Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Tuesday's Two-Cents

this weeks to dos ~ RIPPLE, WAVE, several meetings, class, a handful of reading.

book I'm reading ~ Purpose Driven Church (Warren)

tunes that triggered ~ hands down the new DCB album - you must check it out (then let me know what you think!)

think about a thought ~ what if Jesus were to walk into your life (home, work, school, youth group, wherever) WWJT (What Would Jesus Tweet?) Seriously - I want to hear your thoughts on (140 characters or less) what Jesus would have to post to His Twitter about your life...

Scripture to skim ~ you pick....what are you liking this week - share with me!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Pass the Bacon!

This made me laugh so I had to pass it on...


Tuesday's Two-Cents

thoughts about the past week(end) ~ great weekend - Steph and I spent Saturday washing the cars and getting the garage cleaned out...finally it's clean and organized. Sunday my team and I participated in the Alzheimer's Memory Walk - good times - if you're interested in walking next year let me know. And then I had some great discussions Sunday evening at DIVE.

this weeks to dos ~ a couple meetings, some prep work on a project for this winter, things around the house and other randomness

book I'm reading ~ Purpose Driven Church (lovin' it and can't wait to see how it applies to GSPC)

tunes that triggered ~ just listening to a play list of random songs this week...I think I'm gonna go check out DCB new album that released today "Church Music."

thoughts on the coming week ~ eh, nothing too out there - it should be a good week!

Scripture to skim ~ again back to the Bible in the Year, check out the plan on the goodsheppc.org website - join in it's a blast!

Monday, September 21, 2009


So, I'm going to assume something (dangerous I know...) but if you're reading this I'm going to assume you're human!

If you're human then you face temptation!

So, what temptation is in your life?

Check out this great article on developing a plan to beat temptation in your life!


Friday, September 18, 2009

No boat....just a square!

See, good music can come with good lyrics...who needs "I'm on A Boat?" - that's right, no one!

Thought these youth workers did a great job...


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

If So....then Why?

Came across this interesting piece of info from the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life:

  • Congress is more Protestant (55 percent) than the U.S. general population (which is 51 percent), more Catholic (30 vs. 24 %), more Jewish (8 vs. 2 %), and more Mormon (3 vs. 2 %).
  • One in six Americans (17 percent) list no religious preference, compared to only five members of Congress (1%).
  • There are 43 Presbyterians* in Congress, or 8 percent of the total; by comparison, Presbyterians are only 3 percent of the U.S. population. Only two Protestant groups have more representation in Congress: Baptists (66) and Methodists (57).
  • There are 31 Presbyterians in the House(7 percent), 12 in the Senate (12 percent).
  • More Presbyterians in Congress are Republicans (24) than Democrats (19).
* All but one belong to the PC (USA).

So, my question is - if only 1% of Congress claims no religious preference then why do our politicians act the way they do? True, many will say 'because they are human,' but seriously, why?


Tuesday, September 15, 2009

You might not finish...what?

Crazy Love - chapter 2!

You could die before you finish reading this blog post. Yes, today, you could die!
"What about driving down the road at sixty-five miles per hour, only a few feet away from cars going the opposite direction at the same speed? Someone would only have to jerk his or her arm and you would be dead. I don't think that's morbid; I think it's reality."

--okay that was just a random part pulled from the first part of chapter 2....here comes my real thoughts on this chapter.

Suppose you are an extra in an upcoming movie. You will probably scrutinize that one scene where hundreds of people are milling around, just waiting for that two-fifths of a second when you can see the back of your head. Maybe your mom and your closest friend get excited about that two-fifths of a second with you...maybe. But no one else will realize it is you. Even if you tell them, they won't care.
Let's take it a step further. What if you rent out the theater on opening night and invite all your friends and family to come see the new movie about you? People will say, "You're an idiot! How could you think this movie is about you?"

Chan goes on to say many Christians are even more delusional than this person just described. So many people think and live like the 'movie of life' is all about them.

Now if you were to really just take a small step back and think about that...take a look at Scripture and THINK! God existed outside of time and therefore long, long, long before us. And then God created the world (See Genesis) and then more stuff happened (continue to see Genesis) and we still hadn't entered the picture, and we haven't even begun with what Scripture records as happening...so, how can anyone in their right mind think this 'movie' is about them?

I know what you're thinking - the sad thing is there are folks out there who just don't get it. Sure, we've all had a momentary lapse in judgment - we're all guilty of that - but seriously how is it possible that we live as if it were about us?

We have this two-fifths of a second long scene to live. I want my scene to come from 1 Corinthians 10:31.

What does this mean for you?

What does this mean for the church?

Pointing to Him,

Tuesday's Two-Cents

thoughts about the past week(end) ~ great week - first off my neighbor came over out of the blue and offered to get the final prep work done on our retaining wall (this was a blessing), I came home from work to find the entire first layer of the wall completed and level. The weekend was spent working a bit on the wall, running some errands and other tasks around the home. Sunday was the kick-off for Jr & Sr DIVE - I think all the groups had a great time.

this weeks to dos ~ more meetings, RIPPLE & WAVE, a movie screening for a film releasing in January (supposed to be a great movie for teens, parents & youth leaders). Finishing touches on the retaining wall, some reading, class and some other odds and ends!

book I'm reading ~ The Bible in a year with the church, Crazy Love, Purpose Driven Life, Purpose Driven Church (starting that one this week)

tunes that triggered ~ nothing really in particular - I'm currently stuck on a play list I've put together on my iPod.

thoughts on the coming week ~ I'm excited to see how WAVE turns out this week, to see the RIPPLE kids on the new playground and to see a special Leaders screening of the movie "To Save A Life."

Scripture to skim ~ check out www.goodsheppc.org and look up the Bible-in-a-year reading plan.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Teens can be good people too...

Ran across this story of a local teen who did the right thing!


Stop Praying...

Fools talk at God, the wise come to God without saying a word and stand in awe!

Which do we tend to do?

R.C. Sproul writes, "Men are never duly touched and impressed with a conviction of their insignificance, until they have contrasted themselves with the majesty of God."

I agree with Chan here "I sometimes struggle with how to properly respond to God's magnitude in a world bent on ignoring or merely tolerating Him. But know this: God will not be tolerated. He instructs us to worship and fear Him."

Characteristics of God:
  • God is holy. We don't get to decide who God is (Ex3:14). We don't change that. Isn't it a comfort to worship a God we cannot exaggerate?
  • God is eternal. Everything began at a certain time, except God - God exists outside of time, and since we are within time, there, is no way we will ever totally grasp that concept.
  • God is all-knowing. Scary isn't it? You may be able to 'pull one over' on your family or friends - but never on God.
  • God is all-powerful. Don't we live instead as though God is create for us, to do our bidding, to bless us, and to take care of our loved ones?
  • God is fair and just. No question about it: God hates and must punish sin. And He is totally just and fair in doing so.
What to you think?

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Crazy Love

I would like to introduce you to a friend, a Pastor, a father, an author and someone who is on a journey towards a closer and deeper relationship with his Creator; Francis Chan. Francis is the pastor of Cornerstone Church in Simi Valley, CA. He spends a lot of time traveling the country speaking to students and leaders alike. For our purposes here he is the author of "Crazy Love, Overwhelmed By A Relentless God."

Over the next 11 posts or so I'm going to talk about what Chan presents in each chapter and some of my thoughts on them (in relation to me, the Church and my church.) Please join the conversation - share your thoughts and heck if you're up to it - go pick up a copy of the book and read along!

In the opening paragraph Chan says, at first he thought it was all him, until he was standing before 20 thousand college students and asked: "How many of you have read the New Testament and wondered if we in the church are missing it?" Almost every hand went up he recalls. and mine would too!

In fact, I sat in worship just last week and wondered what we were not doing as a church? I thought of the message we try to hit home with the youth every week at youth group...the message of The Great Commission - to make disciples of all nations - to get out of our chairs and invite our friends, neighbors, family, etc to youth group (& worship) with us. I asked myself why this message hasn't been presented to the general church? Why don't we talk about evangelism in big church?

Now I'm thinking of the Gospel. Yes, the kind where you get the picture in your head of someone having an altar call! Last year in youth group we presented the Gospel message in some fashion every week. So, why don't we do that in big church? Are we as adults too afraid? I heard a pastor say this last week that Jesus spoke most about not being afraid, or worried, or full fear.

So, how do we as big church (not just the youth groups, or the younger generations) increase our desire for "more God?" How do we incorporate the Gospel and the Great Commission into our weekly worship experiences? Or are we okay with where we're at? Are we 'just comfortable?' I don't know about you but God has really been pushing me recently and I'm not happy with comfortable - I want my desire for more God to go through the roof.

Are you with me?

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The President, his speech and You!

I did not get a chance to listen to or see President Obama's speech to the students but I happen to see a nice article about it and wanted to share some thoughts and also hear some thoughts (from you - please share your comments here on the blog).

"Every single one of you has something that you're good at. Every single one of you has something to offer," Obama told students

This is so true - everyone has a gift, everyone has a strength...what is yours? (parents; ask your kids/teens what they feel their gift/strength is/are)

"be careful what you post on Facebook. Whatever you do, it will be pulled up again later somewhere in your life."

If only they understood this. Sometimes when people ask me if I'm on Facebook they laugh when I say yes. I think, wait, I'm not that old that it's funny that I'm on FB. In reality I'm there because of my job - it's a tool to connect with students, and it's where they're at, so as a Youth Worker we must go to where they are.

So what is the truth here? Will what kids post on Facebook really come back to haunt them someday? Chances are yes! If you're posting pictures, notes, etc about some of your behavior then colleges, future employers and oops even family may run into it. I've seen some pretty questionable material (photos, videos, links and more) from the youth of Good Shepherd. Ask yourself if that is really a true representation of who you are. Parents, are you on Facebook? If you answered NO and your child is, then I HIGHLY recommend you setup a profile today! My general advice to parents is that if you child is on a social networking site then they have to give unquestioned access to the parents at ANY TIME to their profile.

If you need help setting up a profile and your teen can't or isn't home enough to help you - ask, I'd love to give you some pointers! I've heard it said "if you wouldn't leave your front door unlocked and open overnight, then you shouldn't allow youth 'free' access to places like facebook."

"There is no excuse for not trying" he said in the speech. "Whatever you resolve to do, I want you to commit to it," Obama said. "The truth is, being successful is hard.

If you won't try, then who will do it for you? Regardless of if you voted for him or not, whether you like where his policies are taking us - you have to come together and agree the above statements ring true for our nation. America is not a nation of 'handouts,' if you want to get something or go somewhere in this life you have to try, you must put in the effort. I was once told and I still believe it today that "hard isn't easy, hard builds character." Isn't character what this country needs more of?

The only free gift we get in this life is God's gift of Salvation, and is that really free? In order to receive it we have to accept it and give Him our whole life. Last time I checked living the Christian walk was not easy - but boy is it ever worth it!

So there you have it, some thoughts on the Presidents thoughts - now what are yours?


Tuesday's Two-Cents

thoughts about the past week(end) ~ it was long...which in most cases is good - but we spent everyday over the weekend working on replacing a retaining wall in our front yard. Never again will I take on a project like this...clay + roots + un-level ground + more roots = a crappy attempt at a wall! I'm sure once it's complete it will look all nice and such - but building it sucks!

this weeks to dos ~ back to work tomorrow, some meetings to get to and probably some more work on that darn wall.

thoughts on the coming week ~ at this point I don't really have any...just a lot of random thoughts running through my head!

think about a thought ~ check out my post below (What's your FIRST) and feel free to share your thoughts in a comment or an email this week - i'm really curious what you're thinking!

Scripture to skim ~ check out the Bible in a Year reading plan on GSPC's website www.goodsheppc.org

Sunday, September 6, 2009

What's your FIRST?

Everyone worships?

Don't believe me, follow along. Everyone has the same amount of minutes in the day, and days in the week. God has graciously given ALL of us the choice of how and where to spend our time.

So, take a look at where you spent your time in the past week - and - where you're planning to spend it in the next.

Wherever the majority of your time is spent is what you are worshiping?

Does this mean you have to spend two hours every morning in silence reading Scripture and praying to God? Nope! But it does mean we have to put God first; this week and next and the next.

We must stop and ask ourselves are we taking time daily to talk with (& listen) to where God is calling us? I mean really take time, not just the 'after-thought' time! Are we joining others in (corporate) worship on a weekly basis? And outside of that are we joining in fellowship with other believers? (i.e. a small group, Bible Study, class, youth group, or something to help us continue to grow Spiritually)

And lastly, are we sharing all of this with those we encounter in our lives? Yes, it's the "E" word - Evangelism, and Jesus calls us all to 'go out and make disciples.'

So, what are you going to worship this week? What are you going to put First?


Thursday, September 3, 2009

NIV or not?

Check out the article posted in the USA Today:

Update of popular 'NIV' Bible due in 2011

what are your thoughts?


Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Tuesday's Two-Cents

thoughts about the past week(end) ~ it was nice, a bit slower than the recent past (weekends). Finally got the check book caught up and then headed to camp for the annual Quilt Auction. It was great to see some old friends...and we even came home with two auction items. After worship on Sunday we went to pick up the final load of our retaining wall brick. All in all a pretty low-key weekend.

this weeks to dos ~ class, a couple of meetings, RIPPLE & WAVE have their first meetings of the year (woo hoo!) and a few other odds and ends. Then a four-day weekend - you know what that means....time to build the retaining wall....anyone who wants to help with some manual labor come on over. Oh, the Bible in a year reading starts at Good Shep today too...hoping to participate in this.

book I'm reading ~ Purpose Driven Youth Ministry - D. Fields. I've read this one before - just doing a quick review. Then I'm on to something new.

thoughts on the coming week ~ lookin' forward to it.

think about a thought ~

Scripture to skim ~ Check out the Resources page at www.goodsheppc.org for the Bible in a year reading plan and instead of skimming this week - join us in getting started on this exciting adventure over the coming year.