Thursday, January 31, 2008

Article on me in the paper today

The Lakewood Sun Post ran an article about me and West Shore Church today (Thur. Jan 31). You can find it at the top of page 2 (A2). If you are not local and would like to check out the aritcle online you can go to: article

However you will miss my big ole' mug smiling at you! the picture is not included in the online article.

For more info on the conference that is mentioned go to:

Make a great week!


Wednesday, January 30, 2008

on the right track

Man, I have just felt kicked around by the enemy the last few days! I am in a war over my mind and thought life. Sometimes we forget that there is another team on the field as we are trying to serve God, and then BAM! we are kissing the turf. One benefit of experience is that I know this usually happens as I am moving in the right direction and making an impact for God's Kingdom. So yay!! I am being attacked!! woohoo! Ok, I'm not excited about the attack or the hard work of spiritual warfare in my life, but I do choose to see this as a sign that the church is moving forward.

We have that worship and leadership conference in February with Russell Fragar who used to be the worship leader at Hillsong Church in Australia. I have yet to see it, but I believe there is an article on me and the church in our local paper, which I hope God uses to bring glory to Himself and exposure for the church.

Anyway, as I continue to live out my personal mission to make the Name of Jesus great, I am looking for God's Kingdom to break through in bigger ways. If that means I take a few bruises along the's all good.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

My Son, Josiah

This morning I was in the car listening to the new Steven Curtis Chapman CD that I got for Christmas. I have been feeling pretty overwhelmed with the "stuff" of life lately. Sometimes it just gets out of control and starts choking you, ya know? Anyway, on one of the songs he has his son sing a little part with him. It wasn't a sappy tear-jerker kind of song; in fact it was upbeat and so far my fav (Children of God). As I thought about how SCC must have felt to have his son sing on the CD with him, my thoughts and heart drifted toward my own son. I thought about what if one day I get to listen to my son preach the Word of God...and I just lost it. Every dad hopes that in some way his son will walk in his footsteps when he grows up, but with what I do it's a calling not a choice. But the thought of my son growing up with the call of God on his life to preach the Word, just completely destroys me (in a good way!) As I said I cannot push or prod my son in that direction, even though I know someone can "preach" the Wordin various ways with various vocations. I know God has a unique and special plan for my son that is all his own. But I found myself praying two things though my tears. "God, let my son be a lover of your Word." and "God help me to live in such a way that if you do call him, he will have seen a dad that loves you completely and tries to follow you authentically everyday."

Just some thoughts to share...

God bless you today!

Monday, January 7, 2008

Past and Future

In studying the life of Abraham this morning, God showed me something. Initially when God called Abram, He called him "out of" something. He called him to leave behind all that he knew; all that he was comfortable with. You could say that He called him to a "new life." That is exactly what God does when He calls us in salvation. He calls us out of an old life that might be comfortable and familiar, but it is broken and in pieces. He calls us out with a promise for the future that He will work in and through us. This is what it means to be born again with a new life. We leave the old behind through repentance of sin and trust in God...and it is good!

There is a stage two in our development with the Lord. You see God doesn't call us out to leave us on our own. Not only does He save us, but He also wants to form the character of Christ within us. It is part of His ultimate plan to re-establish His kingdom here on bring His blessings into our lives. It is a process of maturing in our faith. You see God gave Abraham another command later on. Abram, whose name was now Abraham, had seen the fulfillment of God's promises in his son Isaac...or so he thought. You see God had much bigger plans in mind. It was through Abraham's lineage that the Savior was going to come to restore all things. But this second command was for Abraham to sacrifice, to give up, that fulfilled promise by sacrificing Isaac on an altar. What would we have said? "But God you're supposed to be different than this?" "But God you gave him to me, he's mine!" Don't we often hang onto what God has given as if they were ours and not God's?

But here's the difference...the first command was for Abraham to surrender his broken past and came with a promise. This time the command came and Abraham had to trust God with his future without any new assurances. Have you been there yet Christian? It's easy in many ways for us to surrender our broken messed up lives to the Lord. It's easy to receive forgiveness and a new start. But have you made it to maturity point yet, where God asks something of you that makes no sense and you just need to obey and trust that God really is in control of your life? Where you cut the net away and truly take the leap of faith.

By way of testimony, God led me down that path and may do so again at some point. When my family and I left my position of youth pastor in Indiana years ago, we had such high hopes of what was coming. We were sure of the Lord's direction and confident in what we would see. What we found was me having to lay down everything on the altar, and God's silence. For two years we had to trust that God's promises were still at work in our lives. We had to trust while looking foolish to many people. Because of that faithfulness, towards the end of that time we received renewed promises from the Lord which we have not seen fully fulfilled...but my wife and I have such a deeper, more rich kind of faith than we've every had. Laying his son, his dream, down on that altar; raising the knife to strike in must have been agonizing and profoundly transformational.

Churches are filled with "Stage One" Christians. Many leave when the "Stage Two" command is given and abort their destiny. Will you embrace it?