Showing posts from May, 2005

what a wonderful day for golfing

Man, how nice have the last few days been for playing golf! I caught some grief about the repeated titles but hey, when it is a wonderful day to play, its a wonderful day to play. I played 9 holes today and shot a 41, not bad. I played with Peter and my buddy Daryl.

So, I preached today on 'Finding Treasure in the OT.' I pointed out four verses that are like treasure find because they are packed with truth potential to change lives. I felt like the message didn't go over as well as I had hoped and I was disappointed. If you go to my church, leave me a comment with your impression of the message - good and bad, stay anonymous if you want. Some objective outside feedback would really help me develop my preaching.

I am reading Blue Like Jazz right now, by Donald Miller. It is a good read about Christianity minus the religiosity that usually accompanies it. One of the things that has hit me is how Miller talks about his struggles to characterize his own faith to others. Have you…

marathon update

I have officially begun training for the 2005 Twin Cities Marathon, which I will be running on October 2. It is only 18 weeks away!

On Monday I bought my first pair of New Balance shoes. Then I went for a nice little 2.5 mile jog on Tuesday night. Thursday night it was a quick 1.5 mile run. I am trying to ease my way into training.

I can't believe that I am really doing this. It will be a great challenge and something to keep my physically focused and healthy. But it will be tough.

Nike has a sweet online training site if anyone is interested in doing some running training. The site has a running schedule, a training log and much more.

Check it out: link to Nike Running site

a fat congrat to one of my best buddies

I have a good friend who just completed something huge. He has been working hard for the last few months to accomplish something that has been a thorn to him for quite awhile. I am proud of his work and unfailing effort.

Jon is a good friend and fellow journeyman in the world of ministry. His job is tough - brining the light of Christ into a Native American community in south Minneapolis - but he is doing an awesome job.

I am lucky to have him and his wonderful wife Emily in my life as close friends. Here they are at the hospital when my daughter Isabelle was born.

Way to go pal!

what a wonderful/rotten day for golf

I played 9 holes today at Silver Springs Golf Club with Pastor Michael. I played pretty well, shooting a 45 with one birdie. Michael had some good shots as well.

It was a beautiful day for golf half the time with the vast blue sky, the birds chirping and the warm rays of the sun blazing down. We even saw two deer walking across the 5th tee box.

Then the rain would come. Every 30 minutes or so some big black clouds would come rumbling in. They would drop a 10 gallon bucket of rain on us as we hid underneath some trees. Then, just as quickly as they came, they would be gone and we'd be playing again. Weird.

I love golf. It is great to just get out on the course, enjoy the created world and be with friends. And I am extremely lucky to have a wife who lets me pursue such a time consuming hobby. My wife rocks! Thanks babe - you're the best.

wisdom on the dangers of blogging

I read this on Alex McManus' blog comments and was convicted by the wisdom in the words:

I read Dave's (Revolution 242) blog as well. That and Dominic's response re-sparked a recurring uncomfortable thought I've had for a while as I read more and more pastor's and leader's blogs.

I'm not saying this is the case with you Dave, and I'm not judging your choice of words or your right to your opinion, but sometimes it's real easy to forget how public our blogs are. Things and opinions spoken in honesty or off the cuff that should probably remain in personal journals or confidential conversations seem to seep pretty easily into our online presence.

I've read things written by pastors where they're critical of their church or other leaders or people in their congregations and I'm thinking "My God man! You're taking a huge relational and career risk in assuming those people will not find your blog and read this! Ever hear of Google?!?"…

what a wonderful day for golf

I played 18 holes today at Mississippi Dunes Golf Links in Cottage Grove, an awesome links style course settled in along the 'Mighty Mississip.' The greens were extremely fast and they were all elevated, sort of like flipped over cereal bowls, so the scoring was tough.

Maybe more practice at the course would help. But it was a blast. I played on a special that is so good I can't even tell you what it was.

I played with Joe Dworak from Bethel Seminary. He is a great guy who is thinking similar thoughts to me regarding church and what effecting life change in our communities of relationship really looks like. We had a great time playing and talking - and I beat him so that made it even better.

I shot a 49, 49 = 98 - yuck, but my arms are red now and I had a great time!

hotel rwanda

I just finished watching Hotel Rwanda. That is an incredible movie. Watching something like that, and then thinking about the money I wasted at Kicking and Screaming makes me want to kick and scream at something.

The movie is about a man in Rwanda that runs a hotel and who sheltered people from genocide. 1250+ people this man saves. There is nothing overtly spiritual about the movie, but Christ's call to compassion and reconciliation and the value of human life are huge themes. In 1994 nearly a million people where slaughtered in Rwanda by rebel and military forces trying to extinguish an ethnic group.

The movie depics the depths of evil and of hatred that can enter the human heart. At the end I found myself crying and wondering 1) "How could people do something that horrendous?" 2) "How would God have the Christian church, and particuarily, me, respond to a situation like that?" - Pray more.

The movie was so powerful. The man who runs the hotel is a model of wisd…

old school community pt. 2

The sun finally came out! Today was an awesome day. I started it off in preaching class, giving a talk about how when we focus on accomplishing God's work with only our own skills and abilities we will fail, but how God promises to always be with us if we will just rely on him. It went well.

Then I spent an hour outside at Dunn Bros. just reading Erwin McManus' book Seizing Your Divine Moment and chewing on what amazing thing God might be calling me to if I would just trust in him. Trust - easy to write, easy to deceive myself with, hard to really live out.

Then I spent the afternoon with Stephanie and the kids. Picked up some shoes to start the marathon training in. What was I thinking signing up for that? It will be good though, I am actually looking forward to it.

So when did the community piece happen? Well after stealing pizza from our neighbors Stephanie and I ate our own food and planned to go on a walk. (6:30 pm) Then another neighbor called to come on the walk with us. T…

old school community

I had a really great experience this evening. We got a call from a friend at church inviting us over for a BBQ. We went and had a blast hanging out with some people that we don't really know all that well in our church community. It was just standard stuff like chasing kids around, grilling burgers and playing bocce ball. But it was fun nonetheless.

What I really liked was the ease of relationship that was there. We all enjoyed each others company and friendship and the relating came easy. Wouldn't it be great to always spend our time in environments like that? But even a cursory glance at the life of Jesus shows that is not how he primarily spent his time.

But here is a thought: what if our spirit filled presence routinely brought with it peace and kindness and hospitality...all the things I enjoyed so much tonight. Spirit filled people bring Spirit filled actions and presence wherever they go. Are you that type of a person? What is the mood of the room and the people around yo…
seen in town near a local grocery store

feeling better, doing good

Yesterday I was exhausted and it affected me more than I at first realized. I was crabby and I didn't feel like taking on any projects. I was especially short with anyone who disagreed with me on stuff.

Today I feel much better. Maybe because the day has started so well. I hung out with Jacob who actually slept in until 7:15, yeah!, and then I went to Perkin's with Stephanie. It was a nice breakfast. It is my big goal right now to make sure she is one of the highest priorities in my life. That little list I made a couple days ago was very sobering and is not the way I want the rest of my life and marriage to look.

And even ministry is encouraging right now. Not for any particular reason, mainly just that I have been reminded who is in control of the whole deal. Jesus Christ asks me to carry only his burden and that is light. Paul wrote that we should 'cast all our anxiety on Jesus.' Jesus Christ is the foundation and strength and all I need in any circumstance. It is his…

huggies diapers suck

Seriously, huggies diapers suck. My wife and I hate them. Everytime we get stuck buying them our kids end up peeing out the side of them during the night. Then they wake up all sticky and their clothes need to be changed. DO NOT BUY HUGGIES! Anyway, I am going to email them about it right now.

what we can learn from our schedules

It no longer amazing me when I hear the reasons people give for missing a church service, a small group, or any other ministry experience. I have figured out that most people just refuse to put 'church stuff' at the top of their list. Now, obviously they won't come right out and say it because that seems like it would be blasphemous. But you cannot mute the voice of your behavior.

Everytime we choose to do one thing, we are actively choosing not to do something else. Andy Stanley talks about this in a short but wonderful read called, Choosing to Cheat. He says when we take one course of action we cheat another.

I think it is time people stop cheating the church, stop cheating the Christian community they are a part of, and stop cheating God. And no matter what kind of tricks we want to do in an attempt to get around it our day planners and refridgerator calendars show us what we value and what we are most willing to cheat.

We come up with excuses like 'it is a season of l…

what a rotten day for golf

Today I played in the Trout Lake Camp charity tournament at Oak Glen Golf Course in Stillwater.

It rained most of the time and so I was cold and wet. Before I left Stephanie my wife told me to grab an extra short for my bag and I didn't listen. When will I learn? But I still had fun. I played with Joel Haakenson, Peter Corniea, and Chad Anderson. It was fun just being around those guys, laughing, and hitting some balls. I hit some nice drives and some horrible 80-120 yrd. shots.

A question popped into my mind, "What would happen if the majority of people knew as much about God as they do about their business or profession: i.e. - investing, building codes, what details a 'buyer's market, the latest teaching paradigm, or working with html and flash?'" I am not ragging on anyone- there is alot of good to know and families and jobs would fall apart if people didn't learn the intricicies of their feilds.

But what if we made being an expert on God first, and bein…

peanut pain and some other random thoughts

I want to report how impressed I am with the customer service of Fisher peanuts. I sent them an email last night regarding the cut I received while opening a jar of their product. The email was not very serious, but they responded promptly and with respect.

I know that the cut is nothing to make a big deal of, but the company offered me some compensation by sending me a coupon for a replacement jar of peanuts. The woman who responded to my email was personable and friendly.

Tonight Stephanie and I played about 30 hands of Rook with our friends Brandt and Stephanie. They are great people who are a really joy to be around. Brandt is finishing school and Stephanie teaches at a charter school. We are looking forward to spending more time with them this summer. Don't be jealous P & E!

Sunday I'm preaching on 'Hearing God in an MP3 World' and looking at how we can orient our lives in such a way that we become GodPods to receive all he has to offer us in guidance and convers…

bear in town

This big beast showed up in Monticello on Wednesday. I got a call from a guy at church telling me to take the kids and go check it out. Apparently the bear just climbed up in a residential area tree and was snoozing away. A lot of people were around checking him out. I probably got about 12 feet from the tree to snap the picture. It is amazing how thrill deprived people are. Going to see the sleeping bear was way too exciting.

Maybe that says something about our experiance with God. The need to get thrills elsewhere. Shouldn't following Christ be thrilling? Think about how people flocked to see Jesus perform miracles. Don't you think it was pretty amazing when Paul raised that sleeping boy from the dead in Acts? Or when the jail broke open and Peter walked out? When God is moving through the live sof his people we don't need sleeping bears to get us excited. Just being in the midst of God is enough.

Acts 2 living

I have had some thoughts recently about what life would be like if I invested in an apartment complex with some friends, we all moved in and then strategically started evangelizing different renters. We could hold Bible study and worship in a community room each day. It would be sort of monastic but with non-believers right next door. Then if we ever needed anything we could walk across the hall and just borrow it. Living out Acts 2 would become the norm and people just might be attractive to this new type of community that is functioning around them.

revolutionary baptism Acts 2 style

Baptism as the first step in Christian obedience is not something I have thought about before, but I was struck by what Ed Young, Jr. had to say:

"It's funny how people will become a Christian and then make all kinds of excuses why they can't be baptized, Young said. I talked about the basics of baptism, answered some of the most common questions people have about baptism and its significance to the Christian life. I told the crowd that when someone balks at this first step of obedience in the Christian life, I have to wonder if they are really a Christian. We decided that if we provided them with an opportunity to respond immediately, they wouldn't have time to make up excuses.

He said this in an article about a recent baptism at his church, Fellowship Church in Grapevine, TX where 515 people were baptized in spontaneous fashion on four campuses during services April 30 and May 1.

Read the entire article: Link

It is a good thought I think. I beleive that baptism is the …

thoughts regarding the revolution and quarry service on May 8

Sunday I preached a message about spiritual entropy. The main pint being that when we do not carefully monitor our spiritual lives they will begin to breakdown. It framed it in the context of our spiritual lives as a system, and entropy as the inevitable and steady deterioration of that system. It was a good message.

Some of the things I stressed were the need to:
1. Live a passionate live worthy of passing on to the next generation
2. Living a barbaric Christian life and not settling for a civilized religious experience
3. Being shaped by God's word rather than the world
4. Getting off the bench and serving in the church

All of these things are critical if we want to keep a vibrant, vital relationship with Jesus. We get too side-tracked by life (myself included) and we forget about God and maintaining that relationship with him. I don't ever want to settle for faith - I want a risk taking, revolution bringing relationship with God. I want all my talents and abilities to be used by…

what a crazy day

I don't usually blog about my personal life, but I just have to say that today was something else.

It started with me driving around aimlessly at 6:30 AM, arriving at places and wondering why I drove there. I ended up at Caribou (of course) and spent some time working on my message for Sunday, May 8.

Then I loaded up the family in the 99 Honda Civic and we drove to Maple Grove for the city wide garage sales. Man, people have a ton of junk and the huge sales are never that huge. We ended up buying a red Flintstone type car for Jacob to run around in. And then we got Izzi some stuff. It was completely ridiculous. I ended up using a hockey jacket to tie the trunk door down. It was a total Bohemian thing to do.

Then in the afternoon Stephanie had a Tupperware Party and so I was with the kids.

Izzi peed all over when I was changing her diaper and then later she spit up all over my shirt. It was quite interesting.

That's all for now.

ps - I wish I was golfing!

cinco de mayo party

I guess that sometimes you're right and sometime's you're not. Well, last night I thought I was wrong about Cinco de Mayo not being Mexico's Independance Day, but I wasn't. That day is September 16. Here is the history of Cinco de Mayo:

The holiday of Cinco De Mayo, The 5th Of May, commemorates the victory of the Mexicans over the French army at The Battle Of Puebla in 1862. It is primarily a regional holiday celebrated in the Mexican state capital city of Puebla and throughout the state of Puebla, with some recognition in other parts of the Mexico, and especially in U.S. cities with a significant Mexican population. It is not, as many people think, Mexico's Independence Day, which is actually September 16.

Cinco De Mayo Facts

Last night we celebrated this great traditon at our friend's Jesse and Andrea's house.

It was a fun night that included Peter and I getting beat badly in badmiton a couple times, before turning things around and then, of course, the g…

the person who must

A few people have given me crap about copying posts from other blogs instead of creating everything from my own mind. Well, one of the reasons I love blogging so much is because it is a chance for me to spread what I'm reading and what is influencing me, with a mass audience. I think that if God is using some piece of material to touch me he could probably use it to touch someone else. So read on faithful friends and leave me some comments so we can get a dialogue going on this stuff.

In an great, but very brief article, Alex McManus talks about the need for Christian men and women to be people of 'must.' Here is a snippet of that conversation

'I began my response to your questions with an emphasis on the person who is compelled by love to do whatever is required to reach people for the Kingdom. This is a far weightier issue, in my view, than is asking what structures are necessary to reach people.

The person who is compelled by love to reach the outsider is the right…

hearing and discerning

Why does it sometimes, actually more often than not, seem so hard to hear God's voice and discern his will. Recently I had an inner battle that involved the chance to give something away. I wanted to, and it seemed right, but on the other hand, it may have been unwise and the counsel I got from godly people confirmed that it might be too streching. So I was stuck: wanting to please God and bless someone, and wanting to please God and be a good steward. That is a hard place to be.

It happens all over the course of life: where to live, what church to go to, what car to drive, where to work, how much income to live on, how much to give away, where to plug in and use my gifts, where to go to school. Over and over again there's the question: "What would God want me to do?"

I wonder if I miss the signal, if I'm closed off to his voice, or if my life is just too loud to hear. I don't know. I'll keep searching...

living in community

I am continually reminded that there is no greater joy than to live in close community with people that you love and who love you back. This weekend the YP at the Quarry and his wife came and stayed at our home Friday and Saturday night. We had a great time visiting with them, eating meals and sharing our lives. Plus, an extra hand with the kids is always nice.

Then Sunday after church a group of about 20 adults and boat loads of kids wiped out the GodFather's Pizza buffet in Otsego. It was a lot of fun rearranging tables and laughing and helping the kids play video games. Plus, a woman who has been absent from our community was there with her two girls and we just got to love on them and welcome them back into God's family.

I could write on and on about what it means to me to be with people who love God and love others. It is life giving and I wouldn't trade it for money, power, or anything else.

I will never understand how people, esp. Christ-following people, could let a…