I have a new favorite Australian. Whereas it used to be a toss up between Nicole Kidman and Anthony Wiggle, Mike Rayson is now my sure favorite.
Our church in Pontiac just completed four days of worship experiences, teaching sessions, and Bible studies led by Mike. I met him last year at a pastor's convention where he was leading worship. Since then he's become a good friend. Mike is THE BEST STORYTELLER I have ever heard. I know this not only from hearing him tell them around my kitchen table, but also when preaching.
Before moving to the United States to travel around as a worship leader, preacher, teacher, and evangelist (in the best positive sense of the word), Mike lived in Australia where he worked as a pastor, a radio show host, and a traveling musician/speaker. A few years ago, Robert Schuller recruited him to tour around Australia providing music before he spoke each night.
An interesting thing about how Mike chooses to do ministry is that he doesn't charge anything when he comes to churches. When he began traveling around sharing God's word through music and preaching, he made a decision not to charge large amounts of money for his services as some of his peers in Christian music were doing. Instead, he only receives money from love offerings and CD sales. This means that he's much more accessible than many Christian musicians. And at the same quality. In the Christmas seasons of 2004 and 2005, Mike's song "Hey Joe" was number one on the Christian charts in Australia. He's the real deal.
If you're interesting in booking Mike for either a Sunday service, or for a series of worship experiences, email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. To get a sample of his music, check out his MySpace site at http://www.myspace.com/mikerayson. The official website for Mike Rayson International Ministries is www.mikerayson.net.
By the way, Mike doesn't know I'm writing this, and he definitely did not ask me to. I've often heard that the best way to spread the news of anything is to get people so excited about it that they do it naturally. I'm just excited about Mike's ministry and had to share about it. I highly commend him to you. Contact him for a booking as soon as you can.
PICTURED ABOVE: (left to right) Lon Alderman, Mike Rayson, my daughter, and me.