Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Great Quote

"God pictures himself as a mountain spring of clean, cool, life-giving water. The way to glorify a fountain like this is to enjoy the water, and praise the water, and keep coming back to the water, and point other people to the water, and get strength for love from the water, and never, never, never prefer any drink in the world over this water. That makes the spring look valuable. That is how we glorify God, the fountain of living water." -John Piper "When I Don't Desire God"

Thursday, November 21, 2013

The Weekly Word

Well it has been quite some time since you've heard from any of us, and many of you have expressed your concern through emails inquiring about our absence. It's encouraging for us to know that most of you really enjoyed receiving the weekly emails and they had an impact that reached further than we even realized. It would be impossible to fill you in on everything that has transpired among all the guys, and who knows, E-Fellowship might be one small spark away from igniting once again. 

From a personal standpoint, I've been given the keys to another website and therefore it would be too time consuming and inefficient from a ministry standpoint to try and run E-Fellowship as well. Therefore, I've made a commitment to writing weekly again and gathering others to write with me, but now I'm writing over here.

If you would like to start receiving this new weekly email then please feel free to sign up here: Weekly Word Sign-up Form

Thanks for your encouragement and support of E-Fellowship up to this point, and who knows what the Spirit might have in store. For now, here's an excerpt from the latest email from the Weekly Word:


For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16)

This is the summary statement of the gospel with an astounding description of God’s love for man and a beautiful promise to those who love Him back. This is perhaps one of the most awesome sentences in all of Scripture. However, I often fear that this summary statement made by Jesus has been hijacked at times to promote a distorted gospel message - one that highlights the act of believing with no mention of entrusting, surrender, or commitment. Is hijacked an overstatement? Read more here…..

Friday, April 19, 2013

Get to it

Hello all,
So this past Sunday I was released by the Giants. I was shocked to say the least. Not because I was released necessarily ( I had about a 12.00 era in two starts) but because it was less than two weeks into the season. Obviously most of you know that this is pretty uncommon in the minor leagues. Sure I was upset about this, but it really affected me because I had plans for this year. I was going to get serious about my teammates and learning about them and learning about God with them. I was going to get our Bible study going again. I was going to be intentional about my time at the field. Well as you noticed all those sentences started with I. God has different plans! And the peace which transcends all understanding is guarding my heart and mind as we speak.
      I write all this as a challenge to you who are in the midst of it. You know how intentional you are with your time in the word when have a big decision in front of you. You know how devoted to prayer you are when someone is sick in your family. You know how are grateful you are when something great happens in your career.  Well I challenge you to find that level of intentionality, devotion, and gratefulness in the everyday.
      It's so funny to me that this is happening because literally two days before I was released I was for clarity in my career. Well here it is! I know that in this time of transition I will be firmly planted in His word. I just pray for that to continue as I start the next phase of my life.
      So get to it! Whatever your area of impact is dive in. If you have been thinking about having conversations with guys do it. If you have been thinking about doing a study do it. If you have been thinking about fill in the blank do it!
      So blessed to be a part of this.
Colossians 3:15 Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body your were called to peace. And be thankful.

Friday, March 29, 2013

A Challenge

Fellas, sorry its been a while since I've last had something to say.  As our spring trainings wind down I thought this would be a good time to issue a challenge to the readers of this blog or competitors at any level.  I want to speak to the ones who call Jesus their king.  All of us have platforms, all of us have a circle of influence... All of us can make a difference for the Kingdom.  Recognize it, embrace it.
  I pray that 1 Tim 4:12 would be a guide for you this season.  I pray that we as believers would not shame the name of Jesus, instead, be a shepherd for those who are lost.  I pray that we would not be filled with doubt, but with the power of The Holy Spirit.   I pray that as success finds us that we remember to give thanks to the One who allows such things.  Adversely, when we struggle, I pray that we would have faith that our Lord is with us and through our perseverance we will grow stronger (James 1:2-4).
   Do not be just hearers of the Word... Be doers as well.  Lets let the lives we live be a billboard for Who we believe in.

Have fun, be strong, love all... Be Men of God this season.


Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Your Career is NOT Your Calling

For the sake of time and space I'll just start this post with a confession - For the majority of my life, I thought I was called to be a successful baseball player and then give all glory to God. While partly true, an even deeper truth eventually opened up my eyes and radically liberated me from this box that I had placed myself in. This deeper truth is the fact that:

Your career is NOT your calling.

You see, baseball is the stage not the show. The story never changes. There can be a wide variety of cast, crew and venues, but the story remains the same. You, me, the broadcaster, the parking lot attendants - we all have the same calling. The CEO and the custodian wear different costumes, but the call remains the same. We as believers in Jesus Christ our Lord are all called to faithfully follow Jesus and gather more followers. There are an endless variety of vehicles you can drive down that straight and narrow path.

"And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him." (Colossians 3:17 ESV)

"Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ." (Colossians 3:23-24)

Scripture claims that you don't play for the name on the back of the jersey or the front of the jersey. Scripture says you are to play for the name on that empty tomb. You will not receive your eternal reward based upon your stats, your bank roll or the number of followers you have on Twitter. You will receive your reward based upon your faithfulness because of Jesus' faithfulness. So continue to compete for your career but stay committed to the calling -  Faithfully follow Jesus and gather some more followers.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

Good Teammate Part 2 By Atlanta Brave Matt Pagnozzi

When I think of a good teammate I think of a person who has certain qualities. Some qualities that person may have are trustworthiness, loyalty, selflessness, being a servant, leadership, and a likeable personality always helps. A good teammate has certain qualities that make others around them better.  A good teammate is infectious and genuine.

While thinking about a “Good Teammate” I realized how they are found not just in the athletic realm, but in everyday relationships too.  For example, think about your “teammates” at work, at home with your Family (Wife, kids, parents, friends, ect.), at Church, and your relationship with the Lord.  All of these relationships will benefit from being a “Good Teammate.”  The Bible is a great source to find the above traits.

1 Peter 4:8-10
Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins. Show hospitality to one another without grumbling.  As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God's varied grace.
This verse focuses on the need for teammates to use their talents to serve others.  Being kind and serving gladly, instead of complaining, are tremendously important skills for teammates.
Proverbs 27:17           
As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.”
The e-Fellowship verse.  As teammates, our expectations and attitudes and behaviors absolutely impact those around us.  We all are sharpened and improved by the interactions and examples of our peers.  And we all benefit from those around us helping us learn together.
Psalm 100:2 
“Serve the Lord with gladness!  Come into his presence with singing!
Colossians 3:23
“Whatever you are doing, work at it with enthusiasm, as to the Lord and not for men.” with gladness!  Come into his presence
If we apply these biblical commandments and principles to our lives and live by them, maybe someone will think of us as a “Good Teammate.” Or better yet, we make those around us better. I don’t believe that it is by coincidence these examples, traits, and principles that are found in The Bible are the same ones we value in “Good Relationships” or the ones found in a “Good Teammate.”

Monday, March 11, 2013

What Makes a Good Teammate? By Brett Caroll

I think to make a good teammate you must first have a model of a what a good teammate is. Maybe it's a leader, mentor, teacher etc..., but for me, that's Jesus.  He has made the biggest impact on me and His impact spills over into the club house and on the field.   If guys on your team know you care about the game, them, and winning, respect will follow. In my opinion, respect and trust is something that is earned. If a teammate can truly check his pride and ego at the door and play self-LESS for the betterment of the team, with the one common goal, to win a championship, then we all get better.  This can help make the journey of the game sweet. Also, I think its important to encourage and celebrate other guys, taking the focus off of ourselves.  I realize this can be hard for men, especially being in this competitive profession, but its truly freeing since God controls our destiny. I want my teammates to know that I have their backs on and off the field. Winning is not ultimate, but how you play the game and care for your teammates is crucial when wanting to make an impact. That's the stuff you really remember about people on this journey. Coming from the lenses of a believer, "what makes a good teammate" question can have many layers. If a teammate truly knows your care about them on and off the field, then by God's grace, doors may begin to open for authentic conversation. In my experience, this makes the season a lot  fun and brings joy to the grind. Try to get to know your teammates on a deeper level if they will allow it. I believe this starts with prayer and asking God, "Who are some guys to lock arms with?" and maybe if the Spirit is leading, share the gospel? In the end, this is really what it boils down to, baseball is just a tool in the hand of our powerful King to reflect HIS glory and win souls to Christ. I am so humbled by what God's grace has done in my life on and off the field that this frees me up to love on my teammates where they are and be unashamed of Jesus Christ.  To sum it all up, this game is imperfect and so are we, but praise Jesus for the saving work on the cross and His grace. As Christians and as Men the greatest thing we can do for our teammates, is humble ourselves, put your teammate's needs above your own, so that, in the end Christ is reflected and glorified.  To me, these are the ingredients Christ gives us to not only make a great teammate, but a great husband and a great friend. God is still growing me in these areas so I am not wearing the superman cape, but grateful His grace is sufficient. "He must increase, but I must decrease" John 3:30 

Detroit Tiger Matt Tuiasosopo's testimony for E-Fellowship

I want to welcome Matt Tuiasosopo to the E-Fellowship crew. Matt is guy I have known for almost 10 years just from the game of baseball. We both grew up playing in the same high school conference, and we have competed against each other professionally for years as well. Matt is one of those guys that I try to yell at during batting practice to get some quick face time with, because for anyone that knows him he's got that presence about himself, and he flat out loves Jesus. His testimony hits home for me and I'm excited to have him be apart of this ministry. Enjoy...

My Story - 
Before I came to know Christ I lived a live fueled by fear.  Although I grew up in a Christian home and learned God loved me enough to give His one and only Son to die for me, I found myself constantly FEARING failure in all areas of my life.  I made sure I did all the right things because If I didn't perform well at home, school or in athletics I was so afraid of getting in trouble and being disciplined.  I knew that God, as well as my parents, loved me but my identity wasn't secure and found in Jesus, it was in my performance in life and relationships and success and failures in sports. 

I remember saying the "prayer" when I was younger at church but looking back I don't think I fully understood and realized what I was doing.  It wasn't until February of 2012 that I came to know Christ as I fully understood and experienced the Gospel for the first time in my life as God began LIFTING me from the pit of destruction and shame.  For a long time I had lived a life divided, as I went to bible chapel sunday mornings only to chase after the pleasures of this world sunday nights.  Fear crippled my life and caused me to be a peacemaker at all costs which led to deception in my marriage.  My performances in sports guided how I saw myself and if I failed, I took it as God didn't love me and I chose to rebel against Him, making many poor choices.  I almost lost my marriage and as I sat in my shame and guilt, God did what only He could. He saved my life when I couldn't save it myself. He turned my ashes into beauty.

Today I stand amazed by God's radical grace and mercy that are new every morning of my life.  I never forget that when I was powerless and dead in my sins, God moved and raised me to life.  Since I have received Christ into my heart I can't stop SINGING songs of worship and praise to the almighty Creator!  Everyday I remind myself that I am loved and accepted by the King Jesus no matter what happens in my life.  My hope and my trust is in Christ alone and to Him be the Glory always and forever!

Monday, March 4, 2013

We're Back


It's been a while since you've heard from any of us, but that's been the funny thing about this group for the last 6 years or so. Every now and then we take an unintended Sabbath from writing which normally does exactly what the Sabbath was meant to do and refreshes us. “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath" (Mark 2:27 ESV). Thank you Father for the Sabbath. Teach me how to rest.

So since it's been a while, allow me to bring you guys (and gals) up to date with where God has guided e-Fellowship over the last few months. I retired from baseball in September and began life in full time ministry with Unlimited Potential, Inc. (UPI) in October. UPI seeks "to ReachTeach, and Train baseball players for the purpose of Sending them out into the world to share the good news of Jesus Christ." I have also been graciously blessed with the opportunity to be the chaplain for the Atlanta Braves. Needless to say, my plate is pretty full these days. 

That being said, I no longer felt that I could commit to managing e-Fellowship any longer so I talked to the other guys about what they wanted to do moving forward. To my excitement, they all decided to not let this thing die and have recommitted to writing again periodically with Ben Julianel and Blake Hawksworth now taking over the operations of e-Fellowship. I am currently operating and managing the UPI website and will be writing over there a good bit. However, I will continue playing a role in e-Fellowship as I will also write over here from time to time. 

I have greatly appreciated all the kind words about the e-Fellowship emails and the concerns expressed lately about the emails hopefully continuing. It excites me to be able to announce that e-Fellowship is back in the game and ready to get back into its regular routine of sharing our life with Jesus. I hope lives are touched and even transformed as e-Fellowship continues to be used by the Spirit for the work of the Kingdom. Nice talking to you guys again and we'll talk to you soon. 

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Experiencing the Gospel Daily

"The wise believer learns this truth early and becomes proficient in extracting available benefits from the gospel each day."    -Milton Vincent "A Gospel Primer"

The quote above is referring to the idea that God has not just merely given us His Gospel to embrace it and be converted but actually so we could live in it's riches everyday. Vincent explains that we can do this by focusing on components of it's truth daily (grace, love, joy, kindness, mercy, etc...). One of the components of the Gospel message that jumps out at me is "His grace". Knowing that I deserve a fiery hell and the fact that I get to live in a beautiful country with an amazing family with tremendous opportunity makes me feel so joyful (you choose the description, baseball, career, church, etc...). This helps me to focus on what can be, or what is possible as opposed to what isn't possible and what is not. Have you ever been around somebody who focuses on what isn't available or what isn't going to happen? Yeah! Call the bullpen and bring in the new arm right? It's exhausting and worse than that is that it sometimes creeps up on you and sucks you into it. A good friend of mine always would say you're either a fountain or you're a drain, there is no in between. Which do you want to be? Better yet, which do you think would bring glory to God?

P.S. If anybody is looking for a knew track to listen to pick up "My Shepard" by Justin Unger. It will get you if you let it.

Be blessed...

Monday, February 18, 2013

The Christian "Mean Streak" in Self-Control"

"There is a mean streak to authentic self-control... Self control is not for the timid. When we want to grow in it, not only do we nurture an exuberance for Jesus christ, we also demand of ourselves a hatred of sin... The only possible attitude toward out-of-control desire is a declaration of all-out war... There is something about war that sharpens the senses... You hear a twig snap or the rustling of leaves and you are in attack mode. Someone coughs and you are ready to pull the trigger. Even after days of little or no sleep, war keeps us vigilant." -Ed Welch

This isn't violence against other people. It's violence against all impulses in our selves that make peace with our own sin and settle in with a peacetime mentality. I'm thankful this morning for all my brothers that keep me sharp in my battle with temptation. Iron sharpens iron!

Monday, January 28, 2013

Favor of God

In church on Sunday my pastor made a statement in passing that really struck me and I could not let it go. He said, "Sometimes we try and earn the favor of God while ignoring the principles of God."
This was not what his message was about and he did not elaborate, but he said it. I feel like this is something that I do. I say God I trust you with the end result but I'll handle to process. I will do the work as I need to and then trust you for the result.
God wants me to trust every part of the process no matter what the situation and grasp the fact that His plans for me are way bigger than my plans for me. I thank God for this realization and I am praying for His peace to see my through the process.


Monday, December 31, 2012

Your Prayers Are Needed and Appreciated


It's been quite some time since any of us have written anything, but I wanted to write today simply to share what has occurred this past week. I raised awareness with all of you a few months ago about the journey my sister and her husband have been on and the adoption process that they were going through. Well, this past week this process presented a very unexpected challenge that I wanted to write about a couple of days ago, but I'm still trying to process it all. However, my sister did go ahead and decide to write about it and so I desperately wanted to share it with all of you. I just truly desire the prayers of faithful men and women of God to heal hearts and to restore the hope we have that God has joy waiting on us. Please read below:

"God saw you getting tired, a cure not meant to be.  So He put his arms around you and whispered, “Come with me.”  With tearful eyes we watched you and saw you fade away, although we loved you dearly, we could not make you stay.  A golden heart stopped beating, your tender hands at rest.  God took you home to prove to us He only takes the best."... continue reading here

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Laminin (please watch if you haven't only 6 min)

Pretty cool to see how God shows Himself down to the core of our being in case we didn't already know how amazing and awe inspiring He is.

- Andrew

Tuesday, November 6, 2012


Hebrews is packed with encouraging verses in regards to life's trials & tribulations. We all have experienced them, and will continue to do so. I can honesty say in my journey with Jesus that my greatest, most difficult moments have brought me closer to Him. Not for a quick fix but to actually look inside myself and reflect. My prayers increase, I seek out wisdom from brothers, and the result is an indescribable amount of peace when things around me seem out of control. But more times than not I mess that up, and I try to take over. Because I think my life should go the way I want it.... Sound familiar?

You will see and hear the gospel proclaimed in many shapes and forms these days. The most popular is that God wants you to be healthy, happy, and successful. It becomes about YOU and not Jesus. It sells books, gets downloads, and feels good! But how come when I pick up my Bible I read a different message?

"Although he was his son, he learned obedience through what he suffered." Heb 5:8

"...for then he would have had to suffer repeatedly since the foundation of the world." Heb 9:26

"So Jesus also suffered outside the gate in order to sanctify the people through his own blood." Heb 13:12

These are just out of the book of Hebrews. My aim with this post is not to discourage but encourage! Brothers, sisters, be encouraged! God sent His son to die on the cross for YOU! The greatest gift that you can ever receive. The gift of salvation. But why are we walking around with our heads down!? We won! Christ paid it, stamped it, walked it off. Yes, life is a challenge, but count it all joy when some adversity comes your way. He prescribes it. He knows what you can handle, and when to push you. Change your mind set and look to Him for rest. Cast your burdens on Him. He's good for that, He promises that.

"Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest."-Matthew 11:28

Lets live out lives that demonstrate that belief. Because that life is appealing to others. They want that, heck I want that! That's life with Jesus. Knowing with all your heart, no matter what you bring me Lord, I know I'm gonna make it through. Because I have You, what else do I need!?

"For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it." Heb 12:11

For the moment it seems painful, but later it yields peaceful fruit. 

If God is molding my messed up self to be more like Jesus through adversity, I guess I should submit to that. Because last time I checked, Jesus was a pretty cool dude. Be encouraged!

Blake Hawksworth