Wednesday, October 27, 2004

new blogger

we will try this again. Dave T. is a good friend who has been on the journey for a while. Great head on his shoulders, awesome sense of humor and wonderful wife and daughter!


Sunday, October 24, 2004

thoughts from the week

What a great gathering today.

Batman came to visit. We did our promo for the next sermon series. And Nate did a superior job. I am most pleased that there are even amounts of people in each gathering. I like it.

Core focus is going on. I did not go. I am a slacker. So I spent time with the Boo and carved some pumpkins.

I never see anyone I know at Meijers; until tonight. I saw Wade and Michelle & their new baby. It seems like alot of couples I know right is having children. Makes me think, I know what everyone was doing march of 2004.

Anyway, I have been thinking about this whole post modern time. I had a conversation about this with a friend of mine last week and he shed some light on it. We were bantering about the whole movement. He said something like we can never forget where we come from.

Which made me think about some things. I think as post modern christians we also get arrogant about what we are doing. We are so quick to comment about how the church is not doing things "right". How they do not know what they are doing. Blah blah blah.

I have issues with the organized church. But please do not mistake those issues. The church has been seeing people come to know Christ for a long time. And probably will continue to see people come to know Christ. Just because we drink flavored coffees and dress down at church, does not mean we are any better. I have been a believer for 21 years. In that period of time, I have seen swings in the church. For example, the rise and fall of choirs in youth ministry, the promise keepers movement, Willow Creek and the seek driven model just to name a couple. With each swing, leaders have said this is the "right" way. And yet, there is a new "way" every time we turn around.

I know that the gospel is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow. I think the way we present it was be relevant to the society at hand. In addition, I think we cannot point fingers and create dissention because we think we are "doing it right".

I am not sure where I am going in this thought. It has been on my heart and thought I need to start working it out.

More later

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Do it; DO IT

Famous quote from Ben Stiller.

When you get a chance, check out quiet rider's latest blog. He is speaking from the heart and has something stirring there!

I am reminded of a quote I hear one of our leaders at Watermark FREQUENTLY say, "They just don't get it." I really want to spend the rest of my life trying to figure out what that means. I want to make a life commitment to "getting it" on multiple levels. Prayer, worship, serving, reading, communicating, studying.....I am not sure if I will ever really get it.

Parent teacher conferences coming it. CAN YOU BELIEVE THAT? Oh my goodness....Time is flying.

that's all for now.

From the bridge,

Sunday, October 17, 2004

2 gatherings day

WOW. What an awesome time today. We start 2 gatherings today. Very pleased with the turn out. It was great. Roach did a great job; the band sounded great; (it was good to see the rhythm master back in action-after the new baby and all); even though Deurty stuggled all week - it paid off!

Most of all, I had a great day with Becca. She was all geeked because she, her mom and stepdad carved pumpkins this weekend. Her mom found these really cool templates to carve by. So today, we did carmelled apples. That was fun. The Thompsons were the benefactors of that. It brought great joy to Becca to bring those over to their house.

Speaking of life groups, Gooch's parents were in from the east side. I am enjoying getting to know them. They are rich with stories. I cannot wait to hear more "Gooch" related stories. Anyway, we played Rook with them and the Johnsons. That was fun. Great time of conversation and food.

I am thinking about dedicating my new home. It is a concern of mine to really pray over the place where Becca and I will hang out hat.

Well, tomorrow is another day and an exciting week ahead.


Friday, October 15, 2004


It was busy yesterday.

Morning: Went to Holland to meet with a gentlemen to discuss some work. I missed a group meeting w/N8 and Jayz. Suck. I received some "positive" feedback over that.

Lunch: D&W and Jeff Johnson. Beat into the floor. Felt great.

Afternoon: Worked at home. boxes and stuff. But the cable is hooked up. No phone yet which sucks.

Dinner: Nothing special there.

evening: 1st accountibility group meeting at my house - Gooch and Jeff. I live for these conversations. We really dig into it. It is great to connect with these guys, hear whats going on and pray.

Last night: work.

That was a packed day. Now I am headed into GH to take care of business.

Out for a while

Tuesday, October 12, 2004

the move is nearly complete

WOW. what a weekend...

I finished making the necessary phone calls to get all things set up at our new duplex. It seems as if it is never ending. But it is coming to a close.

Have I mentioned how much I hate technical difficulties? Yesterday was a great gathering except for technical things that went haywire. Three things in particular. 1. our first flash did not work. Don't know why but the colors were all inverted so you could not see what was happening. 2. DVD shut down. We shut one of the DVD's off too soon. AARRGGHH! and 3. The last video was turned on too soon. That was a calling error on my part. AAHHHH!!!! I hate it. I hate because it always causes people to get ripped out worship. As one of the guys said yesterday - the errors made it feel like we were stuttering along. We will get better.

Becca had a great time at Moto last night. Moto is our 5th - 8th grade student ministry. Let me tell you how old it makes me feel.

Well, I need to get back to work.

From the tower looking high over the Grand River,

Monday, October 11, 2004

Programming day

Well, another great day! We have such a great programming team. IT is always great to hear what they are thinking! We had several missing today. You know who you are....we missing you!!!

We had a great gathering yesterday. Other than a couple technical issues, we had a great birthday party.

Did I mention I love my life group? My life group is great. I got in trouble last night for not incorporating them into my move. Now, let me say. I really appreciate that. I should have relied on them more. Which just brings an interesting point. I do have a problem with that. I can respond to people. But asking for help and relying on people is very difficult for me. I will have to get back to you on that. But, they are great because they support and love and pray and help and and them I say thank you for not giving up on me!

Tonight, my daughter, Becca, is joining Moto. Moto is our church's 5th thru 8th grade student ministry. I had great conversation about this with Becca's mom. She is so supportive of this and so am I. Sarah and I have been committed to several things. School, church, extra curricular activities. We discuss them and evaluate them. This has made for a well rounded experience for Becca. We are also committed to family time.

Communciation is the key. Putting the child's interest ahead of our own. It has been hard work. It should be hard work to raise a family.

Anyway, gotta go get the Boo. She needs to get her homework done before she can go.

Becca's dad

Tuesday, October 05, 2004

new bloggers added

and another ones down and anothers ones down and another one bites the dust.

I met Dave Drury at SLWC in Spring Lake - the connections guy. I have enjoyed the limited access I have had with him and I just found out he is a blogger.

And a new website added - Vinmark Productions!


big bridge inspection

Tomorrow. I have not been thru one but I am on all day tomorrow, so I will get to experience one. Until then, all must be ship shape. I am afraid to even pass gas up here right now. Anyway, we will be hiding the trolls until everyone is gone.

Were you at the gathering last weekend? Man, I really enoyed it. I am looking forward to the next one. I think that is a reoccuring pattern. I really enjoy being there.

And speaking of enjoying, I spent some time this weekend with Dr. and Mrs. Mojito. I know this will shock you but there was fire, hotdogs, smores and fireworks involved. We had great conversation catching up. The Dr. has been mentoring me with some "ministerial" stuff in my life. And they live it out. Mrs. Mojito always makes Becca and I feel loved and accepted. Enough sucking up to them. Anyway - a little shout out to dr. & mrs. mojito!

Well, that's what's new! Oh wait, i have friend who is close to family that needs some special prayer support. You see, family has a child who recently had a bad accident involving a horse. Lots of left out details I realize, but please pray for the child and family.

Ta ta for now,
the moving man

Saturday, October 02, 2004

Dave Matthews Band rocks

What can i say? I like Dave Matthews. I stumbled across the cd Crash the other day. Hadn't heard it in a while. Just a warning -- this is a long blog. Get a drink and snack.

It is time to start sharing about a ministry idea. Let me tell you where it started and where we are at today. Before Watermark was being formed, God had already started to deal with my heart and my good friend Jeff Johnson's heart. Jeff (and Kathy) and I have been thru some pretty amazing things. And it is this relationship that God has chosen to bless. Jeff and I were talking the other night about how God has really blessed our friendship. To Him be the glory. But as time went on, God started to deal with us on another level. Jeff and I were sensing that God was trying to teach us something.

Because of the work I used to do, I had started to develop philosophies our selling. One of the major points is that people buy from people. Relationship is critical to closing the deal. Education, communicate, and develop the relationship. Several of the salesmen who may be reading this know I would drone on and on about this.

This point is true in different aspects of life. This is the take away. People will come to know Christ because people around them connect, education and develop the friendship. We are the only Christ some people will ever see. This was a spear head for what we felt God was strongly pointing out to us. So jeff and I would dream and talk about what that would look like.

We decided to take this a little more seriously. We went on a mini-retreat. We camped out. tents, fire, grilling, worship music, confession, prayer. IT WAS AMAZING. I cannot remember how it all fell together, but that night was a turning point. We would discuss how incredible it would be to provide a non-threating environment for people to come to know Christ thru relationships with others. We started dreaming about a fire, food, music and message. And the idea of Camp Fire Ministries (CFM) was born.

About the same time, Jeff and his daughter, Lela, built a fire pit in their back yard. This has been a great starting point for lives being changed thru prayer, music, sharing and fire. The Johnson's have a great spot in their back yard where God has moved in many lives. Time and time again, we would get together and light a fire. Before you know it, people would just drop by. People who need to talk and pray and be encouraged. I am thankful to God that I have been there for many great times and thankful that He has given this vision to Jeff and I. I have heard some say, "you guys just get together, goof off and waste time back there". To those individuals I say, I forgive you for saying that. Because that is the farthest thing from the truth. Many lives have been changed because God met us there.

Then, a new concept in church came into our lives - Watermark. We would listen to Steve drone on (just kidding steve) about relationships, community, gatherings, post modern, opportunities to serve, spending life together, etc. This just seemed too ironic. God was confirming in our minds that we were on the right path. I can speak for myself on this - God released me from the "organized church" mentality and allowed me to experience Christ far differently....I could that that paragraph and write for awhile. Maybe later. This was so timely for me because it just solidified what God was saying all along.

So we prayed - collectively, separately, with others. We have drawn up ideas. What does this look like? I know this a long blog. But it is on my heart.

Jeff started doing speaking engagements. 1st Priority, FCA, church groups, youth groups. God provided and is still providing opportunites for him to challenge youth and adults for the cause of Christ. He is also active in the Youth Pastors network here in GH. This provides an opportunity to pour into the lives of youth pastors in this area.

The vision started to take shape. We have a burden for the next generation and a passion for local ministry. These two elements are the foundation for CFM. The local church is the hub for continuing ministry - outreach, evangelism, global, local. And the next generation is the church of tomorrow. That is where we are at. Melting these two areas together.

What does it look like? Well, in three areas. First, our gatherings. They will involve fire, food, worship and message. Simple. Provide an opportunity for people to connect with people. These times will be driven for outreach and connection. Secondly, we are intentional about helping the next generation. What the? By working with 1st Priority, we find a network of people who need direction, prayer, encouragement, accountiblity and connection. Opportunities to do leadership development. We are committed to using that conduit - for youth pastors, youth workers, youth themselves. Again, this will play out in many different ways - but using mini-retreats with fire, food, music and message. Thirdly, we are commited to worship development. There are many churches struggling with worship and technology. We are going to provide a service of evaluation and education for churches who are really looking into worship and technology. This will also play out in several different ways. One way will be working with a church from beginning to end and helping them develop a plan of attack.

Where are we at? we have started the formal creation of CFM. We have prayed about trustees to help govern the ministry and that is in place. Over the next year, we will be ratching up a notch and having some gathering times. We are looking for people to partner with us -- pray mostly; and get involved with our gatherings. We are not looking for financial support. We believe that God will work that out.

Wow. I will expand more as time goes on. This has been a dream, turned vision for about 4 years now. Like I mentioned earlier, we have seen success in the times we have already had. We are now just becoming more intentional about it.

We will be gathering a prayer team. If your interested, see Jeff or I. We would love to talk to you about it.

Thanks for your time.