April, 5th 2008
If you are reading this blog, it is an attempt to connect with all those who know Ian & Johnna Utile, Eric & Mandy Wood, or any of the other members of the Take No Glory musicianary team. We want to keep you updated and be united with you in the midst of what God is doing daily in HIS ministry. If you would like to be updated regularly, please email us (firstname.lastname@example.org) and will add you to the email updates we send out.
Please pray for us! We ask for prayer because of all the transition (we are excited about). We know it is not our abilities or strength, but the Spirit of the Lord we can trust in.
"We proclaim to you what we ourselves have actually seen and heard so that you may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ. We are writing these things so that you may fully share our joy." (1st John 1:3,4)
2 MINISTRIES BECOME 1
After processing and praying through what God is doing through Take No Glory we felt that it was important to communicate the fact that this short blog is not trying to explain the ordinary man who is a part of the ministry, but the extraordinary God who is working in and through those who have availed their lives into His hands.
Thus, this is our short attempt to explain the unbelievable, undeniable, and unconditional hand of the living God who "accomplishes infinitely more than we might ask or think"?
"Then Jesus went from village to village, teaching the people. And he called his twelve disciples together and began sending them out two by two, giving them authority to cast out evil spirits. He told them to take nothing for their journey except a walking stick-no food, no traveler's bag, no money." (Mark 6:6-8)
Consistently God sends out His messengers in pairs and asks men and women to stand up, step up and step out for his gospel and ultimately for His glory. Adam and Eve, Moses and Aaron, David and Jonathon, Peter and John, and Paul and Timothy are just a few examples of God's powerful pairs. Prayerfully this is our story of two families and two ministries leaving everything to say, "YES", to Jesus.
On November 17th Ian and Eric met through MySpace and instantly surrendered to each other’s leadership on their first phone conversation. As the two began to share their hearts it seemed inevitable that we would all be doing ministry together in some way, shape, or form in the days to come. Who new it would only be weeks away?
On December 11th Eric flew out to SoCAL and spent four days waiting on the Lord. It was amazing to see the Lord unite the ministry and prepare us for the days ahead.
"A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken." Ecclesiastes 4:12
On January 24th Ian and Johnna flew out to the amazing weather of the Midwest and to do some ministry with Eric and Mandy for 10 days. The trip totaled 3500 miles and went from Fort Wayne, IN to Lafayette, IN to Atlanta GA, to Kernersville NC, to Philadelphia PA.
As we spent time together it became apparent that the Lord was going to speak to all of us about the future. The times of prayer and worship were amazing. In fact Mandy and Johnna just seemed to fit together vocally, just as Ian and Eric had fit together foundationally. What an amazing testimony of the Lord and how His Spirit can bring us together and unite us for His purposes.
"Is there any encouragement from belonging to Christ? Any comfort from his love? Any fellowship together in the Spirit? Are your hearts tender and compassionate? Then make me truly happy by agreeing wholeheartedly with each other, loving one another, and working together with one mind and purpose. Don't be selfish; don't try to impress others. Be humble, thinking of others as better than yourselves. Don't look out only for your own interests, but take an interest in others, too." (Philippians 2:1-4)
One night while in Lafayette Indiana, a five year old boy and his mom came up and asked if we could pray for him. She said," today we just found out Wyatt has lymphoma, we need Jesus' touch. Could you pray for us?" That night we laid hands on a young boy who's Band-Aid on his neck seemed all too real. We bawled together and waited to see God's hand move...
"The Lord protects those of childlike faith; I was facing death, and he saved me." (Ps. 116:6)
Sunday night we partook in a worship service where Wyatt and his mom came forward a second time for prayer. Proceeding the prayer Wyatt exclaimed with joy, "Mommy, I'm better!". She said, "now Wyatt, here's your band aide, you're still sick." Wyatt responded, "But, mommy, I'M BETTER!"
On Monday we received a call while driving down to Atlanta. It went something like this: "Eric, this is Trent. I just wanted you to know that Wyatt went into the doctor today and got retested for lymphoma again... His doctor told him and his mom to go home. HE IS HEALED!"
This is just one of many stories that the Lord has shared with us to remind us that He is alive and well and still works in the midst of those whom He loves.
On February 15th Ian and Johnna flew out a second time to Indiana. (We questioned, for a moment, a very brief moment, ok like no moment at all, if they were called to a sub-zero climate, with no hills and no oceans, but availed little.) We had an intense time of ministry and saw God once again unite hearts and lives for His purposes. We also found out upon coming home that Chris, Landon, Conner and Landrew were going to be joining us as we travel all around the world. It was and is still prolific to us how God hand picked some fella's who loved Him and were specifically gifted for the ministry of Take No Glory.
Over the next few weeks Eric, Mandy, Eden, Elijah, Chris and Landon were packing bags to move to Santa Ana as Ian and Johnna were throwing away everything to fit 8 new people into their home…soon to be 12 people!!!
"How wonderful and pleasant it is when brothers live together in harmony! For harmony is as precious as the anointing oil that was poured over Aaron's head, that ran down his beard and onto the border of his robe. Harmony is as refreshing as the dew from Mount Hermon that falls on the mountains of Zion. And there the Lord has pronounced his blessing, even life everlasting." (Psalm 133)
On March 16th we all played for the first time together at Calvary Chapel Santa Cruz. What a blessing! The Lord has brought hearts together that want to serve and seek as God saves the world.
As of right now we are praying, playing and preparing for the days ahead. God has orchestrated a tour around the world this summer that will be taking 12 people from Santa Ana, California to Oahu, Hawaii, to Dumaguete in the Philippines, to the UK, then to Austria and back to the states through Maine, New York, Indiana & finally back to California. Please pray for us as we continue to follow our Lord faithfully. God has implanted our hearts with the calling of the Truth of God, to the world of God, for the glory of God.
While there is much to say and share we pray that the Lord would write His own love story all over your lives. You see, this story once again is not so much about a ministry, as much as it is the Messiah who works in and through the ministry and the man for His own purposeful glory. So may this encourage, edify, challenge and change you to be a story that watches Him "accomplish infinitely more than you might ask or think"?
LATEST HIGHLIGHTS AS OF APRIL 2008
SEEK AND SAVE THE LOST - Hundreds of people have been reconciled and restored.
WEEKLY FASTING & PRAYER - Every Tuesday as a team…please join us from where you are.
GROWING MUSICIANARY TEAM - Now 15 people all living in southern California from all over the nation.
MUSIC AS A MEANS TO THE MESSAGE - Always giving our music away freely.
HUMBLY GIVING CDs AS WITNESSING TOOLS - Over 35,000 albums in the last few months.
DIGITAL DOWNLOADS HAVE HELPED REACH INTERNATIONALLY - In just the first two days of April-2877 songs downloaded at 8.17 gigs.
NEW WEBSITE - www.TakeNoGlory.com
NEW MySpace - www.MySpace.com/takenoglory
NATIONWIDE TOUR - 18 states & 25,000 miles in about 3 months.
UPCOMING 5 MONTH WORLD TOUR - 12 people, 9 flights, 3 continents, 1 purpose.
NON FOR PROFIT STATUS - Donations are now tax-deductible through Foundation For Christian Stewardship.
DOWNLOAD NEW CD FREE - Our new album "Wake Me Up" can now be downloaded from our website...or let us know your address and we will ship a free copy to you. In fact we will send you a bunch if you want to give some away!
Joyfully serving Jesus,
The Take No Glory Team