Archive for January, 2008

Journaling at Starbucks

I am so encouraged by the people that came out this morning to join me at journaling!  As we shared our vision for Grace Capital Church this past weekend one of the areas that we touched on was:

“If every person (young or old) would spend time journaling once a day, we would become more like Jesus and learn to hear His voice.”

I had three people with me at Starbucks this morning at 6:30am and get this, one from Henniker, one from Bristol, and one from Barnstead!  I’m done hearing excuses from people who live 10 minutes from Starbucks.  Each of these people drove over 30 minutes to share in reading God’s Word together.  Jimmy, Tom, & Tina – it was a pleasure to start my day with you today!  I pray that you were as blessed by our time together as I was.  Here’s to many more early Tuesday mornings together!

2008 GCC Vision – ONE

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I’ll post the video tomorrow. It’s being converted and uploaded overnight. Here’s the gist of the 2008 vision for GCC. I pray that you are encouraged and also challenged by the list below!

  • If every person reached one other for Christ this year- we’d celebrate that 900 people came to know Jesus.
  • If every person (young or old) would spend time journaling once a day, we would become more like Jesus and learn to hear His voice.
  • If every one of our cell groups multiplies once, we’d have 70 cell groups.
  • If every one of our Sunday Celebrations was filled with amazing love and grace, we’d see healings and changed lives.
  • If every person served in one ministry- many would be refreshed because they wouldn’t have to do more, and many would be blessed by serving, and all the needs would be met.
  • If every family gave one tenth of their income to God, there would be no lack- only abundance to give more away. (personally and as a church)
  • If every one cared, we would make a bigger difference to the community around us.
  • If everybody joined to pray one time a week, we would see true revival.
  • If every married couple would commit build up their spouse and children once a day, we’d see more healthy marriages and families.

     

    May we see each of these things come to pass.  May we each step into the full calling that God has for us and may we all pray for a complete understanding of what it means to be part of ONE Faith, ONE Lord, and ONE Body!

    Junky Car Club

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    I’ve joined a mew car club.  I found this club online and I love what they stand for.  Here’s the general point of this car club –  “live with less and give more.”

    So many buy into the idea that we are what we drive.  This leads to an oppressive debt that keeps us from being more free with our finances.  It has been 2 months now that I have been the outright owner of my car.  I actually have the title to my car in my possession!  There is freedom in not owing a bank for what I drive.  Kim’s car was paid off just 2 weeks ago and the title to her car is in the mail on it’s way to us as I write this post.

    Here’s a bit about the Junky Car Club:

    Junky Car Club members are learning to live with less so we can give more. We’re a bunch of happy drivers who are politely rebelling against consumerism by driving junky cars. We encourage our members to use their dough to support social justice causes instead of making fat car payments. We believe in environmental stewardship and hanging onto things a little longer. Junky Car Club members sponsor kids living in poverty through Compassion International.

    This club challenges me to be happy with the car that I drive.  Sure it’s a 99 Dodge Intrepid with 110,000 miles on it.  Sure it’s missing a bit of paint on the rear bumper and passenger side door.  Sure it’s got some damage to the front bumper after Kim drove it onto a stone wall last winter.  The bottom line is that it is my car and I owe nothing on it.  The fact that I don’t have to make a monthly car payment frees me up to give more generously to many organizations that do great work.

    For more information about the Junky Car Club and how to join this movement click here. 

    Makes Me Laugh

    This video has no purpose being on my blog other than the sheer fact that it makes me laugh.

    Enjoy!

    Headed to L.A.

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    I got an email earlier this week from the Foursquare National Church Communications Department.  They are filming a new video that will address all of the new child and youth safety policies and they want me to come out to L.A. to film one of the segments.

    So…  I’ll be packing my bags next week to head out to a much warmer climate for a couple days.  While I am out there I am going to try and connect with a few friends that I have in the Missions and Next Gen Offices.  I’m excited about this opportunity because I am passionate about creating safe places for children and youth.  I believe this video will serve as a catalyst for many churches to upgrade how they keep this next generation safe.

    God has a purpose and a plan for everyone at every age and if we can continue to provide safe, effective, spiritually-alive places of ministry that help preserve the call of God in the lives of children and teenagers and help them meet Jesus Christ, experience the fullness of His Spirit, and grow in the power of God’s Word as they become healthy adult disciples – who don’t need to recover from issues of abuse – they will touch their world for the glory of God!

    1 Day Left…

    Our annual membership meeting is this Saturday.  I can barely contain my excitement for this years vision for GCC.  I am praying that this vision is met with such excitement by all of our members that they will all run with it and see it through to the end.  While we will be sharing the vision with everyone on Sunday at our morning services I can’t wait to see how our members react to hearing this vision.

    As we strive to impact central NH with the Father’s love and connect people in relationship with Jesus Christ and one another I believe this vision will help us make a HUGE Impact this year!

    If you’re a member of GCC, be there!

    The Baby Borrowers

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    Something on my radar for February TV viewing.  NBC is starting a new reality series that puts teenagers in homes with babies & toddlers.  This should be a great social experiment that will open up many young eyes to the full weight of having kids when you are not ready for them.  It will also load me up with tons of examples to be harvested for upcoming messages at Impact.

    You can check out the trailer for the show here.
    I love the tag line for the show.  “it’s not tv, it’s birth control.”

    Sweet!

    If you have a teenager make plans to watch this series with them and then talk about the struggles that you had with raising them.  I can see how there will be some great real-life conversations on this topic coming up.

    Time – how can you give it away?

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    I think that it’s safe to say that most people have heard the statement, “People won’t care how much you know until they know how much you care.”  I had an opportunity to spend the afternoon with a teenager who needed a little extra time.  This guy sees me twice a week usually – Sunday and Wednesday.  While he hears me speak every week and sees me live my life in front of him our relationship needed more time together on an individual level.

    I have to say, it was very refreshing today to hang out with him.  I got to eat an amazing roast beef sandwich complete with horseradish sauce with him as we talked about some real deep stuff that he has been dealing with.  I’m encouraged by our time together today.  Not only did I spend time sitting and talking with him but we also worked together.  There has been a lot of little things around the building that have needed some attention.  I spent the afternoon working with him and we were able to get a bunch of stuff done.  Not only did we get a significant amount of tasks done, I got to share my life with a teen that needed to see what real life for me is like.

    I get questioned all the time, “what can a pastor possibly do all day, every day?”  I sometimes get the feeling that people think I sit around the office reading the Bible, praying and waiting for the phone to ring.  Now, that does go on – and I love the fact that I have a career that allows me to read the Bible and pray!  But there is so much more that happens every day as a pastor.  Today I got to share that with a great teen.  It reinforced in me the belief that we all should be looking for simple, real life ways to connect with the next generation of leaders around us.

    How can you invest some of your time each week to encourage, train, disciple someone younger (or older!) than you?  I’d love to hear your thoughts…

    New Family Tradition

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    If you can believe this, we have a new family tradition that has been inspired by our dog.  It seems as though anytime we walk through the door our dog meets us as if we have been gone for months.  Monday I made this observation out loud as Kim came back from dropping off Megan at school.  I then elaborated by imagining.  “Imagine if we all greeted each other the way Gracie did when we walked in the door?”  We tried it out when the bus dropped her off after school.  She thought we were a little weird but I know she enjoyed all the attention too.

    Well, now whenever anyone comes home we are greeted with exuberant joy and lots of hugs and kisses (Makenna has even taken to licking my face like our dog – maybe a bit too much…)  I will say, I look forward to coming home every night now.  I’m not sure if this will stick around forever but while it lasts, I love it!

    Give Yourself Away

    What does it really look like to give yourself away?

    There are many pictures that come to mind with the phrase “Give yourself away.”

    • Weddings – both in the spiritual sense of 2 becoming 1  as well as the physical aspect of giving yourself wholly to someone
    • Serving people selflessly
    • Having a religious conversion

    Each of these images that come to mind are centralized in the concept of love.  Everything that we do when we are giving of ourselves should be rooted in love. If that is not the driving force behind serving others and placing their needs above ours then we are trying to get something out of serving.

    I understand that we can get things out of serving others.  We feel good about ourselves or we may be thanked by someone and therefore feel a sense of gratitude from whomever we served.   But to have that as the motivational force behind serving someone I think is awry from why we should be serving others and twists what can be accomplished through serving.

    This year I am looking for more and more ways to “give myself away” to others.  That starts at home.  I want to be more free and giving of my time at home.  I want my wife and kids to know that they always come first and that they always have me.  I struggle with this all the time because I am a naturally helpful person.  Many times in the past this has been detrimental to relationships that I have had.  I want my family to know that they are priority number one (besides God).

    Pray for me that I will be able to do this with better success – and I’ll do the same for you all…