Archive for August 2007

She Needs Your Help

August 31, 2007

Ok, here’s the Friday Challenge:

Guys – Dads in particular – our wives need our help. Let me preface this statement with a few points. First, I’m saying this because I’ve failed miserably before (numerous times…ok, too many to count) in this area. Consider this more of a journal entry than a blog post. Second, for you “deep” thinkers out there, don’t take this too far. I’m not elaborating on the role of woman vs. men. (I can hear some extremist shouting now, “But the woman is the help mate!”) Not trying to debate anything like that here.

So, here’s the point. And it hit me randomly this morning. My wife needs my help. (Wow, revolutionary, eh?) But seriously, it’s SO EASY for us dudes to get so wrapped up in our work (good thing, yes) and our football and our whatever whatever, that we forget to do simple things to help out our wives. I relate this mostly to us with kiddos…especially if you have more than one.

So here’s our weekend challenge: Let’s do a little extra. Give em a break. 1 day of no diaper changing. Or, like I need to do more of, help get the kids ready for school in the morning. Pick up, clean up. Do more than the trash. Surprise her with a back massage (if you got a little cash, make it a professional one). Wash a load of clothes (wait, that’s taking it too far…ha).

For those thinking I’m just writing this to earn some points or to make myself look good…………………I would never do such a thing. Warning: Sarcasm Detected

Thursday Unload

August 30, 2007
  • I’m looking forward to watching LSU vs MSU on the teli tonight. Never thought I’d be excited over watching these two play, but hey – it’s the first game of the season!
  • Yesterday, while driving to work, John 15:5 came to mind – again and again. The thoughts of “apart from Him – we can do NOTHING”. Funny how we commit our lives to this calling, this following of Jesus…and it’s impossible to live it without the indwelling of the Holy Spirit; impossible to do on our own merit; we are extremely weak – yet through Him and in Him and by Him, we approach the Father with the utmost confidence, blameless, set apart, Holy, asking for whatever we need. (Yeah, elementary stuff here…but dude, just amazing when you stop and consider it.) So yesterday it was just a great drive time of reflecting on His sustaining strength and a reminder that we must daily yield our wants and desires and most importantly, “stop trying” – realizing that ANY good that will come out of me that day will come from Him.
  • Flying to Dallas next weekend. Meeting with kIDS Beach Club again. Dana and I always come back refreshed after being around this group. When you are around people who have given decades of their life to serving kids and loving kids and have a passion to teach children about God…man, it just fires you up. Refreshment for the soul.
  • Another co-worker of mine switched to Verizon yesterday. Another soul saved. (ha)
  • Dana fell down the stairs recently (sorry babe, had to share). You ought to see the bruise on her arm. Ouch.
  • I’m looking forward to spending time with family on Monday. No work!
  • I’m kinda/sorta/a little/still trying to avoid/pretty much already doing it – coaching Logan’s 4yr old soccer team. Kinda got stuck on me. It’s a riot. I’m seriously about to go “Patch Adams” on them and start doing some really unconventional practice drills. I mean, cmon, these are 4yr olds. How do you think the parents will react when I have the kids act like their favorite animal while kicking the ball into the net?
  • Spoke with an 85yr old lady from NJ yesterday. She moved to the US when she was 27, from Italy. She talked about her famous pasta and meatballs. I would LOVE to drive up to NJ and partake of her delicious cooking. Imagine how old her recipe is. Yummy.
  • Random question of the day…from my 6yr old…”Daddy, bad guys don’t trust God, do they?”

Lyrics For Today

August 28, 2007

Song stuck in my head right now:

Sing to the King

Sing to the King Who is coming to reign
Glory to Jesus, the Lamb that was slain
Life and salvation His empire shall bring
And joy to the nations when Jesus is King

Come, let us sing a song
A song declaring that we belong to Jesus
He is all we need
Lift up a heart of praise
Sing now with voices raised to Jesus
Sing to the King

For His returning we watch and we pray
We will be ready the dawn of that day
We’ll join in singing with all the redeemed
‘Cause Satan is vanquished and my Jesus is King

The 2nd time through the 2nd verse…the way it builds up to the moment – the proclamation of Jesus being King, and Satan being vanquished – dude, cmon now…are we awake?…hello?…if this doesn’t move you in some way…especially the way it dramatically builds…and singing it loud amongst others making the same proclamation…wow. Good stuff.

Cool FCA Promo Video (AU of course)

August 26, 2007

Day At The Park

August 26, 2007

So this weekend has been interesting. Dana is out of town. I’m surviving with all 4 by myself. The kids…well, the kids…I think are surviving too. Hey babe, here’s proof we survived the park yesterday:

AL vs GA (the states)

August 24, 2007

I grew up in North Alabama. Spent the first 18 years of my life there. Same house. The next 4.5 years I spent in Southeast AL, in college. I’ve now lived in GA for 2.5 years. Plus, my wife is from GA. And I went to college with a bunch of GA kids.

I give you that background to let you know my opinions on the two states are informed ones; experienced ones; opinions you can trust. (Wow, I’m starting to sound like Fox News.) So without further ado, I give you my Top 5 / Top 5.

Top 5 Reasons I like Alabama over Georgia:

  • It’s hard to put into words, but it’s just a different FEEL. A slower pace. A front porch setting. Not as much “keeping up with the Jones'”.
  • Far less TRAFFIC! Yeah, I know, B’ham and Montgomery and Huntsville THINK they have traffic, but they have no idea.
  • Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville. Fun place to visit. They keep adding new venues. And hey, what better place to put a bunch of really smart engineers and the history of our space program than SMACK DAB IN THE MIDDLE OF NORTH ALABAMA! Awesome!
  • Home of Auburn University. This fact not only makes Alabama one of the top 10 states in the country, but qualifies it as one of the best sites in the WORLD.
  • College sports rule the state. No pro sports present. That can be a negative at times, but it gives the state of Alabama a unique feel.

Top 5 Reasons I like Georgia over Alabama:

  • You don’t have to deal with intolerable Bammer fans. You don’t have to hear about their 12 (really only 6) nashinul champeeonchips. You don’t see as many dudes in houndstooth hats wearing a torn tanktop and giving more money for his season tickets than he does for 2 years worth of child support. (Ok, maybe I got carried away on that one.)
  • Braves and Thrashers. It is nice to have pro sports close by. It is nice to hop in the car with my 6 yr old and drive 45 minutes to watch the Braves play. That’s fun. (Notice I did NOT mention the Falcons.)
  • Sometimes, better business opportunities. Let’s face it: there’s just ton more business here and tons more companies.
  • More to do, especially if you have kids. GA Aquarium, Coca Cola Museum, Six Flags, etc, etc, etc.
  • GA only gets 4. I’ve assessed a 1pt penalty on GA for their attitude towards Alabama residents. There’s a little too much “we are better than you” attitude here (not even close to being true) and too much nose up in the air. The irony of these comments is there’s actually MORE rednecks in Georgia than Alabama. (Don’t try and debate me on this. You will lose.)

One thing I left out, because it’s a tie, is the hunting/fishing/state park comparison. Both are excellent.

Well, there you have it. The scientific, non bias (yeah right), comparison of these two glorious states. I’d love to write more, but Sweet Home Alabama just came on the radio and I’ve been trying to record this song on my cassette player for months now. Gotta go!

Amazed

August 23, 2007

Right when I thought life could not get any better, I visit a Cold Stone Creamery and find out:

IT CAN!

(for those new to the internet, you need to click on “IT CAN!”….there you will discover something you never thought could get any better, but it appears Cold Stone has made my wildest dreams come true.)

On The Brain

August 22, 2007

* Just how TALL can my grass get? Wonder if I should try and set a neighborhood record…or maybe I should actually get out there and cut it some time soon.

* Have been working long hours lately…plus on the go with kid’s sports now…we need another vacation and QUICK.

* Heard a stat on the radio this morning: Atlanta has more 25-34 yr olds than anywhere in the country. And they keep coming in droves. (For those in ministry looking to target singles or that age group—come to hotlanta!)

* My work provided me with a new Treo. I’m lovin it. I feel “official” now. Ha.

* It’s scary how much a 6 yr old already understands about life and faith and how much they watch your actions.

* Verizon is the best wireless network, no debate.

* Bluetooth is overrated.

* Apple computers are overrated.

* TV is overrated…I still watch too much of it though.

* In my f/t sales job, I am fortunate. I work around people who have been in ministry for years. We have a ton in common, the same heart for people, and just downright get along great. I am very fortunate to have this work atmosphere.

* Do you think playing poker is a sin?

* I still don’t own an Ipod…not yet.

* Thing I’m looking forward to most in the next 48 hours: purchasing a new pair of dress slacks.

* The previous comment makes my life a sad and pathetic one. 🙂

* I dearly miss ultimate frisbee.

* We serve an incredible INCREDIBLE God. We are extremely flawed. He is extremely forgiving and full of mercy. His love endures forever. What a great and trustworthy God!

Pic of the Day

August 21, 2007

As seen on I-65 in AL.

I certainly have an opinion on this sign, but I’d like to hear from you. Leave a quick response in the comment section.

Let The Hatred (Sorry, Major Dislike) Begin

August 21, 2007

In My Head

August 20, 2007

Some insightful randomness from days ago and days ahead:

+ Took the kids to Chuckie Cheese tonight. We wouldn’t normally do that on a school night, but everyone took a super log nap today from a long weekend. I can assure you I enjoy the Chuckster just as much (reality: more) as my kids do. I especially enjoy it more since they dropped all games to 1 token. And here’s a freebie for you: They don’t advertise it, but you when you go to redeem your tickets, cotton candy is a choice (150 tickets). I learned that tonight and we enjoyed two bags of blue sugar. Much better than a cheap plastic fall-apart-toy.

+ The thing that stood out to me this morning during our membership orientation at Northstar Church was the proof of impact made in the community. A lot of churches TALK about reaching the community, but Northstar has become the FIRST CALL during a crisis, etc. It was neat watching a video of school principles, coaches, and even the city mayor talk about the difference a group of people have made in the community. My favorite line from the mayor: “What has always impressed me is the unconditional giving of the Northstar people. They always give without asking for anything in return…like saying we’ll give you something but you need to attend our church.”

+ Played disc golf on the campus of Berry College in Rome, GA. Played early early early Saturday morning. Did I mention it was early? We saw hundreds of deer, some within 50 yards. I think Berry has the largest campus in the world, no joke. The disc golf course was nice, if you like deer droppings every 10 feet.

+ Dana starts teaching preschool on Monday.

+ Braden and Logan start soccer practice Monday night. I love soccer. Was by far my favorite sport growing up. (I wish I was in that kind of shape now!)

+ Friday we had a HUMUNGO God thing happen! A former company I worked for owed me some money, but I figured to never see it b/c they had sorta gone under. (I know, “sorta gone under” sounds weird but they “kinda” merged with another company, and now that company shut their doors.) Dana and I had family and friends coming in to town for a birthday party and wanted to splurge a little and make it a nice weekend….but things were tight. This check randomly shows up on Friday, unexpected, and enabled us to do some things we couldn’t have otherwise. It should never surprise me, after all, God is in the business of providing for us and caring for us and we shouldn’t worry. But it still just blows me away every time.

+ Dana is having a girls get-away this coming weekend, at the lake. I’ll have all 4 kids to myself. Pray for the safety of my children! 🙂

+ I have a guy get-away the following weekend in AU. (Tailgaiting, ESPN night game, Losing my voice, F-U-N.)

Friday’s Quote

August 17, 2007

Today’s quote comes from my 4 yr old, Logan:

Logan: Mommy, you’re my best friend, I love you.
Editor’s Note: This is a huge step for us. He’s our strong willed child. Sometimes when he’s upset he’ll say “I’m NOT your best friend”….so this this random act of love is huge for us! 🙂
Dana: Ahhh Logan, thank you, I love you too.
Logan: Mommy, I never want you to go away…
Dana: Well Logan, I don’t either, I will always love you and always be your mommy…
Logan: Cause mommy, if you go away then we won’t have anyone to take us to Chuckie Cheese…boys and girls can’t go to Chuckie Cheese without somebody to watch them.
Dana: (Laughing Hysterically)
Logan: And Mommy, if I tried to get in car and drive, I crash.
Dana: (Laughing Even More Hysterically) Logan, I love you, now go ahead and lay down and take your nap.

family+friends=very cool weekend

August 17, 2007

We have friends and family coming in town this weekend. A little birthday celebration for my only daughter, Kinley. I was looking through some old pictures the other day and was reminded just how important family is. (Given, though, that most family is very strange and should be highly medicated…ha.) I reminisced about the days when we would ALWAYS go down the road to my cousin’s house, or my grandmother’s house….or some family member’s pad…to celebrate someone’s birthday. Actually, we didn’t even need a birthday excuse to get together. We used to gather for fish fries. (These gatherings included home made icecream, hand crank style.) We used to gather…..JUST to gather. I miss those days sometimes.

What I love most about family and what I love most about friends from my hometown or childhood or my past – THEY KNOW ME. We always pick up wherever we left off. And they keep you grounded. As Dana and I have floated from KY to GA and have signed on for new adventures along the way – ministries and careers and everything under the moon – these vitally important people remind us of who we REALLY are and keep us grounded. They also pray for us like nobody’s business. (That’s an unusual phrase.)

So I’m looking forward to rocking NorthWest Georgia this weekend. Will be taking everyone to the SonFest in Woodstock, GA. (Hint: Free admission, free inflatables for kids to jump on, great music.)

Afterthought: Yes, I even love the Bama fans in my family…God bless their soul. 🙂

tHuRsdAY’s iMagE

August 16, 2007

I Am Certain

August 15, 2007

I am certain that in life, in business, in ministry, in…everything, that people will disappoint you. I am certain that I will disappoint others, that I will fail. I am certain that I must keep pressing on.

I am certain that as long as life involves people, flawed people, that you will experience hurt and will be wronged. I am certain that I myself have hurt others and thank God for that little thing called grace.

I am certain that business owners, managers, church leaders, people in authority…will make mistakes, mistakes that affect you. I am certain that I will do dumb things, dumb things that will affect others. I pray they are minimal. I pray for wisdom.

I am certain that beyond any disappointment, hurt, or wrong doing is God’s absolute best. I am certain that beyond that difficult time is something you couldn’t have dreamed up yourself. It’s bigger than you. I am certain that life sometimes takes trials to build character. I am certain that God is looking for men and women who above all else will hold fast to Him, and react in all circumstances with patience, understanding, forgiveness…character. I am certain I struggle with that. I am certain that we are to pray for those who do us wrong. I am certain that is whacked out. I wonder how many people have to pray for me?

I am certain that nobody is always trustworthy. I am certain that HE is.

I am certain that I’m uncertain about a lot of things, including how to end this post.

"It’s Almost Like They’re Little Adults"

August 14, 2007

I was listening to a radio station interview The Duggar Family this morning, on my way to work. It was not a Christian radio station and it was quite humorous to hear some of the interaction. One caller was frustrated…actually, quite upset…at this family because she felt they were denying their kids a “normal” childhood and somewhat enslaving them by requiring they pitch in and help. Mrs.Duggar patiently, and with tons of grace, responded to each question and remark. She explained that the older children actually wanted to help out. That they did their best to raise them with a mindset of serving others.

She elaborated on that point and captured everyone’s attention. She pointed to the fact that in our society today we have SUCH a culture of selfishness. And kids are not taught nearly enough to serve others. She talked about the reward of living like this, and the joy their family finds in serving one another…and how she wouldn’t expect anyone to truly understand. (For the record: I don’t know where they stand theologically, but props for promoting family and servanthood!)

The caller interrupted Mrs.Duggar and said, “Yeah, but, but,…I don’t know, it’s still just weird, you relying on your older ones to take care of the younger ones…it’s almost like they’re little adults or something.” When I heard her say that I thought WOW. So many parents are clueless, eh? (Including myself often times.) Have people forgotten that your children ARE little adults?!? How SOFT have we gotten? Are we teaching responsibility any more?

I realize it’s a fine line…especially as a follower of Christ. The line is this: Not wanting to be legalistic. You don’t want to harp so much on responsibility, discipline, DEMANDING allegiance/servanthood…we know the result of that. But dude, wow. Have we forgotten that children ARE little adults and we are cultivating their skills, etc? I mean, it wasn’t too many decades ago that around the age of 12 they were expected to BIG TIME contribute to the economy of the family, etc.

Well, I think you get the point. In fear that I will start sounding too mature or like an old goob, I’ll get back to my Honeycomb cereal in a cup and my Mountain Dew.

Summary: Yeah, they’re kids…let em be kids…but cmon, never forget they CAN handle much more responsibility than we give them now-a-days. And great job Mrs.Duggar. Great reminder on serving others—-especially FAMILY, which is very difficult at times.

Sunday Quote

August 12, 2007

2 quotes that stood out to me in today’s message:

“Beliefs are something we hold, convictions are something that hold us.”
—-
“You can teach what you know, but ultimately you’ll reproduce what you are.”

The message was What Every Child Needs to Know about God. (He’s GREAT! He’s Real! He’s Personal!)

What’s It Like?

August 10, 2007

So tell me, what’s it like? I really want to know. What’s it like watching our arrogance? What’s it like hearing us say some of things we say…and how do you keep silent? How do you not respond sometimes? Your quiet confidence speaks volumes. What’s it like to see our “success” and hear us compare it to your “dead” ministry? What’s it like to watch us parade our new, innovative, “far better” techniques, approaches, philosophies, ultra “cool” and yet somehow much much deeper spiritual stuff? What’s it like?

No sir. No ma’am. We are not all this way. But yes sir, unfortunately too many are. And how did it reach this anyway? Why is it an us/you thing? We are all on the same team, right? I suppose for good intentions so many of us set out to plant new places of hope. To reach new people. But I apologize to you – some of the greatest generation ever – for our arrogance. Whether intentional or unintentional, we’ve discounted your years of service. With slicing critiques and unwise words we diminish your faithfulness to Christ and His Bride.

Kind of funny when you think about it. We get excited over X number of people coming to our new place. Yet, when I think about the years you’ve invested into the few…and how those few went on to change a few more….and those went on to influence more…ahh….wow…I see…THAT is discipleship. Yeah, we try to integrate “discipleship” too. But I’m just not sure it’s as effective as what you’ve done.

So tell me, what’s it like? And after you tell me what it’s been like to watch me make a fool of myself (sometimes a good fool – for Christ), help me. Pass on what you have. My generation desperately needs it. We need the balance. We need your years of wisdom. We need your patience and insight. We need your discipline in prayer and faithfulness.

I can’t contain the excitement when I think about coupling our enthusiasm and “do whatever it takes” attitude with your years of experience, wisdom, spiritually maturity, and leadership.

Rock on. (Oh, sorry, that’s code for Praise the Lord!)
🙂

Perspective

August 9, 2007

I recently spoke with an 82yr old gentleman who said he worked 40 years with a company and chose to never take a vacation. As in NEVER. As in four zero. As in keep working and don’t stop. He saved up cash and bought a modest home for 120,000. He’s now considering a vacation. He’s thinking about a cruise.

So stop your whining and get back to work!

🙂

A little warm

August 8, 2007


Our house bakes in the afternoon. Direct sun. No trees. No shade. Up on a small hill. Blazin hot.

Ahhhh……summer in GA. Lovely.

And I sat….

August 8, 2007

….and I sat….and I sat….and I sat…..in my car, in traffic.

Welcome back to school kiddos.

(Can I rent a helicopter this first week and drop them off that way?)

Upgrade

August 6, 2007



What will it be like watching a replay of an opposing quarterback get smacked in the mouth on the SEC’s first high def jumbotron (2.9 million)?

Answer: Lots of fun

More Info

Quite Simple: Love

August 5, 2007

“It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.”
1 Cor 13:7

I’m blessed. Actually, blessed is an understatement. I feel like the most fortunate dude alive. I’ve been involved with some incredible ministries – churches, outreach groups, campus stuff, etc. Today’s message at Northstar reminded me about the common denominator in each of these places. Mike Linch wrapped up the Summer of Love series and talked about how love always protects, always looks for the best in others, always places others first, and never gives up on people. It was a powerful message…but what is more powerful is the people and actions behind the message.

When I think about these places of impact I think of the simple common feature: Love. Of the various things I’ve been involved with, the various states I’ve lived, the one common thing about the good ministries is the contagiousness of the people; the love they poured out on others.

It’s important to note just how different all of these places are. Different philosophies. Different approaches to ministry. Different styles. Different convictions on various topics. But their heart for people, their contagious love – the common denominator – made such a huge impact on me.

West Huntsville Baptist Church – I’ve never been around a more loving, caring group of people – ever. I don’t just say this b/c I grew up in this church. I say this b/c it’s the solid truth. There’s a “love you no matter what” attitude that permeates that place. Almost like an Auburn family feel—-despite the pastor being a Bama fan. 🙂

Charleston Outreach – I’ve never been around a more hard working, “labor of love” group in my life. I’ve never seen so many hearts break for those in their community…and be resolved to bring healing to the many hurts. Though Dana and I just spent a summer there, it’s forever embedded in me.

NorthStar Church – It’s been just a couple of weeks since we arrived at our new home and I’m blown away by the heart of this church. I knew of it’s reputation…it’s hard to avoid hearing about the impact their making in this area. It’s so much more than style or the Sunday morning service. People matter. Period. How we love others matters. Period. Loving God, Loving Others. Period. Good stuff.

This week: Love like crazy. That’s the challenge for me this week. Join me.

Post Revisited

August 4, 2007


Last July I posted THIS about Vidal. Well, last night I ran in to him at Home Depot. I recognized his face…and obviously the golden gun necklace he was wearing. I stopped him and asked, “You work at Walmart, right?” (I was already 95% sure it was him.) We chatted for about 10 seconds. Dana thinks I’m crazy…and I just think Vidal is the coolest guy in Bartow County.

A Serious Question

August 3, 2007

I’ve thought this through. I’ve considered the cost of asking a question like this. I’ve pondered the effects this might have on me and my family…or even my career. I’ve determined it’s worth the risk. I’ve decided the answer to this question is a foundational one – that you as a human being may not function wholly without the right answer. It’s that important. So here it is. Here’s the grand salami. Here’s the life altering, only one correct answer QUESTION: Is there a better soft drink than Mountain Dew?

The answer is no.

If you care to differ, please leave a thorough response in the comment section…but be prepared for the debate of your life.

🙂

I’m Ready

August 2, 2007

Hurry up please!

Click HERE to get fired up.

Thursday’s Tune

August 2, 2007

One of my favorite songs on the radio right now (mainly because of the beat) is “What I’ve Done” by Linkin Park. Here’s the lyrics:

In this farewell,
There’s no blood,
There’s no alibi.
`Cause I’ve drawn regret,
From the truth,
Of a thousand lies.

So let mercy come, And wash away

What I’ve Done.
I’ll face myself,
To cross out what I’ve become.
Erase myself,
And let go of what I’ve done.

Put to rest,
What you thought of me.
While I clean this slate,
With the hands,
Of uncertainty.

So let mercy come,
And wash away

What I’ve Done.
I’ll face myself,
To cross out what I’ve become.
Erase myself,
And let go of what I’ve done.

For What I’ve Done

I’ll start again,
And whatever pain may come.
Today this ends,
I’m forgiving what I’ve done.

I’ll face myself,
To cross out what I’ve become.
Erase myself,
And let go of what I’ve done.
What I’ve done.

Forgiving What I’ve Done.

Come And See!

August 1, 2007

Come and see what God has done, how awesome his works in man’s behalf!” Psalm 66:5
Come, see a man who told me everything I ever did.” John 4:29a

I have a confession to make. This past Sunday my mind wondered during worship. Was it b/c I was bored in church? No, not even close. The worship team at Northstar did their part. They set the stage, so to speak. I wasn’t doing my part. My attention was not on the One who saves, on the One who is worthy of all my devotion. But don’t go scolding me quite yet. Here’s where my mind was:

I couldn’t help but look around and observe…and think…and observe people engaged in saying THANKS to their creator…and TAKE all of me…and EXCLAIMING that there is no other God…and saying, well, saying whatever they were saying. So much was going through my head Sunday morning. The dominating thought was this: I think I understand (though maybe only slightly) why “this type” of church is doing well…or why other churchplants succeed. Nothing profound here, but I think it involves what the 2 versus above say: Come and See. Like the psalmist said or the Samaritan woman said. I think in most “successful” churches (yeah, I know, I’m really opening all sorts of other debates) you have tons of people who have experienced Christ and have a “come and see” attitude.

I like this point (of course I would, it’s mine) b/c it flies in the face of critics and opponents of the “modern church movement”. Those that would say most churchplants are too “soft” or people are just coming b/c it’s “cool” worship, etc. Instead of trying to debate (I’ve read enough blogs to avoid that) these critics with the same internet rhetoric, let me just speak from my experience.

For the past year and 1/2 to 2 yrs, Dana and I helped Oak Leaf Church kick off in Cartersville. We had an absolute blast. Made incredible relationships. Shared Christ a ton. “Planted” something great in the community. Poured into kids. Now, with our involvement in KIDs Beach Clubs, we recently transitioned over to Northstar Church in Kennesaw. And that’s where I was Sunday when this simple, yet I think profound, thought kept bugging me.

I think the excitement of what most people experience at places like Oak Leaf and Northstar should not be easily discredited or overanalyzed (bashed) in some seminary class. From my experience, I see tons of people full of compassion, full of a newfound hope, relieved to be out of their past (some, a past of never knowing God, some a past of stifling religious tradition), inviting their friends and neighbors and co-workers and family to COME AND SEE what’s going on…to come and encounter this Jesus that has flipped them upside down…to come and meet this group of crazies that reached out to them.

What a great picture it was to take a few seconds and just look around Sunday. To see the diversity. To watch people worship. And the families. Tons of them. I thought about the many stories I’ve heard of young people accepting Christ and then bringing their family to church with them. Seeing the college kids (hey, I can say kids now, I’m stinkin’ 30! Argh…) and the youth reminded me of my days at AUburn and how it fits with this point.

I can remember my freshman year and getting involved in the campus ministry. I can remember God RADICALLY changing my life. God using ordinary students who discipled me. And an ordinary small campus ministry that was accomplishing extraordinary things. And after observing how these students worshipped, and led their lives, and chose to live differently….you get the point….all I could think of is “Dude, so-and-so and my parents and so-and-so HAVE TO SEE THIS! They have to experience what I have experienced! I feel for them, they missed this tonight. Whatever it takes, I gotta get them here!”

It was similar to the almighty Auburn football experience (you knew I’d work this in). Once I became a student and tailgated, and sat in the student section, and watched the eagle fly pre-game, and rolled Toomer’s Corner, I honestly felt sorry for every college student in the world NOT attending Auburn. I knew they were missing out. NOBODY could be having as much fun as I was having. It got in your blood. All I wanted to do is tell everybody about it and invite them to join the party. To indoctrinate them. (ha)

So bringing all these ramblings to a close, here’s a challenge. If you’re in ministry or volunteering at church or just attending church, what are you doing to help spread this “come and see” spirit? If you’re immediate thought went to style of music, marketing, how you dress, type of podium, screens instead of hymnals, etc, then I think you missed the point. To ask it in an old fashioned way: What are you doing to spread revival? What are we doing to make sure every follower of Christ is devoted to “giving their faith away”? This goes so far beyond your “style”…it goes to the heart of the matter, doesn’t it? Transformed lives inviting others to COME and SEE.