October 3, 2017 7:52 PM

Get into a Christmas mood-in October-through Treasures of Hope

October 3, 2017 7:52 PM
October 3, 2017 7:52 PM

Christmas is around the corner and at Dallas Leadership Foundation we’re already gearing up for the 20th anniversary of Treasures of Hope (TOH) on Dec. 11-15 at the Plaza of the Americas.

We have so many memories about this signature outreach event, which has helped thousands of families over the years. We have binge-worthy stories to tell about getting toys to the shelves, pricing items, and watching how God used TOH to answer prayer after prayer. We can testify to how each year God has taken Treasures of Hope to deeper levels of service for families who need quality, affordable gifts. 

The Treasures of Hope Christmas Store also has become a go-to place where families can interact with participating social service agencies and learn about an array of benefits. The event also has become the gathering place for some of the most wonderful Christmas singing in Dallas-Fort Worth, and each night has been bathed in prayer and ministry through the chapel services.

We’re grateful for having the capacity to offer Treasures of Hope to the community each Christmas season. Not only does TOH serve families, it gives people and churches throughout the area an opportunity to spread the love and grace of our Lord Jesus Christ in a tangible way.

This year, consider getting involved. You can do so in three ways. You can set up a TOH Collection Box at your office or church. You can purchase items from the catalog and your purchases will be shipped to DLF and used to stock the Christmas Store. You can also make a cash donation online to support event expenses for Treasures of Hope.

Whatever you choose, learn more by going to the Treasures of Hope page on dlftx.org. With you, we can make TOH17 a special one!

September 26, 2017 3:48 PM

While the world roars, 5 steps to keep your peace

September 26, 2017 3:48 PM
September 26, 2017 3:48 PM

 

Sometimes the hardest thing to do is to maintain a sense of peace. The world roars with words and behaviors that create headaches and spike blood pressure. Get engrossed by the daily news feeds, the social networks, or even the drivers who cut us off during our morning commute, and we risk losing our sense of peace. If we add marital or financial problems, a cycle of homelessness, worries about aging parents, restlessness at a low-paying job, concerns are gang members wooing a teenager, and a multitude of other life challenges, we don't walk from peace to anger. We sprint.

Anger is like the gaping ditch we know is coming. We know it should be avoided. But once we flirt with anger that ditch draws closer. Passivity is no different. Passivity stands out like a dark closet. Once inside, the door slams, and we feel trapped by the inability to move or say anything. We grope in the darkness, feeling immobile and overrun by circumstances.

But peace? Peace takes eyes wide open. Peace takes radical dependence on the Holy Spirit. Paul tells us in Ephesians 4:1-4:

Therefore I, the prisoner united with the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of the calling to which you have been called. 
Always be humble, gentle and patient, bearing with one another in love, 
and making every effort to preserve the unity the Spirit gives through the binding power of shalom. 
There is one body and one Spirit, just as when you were called you were called to one hope. 
And there is one Lord, one trust, one immersion, and one God, the Father of all, who rules over all, works through all and is in all. (Complete Jewish Bible).
 
Paul says he's a prisoner of God and called to Him. And that's the first step that tells us how to keep our peace. Neither anger nor passivity rules our lives. As Jesus followers, we've submitted ourselves to Him and not the chaotic press of cable news or social media sites. Our agenda is the one He sets. If we don't know His agenda for a situation, we ask. 
 
Second, worldly anger and passivity don't fit into Paul's list of attributes for Jesus followers called by the Lord. 
 
Third, this is where our actions come in. We must make "every effort to preserve the unity the Spirit gives through the binding power of shalom." What is shalom in Hebrew thought? Completeness. Soundness. Welfare. Peace. (See this article on peace.) We can't afford to lose peace. It's not like a piece of clothing we can afford to throw away accidentally. Peace is a spiritual necessity that undergirds us like the mountains.
 
Fourth, we're not called to the places of anger and passivity. We're called to one body, one Spirit, and one hope. Paul's words tell us that God calls us to higher spiritual places. This means we need to set the GPS of our souls above the clamor around us. We have to cling to the truths of God's heavenly realm or else we'll sink in the mire of this earthly one.
 
Fifth, Paul says there's one Lord, one trust, one immersion, and one God. And He alone provides peace. In Him, we have put our trust and displayed our faith at baptism. Our faith blooms right here. In Him. He rules over all and works through all. In other words, He's got this. Nothing surprises Him. Nothing escapes Him. What lies in the human heart remains open before Him. The Lord misses nothing -- including our short-sighted decisions to opt for anger or passivity when He generously offers us His shalom.
 
To engage with other Jesus-followers seeking to show shalom in the leadership God has called us to, please contact us at dlftx.org.

 Photo by Nik Shuliahin on Unsplash

September 19, 2017 11:51 PM

Get ready for Praise! in the Park

September 19, 2017 11:51 PM
September 19, 2017 11:51 PM

We're gearing up to celebrate men and women who have seen God dramatically change their lives. Praise! in the Park starts at 11 a.m. on Oct. 21 at Jubilee Park Community Center, 907 Bark St. in Dallas. The event is a wonderful time for family, friends and the community at large to honor men and women who are thriving to the glory of God after being previously incarcerated. 

The celebration is hosted by Dallas Leadership Foundation's DLF Reentry program, which sees an 8.3 percent recidivism rate among previously incarcerated men who have completed our program. Fifty percent of the men who participate in our transitional program keep a job for more than a year. 

 

Through DLF Reentry, we mentor incarcerated men and women working in partnership with local churches and organizations that serve the prison population.  Operating a pre- and post-entry program through designated dorms in Hutchins State Jail and Bridgeport Pre-Parole Transfer Facility, DLF supports individuals seeking a fresh start by walking side by side with them to develop individual service plans designed to help them successfully return to society.

If you're interested in volunteering for Praise! in the Park or providing financial support, register at dlftx.org or contact Katie Miholland by email: kmilholland@dlftx.org or by phone: 214.777.5520.

September 12, 2017 11:12 AM

When we give to others, we take the trust test

September 12, 2017 11:12 AM
September 12, 2017 11:12 AM

Giving is one of the exquisite opportunities we have to serve human beings. Giving also is a unique self-test. It reveals our level of trust, faith hope, holy expectation, self-sacrifice, mutual understanding, neighborliness, compassion, kindness, thoughtfulness, leadership, and much more. 

Our view of generosity syncs with how we view God. If we see Him as the Creator of all resources, if we see Him as a God who provides for us, if we see His way of doing life as our gold standard, every day we align ourselves more closely to heaven's infinite levels of giving. Best of all, we come into a deeper understanding of how giving reflects the beat of God's heart.

If we view ourselves as the only sustainers of our lives, we stifle acts of generosity. We don't look to God to replenish us. We take an extreme perspective that denies God's overall provision to us and rejects chances to give to others because our resources are insufficient. Finite. We can't give to others because we don't have a back-up. In our eyes, our financial pantries are too bare to share. The Bible addresses this I-don't-have-enough mentality by saying:

The Bible addresses this I-don't-have-enough mentality by saying:

"Cast your bread upon the waters,
    for you will find it after many days" (Ecc. 11:1).

"Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. 
Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life." (1 Tim. 6:17-19).
 
“And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus" (Phil. 4:19).

In other words, as Jesus followers we give as He directs. He identifies opportunities to give and grants us wisdom on how to do it. We give as an act of service to Him, and our giving doesn't rock our trust that He will meet the needs that we may have.

On Wednesday, North Texans will have a chance to give during North Texas Giving Day. Dallas Leadership Foundation is participating, as we mobilize leaders across cultural and political lines. We hope you consider giving to our nonprofit organization to help us as we reach out to Dallas families. For more than two decades, we've labored in Dallas neighborhoods to identify and affirm leaders and help them transform the places where they live. Even if you don't give to us, we hope you still give.It really is more blessed to give than to receive.

It really is more blessed to give than to receive.

Photo courtesy of Aaron Burden on Unsplash

 

September 5, 2017 7:53 PM

Keep praying, keep serving, keep loving

September 5, 2017 7:53 PM
September 5, 2017 7:53 PM

The cascading events of the last few weeks can remind each of us – if we let them – of our call to service as Jesus followers. It doesn’t matter where we serve, only that we serve where God assigns. There’s plenty to do.

  • Evacuees need ongoing support as they try to rebuild their lives after Hurricane Harvey. Physical, financial, and spiritual support will be needed for months and years to come. (At Dallas Leadership Foundation, we're donating our summer clothing drive to help evacuees. To donate items, call 214.777.5520 or give funds at
  • Young, unauthorized immigrants known as Dreamers, will no longer be able to apply for protection through the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. President Donald Trump wants the U.S. Congress to replace the program, which expires in March 2018, with new legislation. Regardless of our political views about immigration law, there is and will be, a human cost. People will need ministry.
  • The tensions between the U.S. and North Korea continues. Compassionate and strategic intercession is needed for our leaders and leaders of the nations.
  • Irma barrels through the Caribbean as an immense Category 5 hurricane, as of Tuesday. Intercession is needed for God’s protection -- for our country and all nations within the path of this storm.

Again, there’s plenty of footwork and knee-work needed at this hour by the church of Jesus. And it’s for such times as these.

 

Photo by Matheus Ferrero on Unsplash

 

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Connect with DLF

Dallas Leadership Foundation
3101 Greenwood, DALLAS, TX 75204
MAILING ADDRESS
P.O. Box 227455, Dallas, tx 75222
PHONE 214-777-5520
FAX 214-777-5525