Camp Sivells, May 20-24


Men’s Ministry Mission Trip 2015

Cloudcroft, New Mexico in many ways was delightful; Chilly mornings, cool days, and bright sunshine as 14 men from TBC worked long hours preparing Camp Sivells for its summer opening. The sound of lawn mowers, weed eaters, and picks & shovels resounded through the valley.  We were sustained by great food and drink, encouraging words, and most importantly, prayer.  Every evening after dinner was spent doing devotion time and sharing. After three days of hard work the camp had been transformed.  A deep feeling of the greatness of God’s provision was felt as we loaded up to return home.  May God grant us the opportunity to return next year.

Blessings, Frank Brooksher


“A men’s work retreat gave us a chance to cross the age and worship barriers that inevitably arise in a church.  The best part of the trip was getting to know new friends and old friends better.  I’d do it again in a heartbeat!”


Thistles While You Work

Behold the upright, verdant thistles whose defenses include many sharpened missiles

Guaranteed to puncture the thickest of skin right down to where your meta carpals begin

Why God in His wisdom considered creating, a plant so reviled it earned a triple X rating

He must have decided our earthly existence required a test in landscaping resistance

So, in the interest of keeping you fully informed, ever alert and completely alarmed

Here’s my message direct, a lesson sublime, extensively researched with masterful rhyme

Attend to this first, let your mind be expanded, never approach a thistle bare handed

It’s completely and thoroughly postured to win, in a battle with you and your flimsy white skin

You could ignore its advance on your lovely abode, but it’s such a distraction, the gauntlet’s been throwed

Don’t go it unarmed or you’ll surely succumb, to multiple contusions and be considered just dumb

Secure the strongest of gloves, two pair at least, sufficient to assault this thorny green beast

To go it alone sans such needed protection, would ensure your fingers be exposed to dissection

You might think the best source of a thistle’s demise, is cutting it down to a manageable size

But once the deed’s done you’ll quickly find out, the thistle responds by growing fresh sprouts

There’s one other thing if you think it’s now dead, along its main roots new thistles will spread

Like sin in your life if you don’t play to win, and deal with the roots, it crops up again

Now the longer the thistle grows deep in the ground, its hold on the soil will amaze and astound

Gripping and tugging with all of your might, leaves the thistle intact, a victorious fight

And lest you think you’ll just wait ’til it dies, see how the wind makes its hundred seeds fly

Landing and sprouting in new crannies galore, all pledged to expand our carnage and gore

What’s true with our sin and thistles as well, if you ignore them they’ll create your own private hell

 For thistles and sin both strengthen each day, but arrest them at birth and they’re easy to slay

This tale of the thistle and its blight on the land, reminds us of sin that we fail to disband

Barely detected it seems hardly a worry, you’ll deal with it later, no reason to hurry

Then, one day you waken and soon realize, this meaningless sin has quadrupled in size

It controls your thoughts and becomes your master, and left unchecked is a looming disaster

There’s just one solution in this desperate hour, confess your sin, claim His healing power

For Christ alone has conquered all sin, no matter what form your thistle comes in

Scripture declares if our sins we confess, He will cleanse from us all our unrighteousness

Cast your thistles on Christ and from root to the stem, he’ll cast it away and replace it with Him

So, choose this day which master to serve, some skin-shredding thistle, (a gift from the ‘perv’)

Or the life-giving healing of your Savior and friend, who promises your thistles forever to end

Dedicated to the several stout-hearted souls who battled the Sivells’ thistles. 
Wiley Wilkerson, May, 2015