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Topic: Am I Qualified?
Message: Posted by: Todd Lamanske (Sep 28, 2004 01:13PM)
I have been wanting to put together a "Gospel" show for several years. Right now I do a lot of corporate and private events. But I would really like to start doing shows for Churches.

Here is what is bothering me, I don't feel like I am that well read on the Bible. I didn't become a Christian until later in life so I don't have the normal Sunday School foundation that many who grew up in the Church have. So, I guess I feel like maybe I am not qualified to do these types of shows.

Then, part of me thinks that that is satan working on me, trying to convince me that I shouldn't do it.

I guess I feel like I'm not the best Christian. I fail every day. I know we all do, but I'm just struggling with this. I think I could offer a good show that would potentially reach some lost people, but I just want to make sure that I am doing it for the right reasons, not just for another market to profit from.

Any thoughts?

Todd Lamanske
Message: Posted by: Doug Peters (Sep 28, 2004 02:18PM)
[quote]On 2004-09-28 14:13, Todd Lamanske wrote:
I guess I feel like I'm not the best Christian. I fail every day. I know we all do, but I'm just struggling with this.[/quote]Now this is a message (i.e., that struggling with failure is a legitimate part of the Christian experience) that the [i]saved[/i] need to hear! :)
[quote]I think I could offer a good show that would potentially reach some lost people, but I just want to make sure that I am doing it for the right reasons, not just for another market to profit from.[/quote]One way to make sure that your motives are pure is to do the first ten shows [i]pro bono[/i] and then re-assess the message/response.
Message: Posted by: Somecreative Stagename (Sep 28, 2004 06:14PM)
I would say... if you're asking about these issues, then your heart is in the right place.

As you know, we all fail. It's the people who fail to realize this who are the ones who shouldn't be teaching.

Ultimately, the #1 ingredient you want to see in a teacher is LOVE. If you have a loving heart and a burning desire to share the gospel, you have what it takes. The knowledge will come. Pray and seek the Holy Spirit in guiding you. Remember, it's not going to be through your ability that you impact lives, it will be Christ through you and there's no doubt HE has the ability.

Do keep in mind, as a teacher, you're going to be held to a higher standard. Yes we all stumble, but when you lead or teach, your potential for causing your brother to stumble is much greater. When you are living your Christianity incognito, your potential for causing a brother to stumble is VERY low.

Also, I would have to agree, it's satan telling you you're not capable. He wants to do what he can to keep you from living within the will of God. Turn from that voice and lean on the understanding you get from the Holy Spirit.

God Bless,
Message: Posted by: thegospelmagicman (Sep 28, 2004 06:37PM)

Paul and Doug have already posted some great comments and suggestions. I would also suggest that you try doing what I sometimes do when I am trying to figure out what God would have me do. Let it be known that you are looking to book some Gospel Magic Shows. Pray about them, ask God to provide them. Plan what you will do. Study God's Word and make sure you are well versed in your Gospel presentation. Then see what doors the Lord opens for you. If the opportunity presents itself, open the door and walk through it. Evaluate what kind of response you receive. Was it well received? Did it have an imoact - Did it change anyone's life (did they accept Christ)? How do you think it went? Did you feel at ease in presenting the Gospel? Some of these questions can only be answered after you have done several shows. And sometimes presenting the Gospel is hard - it can be the hardest show you'll ever do. Pray about it. Do you sense the Lord leading you to continue?

All of us as Christians, fail miserably each day. I once heard a pastor say that a Christian is like a beggar. He has found the source of food. We are just one beggar telling another beggar where to find food. In this case SALVATION.

Hope this is of some help and encouragement.

The Gospel Magic Man
Message: Posted by: T. Lamanske (Sep 28, 2004 07:57PM)
Thanks to all for your positive and encouraging words. I hate to admit that I haven't prayed nearly enough about this but it has been kind of gnawing at me lately. I just can't shake the feeling that I have been given this gift for a reason. I should be using it to glorify the Lord and I'm not.

Thanks again and I will just keep praying about it and see what doors open for me (and Christ).

God bless,

Message: Posted by: BroDavid (Sep 29, 2004 09:27AM)

I cant't improve much on the advice that you have received so far, but I can certainly confirm the validity of it. And I applaud your desire to Glorify the Lord with your gifts!

When I first came to Christ at age 46, after being in magic for a number of years, I thought "no big deal", I will just do Christian illusions. And I did, but was sorely convicted that I was doing it for my Glory, more than God's. Once that conviction came, I examined myself and my perfromances and found it be be all too true. So I stopped doing magic for about 8 years. Only when a friend asked for my help with an evangelistic team, was I able to use magic with a new perspective; God's Glory first!

And now, after over fourteen years as a Christian, I still consider myself a baby in the faith. And at first, I was pretty sure that my only purpose was to be a "bad example of a Christian" so that others could point to me and learn from my mistakes. Through God's Grace, I no longer believe that as my primary goal. Although I am still a man who makes far too many mistakes, I am still just a man. And my Sin nature is ever with me. The only thing that keeps me from falling more often that I do, is constant prayer and an eye towards Glory.

Honor God, and He will Honor you. Curse Him, and you will be will cursed.. This is a simple truth that the world can never understands, and a believer should never forget.

As for knowing the Bible well, we are called to store up God's Word in our hearts. So we should know as much as we can. That said, I don't think that any of us, knows as much as we could. I talk to a lot of Pastors, and a topic of dicsussion at many Pastor's retreats is really a lament that they don't spend enough time in the Word. I don't take that as an excuse for not reading my Bible, any more more than I use some one else's sin as an excuse for my own.

I guess I am just saying that you are not alone, and that you don't have to be a theologian to serve God.

Pray and listen. Honor God, and give Him the Glory. Whether we are talking magic, or just life in general, I think that just about sums it up.

God Bless!

Message: Posted by: paulmagic (Sep 29, 2004 11:05AM)

If you are concerned about the "quality" of your message (doctrine etc.) then run through your routine with someone who you feel is matured in the faith. You don't have to reveal the secrets behind each illusion but explain what you are trying to teach / illustrate and see if they have a problme with anything. That will give you some reassurance.

One other suggestion is closely related to that which Doug and others brought up. Weave your performance around your testimony and normal struggle. The message will be all the more powerful because it very real to you and it will show.

I can just imagine you now explaining through magic God's grace in taking away your sin, or how what seems impossible is made possible by the power and love of God! A few weeks ago I did some show that revolv ed around the theme of with man it is impossible but with God all things are possible.

Personally I think you have an edge over people like me. You do corporate functions - you must be very experienced already. As for people like me, yeah I may know my theology better than the average Christian but I have so much work to do in terms of magic skills. But for you, all you need is a simple message (no theological gymnastics needed) which God through His Spirit will give you if you ask (since your motives are pure). Then your skill kicks in and I see a wonderful gospel show.

Keep praying and preparing and be a blessing!

Message: Posted by: Daniel Faith (Sep 29, 2004 07:07PM)
God doesn't call the qualified.
He qualifies the called.

Listen to your heart....someone's knocking!
Message: Posted by: RevJohn (Sep 29, 2004 09:00PM)
I ran into this a while back and I think it fits your question pretty well:

Think youíre unqualified to minister to other people? Consider this:

Moses stuttered.
Davidís armor didnít fit.
John Mark was undependable.
Hosea married a prostitute.
Amos only had experience as a fig tree pruner.
Jacob was a liar.
David had an affair.
Solomon had too much money.
Abraham was too old.
Timothy had ulcers.
Joseph was a nuisance.
Paul was ugly.
Peter was a coward.
Lazarus was dead.
John was self-righteous.
Jesus was homeless.
Naomi was a widow.
Jonah was disobedient.
Miriam was a gossip.
Gideon and Thomas were doubters.
Jeremiah was suicidal.
Elijah suffered from depression.
Paul was a murderer.
So was Moses.
Not to mention David.
John the Baptist dressed funny.
Martha was a worrywart.
Samson needed a haircut.
Noah had a drinking problem.
Moses had a short fuse.
Zacchaeus was very short.
David was only a teenager.
So was Mary, the mother of Jesus.
So was Daniel.
So were many others who were used by God.
Message: Posted by: Al Kazam the Magic Man (Sep 30, 2004 03:50AM)
Hi Todd,

I'm with the others. If we all waited until we were perfect before we could do anything for the Lord we'd all still be waiting. At least me!

One thing you can do is learn a couple of Christian routines and try them out on people and look at the reaction. Honestly for me, I don't have a lot of experience with "Preaching to the Choir" with my magic. Mostly it has been in non church situations. If your main purpose is to reach out to non believers you could try out your routines on them and depending on the reaction you probably would be able to figure out if you'd like to enter into the realm of being a "Christian magician".

All the best and God bless,

Message: Posted by: DivotMaker (Nov 1, 2004 09:41AM)
I concur with JoJo, there's no sense in waiting, but I think if you take that giant step in faith, God will bless you. Some words of encouragement found in

Psalms 18:32 It is God that girdeth me with strength, and maketh my way perfect. (KJV)...
Message: Posted by: ChrisG (Nov 1, 2004 09:37PM)
Todd says,"Here is what is bothering me, I don't feel like I am that well read on the Bible. I didn't become a Christian until later in life so I don't have the normal Sunday School foundation that many who grew up in the Church have. So, I guess I feel like maybe I am not qualified to do these types of shows."

The only way to be well read is to read. Pick a Book, Chapter or Verse and read, reread and ponder in your heart until the words come alive. As you read and pray understanding will come. Confidence will come as you learn.
I once heard someone say that he studied his Bible the same amount of time he spent practicing his trade (magic). I felt that was good advice. If we are to deliver an important message such as a personal testimony or the Gospel of Christ we must be prepared spiritually and professionally.
I pray you will be at peace with whatever decision is made.
Message: Posted by: atucci (Nov 2, 2004 06:24AM)
Todd - if you truly feel the Lord is calling you to this ministry, then begin to move forward and pray for strength from the Holy Spirit. You know in the end, there was really only One who was truly qualified to teach His father's Word (and he was born 2000 years ago).

Just remember his two greatest commandments, love God first & love your neighbor as you love yourself. Everything else will follow as He intends it to.

God Bless my brother,

Tony T

BTW - let me know of your decision as Iwill include you on my prayer list.
Message: Posted by: Carrie Sue (Dec 18, 2004 08:29PM)
And of course, never forget this advice:

Trust the quality of what you know, not the quantity. If you can explain the plan of salvation to people in two to five minutes, you can be well used of the Lord to put His message out there in your shows.

Read Duane Laflin's book, "Greater Gospel Magic," and from it you will learn that you can pick different characters, in a sense, for gospel magic. You can be a good entertainer who is also a Christian. You can be a good entertainer who knows a few gospel illustrations that can be stuck into a show (that's me). Or you can be the kind of gospel magician where every piece has a Biblical message to it.

There's a place for all of those in Gospel Magic.