Monday, July 29, 2013


So, I thought about writing a post about this song, but rather than doing that, I thought I would just let you listen to it and see what you thought.  He claims its just about QVC, but you make your own decision. 

I found the song rather challenging and makes you really think.

To hear more from Kevin, check out

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Perfect People

I've been a huge fan of Donald Miller for quite some time.  I thought his post today was spot on and just had to share.

A novelist I respect named James Scott Bell gave some writing advice I think applies to more than just fiction. In his book Conflict and Suspense he says, “Perfect people are not interesting to us. We need to see flaws in the characters as well as strengths.”

He’s talking about building conflict into a story, of course, but I think there’s something true about this idea in life, too.

Read the rest of Don's Blog Here

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Just to be with you

I was listening to one of my favorite worship artists yesterday and I came across this song.  I have heard it a bunch, but I forgot about it.  It just really spoke to me again.

Paul has such a way of sharing his heart with people.  I hope you enjoyed it.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Relationships and Communication

As I think about the whole concept of Small Groups, I have found that they can be a great tool for teaching people how to have relationships with one another.  Maybe it is just me, but I have found a lot of people choose to go about life without really developing or learning how to develop relationships with one another. 

As I contemplate the concept, I wonder if the two main reasons people don't know how to build relationships is because one, they are scared to be real with someone or two, they believe a good relationship should be free of conflict.

I can't speak for other cultures, but I find there are a lot of people within the church that are scared to be real with people.  Many try to come in, make it to their seats, enjoy the show/sermon and leave without having to really have a conversation with anyone.  And we have allowed it.  As a good friend put it, "we have boiled down the church to a concert and a lecture."  I think that is sad.   What happened to the church that was the center of the community?  What happened to the church that brought people together to share a meal and enjoy life together?  What happened to the church that really made a difference in the life of those around it?  We have let people become spectators in a life that is full contact. 

I know there are people who look for churches that allow them to just do their thing.  I can get that.  I also have found though, that very seldom do you come across someone who won't talk to you when you ask them questions about themselves.  People have stories.  People want to share their stories.  Sometimes however, they are scared because they can tell you don't really care to hear their story.  Through Small Groups, I have found that it creates an atmosphere where people realize they can share their story, they can develop relationships, they can be free to be who they are, and hopefully benefit from the freedom God offers us when we are real.

The second reason I found is that people believe relationships need to be conflict free and if they are not, then you remove yourself from that relationship.  I certainly know I have a great relationship with my wife and it certainly isn't conflict free.  One thing I have learned through my marriage is that it is often through those conflicts that we can learn something new about ourselves and we are presented with the opportunity for growth. I think it is our responsibility to accept that opportunity and not run from it. 

I can guarantee there will be conflict within Small Groups.  They may not always be large conflicts, but it is through the conflicts, differences of opinion and different views that we are able to look at something a little different and can examine ourselves.  I don't know how many times recently I have been presented with a bit of information that conflicted with what I was taught or what I had "known" to be true.  I could certainly have just ignored them or tried to argue my side, but sometimes examining the new information would shed light on a subject that I had misunderstood.

I think that if we can find a way to help people be real with one another and realize that conflict is not bad then we can move forward with helping people develop relationships that are meaningful and overall will help people see more of who God is and what He has given to us.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Bible Study vs Small Group

As I take a journey into heading up the Small Group ministry at our church, I find it interesting how many equate Small Groups with Bible Studies.  While they are somewhat similar, personally I find a big difference in the two.

Maybe it's just me, but I seldom have really gotten anything out of a Bible Study.  It's not that the Bible doesn't have anything to offer nor that the there isn't content to learn, but I find that most Bible Studies come out of a book that is so focused on the Bible that it lacks any deep applicable material. 

I know there are some studies out there that have changed peoples lives.  I also know there are some really great Bible Study materials out there that do help facilitate a deeper relationship with God.  On the other hand, most of the ones I have participated in have come across very shallow and have left me with very little to think about.

My experience with Small Groups could easily be different from that of many others.  I have had several positive experiences and have seen them become a great tool in connection people to each other and connecting people to God.

One of the main differences, I believe, between a Small Group and a Bible Study is that the meetings don't always have to consist of a "study."  Sometimes people just need to be people have learn to develop relationships with one another. 

One of the biggest connection points in several of the small groups I have been in, is a basic "ice breaker," we do a lot of weeks that asks people to share a good thing and something not so good in their lives that has happened since the last meeting.  It may sound simple, but allowing people to share something about themselves really allows people the opportunity to be open. 

Another aspect of small groups that varies from a lot of Bible Studies is that they are very relationally based.  When a small group is going well, the people in the group connect with each other on different levels through the week and friendships are created, many of which may not have been established otherwise.  Those relationships allow people to have discussions about their lives, but also opens people up to discussing God and who He is.

Two other pieces, somewhat go hand in hand, that I believe are important and vary from Bible Studies, is the aspect of serving others together and being there for the other people in the group.  I can look back at my life and see several instances where without our small group, life would have been significantly more challenging.  When a group serves together they grow in a way that can seem impossible from the outside. Serving others puts us in a position to reflect Christ to other people.  Sometimes, those that you are serving will be within the group.  It is during those times people will know you truly care.  I can only imagine how many needs are not met by a church, simply because no one knows about them.  When you develop relationships with each other as a group, needs can be made known and needs can be met. 

Honestly, there is so much more to a Small Group than what I listed.  It's not about doing a once a week Bible Study together, but rather it's about doing life together.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013


As I have driven to work the past few days I've heard Chuck Swindoll give a series of sermons on hope. The more I have listened the the more I began to realize the importance of hope and how it really impacts our lives.  When I started thinking about the concept of hope I began to reflect and observe, throughout my day, on it.  Looking at recent events in my life and things that seem like obstacles, I can easily see how the hope that we have really shapes the life that we live.

I think different areas of my life right now where it would be easy to lose hope or areas where it seems there is no hope.  Some of these areas it is easier to trust God and know that there is hope, while others you almost have to just sit back and wait as there seems very little chance that things will ever change. I can only imagine what life is like for those who don't believe they have a hope in God and that God will guide them down the path to where He wants them to go.  The lack of hope can be devastating.

I've had several different situations recently where God has shown His face and provided a light for me to see the hope that I have in Him. On the other side, I have also had a few situations where the hope I had seems to be all but lost.  I am not saying that I have lost my hope in God by any means, rather I wonder if sometimes we mistakenly put our hope in people and things rather than God.  We hope that having something will change our lives; we hope that people will change; we hope that money will make our lives easier.  I know God can do each of these things, but maybe our focus is in the wrong place to begin with.

I don't really know if this makes sense or not, but it is worth taking the time to examine our lives to find where we are placing hope and if maybe we have falsely placed hope in the wrong places rather than just realizing our hope is in God.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

When Death Dies

I know this isn't on topic with yesterdays post by any means, but I have fell in love with this song and their amazing musicianship.  I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.

Monday, July 1, 2013


For the last couple years I have really struggled with a lot of the ritualistic things people do in churches.  I am very much an advocate for keeping meaning behind what we do in a church service and have found many churches to grab hold of many of these religious rituals and negate the meaning behind them.  The idea of keeping these rituals in the service became quite an issue for me.  I very much had an issue being a part of any service in which the church routinely participated in the same ritual, especially when it seemed to lack any real importance in the lives of those who were participating.

Recently, as I was listening to a gentleman speak, it clicked with me.  For some people, these rituals are part of their worship and connection with other believers.  For years, music has been a vital role in my communal worship with others, while I know for others music isn't as significant a part.  What I have come to realize is that many people find their communal worship in different parts of the service. For some it comes in the music, the sermon, in serving, fellowship, rituals, or may I even say the announcements. 

Understanding that people worship in different parts of the service widens the spectrum of view of worship.  While rituals may be a hang up for me, for others these rituals may be a reminder and remembrance of when they really connected with God in their past and a point of connection with Him each week.  In the same fashion, serving, listening to the word, or singing may be a way someone else feels connected with God and are able to be set free from the distractions of the world. 

I've got a lot on my mind lately and I hope to delve more into the idea of communal worship and it's role in connecting believers to one another, but we shall see.