Friends, we are so excited to introduce you to our Next Step . . .
What is ThirdChair ministries?
ThirdChair ministries is the brand new ministry Roy & Christine Cochran have just started. We believe God has invited us to take this next step with Him in loving people, in helping them discover and deepen their personal relationship with God, to gain an identity as sons & daughters being loved by a heavenly Father and to manifest that love to their world. The specific people group of our focus is and has been the creative community of people known as artists. We believe that through ThirdChair, God desires to encourage artists to make room for the reality of His presence. ThirdChair will be active in setting a table and opening doors for artists, that through their artistic expression, each manifestation of the love of God that pours out of their hearts will bring light, beauty, hope, healing and love into our world, into our communities, into our churches and into our hearts.
To me, THIRD CHAIR represents a huge shift. A normal shift for anyone in relationship with the Living God. A shift from talking about God to speaking with Him. A shift from learning about God to knowing Him. A shift from trying to live the christian life correctly to simply letting Him love me. A shift from serving in ministry for Him to being invited to love people with Him. This is the reality that we are leading the creative community of artists into, a life with God. A life experiencing Him loving us. ThirdChair is setting a table for the love of God in the hearts of artists.
At Our Core: We are living in an age in history where God is revealing Himself as Father in an unprecedented way. His invitation to us is to live as His children with the hearts of sons & daughters. We are finding that this revelation and sound biblical teaching of the Love of the Father working through hearts that are open is producing a transforming, life-giving message of Love, Life and Hope throughout the earth. We are finding a Father that loves us with a love that reaches beyond all human expression of what love is. This truly is a love that surpasses knowledge. Through His life, death and resurrection, Jesus has opened the way to the Father.
Saturating the earth with the good news through the creativity of artists experiencing the love of God
Providing inspiring, transformative encounters for the creative community of artists, bringing them into their true identities as sons & daughters and encouraging their creative reach in this world as artists, both in the church and outside the church.
Setting a table and opening doors for artists, conversing with artists about identity and possibilities, connecting artists to their hearts and their destinies.
Pastoring & Mentoring - Each and every week Roy has the honor of giving his time, his talents and his heart to worship leaders, songwriters, film makers, visual artists, technical artists, musicians, producers, authors . . . you get it . . . to ARTISTS. These conversations are the backbone of our ministry. It's where transformation happens in the loving environment of real relationship. Roy's reputation of love, experience, safety and his unique heart for artists has invitations and requests for his time coming from all over the world. It's both an honor and unfortunate that Roy's heart to mentor artists is so unique. Our heart is to "activate" as many mentors as possible to join us at ThirdChair in developing the spiritual life & creative work of artists.
Artists Gatherings - Roy has been curating artists gatherings on a local & national level for the last 8 years. A new season of Gatherings are currently being curated for Southern California called The Artist Table. Artists are invited to come together to share a meal and feed each other's souls. These unique times together are filled with inspiration, love, space and the gift of BEING with others like you . . . with artists who are "all in" with the calling God has given them.
Songwriter Getaways, Workshops & Coaching - Songs have the unique ability to go right into the heart. Their place and value in culture and in the church are undeniable. Millions of songs are downloaded by millions of people every day. When the hearts of today's songwriters are alive to the love of God AND are skilled at the craft of songwriting, they have the ability to speak into the hearts of everyone who listens. In church, the songs we sing inform our theology as much as any sermon. Today's & tomorrow's songwriters need our help today. Our churches and our culture need music that can speak life into them with beauty & truth.
Retreat Cottage - We have vision for a retreat cottage or travel trailer in the backyard of the Cochran's home to give Artists some space during their time of ministry. There is a pretty steady stream of people who come to stay with the Cochran's for short term or longer stays. Many are artists who come for a time of refreshment, for some soul care or just a for visit. God has done TREMENDOUS work in the hearts of those who come to stay with them. Currently, guests stay in their Guest Room in their home.
The Story Behind the Name
So, where did the name ThirdChair come from, you might be wondering? Here's the story behind the name.
I had been serving at a large megachurch as their worship pastor for a few years when I began to hit some walls spiritually and relationally. I really had no one I thought I could talk to about it. A mutual friend recommended that I go see a couple, Jeff & Joy Beal who ministered out of their house up in Encinitas, CA. So I did. Jeff, recommended that just the two of us meet.
When I arrived, I was struck by how humble and how lovingly optimistic he was that the Lord would speak to my heart. He offered me a seat and then pulled out a third chair for someone else. I asked, “Is someone else joining us this morning?” To which he replied, “Oh yes! This chair is for the Lord. Let’s not just talk about spiritual things and what He would have us do or what He might think. Let’s ask Him to speak with us right here. It’s not polite to talk about Him & what He would say and not give Him an opportunity to speak for Himself. After all, He is alive, He is here and He really cares about what you are troubled by. So let’s give Him a chance.”
I think I rolled my eyes, of course not so he could see, but I “went along with it.” Jeff began to thank God and encouraged me to join in. We opened up our bibles and he thanked Jesus. He thanked the Holy Spirit. He thanked the Father for caring so much about me, for knowing everything that was going on in my life, for walking right beside me even though I may not have known He was present. He thanked God for His calling on my life. Then He said, “Roy why don't you tell Him what’s troubling you?” So I did. And as I spoke, I had the real sense that He was sitting RIGHT THERE IN THAT THIRD CHAIR listening, caring deeply, hearing me. When I had finished, Jeff then gently said, “Now let’s listen to what He might say.”
So I did. As we sat there in silence, we looked up verses that came to mind our bibles, my heart and mind began to go to memories, then He directed me to some scriptures. Jeff seemed to be able to know this and asked me, “what is He showing you?” So I told Him. Then He shared some things that the Lord was showing him regarding me. He asked me if it made sense. It made wonderful perfect sense not only to my head but to my heart. Then Jeff wrote down a scripture and a sentence or two that the Lord had spoke to us about on a 3x5 card and gave it to me. Then He sat back, smiled and said, “Isn’t He wonderful?”
That day began a relationship for the two of us that continued on for the next 17 years before he went to be with the Lord. He was my friend, a pastor to me, a mentor & guide, a spiritual father. It was as if when I was with Jeff, I had “improved 3G signal strength” to hear from the Lord. That probably was true . . . for a while, till I had faith for myself. That day also began a fresh new dimension of my relationship with God.
To me, THIRD CHAIR represents a huge shift. A normal shift for anyone in relationship with the Living God. A shift from talking about God to speaking with Him. A shift from learning about God to knowing Him. A shift from trying to live the christian life correctly to simply letting Him love me. A shift from serving in ministry for Him to being invited to love people with Him. This is the reality that we are leading the creative community of artists into, a life with God. A life experiencing Him loving us.
So What Have You Been Up to Over The Last 3 Month's Roy?
That's a great question. The most direct answer is that Father has been working on my heart in a deeper way. He's been convincing me to an even greater degree of His love for me, teaching me how to receive from Him in deeper parts of my heart. He's been showing me where fear has been robbing me. He's been mining out the gold in our relationship. He has been focusing my heart on His invitation to join Him in loving Artists in a transformative way. This process is one that is difficult to communicate about while you are in the midst of it. It's not been that fun or pleasant but it is love because it's leading me into greater depths of freedom, focus and dependency on Him. And how can I walk with Father inviting people into greater revelations of freedom through being loved by Him when I'm not experiencing that same freedom? I'm not thinking there is an "arrival point" in this journey but I believe there are places He brings us into on our journey with Him where we experience REST and PEACE no matter what is going on around us. So while being in this deepening process for the last few months, it's been difficult to communicate. I have come to a place where I just need to let you know where we are at . . . today.
For close to 30 years, I have served in full time ministry with some amazing ministries. I was honored to serve with each and everyone of them on their church & ministry staffs. NOW, for the first time, Father has called us out to begin a NEW work with Him that we will be leading. So when I say we are going out "on our own" it's not entirely true because Christine and I have YOU, our brothers and sisters who know us, pray for us, support us and walk with us. And we will be leaning on you and Father like never before. In fact, it's an impossible dream He has invited us into but we are ALL IN!
I believe NOW is the time for groups of creatively gifted sons & daughters, aka ARTISTS, to be:
Gathered • Inspired • Encouraged • Supported • Celebrated & Loved in a unique, creative and powerful way, starting in Southern California.
Help Us Launch
Join Us By Becoming a Monthly Supporter
Throughout history, the arts and artists have always depended on the generosity and investment of patrons who see the value and need for art to continue to inspire, inform and beautify our world and culture. The Lord has moved many of these patrons to fuel His artists. ThirdChair needs supernatural provision from God through everyday people like yourself who hear and respond to the promptings of God in your heart. We need regular, monthly supporters to partner with us so that our investment into the spiritual life & creative work of artists through Mentoring, Pastoring, Gatherings, Workshops and times of Ministry can be a transforming gift. Your gift allows Third Chair to be that gift.
Would you prayerfully consider becoming a monthly supporter today or to make a generous one-time gift for this month? Launching out on our own has required Christine and I to put everything we have out on the line. We are all in and very confident of this calling Father has invited us into. We have been SO encouraged by the Lord and by so many of you who have already been faithfully supporting us through the years.
At the heart of this invitation please hear that we are moving forward with ThirdChair in peace. Our provision is the Lord. Our rest is the Lord. Our hope is that we can operate in this expression of Love called ThirdChair ministries WITH YOU. There is literally a NATION of people who are creatively gifted and are called to express their heart as artists. They are hiding in plain sight. While what they DO is easy to see, much of their spiritual lives are not being nurtured by anyone. Father has shared His heart with us to lovingly serve & nurture this people group into their place in the kingdom, as sons & daughters and their voice & expression in this world as artists. You are invited to love them with us.
Please click on Become a Monthly Donor button to join our ThirdChair ministry family.
Please click on Make A One-Time Gift Today to support ThirdChair ministries this month.
"Please make your DONATIONS before the 25th of each month."
*note that the cut-off day for each month's gifts is the 25th. Gifts made after the 25th will not be received by ThirdChair ministries for 30 days.
Thank you for the time you've invested in reading our news letter and to allow us to share this exciting invitation to minister to artists with you. Love, Roy & Christine
I believe when you invest into artists it will have a direct impact on:
CHURCHES where many of these artists are vital leaders of congregations who reach thousands of people every weekend. The result; richer, bolder and more mature worship in our houses of faith. More diversity in our expressions from neo-liturgical eucharistic communities to modern communities. We need to widen the narrow band-width of expression in our times of worship.
COMMUNITIES where they are influential stewards redeeming culture through film, social media, music, art and other creative endeavors. The result; creative awakening to the saving grace of God in our culture.
CAUSES where many are encouraged to step out our faith to support needs locally and globally. The result; renewed awareness and compassion for those in our midst and abroad. Artists are always at the forefront of causes.