Friday, November 23, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving

Today I was surrounded by family and friends for Thanksgiving at my Mom and Dad's house in Indiana. I am very fortunate to have them. We played Scene it (that movie game) and I talked a lot of trash before the game but I spoke too soon. I found out that I don't know movies like I thought I did. Needless to say my sister and I lost miserably but I will play again... and will probably suck just as bad the next time I play. I am thankful for my wife. She is the coolest person I know and I am glad we have each other. Love you babe - Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

T.O. as a Spiritual Leader??

When you see the letters T.O. you might be thinking of Turn Over, or Tasty Omelet, or the first two letters in your favorite breakfast food... yes TOast, but most everyone knows T.O. who plays for the Dallas Cowboys. He is a hot tempered, charismatic, loose cannon of a football player but is also a serious play maker. T.O. or Terrell Owens used to play for the Philadelphia Eagles lost his cool too many times for Donovan McNabb to keep throwing him the ball. Last year he starting playing with the Cowboys and has since found his groove with QB Tony Romo. Romo and Owens connect so well T.O. has been known to run another route than what Romo called for. T.O. just knows that they will connect for the majority of the time because they play so well together and have a chemistry together that every coach would love to see in their players.

I thought this was interesting on Sunday when I heard this because of the translation it makes into church world. There are those that you lead, disciple, serve, or take part in helping develop and need you to know them so well that you might be able to step outside of the normal route in order to make a better play in terms of their development.

There is a book I am excited to read by Dennis McCallum from Xenos Christian Fellowship called 'Organic Disciple-Making'. I heard him speak about it at a conference I went to this summer. McCallum advocates an organic approach to discipleship that involves a unique method towards an individual spiritual development. He likens it to building a fire. He said that he's been camping with enough city boys to know that not all men know how to build a good fire.
He speaks of the tinder as a initial concern for a nonbeliever and the light to your presentation to that person about their need for repentance. The logs put on after the fire is lit represent your prayers over that person you are teaching. It is common and God ordained that we agonize over these people in prayer asking that God give us clear marching orders as to know when to throw on the next log to keep the fire going.

It is tempting at times as disciplers to want to throw accelerant on the fire if it isn't growing like it should. This seems to be a quick fix but you get what you pay for in the long run by using this approach. It is better to watch the fire and if it is growing all by itself at a normal rate than that person will respond positively to the next level but we have to be patient with those that aren't as fast at comprehending biblical truth. This requires much prayer and leaning on the Spirit of God to show us what is the best approach for these kinds of situations.

I believe that most people don't train others in the faith or share their faith at all for that matter because paying close attention to someone's development takes time but it is well worth it to see a new believer serving, loving, and living like Jesus because that is what God wants rather than what the person who is teaching them wants.

There might be an approach or program that your church favors in order to grow people but we must know that as much as people are unique so must the method be that is used to grow them.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Talking Heads

Some of us know the Talking Heads as a band in the 80's if you're old enough to remember but anyone in ministry for too long knows a 'talking head'. These are they that can talk shop about the latest trends in church world with some level of passion and urgency but surprisingly enough sit behind a desk in a church office in a leather chair sipping on a cup of joe when suddenly they realize that they actually haven't engaged in conversation with someone outside of the church in over a year... or two but who's counting.

I was talking with a co-worker today about this and felt that the only influence on the mission field that most people have consists of about 12 people on mySpace - give or take. I went to a conference in October called Catalyst. Craig Groschell of Life Church in Oklahoma said something that I will never forget. He said "God, forgive us when we become full time pastor's and part time followers of Jesus."

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

My pastor woke up to this in his backyard this morning... I really don't have much else to say. We were going to try to set it on it's feet because of the rigor mortis but we figured that was just a little too redneck. It had eight points and when he came home at lunch to drag it away someone had come into his yard and sawed off the antlers.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007


There is new band I am lisening to called Hem. They have a song called Redwing and I really feel the words.

"We are standing on the rooftops
We are circling like sparrows
We are tiny, we are trembling,
Scared of everything
But the heart is still a red wing"

The basic idea of all of us wanting so badly to be a part of something bigger than ourselves.
I love the line that says we circle like sparrows. It took a few times to listen and sink in that sparrows don't circle like predatory birds. We're all tiny, trembling, and scared of everything and that's perfectly ok because our hearts are still redwings.

Sleepy Time

My kids have a tendency to get out of bed about a dozen times before they really go to sleep. Tonight I tried something a little different to help them go to sleep. I made up a play list on itunes called sleepy time and played in softly in the front room. I checked on them a few minutes ago and they are all sound asleep. I must admit I'm getting a little tired as well. Here is the play list...

Sweet Baby James - JT
Betting On Trains - Hem
How's The World Treating You - Alison and JT
Lazy Eye - Hem
walkin' man - JT
Sailor - Hem
Carolina on my mind - JT
Polly's Dress - Hem
You Can Close Your Eyes - JT
Sarah Maria - JT
Waltz - Hem
A Junkie's Lament - JT
For My Father - Andy Mckee
My Traveling Star - JT
Rylynn - Andy Mckee
Wandering - JT
Into the Ocean - Andy Mckee
Daddy's Baby - JT
Such Great Heights - Iron & Wine
Naked As We Came - Iron & Wine
Lion's Mane - Iron & Wine
Waitin For A Superman - Iron & Wine
Hold Me Jesus - Rich Mullins
Ebb Tide - Emile Pandolfi
An Affair to Remember - Emile Pandolfi
Until it's Time For You to Go
Emile Pandolfi An Affair to Remember