Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Easter with Hefner

I have had a few comments about using the quote from Hugh Hefner in my message Sunday. None of them negative by the way. All of them positive and most of them expressing concern for Mr. Hefner's situation. (BTW...to hear the quote and message you can go to the Midtowne Church web site.)

When it all boils down you have to come back to Easter. It is not enough that Jesus was born of a virgin or even that He died on the cross for our sin. The key is the resurrection. Without that, we are wasting our time.

The first Easter at Midtowne was amazing. All of the work on the building was complete (Kenny and I took a much needed day off yesterday and even took our wives out for dinner last night). The music was fantastic. The crowds at both services were great. And the teaching was not bad either, thanks to Mr. Hefner.

So now what? Easter is not the end, as we discovered Sunday. It is the beginning. It is now time for us to do what God put us here to do: go and show His love to everyone. Or as Hugh Hefner said, get in on "all kinds of things that we all hope are true." We know they are true. Now we share them with others.

Monday, March 17, 2008

It's Coming

With all of the work on the building and all the other things that have been going on the past two weeks, I have allowed a few things to slip. So let me start by apologizing to any of you who I have neglected the past two weeks. Next let me say that I don't want to miss out on what is in store for us this week.

This is the most "holy" week of all for Christians. It is the celebration of the most significant event in the history of the world. This Sunday we will celebrate and remember the most courageous and loving act anyone has ever performed. This Sunday is Easter and we will recognize Easter because it an event that sets the Christian religion apart from all others.

We celebrate an empty grave. I can't think of any other religions who can claim that and be accurate about it. While there are some who still believe the resurrection of Jesus to be a hoax, I choose to believe otherwise. Because if we don't, we are wasting a lot of resources on this thing we call church.

So here is my encouragement to all of us for this week. Don't miss out on this most significant celebration. Be sure to go worship where ever you choose and take someone with you. The event we celebrate changed the course of the world and it might just change the life of your friends and family.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Overwhelmed or Excited?

So are you excited?

That was the question posed to me yesterday after I told a friend of mine all about the church and all that was going on. I also told them about our plans to have two services for Easter since we have been growing so fast.

Evidently I hesitated and gave a very unconvincing "Yes."

Don't get me wrong. I am very excited. Things could not be much better. We are growing in every way. People are coming, learning, participating, committing, being baptized...it's awesome. But I would be a little less than honest if I didn't say that I am still a bit overwhelmed (and you know how I feel about honesty).

The cool thing is I know that God has called us to this ministry at this time and in this place. I also know that there is nothing that I can't handle with His help. I also know that God has put an incredible team of volunteers and others around me to serve with me. We have already seen and experienced His Best in so many ways and because He is faithful, which means He always comes through (and that is my favorite characteristic of God), I don't expect any thing less than His Best to continue.

My prayer today for you and for me is that we would continue to boldly move ahead with our mission. That we would always recognize Him in it, and that we would share this overwhelming excitement with everyone with whom we come in contact today.

Are you excited?