Monday, August 31, 2009

Prayer of Thanks

God I thank you for Your continual grace and mercy. I thank You for the many who made decisions this weekend to trust You as their Lord and Savior. I thank You for the amazing stories of life change. I thank You for the many men and women who partner with us in this mission. I thank You for their willingness to lay down their name and lose themselves in Yours. I thank You for our staff and for their humility, burden for the lost, passion for Your glory and commitment to Your Truth.

Father I pray that for those who accepted Your free gift of salvation through the Gospel of Jesus Christ that You would continue to show them Your reality and grow them in their new found relationship with You. I pray that we as believers would steward the gift of grace well and seek to dispense grace in the lives of those you allow to cross our paths.

Father I am amazed at what You are doing in and thru Summit Church, but I pray that we never forget that its not about our church, but the Your Body. I pray that we do not forget that its not about filling a building but fueling a movement of people that live on mission. I thank You Lord for allowing us to finishing our fiscal year ahead of budget. Thank You for Your incredible blessings. You are amazing. Father may Your people continue to steward their resources faithfully and may we as Your church continue to use all You have given to us in a manner that reflects You and furthers Your Kingdom. Father I am so excited about the days ahead and I pray that You would continue to pour out Your Spirit and lead us on to Your agenda. You are mighty to save Father and I thank You for continuously moving the mountains. I love You Lord. Amen.

If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, move from here to there and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you. Matthew 17:20

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Just Thoughts...

My lack of discipline in updating my blog, is not due to having nothing to say, but due to not having the time to write it. And since I am at the mechanic for the third time in five days, I thought I would take the time I would spend sitting frustrated and use it to post my frustration...just kidding! These are just random thoughts, there is absolutely no rhyme or order to them, they are just the thoughts of a husband, father, pastor, friend and follower of Christ...

- I am absolutely in love with my wife. Every season of our lives together gets sweeter. I love watching God work in her and thru her. I love that she loves of kids selflessly. I love that she supports me in ministry. I love that she is quick to give me grace. I love the way she loves her friends. I love how she pretends to be interested in the Yankees simply because she knows I am.

- Speaking of the YANKS- I love that they are playing better, even though they had a tough lost last night. I love that their high price tagged players are starting to come through. It should make for an exciting fall.

- I love my kids. My son and y daughter are an absolute joy. I love how they can make me laugh, cry, drive me crazy all in the same moment, but I wouldn't trade a thing. I love spending time with them together and individually. I love watching them and wondering what God's plan for each of them are.

- I love the team I get to serve with at Summit. I love the fact that they are committed to the mission, to their call and to one another. I have never been around such a wonderful group of humble and hungry folks that care so much about the lost and about the glory of God.

- I love my friends. I love the guys that I get to do life with, that care genuinely about me, my family and my walk.

- I have a big problem with people who talk behind my back but share it as a prayer request...that's just lame.

- I love the people of Summit. My heart leaps for those who are running hard after Christ and my heart breaks for those who continue to be enslaved by their sin.

- I love the fact that our church is growing...that is awesome, but I can't help but be cautious, because the growth that we are after goes way beyond how many people are sitting in our seats. The reality is that any monkey with a suit and charisma can draw a crowd, but only the Spirit of God can bring life change and create movement.

- Pray Lee County has been a personal blessing to me and I have loved hearing the stories of others who are committed to praying for our city over 40 days.

- I am extremely restless about the future of our ministry. We have a huge God-given vision and we will be facing some God-sized challenges in this next year. And I am praying that our faith will remain in God and not in ourselves.

- I love that the Leadership Team of Summit is staying hungry for the future and are not desiring to pull back or even worse stop because of uncertainty or worse fear. I love these men's courage, leadership and faith.

- I am broken for the marriages that I continue to see that are in trouble, and I stand in amazement of the ones God is bringing restoration and healing to.

- I am grateful that God continues to break me and expose me to my sin, my pride, my faithlessness, and my hurts but it is so needed.

- I love that this weekend I get to do the wedding of a young couple who attend Summit and on the same weekend do the renewal of vows of one of my good friends.

God is good...and I pray that He is at work mightily in and thru your life. God Bless.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Running for Max

I wanted to take this moment to once again thank all of you for your support of me running in the New York City half-marathon in honor of my son, Max. Your prayers, encouragement and donations to Organization for Autism Research mean more to me than I could ever express. After my son's diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder two years ago I took up running as a form of great meditation, prayer and reflection. I felt strongly that I could take my love for my son, Max, and my new found love for running and do something proactive with it. I discovered the Organization for Autism Research and the awesome work they are doing in funding research, helping families and bringing public awareness to this growing epidemic. Today 1 in 150 kids are diagnosed with this disorder. Two years ago our little boy did not talk and lived in a world of his own, today with treatment, the love and support of friends and the grace of God, our boy, Max, is enjoying life as a toddler should. We have a long way to go, but we are grateful for God's grace and the progress we have witnessed.

Your financial support, however large or small, is helping change the lives and future of thousands of kids. I may have been the one running, but WE were making a difference for the cause of autism. Pam and I are extremely grateful to each of you for your continued prayers and support of our little boy. The bible says that "he who refreshes others will himself be refreshed...", you have certainly refreshed us and we pray that God in His grace will in turn refresh you. I will keep on praying, continue running and continue believing that God is not done working in and through the life of our son. If you do not mind I would love to keep you informed of future races, and as always please feel no obligation to contribute, but please do keep the prayers coming. We love you and thank God for you. God Bless You.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

A Real Man

This week has been absolutely crazy. Trying to catch up from being gone has been nuts and in the midst of all that striving to get ready for this weekend's teaching has been challenging as well. This weekend in our G-3 series we will be dealing with men and talking about stewarding our roles as husbands. I have enjoyed studying, reading, praying and meditating over this topic. I feel as though God has really been exposing my heart to certain areas of deficiencies as well as showing areas of His grace and glory at work in different areas of my life. I am praying that God will speak thru me this weekend and that men are ready and willing to receive what He has for them.

A verse that God has really used this week to shape my heart, meditation and preparation for this weekend is 1 Corinthians 16:13...
"Be watchful, stand firm in faith, act like men, be strong. Let all that you do be done in love."

Man, I have been meditating on that verse all week long. I want to live like a real man, I want to be a man who stands firm in his faith and does everything out of love for Christ and genuine love for others. When I think about my precious, beautiful, amazing wife and my two precious kids, I can't help but believe that they don't deserve anything less. My wife and kids deserve a REAL MAN for a husband and a father and sure the world has polluted what a real man is, but the Scriptures are clear...a real man looks lives and loves like Jesus.

That's my prayer...God cause my heart to live and love like your Son. Grow me in every way, shape and form to live and act like a REAL MAN. May I abide in you and may my wife and kids benefit from the overflow of who You are and what You are doing in my life.

Monday, August 3, 2009

Week in Review

Extremely thankful for the time away with my family. The vacation could have not come at a better time and even though I am seriously going to pay for it this week, it was well worth it. Our time in Deepcreek, Maryland was absolutely enjoyable. So grateful to our friends, Kelly and John for opening up their home and making it possible for us to get away. The kids had a blast. It was awesome to see Max and Emi on the tube, and for their first plane ride they did amazing.

White water rafting, tubing, knee boarding, laser tag, we had a full week of fun. My body is so sore, but my spirit and mind feel extremely refreshed. I am grateful for a wonderful family and "super friends" that I get the blessing to do life with.

God truly spoke to me during this time away and I am still processing all that I believe He has revealed, but one thing is for sure, this fall is going to be quite a ride. I am glad that today is Fast-Forward, Summit's church wide prayer and fasting day, because it gives me yet another opportunity to pray and reflect on what I believe the Lord has spoken to me about. What I believe at this point is that there are going to be significant strides in my family, in Summit and in my personal call. I pray that my faith will be ready for the challenge and my heart willing to make the needed sacrifices.

This morning during my quiet time with the Lord, I read this verse which I thought was extremely appropriate...
"Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord." Psalm 27:14

So I have committed to actively wait for the Lord to reveal the next steps and have asked Him to continue to mold my heart to say yes. The journey is worth it and the view of His glory as we engage fully in God's activity is always life changing. May your waiting lead to engagement. Just a rambling...God Bless You!