Friday, July 31, 2009

One message...

I know I've got a few preacher/teacher types around here.

I'm wondering if you had one talk, one shot, one chance (cue Eminem music), what would you say?

You pick the setting and the audience.

Book #30...

The Apostle
Brad Thor

It's kind of like reading an episode of 24 meets The Unit.

Decent summer read.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Unspeakable horrors...

This has been floating around for a while, but as a Taylor guitar owner who has always been nervous about taking a guitar on a flight, I felt I should share this.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

No end in sight...

It's 36 degrees right now.

With the humidity it feels like 43.

Today I came home from the office and jumped in the pool with the kids.

Now I'm inside and cooking alive.

I love summer!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Have I got a deal for you...

So, we're on the hunt for another vehicle. With Erin starting classes this fall and with me not being able to bum rides off the interns (thanks Ryan & Josh!) I'm going to need some transportation.

So we've succeeded in driving back and forth across the Lower Mainland looking at car lots and haggling with sales people and scoping out websites to find something that works.

Today we got close with a VW. Then we had second thoughts.

Now we're back in the same place we were when we started: no car.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

How's your timing...

In Seattle there is a giant water thingy (more descriptive words evade me due to the late hour). It shoots water out randomly in all directions. So I did what any good father would do, I offered my kids $1 if they would run and touch the "globe" and then run back to me.

Their timing was pretty good, so I lost a couple of bucks.

Becca was the first one there and back.

Aidan took some convincing, but he eventually made it.

My timing was not so good. I clearly underestimated how much water was being spewed forth by this thing.

Erin's timing was ok on the first run, but then I convinced all of them to hold still a while longer so I could take a picture. The waited while I fiddled with the camera. And then the water cooperated.

In other words, I may have been out a couple of bucks, but I got the last laugh!

Monday, July 20, 2009

When the good stuff sucks...

Did you ever have one of those moments where you remember something being much better than it actually is later on in life?

You know, those times where you remember a TV show or movie being funny, only to find out later in life upon watching it again that it wasn't. Or that restaurant you once loved has become a complete and utter disappointment. Or that relative you thought was funny turns out not to be funny at all.

I experienced one of those moments last night. After spending the day at the Seattle zoo and attending a service at Mars Hill we headed for home. There's a new Carl's Jr so I was able to convince Erin (she hates the place) that we should stop (I think she loves me too much sometimes, because she lets me do things like this).

I ordered my jalapeƱo burger and my chili cheese fries and then settled in for what I was thinking would be a great meal.

Not so fast. In fact, I'd easily rank it as one of the worst meals I have ever eaten.

Soggy buns, bland chicken, terrible service, tasteless fries...shall I continue.

It was the first time in a long time that I actually didn't even finish my meal.

So, when was the last time you were disappointed by something you thought was going to be good?

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Where did everyone go...

Is it just me, or does it seem like everyone is dropping off the blogosphere?

I've lost count of the sheer number of people who have either completely given up their blogging, or at the very least they have taken a summer break.

I say this with no disdain whatsoever. In fact I have a great level of respect for anyone who recognizes how they need to change priorities and then has the fortitude to follow through with it.

But I wonder if Twitter has not hastened the death of blogging?

I use my blogs to try and keep up with people, some who are close friends while others are minor celebrities. Now most of those people are using Twitter which means I fairly regularly hear about what they're up to. Which seems to do away with any need to blog, right?

Be honest, are you thinking of giving up blogging too?

Friday, July 17, 2009

Book #29...

8 Simple Rules For Dating My Teenage Daughter
W. Bruce Cameron

This was the basis for the TV show starring John Ritter some years back. I finally remembered to look for it at the library. It's a stinking funny book that makes me nervous when I consider the fact that I'll have a teenage daughter in just over 6 years. Yikes!

When I think of my daughter dating, all I can think of are the crazy dad stories. You know, the ones where the dad answers the door in a bathrobe or while sharpening knives.

Anyone else going to play the crazy dad role?

Thursday, July 16, 2009

The sun did it...

You think I would have learned after last year's debacle that I should put on sunscreen before heading out to the beach.

Apparently I didn't and now, after spending the afternoon lounging by the ocean, my flesh feels like it's on fire and getting hotter by the minute.

And my wife is showing me no sympathy.

I refuse to post photos of this one because I've gained a little weight since last year's topless photo and I'm feeling all self-conscious.

How about you...

What are you reading these days?

Next on my list:
  • The Apostle by Brad Thor
  • The Raw Shark Texts
  • Eyes Wide Open by Jud Wilhite

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Book #28...

Run For Your Life
James Patterson & Michael Ledwidge

Sooner or later you think I would stop reading Patterson books since I haven't been too pleased with them in some time. But I saw this one in the 7 day only pile at the library and I thought it might be better since it was part of a different series.

It's not a great book, but it's not horrible either. This seems to be the theme with the Patterson books. So I think I really will try something else.

Winky face, winky face...

Do yourself a favor and watch this.

In fact, do yourself a favor and watch the three previous Rocumentaries as well.

Book #27...

Deliberate Simplicity
Dave Browning

Dave is the founding pastor of Christ the King Community Church. I've never visited a CTK church, but I've heard good things from a few of our pastoral staff that have. And since we've got some major changes going down at our church these days I figured I would read a little about how some others are doing church.

The big idea? Do less, but be intentional and authentic, and do what you can to help it multiply.

It almost seems to echo some of the same things you would hear from a guy like Craig Groeschel, who has a similar concept where their church focuses only on a handful of things and they do those few things well.

Then it makes me wonder about my own church ministry?

How much do we/I over complicate things?

What would we/I do to simplify?

What few things could we/I do really well to have an impact on people/students in our community?

Things that make you go hmmm....


I'm in the middle of two weeks off. And instead of trying to make a run for someplace warmer we opted for spending last weekend in Seattle. And now we're back and sticking around until I head back to work next Thursday for an all day sermon planning meeting.

This staycation is good.

I've got a stack of books to read, a stack of movies to watch, guitars and amps to be played, and a great family to hang out with.

Today's agenda? Not sure. We're making it up as we go.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Vacation update 2.0...

There are still clouds in the sky.

I'm still working on some reading.

I've watched a movie.

I played Call of Duty 4 until 1Am last night.

It's a rough life.

You may now return to your regularly scheduled events.

Book #26...

The Strain
Guillermo Del Toro & Chuck Hogan

Occasionally I'll take a look through Amazon or Barnes & Noble to see what other people are reading. This book popped up on the list and seemed to be getting some pretty good reviews, so I headed on over to the library to pick it up.

First of all, it's a vampire book. Actually, it's the first book in a trilogy and I don't know if you can classify it as a typical vampire book.

The basic idea is that a vampire virus (think outbreak) has been deliberately unleashed on New York and a few key people must band together to end it.

It's not a book for the faint of heart, but it was a very compelling and entertaining read. The unfortunate part is that part 2 & 3 don't release until 2010 and 2011 respectively.

And if vampires aren't your thing...don't judge me.

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Book #25...

Soul Cravings
Erwin McManus

After the April trip down to Catalyst where I heard Erwin speak, I decided I would track down a few of his books. I have 3 or 4 already sitting on my shelf that I've read in years gone by, but I don't remember much about them.

Soul Cravings was broken down into short little entries, most of which were 2-3 pages long. The content seemed a little roller-coasterish to me, in the sense that some of the entries were really inspiring and would rattle around inside my head, while other entries seemed to be filler.

"Is it possible..."

As I read that phrase over and over, I couldn't help envision Erwin sitting on his stool trying to inspire a room full of people.

I love some of the questions he asks. He does seem to have a way of inspiring hope.

So, I guess I'll just say I'm of mixed minds about the book.

Monday, July 06, 2009

Vacation update 1,0...

It's day one and it's raining. Raining?!?! Vacation is supposed to be sunshine and beaches and I spent most of today on the couch. That's not right.

On the plus side I was able to get some reading done as Becca hovered around with Lego and Aidan was wreaking havoc at a friend's house. Erin? She was working.

If you're looking for some music, I'd recommend Zach Williams. Start with the song "James" and I don't think you'll be disappointed.

Sunday, July 05, 2009


I forgot to mention that it's VACATION TIME!!!

So, that last post will be the last bit of "shop talk" around here for the next couple of weeks. You'll have to settle for the occasional family photo and my ongoing reading list.

It won't blow your mind, but I'll blog anyways.

This fall...

Ok, a little background info might be needed here, so stick with me.

Our church has been trying for some time to come up with some sort of Sunday morning service "model" that works for the majority of our congregation. And last fall we decided to try out a format that sees us start our service with traditional worship elements (usually music) before going into some "family stuff" and the preaching, and then ending with some contemporary elements (usually music).

But it wasn't working. Some were mad that people were coming late to the service, even though we gave them permission to do so. Others were mad that some were leaving early, even though we gave them permission to do so. The music was too loud for some, and not loud enough for others. It was too new for some, and not new enough for others.

And in the midst of it people were leaving. Handfuls of people walking away because they couldn't take it any more.

As a leader in this church, it was hard to watch. And it was abundantly clear that something needed to be done now. It was time for something different.

So the staff huddled for the better part of May & June and we prayed. We dreamed. We vented. We talked. We planned.

We prepared a proposal and put ti into the hands of our elders who, in turn, prayed and dreamed and wrestled and talked about what to do.

The end result, which was officially approved on Thursday and was announced this morning, was that we need to go to a two service format. As of September 20th we will officially have two services.

Both will be led by the pastoral staff, but each service will look completely different. One will be "traditional" in an attempt to honor and connect with the aged among us. One will be "contemporary" in an attempt to honor and connect with the young among us.

So, what happens when you split a congregation in 2 and place them in a room that seats 1700? It feels empty and void. So, we're renovating the facility. Removing pews, changing the lighting, revamping the stage, updating the foyer and the "breezeway". All in an effort to bring people together. Shrink the gap that exists and foster relationship building.

This is deeper than a cosmetic makeover. It goes deep into the heart of who we are as a church and what we feel we need to become in order to continue to help people have their lives transformed by Jesus.

The leadership (staff & elders) of the church were so convinced of this that they alone on Thursday night pledged to cover over half of the bill for the renovations. That alone should show you how serious we are. And if you could hear the heart of those that sat around the table and discussed this, you would see that they get this.

So, it's time for a new chapter.

I'm stoked about this. It will make life look differently for all of us staffers in the fall, but I can't wait. I think we have an opportunity before us that is full of potential. I think we can become what we need to become in order to have an impact for Jesus in our city.

And as always, I'll keep you posted as we go.

Friday, July 03, 2009

Let's try this again...

There's a big announcement coming this Sunday during the morning service.

An announcement that comes after countless hours of prayer, planning, discussing and dreaming.

An announcement that will likely have ripple effects for years to come.

The drama is building isn't it?

I'll honestly say that this is the first time in 9 years of full time ministry that I've been a part of something like this. And I'm stoked!

So, if you're in the area, swing by the building and find out what's about to happen. Chances are you might want to be part of this.