Archive for February, 2006

A story worth sharing…

Monday, February 27th, 2006

Misunderstanding Relationships

Friday, February 24th, 2006

I just got back from lunch where I had to run a few errands. On my way, I came across a wreck. I glanced over (we all do) and noticed that it was one of our High School students. She was very OK (everyone who was in the accident was fine) but was very visibly upset. I gave her a hug and made sure she was OK. She was crying and very worried about having to tell her parents that she had gotten in a wreck. “I’ve never been in a wreck. There going to be so mad at me,” was the basic fear that she was sharing… I couldn’t help but think, “teenagers don’t get it sometimes.” When she finally reached her mom on the phone she very apologetically explained what had happened to her mom, and I said to her in the background, “tell your mom you are OK.”

As a teenager, I didn’t understand that the most important thing for a parent to know is that their kids are OK. I can remember thinking, “all they want to know is if I did something wrong,” but now that I am a parent, I understand things much differently. I know now that the first question that pops into a parent’s mind is something like this…

Are you OK? Are you safe? How fast can I get there to be with you?

When mom showed up, she hugged her daughter. She hugged her and she asked her, “are you OK?” That’s the heart of a parent. That the heart that I hope we encourage teenagers to see.

In case any of our students are reading this… Your parents love you. Your parents stay up at night worrying about you. Your parents are praying for you and your future… because a child is a precious gift of God…

What’s your dream?

Tuesday, February 21st, 2006

During some sermon prep. this morning, I was looking through some old messages and found something I thought might be worth sharing…

Do you dream of church being…

A place where you can be yourself because you are surrounded by people who honestly care about you…

A place that keeps your secrets, but doesn’t allow your secrets to control your life…

A place that cares more about you being healthy than being happy…

A place that truly listens when you talk, encourages you when you are tired, and genuinely celebrates your success…

A place that won’t allow you to be fake because they believe there is great beauty in who you really are…

A place that shares your dreams instead of asking questions like, is that practical?

A place where your deep hurts can be shared and healing can be experienced…

A place where you can be you…

A place where your mistakes are forgiven and your faults don’t disqualify you from being a part of something extraordinary…

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I can’t wait…

Tuesday, February 21st, 2006

Mine’s on the way… Mid-March? Please sooner…

Another picture set.

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Bloggers block

Tuesday, February 21st, 2006

As some of you already know, I have been diagnosed with a “you’re going to die at 40” high cholesterol problem. I actually found that out several years ago, but just last week I got around to seeing the doctor about treatment. My new doctor in Mansfield is one of those doctors who is in and out of your room so fast you’re not really sure if he actually even stopped by kind of doctors, but last week he spent thirty minutes with me. I think his goal was to scare the heck out of me. In short, it worked.

One of my “prescriptions” is to walk for 30 minutes five mornings a week which I am actually looking forward to. I know it sounds strange, but it gets my day going (unfortunately, really early since I have to be back home by 6:50 when Steph goes to work) and it is a gives me a great time to dedicate to pray. Since coming to Mansfield, I have really struggled with my consistency in my prayer life. I hope this new schedule allows me to be more faithful. So I appreciate your prayers as I continue to try to stay alive and be more faithful in my prayer life.

In other news, I am setting up a blog for my pastor. I am so excited about this not only because I get the chance to see the birth of another blog nerd, but I really think it will be great for our church as well as potential visitors to get the chance to hear some more of his wisdom and thoughts.

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I love this…

Saturday, February 18th, 2006

I am working on our summer camp curriculum tonight, and this section continues to give me goosebumps…

As followers of Christ, we share in the divine conspiracy of God to bring love, peace and healing to a broken and fallen world. We are foolish enough to believe that hope is real, love wins, and peace is available to the most disturbed of souls. And we will continue in our foolishness, believing that the Kingdom of God is more than a distant hope, but also a present reality. The Jesus community represents an active force that has conspired with Christ to share the story of God with the world. We believe that the fundamental purpose of the Jesus community is to love God and God’s world.

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The prayers of a busy youth worker

Sunday, February 12th, 2006

I had an incredible weekend with our High School students this weekend. Our winter retreat was set up as a “do nothing” weekend. Our staff had no agenda. We had no programming ideas… No group building exercises… We just went to hang out and it was so refreshing. But at the same time it has made me feel uneasy. I have genuinely missed opportunities like this weekend. I definitely took for granted the ample time I was able to spend with my students in Cleburne. I saw a handful of them almost everyday. They stopped by the office. I saw them on campus. I visited them in their homes. It was just easier… and I just have to confess that I really miss that. I miss that connection. That’s what made this weekend so special for me personally.

One of our students this weekend shared with me a book of poems that she has been working on. They were really fantastic, and inspired me to do some writing tonight. I will admit that I am too embarrassed to put it here on the main page, but if you really want to check it out, you can read the rest of this post.

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Super Bowl Halftime

Tuesday, February 7th, 2006

Click here to see the greatest Super Bowl halftime show. In case you are wondering, it isn’t the Rolling Stones.

Warning: It’s a large file.

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Bye, Bye Birdie

Saturday, February 4th, 2006

6303962661.01.LZZZZZZZSteph and I just got home from seeing Mansfield High School’s production of “Bye, Bye Birdie.” All I have to say is that it was really incredible. I was so impressed with everything; the orchestra sounded great, the acting was wonderful, the singing was really phenomenal.

It was a great night out, and I am so proud to see what so many of our students have poured their heart and soul into over the past 3 months.

All of you did an outstanding job, and I sure appreciated the invitation to come and see the musical.

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Discipline Questions v1.6

Thursday, February 2nd, 2006

Describe the nature and mission of the Church. What are its primary tasks today?

The mission of the church is to make disciples of Jesus Christ. This process can be understood as a circular process of inviting individuals to a commitment to live according to the Lordship of Jesus, encouraging the spiritual and emotional development of the new believer, equipping them to live this new kind of life outlined by the teachings of Jesus, and continually sending the church into the world to invite others to discover Jesus. The church is unashamedly about Jesus; the life that he lived while here on earth, the sacrifice of the cross, the hope of resurrection, and his invitation for us to continue to embody the story of God.

When an individual makes a commitment to Jesus, they make a commitment to a community of believers as well. As a member they vow to uphold that community with their prayers, their presence, their service and their giving. In this vow, we recognize our belief that each member has a part to play in the life of the community. Their presence in worship, service in and beyond the church community, prayerful support of one another, and shared resources contributes to the overall goals of the church; to make disciples. As members participate in this covenant within the life of the local society, each individual is encouraged to seek out the appropriate expression of the teachings of Jesus in the world. Every member has a mission, and as they grow in their sense of God’s call to make disciples and support his Kingdom, the specific expression of that mission should become more clear.

?I believe that pastors must continually strive to foster an environment where members are challenged to discover their gifts so that they can find an appropriate expression of their own passions. For some, this will lead them to ministries relating to social justice. For some, this will lead them into ministries that have a strong commitment to youth or children. For some, this will lead them into the role of teachers, pastors, or care-givers for the community. However, the goal does not change. We seek to make disciples who find a place to serve in the ministry and mission of the church. All ministries of the church are an expression of the love of God for the world. The universal church shares that vision, but each individuals role in that foundational goal is unique and vital to the Kingdom of God.

We are called to love one another. We are called to make disciples. We are called to pray for “thy Kingdom to come.” Everything we do in our communities should flow from these three primary tasks.

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