xmlns:fb='http://www.facebook.com/2008/fbml'> Thinking Out Loud : August 2010


Sunday, August 29, 2010

The Past 2 Weeks

Pastor Nimmons driving a Corvette

Its been at least 2 weeks since we wrote our last blog and that is because we have been heavily involved in ministry work in the vineyard. We begin on ministry trek on August 20-22 at Apostolic Assembly of Jesus Christ in Chicago, IL; pastored by Bishop Jerry Jones. This was their Youth Revival Weekend and we were the keynote speaker. During this weekend there was a Friday evening Youth Service, a Saturday Afternoon Car Show and the weekend's activites culminiated with us ministering in both the 12noon and 5:30pm Sunday services. We want to send a special thanks to Bishop & First Lady Jones for opening up their church to us as well as Eld Sam Reeves for the invitation. We enjoyed ourselves immensely!

Here's a few pics from the weekend.
Eld Sam Reeves Jr. emeecing the weekend's activities
Psalmist Tiffany Nimmons glorying the Lord through song
Pastor Nimmons ministering during Sunday Morning service
Car enthusiasts enjoying the show
Buick Lacrosse
Tiffany Nimmons relaxing in a Corvette
Joe Miles - Vice President Chicago Crossroads Corvette Club

Here is a clip from my first ever drive behind the wheel of a Corvette

Here's a clip from our Sunday Morning message entitled, "A Peculiar Praise."

We had a great time in Chicago last weekend, God tremedously blessed! Shoutout to the church family of Apostolic Assembly of Jesus Christ. They showed us some great hospitality and we truly appreciated their welcoming spirit.

Then this weekened we were invited to do a couple of workshops at Messais Temple Youth Camp at Michindoh camp site. This camp began on Thursday August 26th and concluded on August 29th. Myself & Eld. David Hollis were the two speakers for the camp.

The two workshops that we taught dealt with the evils of the music industry. These two sessions were an extension of our "Sleeping With The Enemy" Bible lessons we taught during our Young Apostolic Student for Christ bible classes. The youth were really intrigued by the information that we provided, and many referred to our session as "life changing." The services were just as powerful as well. The Friday night service in particular was so highly annoited that it went from 7:30pm until well after Midnight. Two young people were filled with the holyghost as well.

Here is a clip from a song that sung during the Friday evening serice called "Heal Your People"

We truly thank God for these ministry opportunities and we pray that the what was shared over these past few weeks were a blessing to these two churches respectlvely.  I also pray that you are blessed by the photos and videos of these past two weeks. We are thankful to God for the opportunity to minister and are grateful to be able to share what God has been doing in our lives.

Stay tuned, because God definitely has more in store!

Pastor Nimmons

Sunday, August 15, 2010

The N' Word

Dr. Laura Schlessinger
The latest in the saga of the N' word leads us to popular radio talk show host Dr. Laura Schlessinger. According to reports, Talk radio host Dr. Laura Schlessinger has issued an apology for saying the N-word several times in an on-air conversation with a caller who she said was "hypersensitive" to racism. When a caller asked if the N-word was offensive, Schlessinger said "black guys say it all the time." She did not direct the epithet at the woman, but said she used it to suggest how often she hears it, and that it should not automatically be cause for offense. Schlessinger said on her website Wednesday that she was wrong in using the word for what she called an attempt to make a philosophical point. She said she "realized I had made a horrible mistake, and was so upset, I could not finish the show."  I'm not here to question whether Dr. Laura's apology was sincere or not, only God knows that. But, what concerns me is how as much and as often a controversy this word has caused for other ethnicity's that have used it, why hasn't anyone wised up? I mean why do we still see talk show hosts, comedians, entertainers, politicians and the like still "slip" up and use this word given the ignorance of their peers? One would think that after Michael Richard's tirade in a comedy club a few years back and the backlash he received behind it, white America would never evoke its presence again. By the way, has anyone heard from Kramer lately? The careers that this word has ruined should be enough evidence to remove its use from the vocabularies of ever race and ethnicity's in the world.

Actor, Michael Richards -"Kramer"
But, was Dr. Laura right that because she's heard it said so much by black people that the sting of its use has somehow been removed? Is she right in  saying that because she's heard black folks call each other the N' word for so long; if nothing but for a term of endearment, that the venom of the word has forever been neutralized? I wonder is there is any truth to that statement? Could this be the reason for her Freudian Slip on her radio show? I always believed that we-as Black Americans, were just as culpable for the use and the mis-use of the N' word. Using it in songs, among friends, or whatever way we choose to use it as a community would prove detrimental to the overall perception of this blatantly derogatory word. Our constant use of this word is perceived by many as an open invitation for everyone to use it, thereby causing more controversies like this to arise. However, I still wonder about the frequency of this and how the backlash hasn't created more of an impression with those who might potentially use this word in open forum? To me this speaks to a more systemic problem rather than a racial one, inasmuch as it seems that the venom of this word has not reached the masses and this could be the reason for these slips ups in public view.

The venom or the sting of this word is tied directly to its origin. The roots of the N'word date back to slavery days and it was always considered derogatory. White slave masters called their black slaves by this word. It came to be known as someone who is "lazy, trifling, and shiftless" which is became unduly associated with "black people." Which is completely ironic, seeing as though this country was built on the backs of the very people this word was used to describe. So you can see how the sting of this word would still resonate with black people today, many of whom were not privy to its use on the slave plantations of the South in the early 1800's, but still find this word offensive. This definitely speaks to the power of the word as well, because even though it is now used as a term of endearment amongst blacks internally within their own circles, whenever it is used by someone outside of the black race the same venomous history that it is attached to rises up all over again. So what are we going to do?

Back in November of 2007 the NAACP came up with an initiative to "Bury the N'Word." This march was held in Detroit, MI. Thousands of people joined together to help bury this historically derogatory word. Here's a clip of the ceremony:

Out of this ceremony was suppose to come a solidarity and unity on the elimination of this word from our vocabulary. This ceremony sparked a nation-wide debate about the N'word and its use not just from people outside of the black race but even from within our own race of people. A young man by the name Jonathon McCoy; who I had the pleasure of meeting a few months ago, started a campaign to eliminate the N'Word from the vocabulary of Black America. Understanding that the only way that we can see real change as a community is for us to eliminate its use and then every other ethnicity and race will follow suite as well..

Here is a clip of his speech called "The Petition"

This clip has gotten over 1 million hits on YouTube and this should become an affirmation for us as a people. I agree with Jonathon that if we want to truly see this word eliminated from the vocabulary of other races than we have to commit to not using the word ourselves. Although, this obviously is not an easy thing to do, because again this word is used quite often within our own community. From Hip Hop artists to comedians, even though the intent of its use may not be entirely negative but its always in "poor taste." One such comedian who is notorious for its use during his comedy shows, was taught an important lesson on tolerance when he was removed from a performance because of audience intolerance of his use of the N'word. Comedian Eddie Griffin; during a 2007 performance in Miami Florida for Black Enterprise Magazine, was booted by the magazine's long time publisher Earl Graves for using the N' word. According to reports Earl Graves received a standing ovation for the comedian's removal, which could have been an insight into the black community's rising intolerance of the N'word.
Comedian Eddie Griffin

Are we nearing the end of its use? Not sure. No one knows what the future holds for this word. But, I was always taught as a child that it's not what you're called, but it is what you answer to! So, you can be called alot of things by people, but it only matters what you answer to that makes the difference.  I choose to completely ignore its use, inasmuch as not only do I not answer to it, but I don't believe it defines who I am. So, my interpretations is and has always been that any derogatory word is only offensive to those who are insecure enough to  feel they are identified by it. It is a matter of personal preference, which is really what it boils down too. Because in the grand scheme of things, it is only when we make the individual and personal choice to eliminate this word from our vocabulary then and only then will be start to see a change. Mahmta Ghandi said something quite remarkable regarding this subject of change; he says, "we have to be the change we want to see in the world." This simple statement makes everyone accountable for making the change we want to ultimately see in the entire world.

My question is what personal changes are you going to make in order to see change on a much larger scale? What ways are you trying to eliminate the use of this word from your vocabulary? Or do you feel that it doesn't need to be removed at all? 

Your thoughts?

Pastor Michael S. Nimmons

Thursday, August 12, 2010

A Special Thanks to @MaxExpoRadio

I know this is weekly blog and I don't normally include two posts in one week, especially considering the magnitude of our last post entitled "Congratulating Bishop" and saluting our pastor Bishop Charles Ellis on his elevation to Presiding Bishop of the Pentecostal Assemblies of the World, Inc. But, I wanted to send a special thanks to a group of people that we've recently partnered with in ministry work in the kingdom. 

I want to offer a special thanks to @MaxExpoRadio (twitter lingo) and Maximum Exposure Magazine for having us last night as a guest on their blogtalkradio program. We would like to give a special shout to Jamillah Herbet Lewis & Yuade Moore the CEO's of @MaxExpoRadio & Maxium Exposure Magazine as well as the two host Divine & Praiz. We had a great time last night sharing the word of God over the airwaves with our new partners in the gospel. And, we just wanted to write a special note to you all letting you know to keep up the great work you're doing for the kingdom.

Listen to internet radio with Maximum Exposure Mag on Blog Talk Radio

For the benefit of those who didn't not hear the show last evening, yesterday's topic was about subliminal messages in music particularily from such artists as Jay-Z, Beyonce, Rhianna, Kanye West, Enimem and the list goes on and on. The show itself dealt with a recent blog post that we wrote entitled is "Jay-Z a Mason?"
and in this blog post we addressed the question of Jay'Z Masonic affiliations.  In our post we asserted that we believe Jay-Z has already answered the question for myself and others regarding his Masonic affliliations in his music, videos, and clothing line which all appear to have incorporated the signs and symbols of Freemasonry within its subliminal messages. And, we still wonder why the question hasn't been answered by millions more or maybe it has and they just refuse to accept it? While at the same time Jay-Z continues to either evade or avoid the question of whether he-himself is a Mason. Well I learned a long time ago that if it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, then guess what...it's a duck!  And, what continues to concern us regarding critics of this or lets just call them "Jay-Z fans" is that they believe that all of this is coincidental or accidental that all of these signs point to Jay-Z being a devil worshipper of sorts. But, as I said on the show last evening at the very least if none of the Masonic or Illuminati stuff is true about him, the content of his music should be appalling enough never to listen to him again. And, for him to have the boldness to include in the song "Empire State of Mind" that "Jesus can't save you. Life starts when the church ends." That should be enough for him to have lost the sum total of his following from that statement alone. But, instead what many have done is defended this statement or attempted to rationalize away wrong, which in of itself is wrong. And, this shows you the kind of negative impact his music is having on the world, but what is even more disturbing the impact Jay-Z music is having in the church.

What is dangerous is how young people in the church are coming to Jay-Z defense. Subsequently, it causes us to wonder about the credibility of the youth defending this man.  We often attach "in the church" to those who we believe are "in the church" or when we want to make the differentation from the church and the world, but the question really becomes "is the church in them?" Because if the church was really "in them" then there could be no way that Jay-Z would be romaniticized after an indefensible and blasphemous remark like "Jesus can't save you!" The church of old would have publically condemned Jay-Z and artist like him who dare to take the Lord's name in vain, thus causing a ripple effect in the world and maybe their star wouldn't shine as bright. But, today is definitley a different day and wrong is seen as right and right is seen as wrong. All signs point to Jesus Christ return. Needless to say, there is still yet more ground to cover on this subject and we look forward to coming back on and continuing this ongoing topic with our friends @MaxExpoRadio.

We encourage you to check out their awesome website www.maxexpomag.com. This is a great Christian website, youth orientated, relevant, trendy as well as substantive. Check this website out there is a lot of great information for you to access when you log on. We definitely need more Christian sites that cater to the needs of today's young Christians, and Maximum Exposure Magazine is definitely one site which should be emulated by everyone.

Thanks again for the invitation and I look forward to partnering with you and your magazine in the very near future! Be Blessed!

Pastor Nimmons

Monday, August 9, 2010

Congratulations Bishop!!

What a great way to return from a week hiatus of writing for our weekly blog the Pastor's Perspective, with some great news to share with our readers. We are very pleased and excited to announce that our pastor Bishop Charles H. Ellis III; pastor of Greater Grace Temple in Detroit, MI, is now the newly elected Presiding Bishop of the Pentecostal Assemblies of the World, Inc. We wanted to take this opportunity to send a special congratulatory message to our pastor Bishop Ellis, and at the same time bring you; our readers, up to speed on our pastor's elevation to the leadership of this historic pentecostal organization.

Our pastor Bishop Ellis; who was formerly the Asst Presiding Bishop of the P.A.W., was unanimously voted and elected by the general body of the P.A.W.inc. on Sat, Aug 7th 2010. On Thursday, Aug 12th he will be officially consecrated into this position and will become only the 10th Presiding Bishop in the 85yr history of this pentecostal organization. We are excited and privilege to be the first to announce this historic elevation at our Sunday Services on yesterday morning at Greater Grace Temple where are pastor received a chorus of cheers and a standing ovation for rising to this lofty position of leadership in the P.A.W. God has truly blessed him and we pray God's continual blessings upon him as he embarks upon this new chapter in his life.

To offer some context to this congratulatory message. Our pastor Bishop Charles Ellis is the son of Bishop David L. Ellis, who is a former Asst Presiding Bishop in this organization. Bishop David L. Ellis was a powerful and anointed vessel of God, and who's dedication and commitment to this ministry brought it to national prominence before God called him home in March of 1996. Much can be said about the tremendous legacy of this great leader, but unfortunately time would not permit us to chronicle his life in this one post. However, you can visit www.greatergrace.org for more info about this great man of God.

Here's a brief clip of Bishop Ellis singing one of his favorite songs.

Our pastor Bishop Charles Ellis became the pastor of Greater Grace Temple back in 1996 and he has been on a fast track ever since taking this church from one level to another. I have always been a great admirer of Bishop Ellis, because of his many talents and vision for the kingdom of God. He is a man of  business, enterprise and entrepreneurship. In February of 2002, 6yrs after his father past; Bishop Charles Ellis ushered in a new era for Greater Grace Temple when we entered a brand new state of the art edifice on the City of David property at our new location on 7mile & Shaiwasee. This new edifice seats 4000 in the main sanctuary and is complete with a banquet facility, conference center and administrative wing. In just a short time he has re-energized this new community where our church is housed with Back to School Festivals, Gospel Fest & Car Shows, Thanksgiving & Christmas Give-A-Ways just to name a few.

Bishop Charles Ellis is also a great preacher in his own right. Here's a clip of him ministering the gospel during a Sunday service at Greater Grace Temple.

I am truly thankful for my pastor, he is someone that I admire and hold in very high esteem.  It is an honor and privilege to serve him as one of his assistant pastors at the church I grew up.  I feel very honored and humbled to have both Bishop David L. Ellis & Bishop Charles Ellis as role models. Men of God, who I believe have help mold and shape me into the minister of the gospel I am today. I can remember when he and his wife First LadyCrissette attended my graduation at MSU back in Dec of 1998. I truly appreciated them both taking time out of their busy schedule to celebrate with us. He also officiated the marriage of my wife and I 6yrs ago; the first marriage he officiated after becoming the Asst Presiding Bishop back in 2004.

I am tremendously thankful and grateful for my pastor, and that I have a window seat to witness history unfolding right before my very eyes. I just wanted to take this opportunity to salute our pastor Bishop Charles H. Ellis III in his elevation and to offer our continued support of the ministry and the people of God at the church that I call home, Greater Grace Temple.

Congratulations Bishop!!

(Feel free to leave your congratulatory message to Bishop Ellis on our blog as we plan to post this on his facebook profile as well.)

Pastor Nimmons