Wednesday, September 12, 2012
Thursday, August 2, 2012
Thursday, July 12, 2012
|Sporting our Cardinal All-Stars!|
Tuesday, July 3, 2012
|Mars Hill in Grandville|
How to keep moving with God throughout the summer.
|Mars Hill in Grandville|
Friday, June 22, 2012
Saturday, June 2, 2012
Friday, May 25, 2012
Wednesday, May 23, 2012
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. Isaiah 40:31
Wednesday, March 28, 2012
I love my family so much. Yesterday we were able to take our kids to their first concert that was not held in a church basement. We went to Huntington University and saw The Brilliance and Gungor. I have learned over my concert going days, which seem so long ago, the best part about a concert is who you are with. I always seem to remember who I was with, very important in getting a ride home, more than set lists or blazing guitar solo.
This was a special moment for me in my life. Not only watching very good musicians and song writers perform their art, but the fact that their art was sharing the love of Christ. I know that I will talk my kids someday to see bands that do not love Jesus, but on this night I did. I know we paid to see Gungor but my favorite part of the night was listening to The Brilliance. Two songs that touched my heart, were Now and at the Hour of Our Death, and Does Your Heart Break? “When the heart breaks does your heart break,” was my favorite line sung during the concert. I love hearing artist sing their prayers. David Gungor ended his set by praying for us to let our actions be the love of Christ.
Beautiful night of music with my beautiful family.
Friday, March 23, 2012
Over the last few years, my TV intake has gone down. This is not because I had a revelation that TV takes up way to much of my time and I would be better served reading a book, but it is because LOST was my wife and I favorite show. Since LOST went off the air, we have been lost as to what show to watch.
Now, thanks to Netflix, we are hooked on Mad Men. We worked hard this winter to catch up and be ready for the new season that begins March 25, with a two-hour premier.
Mad Men is a fun show to watch that has interesting characters that are broken people but in need of success to make them feel for a time fixed. The main character Donald Draper is a man who wants to be good and happy, but keeps coming up short in make the right decisions for this to happen. The other characters in a way follow suite.
I am excited for a new season and to actually be able to care what is on my TV for the first time in a long time. I hope the characters develop in away that makes it worth watching and of course, if I were a writer for the show I would help solve all the problems by having them come to Jesus! I know I am a pastor, but its true.
Thursday, March 15, 2012
Monday, March 5, 2012
I remember thinking when I was a student that at some point things would calm down in the midst of homework and studying for finals. Boy was I wrong. Life just seems to get busier as the days pass. It is not a terrible thing--it's nice to have things to do. The problem is when we live for the chaos instead of being on the rock.
The Church needs to find its rock on Jesus and do everything that Christ has called us too.
When the church is a movement in the midst of a chaotic world, it's set on the rock of Jesus.
I am not sure that I always loved to worship God. I used to tolerate going to church and sitting through songs written 500 years ago. Then I went off to college and shook my head in disgust during chapel, while guitar players jumped off their amps in the middle of worship. I felt like it was a show on all fronts, traditional and modern. I did not grasp the ultimate joy that happens when we soften our hearts and find that complete joy is simply praising our God.
Last week I went to The Steps, a local ministry for children and youth. During this time they had a worship service, and I loved it. I did not know all of the songs, the songs played were not great, and many of the kids were just taking it in and not singing; but, through all of this I still felt the presence of God. It was incredible! I think it is because my understanding of worship has changed. Worship is a time where we come before our God and let him know we are with him. Worship is us, as followers of Christ, declaring before God that our hearts are focused on him and his Kingdom, and nothing else. It doesn’t matter whether a “b” string on a guitar is badly out of tune or if a song was written by a church music dinosaur. What matters is that our hearts are focused on God and lifting him up in praise! Man, I love to worship God any time, now--no matter the style. I seek ways in which I can worship and I can never get enough.
When a Church moves, it worships God!
Glorify the Lord with me; let us exalt his name together. -Psalm 34:3
The greatest celebration of the year is Easter! I love it! Easter is the reminder that our Savior lives in our world today. Therefore, we need to be in a season of preparation.
Over these weeks heading to Easter, there is much to pray for and much to fast for. Our country holds a lot of pain and suffering right now. We all know people who are without work, dealing with broken relationships, or one of the many other pains of the world. We are living in a time where people are in need of healing, peace, comfort, purpose, and love. We are living in a time where people need a Savior. This is why we have to embrace praying and fasting. I hope during this season you are lifting up those in your life and those you do not know who need Jesus. Spend a day just praying for that one individual or fast during one meal and just pray for them to come and experience the embrace of Jesus. Do not let this season of preparing go by without focusing on those who need Jesus.
Easter is the greatest celebration of the year! Let this year matter because you helped someone come to Christ for the first time! Do not be afraid, but be bold in your praying, fasting, and inviting! Let this be the year you help someone to be redeemed and restored into something beautiful by the work of our loving God.
Let Easter be the celebration of new life!
When I was a teenager I liked to get into arguments. I remember one time where I got into a shoving match over who was a better baseball team, the St. Louis Cardinals or the Chicago Cubs. (easily the Cardinals.) I just had this nature that made me want to disagree with someone, just so I could hear my own voice.
In the last few months I have noticed well-known pastors being critical of other well-known pastors. This pains my heart. They are not being critical because of heresy or poor ethical choices, but critical of what God is calling them to do. This just hurts the Church and does not grow the Kingdom.
I am sure when we look at church history, arguing never brought on a great movement. I do believe we need to stand up for our faith and be bold in the face of adversity, but to flat out seek an argument about where God is leading a person is wrong.
Arguing is a church movement killer. I wish that pastors or church goers would stop wasting energy and time complaining and arguing with other churches and pastors. Instead of putting up fists and shouting out fighting words, be focused on how to seek the will of God and move the church forward.