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inspirational speaking

7 States, 6 Speaking Engagements, and A Whole Lotta Fun

Chet McDoniel and daughter, Hannah, making funny faces.On June 26th, we set out on another marathon trip to speak six different times in a two week period.  The first part of the trip was spent in Tennessee speaking to three different churches and twice on the Lipsomb University Lectureship called, “Summer Celebration.”  Summer Celebration was tons of fun as we got to see many familiar faces, and I got to hear some great singing groups.  The picture you see is of my daughter, Hannah, helping me great people after one of our presentations.  We were having fun making faces at each other, and she is always the star of the show.

After our Tennessee engagements were done, we hit the road for Kansas City were I got to speak at the Teenage Conference hosted by Children’s Mercy Hospital of Kansas City.  There, I spoke to many teens (and their families) who all had experienced life-changing medical events within the past year.  These teens were by far my favorite crowd to speak to as they were not only attentive, but could very easily identify with the challenges that I’ve faced.  In fact, I joked several times about “preaching to the choir” as some of them had dealt with more difficult situations than I have.  Their questions were so insightful, and I came away so blessed to have been able to share my story with them.

Next up for us, a quick trip to downtown Fort Worth to speak for the Social Security Administration on overcoming challenges and choosing happiness.  Then, it’s on to Wichita, KS to preach at a chapel service at a camp for young adults who have muscular distrophy.

I love my job!

Video – Chocoholicfest 2009 – Letting God Show His Strengths Through Our Weaknesses

On February 11, 2009, I spoke to over 150 tweens and teens at the Chocoholic Fest at the Alpine Church of Christ in Longview, TX.  They were a wonderful group, and despite having eaten as much chocolate as they could handle, they were very attentive.  As the festival is near Valentine’s Day every year, my topic was “Love God, Love Others.”  I truly believe that once we learn the good nature of God, and we act on that knowledge by serving others, only then can we truly learn to love everyone around us.  Here is a clip from the evening about how our happiness can only come when we let go of our worries and trust God to use us in His service.  (The passage in the video is from John 9 in The Message.)


Here are some pictures from the event: 

Nothing Like Speaking at Home

Last night, I had the pleasure of speaking to the 24/7 High School Youth Group at my home congregation, Richland Hills Church of Christ.  Not only was I asked to speak, but I got to have my dad with me for our “All He Needs for Heaven” presentation, and I was given the opportunity to lead worship as well.  The evening was a blast, and the students were so encouraging to worship with and to get to talk to.  With their hands in the air, they praised at the top of their lungs, and I could tell that their joy was coming from deep within their souls.  It was a wonderfully relaxing atmosphere, and the group’s passion for living a God-filled life was evident all around us.  

It felt great to “be at home.”  Joni, Hannah, and I attend Richland Hills, and speaking there always feels so right since we’re very literally talking to our family.  Last night had a first for me, too, as I got to lead instrumental worship.  I had a blast, and the band was wonderful to work with.  I love that we can celebrate and worship our God in so many different ways, and I look forward to a lifetime of praising God in whatever way I can.

Marathon Weekend

This past weekend, my dad and I hit the road on Saturday to travel first to West Monroe, LA.  We spoke on Sunday morning to the White’s Ferry Rd Church of Christ.  The worship service was amazing.  What a joyous people!  I could feel the joy from the moment we walked in, throughout the worship service (which I had the privilege to lead), and all the way until we left.  I really enjoyed working with their praise team, and we heard from so many afterwards about how much they enjoyed our presentation.

On Sunday evening, we headed to Vicksburg, MS, to speak to the Bypass Church of Christ.  This church has a very unique history as it is a merger between a predominantly white Church of Christ and a predominantly black Church of Christ.  I truly admire them as they have learned to put diversity aside and worship God side-by-side.  They are reaching the lost, and we had a great time presenting our story as they were a very enthusiastic audience.

After two presentations on Sunday, we drove to Jackson, MS, for a Monday morning keynote to kick off the annual Mississippi Head Start Association meeting.  We got to present to over 200 difference-makers who work with and inspire children, ages 0-5, every day.  They work with children with all different kinds of needs to prepare them for elementary school.  I really admire their work, and felt it a privilege to “inspire those who inspire.”  Even at 8:30AM, they were a GREAT crowd, and they clapped so loud while I was singing, “Standing Outside the Fire” that I thought the roof was going to lift right off the building.

The weekend was truly inspiring and motivational, but not just for those who heard us…my dad and I came away uplifted, and we have great admiration for all three groups and the work they are doing.

Now…it is time for a vacation.  Joni, Hannah and I leave tomorrow for Disney World…a welcomed break!