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Happy TWLOHA Day!!!!

Friday, 13 November, 2009
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If you are unaware, today is “To Write Love On Her Arm” Day where people are encouraged not only to write love on their arms but to live out love in their lives.

Came across a great article that has some good reflections about this day, read it here. (Taken from twloha blog)

I hope that you participated in the event and if you didn’t, you still have time!! Show someone love who needs just a little!

we will be the hopeful

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Something is wrong here

Monday, 9 November, 2009
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Sometimes, the church isn’t so much about being the church anymore. I came across this article about a pastor committing suicide. This is a sad sad thing and nothing I like reading about or talking about. But as I was reading it, a few thoughts crossed my mind and I wanna share them with you.

~~ This is just a reminder for pastors of any type to make sure rest is included in their busy week. Each week, we need times of rest and solitude, an opportunity to reconnect to God. The job of a pastor can be extremely busy and almost wreaking havoc in their lives.

~~ Pastor’s should not have to suffer in silence. It is ridiculous to think that a pastor of a church should not struggle with the everyday things that people who aren’t pastor’s struggle with. It is ludicrous for a church to demand perfection out of a pastor and when they do, they keep it inside. Pastors internalize their mistakes as not being “good enough” and have no one to turn to. This creates an unhealthy atmosphere.

~~ When a pastor cannot be honest with his congregation, they lose the authentic community that Christ longs for for the church. This comes right along with not expecting perfection. When the church recognizes that the pastor is human just like the rest of them and they ALLOW him to admit that, he is free from that pressure. He is free from feeling like he has to put up a front to his church and to everyone around him. Can you imagine if every church embraced this idea of FREEING their pastors?

~~ Every pastor needs a support system or team around them to help encourage them or help guide them. We all need people in our lives to be there for us to talk with or work things out with. For myself personally, I work better with groups of people. I think better when I can verbally work out my thoughts with other people, hear other people’s thoughts, etc.

~~ If you are a pastor and you think it is wrong to have thoughts that might contradict the church and your faith in God, it’s okay. You’re a human being, you still have a sin nature. Jesus Christ was the only perfect example for us to follow, not you or I. It’s okay if you are struggling with a great theological truth that you, as a pastor of people, are “suppose” to have an answer to and be able to explain to people.

~~ The writer of this article says you are committing career suicide if you have to seek treatment or ask for time off. Unfortunately, this may be true in some cases. But church governing bodies need to take a closer look at allowing retreats for pastor’s several times a year, if not more. At the Covenant Church, our lead pastor just required those on staff to have two scheduled prayer retreats through the next year and actually is encouraging us to find time for four of these within the next season of ministry. This was a great reminder that I need that time to be given energy, vision, direction, and encouragement.

My heart truly aches for David’s family and his church. My prayer is that his family will find encouragement and healing and that God would be glorified in the coming months. Please pray for David’s family and his church as they process this incident and mourn the loss.


desperate

Sunday, 8 November, 2009
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This past summer, I took our Sr. High students to a Covenant week long conference called CHIC in Knoxville, TN. At this conference, our students and our leaders were given bracelets so that we could be identified with the conference. If you’ve ever been an adult leader or pastor in charge of students, you understand just how important these bracelets are at conferences. Anyways, after the conference, I decided to leave my bracelet around my wrist as a reminder for me to remember what we had learned at the conference about being “Undone”. Some may call this tacky or unprofessional but for me, it was a reminder of the week with my students.

This bracelet reminded me about the times my students and I had in our nightly small group, a time to debrief the day and to think about what our main session speaker had challenged us with for the evening. We had some good nights of discussion and some good nights of being challenged.

I watched some of our students grow closer to the person that God wants them to be, I watched students from all over begin to understand who God had created them to be and do. I watched students from all over try to push God away during that week and to try to pretend that everything in their lives are perfect, hunky doory. But they aren’t.

I watched drained youth pastors receive a new breath and a hear God’s voice in ministry again. I watched some frustrated, tired youth pastors find restoration and find strength in the one true vine, through the holy spirit. I watched some youth pastors, some who were discouraged and we’re against a brick wall, see the light at the end of the tunnel. They were reminded why we do what we do.  I was in that boat. God reminded me why I do what I do. Why I get so frustrated and heart broken and why it is all worth it for the  Kindgom of God.

I watched some parents be challenged by some youth half their age. I watched them be inspired by their actions and words, I watched them smile.

I watched God move. I saw God work in the lives of high school teenagers, who face sometimes the hardest trials we can imagine from their peers. God’s spirit opened my eyes to what he is doing in students’ lives. He opened my eyes to what he is doing in my life.

I was inspired and moved by God’s word. All these things are part of my memory from CHIC . These are things I want to remember when I look back on my first trip to CHIC.

This bracelet meant these things and many more to me. It was encouraging to look at my wrist and see this bracelet. It was a reminder of God’s faithfulness. It’s a lot of things.

This morning, this bracelet fell off. I was kinda stunned at this moment. I hadn’t really thought about what it would be like for the bracelet to fall off or if I ever lost the bracelet. These memories that this bracelet brings were not only available b/c of the bracelet. But when the bracelet broke, I was reminded of something: like the theme of CHIC “Undone”, my life must become “undone” like that bracelet. My life must fall apart for the glory of God. I don’t want to hold myself or my life together. I want God to hold me together, God to tear me apart, God to mold me. Unfortunately, these desires are not always the desires I strive for. But I am learning how to chase after the things more that God intends for me to chase after. You may feel like sometimes God isn’t holding you together. You may feel like God has abandoned you. But in fact, he hasn’t. He is still there, waiting for you to tell him that you need him to hold you together. This statement isn’t an easy statement to make and in fact, somedays I decide to try and hold myself together. But i quickly am reminded that
I DESPERATELY NEED GOD.

This bracelet, that might not have meant much to anybody else, when it broke, reminded me that i need to be broken and undone.

Become Undone.

Below here is the benediction the entire stadium of students and pastors would speak together before leaving each night:

And now as we go on our way
may Jesus undo our watered-down,
sanitized and sugar-coated faith,
so that we may follow Him into a heroic life
where our comfort zones are undone
so that we are not afraid to become
countercultural and counter comfortable.

Holy Spirit, reveal a God who is bigger
than all we can figure out
and who loves us beyond what we can imagine.

Give us the courage and the commitment
to work together so that none
of God’s work remains undone.


Rapping McD!

Monday, 2 November, 2009
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Found this in a news story….It’s Hilarious!!!

 

Utah Teens Cited After McDonald’s Rap Flap

by THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

A rap by four teenagers at a McDonald’s has gotten them a bad rap in one Utah city.

The teens were cited by American Fork police earlier this week for disorderly conduct after they rapped their order at a McDonald’s drive-through.

The teens said they were imitating a popular video on YouTube. They rapped their order, which begins with, “I need a double cheeseburger and hold the lettuce …” once quickly before repeating it more slowly.

Spenser Dauwalder said employees at the restaurant told him and his friends they were holding up the line and needed to order or leave.

The 18-year-old said nobody was in line. He and his three 17-year-old friends left without buying anything.

American Fork Police Sgt. Gregg Ludlow says a manager wrote down the car’s license plate number and called police. The teens were later cited by officers at a high school parking lot outside a volleyball match.

“We thought, you know, just teenagers out having fun,” Dauwalder told KSL Newsradio. “We didn’t think it would escalate to that.”

Disorderly conduct citations are issued when someone does something to cause annoyance or alarm, Ludlow said. The citation is an infraction similar to a speeding ticket, Ludlow said.

“It was not just that they were rapping, they continued to hold things up,” Ludlow said.

Ludlow said the teens were asked several times to speak plainly and that ultimately the manager came outside.

The owner-operator of the McDonald’s said in a statement that the issue was about employees’ safety at the restaurant in American Fork, about 30 miles south of Salt Lake City.

“The employee in question felt that her safety was at risk as a result of the alleged actions of these individuals in the drive-thru, not as a result of them rapping their order,” franchisee Conny Kramer said in the statement. “As such, she contacted the local authorities.”

But Sharon Dauwalder, Spenser’s mother, said they will fight it nonetheless.

“We have to,” she told The Associated Press on Thursday. “The citation is ther


red letters….

Saturday, 31 October, 2009
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God,

For so long i’ve tried to do this whole “life” thing on my own at times. i have completely forgotten your promises and your faithfulness to me. God, tonight i was reminded of how much i desperately need you. you reminded me tonight of how desperate my need is for someone greater than i. sometimes, my actions don’t measure up to my words and sometimes, well a lot of the time i fail. but you do not. you are everlasting from one year to the next; your love does not stop flowing to me, even in my deepest sins and darkest times. in my most greatest moments of needing something, too often  i do not choose the only thing that can fulfill. too often i run into my “secure” places where i find rest, or at least temporary rest. but god, i’m tired of chasing this “temporary” thing. i’m tired of finding myself only temporarily secure and realizing that the thing i need the most, has been there the entire time. so god, i’m asking you to be my beautiful rescue. be the thing that creates in me beauty and glory given to you and NOT TO ME! give me the strength and the humility to step out of the way so you can continue your kingdom work in me and through me, i can share you with other people who need a beautiful rescue. show me how to do that. this beautiful rescue may not always be “beautiful”. there will be bumps in my road and i will hit them. but god, in my heart, in my soul, in my mind, and in my strength, make me your beautiful rescue.

for those of you reading this, can you share with me the last time you really had a “red letter” talk with God?  a talk in which you simply poured out everything that you know god is putting on your heart. ya know, maybe you don’t even think God listens to you, but he really really does. more than anything, he wants you to talk with him and to have a relationship with him. this “beautiful rescue” i speak of isn’t just for me. thats the thing that makes it beautiful! this love God has for you and i is not seclusive. you don’t need to belong to a club or to have gone to church for a year or gone to confession. these things, are all secondary and important, but more than anything in the world, god wants a relationship full of love between he and you. have you ever had a conversation with God? what has he told you?

You matter to God. God desires you. The creator of the universe, the breather of all stars, the God of love wants a relationship with you. How freakin awesome is that? if you don’t remember anything from this post, i beg you, please, to remember this: God desires you and wants a relationship with you.


Give me your eyes

Wednesday, 28 October, 2009
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Wednesday, 28 October, 2009
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a thing of beauty…


Mac Book Pro


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Authentic Love – UpOut

Tuesday, 27 October, 2009
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So i’m preaching this sunday at church. i am really excited about the opportunity to portray God’s love and truth to people. i will be speaking about the relationship between God and personal individuals and how that relationship affects the relationship between people.

i’ll be speaking from deuteronomy 6.4 – 9 and luke 10.26-28

deuteronomy 6.4-9 reads like this from The Message translation:

4 Attention, Israel! God, our God! God the one and only! 5 Love God, your God, with your whole heart: love him with all that’s in you, love him with all you’ve got! 6-9 Write these commandments that I’ve given you today on your hearts. Get them inside of you and then get them inside your children. Talk about them wherever you are, sitting at home or walking in the street; talk about them from the time you get up in the morning to when you fall into bed at night. Tie them on your hands and foreheads as a reminder; inscribe them on the doorposts of your homes and on your city gates.

And Luke 10. 26-28 reads like this from The Message:

26He answered, “What’s written in God’s Law? How do you interpret it?”
27He said, “That you love the Lord your God with all your passion and prayer and muscle and
intelligence—and that you love your neighbor as well as you do yourself.”
28“Good answer!” said Jesus. “Do it and you’ll live.”

Two interesting points i want to bring out for food for thought today: first, we see in both of these passages that the relationship with God comes before the relationship with man. God makes a point to say “love the Lord your God with everything FIRST and then SECONDLY you can love your neighbor. And this brings me to a question i pose to you: can we truly Godly love people if we do not first and foremost, love God?

Secondly, in the first passage (Deut. 6.4-9), God calls attention to ALL ISRAEL. Not just one person, or one family or one church for that matter. But God calls out to a community of people. A community of people to truly care about and to walk alongside each other as they live. This includes the second passage as well (luke 10.26-28). In the NT, Christ wasn’t just talking to the Jews, who were the chosen people. Christ came for both the Jews and the Gentiles. That barrier between the two is now gone. Christ has demolished it and proclaims that you are to love every neighbor, not just the Jews. When jesus was being asked this question, their “neighborhood” wasn’t like it is today. They weren’t always 200 feet away  or just a skip across a dusty ol’ bridge and your at your buddies house. Some people lived multiple miles away from one another. So their definition of “neighbor” isn’t the same as ours. Jesus taught to love people regardless of how far they lived from you. This idea of “neighbor” was more a wake up call for them. This brings me to my second question: how often do we allow distance or unknowns about a person or persons to keep us from truly loving them the way Christ taught us in this passage?

i’m gonna leave you with a question b/c i’ve found for me, questions make me take a step back at my life and see exactly what i’m living for.

Are you loving people with the overflow that comes out of your love for God and your relationship with God?


Top ten!

Sunday, 11 October, 2009
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so i got this brilliant idea: i wanted to share with you my top ten list of toys as a child. i was born in 1985 and lived in a small town in kansas. I hope you enjoy this experience as much as I have had reliving these memories.  Here are my top ten toys:

10. Nerf football

spiral football_2

09. View Master

view-master

08. Pac-Man Arcade game

pacman

07. Lite Bright

lite

06. Legos

lego6261

05. Nintendo 64

765pxNintendo_64

04. G.I. Joes

gijoe

03. Masters of the Universe Castle

he_man_picture

02. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles

turtles

01. Transformers

optimus_prime


Tuesday, 1 September, 2009
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We gain

strength,

and courage,

and confidence

by each experience in which we really stop to look fear in the face …

we must do that which we think we cannot.


—   Roosevelt, Eleanor


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