Category Archives: Spirituality

Messy Stories

Faith is a never ending messy story of how we live out our relationship with God.

Tonight, I taught a class on how to live your life on mission, as part of our joining our church. Last week was part one. Tonight, was part two and we talked a lot about our faith story.

I shared with the class my faith story and how my story hasn’t ended. I told them that I still don’t have it all together. I still don’t have all the answers.

One of things I look forward to most is hearing everyone that’s in the class share their story with each other. They share in small groups where God has brought them from and what God is doing in their lives right now.

It’s amazing to hear God at work in people’s lives. At work in families. At work in messy situations.

I was reminded last night of how messy our journey is. I was reminded of a few quotes from “Messy Spirituality” by Mike Yaconelli

“Spirituality isn’t about being finished and perfect; spirituality is about trusting God in our unfinishedness.”

“…it turns out that what disqualifies you and me from “spirituality” – the mess of our lives and our crippledness – is what most qualifies us to be chosen by Jesus… Some of us actually believe that until we choose the correct way to live, we aren’t chooseable, that until we clean up the mess, Jesus won’t have anything to do with us. The opposite is true.Until we admit we are a mess, Jesus won’t have anything to do with us.”

The power of our story is that our story is a beautiful mess. A mess that is filled with real people, real situations, and real questions. A mess that is beautiful because it is filled with real people, real situations, and real faith.

As we talked tonight, I was reminded of how messy my faith journey has been…and of how it’s not missed yet.

I’m so thankful for my journey and where God has led me too.

I’m so thankful for the church I am in that allows people to lead a beautifully messy journey as they discover how to follow Jesus.

I Refuse

I refuse to be a part of this kingdom for I serve another King and another Kingdom.

I refuse to dream small dreams for I believe in the impossible.

I refuse to accept the status quo for I believe in hope and truth.

I refuse to hate those who hate me even when it’s convenient for I believe in love.

I refuse to be a part of this kingdom for I serve another King and another Kingdom.

I refuse to give in to cheap thrills and low living for I believe in joy and peace.

I refuse to bow to my insecurities and fears for I believe in my Creator and my God.

I refuse to trust my pride for I believe in self-control.

I refuse to sit by while others have their homes, souls, and lives destroyed for I believe in redemption.

I refuse to be a part of this kingdom for I serve another King and another Kingdom.

I refuse to buy, sell, and trade people for things, position, and stuff for I believe in the Image of God.

I refuse to be part of the system that holds others down and exalts the good enoughs, the rich enoughs, and the already got its…for I am part of a different system that lifts up the weak, the battered, and the naked.

I refuse to be a part of this kingdom for I serve another King and another Kingdom.

Getting Busy and Cheating

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Being busy always makes life more complicated.

No matter if it’s extra hours at work, or more than usual amount homework being busy tends give us bad attitudes, bad priorities, and bad habits.

When I am busy I start to procrastinate on the important things of life for what seems important in the immediate. When I am busy I start to pull away from what really matters to spend time on what is fleeting.

When I am busy I start to focus on to do list’s rather than on people.

When I am busy I forget. When I am busy I ignore. When I am busy I miss out.

It’s not that all the things I am doing that make me busy are bad, in fact, many of them are noble and good things. But many times in my hectic schedules and over worked life I forget what really matters.

Getting good grades is important, but not at the cost of loving others or loving God.

Working out everyday is important, but not at the cost of spending time with my wife.

Working hard is important, but not at the cost of my soul.

I don’t want to lose my wife, my love, and soul in the midst of my busy life. I refuse to allow schedules, due dates, and time restrictions to rob me of what matters most!

I guess…I’d rather cheat on work, school, and fitness than my wife, my God, and my soul.

Hiding With The Baggage

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There’s a story in 1 Samuel.

It’s a story about when Saul is announced as King of Israel.

When he’s announced…they can’t find him. He’s hiding among the baggage.

The first king of Israel. He stood head and shoulder above every other man in Israel. He was a giant in his own right.

But he was hiding.

Leaders who start off hiding never really come out from behind the baggage.

Whether its  hiding among them baggage, consulting witches, or offering sacrifices when he wasn’t supposed to, Saul couldn’t seem to get away from the baggage of his insecurities and fears.

When are leader is controlled by insecurity and fear, they will always hide because of their fears and insecurities. It even looks like leadership sometimes. They will make decisons, people will follow them…but all along fear and insecurity will run their lives.

Get rid of the baggage!

Get rid of the fear and insecurity!

Stop hiding! Embrace transparency!

The sooner we stop hiding, the sooner our lives begin to find fulfillment.

Shut Up!

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Shut up!

Now.

No.

Really, you probably need to.

I talk to much. I do a lot of mind -talking. I plan constantly, even right now as I write this, I’m still thinking about what else I need to do.

It happens when I pray. It happens when I read the Bible, or when I read books.

I like the idea of shutting up. I know I need to stop and be still.

But it’s hard work being still.

Shut up.

Do it! Stop waiting for God to hold you by the hand.

Shut up, before he makes you shut up.

He’s got something to speak with you about…but, in our busyness and multitasking we’ve cut our relationship with God down to what we have to say to him.

True spirituality is more listening than speaking.

More quiet than noise.

More still than busy.

Maybe then he’ll start speaking…

Day 3 Review

What an amazing 3 days we have had so far!

It was so great to be able to watch our Kids Club (VBS) team run their program yesterday! They did awesome! About 60-70 kids have come for the last 2 days and it just keeps getting bigger and better!

We also got SOAKED yesterday! We were on our way to a local park to play some football (soccer) and to invite students out to our evening youth drop in center. It was amazing to see our kids smiling and being positive even while being wet, cold, and far from our ‘home base’.

Sometimes we take for granted all the things we have in life and all the people who deeply love us (like our parents). Over the last 24 hours we’ve been reminded how much our parents and God loves us. As we were coming in soaked from being outside those 60-70 kids were trying to figure out how they were going to get home.

9 year olds were taking care of 5 year olds.

Kids walking home in the pouring rain, with no idea if their parents are home.

Something’s in life, like this, pull at your heart deeply.

No 5 year old needs to be out of the street by themselves.

No 9 year old needs to be responsible for his 5 year old brother.

It’s gotta change!

May we be the change!

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May We…

I have has lots of people ask what we will be doing in Belfast.

While we are in Belfast, we will be working with the Rock Community Church and Go Kids. Rev. Jonny Caldwell is the director and pastor of these two amazing works in the heart of Belfast.

I have known Jonny and his wife for 5 years. They have gathered around them an amazing team of servants, who work full/part time jobs as well as being a vital part of the work being done in Belfast.

We will primarly be working on The Shankill Road, which was at one point one of the most dangerous streets in Europe. But through prayer and the work of groups like Go Kids, peace and hope is being brought to Belfast.

We are going over to Belfast to, first, serve. We desire to assist Go Kids and The Rock Community team in anyway we can. We will be a part of a kids VBS program, a football camp, a hip hop dance class, and street ministry.

We are sooo excited to watch God work as we serve.

May Jesus be seen in our eyes and our hands.

May we have courage to live boldly and humbly.