Archive for April 2003

O.k., so I haven’t been posting much lately. Life’s been super hectic and I haven’t found the time. I kinda doubt that will change over the next few days, but after that I may turn into a blogging maniac. I’ve got three more days left at the church. Yesterday was the big farewell thang. It was mostly uncomfortable in the sense that I don’t really like lots and lots of attention drawn my way, but people were very kind and gracious to Michelle and I. The leadership of the church did a little commissioning prayer deal for us. Big Baptist potluck last night. I did one last teaching, which was fun. All in all, I’d say it was a really good day – pretty well balanced, and encouraging. This seems to have turned out just like we hoped it would – the church is sending us to go where God […]

Mark Palmer has posted the outcome of his wife, Jennifer’s cancer surgery earlier today. Devastating news, and yet there is a tangible sense of God’s grace at work in this family. Please pray, pray, pray for them.

Praying like crazy for a guy I’ve never met, and his wife who is having cancer surgery tomorrow.

A few more thoughts on the whole mission statement thing . . . One of my struggles to this point in developing a concise statement of purpose/vision/mission is in developing what my understanding of success looks like. Is it more important that I be a part of developing a community characterized by deep relationships of impact or is it more important to scatter the seeds of the kingdom life as widely as possible (which looks a heckuva lot like pursuing a numbers oriented crowd)? Maybe it’s somewhere in between the two, and it’s not necessarily the case that the two are mutually exclusive. If “deep relationships of impact” are the measure of success, I know that it will be deeply satisfying and stimulating to my own growth constantly. It will mean that I’m honest enough with myself and others to mean that no single person will be important than any […]

When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so they could embalm him. Very early on Sunday morning, as the sun rose, they went to the tomb. They worried out loud to each other, “Who will roll back the stone from the tomb for us?” Then they looked up, saw that it had been rolled back–it was a huge stone–and walked right in. They saw a young man sitting on the right side, dressed all in white. They were completely taken aback, astonished. He said, “Don’t be afraid. I know you’re looking for Jesus the Nazarene, the One they nailed on the cross. He’s been raised up; he’s here no longer. You can see for yourselves that the place is empty. Now–on your way. Tell his disciples and Peter that he is going on ahead of you to Galilee. You’ll see him […]

A quick word about Good Friday. I’m glad that Easter and Passover coincide this year. It emphasizes to me that the exodus of the Israelites from Egyptian captivity foreshadowed my own exodus from the bondage of sin into the ultimate freedom of life eternal. Both involve death, both involve a whole new reality of life.

O.k., I’ve read a some of the hot leadership/management books, been to the seminars, and followed the programs. In my rethinking church, etc., I’ve come to see how much of the current church culture has been influenced by non-biblical business forms (not necessarily anti-biblical, but certainly non-biblical). In some cases, it’s fairly benign, in others it’s dangerous. I’m finding, though, that I am tempted to go back and pick up one of those management concepts that has been adopted widely in the modern church . . . the mission statement. I’ve resisted developing one for my new church start thus far because I fear that if I boil down my whole philosophy of ministry into one tidy sentence I’ll somehow sterilize it, limit it, and neuter it. I mean, how could I possibly capture everything I’ve been through over the past couple of years in just a few words? Obviously […]

I want to live a life of amazement. Not in the sense that I would produce anything amazing (although I do make a fine quiche), but that I would see God at work and just capture the moment with nothing more than a gasp. The only thing I can compare that kind of feeling to is the few times I’ve been able to see Phil Keaggy play a live solo concert – just him, an acoustic guitar, and a small rack of low-tech effects. I’ve met the man, and he’s really cool and loves God a lot, but quite honestly, dude is a freak. I watch him play guitar and have no idea where he comes up with that stuff. In talking with him, I know that he feels the same way about it. Truth be told, he really doesn’t know much about how to play the guitar. I attended […]

Brain dead. Just finished an all-day project. A written exit interview for the church. Kind of surreal, really.

Meditate on these words this holy week . . . “Just watch my servant blossom! Exalted, tall, head and shoulders above the crowd! But he didn’t begin that way. At first everyone was appalled. He didn’t even look human– a ruined face, disfigured past recognition. Nations all over the world will be in awe, taken aback, kings shocked into silence when they see him. For what was unheard of they’ll see with their own eyes, what was unthinkable they’ll have right before them.” Who believes what we’ve heard and seen? Who would have thought GOD’s saving power would look like this? The servant grew up before God–a scrawny seedling, a scrubby plant in a parched field. There was nothing attractive about him, nothing to cause us to take a second look. He was looked down on and passed over, a man who suffered, who knew pain firsthand. One look at […]