Tuesday, September 30, 2008
What started as a really bad burning throat turned in to a whole night of "God just take me now!"
I have been so sick the past two days. I am finally feeling a ton better but not totally well yet. I have always thought that a day of lying in bed would be great, however it is not that great when you can't breathe, your head feels like it is going to burst, your body aches, and you go from freezing to sweating every 45 seconds. Ah the joy of it all.
So now I have missed a full two days of work (yes, preachers do work during the week, not just the few hours you see us on Sunday). It's serious catch up time. I have to figure out how to cram a full week's work into three days. I know everything that needs to be done will be done and I appreciate the offers of help from many of you. Just keep praying and ask God to bless my time and productivity. I'm going to need it!
Guess I'll cancel my Friday morning tee time too.
Tuesday, September 16, 2008
"You've always known this is what you were supposed to do, right?"
That was the question posed to me this week. We are in the middle of our series "Got Purpose" and I am doing my best to help people understand what it means to have purpose and how to find their purpose.
I was talking with this guy and that was his statement/question to me. He was surprised at my answer, "No." In fact, I didn't even really believe that God wanted me to be involved in ministry as my career until late in my Sophomore year of college (and I was pursuing a Business Degree at the time). And those of you who have been around me for the past year have heard me say that I NEVER thought about being a Lead Pastor much less launching a church. Yet here we are just over 9 months into this thing and look at what is happening.
Purpose is a funny thing. Sometimes I think I have it figured out and sometimes I think I'm crazy. Oh yes, as I mentioned Sunday, I do have the direction, passion, confidence, and strength from knowing this is my purpose, but that doesn't mean that things are always easy. In fact, the same guy who asked me that question above also asked me this one, "Who do you talk to when you need help?" Another great question which I will answer at a later time.
For now just know this: Finding and living out your purpose is not a game of hide and seek. It is not necessarily real easy either. However, it is a very rewarding adventure that, in the end, leaves you with all the direction, passion, confidence, and strength you need.
So What? Start doing some investigating. Look at yourself, your gifts, talents, desires, and dreams. As you begin to clarify those things in your life, you will begin to see your purpose. We'll talk more about it this Sunday.
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
They were completely amazed and said again and again, "Everything He does is wonderful." Mark 7:36-37 NLT
Even after Jesus told the deaf man with the speech impediment and all those watching not to say anything about this, they told anyway.
When was the last time you were so amazed by something God did that you had to tell someone else about it, you just could not keep quiet about it?
I had lunch with a guy today and he asked me about Midtowne and how we started. As I began to tell the story for what is probably the millionth time (ministerially speaking), I found myself smiling and filled with amazement. God just keeps on doing amazing things here. I don't know why I am surprised but I am. He promised He would and He always keeps His word.
Why does He keep on doing amazing things? Not because of me I'm sure. But I think the answer is found in the earlier part of the story quoted above. The man in need was brought to Jesus by some people who obviously believed that Jesus could and would heal him. The man was in the right place at the right time. He put himself, or at least allowed himself to be put in, a position to be amazed. When you and I put ourselves, our friends, our family members, coworkers, neighbors, and team mates in the right place at the right time, God always does something amazing.
So What? What position do you need to be in right now? Who do you know who you can help get in a position for God to do something amazing in their life? And most importantly, why are you not taking action to make it happen?
Instantly the man could hear perfectly, and his tongue was freed so he could speak plainly! Mark 7:31 NLT
Wednesday, September 3, 2008
Gustav. When you hear that word, at least before this week, you probably thought of a Russian wrestler. Or maybe you thought of a villain in a James Bond movie. Or maybe you thought of a ride operator at Silver Dollar City during World Fest. Maybe not.
I bet now when you hear Gustav you think about all this lovely rain that is so gently watering our flowers and grass and the gentle breeze that is so lightly kissing the trees.
It's amazing to me that storms like this do such interesting things. Not just to the earth but to people. People have reacted in so many ways. Good job New Orleans for learning from Katrina. Good job FEMA for handling things better this time around too. The evacuees have taken the advice of the government and gotten out in time and have even been totally different in the way they have responded to this disaster (all very positive by the way).
So maybe this is the question we should ask ourselves: What have we learned in response to the "disasters" that have come in our life? You and I have a choice when disasters come. We can either get mad, blame others, and expect someone else to fix it, or we can look around, evaluate, plan, and prepare for the next one. In the midst of difficult times, we don't have time to blame others, we must take on these tough times and work hard to make sure that we not only make it through the difficulty, but learn from it also.
Disasters are coming. We had better get ready for them. And since you have already been through some, take the lessons you have learned and put them into action in your life today.