I walked into a coffee shop a few moments ago and got a man hug from one of the baristas.
This is the first time I’ve eve been here. It’s a pretty cool place.
Soft chairs. Good espresso. Free wifi.
But I don’t want to come back because of any of this things. I know of other soft seats and other places with good coffee. I have wifi at home.
I will come back because I got a hug. A man hug.
I’ve been here once//but I feel like I belong here.
I’ve known the barista since I moved here almost 2 years ago. I never got hugs back then. But he learned my name. Learned about my job and my wife.
When I came in today we asked me about all those.
I will come back because HE CARES!
I will come back because HE LISTENS!
I will come back because HE HUGS!
That’s how I want my ministry and life to be.
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.
Posted in Christianity, Church, God, Hope, Jesus, Leadership, Ministry, Religion, Soul, Spirituality, youth, youth ministry
Mote pics from the party today!!!
Posted in Christianity, Church, God, Hope, Jesus, Love, Ministry, music, Pictures, youth, youth ministry
Tagged Christianity, mission
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.
Posted in Christianity, Church, God, Hope, Jesus, Love, Prayer, Soul, Spirituality, youth, youth ministry
Tagged Christianity, mission
28 hours from now I will be sitting on a plane with 27 students and 7 adults as we make our way to Belfast, Northern Ireland.
I love Belfast.
If you’ve never been to Belfast, you should go.
Today, my wife and I watched a highlight video of the first time I made my way ‘across the pond’. It was exciting to see familiar faces, but also to dream of what God could do this time.
You may not be familiar with Belfast.
According to Wikipedia:
“Belfast (from the Irish: Béal Feirste meaning “mouth of the sandbars“) is the capital city of Northern Ireland and the seat of devolved government and legislative assembly in Northern Ireland…Belfast has been the capital of Northern Ireland since its establishment in 1921 following the Government of Ireland Act 1920.
Since its emergence as a major city, it had been the scene of various episodes of sectarian conflict between its Roman Catholic and Protestant populations. These opposing groups in this conflict are now often termedrepublican and loyalist respectively, although they are also referred to as ‘nationalist‘ and ‘unionist‘. The most recent example of this is known as the Troubles – a civil conflict that raged from c.1969 to the late 1990s.
Belfast saw some of the worst of the Troubles in Northern Ireland, particularly in the 1970s, with rival paramilitary groups forming on both sides. Bombing, assassination and street violence formed a backdrop to life throughout the Troubles. The Provisional IRA detonated twenty-two bombs, all in a confined area in the city centre in 1972, on what is known as “Bloody Friday“, killing nine people.
Loyalist paramilitaries, the Ulster Volunteer Force (UVF) and Ulster Defence Association (UDA) claimed that the murders they carried out were in retaliation to the PIRA campaign. Most of their victims were Roman Catholic civilians entirely unconnected to the Provisional IRA. A particularly notorious group, based on the Shankill Road in the mid 1970s became known as the Shankill Butchers. In all, over one thousand five hundred people were killed in political violence in the city from 1969 until 2001. Part of the legacy of the Troubles is that both republican and loyalist paramilitary groups in Belfast have become involved in organised crime and racketeering.”
There is much more to be said on the history of Belfast. But 1 thing is for sure, Belfast is in need of love and hope.
Our prayer is that as we serve, speak, love, and play people throughout the Shankill will see hope and love in us.
In our eyes.
In our hugs.
In our laugh.
In our smiles.
Will you pray with us as we leave tomorrow?
Posted in Christianity, Church, God, History, Hope, Jesus, Love, mission, Prayer, Religion, Soul, Spirituality, youth, youth ministry
Tagged Christianity, Missions, Spiritual Growth
(Anyone know who wrote this)
If I talk a lot about God and the Bible and the Church, but I fail to
ask about your needs and then help you, I’m simply making a lot of empty
If I graduate from theological seminary and know all the answers to
questions you’ll never even think of asking, and if I have all the degrees
to prove it and if I say I believe in God with all my heart, and soul
and strength, and claim to have incredible answers to my prayers to show
it, but I fail to take the time to find out where you’re at and what
makes you laugh and why you cry, I’m nothing.
If I sell an extra car and some of my books to raise money for some
poor starving kids somewhere, and if I give my life for God’s service and
burn out after pouring everything I have into the work, but do it all
without ever once thinking about the people, the real hurting people-the
moms and dads and sons and daughters and orphans and widows and the
lonely and hurting-if I pour my life into the Kingdom but forget to make
it relevant to those here on earth, my energy is wasted, and so is my
Here is what love is like–genuine love. God’s kind of love. It’s
patient. It can wait. It helps others, even if they never find out who did
it. Love doesn’t look for greener pastures or dream of how things could
be better if I just got rid of all my current commitments. Love doesn’t
boast. It doesn’t try to build itself up to be something it isn’t. Love
doesn’t act in a loose, immoral way. It doesn’t seek to take, but it
willingly gives. Love doesn’t lose its cool. It doesn’t turn on and off.
Love doesn’t think about how bad the other person is, and certainly
doesn’t think of how it could get back at someone. Love is grieved deeply
(as God is) over the evil in this world, but it rejoices over truth.
Love comes and sits with you when you’re feeling down and finds out
what is wrong. It empathizes with you and believes in you. Love knows
you’ll come through just as God planned, and love sticks right beside you
all the way. Love doesn’t give up, or quit, or diminish or go home. Love
keeps on keeping on, even when everything goes wrong and the feelings
leave and the other person doesn’t seem as special anymore. Love
succeeds 100 percent of the time. That, my friend, is what real love is!
Posted in Christianity, God, Hope, Jesus, Love, Soul, Spirituality, Theology, youth, youth ministry
Tagged Christianity, Love, Religion, Spirituality