Thursday, February 25, 2010

Self Analysis

I am a question-asker. Questions of other people's perceptions, directions of ministry, effectiveness of what we are doing, or my own relationship with Christ will all fit the bill. I was looking back through some old files tonight and came across these questions to ask of yourself:

1.   Are you serious about living this life?

2.   Are you stepping out of your comfort zone?

3.   What are you doing right now that is forcing a deeper reliance on God?

Challenging questions, but worth asking if you want to grow in Christ.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

The Week That Was

Well here we are a week later and God is continuing to do His great work in this race. Sometimes we run alongside at a good clip and other times it is a laboring run where we push through because we realize the ultimate goal.  He never told us that it would be easy, but He has promised us that it would be worth it.  The victories are still coming and yet there are greater things still to be done!

  • The Arizona mission team is thumping along-we are nearing the end of our fundraising
  • We are blessed by the generosity of so many people at Northridge & those elsewhere as well
  • This Saturday marks one month until we leave for AZ
  • The Well & Awakening are booming as we hit two months in-almost 80 total people over two nights!
  • We continue to see decisions as youth & adults are baptized into Christ-it never gets old
  • Great message from Mike this weekend on End Times-powerful & moving!
  • The youth ministry here is blessed with incredible youth partners-wouldn't do ministry without them!
  • I enjoyed our parent meeting on Saturday morning-it an intense time of seeking a godly way to raise our youth
  • Had a camp planning meeting last week for Woodland-very excited about a new adventure for camp this year
  • Also a bit sad as it will be my first time not doing camp with my good friend John Porterfield in 6 years
  • In the middle of all this work I am blessed to be married to the love of my life and have three unique, creative & beautiful daughters

Thursday, February 18, 2010


Alright-I'll admit I still can't find a blogging rhythm & that posting song lyrics is a cheat, but this song has been rolling through my head and I want to share it.  I'll put a video at the bottom as well.  Truly anointed lyrics and good for all to reflect on.

Seated above, enthroned in the Father's love
Destined to die, poured out for all mankind
God's only son perfect and spotless one
He never sinned, but suffered as if he did

All authority, every victory is Yours
All authority, every victory is Yours

Savior, worthy of honor and glory,
worthy of all our praise, You overcame
Jesus, awesome in power forever,
awesome and great is Your name,You overcame

Power in hand speaking the Father's plan
You're sending us out, light in this broken land

We will overcome by the blood of the Lamb
and the word of our testimony, everyone overcome  

Monday, February 8, 2010

What a Weekend!

The title sums it up appropriately-it was truly an incredible (and quick) weekend:

  • Left Milledgeville on Friday to drive to DeFuniak Springs, FL for a spiritual retreat with FSU and their Christian Campus Fellowship
  • Spoke 4 times in 36 hours on the Holy Spirit & God brought it!
  • Worship led by Dan Cole & Kelsie & Nathaniel was incredibly passionate
  • The sound of 90 college students singing their hearts out in a small room blew me away all weekend
  • Change of place + change of pace = change of perspective
  • The ministry that Michael Mears is leading at FSU is beautiful to see in action-the compassion that he has for these college students is admirable and it was a true pleasure to be a small part of it all
  • I am continuing to pray for Garrett-a young man that didn't anticipate coming to this retreat-in fact, doesn't go to FSU-but was there with a friend.  God is working on his heart!
  • Northridge had 765 in attendance yesterday! Wow-just simply wow.
  • 765 people brings lots of logistical issues-praying that we can work through these so that more people can hear what God has to offer
  • The Arizona team ran a perfect BBQ while I was in Florida and Northridge blessed us by helping to raise $2400 for our trip in one morning!
  • Last night at The Well was simple & yet powerful. I am so grateful to be surrounded by incredible servants & youth that want God's truth.  We are still figuring it out and maturing, but the future with God's Spirit is so bright!
  • Thanks to God for having me here in this season to be part of what He is doing!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

The Struggle

"The struggle to the top alone can make the heart swell."
Albert Camus

This quote rolls through my head quite a bit.  It is often misread-Camus' intent is not to talk about struggling alone, but that sometimes the difficult journey holds more rewards than actually arriving at your destination. I have to believe that it is true-I am holding fast to that thought now. 

It is difficult to create a new culture in a church & in an area that has been around for so long.  There is so much teaching to be done, so much patience to be had, leaders to develop, foundations to build, and prayers to be prayed.  I'm not afraid of hard work-I actually relish it-but it can be frustrating as you continue to push along and not see the results you are hoping for or expecting.

Some days it frustrates me more than others.  I have this great desire to see ministry blossoming and people living out their faith on a consistent basis.  I invested 6 1/2 years in Florida and God did great things in spite of me there.  I don't want to recreate a Florida environment in Georgia, but my aim is to see young people (and us older folks) passionately following Jesus and desiring to do His great work.  It is going to take some time and the lessons that He is going to teach me (and His church) through the journey will mold and mature us into the church He designed us to be. 

I pray that I would not grow weary as we do His great work.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Mind Dump

I have to admit that I have not approached the regularity that I once had on the blogosphere since moving to Georgia.  I don't know if it is the new interface or just the hecticity (yep-that's the word I used) of life & ministry here, but I haven't kept up with it as much as I desire to do.  I am stealing the phrase "Mind Dump" from Michael Mears because that just seems to be the best way to get at this today.  So with my apologies to my brother at FSU, here goes:

  • There were 752 people in worship at Northridge this past weekend-an increase of almost 500 since October 2008
  • There is no explanation for growth like that except God.  Plain & simple.
  • I am speaking at FSU's CCF "Family Vacation" this coming weekend-sharing on the Holy Spirit four times in three days
  • I'm looking forward to this weekend, but also a little anxious.  It's a big responsiblity to share God's Word & I don't take it lightly.  I don't want to mess anything up or get in the Holy Spirit's way.
  • The time frame for our mission trip to Arizona is dwindling-this is all new here & we still have a lot of money to raise.  It's going to be a God thing when it all comes together.
  • Reculturing youth ministry is one of the most difficult things I have done.  We did it in Florida (by we I mean God), but I had zero clue back then.  Now I have a clue and I realize how hard it truly is.
  • The rewards of youth ministry will come later-I know this.  God will reward our faithfulness through the struggles-just perhaps not in this life.
  • Trying to balance working with youth and also working as an associate pastor is a very interesting act.  I have to remind myself daily that it has to be a God thing-I'm not that good.
  • Spending time with our Florida friends as they visit us is always good for my soul.  I have spent a lot of time "in the trenches" with these folks and our hearts will be connected no matter the distance.
  • Praying through the process of getting rid of our house in Florida-in foreclosure now, but hoping that our application for deed-in-lieu goes through.  Trusting that God will handle this last detail from the move northward too.
  • I am a lucky man.  Married to my best friend and blessed with three incredible daughters.  Certainly more than I deserve & I pray as often as I can that I don't mess up the chance to be a godly father & husband.
  • I have to work harder at establishing "margin" in my life.  The pace that we have been running at (and the one in front of us) is crazy.  I can't allow the schedule to dictate everything.  Got to set apart time for me & God and me & my family.
  • To be loved by God in the middle of all of my faults, insecurities, weaknesses & sins is mind-blowing.  I don't think I'll ever fully understand it, but I pray that I will live as if I am grateful for it.