Thursday, May 27, 2010

New Life

Last weekend we celebrated! We shouted out in joy! We lowered people down into the waters of baptism. They died. They rose again into a new life in Jesus.
This is what we do as followers of Jesus - build relationships with people with the hope and faith that they will one day build a relationship with God through giving their lives to Jesus.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Great Quote

Don't feel sorry for yourself for the sacrifices you are making. Sacrifices are privileges. You don't have to. You get to. And if you forget that, a sense of entitlement will rob you of the title to your calling.

- Chuck Swindoll at Innovate Church Conference

Thursday, May 20, 2010

12 Indicators

I read this from Dave Ferguson...12 Indicators that Leadership Is Lacking

1. I wait for someone to tell me what to do rather than taking the initiative myself.
2. I spend too much time talking about how things should be different.
3. I blame the context, surroundings, or other people for my current situation.
4. I am more concerned about being cool or accepted than doing the right thing.
5. I seek consensus rather than casting vision for a preferable future.
6. I am not taking any significant risks.
7. I accept the status quo as the way it's always been and always will be.
8. I start protecting my reputation instead of opening myself up to opposition.
9. I procrastinate to avoid making a tough call.
10. I talk to others about the problem rather than taking it to the person responsible.
11. I don't feel my butt is on the line for anything significant.
12. I ask for way too many opinions before taking action.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Productive Work

I was reading 1 Thessalonians 1 this morning and I spent some time on verse 3 - "We continually remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ." I love that!

I think of all the ways in which I want to work productively everyday. As I read Paul's words I am reminded of what should lead us...
Work produced by faith
Labor prompted by love
Endurance inspired by hope

What would happen if all of us approached our work with this attitude?

The result would be the same as it was for the Thessalonians - "your faith in God has become known everywhere."

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Love Is

Love never gives up.
Love cares more for others than for self.
Love doesn't want what it doesn't have.
Love doesn't strut,
Doesn't have a swelled head,
Doesn't force itself on others,
Isn't always "me first,"
Doesn't fly off the handle,
Doesn't keep score of the sins of others,
Doesn't revel when others grovel,
Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth,
Puts up with anything,
Trusts God always,
Always looks for the best,
Never looks back,
But keeps going to the end.
Love never dies.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010


My family is extremely important to me. My relationship with Kelli is second only to my relationship with my heavenly Father. Every day I give God thanks for Kelli, Caleb, and Abby. Because of my strong commitment to my family, I dedicate my time and my attention to them like no one else. However, in the midst of that, I am one of the pastors at Charter Oak Church. And thanks to you I was reminded that I am also connected to a much larger family called our church.

As most of you probably know my grandfather passed away the week before Easter. I flew down to South Carolina in the middle of Holy Week (the busiest week of my year). I have to tell you that I felt incredibly encouraged and lifted up by your words, your cards, and your hugs. I felt like you lifted me up on to your spiritual shoulders and you carried me through by the power of the Holy Spirit. I intellectually know that as followers of Jesus we are all brothers and sisters – we are family. But to be honest with you, it was so good to be able to live into it. Thank you.

Thank you for being my spiritual family. But more importantly thank you for being our church’s spiritual family. Every week I see how people love each other by being a brother or sister in Christ to them. I always say I am one of the pastors at Charter Oak Church; it’s even the title of my blog ( I say I am one of the pastors because I believe God’s design is that we are all pastors. If one of my kids gets hurt, Kelli doesn’t say, “you are the pastor, you take care of this.” If someone in our congregation is sick, if there is a death, if there is celebration of 65 years of marriage all of us are there, all of us pray, all of us mourn, all of us rejoice. Why? Because we are family, we are all a part of the family of God.

When I flew to South Carolina I saw family I had not seen in a long time. We all said we shouldn’t let that happen. As I lived in that moment I thought of our church family. As spring blossoms and the weather turns nice, it is very easy to “skip” worship. When summer hits full stride, it’s even easier. Hebrews 10:25 says, “Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.” I want you to know that I love you. I want to love God with you. I want to love each other with you. I want to love the world with you. You are my family. Let’s be the family of God called Charter Oak Church together.

Getting Things Done

I receive an email every so often from David Allen over at Getting Things Done (GTD). Yesterday I received one of those emails. Here's a section of it...

"Let's get something really clear: success doesn't come from getting organized—it comes from following your heart. Or your intuition. Or the seat of your pants. Or your gut. (Pick the words you like or that you're not allergic to.)"

Proverbs 3:5 says, "Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding."

I love being organized. I get more done when I am organized that I do when there is a mess on my desk and nothing scheduled on my calendar. It's why I get the emails from David Allen.

He is correct when he writes that success doesn't come from getting organized. But according to Proverbs it doesn't come from following your heart, it comes from trusting God with your heart.

Proverbs 5:6 goes on to say, "in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight."

Me being organized doesn't set me on the right path, trusting God and acknowledging Him does. I love being organized and GTD helps me a great deal, but I have to remember it's a tool that helps me to get on God's agenda.