This blog is a compilation of life lessons involving ministry, life, family and pretty much anything I feel like sharing.
Life's best lessons are learned from the trials and errors of yourself...and those around you. Hope you can learn from mine!
Sometimes people ask about the worship services and how they are organized at Grace Church. I thought I'd throw out a document that we use each week. It's the Order Of Worship (OOW). This is used by the Grace Audio Team, Video Team, Lighting Team, Praise Team, Usher Team and Stage Team. For those who look at this document each week, do you have any recomendations to improve it? Is there something that you think is unnecessary? If you are a worship leader and would be open to sharing how your services are organized, I'd love to see.
Sunday morning before church, I had to stop at a gas station in Raytown (don't laugh that's where I live). It's about 6:20 am and I've just stepped out of my car when this old beat up truck that says "Something Er Uther Roofing" pulls up to the front of the store. Was that the Dueling Banjo's on his stereo? I hear this loud voice calling out to me from across the parking lot, "DO YOU PLAY GEETAR?". Initially I thought to ignore him but then I saw that I was the only person at the gas pumps and knew he had to be talking to me. I responded "Yeah". Here's how it went down from there:
"Wanna buy a guitar for $50?"
"Uhhhhh..." He starts walking towards me. I feel around my pockets for any kind of weapon. Nothing but my cell phone. It worked for Russel Crowe, but he's a much stronger guy than myself. In my mind I think of a possible quick way to kick then run.
"I'd be glad to show you." His truck was right by the front door to the convenience store, which was not a Quik Trip (first mistake: always go to QT).
"Lemme pump this gas and I'll have a look." I pump then walk to the truck.
"Someone told me this was a $1,000 guitar, but there aren't any pawn shops open on a Sunday and I need to unload this." Red warning lights flash through my mind. Anytime someone wants to "unload this", it usually means stolen property.
"Where'd you get it?" I asked
"My sister's boyfriend was cheating on her and I took what was rightfully hers."
This was a Les Paul electric guitar in EXCELLENT condition. These are typically sold for $1,000 or more. I chose to not purchase the guitar. He gave me info to call him back if I changed my mind. That really is a steal (literally and figuratively).
This was a crazy/tempting situation for me. We're always put in positions to make ethical decisions. Would it have been wrong to buy this guitar? Was it a missed blessing from God? I wonder if you all think I should have bought the guitar? HMMmmmmmm.....
Grand leadership poobah, Tom Herzog, has launched a blog! I've been anxiously waiting to see what Tom would create for the blogosphere. If you want fresh insight and inspiration on leadership, life, husker and Packer football, you need to visit Tom's sight. I'm really looking forward to what Tom has in his noodle for all to see. Thanks for starting one up Tom!
There's a book written by Andy Stanley that someone gave me earlier this year. It blew me away! Choosing to Cheat challenges the workaholic to weigh how his/her time is spent. When work and the family collide, which do you choose?
I've seen many books that just tell someone what the problem is with their priorities then simply throws out a solution saying "spend more time with your family." Choosing to Cheat doesn't accuse the workaholic of being a loser, it also presents a strategic plan for resolving tension between work and family. It challenges the choices we make when we cheat our family out of time that they deserve.
I've found that my kids always know if I care based on the attention I give them, not by how many times I tell them I love them. You can usually identify what you hold most important by measuring the time you spend and where. If you struggle with balancing work and family, this book could be a great help. Get it and read it!
When was the last time you took a break from work or church? I mean, really took a break. Not just one of those breaks where you came to church but didn't "work" on a Sunday morning. But one of those breaks where you stayed at home, took a vacation, didn't answer the cell, didn't log on to email, didn't try to resolve problems apart from where to eat, what movie to watch or what game to play with your kids. One of THOSE breaks.
This past week I was at a hospital for 3 days while Addie and Layla were recovering from labor. Stranded without internet, able to make phone calls but not really work on anything, I found myself getting nervous about the weekend services. I even took a trip to the office and found that everything I was concerned about was already taken care of. Thanks to Scott Stanley, Bekah Herzog and Tim Howey! I guess work does get done when I'm not around...
Recently, I sat down and looked at my schedule and found that the last time I didn't come to church on a Sunday morning, was back in January of 2004. And that was when Addie and I went with the youth on a ski trip. There have been times that I didn't lead worship, but I still came to church early to help set up. During those services I was watching things that I typically don't have an opportunity to do from the stage.
I'm not writing this to boast. But to out myself as a freaky workaholic. It's not healthy. Many of you probably struggle with the same problem. When you are passionate about something, it's easy to get caught up and ignore the rest that you and your family needs.
Fellowship Church has identified key seasons throughout the year that are typically ideal times for their leaders to take rest. Click here. Their identified "slow" times mirror ours at Grace Church. These are good times to not only rest, but to give your team members opportunities to step up. Let go of the reigns a little and see how you've done as a leader in delegating.
Bored? Take a look at this. Homestarrunner.com is probably THE funniest stuff on the web. Make sure you stop by Strongbad's emails. Thanks to Andy Michael for revealing this site to me a couple years ago. Enjoy!
Are your kids not grasping the importance of financial responsibility? Are you tired of trying to train your children creatively? It seems the material girl herself has a visionary strategy to teach her children financial responsibility! Check it out here.
She's here! Born Tuesday, June 21 2005 at 4:17am. She weighed in at 7lbs 3oz and 19 inches long.
Addie is doing amazing! Mothers are incredible! If I had given birth I would probably be on bedrest for a week. Come to think of it, I guess if I had given birth I'd probably be on a lot more than bedrest!I'd be a strange phenom in the age of modern science!
A close friend of mine said "Wow, a father of three." Being that he's a father of two, he is aware of the challenge before me. I said, "Looks like I'm ahead." To which he replied, "No...you're the winner!" Too funny! I thought about that conversation afterwards. If I'm the winner, what's my prize? Then I looked down and saw Layla sleeping peacefully in mommy's arms. I think I found my prize...
Thanks for all your well wishes, prayers and visits.
Grace Church video lead guru, Doug Howey, has launched a new blog. He is a fellow Star Wars freak. Doug and I sat in the theatre May 19 for the midnight showing of Revenge of the Sith together. Just to show how geeky we are, we actually brought a portable DVD player and watched Star Wars movies before viewing Revenge of the Sith. Check out Doug's blog "HoWeCogitate: Advocation of Cogitation...a plea to think."
Longtime friend of mine, Eric Kays, has also launched a blog. I have been encouraging him to do one because I know he's got some great stuff to share up in his noggin. Check out "Learning the Hard Way".
I love the blogosphere. I love it more when friends and acquaintences start blogging. There's nothing like catching up with people through this medium. Looking forward to seeing what you guys have to share!