My life as I follow Jesus Christ, and live life as a husband, father, friend, pastor, runner, coach, and sinner who found forgiveness and favor with God.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

I've been influenced today by...

Benny Perez, Pastor of The Church at South Las Vegas, courtesy of Swerve when he said "I can do all the study and bring in all the consultants but I must go back to the place of prayer, solitude and trust in the Lord that He will help me..."

Jud Willhite, Pastor of Central Christian Church, of courtesy of Rethink Monthly when he said "I have been convicted that my prayers are too small. I have been reading about he Great Awakening in America and just thinking about how the entire city of Philadelphia went out to a field to hear George Whitfield speak. It has happened before, and like how small my prayers are to imagine the entire city of Las Vegas going out into the desert to hear a message about Christ. My prayers are too small, and our God is so much bigger than I give Him credit. It hasn't sunk into my life enough but I am trying to expand my vision of what God can do and who He is, and all that He is accomplishing." Jud recently baptized 600 people spontaneously after preaching a message on following Christ. Someone stood amazed and said they remebered when the church only had 600 people. Jud replied that now the church had 15,000 and there would be a day when they would baptize 15,000 in a single day...God is big.

Joel Houston, of Hillsong Church and the band United, who said via twitter: @joelhouston to whom 'much' is given... 'much' is required...... how 'much' do you really want it?

2 Chronicles 11 & 12,
where I am reminded time and time again that the people of God are an ADVANCING people, a VICTORIOUS people, and MIGHTY people, who live DANGEROUSLY, and COURAGEOUSLY.

excerpts from 2 Chronicles 11...

7 David then took up residence in the fortress, and so it was called the City of David. 8 He built up the city around it....And David became more and more powerful, because the LORD Almighty was with him. 10 These were the chiefs of David's mighty men—they, together with all Israel, gave his kingship strong support to extend it over the whole land, as the LORD had promised- 11 this is the list of David's mighty men:
Jashobeam, a Hacmonite, was chief of the officers; he raised his spear against three hundred men, whom he killed in one encounter.

12 Next to him was Eleazar son of Dodai the Ahohite, one of the three mighty men. 13 He was with David at Pas Dammim when the Philistines gathered there for battle. At a place where there was a field full of barley, the troops fled from the Philistines. 14 But they took their stand in the middle of the field. They defended it and struck the Philistines down, and the LORD brought about a great victory.

20 Abishai the brother of Joab was chief of the Three. He raised his spear against three hundred men, whom he killed, and so he became as famous as the Three. 21 He was doubly honored above the Three and became their commander, even though he was not included among them.

22 Benaiah son of Jehoiada was a valiant fighter from Kabzeel, who performed great exploits. He struck down two of Moab's best men. He also went down into a pit on a snowy day and killed a lion. 23 And he struck down an Egyptian who was seven and a half feet tall. Although the Egyptian had a spear like a weaver's rod in his hand, Benaiah went against him with a club. He snatched the spear from the Egyptian's hand and killed him with his own spear. 24 Such were the exploits of Benaiah son of Jehoiada; he too was as famous as the three mighty men....

excerpts from 2 Chronicles 12

1 These were the men who came to David at Ziklag, while he was banished from the presence of Saul son of Kish (they were among the warriors who helped him in battle; 2 they were armed with bows and were able to shoot arrows or to sling stones right-handed or left-handed...8 Some Gadites defected to David at his stronghold in the desert. They were brave warriors, ready for battle and able to handle the shield and spear. Their faces were the faces of lions, and they were as swift as gazelles in the mountains. 14 These Gadites were army commanders; the least was a match for a hundred, and the greatest for a thousand. 15 It was they who crossed the Jordan in the first month when it was overflowing all its banks, and they put to flight everyone living in the valleys, to the east and to the west...

19 Some of the men of Manasseh defected to David....21 They helped David against raiding bands, for all of them were brave warriors, and they were commanders in his army. 22 Day after day men came to help David, until he had a great army, like the army of God.





Friday, June 19, 2009

My Summertime Journey through the Bible (Judges 13 - 1 Sam 3)

I've begun blogging through my summertime journey through the Bible. This will help record my thoughts - it's really for me, but all the better if you get something out of it too! I'm trying to read through the Bible in 90 days, even though I don't think I've ever read through the Bible in a year. The purpose is to have my Bible open all summer, and to let God breathe fresh on my life.

Today's Impact:

Delilah was the THIRD Philistine woman who Samson got involved with. The first couple times we do something sinful may seem harmless enough, but it's building to a crescendo that will bring a mighty fall. My guess is that Samson thought Delilah was just as "harmless" as the previous two encounters he had (Judges 14:1; Judges 16:1; Judges 16:4)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

My Summertime Journey through the Bible (Josh 1 - 15)

I decided today (a couple weeks late) to begin blogging through my summertime journey through the Bible. This will help record my thoughts - it's really for me, but all the better if you get something out of it too! I'm trying to read through the Bible in 90 days, even though I don't think I've ever read through the Bible in a year. The purpose is to have my Bible open all summer, and to let God breathe fresh on my life.

Today's Impact:
  • The Israelities take Jericho. Check this out. The walls of Jericho that fell were some of the earliest fortifications known to mankind. No other city had walls. It was the first of it's kind. So that means that the first city that God conquered was the MOST fortified, the MOST intimidating, and the MOST difficult to conquer...He went straight for the impossible to show his glory and power.
I am reminded that when God enters a life, we can have faith that the most intimidating wall in that life can fall by the power of God. Nothing should intimidate us - go after it. Addictions, lifestyles, life-long habits - no matter what it is - those wall will fall. Expect it.
I am reminded that nothing can destroy faith...nothing can rob victory...more than when we refuse to "devote to destruction" the things that don't honor God and don't belong in our lives. Woah.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Summertime Goals: UPDATE

Ok, two weeks in to my summertime goals, and it's time to reflect and reassess. I've got good news, and I've got bad news.

The good news is that at two weeks in I'm actively pursuing growth in the "health" and "spiritual" focal points.
  • I've joined Weight Watchers, and have truly kept to the program...My second weigh in will be today, so I'll see how much weight I've lost after one week. [UPDATE: I lost two pounds!] The program is really helping me stay focused on what is important to me which is healthy living. It allows me to eat anything (like the Papa Murphy's Cowboy Pizza I had Saturday night), but forces me to put it all in perspective and stay within healthy boundaries. I like it.
  • My marathon training is in full swing, and after my 14 mile run on Saturday, I'm really getting back in the groove.
  • I've been reading the Bible like crazy, and it's been a joy to really feed my spirit in the Word and choose to read rather than other less important things.
The bad news is that I haven't "met" all the standards I set two weeks ago
  • I didn't purchase the P90X. I thought I had it purchased via Craigslist but it fell through. After looking at my summer schedule, I just don't know how I can follow the "hour a day, everyday" requirement AND be gone for weeks at a time (dreamcenter, vacation, summer camp, etc.) AND continue to get all my miles in for marathon training. So, I'm going to let that goal go and start the P90X in the Fall.
  • Despite my huge increase in Bible reading, I missed a couple days and that puts me over 30 chapters behind! Wow! But thankfully I missed the latter half of Numbers and the first part of Deuteronomy, so I'm just picking up where I should be, and will try and get those chapters in on vacation.
I'll set some other goals later this week that will have to do with date nights, marriage & parenting books, and other "family" related goals. I really am looking forward to growing in my marriage with Jenn this summer.

Stay tuned!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Sunday Night Reflections

  • Super tired after a busy but great week
  • Saturday was a 14 mile run, a wedding and reception, and then final sermon prep for Sunday
  • Sunday was filled with preaching twice on two campuses, a DreamCenter missions trip meeting in Vancouver (at another church), and then directly going to the BBQ and Baptisms on Broughton Beach.
  • Chris and Chrissy's wedding was fantastic. So great to see two people who love Jesus so much, who have both been through so much, end up having a beautiful day yesterday...with many more to come.
  • Camas worship team hit a home run - I think we could have kept going...there is some legit stuff happening in that team! The people from the Northside our such encouragers! Really makes it easy to preach.
  • I had to laugh a bit when I saw our Portland worship team...missing three key musicians today, but they did great. Attendance seemed to be up, and everyone seemed engaged in the message.
  • I had lots of fun preaching the "Summer of '09: Fresh Breath" message today. Handing out Mentos was pretty fun too.
  • Despite the "fun" of preaching, I truly believe that a significant summer awaits us if we truly grab hold of what God is wanting to do in these next three months - not just in the overall church, but in individual lives and marriages as well.
  • Sam Bickle and Chris Stewart are probably the most valuable people in our church...I'm amazed at the time and work they exert to make each service happen.
  • So many volunteers do so many things that are never recognized. I'm so greatful for everyone's willingness to serve and carry the vision.
  • I enjoyed personally meeting three or four new families in church today. We seemed to genuinely "click".
  • Saw one person decide to become a "Christ Follower" today...that never gets old!
  • Baptized three people in the Columbia river in the afternoon...I LOVE THAT STUFF. And not only that but we had a handful of people share their own "Jesus encounter" stories which was a wonderful testimony to the unchurched families who were there to support their kids being baptized. (Thanks Matt, Jason, Greg, Anna, and Katie!)
  • The only bummer about this weekend was how little I saw Jenn and my baby girl. Dancing with them at the wedding was great, but now I'm looking forward to spending some extra special time with them both this week before I head to L.A. next weekend...any suggestions for a special date?
  • ok, that's it...veg time!