Friday, November 30, 2007


I leave for Israel in three days. It has been a dream of mine to go to Israel for quite some time now. I am thrilled about the opportunity that the Lord has presented for me. I have mixed emotions because my wife and two kids will be staying behind. I am the biggest home body...I love being with my wife and kids and whenever I have to leave them it is always tough.
I am so grateful for a wife who is so supportive of the ministry that God has called me to. I really don't know what I would do without my wife, Pam. She is truly an amazing woman and gift from God. I pray that my kids do not drive her too crazy while I'm gone. I keep having weird dreams that after I return from this eight day trip that my wife is going to be ready to hang me from the roof or something. My last extended trip both of my kids and wife got sick...not a pretty sight. Boy and I praying for something different this time around...
I am really asking God to use this trip in my life to expose my heart to more of His Truth and plans that He has for me. I am traveling with twenty four other pastors who are all much older than me, and all but one I do not know from Adam. But even in that I am asking the Lord that I would remain humble and willing to learn from these men. Usually before long trips like this I feel much more prepared practically, emotionally and spiritually, but for some reason that has not been the case with this trip. I feel I have so much up in the air and at times I literally feel like a chicken with his head cut off, but it doesn't matter because the reality is that in three days I leave. So all I can hope for is that God would settle my heart and help me to get the things in order that I need to get done.
So with that I bid you "Shalom"...or if you be from the park that would be "peace out homey!"

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Another Mile...seriously?

I have been reading this book by Mel Blackaby. It is an easy read but I am enjoying it a lot. This book has really caused me to look introspectively into my heart and life. The thesis of this book comes out of Matthew 5:38-45 In that passage Jesus says "whoever compels you to go one mile, go with him two." What Jesus is referring to there is the custom and law of the day. You see Roman soldiers would have to carry all of their gear as they traveled from town to town. It was law that at any time that a Roman soldier could require someone to carry his gear for one mile. By law the person chosen by the soldier person would have to drop whatever they were doing and carry the pack for a mile. One mile was the limit. Once that mile had been achieved the soldier would have to haul the stuff himself or get another chump to carry his stuff. Now carry the stuff wasn't the worst part for a Jew. For a Jew to carry the pack of an enemy made it even worse. But Jesus says go the extra mile...

Mel's point is that Jesus doesn't call us to do our duty; He calls us to what is not our duty. It isn't our duty to turn the other check, go another mile or repay evil with a blessing, but Christ wants us to dispense grace. Now here is the kicker, Jesus wants us to do this because this exactly what He has done for us and continues to do. Going the extra mile is hard, there is no doubt about it. The extra mile wars against my flesh, my pride, my, my, my, but Jesus went even further. Going the extra mile demonstrates the heart of Christ and reflects the Father's glory. I am praying that God would well up in me that type of spirit, heart and focus, that I would do what is not my duty and know that in doing so I reflect the life and love of my Savior Jesus Christ. I pray that you will also consider going the extra mile.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Walk Baby Walk...

My wife and I have been working with my one year old daughter, Emily, who we affectionately call the "queen bee", (if you knew her you would know why) on getting her to walk. Two days ago we had this huge breakthrough as she walked across the living room several times.
Each time I would stand her up in a certain spot and then stretch my arms out towards her and say "walk baby walk."
You could almost see her brain turning as she would look at me and contemplate whether she should really try it or just go back to the floor where it was safe. There were times that she would dare to take those frightful steps and than other times where she would quickly squat down and begin to crawl sometimes in a totally different direction.
As I got my daughter up this morning I was reflectting back to that scene of trying to get my daughter to walk. You see for quite some time now God has set something on my heart and I know that at some point it is going to require that I too "walk." But the reality is that just like my daughter I am going to have to overcome some doubt and some fears and trust the ONE who is bidding me to come. As I have had time to reflect and pray this morning God revealed to me that I need to be training my heart in this matter of "walking" a lot more, in fact daily. But, to be totally honest I have allowed some complacency to settle into my heart. I desire to have the faith to step out of the boat, but to tell you the truth at times I like the party that is going on in the boat way too much. I thank God for His patience with me and I pray that He will continue to call me to "walk" and I hope that I will have the faith to respond. The Bible is clear that without faith it is impossible to please my challenge to myself and to whoever stumbles across these ramblings is "walk baby walk."

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Thanksgiving Ramblings

I know I am a day early, but if things go my way tomorrow than I should be busy eating and watching football all day...I have so much to be thankful for, but none more important than Jesus Christ. Without Christ I have no idea where I would be at this moment. Christ has changed my life and has given me direction and purpose. It is amazing to think that we have a God who loves us unconditionally and who is faithful even when we are faithless. Yes indeed I am most thankful for Jesus Christ who paid the ultimate price for my sin and who has freed me from the bondage of my sin.

I am also thankful for my wife, the greatest, most gorgeous woman I have ever seen. She is such a wonderful blessing in my life. She radiates Christ in so many ways and she amazes me everyday with the way she loves me and our kids. I thank God for my wife every day. We have had an incredible journey over the last twelve years and I look forward to the days ahead. I am also thankful for my two rug rats. They are such a joy. I look forward to see what God does in each of their lives. There are few things in my life that can compare to being a dad. I absolutely love my kids. So much to be thankful for, but I guess I will end with the friends that God has blessed me with. God has truly surrounded me with some terrific people to share life with. I pray that you have a great Thanksgiving and I hope that you will take the time to thank God for all He has done and all He has given to you. Happy Thanksgiving!

give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thess. 5:18

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Yes! Jesus Loves Me

One of my favorite parts of my day is getting my son, Max, up and ready for school. He is such a blessing to his mom and I. God has taught me so much through this special little guy's life. My son loves music, and he just lights up when his mom and I sing to him. Now I have got to confess his mother is a MUCH, MUCH, MUCH better singer. Her voice is sweet, mine on the other hand is just plain ol' ruff...
This morning I began to sing "Yes, Jesus loves me" to my son, and his face just lit up. His smile that just seems to go from ear to ear can melt my heart. And every time I stopped he would clap and he would sign to me "more", "more" and I would just keep singing that to him. Now in my mind I am thinking what a cute little children's song and yet God quickened my heart and said it may be a children's song, but it's littered with TRUTH. Truth that you should never take for granted. God loves us, not because we are worthy or we are special, but because He is merciful and gracious. He has demonstrated that love through the cross of His Son and He continues to demonstrate that love to us each and every day. "But God demonstrates His love towards us, that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us." Romans 5:8
"Yes Jesus loves me the Bible tells me so." I pray that I would not belittle or make light of that truth, but that I would embrace it and that it would create in my heart a smile as big as my son Max's. God is truly good.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Amazing Grace

Over the last several weeks we have been teaching through a series entitled "Hi Def". Our hope has been to give those who attend Summit Church a clearer picture of what a disciple of Jesus Christ is to BE... We have four core values at Summit; God, Truth, Love and Mission. Our Team decided to add five thresholds that we believe will flow out of the life of a believer as they anchor and build their lives around these values. The thresholds are as follows: Intimacy with God, Qualitative Distinctiveness, Stewardship of Life, Spiritual Giftedness and Grace Story. Yesterday we began the discussion on Grace Story. We defined Grace Story as embracing the fullness of the Gospel and being transformed by it in such a powerful way that you seek to share God's message with others.

The desire yesterday was to clarify that we can not share our Grace Story until we actually have one. So we set our teaching to layout the Gospel and God's redeeming love through Jesus' sacrifice on the cross. We talked about God's amazing and powerful grace. We challenged our people to make a move towards the cross of Christ and God moved in an incredible way. As the band sang Amazing Grace my heart absolutely jumped as people came down to make a decision to make Christ the Lord and Savior of their lives. At Summit we do not usually do a traditional alter call, but yesterday was a different day. Each time a person responded to the Lord's leading the rest of the church applauded. It was incredible. You could truly sense the presence of God. God's grace is truly "amazing" and I am still in awe that He would save a wretch like me!

New To This...

I am new to this whole blog thing. I have always been interested in writing and for the last few years I have been committed to journaling my experiences with God through this spiritual journey that He has me on. I have no idea where this blogging thing will go, but I look at it as another outlet to share the things that God is teaching me and share the experiences He is allowing me to have. So with that I am off to enter this realm of blogging....