Darla Noble—March Speaker

*Freelance author and ghostwriter with twenty-eight years of experience in the nonfiction and Christian markets; specializing in Bible studies and devotionals, historical nonfiction, elementary curriculum, character education resources and inspirational nonfiction and self-help resources for women, parents, tweens and teens.

*Motivational speaker for women, tweens and teens.

I am passionate about equipping families and young people to become the wonderful, unique and amazing people God designed them to be. Through stories, scripture, listening and sharing, both in books and through speaking, it is my desire to help young people and families love, respect and appreciate who they are and what they are capable of.

I am happy to announce that in early 2018 my latest book, “Faith is Like Chocolate” will be available for your reading pleasure. Kindle? Nook? Hard copy? Don’t worry-I’ve got you covered.

“Faith is Like Chocolate” is a collection of short-read devos/inspirational messages for tweens, teens, and beyond. So if you like chocolate, cheesy pizza, “A Christmas Story”, “The True Story of the Three Little Pigs”, plus a whole lot more, AND you want to know what they all have in common, then this is the book for you!

“Faith is Like Chocolate” joins three other books by yours truly: “Love, Momma D”, “Throught the Eyes of a Shepherd”, and “All my love, George…Letters from a WWII hero”. And don’t forget–when you purchase one of my books 20% of the sale goes to a ministry or organization (listed on my website).

For more information on my books, freelancing fees, ghostwriting services and other projects, you can visit my website:
http://www.dnoblewrites.weebly.com

I also invite you to read/share/follow my weekly blogs:
Parenting blog http://www.mommadsays.blogspot.com
Evangelism blog http://www.alittlesaltygrace.blogspot.com

You can also connect with me on Facebook: dnoblewrites

Fear is a Liar

 

“Fear not, O land, be glad and rejoice, for the Lord has done great things!” Joel 2:21

God doesn’t want us to go through life afraid. In fact, the Bible offers daily reminders. The phrase “fear not” appears 365 times in Scripture!

How much more reassurance do we need? The message is clear: If we trust Him, we can cast all fears aside.

Maybe easier said than done. Who doesn’t feel fearful every now and then?

The fear-inducing possibilities are many: failing to live up to others’ expectations. Not having enough money. Making wrong choices in business, or marriage, or even buying a house or car. Don’t forget speaking in public – cited by many as their second-greatest fear, behind only death.

Being fearful doesn’t make you a bad person. It makes you human. God created us all in His image. Still, we inevitably sin, so will always fall short of perfection.

We can’t control when we feel fear. We can, however control our response to it.

Ears Open or Shut?

“You shall not fear them, for it is the Lord your God who fights for you.”Deuteronomy 3:22

We’ve all known pathological liars. These people, for whatever reason, cannot be truthful.

Maybe they boasted about their swollen bank accounts, even as they never seemed to have money for lunch. They bragged of the beautiful people they dated – who, for some reason, you never met. They prattled endlessly about the exotic places they’d vacationed … yet didn’t have photos.

The truth eventually caught up. It always does. By this time, perhaps you’d distanced yourself from the person.

You might have blamed yourself, though, for the time you spent validating their untruths. You suspected they were all hot air, yet still kept their company. Maybe you feel gullible, or foolish. It’s easy to beat ourselves up. Hindsight is always illuminating.

Just like these former acquaintances, fear is a liar. God tells us that fear is a tool our enemies use. When we listen to fearful thoughts in our head, we validate them. Grant them an audience, and Satan starts talking.

Fear can be crippling. Once it takes hold, we’re enslaved. It’s a ball and chain on our lives.

So don’t listen. Fear is a liar. It’s like the pathological person we finally ditched. There was nothing in the relationship for us.

Instead, trust that God has a plan. He loves and strengthens us. We can believe His voice of truth … or fall for the fears and doubts that Satan spreads.

Bravery is about feeling fear, and advancing nonetheless. Don’t listen to that fear. You won’t go far with a chain and leg shackle.

Cast them into the fire, though, and the path becomes wide open. Fear not … and enjoy the journey.

(If you’re ready to embrace Christ, He’s ready for you. Visit C Suite for Christ to join in Christ-centered fellowship with other professionals. Submit a prayer request for a pressing need in your life. Follow C Suite for Christ on LinkedIn and Facebook. Questions? Contact Paul M. Neuberger at (414) 313-8338 or [email protected])

Bob Willbanks—January Speaker

I’ve served the payroll, tech, real estate, and nonprofit sectors throughout my career, with experience in sales, operations management, sales management and service bureau / business ownership. I’ve owned multiple successful business ventures and have experience with Fortune 500 companies at senior management levels.

I’m currently engaged as the CEO of G7 Networking, Inc. and Co-Local Owner (with my wife Barb) of Next Door Photos Twin Cities.

Connect with us online at www.g7networking.com or www.ndp-tc.com.

Specialties: Spiritual Growth, Leadership, Personal Improvement, Events, Fellowship, Networking, Connecting, Influencing, Evangelism, Real Estate, Real Estate Photography and Media

Rescue Those in Need

 

“The Lord will rescue his servants; no one who takes refuge in him will be condemned.” – Psalms 34:22

If you were in France in mid-1940, the future looked bleak.

The German blitzkrieg had torn through once-vaunted French defenses. Paris was threatened (and soon occupied). Defeat was a question of “when.”

With British and French armies cut in half by the German advance, tens of thousands of Allied troops were stranded near the northwest French seaport of Dunkirk. German forces weren’t far away. The sea lie at their backs. They had no place to go.

With disaster looming, British Prime Minister Winston Churchill issued a stirring call to arms, closing with “We shall never surrender.” He asked British civilians to help rescue the beleaguered soldiers at Dunkirk. Despite the very real possibility they might never return, thousands responded.

A flotilla of more than 700 watercraft, many nothing more than pleasure boats, crossed the English Channel. Over a nine-day span beginning May 26, nearly 340,000 British and French troops boarded and sailed to safety. The rescue was called a “miracle.”

What if these brave British civilians hadn’t stepped up? The sea at Dunkirk would have run red with blood. History would have been altered, and geopolitics perhaps changed forever.

But they did … and their actions hold lessons for all people of faith.

Who Needs Rescuing?

“Rescue the weak and needy; deliver them from the hand of the wicked.” – Psalms 82:4

Many people face a spiritual Dunkirk. A hostile, confrontational world has left them anxious and uncertain. Despite more means to connect with others than have ever existed, they feel isolated and lonely. Fear and uncertainty loom over their lives.

These people don’t know Jesus. Though seeking escape, they can’t find light in the darkness. Yet, they desperately need deliverance. Are we to turn a blind eye to them?

Some would contend we’re not in a position to help. We’re not clergy or counselors, after all. How are we qualified to pull these souls from the abyss?

Proverbs 24:10-11 offers guidance: “If you falter in a time of trouble, how small is your strength! Rescue those being led away to death; hold back those staggering toward slaughter.”

Consider the record rates of suicide, or people suffering from depression and similar challenges. There simply aren’t enough “experts” to step in. 

How can we ignore the untold number of souls in need of rescue? We, as Christians, are called into the breach … just as Winston Churchill asked his citizens to do.

Launching Our Boats

“Rescue me from the mire, do not let me sink; deliver me from those who hate me, from the deep waters.”Psalms 69:14

The onus is on us to rescue those trapped, and facing spiritual death. We must respond to our Heavenly Father’s command.

As Christians, we fight with love and mercy. Being sinners ourselves, we wade into battle for the broken souls in our communities. These people don’t need messengers who are perfect. They need disciples who are passionate.

In Matthew 14, Jesus invites Peter out of his boat for a stroll across the water. Similarly (and conversely), we are called out of the water and into our boats. We can invite those who are flailing and drowning in with us. We can save them from spiritual death.

How big is your boat? How many can you rescue? Perhaps you won’t know until you begin. The certainty, though, is that many will perish if we don’t answer God’s call.

(If you’re ready to embrace Christ, He’s ready for you. Visit C Suite for Christ to join in Christ-centered fellowship with other professionals. Submit a prayer request for a pressing need in your life. Follow C Suite for Christ on LinkedIn and Facebook. Questions? Contact Paul M. Neuberger at (414) 313-8338 or [email protected])

Larry Osborne—December Speaker

I served as the lead pastor at North Coast Church for 38 years overseeing growth from 128 to over 13,000 in weekend attendance. Currently I serve North Coast as a Teaching Pastor and Kingdom Ambassador focusing on teaching the Bible, mentoring, and consulting leaders (in the church, non-profit sector, and marketplace). I’ve also written 10 books and I’m lucky enough to get paid for what I would gladly do for free. The only thing I love more than working on these things is hanging out with my family. For more, see www.LarryOsborne.com

Change the Narrative

Image courtesy of LinkedIn

 

“But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people.” – 2 Timothy 3:1-5

Are we in the last days?

Turn on TV news, or scroll through social media, and you might think so. Much of the discourse resembles characterizations described by Paul in his letter to the missionary Timothy.

People are angry. Intolerant. Loud and boastful. Unwilling to listen to others. Love of self, money and pleasure controls their lives.

Paul warned of terrible times in the last days. People would live wrongly and ignore God’s commands. Avoid them, he advised, lest you get sucked into their decadence.

Is this where we find ourselves? Staring down hordes who have turned from God, and are closed off to all but their own beliefs?

Maybe. Yet within every crisis lies opportunity.

God reminds that every one of us are created in His image. Let’s not be quick to write off others. Instead, let’s embrace the Great Commission, and seek to make disciples of even those who have strayed.

Let Us Speak Differently

“A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” – Proverbs 15:1

“Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger” – James 1:19

“Whoever restrains his words has knowledge, and he who has a cool spirit is a man of understanding.” – Proverbs 17:27

Consider these verses. What do they all have in common?

This guidance from Scripture runs contrary to our current environment, where people compete over who can shout the loudest, or win an argument at all costs. These passages counsel us to hold our tongues, and first listen and consider.

Herein lies our opportunity to share truth and the Good News. We can model the love of Jesus. By acting as true disciples, we offer a stark contrast to societal cacophony. Is it possible that many, worn out by the tumult, will not see a difference … and find it appealing?

Let’s first seek to walk in others’ shoes. Try to grasp the pain that makes them lash out.

Rather than respond in kind to sharp tongues, ask insightful questions: How did you come to this belief? Who told you the facts on which you base your statements? What are the perspectives of those who disagree?

Enact the 7-Second Rule: Wait seven seconds before responding. Let words sink in. Allow the Holy Spirit to shape an answer. Permit God to guide you in de-escalating conflict.

These are merely tactics to build bridges. The bigger picture – the part that really matters – is changing the narrative of anger and vitriol that seems to dominate the public square.

How can we do so? Listen actively. Show empathy. Respond lovingly. Who might notice, and see a new (and better) way forward?

This is our opportunity to demonstrate God’s healing power. As Romans 12:9 advises, “Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good.”

The other option? We can seek to win arguments … but if we lose souls in the process, what have we won?

(If you’re ready to embrace Christ, He’s ready for you. Visit C Suite for Christ to join in Christ-centered fellowship with other professionals. Submit a prayer request for a pressing need in your life. Follow C Suite for Christ on LinkedIn and Facebook. Questions? Contact Paul M. Neuberger at (414) 313-8338 or [email protected])

Dan Hudson—November Speaker

Born and raised in Wisconsin, Dan is a product of his own faith journey and has a passion to help people experience what it took him too long to discover: a real, raw and relational walk with Jesus. It was when God intersected with Dan in this way that his path changed and he began pursuing ministry.

Dan has served as a pastor for over 18 years in a variety of capacities: from working in a larger congregation helping start a second campus to launching a new church plant with a small core of people. Most recently, he served as pastor of Mission and Discipleship for Shepherd of the Hills Lutheran in Pewaukee, WI.

In every context of ministry, Dan has a passion to translate the Gospel in tangible ways so that every person can meet and embrace the love of Jesus. He loves walking the path of discipleship alongside others who are discovering a new identity and purpose for their lives. In all things, Dan longs to help people experience the grace and truth of God in real ways that touch down in their lives.

He lives this mission out with his teammate and bride of over 20 years, along with their 4 teenage children who love Jesus and serve the Lord right alongside mom and dad. In his spare time, Dan loves all things Wisconsin: the outdoors, hiking, kayaking, hunting, fishing, restoring old cars, sports – Packers, brats, and cheese curds!

Release Your Worries

 

“Count it all joy, my brethren, when you meet various trials, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.” – James 1:2-3

It’s easy to worry one’s way through life.

Relationships. Money. Health. Career. Are any of these parts of our lives devoid of concerns?

Let’s not overlook larger fears, as well, over which we have even less control: economic security. Conflicts here and abroad. Environmental threats.

Day-to-day pressures can seem overwhelming. Joys can be hard to count. Worry takes over. Does anyone enjoy feeling this way?

Probably not – yet James writes that we should find joy in such trials. Our faith becomes more steadfast because of them. We can derive strength, and hope, and perseverance.

Everyone is in, approaching or leaving a crisis. It’s how life works. The critical part is how we manage the related stress, worries and fears. Do we trust God to guide us?

The Hidden Message in Our Prayers

“Night and day we pray most earnestly that we may see you again and supply what is lacking in your faith.” – 1 Thessalonians 3:10

Our prayers are revealing. Do you “worry” your prayers? Do they sometimes begin with “Just,” like a wheeler-dealer cutting a deal with the Lord? As in “Just let this happen, and I’ll do this in return?” Seriously?

Don’t put God in a box. Scripture promises He will do all abundantly for us. He fills in our deficiencies, which are often laid bare when we fail at something. To borrow a popular saying: God doesn’t choose the qualified, he qualifies the chosen.

Yes, this is indeed how He works. When our prayers are pleading and worrying, instead of trusting, we fail God. If “Just” enters the picture, it’s a neon warning sign to refocus, and believe bigger.

God is a finisher. He responds to our pleas for help, without condescending. When we

don’t know what we’re doing, or where we’re going, He leads us. His wisdom is profound, unceasing, and incomprehensible.

At the Last Supper, Jesus told his disciples that He was the vine, and they the branches; apart from Him, they could do nothing.

Thus, we should not hesitate to ask God for assistance. He will respond. He will grant us mercy. He will grant forgiveness. Of all these, we should have no worries.

(If you’re ready to embrace Christ, He’s ready for you. Visit C Suite for Christ to join in Christ-centered fellowship with other professionals. Submit a prayer request for a pressing need in your life. Follow C Suite for Christ on LinkedIn and Facebook. Questions? Contact Paul M. Neuberger at (414) 313-8338 or [email protected])

Ben Utecht—October Speaker

Ben has always chased his dreams, finding his way from the river town of Hastings Minnesota to a Super Bowl championship field. He has established himself as a prominent corporate speaker and coach in the areas of organizational Culture and Leadership development. Ben is a high performing Chief Culture Officer and Chief Growth Officer currently working with Behavioral Essentials, True North Equity, and Conquer Ninja Gyms. Ben has had success in many realms, from sitting on the prestigious board of the American Brain Foundation, authoring “Counting the Days While My Mind Slips Away” with Simon and Schuster, and releasing award-nominated albums as a professional singer. Recently Ben was awarded Tony Dungy’s Uncommon Leader Award following in the footsteps of athletes like Peyton Manning. Ben would tell you his greatest passion is being a husband to his beautiful wife and a father to their four daughters.

ACHIEVEMENTS
2003 Team Captain – University of Minnesota
2003 First Team All Big Ten Tight End
2007 Super Bowl XLI Champion – Indianapolis Colts
2012 Dove Award Nominee
2013 Minnesota Brain Injury Alliance Ambassador Award
2014 Public Leadership in Neurology Award (American Academy of Neurology)
2019 Tony Dungy “Uncommon Leader” Award Winner

Let God Break You Up

 

“You crown the year with a bountiful harvest; even the hard pathways overflow with abundance.” – Psalms 65:11

If you’ve ever planted a garden, or grass, you know the critical first step.

You have to loosen the soil. Really get in there and dig it up. Ignore this task, and failure inevitably follows.

Seeds left atop hard soil won’t germinate. They’ll wither in the sun, get washed away by rain, or be eaten by birds. They need to be worked into the soil, sometimes several inches deep, to access its nutrients and protection.

Tilling the soil has other benefits, too. Water and oxygen penetrate. Fertilizer reaches a depth where it nourishes young roots.

Farmers, who grow crops on a large scale, can go nearly a foot deep with their tilling machines. Thank heavens we amateur growers don’t have to put in such effort!

Thousands of years ago, many, many people farmed for a living. The Bible is filled with literal and metaphorical references to growing and harvesting. There’s a powerful lesson to be learned.

Are You Ready to Harvest?

“Those who plant in tears will harvest with shouts of joy.” – Psalms 126:5

God has a plan for every one of us. He wants us to reap a bountiful harvest of love, joy and fulfilment.

First, though, we need to be open to His planting. Like the soil, we can’t be hard and inflexible. We need to be broken up. The conditions for spiritual growth have to be created.

Similar to a farmer, God tills us at a deep level. He goes far into our souls. Only there can He plant the seeds to fulfil His plans for us.

Just like farmers who work long hours, God toils continuously. His will cannot be denied.
We’re not always open to his tilling, though.

The Need for Tilling

“Then the earth will yield its harvests, and God, our God, will richly bless us.” – Psalms 67:6

When life goes swimmingly, it can get easy to forget about God’s blessings. If challenges are few, so, often, is reflection. We get cocky. Our hearts become like the hard soil: infertile and unwelcoming.

Until, of course, inevitable difficulties arise: health issues. Marital problems. Business struggles. Financial stress.

Suddenly, we remember God’s presence in our lives. “What should I do?” we ask Him. “Don’t you love me anymore?”

Oh, He does … which is exactly why your comfortable existence has been interrupted. God is trying to tell you something. Yet your heart remains hard soil. Before you can hear Him, God has to do some tilling.

Embrace His work. God only tills us so we can grow. Be thankful that He is digging deep, to snap us out of our blissfully ignorant reverie. Nothing good grows there.

All this tilling has a purpose. God is working something wonderful in you. To make it happen, though, we often need to first be broken up, and opened to the elements that nurture growth. Understand this, and God’s message will become far clearer.

We are His gardens. God wants to plant seeds of discipleship. The more open we are to His tilling, the less we need to be broken up.

(If you’re ready to embrace Christ, He’s ready for you. Visit C Suite for Christ to join in Christ-centered fellowship with other professionals. Submit a prayer request for a pressing need in your life. Follow C Suite for Christ on LinkedIn and Facebook. Questions? Contact Paul M. Neuberger at (414) 313-8338 or [email protected])