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You Can’t But He Can

on Apr 21, 2014 | 0 comments

If there is anything that I am learning lately is that I am really incapable of doing many of the things that I want to see happen. That when I think about the goals, dreams and aspirations I have for the people that God has placed in my care and the mission He has planted in my heart, I am almost completely at a loss at how I could even accomplish them. But isn’t that the point? Doesn’t God want to put me, and you, in positions that cause us to desire Him? Jesus was teaching his disciples about what must happen in the next few days and described his own death. But he didn’t give it a negative trend. He said it would be for their good that he must go. That he must leave so he can send another. That after he leaves, they will be able to look at a mountain…. a mountain… and speak to it and it will throw itself into the sea. A MOUNTAIN. I look at the things...

Why Heaven is For Real and You Should RETHINK Going to Watch “Heaven is For Real”

on Apr 17, 2014 | 0 comments

I went and watched God’s Not Dead and thought it was a good movie. I thought that there were a number of things I would have done differently and I left the movie feeling a bit unnerved with the portrayal of the non-Christians. But, I left the movie confident that much was communicated through the movie that I would align myself with. However, I saw the previews for “Heaven is for Real” at the movie and I thought to myself, “Here we go again.” I’ve not read the book, but I struggle with the premise that a kid went to Heaven and came back. There are many reasons that I struggle with this, but I don’t know why I would be alone in that feeling. If you look at Proverbs 30:4 or John 3:13, I think any follower of Jesus would struggle with the idea that anyone has actually been to Heaven and came back. I think David Platt makes a better case than I...

Keep Jesus Simple

on Mar 26, 2014 | 0 comments

It’s Wednesday and this week, that means a Gospel presentation. It is really the culmination of a week of stories and messages leading to an invitation to students to respond to the truth of salvation in Christ and the things that He has done for them to be with Him. Tonight, we present a relationship that keeps Jesus simple. But, even this week, I have found myself making things a bit complicated. Like I do when I’m talking about complicated things. Complicated things that are more cultural things than they are Jesus things. I found myself rehashing my talks with these students and recognizing that what they need is for me to keep Jesus simple. See the simple truth of Jesus is that He came, He taught, He died, and He rose again, so that  we could be with Him in eternity. The simplicity of salvation through believing and faith through that belief that makes Jesus accessible...

You Don’t Have It Together

on Mar 24, 2014 | 0 comments

I’m with a bunch of middle schoolers this week, and I’m noticing a trend that is pervasive in this middle school culture. It’s the notion that you have to have it together to be accepted, or to be recognized. That somehow, by middle school, these students are convinced, by some one or something, that brokenness is weakness and weakness is ugly and undesirable. But, if you think about it, I know exactly right where they are getting it. They are getting it from me and their seeing it in you, too. I’d make a safe bet that most of the people reading this blog have it stuck in their head, somewhere, that at some degree, you have to have it all together; that brokenness is weakness and weakness is ugly and undesirable. But here’s some truth to your life: You don’t have it all together. Come on. You don’t have it all together. Don’t be ashamed,...

We Are More

on Mar 22, 2014 | 0 comments

I can’t tell you how many times I have sat in worship services, small group conversations, and other forms of Christian conversation that was so focused on what we did not know or what we were not capable of doing. This is too difficult, or this will happen if we do this, or whatever the excuse was. We had forgotten that we are more. I have been listening to Rend Collective’s latest album and there is a song in the album that is so powerful to me because it is straight out of Romans 8. The song is called “More than Conquerors” and it is as catchy as “Happy” by Pharrell Williams. But where it comes from is so incredible. No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. – Romans 8:37 If you look at the context of the passage, you will find Paul talking about all of the everything that comes from becoming Free in...

Just Start

on Mar 21, 2014 | 1 comment

Have you ever read something that someone else said and thought to yourself: “That seems like good advice. I should probably do it too.” Well, consider this an exercise in that practice to just start. One of my best friends, Michael, also writes a blog. It’s an excellent blog and I recommend you head over some time and read what he says about life as well. He’s an excellent thinker and challenges many people to deeper relationship. Today, I’m challenged by Michael. I’m challenged because whether I’m good at this writing thing or not, I’m not going to get better by not doing it. I definitely wouldn’t know if I didn’t just start. Furthermore, I’d never get better at speaking if I never took advantage of any and all opportunities to speak. You’ll never start getting better if you don’t first start doing. I want...

Dating 101: Questions – Answered

on Mar 7, 2014 | 0 comments

The last few weeks, we have been plowing through this year’s relationships series. We called it Dating 101 and focused on how to do relationship well. While there are many aspects of relationships that we wanted to spend time on, we spent time on very practical items: 1. the basics of relationships, 2. physical boundaries that honor God, and 3. how to break up the way Jesus would. On the last night, we made it available to ask questions via our friends at PollEverywhere.com and promised to answer those questions. We got two questions at this point and so here are those promised answers! Q: “How are you supposed to know if the person you like is right with God?” A: This is a great question, but I think that it is just a bit off. See, if you are asking this question, it is pretty clear that you don’t know the answer to this question. Together, we defined Dating as...

I Will Just Never Understand

on Feb 26, 2014 | 0 comments

You know those things in life that you don’t understand? What about those things that you don’t understand and you’re pretty confident that you will never actually understand them? There are a few things that cause us to think these things, but they are a powerful few things. Death is one of those things that can fall into the “incomprehensible” category. Especially, and usually only, the power that unplanned death can have. Even death that we think we are prepared for has incredible effects on people. But it’s the unplanned death that can have such an effect on us. Death causes us to think a lot of thoughts. It causes us to consider many things that we never usually consider simply because we are in such shock of what just took place. We think about what could have been had we done X, Y, or Z. We try to put ourselves into the shoes of the person or...