Hello Everyone!2011 is nearly over! Can you believe it? Just had memorials for the tenth anniversary of 9/11/01…TENTH! Where has the time gone? Time is such a strange thing…really it is. How often do we notice that some irksome things which last only five minutes seem like a half hour of drudgery but the more agreeable things that last thirty minutes only seem like five measly minutes.
In some ways it seems that I've only been married nine days and in other ways nine years, but in reality, only nine months have passed since Mar and I said our vows and shared our first kiss. So many new blessings are ours to share with you, so continue reading below and I'll detail them out for you!
Third Consecutive #1For this month of October, "I'm Going Through, Jesus" is my third #1 song in a row in The Christian Voice Magazine. To be honest, I've decided that God is showing me how little I know and have to do with what He has planned for my life. If you had told me two years ago that I'd have three songs that have achieved the airplay that these have in my LIFETIME, I'd have thought that you needed psychiatric attention, and quick. What makes it even more amazing is that MPM has neither the funds nor the interest in paying for radio promotion. This is primarily because of the cost, but also because we feel that there are better ways to spend our funds in more direct avenues of ministry. Thus, our amazement in the way the Lord has blessed our efforts at ministry with these accomplishments is without measure. We just sit back and watch Him work.
Once again, thank you for your support and thank you to the DJs who choose to send our music out across the airwaves. This honor is a tool that we will use to open doors for ministry and further the Kingdom of our Lord.
Upcoming EventsOctober 10 - Hot Springs, AR - 2:00PM - The Atrium
October 11 - Memphis, TN - 2:00PM - Ave Maria
October 11 - Memphis, TN - 6:00PM - The Parkview
October 12 - Ballwin, MO - 6:30PM - Briarcrest Estates
October 13 - Springfield, IL - 6:00PM - Seasons At Pine Creek
October 14 - Munster, IN - 2:00PM - Hartsfield Village
October 14 - Plymouth, IN - 6:00PM - Wedding Rehearsal
October 15 - Plymouth, IN - 2:00PM - Wedding
October 16 - Paoli, IN - 9:30AM - Paoli Christian Church
October 16 - Bloomfield, IN - 6:30PM - Bloomfield Baptist
October 17 - Padukah, KY - 2:00PM - Morningside
October 17 - Padukah, KY - 6:30PM - Jackson Oaks
October 18 - Jackson, TN - 2:00PM - Regency Retirement Village
October 19 - Hot Springs, AR - 2:00PM - Garrett Manor
October 22 - Whitehouse, TX - 6:00PM - TASCA (with The Hubbard Family)
October 29 - Alexandria, LA - 6:00PM - Riverview Baptist Church (Gospel Tones Concert)
October 30 - Ball, LA - 10:30AM - Fellowship Chapel (Gospel Tones Concert)
October 30 - Ruby, LA - 6:00PM - Pine Grove Baptist Church (Gospel Tones Concert)
November 4-6 - Canton, TX - 11AM-5PM - Canton Marketplace
November 6 - Canton, TX - 8:30AM - Morning Devotionals in the Food Court
November 10-11 - Rusk, TX - Prison Revivals
November 12 - Quitman, TX - 6:30PM - First United Methodist Church
November 13 - Diboll, TX - 6:30PM - Prison Concert
November 20 - Dawsonville, GA - 11:00AM - Hilltop Tabernacle
November 24 - Martha's Birthday - contact her HERE with birthday wishes!
November 27 - Dawsonville, GA - 11:00AM - McKee's Chapel UMC
December 4 - Newborn, GA - 6:00PM - Shiloh Baptist Church
December 14-15 - Nashville, TN - Cutting tracks for new project
December 16-17 - Nashville, TN - Recording initial vocals
December 19 - One-Year Wedding Anniversary!
December 19-January 6 - CHRISTmas Break
Get more details and full list of events HERE!
Gettin' The Ball To Rollin'...After our Georgia tour we'll head to Nashville, TN for the annual board meeting of Miles Pike Music and stay there for the following four days to begin the recording process of my new CD, "Walk Through The Pages"! This has been a dream that I have worked on for literally years (I've been planning it for at least three years, maybe four), and I cannot wait for you to hear the end result.
It will feature several songs written by my father, James Pike, plus a long list of other writers whom you will recognize, including: Greg Day, Phil Cross, Jeff Silvey, and Doug Riley. There isn't a weak song in the bunch and I can't wait to present them to you all!
Last ChanceThe Lord has blessed us in our efforts to have the funds for this next project ready before going into the studio and recording it. We're not all the way there yet, but we have enough set aside that we can go into the studio, cut tracks, and be able to write a check in full for that amount. We hope to finish it early next year, Lord willing, and you can still be a part of this project. We've given y'all this same opportunity in the previous newsletter, but we wanted to make it available one more time. You can donate toward this CD project, "Walk Through The Pages", and here's how:
~ $10 - A free digital download of the album, when it's released.
~ $25 - An advance copy of the CD, weeks before the masses.
~ $50 - An advance copy and a "Thank You" on the CD.~ $100 - All the above, plus autographed copies of all my current projects, and an autographed picture of me that is guaranteed to keep varmints out of your garden
~ $250 - All the above, plus a signed tracking sheet of my past #1 song, "Jesus Savior, Pilot Me" and another tracking sheet of your choice when the project is finished. PLUS an optional picture of me kissing your cheek.
~ $500 - All of the above, PLUS, I dedicate a song to you on my CD.
~ $750 - Exactly like the previous level, but you give me more money.
~ $1,000 - All of the above and you are mentioned as an executive producer of the album!
~ $2,500 - My wife and I come and spend the weekend with you. Cook your meals, make your beds, scrub the toilet, play with the kids, build a chicken coop, sit around the piano and sing, talk politics, or just visit. You have our full attention.
~ $5,000 - I will come and do a concert for you...ANYWHERE. Invite your friends, treat your church to a special event, have me sing on the hearth in your living room to just you, just bring me out and I sing. Period. Theoretically, this level is a smart choice economically. You could charge your guests and make your money back.
~ $10,000 - You get to come and sing on my CD. Don't worry if you can't sing. We'll work it out.
~ $100,000 - You get all of the above, PLUS if you ever need a kidney, you can have the bass singer's from The Gospel Tones.
~ $500,000 - ALL of the above, AND...you get...ME! 8AM-5PM... for a month! My wife wants you to take this one.
You can make donations HERE.
Booking and Private Lessons and Weddings - Oh my!Well, let's wrap this part up briefly:
1. Martha & I have been busy taking calls and making calls about concerts into 2012. Our calendar is fuller than I've ever seen so far ahead of time. If you have desire for a concert at your church, contact us soon to get your preferred date set aside. We look forward to many return dates as well as many new venues in the coming year! Click HERE for booking info.
2. Another thing that is filling up quickly is our private lesson schedule. We currently have students taking private voice and piano lessons from ages 4-68. If you or someone you know would be interested in honing their skills, we would love to work with them. Some may want to be better choir members, church soloists, or be able to play accompaniment for themselves. Whatever your need, we gear our lesson plans toward what you want.
Click HERE for more information.
3. Just a few days ago, we built a brand new page on the website in regard to wedding services. In the last few months, I've had numerous requests to either officiate a wedding service or provide special music. If you are interested in having me take part in your day, please click HERE to see that page.
Closing ThoughtsMartha and I were reading in II Samuel the other day. We came to the part in chapter 6 where David is joyfully moving the Ark of the Covenant back to Jerusalem. That is, joyful until Uzzah puts his hand on the Ark and God kills him. This is the Old Testament, so it's really not God's act of striking someone dead that made us stop and think. No, it's God striking someone dead who seemed to be doing a good thing, a needful thing, an honorable thing. The knee-jerk reaction for us, like David, was, "That's not fair!". After discussing it, we came to the conclusion that the main issue here was that the Ark of God -- the "Throne" of God, was not to be moved by a manmade cart and pulled by an animal. It was a job designated for four priests, and even those priests were not allowed to touch the Ark itself under penalty of death. (Read about it in Numbers 3,4, and 7 if you're curious like we were.) Not only Uzzah was at fault here. Every good Jew present should have known better than to handle the Ark of God in such a roughshod manner. But that's Old Testament (Old Covenant). Sure, it's interesting to talk about, but because of the grace and mercy we live under, bought by Jesus Christ, we don't much have to live in fear of God striking us dead when we are irreverent to the reality of His Presence. Right? Well... take a look at the New Testament, and you see God striking Ananias and Sapphira dead when they lied to the Spirit of God in Peter (Acts 5). Whether Old Testament or New Testament, Old Covenant or New Covenant, it is dangerous when sacred things become commonplace.
Somewhere along the line we've lost sight of the "fear" of God. Fear of God in the Bible is not talking about an evil fear or a spirit of fear ("God has not given us a spirit of fear…"). It's not like a fear of monsters or of evil or of all that is impure or immoral. It is like the fear we have of … electricity. Within our mortal bodies, electricity is immeasurably powerful and has the potential to do us harm. The secret to the fear is reverencing the power while using it in the appropriate way - a manner in which its power is exercised in our lives for good. We can fear God to the point of avoidance ("having the appearance of Godliness but denying its power" 2 Tim 3:5), or we can fear Him with a reverence and an awe that produces Godliness. Part of the awe that we experience as Christians is in the fact that God loves us. It's a thought that most Christians who were raised in church have heard all their lives. Sadly, many seem to become calloused and indifferent to it.
Sometimes, it's not an issue of the kind of fear we have for God, but rather, whether we fear Him at all. How many times do we label ourselves as "Christian" -- imitators of God as Ephesians 5 says -- and yet do not seek His guidance in the decisions of our lives? HE is the Lord of all we see; has given us everything we have, has made a way of forgiveness and complete salvation for us, and desires to be in OUR presence, amazing though it is. And yet we often go to church with wrong intentions. By going to church once a week we feel that we can get by the rest of the week without praying or studying the Word or thinking about the presence of God in our everyday activities. And when we do see His presence in some other Christian's life, we act calloused to it -- it doesn't move us and we're not excited for them. Church becomes our weekly "duty" and not an opportunity to worship and fellowship with believers.
"Seek ye first", "Go ye into all the world and preach the Gospel", "Upon this rock I will build MY kingdom" … all the kingdom-building verses don't say "Use your intellect", "Get a committee of the smart people together" and they don't even say "Get some family-friendly, Bible-based programs to start in your church". No, they say "Seek God." "Preach the Gospel." "Follow God's building plan for His church, not a human one." The difference between reverencing God's power -- fearing God -- in your church or not is the difference between using the power of a hand saw or using a chainsaw; using a screwdriver or using a drill; using a hammer or using a jackhammer; the difference in depending on the strength of man or the power of an intelligent designer. This is a very simple analogy but it is not man's power which can breach the gates of Hell with one word, restore an aching body, set a crazed mind at ease, mend a wrecked family, and reign on the throne of peace in a life that's surrounded by turmoil.
Look at where you are in your life and in your church. Are you living in the Stone Age, using crude, man-made tools while attempting to accomplish spiritual ends? Or are you working hand-in-hand with the Spirit of God, in His power constructing a formidable Kingdom that the gates of hell cannot prevail against? If your answer is feeble, unsure, and founded on the limitations of your fragile powers, then your contribution to the Kingdom will be minimal at best. I challenge you, as Martha and I were challenged by this Scripture, to fear the Lord, for it is the beginning of Wisdom and gives a truthful sense of our inadequacy before the presence of God. Take into consideration Who He is in contrast to who you are and you will find abundant reason to prostrate yourself and take into account every action of your life. There is no area of life that is not impacted by our fear of God. When we do not fear God, finances are wasted thoughtlessly, marriages are expendable, sermons are malnourishing, relationships are fragile, and ministry is self reliant. When we do view God in His rightful place, finances are sowed bountifully, marriages are durable, sermons are meaty, relationships are built on the Rock, and ministry is undertaken with the assurance that the Lord gives the increase.
Thanks for sharing this devotion with me. I pray it stirred you in your spirit as it did us.
Til next time,
Miles & Martha
Send booking requests to firstname.lastname@example.org
or call 903-586-8605.