With the holidays approaching, it always seems to be the time that devotionals point us in the direction of
having “an attitude of gratitude,” and mine today was no different. My verse for the day was 2 Corinthians 9:10-11, “Now he who supplies seed to the sower and bread for food will also supply and increase your store of seed and will enlarge the harvest of your righteousness. You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.”
I think I reread this verse ten times before I decided to start breaking it down to fully understand just what The Lord personally was saying to me. Basically, God is supplying the seed and bread, increasing my store of seed, and enlarging the harvest of righteousness, so that I will be enriched in every way. Hmmm, sounding good so far, “but why Lord, why do you chose to enrich me?” “Oh My Child, I have poured into you in such a generous way that if you chose to follow My example and live a life of generosity…” That’s not very hard to understand. The choice is mine to make and He is calling me to be generous.
In 2011 we met this precious couple, Ken and Jennifer Turner. After hearing their testimony, their passion for Christ, and their love for others, we wanted to be engaged in their ministry beyond “hearing,” beyond “watching,” and beyond “sharing.” In the words of my mentor, David Busby, We desired to “taste” of that which God had called them to and join them in the journey. Walt and I now serve on the board for High Impact Teens, but we have also chosen to stand beside Ken and Jennifer in the work that they are doing. The blessing has been ours and it has been more than a privilege to be on the HIT team.
We have been with Ken when he has shared in juvenile detention centers on what it means to “Man Up” and be a disciple for Christ. Approximately 90% of these young men do not have a father, but Ken shares with them about a Father that will never leave them nor forsake them and hope returns to their eyes and eventually their souls.
Two weeks ago, I was with Ken when he shared with hundreds of public school students in Rhea County and Roane County Tennessee “Your classmates are killing themselves.” Students are going home from school to commit suicide because the treatment they receive at school has become so intense they feel no hope for a life that is bearable. High Impact Teens brought in Kim Harvey of Angels and Doves, the National Anti-Bullying Program for schools and youth organizations, former University of Tennessee football player Inky Johnson as well as musician and songwriter Scott Roley of Franklin, Tennessee. The message was so powerful. Whether it is Character and Values Mentoring in court ordered alternative schools or Leading P3 Clubs (Positive Peer Pressure) in 8 county schools in TN, crying with a young man in the detention center who has no one to go home to, or engaging with athletic teams to play for reasons other than the earthly desire to win, Ken and Jennifer give of their lives to minister to others.
Our desire as a couple, and as a board, is that we have at least 100 individuals 10 corporate sponsors and 10 churches partnering with High Impact Teens on a monthly basis. This support team will provide a strong foundation of prayer and financial resources that will give Ken and Jennifer the opportunity to focus on that which God has called them to do …. minister to the least of these, love the broken hearted, and disciple and train up this generation of youth. Please pray earnestly about making an end of the year donation to this frontline ministry to fatherless youth. We also ask that you pray about becoming a monthly supporter. I can assure you that God is true to His Word and that your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God.
Walt and Diane Sirmans
High Impact Teens Partners with National Anti-Bullying Program Angels and Doves
“Classmates are killing themselves… literally.” As I stood before hundreds of public school students in Rhea County and Roane County Tennessee to introduce Kim Harvey of Angels and Doves, the National Anti-Bullying Program for schools and youth organizations, I made the statement to the students… “Your classmates are killing themselves. All across America students are going home from school to commit suicide because the treatment they receive at school has become so intense they feel no hope for a life that is bearable, so they end it by taking their own life.”
The team of presenters not only included Kim Harvey of Angels and Doves based in Indianapolis, Indiana but also former University of Tennessee football player Inky Johnson as well as musician and songwriter Scott Roley of Franklin, Tennessee. Kim founded the Angels and Doves National Anti-Bullying Program and has presented her message in a way that has reshaped the culture on many school campuses. I met Kim at an event we participated in together in July 2012 at the Marion County Juvenile Detention Center in Indianapolis focused on anti-violence. After Kim presented the keynote presentation on bullying to the students, Inky Johnson shared his story of incredible success as a UT football player who was on track to an illustrious NFL career but his life plans were altered when he made a tackle in his junior year at UT and almost lost his life from the injuries he received. Although his life was spared, he now lives daily with a paralyzed right arm. Inky’s message was powerful as he explained that he went from a person with incredible God-given athletic ability to a person with a disability. But, he is still just as valuable with or without the use of his right arm. He challenged the students to treat all classmates with respect and seek to know each other’s story of life. Scott Roley closed the presentation with a story about his dad and an anger problem that was passed down through the generations of his family. He sang a song he wrote about his dad and how he had taken his dad’s anger problem and embraced it and then passed it down. The song titled, “The Old Man Came Back Last Night” was a powerful closing message to all our students.
Our team made presentations in Spring City Middle School, Rhea Central, Roane County High School, Rockwood High School and Rockwood Middle School. Local businesses and churches sponsored our presentations in Rhea County and the Roane County Anti-Drug Coalition was our signature sponsor for the programs in Roane County.
On a Monday night during our “Man Up” Bible study 6 teenage boys accepted Jesus Christ as their personal savior! I was asked to bring the Bible study in to a different unit from what was scheduled. This Bible study is something I started about at the Marion County Juvenile Detention Center in Indianapolis. When I walked in to the room, one boy was kind of upset and let it be known that he was not interested in listening to a Bible study. So I opened in prayer and jumped right in. His countenance changed almost instantly and he started listening, asking questions and became very engaged. Other guys followed with that same desire to hear. It was one of the most amazing evidences of seeing the Holy Spirit work I have ever experienced. At the end 6 teenage boys asked to be saved. One boy walked up to me after we finished, he grabbed my hand and leaned toward my ear and said, “My name is Michael. I need you to remember my name a please continue to pray for me. Remember… it’s Michael.”
It kind of made me wonder if Michael has people in his life who really care for him, who pray for him and are willing to take his name to the throne of God.
When the Bible study ended the guys started applauding, thanking me and asking me to come back as soon as possible to share more. The applause was started by the guy who was so angry when I walked in to the room.
Oh, and the guy that was angry when we started… he’s a brother in Christ now too!
If you ever wonder if God really knows who you are and what is happening in your life right now… read Psalm 139. You will be amazed at what He has to say about the subject.
High Impact Teens was invited to be the official provider of mentors at the All Pro Dad Father and Kids NFL Experience held at the Indianapolis Colts training facility. The event was held on August 25. A limited number of fathers and kids were invited to attend and High Impact Teens was there to provide mentors for a group of young people who attended from Indianapolis without dads.
This special event was filmed for TV simulcast to be aired on January 13, 2013 at 1:00 PM.
Our ministry is blessed to have some great ministry partners! They are people who volunteer in various capacities throughout the year and those who make the commitment to support the ministry to make it all possible. Without our volunteers and donors we wouldn’t exist.
On a personal note, my weekend in Indianapolis was filled with a lot of “behind the scenes” experiences. I travelled from Tennessee up to Indy on Friday, August 24 to join Darrin Gray. Darrin is the National Development Director for All Pro Dad and one of my best friends. We met after I started our outreach ministry in Indianapolis a few years ago and we have chosen to share our “ministry platforms” together ever since. The weekend of events included me picking up Darrin at his house north of Indianapolis, loading up all kinds of books, displays and giveaways for a whirlwind of activities.
We headed over to the Colts Training Facility to meet with Derrick Boles of Leadership 1st and Lorenzo Neal. These guys were awesome to spend time with. We discussed some of our ministry goals, shared ideas about outreach and brainstormed about some ministry plans for the future. Derrick and Lorenzo are great guys and have a great vision for youth. And they are funny! We had a lot of laughs over the weekend.
We picked up Tony Dungy and Mark Merrill at the airport and headed straight to Riley Hospital for some visits with kids who are battling illness. Clark Kellogg met us at the hospital and our group got bigger and bigger. We were walking the halls with Tony Dungy, Clark Kellogg, Darrin Gray, Mark Merrill, Derrick Boles, Lorenzo Neal and key hospital staff members visiting kids.
We left the hospital and headed over the the Lucas Oil Mansion. Tony Dungy and Clark Kellogg spoke to a group of invited guests to raise money for Kids Voice.
THE JERSEY EFFECT WEEKEND
August 11, 12 and 13, 2012
HIGH IMPACT TEENS AND THE JERSEY EFFECT ARE BRINGING THE POWER OF THE NFL TO PROMOTE POSITIVE PEER PRESSURE AND REACH OUR LOCAL YOUTH
12 YEAR NFL VETERAN AND SUPER BOWL CHAMPION HUNTER SMITH ALONG WITH DARRIN GRAY OF ALL PRO DAD TO KICK OFF RHEA COUNTY AND ROANE COUNTY SCHOOL YEARA local youth outreach called High Impact Teens, founded by Ken Turner has helped bring strategic partnerships together to reach our local youth. Ken relocated High Impact Teens to the area from Indianapolis, Indiana and will be kicking off the fall school year (no pun intended) with a veteran NFL Colts punter, Hunter Smith along with Darrin Gray of All Pro Dad. The timing couldn’t be better to boost the youth in our community toward being strong in character, integrity and positive role models among their own peers. Hunter Smith, Darrin Gray, Stephen Copeland (of Sports Spectrum Magazine) and Ken Turner invested over 18 months together writing a new book that was just released in June called The Jersey Effect. The message of the book is a powerful challenge about Hunter Smith and ten members of the Indianapolis Colts Super Bowl XLI Championship winning team. Each one chosen to be a part of the book were selected based on their personal commitment to wear their “jersey” with the goal of having a positive “effect” on everyone around them, including teammates, coaches and fans. The message is resonating well with readers since the first printing of the book has almost sold out since its release on June 1. A second printing is in place now to keep the momentum of the message going. With a foreword by former head coach of the Colts, Tony Dungy and chapters based on high character individuals within the Colts Super Bowl Championship team such as Jeff Saturday, Tarik Glenn, Ben Utecht and others, the authors are seeking to ignite a movement among today’s youth to stand up and be different.
If you would like to connect with Hunter Smith and Darrin Gray and learn more about the Rhea County based youth outreach ministry of High Impact Teens, you can catch them at any one of these places:
MEET HUNTER SMITH 12 YEAR NFL VETERAN * 10 YEARS WITH THE INDIANAPOLIS COLTS DURING THE TONY DUNGY, PEYTON MANNING ERA,AND AUTHOR OF THE JERSEY EFFECT
A SPECIAL INVITATION TO BUSINESS LEADERS AND COMMUNITY RESIDENTS JOIN US FOR COFFEE AND PASTRIES AT FIRST UNITED METHODIST 1035 Market Street, DAYTON, TN 37321 MONDAY, AUGUST 13 AT 7:30 AM
ALSO HEAR DARRIN GRAY OF ALL PRO DAD
The National fatherhood program founded by Tony Dungy, former Indianapolis Colts head coach
CO-AUTHORS: Ken Turner of High Impact Teens and Stephen Copeland of Sports Spectrum Magazine
EVENTS FOR AUGUST 11-13, 2012
Saturday at 6:30 PM – UTC Finely Stadium 1826 Carter Street Chattanooga, TN 37408
High School Football Jamboree – Hear Hunter Smith speak at approximately 6:30 PM. Get a book, get an autograph, a mini poster, see some great high school football. The address is 1826 Carter Street Chattanooga, TN 37408.
HEAR HUNTER SMITH AND DARRIN GRAY
Sunday at 9:00 AM – First United Methodist Church 1035 Market Street, Dayton, TN 37321 Sunday at 10:45 AM – New Union Baptist Church 4060 Double S Road, Dayton, TN 37321
Sunday from 4:00-7:00 PM – The “ONE Youth Rally” at Roane State Community College, 276 Patton Lane, Harriman, TN 37748
7:30-8:30 AM – Community and business leaders are invited to a special meet and greet with Hunter Smith and Darrin Gray, coffee and pastries provided and a presentation regarding our outreach to youth in our community and beyond at First United Methodist Church, 1035 Market Street, Dayton, TN 37321.
Come meet Hunter Smith and Darrin Gray. Breakfast pastries and coffee provided. Get a book, learn more about the Jersey Effect and hear a special presentation about our local outreach ministry to at-risk youth called High Impact Teens.
10:00 AM – Spring City Middle School assembly. (Private)
12:30 PM – Roane County High School P3 Leadership.
Get Involved – Support Our Outreach
For more information contact:High Impact Teens, PO Box 1325, Dayton TN 37321 * (423) 381-0018 * www.highimpactteens.org
1. Become a monthly partner. Our ministry is funded by individuals, businesses and churches who give monthly.
2. Make a one-time donation.
3. Sponsor a gift to supply The Jersey Effect Books for a football team.
After twenty-one years in church youth ministry I established an outreach ministry in 2008 with a key focus on reaching troubled youth in the community of Indianapolis, Indiana. Our ministry moved to Tennessee in July 2010 and I continue to minister to high-risk and fatherless youth.