creative canvas

Lighting

Friday, 30 April, 2010
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I am curious about using new or different lighting ideas for worship services. I am doing this in hopes of discovering some new ways to enhance the worship experience and time with our church. Try to eliminate the distractions that we have some kind of control over.

I need some new ideas and some creative ideas to lighten the stage and room. As of right now, we just use a simple rack attached to the ceiling with lights mostly focused on different stage spots. Most of the lights aren’t colored, but just emphasis the stage. We keep the house pretty normal, not dimming them very much at all.

anbody with any new ideas?


Monday Morning – Steven Furtick NYWC 20098

Monday, 23 November, 2009
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So this morning was the closing morning of NYWC in Atlanta, GA. Steven Furtick, from Elevation Church in Charlotte, spoke and challenged us to dream the impossible. Again, raw notes, but very very very good meat to chew on. To all you people who impact others, think about what he says. The one quote I would use to sum all this up is this:

“If the size of your dreams isn’t intimidating to you, it’s probably insulting to God” – Steven Furtick

Monday Morning – Steven Furtick

/  not wanting to drop the ball here.

/  god is bigger than anything we will ever face.

/  bigger than any deacon board, leader board, student

/   god in you is bigger than anything that is in you.

/   i want to increase the level of your naivety – i want you to know after you leave that you can do anything with God.

/   “nothing tweet-worthy” shaha he’s funny. 🙂

/   let’s surface the calling that God has been stirring up.

/   time can talk you out of your dreams.

/   i want to infuse some sanctified naive trust in jesus into our life so that whatever change he’s stirring you up to change, you’ll do it.

/   1 samuel 17 // the story of David and Goliath

/   god is capable to complete what he started in your ministry and his life.

/   mission statement: i want you to throw up in your mouth and swallow it back down!

/   if the size of your dream isn’t intimidating to you, then it’s probably insulting to God.

/   david was called to be a king and god had anointed him in front of all his brothers. at this point, david could’ve been practicing his king wave in themirror, but he wasn’t.

Four statements about this story:

/   “work what you’ve got”

/   background story: 1 sam. 17.17 ///  it started with david obeying a simple instruction from his father to deliver. Simple acts of obedience is the beginning of the great movements of god you want to see in your life. taking chesse and bread to battle lines put david in position to be boosted to where God wanted him to be.

/   your simplest most obedient act of obedience to God b/c when you are obedient in the little, he will bring faithfulness to you in big ways.

/   train that one little worship leader who knows how to tune his guitar. i want you to help him play songs that sound good in his vocal range. shut up and let the preacher preach. just sing your songs.

/   some of you are positioned to speak at a conference or raise up people who are gonna go places that you won’t go or say things to people that you can’t say: but david got up early in the morning and did what his father told him to do. this is a teenager boy. he GOT UP EARLY AND DID WHAT HIS FATHER TOLD HIM TO DO.

/   Moses – you who are called to leave Israel nation out of egypt slavery. what have yogurt in your hand? a stick god, i’ve got a stick. you want me to fight the chariots with my stick? “no throw it on the ground and i’ll turn it into something” it’s not about your lack of charisma or personality. be a man of god in someone’s life. walk in the power of God.

/   do you know that what you have is not enough??? when what you have is not enough, the sufficiency of christ becomes all you need!!!!! THIS IS HUGE!!!! WE NEED CHRIST!!!!

/   its not about your ability, its about god’s capability through you. your only limitation is your capacity to dream, receive and believe him.

/   “ignore the haters”

/   key component on david’s success in God v. 28 – 30

/   not talking about ignoring instruction of senior pastor – this is called a job opening

/   one of the things that god is calling some of you as volunteers is to simply show honor to someone you don’t totally agree with (senior pastor, youth pastor)  but you will serve unto the Lord not to men.

/   “your going back home and guess what? there will not be a vision welcoming committee waiting for you. you may not go home to welcome banners. but do not ignore the call of God in your life and ministry.

/   your destiny will never depend on anyone who leaves your life. your destiny depends on jesus and his promises. he has placed the people in your life that you need everything to do.

/   you’ve gotta turn away from the haters who oppose what god has called you to do.

/   shake it off.

/   jesus told peter “get behind me satan!” when anyone stands between you and God, you gotta turn away.

/   if you haven’t had a head on collission with the devil lately, it’s cause you might be going in the same direction.

/   there may be a time that god puts something on your heart that your brothers don’t want to hear. you may not always have people behind you

/   true faith in jesus and his vision enables you to speak what you’ve heard until you see it with your eyes.

/   faith comes by hearing, hearing by the word of god, and we walk by faith not by sight.

/   if what you see w/ your ryes does not align with you’ve heard in your heart, close your eyes and follow god. Do something great for god.

/   gotta learn how to have the gift of goodbye

/   christ was so intent on doing the will of his father that

/   remember god’s faithfulness

/   1 sam 17.33-37

/   audacity always has a certain measure of uncertainty. 80% sure that this is God’s will. DAvid is faced with level of opposition unlike he’s ever encountered. he begins rehearsing how god has been with him in the past in order to reinforce the future. the same god who was with him then is with him now.

/   Remember the faithfulness of God. Lamentations 3.21-32

/   Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow. quit borrowing tomorrow’s strength and begin trusting him with today’s strength. do you remember when he saved you???

/   do you remember when god put new desires in your heart when he saved you? can the same god who made his desires your desires in your heart, can that same god see you through what you’re going through when you go back to what you’re going through??

/   he was with me when i fought the lions, he was with me when i fought the bear!!

/   when god is for you, he is more than the whole world against you.

/   remember that he’s beggar than your little salary, bigger than the sexual immorality, remember his faithfulness b/c god’s past performance is the best prediction of this future ability!!


Sunday Evening – Reggie Joiner NYWC 2009

Sunday, 22 November, 2009
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Again, raw notes from Reggie Joiner’s talk on Sunday night. Very very very good. Please read this and go buy his book “Think Orange”.

Amazing thoughts!! Props to our Children’s Pastor, Julie Chestnut, she brought this book to our staff’s attention a few months ago and we need to move on it!!!!

Sunday Evening – Reggie Joiner

/   sometimes we forget why we are here.

/   we are all here b/c we all agree on one thing: and that is this: the only thing that will matter 100 years from now, is a relationship with God.

/   at the end of all of this, if students grow up and miss God, nothing else really  matters.

/   we have this thing in us: i wanna go as high as i can go, i want to be around people who will talk with me about this, i wanna learn, train about these things.

/   yet at one point, it just comes down to one thing: what are you gonna do with what you’ve learned? will this conference, this conversation pay off?

/   if you were to walk out the door of yourministry and turn around and come back

in with the power to change anything in your ministry, what would you

change?

/   people change when the pain associated with the status quo, becomes greater

than the pain associated with the change.

/   we tend to be the slowest to make changes or make the adjustments we need to make. we get comfortable.

/   first principle about change: if you wanna build something that lasts, you gotta be willing to change the things you build. I”m gonna create it with open hands but somebody behind me might need to tweak it or change it. when i hinge my identity on that, i don’t give up control

/   “sometimes i walk into church’s and feel like its 1983” church’s can so easily get caught up and not change

/   if you do not change what you build, you cannot hope it stands.

/   second principle: the best way to keep team moving towards mission, is to frequently upgrade your systems.

/ one of the most powerful things about change, is that change is an unbelievable platform to remind people about our mission/vision. change is a great opportunity to remind people of the mission or the vision.   the church’s that don’t change threaten the mission. if youdon’t work harder and harder that your rethinking everything you do, you’ll get stuck in a culture that needs to know who god is.

/   we’ve gotta ask hard questions, pull, pull, talk about questions that aren’t easy. the best way to remind them of the mission, is to talk about changes that need to happen in order to reach the mission

/   it was the mission tht drove them.

/   third principle: every change gives you an opportunity to distinguish between what is core and what is cultural.

/   great things about hang: you can qualify two diff. categories > core and cultural

/   you need to know what is a core and cultural. the core doesn’t change, those are the foundation sof the faith. the cultural needs to change as the students change. it is our job as leaders “this is core, this is core this is core, this is cultural and needs to be changed”

/   when you get everyone on the same page that is core, it doesn’t cost you relationally and it doesn’t cost you.

/   fourth principal: when youdont upgrade, you lose your capacity to support more relevant approach.

/   circle relevant: think about this word. this word has a lot of baggage in christian spheres. this is misused a lot. what i mean when i say relevant: connecting to the matter of hand. taking the truth and connecting it to the matter of hand.

/   kids are leaving church b/c they don’t see how it works with them the other 6 days of the week. they need to understand what it looks like to have an everyday relationship with Jesus.

/   we take programs from another church, and try to form fit it to ours. we need to upgrade the system to our own picture. <downloading c4 photoshop onto ancient mac>

/   “If you want CS4 PHotoshoph to work for you, you’re gonna have to upgrade your system”

/   theres a reason why you can’t take of your tie and have a contemporary service/ theres a reason you cant add a band to an organ

/   when we’re more worried about making the people happy who are already there rather than reaching the people who aren’t in the church, we need to upgrade.

/   you can’t uild something that lasts, unless you willing to change

/   if you wanna create a culture that is influential to the people now, you must upgrade

/   fifth principle: effective organization create a culture that are intentional about upgrading critical

systems

/   think in these 5 sysemts:

1. system in your church that connect leaders

/   how are you getting adults on the same team. how are you playing together as a staff. are you crossing over silo’s. are you learning how to lean into each other and get on the same page. sit around a table for 2 or 3 hours and discuss, learn, debate.

/   youdon’t have to work at getting misaligned. you have to work at getting aligned.

/   pastors must LEAN INTO EACH OTHER! if we don’t learn how to play together, the generation behind us may suffer the consequences

2. the system you use to communicate truth

/   how you say what you say may determine whether the things you say get heard.

/   we have a calling of truth and to wrestle with how to communicate it and how a generation behind us will hear it.

/   they will not hear it the same way we hear it. it must be changed!! it must be chagned!!!! they may not be moved the same we are moved. they may not receive it the same way we receive it.

/   we undersand this through foreign mission trips. but the truth is this: we forget how to be missionaries in our land

3. the system that relates to how we partner with parents

/   this is super super super important

/   tendency: buy myth that parents for teens don’t make a difference and they are disengaging. the best thing we can do is this: lean into teens and tell them that there relationship with parents are more important than they think right now. pursue a right relationship with parents.

/   we say to parents: don’t disengage with teens. as teens move towards dependence, the best thing you can do is re define your roll as a parent. learn how to be a parent as they mature.

/   the parent has about 3,000 unkempt hours and if you can leverage them and get them on the same page as you, you can exponentially multiply your influence.

/   as leaders of teens, don’t give up on the family. don’t quit on parents. reinvent how you work with parents. god designed parents to transfer faith to students. Parents need leaders who will lean into them and give them hope. Yes the family is broken, we don’t fix it. we show them how to re engage with the story of god’s redemption and faith. THIS IS HUGE!!!!!!!!

/   4. the system that connects leaders to kids and leaders to students

/   as a church staff the greatest gift we can give is to put another adult in the life of a teen that will say the exact thing a Christian parent would say.

/   in the middle of the strategy, there is a relational thread that we need to put consistently in their life.

/   the teens that have consistent leaders, have a more mobilized faith. as a parent, the greatest gift to give were leaders in his kids life.

/   teens are going to look for affirmation somewhere else and we have the opportunity to put it in their life. so please look and tweak your system. don’t economize on the relationship side of ministry for production.

5. the system that we use to mobilize people to serve

/   we hold the key to teen boy’girl to what it means to be stretched and mature in life of God. we hold the power to have them plug in and minister in their own lives.

/   plug them into ministry or put them classes each week?

/   when it comes to HS, besides teaching truth, they need an opportunity to experience what god wants to do with them. this is one of the biggest shifts: how many, how many, to this question: what percentage of students are plugging in and doing ministry while they are with us.

/   if you wanna radically change teens, you make sure you give them opportunity to serve and opportunity to do ministry.

/   if youdon’t lean into them to give opportunities, you may sabotage their spiritual growth. one of the biggest things we can to show them what the church is, we give them an opportunity for them to serve.

/   “well the church exists to meet my need” they leave church thinking something they go do rather what it means to be the church

/    most important thing to do is this: your significant and god has a plan for your life. now let me give you oemthing significant to do b/c you will never know if i don’t’.

/   we gotta back up and look at ministry in new light. what do we need to tweak? you can’t build something that lasts unless your willing to ask hard questions and change things.

/   what are the things you need to go back home and change?

/   what has god pressed on me to change?

/  you need to have hard discussions. cause you may have to change this for god’s word.

/   don’t just listen to champions and don’t change. take action!!!

/   if your 50 + of age, stand up:here what i knw abbot you: most of youdont plan on retiring and i’m gonna ask you this: don’t coast into retirement and not make waves. how you hand off your ministry is very critical. i’m gonna ask you, the next decade you spend the relational change in your pocket so people coming behind you won’t be sacrificial lambs. and they’ll have people rallying behind them

/   30 – 40 yr. olds stand up: some of you are in your sweet spot right now, going strong and fast and hard, you’re living it: i’m gonna ask you to lead. i mean LEAD. it’s messy and its hard but we need leaders now more than ever b/c church is at crossroads and we need change. lean into generation coming up behind you but lead.

/   20 – 30


Francis Chan – Friday evening NYWC 2009

Sunday, 22 November, 2009
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these are the notes from francis chan’s talk on friday night at NYWC 2009. they are a bit raw so check em out! Hopefully, thoughts coming later.

 

Friday Evening – Francis Chan

“Abiding in Christ”

john 15

/  v. 4 abide in me and i in you. as a branch cannot survive on its own with the vine, neither can you without me….apart from me you can do nothing!

/  do you really believe that everything is about you abiding in jesus? if thats not there, then you can do absolutely nothing.

/  what would a parent of a sr. high student want from their youth pastor?? what would you strive for your daughter to have??

/ real fruit lasts

/  everyone else thinks your awesome, but i know the truth that you aren’t actually alive. letter to the church of sartas in revelations

/  what would god say about you if I interviewed him about you????

/  john 6.63 “it is the spirit who gives life; the flesh is no help at all”

/  lives are becoming more scattered. all kinds of distractions.

/   can we slow down for a second and examine our time with him. what would christ say about our time with him? are you really in love with jesus? are you faking it?

/  2 peter 1 “if these qualities are yours and they’re actually increasing, this is ognna keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in your life and ministry with God”

/  when you keep Christ  your center, the above verse will come true

/  “Prone to wonder” God, i feel myself walking away. but the word of god brings us back to the truth and brings us back to the god we fell in love with.

/  supplement your faith with virtue

/  what is your biggest lie tonight?

/   my personal time with god sucks. i need help and i need to re-focus. my time with god needs to be better and more intentional.

/  being moderate in it all the desires and self control

/  help me get back to that reverence and being amazed in your presence? how you doing with your godliness?

/  do you love your students? do i love my students? Do I? Are you growing, creating a family in that youth group??

/  we try to work and plan everything out in ministry, but when you read the bible, movement was super-natural.

/  movements in church’s just don’t happen. all we can do is pray and ask god to see real fruit.

/  too often we work in the flesh and try to do it ourselves. when god’s the only one that can move us?

/  the big red tractor – don’t you feel like you’re just trying to push this thing? trying to get the most gifted speakers, musicians, etc. ? then we read acts. it didn’t seem like they had to do all these things and work so hard. Are we manipulating the spirit and the bible?

/  GOD, I CANNOT CREATE THE WAVE. I NEED YOU TO CREATE THIS WAVE CAUSE YOU’RE THE ONLY ONE WHO CAN.

/  we didn’t follow cleverly devised plans, for when he redivide honor and glory from the father and he spoke “this is my beloved son”, we were with him on the holy mountain. we have something more sure. the prophetic word that you will do well to pay attention. knowing this 1. no prophecy comes from someone’s own interpretation for no prophecy came from the mouth of man.

/  we have something more sure than an experience. we have his word and his truth in our hands. do we still believe that this is where the power is found. he is where the power is found.

/  steadfast – bearing up under pressure, under weight. the longer you hold it up, the stronger you’re gonna get. “make very effort to become this person who is continually getting stronger or (is steadiest). ”

/  eerytime hardships come, i’d ask god to take it away. why is this happening? why respond like that, i didn’t want my character to grow. i wanted things to be easy and things to be simple. when you become this person, you are unfruitful.

/  but if you go out and rely on God, then you will see fruit. cause you are experiencing the HS and riding the wave of the HS.

/  have you been on your knees with god? have you been frustrated? We count our trials as joy b/c they make us stronger.

/  do i need to spend an hour a day in prayer? YES I DO. NOTHING HAPPENS WITHOUT PRAYER.

/  talent doesn’t matter. if you weren’t willing to pray, you shouldn’t be on staff. I NEED TO PRAY.



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.


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?


How badly do you want it?

Saturday, 11 July, 2009
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” It”
– Craig Groeschel

So, I began a book series last month for “Crazy Love” by Franchis Chan. However, my intern needed my book for a study so I am without it. I have decided to continue this by reading “it” by Craig Groeschel, pastor of LifeChurch.tv in Edmond, Oklahoma.

I’m gonna post as I read this book. I want to know your thoughts and comments and to discuss with you what Craig says in this book. I must be honest, I was a bit skeptical about this book. For some reason, I anticipated that Craig was going to give us a formula for “it” or a pattern that a church must take. Fortunately, I’ve only read a few chapters but it is obvious that this is not his intent. Made my heart rejoice!

Chapter 1: where did IT come from?

-the good news: if you don’t have it, you can get it.
– the bad news: if you have it, you can lose it.

1. If a church lacks what most people think you need to have church, yet they have it, does this mean that buildings, environments, logos, websites, and so on are not important? Why or why not?
– In my opinion, they are important. But where church’s go wrong is this: when they begin to supercede it. When those things begin to drive the church or the vision, that’s when it needs to cease. It needs to drive those things. Not vice versa.

2. Can you think of an example of a church that had it and then lost it? Describe what happened. Why do you think that ministry lost it?
– I witnessed a church grow and really become a movement in the community. But at one point, it just became motions and the heart seemed to be missing in the middle of it all. I think they may have lost it because they got a little bit too busy with everything else. Keep the main thing, the main thing. Someday, I want to see it. I want to be apart of it. I’m praying and seeking it for Clay Center Covenant.
I’m very excited to see what role God has me playing.

3. If you’ve ever been part of a ministry that had it, you knew it. Describe what it felt like. What were some of the qualities that you experienced and appreciated?
– I don’t know that I’ve ever been part of a ministry that had it. I mean, if you think you have it, do you really have it? Does it ever have a stopping point or a point where you’ve figured it all out? I say no. When you think  you have it, you’ve lost it.

4. What part of your ministry has it? (Your choir, your student ministry, or hospitality ministry might have it.) What factors do you believe contribute to it?
– I don’t know. I need to think about this question more.

Okay so this is what I’m doing. I’m taking the discussion questions at the end of each chapter and just kinda sharing my thoughts. I am praying for God to open my eyes and show me what he has for his Kingdom’s work. I am excited to be a part of it.



Parents and Students in the Church

Wednesday, 1 July, 2009
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These series of questions were posted on facebook today. Would like to get your feedback on them.

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I’d like some feedback regarding an issue that youth ministry has dealt with for some time. here are just a few questions and I’d like to hear your comments, start a dialogue regarding this and see where it leads:

#1 How do you effectively and efficiently engage/promote/encourage/mature the relationship of parents and teenagers?

#2 What is the impact of the relationship between teens and their parents have on their involvement in the church?

#3 What in your life was the most influential thing your parents did for you as a high school student, regardless of where you were in your faith or involvement in the church?

#4 What is the biggest thing a church can do to help you with your relationship with your teenager?

Thanks!!


Be Crazy Love

Wednesday, 3 June, 2009
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Crazy Love

<So I’ve decided I’m going to start reading “Crazy Love” by Franchis Chan and write my thoughts, ponderings, questions, etc. regarding each chapter and use this as the notebook. I’d love to pose some good questions, insights or whatever regarding this topic of crazy love for God, crazy love for people, etc. I would love for you to grab a copy of the book, read a chapter a week with me, and have some great conversations about this. You can go to crazylovebook.com and get your own copy! Here’s the plan: by saturday night, I am going to have posted the first chapter of crazy love. I’d love to hear your thoughts on it as well.


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