Linda and I formally proclaimed our faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior and joined this church. The Holy Spirit filled me with a thirst for His Word. Reading and studying the scriptures and meeting with other Christian men in small groups changed my spiritual life in a powerful way.
The Story Continues with GPS Life Journey and Prison Ministry
I knew that I had to share my new found faith with others. In 2018, I was introduced to prison ministry by a close friend, Roger Ciskie. Roger was already involved in prison ministry and was also familiar with GPS Life Journey through his friend, Nolen Rollins. I was immediately interested in knowing more about this prison ministry and how GPS Life Journey might help me determine if this would be God’s plan and purpose for my life.
I attended a GPS Life Journey class and found that God had prepared me to “share His love by proclaiming the Gospel of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, while performing acts of service for those in need.” I also became certified as a GPS Life Journey Facilitator.
I began to go with Roger Ciskie as he brought God’s Word to men in prison. I became convinced that prison ministry was a perfect fit for me and my mission to share God’s Love while proclaiming the Gospel. Since 2019, I have been certified in state prisons in Tennessee, North Carolina, and Florida, as well as Coleman Federal Prison in Florida.
A Different Environment
My experiences have shown me that God is already at work in all these institutions and the men are hungry for His Word and especially for hope. However, there is a big difference in the makeup of the GPS classes that are typically given in a civilian setting and in those given in a prison environment.
The principal difference is that the students in prison are taken from a wide variety of faith groups or no faith at all and many sign up for a class without having the traditional Christian experiences and understanding of scripture. In prison you rarely have an opportunity to hand pick the men who will attend GPS as the opportunity to attend must be shared with all the men without discrimination. As you might imagine, this brings unique challenges to the GPS facilitator.
I usually spend the first session by proclaiming God’s Love, explaining the GPS Life Journey method of discovery and proclaiming the Gospel. It’s not uncommon to lose a few men rather quickly but I also find that the men who are already “born again” and walking in the Spirit are a big help to those who are struggling with understanding and may be new to the faith.
I have found that men who are in prison for life are just as interested in GPS, if not more so, than men who see themselves being released in a few months or a few years. It seems counter intuitive but men in prison for life desperately need HOPE and they find it in the promises of God to use them despite their past failures. They can live the “abundant life” that Jesus promised His followers.
GPS Life Journey helps the men discover their own unique God-given abilities, skills, and spiritual gifts and how God has uniquely created them. Their imprisonment is not a detriment and serves them well in reaching other men in similar circumstances. Since the venues available for service are greatly limited in the prison environment, I stress that the men have to find an area to serve that will be permitted by the prison administration or find an area of service in a ministry that is already active within their own institution.
The men understand that GPS Life Journey provides them a framework to assist them in discovering God’s plans that are unique to them. I challenge them to serve one another while sharing God’s Love with other men within their own sphere of influence.
The ability to follow up with the men and their own unique mission statements is very limited. When GPS Life Journey is completed my personal contact with them is generally over, as most prisons do not allow personal contact between volunteers and inmates.
However, in order to overcome this limitation, I have tried to establish “accountability partnerships” between men who have graduated from a GPS Life Journey class. I encourage the men to have weekly accountability meetings to go over their individual missions and the progress they are making in fulfilling their own action steps. This is about the only way for them to overcome obstacles and difficulties in continuing their journey to fulfill God’s plan for their lives.
GPS Life Journey has shown me a clear path to proclaim the Gospel while serving men who are imprisoned. It has brought me great joy and I am growing in Christ daily as I proclaim His Word to some of “the least of these.” GPS Life Journey has also been extremely successful in helping prisoners discover that God has a plan for their lives and gives them a sense of great hope that God will use them to accomplish His purposes for their lives, even in prison.
Robert Sandweg is a retired Navy Captain and a certified GPS Life Journey Facilitator.
(Story written by Robert Sandweg)
This month we want to introduce you to Barbara Dunn, GPS Life Journey Facilitator in Lenoir City, Tennessee. Here's what she said: "Hi, my name is Barb Dunn and I'm a GPS Life Journey Facilitator. I wanted to share my experience with you and where I got to where I am now. I've lived in Lenoir City and I've been a member of First Baptist Lenoir City Church with my husband, Dan for three years now. It was very important after serving in a church for 28 years to find a home and to continue to serve the Lord.
I had joined many things and was interested in many programs in a very alive church, but just wasn't sure if they were the exact things that God wanted me to do when the GPS Life Journey program came along I was very interested. Through that experience, I learned that my mission is to encourage and equip others so that they may fulfill God's purpose in their life.
I can't say enough good things about the GPS Life Journey program. You may not change anything when you get done with it, or you may be emblazoned to do new things, to glorify God. It's a very comprehensive and wonderful program. That really does reflect God's care and his wonderful workmanship in your life.
You were built to glorify God. And I hope that when you experience the GPS Life Journey program, you will come out of it fresh, alive, and encouraged by all that God has for us. He has a plan for significance in our life, and he has a purpose specifically for you. I can't encourage you enough, and I'm excited for you.
God bless. Thank you."
Are you interested in finding out what God's Plan for Significance is in this season of life? Visit our website to learn more and find out what events are happening in person or online via Zoom.
In Person workshops: https://www.gpslifejourney.org/live-workshop.html
Contact Nolen Rollins at firstname.lastname@example.org or 239-860-0096 or send us a message via CONTACT page.
In this video you will get to meet the newest member of GPS Life Journey Board of Directors. In his own words, here is what he says: "My name is Greg Pickens, and to borrow a phrase from a close friend, I'm not retired. I'm just unemployed and too busy to look for a real job. GPS Life Journey is helping me focus on fulfilling what God is wanting me to do at this stage in my life. With one grandchild and two more on the way, it's an exciting and rewarding time of life to watch our two sons grow into godly men with their families.
Learning how to listen to God has always been one of my life goals. Unfortunately, I haven't always listened and followed His direction. GPS is helping me use my experiences, strengths, abilities, values, passion, and spiritual gifts to develop a plan of action to fulfill what I believe is His purpose for this time in my life.
It hasn't been easy. Having spent most of my professional life in high tech. Writing business plans and developing goals, objectives, and tactics. The last thing I wanted to do was develop another plan that I had to follow. I'm learning that this time it's different for a couple of reasons. First, I'm doing what I enjoy doing.
And second, I'm doing it because it's part of my mission, my legacy. And my God given life purpose being asked to join the board of directors for GPS life journey was an honor and a blessing. It is another way that I can help others learn how to increase their significance in life. And they, in turn, can help others fulfill God's purpose and their life by becoming a GPS life journey partner.
Ask me how to become a GPS life partner. And get ready for the adventure."
You can visit our EVENTS page to discover what is happening in Lenoir City, TN or in SW FL.
In this video you'll meet Dr Glen Schaffer. Here's what he said: I live and work as a chiropractor here in Fort Myers, Florida. A handful of years ago, I was introduced to the GPS Life Journey process. Went through that process, actually, with our youngest daughter. But through the process, I was better able to really understand myself, my strengths, my personalities, the gifts that God has given me.
Really how God has made me. I also was able to really hear from God, learn how to listen to God, and specifically identify the God given purpose that I have in my life. Since going through the GPS Life Journey process, I've been able to engage. in fulfilling my purpose in life. I've also been able to serve God through many other avenues, one of those being the GPS Board of Directors, and I'm also currently in the process of becoming a facilitator for GPS Life Journey.
I would encourage you to consider GPS Life Journey and how it might change your life just as it has changed mine."
Check the EVENTS page or CONTACT us to find out more about GPS Life Journey process.
In this month's team member video, part of our Note from Nolen series, please meet Loreen Robertson, a GPS Life Journey Facilitator. Below is a summary of what she says in the video:
"The adventure awaits. That's what my friend gave me two years ago when I moved with my husband across country to Tennessee. After a year and a half of settling into our house, I began to wonder what did God want me to do here and how could I serve? I started earnestly praying and literally within that week, Nolen Rollins called with GPS.
I knew that was the first answer. That God was giving me this first step. Next step, an eight week course to find your purpose and to know how to accomplish that purpose. That was just right up my alley. As a former teacher, I liked homework and assessments and objectives. Now, while it didn't all fit at first, over the course of the eight weeks, it began to fine tune and by the time the course was completed, I had a reaffirming passion for working with children.
With my objective to research, design, and support creative ways to teach children biblical truths, I began to pray for and seek opportunities to, that would align with my ideas. Since GPS, I've had several areas, positions that just seem to work right within my vision. Some of them, literally, God just gave to me and they just fit my skills and passions.
Other, areas I kind of had to walk forward in the direction that my mission statement said. GPS has given me purpose and fulfillment at my church, in my life, and in my community."
If you would like to learn more about becoming a GPS Life Journey Facilitator. Your first step is to participate in the GPS Life Journey process either in person or online via Zoom. Then you must get in touch with us via CONTACT and we will guide you through the facilitator resources (password protected) to complete that training online.
This month's story is from Barb Dunn's GPS testimony! "I work in corporate training and development in the pharma/medical industry. My husband, who is a New York City crane operator, is hoping to retire next year. When we moved away from our home in New Jersey and our church, Hillside Lutheran Brethren, of 28 years to come to Tennessee, finding a church home was very important to us. When we found First Baptist Church of Lenoir City, we were baptized and became members in the Spring of 2021.
While waiting to see what Dan and I could do together in ministry after he retires, I said yes to a few things at our new church but I felt a little scattered. I decided to sign up for the GPS Life Journey in May of 2023. I thought this might be like The Purpose Driven Life I read and facilitated years ago. I was intrigued. And anything Pastor John recommends has to be good! So, I signed up.
I always shared the verse Jeremiah 29:11 with my husband and sons, but this got me thinking. Why did I know that God had a plan and purpose for my life but never asked any more questions? I was pleased when the first verse shared in the GPS Life Journey class was Jeremiah 29:11. GPS Life Journey didn’t only ask the questions for me, it led me step by step to hear God’s answers for this stage of my life and gave me direction!
And as it goes, anytime I go through any training, I look at it as a participant and as a professional. I absolutely loved the program. And as an encouraging “I” personality and one who exists to equip my family and community by encouraging and pointing them to biblical truths to fulfill God‘s purposes in their lives, guess who was encouraged to become a facilitator of the GPS program?
The Lord has a plan for your life too. His word is true and tells us so, again in Jeremiah 29:11. I would be excited to walk with you as you discover what that plan is for the next stage of your life! I cannot encourage you enough to go through the GPS Life Journey program!"
You can find out what GPS Life Journey events are happening on our EVENTS page or use the CONTACT page to get in touch with your questions.
Watch this video to meet one of GPS Life Journey Facilitators... below is a transcript in his own words.
"My name is Jim Robertson and my wife and I relocated to East Tennessee a couple years ago. We were wondering what was our next phase going to be at the new church and new environment. We had a chance to talk with Nolen Rollins. We learned about GPS Life Journey so we took the class.
We learned more about ourselves through a variety of assessments, spiritual gift tests, personality tests, and defining our passions. It really gave me a chance to see that God was leading me to work with assisted living residents.
I was able to put together a mission plan and Roadmap that helped me achieve those goals to where I was doing something I felt was really worthwhile. While we were taking the class we realized that there was an opportunity to help others and to facilitate other GPS courses. It gave us the chance work with others to help them find their passions and to find their goals.
That's something that the GPS class has done for us and we feel real good about what we've been able to do at the church and in our community. As we look at our next phase in life, this is something that we're excited about doing."
If you are interested in becoming a GPS Life Journey Facilitator then please contact us to learn more.
In this video blog you get to meet Bishop Kenneth Eze from Nigeria, as he shares why he loves to be a GPS Life Journey Facilitator.
GPS Life Journey material has helped so many people to discover their God given purpose and to fulfil it. Bishop Kenneth Eze is a witness to that. As a pastor, he says that he was just going through the motions until he participated in GPS Life Journey process. His life was transformed!
As a senior pastor at LivingSpring Christian Assembly, he has seen what a tremendous tool in the hands of the Holy Spirit to help individuals - whatever color, whatever creed or whatever status in life - to be able to find out and discover God's purpose for their lives and fulfil it.
He has seen family lives transformed. Great men and women in ministry and outside of ministry, who felt that their life has just begun when they discovered their GPS Life Journey secrets. He has seen families come back together who were close to the edge of divorce. Who say "ah ha, I now understand why my partner is doing what they are doing and all that."
He has seen pastors who's lives have been changed and their ministries transformed just because they went through the GPS Life Journey process. They discovered that things are not supposed to be so hard to do. That there are things that they are wired to do by God but never done them yet because they had never discovered it until they went through the GPS Life Journey.
He says, "I thank God for GPS Life Journey and for the privilege to be one of the people spreading the message about GPS Life Journey around the world. I thank God for that honor. I want to congratulate Nolen and say God Bless You. Thank you for letting the Holy Spirit use you to bring out great materials."
Nolen Rollins asks in this Note from Nolen how are you doing fulfilling God's purpose for the next stage of your life? All GPS Life Journey graduates should know what God's mission and purpose for your next stage of their life is. You discovered that as a process by participating in GPS Life Journey.
If you've encountered a roadblock or for some reason you have gotten off track on fulfilling God's mission and purpose for your life - we can help you get back on track!
We have many certified GPS Life Journey Facilitator Coaches all around the world. They can sit down with you and have a brief conversation. By asking you questions and guiding you, can help you get back on track in fulfilling God's purpose for the next stage of your life. Bringing Him great glory through your life!
We hope to hear from you soon. God bless you.
I questioned if that applied to me since I have been involved in Kingdom ministry for many years. I could not imagine learning anything new about “my purpose.” Yet, out of curiosity, I signed up. Since then, my life has been changed.
GPS Life Journey has given me “A New Beginning.” Now, I am ready and excited to live a life of significance, have greater impact in the Kingdom of God, and fulfill my God-given destiny of helping others learn how God has uniquely shaped them for a specific mission in His Kingdom.
What are you waiting for? Sign up for GPS Life Journey today and live your live on mission with God!
Mary Sue Jordan
Executive Director, Lenoir City, Tennessee Housing Authority
GPS Life Journey Facilitator
Nolen Rollins, Founder & President of GPS Life Journey