11 Things to Teach Your Son Before He Heads Off to College

September 24, 2019By PK ManagerBoard, Values

By Todd Wagner

Much to my surprise, I have found dropping off (“turning loose” may be a better term) a young man on a university campus to be a much more sobering experience then dropping off a young woman.

The first two times I loaded the Suburban and headed to college towns it was to drop off my oldest daughters, which, as you can imagine, has its own set of concerns. When I dropped off Ally and Kirby, they were ready to meet, enjoy, and integrate into their college campuses with their eyes wide open and their hearts cemented to the idea that whatever college was about, it was more than just themselves.

My girls and I had long ago shared all the necessary conversations about the duties and dangers of being a young woman in a university setting. Though it is never easy to leave any child you have invested in and enjoyed daily for eighteen years in a strange land to care for themselves, I knew it was time and we were all sad, excited, and ready.

Fast-forward a few years and all of a sudden my wife and I were about to make our way to Fayetteville, Arkansas, home of the Razorbacks (the boy had said “no” to the Ivy League option) to drop off our firstborn son. As the day neared, and much to my surprise, I had a growing and much different sense of responsibility in sending off a young man to college then I did a young woman. I knew college meant my son, like my daughters before him, would have a new and greater freedom to live and lead his life as he wanted, AND I knew that there were dads, just like me years earlier, who were dropping off their freshman daughters where they would either be blessed or burdened by the young men around them.

One might think that dropping off a girl and leaving her alone around a bunch of newly unleashed young “men” with unlimited freedom and limited maturity was the more daunting task, but such was not the case for me. Without going into too much detail, suffice it to say that I found it more sobering to turn loose a potential predator then I did potential prey.

What you have below is a summary of the last hours of conversation this father had with his son as he dropped him off to prayerfully be faithful in “Fayetteville and forever.” I pray daily that these truths would be embedded in his heart for more than just the four years of college, and you can be certain that I am praying now that they will be in some way useful to you as you seek to be faithful yourself and with any men you are charged with shaping. Fayetteville is not the only place that needs faithful men…right where you are does too.

So to my son Cooper (and later Cade and Camp) and to you today, I say…

It’s all about Jesus.

  • College is not a time to taste the world. It’s a time to increase your appetite for God’s Word.
  • First, believe that college is not a time to sow your wild oats. It is a time to show your world Whose you are.
  • John 1:1-4Colossians 1:15-171 Corinthians 6:19-20

Jesus is all about bringing you to the Father, and the Father is all about restoring His glory in you.

If you know the Father and the Son and yield to the Holy Spirit, you will love and serve others. 

You can’t love and serve others if you don’t lead and feed yourself. 

How you start each day, each week, and each semester determines more than you can imagine. 

Who you choose to run with and live life with is how you will choose to run and live. 

Who you are when you’re alone is alone who you are. 

Women are not play toys. They are God’s daughters. Honor them. Protect them. Serve them.

  • Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
  • Wait to taste the lips of a woman. Don’t waste yourself on lust.
  • Consult your dad on all dates and consider every time you are alone with a woman a date.
  • 1 Thessalonians 4:3-8; Proverbs 31:30Proverbs 22:31 Timothy 5:2

Do not choose your friends or your future career by how much fame or finances they offer.

Be wise. Be humble. Be fun. Beware of the lie that those three are mutually exclusive.

  • You have a powerful enemy who wants you to be foolish, be prideful, and believe that faithfulness to the Father is a fast track to futility. He is a liar.
  • John 8:44Proverbs 13:13-15Psalm 16:11

Be ready. Be bold. Be kind. Be faithful.

If you’re dropping off your own son at college (or know that you will be in a few short years), now is the time to teach him these things. And if you are the newly-minted freshman yourself, commit to building your adult life on these life-giving truths. 

Todd Wagner is Senior Pastor and Elder at Watermark Community Church, and the author of Come and See: Everything You Ever Wanted in the One Place You Would Never Look. This article originally appeared on his blog here.

Promise Keepers Announces New President

August 16, 2019By PK ManagerBoard, News

Judge Vance Day will serve as president alongside Ken Harrison, the Chairman and CEO of Promise Keepers.

Our Lord is calling men across the nation, indeed the world, to be Servant Kings. Each generation has a calling upon it to stand tall for what God is doing here on the earth.

In the 1990s, we sensed God moving and accepted His challenge to step up and call men to action. Praise God, we saw Promise Keepers become the largest movement of men in the history of the church, with millions of men repenting of their sins and dedicating their lives to Christ. Now, we sense God’s calling upon Promise Keepers once again. We all know that our nation urgently needs a revival of godly men living out true masculinity.

Last month we laid hands upon Judge Vance Day and affirmed his calling to be President of Promise Keepers. He is a man of great integrity and steadfast resilience. He has been tested in the crucible of intense fire and shown his mettle to be that of the Lord.  He is a faithful husband, father, brother, and friend. Judge Day is a man who mirrors the admonition of 1 Timothy 3: 1-7. He is a man of the Word and possesses a joy which only comes out of severe testing. We trust him. 

Ken Harrison, who will continue as Chairman and CEO of Promise Keepers, and Vance Day have stepped into a rich heritage of leaders who have accepted the challenge to call men together for restoration and revival – not only in this nation, but across the world. 

Today, men of God have a choice to make. Are they committed to reading the word of God daily? Are they determined to embrace brothers who are racially different? Are they loyal to their local pastor and church? Are they protecting their wives and children? We are convinced the answers are “yes” from Ken and Vance to each of these questions! Accordingly, we challenge men of God to join Ken and Vance as warriors determined to ignite revival in America in this hour!

We congratulate Vance as he accepts this great responsibility and calling. We will be praying for him. We ask that you do so as well.

Pastor Todd Wagner Is Joining Promise Keepers Board of Directors

April 2, 2019By Ken HarrisonBoard

“The Scriptures exhort us to ‘act like men’ (1 Cor 16:13) … That’s why Promise Keepers is so needed today: calling men to God’s standard, convening them in mass gatherings, and commissioning them to be changemakers in their families, communities and local churches. That is why I’m so glad to stand with them.” — Todd Wagner

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. — Ken Harrison, CEO and chairman of Promise Keepers, announced Monday that Todd Wagner, founding pastor of Watermark Community Church in Dallas, is joining the board of directors. Promise Keepers, founded in 1990 by former University of Colorado football coach Bill McCartney, was one of the largest Christ-centered movements ever. Today, Promise Keepers is calling men back to courageous and bold servant-leadership by sparking a movement that will mobilize millions of men to follow Christ into today’s broken world as changemakers for their families, churches and communities.

Todd Wagner and a small group of friends established Watermark Community Church in Dallas in November 1999. Watermark was born out of a desire to connect people with the richness, adventure, and fullness of life that comes through Christ alone and to reach the unchurched, de-churched, dead-churched and unmoved. Todd serves as senior pastor and elder at Watermark, which has become one of the largest and fastest-growing churches in the United States. Watermark is also home to the Church Leaders Conference, which exists to encourage and challenge other leaders and faith communities with God’s vision for His Church.

He has been a keynote speaker at national and international leadership conferences, a guest contributor to The Dallas Morning News and other national media outlets, and is the author of Come and See: Everything You Ever Wanted in the One Place You Would Never Look. His weekly video podcast, “Real Truth Real Quick” reaches tens of thousands of people each month. 

Ken Harrison, CEO and chairman of the board of Promise Keepers, said, 

“Todd Wagner is an inspirational leader and a man’s man, marked by an unswerving commitment to studying, living and proclaiming the Word of God. As Todd has written, the Bible is ‘Tried. Tested. Trustworthy. Proven. Truth I have experienced and Truth I am experiencing.’ Todd is a consummate family man, active and present in the lives of his six children, coaching their games and taking them to school. In this day of confusion about what it means to be a real man, and overwhelm as the busyness of our schedules and the demands of our lives leaves us strangers to our wives and children, Todd reminds us the Scriptures point us to a different, higher, life-giving standard.”

Todd Wagner said, 

“Men today need to step up, speak out, stand strong, stay humble and serve King Jesus. As a father to three girls and three boys, I have been given the great privilege of helping my children sail toward the right harbor of Christlikeness and the responsibility of helping them know the right winds that will take them there. The Scriptures exhort us to ‘act like men’ (1 Cor. 16:13), yet when you ask many men today what it is to be a godly man, they cannot give you a biblically based answer (much less model a biblically informed life). That’s why Promise Keepers is so strategic today: calling men to God’s standard, convening them in mass gatherings, and commissioning them to be changemakers in their families, communities and local churches. That is why I’m so glad to stand with them.”

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Promise Keepers Board Member: Alveda King

March 13, 2019By Ken HarrisonBoard, News

Ken Harrison, chairman and president of Promise Keepers, announced the appointment of Alveda King, niece of civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King, to the Promise Keepers board of directors. Promise Keepers, founded in 1990 by former University of Colorado football coach Bill McCartney, is a Christ-centered organization calling men to courageous and bold servant-leadership by sparking a movement that will mobilize millions of men to follow Christ into today’s broken world as change makers for their families, churches and communities.

King grew up in the civil rights movement. Her family home in Birmingham, Alabama, was bombed, as was her father’s church office in Louisville, Kentucky. She was jailed during the open housing movement. She sees the pro-life movement as a continuation of the civil rights struggle.

Currently, King is a minister of the gospel of Jesus Christ, serving as executive director of civil rights for the unborn for Gospel of Life, headed up by Father Frank Pavone of Priests for Life. She is also part of the teaching and music ministry as well as former executive director of African Humanitarian Christian Fellowship, founded by her mentor, the late Pastor Allen McNair, founder of Believers’ Bible Christian Church in Atlanta, Georgia.

King is a former college professor, holding a Master of Arts degree in business management, and was awarded an honorary doctorate from Saint Anselm College. She also served in the Georgia State House of Representatives, is a presidential appointee and also an accomplished author, actress and songwriter.

Alveda lives in Atlanta and is a regular columnist for Newsmax.com “Insiders” section as well as a Fox News contributor. She is the grateful mother of six and a blessed grandmother.

Ken Harrison said,

It’s time for men to start acting like men. Calling men to be men isn’t chauvinistic or somehow against women—although it is countercultural and controversial. But it is a fact that when men check out of their families, women suffer the most, as do their children—whether born or unborn. Our goal is to start a global movement of healthy masculinity sourced in absolute surrender to God that will empower and encourage men to be better fathers, husbands, friends and men.

Few people understand social movements like Dr. Alveda King. Few have sacrificed for change like Dr. Alveda King. But all-too-many women —including Dr. Alveda King—understand what happens to women and children when men fail to act like godly men. That’s why I wanted Alveda to join the board of Promise Keepers—to remind us of the stakes at risk in our mission, the urgency of the need, and to provide the wisdom to help us chart a way forward.

Alveda King said:

A pressing civil rights issue of our day is the plight of the unborn, murdered by the millions, defenseless, voiceless and “choiceless.” We are praying that men will rise up as husbands and fathers, leading to genuine life, liberty and happiness in Christ for all; born and unborn.

As my uncle, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” The Promise Keepers message and movement is needed now more than ever, and I’m glad to serve by sharing insight, energy and prayerful support to the Promise Keepers board.

This article appeared in Charisma News and Christian Black News.

Promise Keepers Board: Chad Hennings

February 28, 2019By Ken HarrisonBoard, News

No one has the resumè that Chad Hennings has. 

He’s a simple Iowa farm kid who had the opportunity to attend the U.S. Airforce Academy, fly 45 combat missions over Iraq, won three Super Bowl rings as a defensive lineman for the Dallas Cowboys, founded and leads Wingmen Ministries, and, most importantly, prioritizes being a husband and father. 

And, now, Chad Hennings is joining the Board of Directors of Promise Keepers. 

No one is more thrilled to have Hennings’ leadership on the board than Ken Harrison, Chairman of Promise Keepers. 

“Chad Hennings isn’t just a football legend,” Harrison acknowledged. He’s a true American hero who set aside personal gain and delayed his NFL career to fight for his country as an A-10 pilot. Chad selflessly serves his family, his church, and his community. His heart for men — and the impact men have on their families — compelled him to start Wingmen Ministries. Chad’s experience in creating ‘cultures of excellence’ is just what we need, and his insight into the power of commitment — keeping promises — is exactly who we aspire to be as Promise Keepers,” Harrison insisted. 

“In order to attain excellence one must first live a lifestyle of excellence,” Hennings said with conviction. “Excellence isn’t a destination; it’s an identity.” 

Hennings has lived this message for most of his life and has taken this message across the world at the invitation of some of the most distinguished executive audiences ranging from American Airlines to Bank of America, General Motors to Citigroup, and a host of U.S. Governmental agencies. 

Hennings has also been a philanthropic leader in the Dallas/Fort Worth area as a member of the Board of Directors of Christian Community Action, an organization that provides assistance to at-risk families. 

He challenges audiences to dare to be excellent and inspires businesses to create cultures of excellence. “People and organizations don’t do great things to become great; great people and organizations do great things,” Hennings asserted. He credits his post-NFL career success to concepts he espouses on striving to live a lifestyle of excellence. 

As founder of Wingmen Ministries, Hennings equips men to be better husbands, better fathers, and more Christ-like examples. Hennings affirms,

“As the men of a church go, so goes the church. And as the church goes, so goes the nation.When a child receives Christ, there is a 3.5 percent chance the rest of the family will follow.
When a mother receives Christ, there is a 17 percent chance the rest of the family will follow.
When a father receives Christ, there is a 90 percent chance the rest of the family will follow.

Now more than ever, men need to know what godly masculinity is, commit to it, model it in their sphere of influence, and band together with like-minded men for support and sharpening. Promise Keepers is all about these things, and I’m honored to join them.” 

These days Hennings also serves as COO/Partner at Rubicon Representation, a Texas-based commercial real estate services firm. He also juggles speaking engagements and corporate advisory roles. “One of the things I’ve always been intrigued by has been business, so I’ve kind of been a serial entrepreneur,” Hennings said. 

Notably, Hennings has written three books, the latest of which was released in 2015. “Forces of Character” compiles a series of conversations about reaching potential, being a positive influence, and making a difference for others. The book features a diverse group of subjects, ranging from sports figures Roger Staubach, Troy Aikman, Jason Garrett, and Gregg Popovich to a survivor of the Auschwitz concentration camp, a Space Shuttle commander, and a homelessness expert. Hennings previously authored “It Takes Commitment” and “Rules of Engagement,” which were released in 1996 and 2010, respectively. 

Chad and his wife, Tammy, have a son, Chase, and a daughter, Brenna. They currently reside in Flower Mound, Texas.