I am in the second day of my "staycation". I have come to the realization that being on vacation but going nowhere stinks. O well, I do like the mental break it affords but I find myself catching up on a lot of personal things I put off. I'm sure I'll write some more here later. There are also a lot of behind the scenes things going on right now that are really "developing" my Faith. I will hopefully get to touch base with some old friends this week and spend time with my family this weekend. Thanks for stopping by, sorry there's nothing here today, but I'm sure the best is yet to come.
I'm not sure why, but this video really makes me feel good. An excellent drummer "covering" the best drummer in the world "Robert Sweet" in a Christmas song I really like. I know my wife will be proud of me. She is a Christmas fanatic. Jamie will also get a kick out of this as well.
Glen Covers Winter Wonderland Stryper Style
Glen Covers Winter Wonderland Stryper Style
Have you ever had a song that you don't want in your head, IN YOUR HEAD. The song "When I Think of You" by Janet Jackson has been running through my mind throughout the day. It takes me back to my Junior High days as a Boiling Springs Bulldog. Anyway, the reason I thought of the song in the first place was for the title itself. Over the past few weeks I have been so thankful for those who surround me and share the same vision for teens. I was reminded of this verse: Ephesians 1:3-6
"3 Every time I think of you, I give thanks to my God. 4 Whenever I pray, I make my requests for all of you with joy, 5 for you have been my partners in spreading the Good News about Christ from the time you first heard it until now. 6 And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns."
There is no way I could list everyone I am thankful for, for fear of leaving someone out. I will say I encountered an awesome church led Converge service at church last night. Our high school and college students shared about what God did through them during our retreat in Tennessee. Can you believe we were actually doing Jumping Jacks in church and we're not even pentecostal. LOL These teens were really with the leaders and didn't hold back on things they were dealing with, more importantly they didn't hesitate to give them to God.
One highlight for me was to see our students recreate the "Lifehouse - Everything" skit that has been receiving so many hits on youtube. The drama is powerful in itself but to know what the actors are going through personally makes is so much stronger. Also, we posted notes from our sessions all over the back wall of the church and while walking by them, I began to cry as I saw them pour out their lives in the sessions. To each student and leader who went on the trip, thank you for ministering to me. Finally, we had a great middle school fellowship afterwards at the Griffith's home. I see SO MUCH potential when i look at them. Right now they are patient and faithful. God is going to reward them in due time. Our future looks really bright. If you have a second, please for our teens, leaders and church.
This week has been quite a ride for me. When Jesus tells us in John 10:10, "the thief comes to kill and destroy but I have come that you may have life to the full" I have always choked on the word "full". Prosperity preachers would make you think that Jesus is talking about wealth and earthly trash. I have come to learn as a Christian I experience good and bad like anyone else. Matthew 5:45 talks about how God causes it to rain on the just and the unjust. I take this to mean that good and bad happen to believers and non-believers, however as a Christian God gives me the means to get through it and here lately it seems the rain falls a little harder. In one week I have returned from an awesome retreat, spent time with great people at church, been given the opportunity to preach last week and this Sunday, invited to preach at an inner-city youth revival tonight, and see our youth do the Lifehouse "Everything" skit Sunday night. In the same week my truck died which forced me to get another one, a letter arrived from the IRS challenging my return and I am finding that the buffer between bills and income is becoming very thin. Like I said, good and bad in big waves at the same time.
Please know, I'm not complaining because I was given great perspective this morning when I was told that Mark, one of the reps who works on our ladder truck is not traveling as much now because his wife was diagnosed with Leukemia. Like a punch in the gut I thought it doesn't matter how bad we feel we have it, there is ALWAYS someone who has it worse. Please pray for him. I do know this. For those folks who would say that Jesus is just a crutch to lean on, I would say "ABSOLUTELY". I could not be where I am today, or even be able to blog about it unless I had the steady assurance that God has my back and is in control of everything. I don't know what life is throwing at you today, but take it from a guy that knows God will carry us when we can't carry ourselves. Just let Him. (I'm trying to take my own advice)
Today has been kind of a wash as I settle down from a great week in the mountains with some of the coolest adults and teenagers around. This was a great time for all of us to get out of our daily routines and get our focus back on God and the plan that he has for our lives. There was a lot of time spent in studying the Bible in hopes of finding help for us as we seek to not be perfect, but to hand over control of our lives to God. There were truly some amazing things that happened during the trip, but at this point it is hard to explain some of them. Obviously we had a great time. I would encourage anyone to find a group like this that can become your "second family". I am so grateful to the adult leaders who spent their time and resources making this retreat a success.
I've loaded over 450 photos from the week into my Picasa album. It is true when they say every picture tells a story. For those that attended this trip, prayerfully use some of these pics to "capture" a moment in your life when God was "real" to you. If you are just surfing the pics, then enjoy. Please take a moment to pray for us as we seek to put into "practice" what we learned during the week. Psalm 63:1 Does a great job of illustrating some of what we experienced this week. Take the time to read this encouraging passage. Please leave comments on this blog if there are pictures that really mean a lot to you. If so why?
Mountain Top Experience - Movin' On Up Pictures 2009