of the nature of humanity, God, and history. It contains principles for all aspects of life, love, and prosperity.

However, the Bible is far more than a book. It is the revelation of God. He authored all sixty-six books, through yielded servants who faithfully recorded what the Lord told them to write. The words are the power of God released to anyone who seeks to know Him. They are truth. They are eternal. They are universal, and they are personal. Continue reading “MORE THAN SONGS” Companion Adult Study (Introduction)

Obsession Costs Too Much

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Revisionist History.”

In 2002, I was obsessed with finishing writing my first book, MORE THAN SONGS. I had labored over it with research, writing, re-writing, learning, un-learning, discouragement, and encouragement. I was unemployed. That of course put financial pressure on my home and marriage. I was in deep depression. But I was writing like a fiend.

In fact, I was neglecting my wife, I was so obsessed with completing the book.

I finished the book. Unfortunately, at the expense of my marriage.

Now… if things had gone differently…

I would have realized that the book was already written; it just required some editing and tweaking, and not become so obsessed about it. I could have devoted time and energy to job-hunting, which would have likely relieved a lot of my stress and discouragement. Finding another job would have eased the financial strain on our home.

And most importantly, spend time showing my wife that she was the most important person in my life. I would still be married. IF is such a BIG word, isn’t it?

First Excerpt From ‘MORE THAN SONGS’

****** This excerpt from my first book, MORE THAN SONGS by Mike Mattice copyright © 2001. It’s unpublished as of now, but I hope it will be in the near future ********************************************************************************

Acknowledgments

 

First and foremost, I want to thank and praise my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, for giving me a heart of worship.  I sure didn’t have it on my own!

 

Secondly, my eternal love and gratitude goes to my wife, Kathy, who has spent twenty years trying to teach me “simplicity”.  Again, I sure don’t have it on my own.

 

For my inquisitive daughter, Mindy, who keeps me searching for the answers; and my grandchildren, who restore the child in me…  words can’t express it!  Out of the mouths of babes, His praise is perfected.

 

Also, I give many thanks to the authors, editors, publishers, and teachers for providing the many resource materials.  

 

Preface “Is This The Right Book?”

 

This is not a book of worship techniques.  Although I may interject some personal observations, make suggestions, and offer opinions, this is not a “how to…” manual. I hope to awaken, encourage, and inspire readers who, like me, seek a deeper and fuller worship experience.

All seekers can come to know God.  Although many of His ways are mysterious to our limited minds, God is not a mystery! You don’t have to be a Bible scholar to know God. He wants to be known!  He loves each of us so much that God chose to allow His Son’s death for our sakes. Worship is a perfectly natural and normal response when you know our loving Lord.

If you’re not sure these words are true, your curiosity may have led you to this book because you’re searching for something or someone.  Your Heavenly Father desires your company, and has used your curiosity to call you.  He knows all that you’ve ever done, said, or thought, and yet He wants to forgive you completely, cleanse you entirely, and hold you forever close to His heart.  Right now… wherever you are…you can bow your heart and agree with God that you know you’ve sinned, but you want to change.  Accept God’s forgiveness and cleansing for you… personally.  He extends it through the centuries, from the cross at Calvary where Jesus bled and died for you, directly to you, wherever you are right now.  Trust that Jesus of Nazareth is the only, uniquely begotten Son of the Living God, Who did not sin; but in a way that we can’t fully understand, He became all of our sins, and died to pay the penalty for everything we ever did wrong.  Acknowledge Him as your personal Savior.

But if Christ is not raised from the dead, then our faith is in vain.  You may be thinking: “When you’re dead, you’re dead.  How could he rise from the dead?”  This is an excellent question!  Research for yourself.  You will find that the life, death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth in first century Jerusalem is the single most-documented event in the entire history of the world.  There are secular accounts as well as those of believers, all eyewitnesses to these events.

So, if you’ve just accepted God’s forgiveness through Jesus Christ, put down this book.  Pick up a Bible, and start to get to know your loving Savior.  I suggest starting in the New Testament with the Gospel of John.  Then, you must talk with someone regularly in order to establish a relationship with them, so talk to your Heavenly Father in Jesus’ Name, as He commanded.  Then listen as well.  You’d be surprised what God has to say to you.

Then (and this is very important!) get involved with a local Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church.  Don’t be afraid to ask questions.  God’s not afraid of your honest questions and neither will a pastor that’s any good!  God bless you, and maybe someday you’ll pick up this book, and it will minister to you; but this is not the right book for you right now.

I believe that the Holy Bible is the infallible, God-breathed Word of the Living God.  This book won’t attempt to prove this tenet. In fact, I’m going to assume that you share this conviction.  If you don’t accept that all Scripture is given by inspiration (breath) of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, [and] for instruction in righteousness (2 Tim 3:16), then you are reading the wrong book!  Put this one down, open the Bible, and let God reveal His truth to you.

This book will offend some.  That’s okay.  If it does, then hopefully you’ll be challenged to carefully study and examine the offense.  If you search the Scriptures, and find that I’ve written something unbiblical, then you should not read this book any further.  But, please take the time to write to me!  I don’t claim to have all-inclusive knowledge of Scripture, nor infallibility.  However, to the best of my ability, I have studied and prayerfully written this book. I believe that God has revealed these truths to me and inspired me to share them.  The only worthwhile things I have to say are what God has shown me.  Please forgive my occasional lapses into opinion, and just let God’s truth speak to you. Some of you may have better understanding of the Bible, and find mistakes.  Please don’t let me continue in error.  In the back of this book will be an address where you are welcomed to write to me.

However, if your study shows I’ve been accurate, but the “picture of biblical worship” in this book doesn’t agree with your traditions, beliefs, personal convictions, and/or experiences… THEN YOU ARE READING THE RIGHT BOOK!!!   In fact, you are the person for whom this book was primarily written.  Take your Bible, this book, any “Statement of Faith (or Beliefs)” to which you adhere, roll up your sleeves, and prepare to receive from the Living Lord!

MAY THE LORD JESUS REVEAL HIMSELF TO YOU!

In His Service,


Mike Mattice

************** Please read, and more importantly, review this excerpt for me. Your feedback is very important to me. **************************************

 

Not Everything In Our Time

My Kickstarter.com project, seeking backers to invest in the ministry of my first book MORE THAN SONGS  failed. My efforts to raise $12,000 dollars to publish, I succeeded in raising $25.

So, here’s the way I look at it:

I asked a few brothers and sisters in the Lord to take a look at the project and give me honest feedback. One of these told me that he believed “you have to walk the walk in order to talk the talk. And [he] just didn’t see that in my daily life.” This hit me hard, but it was the truth.

I had been straying from living in the reality of what I believe. Oh, I still believe it, but I had become discouraged and was reverting back to old ways of dealing with stress and discouragement. I was not walking the walk.

To make it even worse… because of my biblical knowledge, I could still talk the talk. That would make me a hypocrite. I can praise and worship God sincerely because I know He is worthy. And I have the knowledge to teach many things of God. But if this knowledge affects no change in my life, then the message, no matter how powerful, is tainted, by me.

I was actually trying to convince myself and the Lord that if He would finally bring the vision He has given me to fruition, I would be so encouraged, then I could live the life that I know I should. I have been an intelligent fool. Having knowledge without understanding; knowledge without application is foolishness.

In a nutshell, my heavenly Father knows the true me, and knows that I am not ready yet to fulfill that vision. If He were to permit it now, my own foolishness would bring the important message to ruin. My behavior (deliberate sin) would taint the anointing on the message. And God does not call us into failure. When we follow His leading, we will succeed. The success may not have the form we thought it would, or happen when we think it should; but it will be according to His perfect will and perfect timing.

I just hope I can get it right before it’s too late for me.

Kickstarter Launch

My Kickstarter project has been accepted… quicker than I expected. The launch date is tomorrow:

SUNDAY JUNE 1, 2014

The duration of the project is just 30 days, so on July 1st, I will know if it worked or not. I will post the link tomorrow morning. I hope to hear from all my friends. And hopefully my friends will spread the word. Just like the ripples of a small stone thrown into the water. Kinda cool visualization, huh?

I am excited but also nervous. I have never done anything like this before. It’s all or nothing. If my project meets or exceeds the goal, it’s a green light. But if the goal is not met, I get nothing.

Just Around The Corner

Yesterday I submitted my Kickstarter.com project. They say it usually takes 2 – 3 business days to examine it; to ensure that it meets the guidelines. If there are any parts that need editing, they will let me know. Then I can re-submit the project.

Once approved, I can launch when I want.

I’m excited. In 30 days after I launch, I will either have the funds to invest in the publication of my first book, MORE THAN SONGS, or I will know that it was not meant to be done… at least not that way.

I believe in the message of the book. I believe it will be published. And I believe that I will travel to churches and conferences, sharing the messages.

 

This is my design for a possible cover
This is my design for a possible cover