Tuesday, January 24, 2006

wow, that's old!

I was changing a bulletin board here at church today with my intern Marko when I discovered this underneath the current board paper:

Is it me, or is 2001 a little old!? Just goes to show you, things change slowly in traditional church culture ;)

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

what's up?

well, I'm back from my weekend of craziness. I had an awesome time this weekend at my friend Chad's wedding in Ohio. Friday, we went to a waterpark/resort in Sandusky Ohio (it was indoor for all of you wondering). I got to ride this really cool wave/surf machine, you know- like those ones you see on cruise ships? Very cool stuff. I also nearly was obliterated when 3 heavy guys and I rode the raft-in-a-tube ride. It almost flipped over. Seriously, I think I saw my life flash before my eyes ;)

As soon as I flew back from Ohio, I headed to Poplar Point Camp to catch the 2nd half of our District retreat. I must say, it was great. I only wish I could have been there for the whole thing.

The next couple of weeks should be interesting to say the least. In two weeks, we will be starting a new series on prayer. I'm very psyched about that. The coolest part is that we will have a contemplative prayer chapel set up every week for our teens to experience before our Wednesday night meeting.


Tuesday, January 10, 2006

a life update

I have a hard time writing profound things every day here on this blog. It always seems easier to just talk about my life and the things going on (it sure is busy enough!). For deep spiritual insights your going to have to hear me on Wednesday nights or the few times I preach throughout the year. Speaking of which, if you are in Ohio April 2nd, I'll be preaching Sunday morning at Chapel Hill Church if you are interested in coming and making faces at me.

This weekend will certainly be interesting. Thursday late afternoon, I am flying to Ohio in order to be in my friend Chad's wedding. It's interesting because I also have a district retreat this weekend. I will be flying back Sunday afternoon and going straight to our camp to catch the last half of the retreat- crazy.

This new year will pose some interesting and difficult challenges for our church. I really feel that God is trying to give us a not-so-gentle nudge towards outreach and growth. I am prayerfully anticipating the wonderful things that God is going to do through the faith and dependence (on God) that these challenges will create.

If you haven't yet seen it, our youth room is in the process of being transformed. We spent a few days last week paining the room and preparing to turn it into a cafe-like atmosphere. Here's a pic for those of you in other states.

Not a whole lot right now, but here's a quick peek at the paint-job.

In the coming months, we will add a cafe counter, track lighting tables and chairs, and a new sound system (all God willing, donations needed!). The chairs in the picture are from a cafe table that we had donated, but the table is awaiting a middle (we got the base and the top, but something's missing!).

For more pictures of our ministry, teens, and events you can check out the pictures page of our website.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

a fresh start

Have you ever heard of “do-overs?” Any self-respecting child that has ever played games with other children (or adults) knows exactly what I’m talking about. The do-over is the savior of many ill-fated children all over the world, an “easy button” if you will. When things don’t go the way we like, it is always easier to try again...to get another chance.

I was pondering recently the tradition of New Year’s resolutions. Generally, most Americans tend to be a bit pessimistic (ok, a lot pessimistic). New Year’s seems to be the only time of the year that most Americans are optimistic. Suddenly with the advent of a new year, it is like we get a huge do-over- a chance to redeem our failures and set goals for the next twelve months. Thinking about all of this reminds me of a song by Five Iron Frenzy called “New Years Eve.” Here are a few lines from it:
“It's New Years Eve and I'm full of empty promises,
I half pretend to keep this time, just like last year...
And then with thunderous praise and lofty adoration,
a second passes by, yet nothing changes...
A year goes by and I'm staring at my watch again,
and I dig deep this time, for something greater than I've ever been,
life to ancient wineskins. And I was blind but now I see.”
In 2006, let us not just make idle resolutions- let’s set real goals we can accomplish. Goals that have eternal results. Goals like pleasing God with our lives, loving others, being more generous, laughing more, or enjoying God’s creation. Instead of cry out for a “do-over” let us do something fresh and new. Let’s let go of the past that we often keep in a death-grip and embrace the present keeping an eye out for the future. Happy New Year!