Friday, September 30, 2011

Cast of Characters - Max Lucado

I was recently asked to review Cast of Characters by Max Lucado, so here is what I thought.

Max Lucado is clearly one of the most influential and accomplished Christian authors in years and this book shows why that is.

He has a writing style that just draws you in. This is a great book about the stories of perfectly normal people that were used in amazing ways by a totally perfect God. It is a book that is great for any seasoned or new Lucado fan. I came away from this book being encouraged by the type of people that God has chosen to use.

If you are struggling to understand how, or if, God can still use you because mistakes, poor choices or bad decisions in your life you need to read this book. You are part of an impressive cast of characters that God has used throughout history.

The publisher has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book or advanced reading copy through BookSneeze®

Thursday, September 29, 2011

New Website

I am excited to announce that I have a brand new website that I will be moving all of my blogging and communication to.

This site will be left up for a little while but will eventually be taken down.

Visit the new website, WWW.ADAMLEGG.COM

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Choosing To Hope

It was at my desk in my office in a multi-million dollar building when I first heard the news via Twitter.

It was a shocking image. A visual picture that my Americanized, middle-class mind wanted to quickly erase. It seemed more like an image from a Hollywood movie than an actual reality.

Were mothers really arriving at the border between Somalia and Kenya, after a journey that took weeks, with their dead babies strapped to their backs?

Was this really happening? Today? In 2011?

It was. And it still is.

An entire world away from my comfortable life in Anchorage, Alaska there are millions of people that are starving and dying because of the worst famine the world has seen in years

Millions? How can that be? My entire state doesn't even have a million people, yet there are SEVERAL million people? Starving? And dying?

There are reports that the roads to the borders are lined with people that have died on the journey, people that just wanted something that few of us here in America ever think twice about: food and water.

The more I read about this situation the more that I knew that I had to help. But how? How can someone in Anchorage, Alaska, nearly 8,000 miles away, help? How can anything I do even begin to make a difference?

And that's when it hit me. If I do nothing, it is guaranteed that I will have no impact. However, if I do something, no matter how insignificant it may seem, there is always the hope that change will occur.

I am choosing to hope. Will you do the same?

2 Ways 2 Help:

Spread The Word
: Use Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, Google+ and blogs to get the word out. There are far too many people that are unaware of the severity of this situation.

Give: Here is a list of organizations that you can give to that are making a difference in Somalia today.
Oxfam: A $50 donation will provide 200 people a day's supply of clean water.
Oxfam Website

One Day’s Wages
: ODW has recently launched a “Horn of Africa Relief Fund” to provide immediate humanitarian response.
One Day's Wages Website

World Vision International: Has been working to fight hunger in this region for a long time and is positioned to make an immediate impact.
World Vision Website

Mercy Corps: Mercy Corps has teams in Ethiopia, Somalia and Kenya.
Mercy Corps Website

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Saddened by the death of John Stott today, but thankful for the impact that his life and teaching has had on me and many other.

Here is one of my favorite quotes from him.
"What, then, is the biblical basis for social concern? Why should Christians get involved? In the end there are only two possible attitudes which Christians can adopt towards the world: Escape and Engagement...'Escape' means turning our backs on the world in rejection, washing our hands of it ... and steeling our hearts against its agonized cries for help. In contrast, 'engagement' means turning our faces towards the world in compassion, getting our hands dirty, sore and worn in its service, and feeling deep within us the stirring of the love of which cannot be contained."
Thank You for being someone that challenged us to engage our world.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Vacation With A Purpose

As recent blogs have stated, I have been compelled to view my resources as a tool to use, rather than objects to consume. As my wife and I try and spread that through all areas of our life the idea came to us to try and do that with our upcoming vacation as well.

What if our vacations were NOT all about us? What if they could be used as a resource to bless others, while still having time for us to rest and enjoy family?

Thus was born our "Vacation With A Purpose" idea. We have decided to take at least 10% of what we are spending on the entire vacation and keep that on us in cash at all times and look for people, organizations, churches or non-profits to stop and randomly bless.

Just thinking about the ways that God could use this small act is exciting.

I will report back after our vacation (August 15th or so) and let you know the results! I am already praying that God would change us through this process.

Are you going on a vacation soon? Would you be willing to try the "Vacation With A Purpose" concept?

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Where is my heart?

This morning I was reading from the book "Common Prayer: A Liturgy for Ordinary Radicals" and I came across this quote from Shepherd of Hermas, whose second-century writings were cherished by early Christians.

“You know that you who are God’s servants are living in a foreign country, for your own city-state is far away from this City-state. Knowing, then, which one is to be your own City-state, why do you acquire fields, costly furnishings, buildings, and frail dwellings here? Instead of fields, buy for yourselves people in distress in accordance with your means. It is far, far better to buy this kind of field, property, or building, which is quite different and which you can find again in your own City when you come home. This ‘extravagance’ is beautiful and holy; it brings no grief and no fear; it brings nothing but joy.”

I then went to do some reading from the Bible. I am re-reading Matthew in preparation for an upcoming series at Church, and what do I read today?

"But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." - Matthew 6:20-21

I struggle with things like materialism and consumerism. I know that nothing I buy, acquire, make or purchase here is of real value. I know that what is eternal is what is important. Yet what I know with my mind is not often enough lived out with my life.

I have bought into the "better than most" lie. In regards to giving? Probably better than most. In regards to our time? Probably better than most. In regards to helping others? Probably better than most. But is better than most the goal? Is that enough? It sure doesn't feel like it.

If where my treasure is truly defines where my heart is, then far too often my heart is focused on me.

Where is your heart?

My prayer is that we would be people that, "Instead of fields, buy for yourselves people in distress in accordance with your means." May we use our time, talents, treasure and touch towards the things that truly matter and may our heart be found in things that last.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

God seems to know what He is doing

Tonight I went to Blockbuster Video to rent a documentary (i LOVE documentaries). After browsing their selection for a few minutes I decided on a movie called The Bridge that I have wanted to see for a while. I grabbed the video, checked out and headed home.

Once home I realized that I had somehow NOT grabbed The Bridge and instead ended up with a movie called Born Into Brothels. There are very few documentaries that I don't enjoy so I decided not to return the movie, but instead to watch it.

Within minutes of the opening I was SO glad I kept the movie.

It is a documentary about a photographer who goes into Calcutta and teaches photography to the children in the area. She gives them cameras and teaches them the basics of photography. This art quickly becomes an escape and a way out of the slums and the prostitution that many had been in.

The creativity and talent that these children showed was amazing. Having their own camera and being able to "create" was such a point of pride for them, you could see the joy on their faces as they used their new talent.

As I watched this movie I got to thinking about the 3 or 4 older digital cameras that we have lying around our house and I wondered if they could be used for something like this. I went online and found a great list of organizations on the Kids With Cameras website and I found several that were seeking cameras for similar projects around the world. I selected one, got their address and tomorrow will be mailing a box of cameras to an organization that will be able to use them to make a real difference in the lives of underprivileged children around the world.

I am thrilled that a "mistake" at the movie store led to a great opportunity to share what we have and hopefully provide a skill and hope for a child somewhere.

God seems to know what He is doing.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Happy Independence Day

Today my wife and I ventured into Downtown Anchorage for the annual 4th of July celebration. While we were there we saw, among the thousands of people, a Sudanese family wearing traditional Sudanese clothing, a Latino man selling empanadas from his van, a Samoan family BBQing chicken at their food booth, a Native Alaskan selling handmade crafts, and lots of other cultures that were well represented. Seeing the vast diversity downtown made the reality of independence and freedom hit home for me. One of the greatest things about our country is the idea of "America." The belief that this is a place that you can be who you are, and become whatever you want is a powerful one. I am glad that despite different political, religious and personal views we can gather, celebrate and enjoy the freedom that we all have as Americans. Happy 4th of July!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Isaiah 41:10

Fear not [there is nothing to fear], for I am with you; do not look around you in terror and be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen and harden you to difficulties, yes, I will help you; yes, I will hold you up and retain you with My [victorious] right hand of rightness and justice.

I was doing some reading this morning from the Amplified Bible and came across this verse. I absolutely love the way this version translates the text.

There was one part in particular that stood out to me. Right in the middle of the text it says...

I will strengthen and harden you to difficulties

The process of "hardening" is one that I have only recently become aware of.

My wife and I have a few raised flower beds at our home where we plant flowers, plants and a few vegetables. In Alaska there is such a drastic change in seasons between winter and summer that if you just go and buy any plant, especially too early in the season, and put it in the ground, there is a good chance that it will not survive. Why? Because it hasn't been "hardened" for the elements that it is going into.

Whenever we are buying early season plants we always ask if they have been hardened. And if the answer is yes, we know there is a good chance of survival.

In the same way, this verse says that God is "hardening" us for difficulties.

One of the beautiful things about hardening plants is that it is the responsibility of the gardener (God), not the plant (us). Our only role is to yield to the work of the Gardener and grow where He plants us, knowing that when the storms of life come, we can survive them because our Gardener has already prepared us for them.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Regret #4

4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.

We were designed for community.

We were created by a God who, in His very nature, is communal. Three in one. Not alone.

Our design by "Community" is what drives our desire for community.

We were not designed to do life alone. At the core, we all know that. And if that is the case, why do so many of us isolate? Why do we buy the lie that we can "go it alone"?

Is it because real, authentic, community, is not easy? It takes me being willing to be transparent. It takes me allowing people to see the real me; mistakes, faults and all. It takes me allowing people to speak into the rough areas of my life.

Real community involves me being honest about who I am with others who are willing to be honest about who they are.

And that can be very scary.

So what do we do? We settle for acquaintances and shallow friendships. We fill our lives with other people just like us: People who entertain us but never challenge us. People who we can spend time with but who, if we lose them, we feel no real sense of loss because they are easily replaced. And we spend years and years filling our lives with "people" but we seldom experience real "community".

And when we get to the end of our life and we look back on who we "did life with" we remember the real friends, the ones that really mattered, and we wonder why we didn't invest more time in those relationships.

Don't let this be a regret of yours. Put in the time and effort to build community with people that really matter. It's what you were created for.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Regret #3

Today we look at Regret #3 in our list of the "Top 5 Regrets" that people have on their deathbed.

3. I wish I'd had the courage to express my feelings.

Last fall my wife and I took a course at ChangePoint called “The Heart and Life of Every Follower.” It is based around Chip Dodd’s book “Voice of the Heart” and was taught by Lee Hudson (our worship pastor) and Jeff Schulte from Sage Hill Institute.

I have been through several classes and courses at church, but this one was different. I normally finish a class feeling like it was “worth it.” I am a little better husband, a little smarter with my money, a little more knowledgeable about the Bible, etc…etc…etc….

But at the end of this course I didn’t feel that way. I didn’t think that it was “worth it.” I felt like it was 100% necessary, completely crucial and totally critical that I was there. There is not a day that has gone by in the 6 months that have passed since the end of the class that I have not gone back to what I discovered there.

What did this class deal with? Well, it dealt with a lot of things. But mostly, it dealt with “feelings.”

Feelings are something that we all have, sort of our “natural reaction” to life. When a doctor does a reflex test on your knee, and he taps your knee cap, your leg kicks out. You didn’t do anything for that to happen, it just reacted. The same is true of all of us. When life happens, we react.

The problem is that we believe certain feelings are “bad,” even though we all experience them and often they seem to just “happen.”

In the class we focused on 8 key feelings: Anger, Fear, Hurt, Sad, Lonely, Guilt, Shame & Gladness.

These are feelings that every person reading this blog has experienced. A lot.

When you read that list do you feel like some of those are “bad” feelings? So did I. And what do we do with those? Well, we try and limit the “bad” feelings and “grow” the good feelings. So I try and be less angry, less fearful, less hurt, etc…. There is only one problem with that approach: LIFE.

The reality is that we will all experience Anger, Fear, Hurt, Sadness, Loneliness, Guilt, Shame and Gladness, so instead of trying to get rid of those feelings or “grow” past them, why don’t we realize that those are part of life and instead look at how we respond to those feelings?

When I am angry, does it turn into rage/depression, or passion? Those are very different things.

When I am hurt does it turn into resentment? Or do I allow healing to happen and courage to grow?

When I am sad does it turn into self-pity? Or do I accept it and allow myself to be “OK with what is not OK”?

When I feel guilty does it turn into toxic shame? Or do I experience freedom and forgiveness?

And that list goes on… and on… and on….

What I am learning is that all of these feelings are good and healthy, and we all experience them, daily.

This has been an incredibly healing and freeing process for my wife and me. If you talk to my wife she will tell you the “Adam” before the class is not the same as the “Adam” after the class.

One of the biggest ways that I am changing is that I realize that these feelings are good for us to have. So when my wife is sad, or fearful, I no longer try and rescue her. I used to see her that way and come in and try to “make everything better.” The problem is that never lets her be honest about where she is and what she is feeling. So instead of “having the answer” I let her be, knowing that there is more victory in her “feeling” than in me “rescuing.”

It has also caused us to look at things in our past and see ways that we have been hurt by people and see how we dealt with it… or didn’t deal with it. It was interesting how at times we are both were people who would rather bury it, not deal with our feelings and move on, hoping that the situations would get better and those feelings would just go away. However the truth is, when we sit and talk about those hurts, there are still A LOT of feelings right below the surface. They haven’t left… and they never will, unless we are willing to address the feelings, acknowledge the hurt and let healing happen.

So, what does this have to do with the regret listed above? When I saw that the regret was “I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings”, I realized that before I can truly express my feelings to others, I have to first be willing to be honest about how I am really feeling to myself. If I can’t be honest with myself, I am certainly not going to be honest with you.

I believe that this is such a common regret because we have become a culture that so often self-medicates that we have forgotten how to "feel."

That is the journey that my wife and I are on, and it is beautiful, and messy, and painful, but what we are experiencing because of it makes it all worth it.

Be willing to “feel” life, and be honest about your feelings.

It isn’t easy, it can be full of fear, but that is OK. Being honest about your feelings isn’t going to kill you, even if it feels like it is going to.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Regret #2

Today we look at Regret #2 in the list of the "Top 5 Regrets" that people have on their deathbed

2. I wish I didn't work so hard.

This is probably the regret that I have heard the most. We all know that at the end of life no one wishes that they had spent more time at the office.

This is going to be a shorter blog because I think this is a simple subject.

It comes down to this...what is important to you?

I have known several friends that have lost parents. I have had friends that lost parents who had very little money but invested their time and life into their children. Their kids remember them being at all of their sporting events, all of their school performances and always being present in their lives. They didn't go on big vacations, instead they went camping and that sort of thing. When their parents passed away they had amazing memories and knew that they were loved and a priority for their parents.

I have also had friends that have lost parents who spent their life working. The irony is that they spent their life working because they believed that providing a "quality" life was what was best. They wanted their kids to be able to do what they wanted, and have what they needed, and experience amazing things. And they did. However at the end of the day they would trade the inheritance and vacations for more memories of time together.

Your friends and families don't need your money and your success and your ability, they need you.

Are jobs important? Yes. Is money important? Yes. But not at the expense that we pay for it.

Your time is your most important resource, how will you spend it? Your answer to that question will determine whether this regret will be with you at the end of your life.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Regret #1

As I mentioned yesterday, I am going to be blogging through the list of the "Top 5 Regrets" that people have on their deathbed.

Today is Regret #1.

1. I wish I'd had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.

Doesn't this hit home? You are told from a young age you need to be faster, smarter, stronger, better looking, have more money, consume more, own this, listen to that, etc...etc...etc.... Most of us were all raised to believe that who we are isn't good enough. This wasn't (in most cases) done by our parents, it happened because of the world that we live in.

This belief has permeated our culture, and it is deadly. The list of regrets shows that this is such an issue that many people take this all the way to their grave.

I think that the main point behind this regret deals with our identity, and realizing who we are and what we were created to be.

Why do we feel that who we are isn't enough and that we need to become something different in order to be accepted?

Have you ever been watching TV and a commercial for cologne or soda or tires or cigarettes comes on and it says, "You don't need our product because you are great just the way you are!" No? Me either. Why? Because us not being content with who we were created to be is a billion dollar industry.

So who are we, really?

"I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them." Psalm 139:14-16

This verse tells us that we were fearfully and wonderfully made, and we were made by a Creator that knows us, and designed us, and formed us to be exactly as we are.

If I really believed that I was created to be me, exactly as I am, with no faking and no pretending, how would that change things? If every part of my personality and appearance was crafted and formed for a reason, why would I want to change that?

When we are who we were created to be, there is freedom. However trying to be someone else, or something different, is exhausting and always leaves us unfulfilled.

If I believe that I was created by a loving God, when I try and be someone or something else, isn't that like saying, "God, thanks a lot, but I think that I can do this better" or "God, I think You made a mistake with me."

My dissatisfaction with myself is less about me and more about my doubt that God is really good, and really knows what He is doing.

What if you, the real you, with your quirks and weird habits and strange thoughts are exactly what God wants.

What if God likes you? Just as you were created.

If you and I would find our identity in who we already are, and who we were created to be, rather than allowing society to define our identity, we would find that our view of our self would change greatly.

Why? Because we were fearfully and wonderfully made by a God that knew exactly what He was doing when He created us. Because of "Who" created us, we can be confident, and secure in who we are.

Pastor and Author Craig Groeschel says
“Becoming obsessed with what people think about me is the quickest way to forget what God thinks about me.”

We have a decision to make. We can choose to believe what God says about us, or we can choose to believe what our culture says. If we continue to listen to our culture, we will continue to take this regret to our graves.

Top 5 Regrets

I recently read a post from a nurse that has worked for years with people who are dying. She posted the top 5 regrets that people have on their deathbed.

As I read through each regret I had the idea to blog about each of these from a spiritual standpoint.

So, for the next several days I will be going through each of these regrets and looking at how I struggle with these same things and I will be trying to see what the Bible has to say about them.

Here are the top 5 regrets that people have on their deathbed.

1. I wish I'd had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.

2. I wish I didn't work so hard.

3. I wish I'd had the courage to express my feelings.

4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.

5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.

Do those hit home for you? I know that they did for me.

Join me over the next several days as I try and take steps toward a life void of regret.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Francis Chan: Erasing Hell Promo

The promotional video for Francis Chan's next book "Erasing Hell" was released today and to put it mildly, it looks AMAZING! WATCH IT HERE

Chan is one of my favorite authors and speakers in modern Christianity. His authenticity and genuine passion for who God is has been challenging and encouraging to me.

The book comes out this July and I will certainly post a review here once it is out.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Bruno Mars: the Minor Prophet

I recently read through the book of Hosea so when I saw this post over on the MH Eternal site I had to read it.

They make a good point that Bruno Mars' song "Grenade" is a good modern illustration of the book of Hosea.

Normally I read things like this and I just roll my eyes. Too often we try and tie secular things to the Holy and it ends up being a BIG stretch. But there is something different about this one.

First, I LOVE this song. It's catchy as heck. Are the lyrics a little cheesy? Sure, but I don't even care.

Hosea is an amazing story about a totally unfaithful woman named Gomer with "questionable morals" who is taken and loved unconditionally by Hosea. Despite the unfaithfulness of Gomer, Hosea remained faithful.

As I read the lyrics to Grenade and remembered this story, I know...this actually does kind of fit. Is it a total retelling? No, obviously not. But if you were teaching on this and were looking for a modern illustration, I think it would work pretty great.

Read the article over on MH Eternal that I linked above for their entire post and the lyrics to the song as well as another brief recap of Hosea.

Also, here is a link to my favorite cover of this song on YouTube.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

...for the sake of the Gospel

"I do all this for the sake of the gospel..." 1 Corinthians 9:23

I was challenged by the message at ChangePoint this past Sunday (listen here). We are going through a series in 1 Corinthians and this week Jim Capaldo spoke on the section of scripture that contains the verse above.

If you look at the life that Paul lived, the people that he served, the punishment that he endured you have to ask yourself...Why? And his answer to the question of why, is simply..."for the sake of the Gospel."

What I have been struggling with is not Paul's answer, but the fact that my answer is not the same. I struggle with the fact that my desire to serve people, to go overseas, to make a difference in this world tends to have very little to do with "the sake of the Gospel."

It generally has to do with:

- My desire to be a good person
- My desire to serve people
- My desire to "be a good citizen"
- My desire to contribute to the good in the world
- My desire to give my life away
- My desire to experience new things
- My desire to contribute something positive to the world

It would be a long list before "for the sake of the Gospel" was there. Why?

Well, it isn't because I don't believe that the Gospel is worth it and it isn't because I don't believe the Gospel is true, because my life has been radically changed because of the power and truth of the Gospel. Instead, I think that it could be a few reasons.

First, I would rather just serve and love people and not tell them about Jesus, but live a positive life and hope that someday they ask me why and I get to tell them. I used to think that was OK, but I am more and more being convinced that I use that as a cheap excuse to not tell people about Jesus...ever. I really enjoyed a recent article in Relevant Magazine that asked the question: Are you in danger of neglecting evangelism in your passion for Social Justice? And I have to, sadly, answer that question...Yes. That is exactly what I do. My desire to serve and give my life away is often greater than my desire to tell people about Jesus. The reality is that serving their current need and ignoring their eternal one is no service at all! Ugh. How much does that suck?!

Second, I don't feel qualified. I think that there are other, more gifted people out there who will do a far better job of telling people about Jesus than I remain quiet. I have really been challenged in this area recently. I feel like I have a good understanding and grasp of the Gospel. I love reading the Word (especially recently) and I love sharing with people what I am learning. But when it comes to people I don't changes. I am nervous and self conscious.

During Lent Sherri and I were reading through the Gospels and the one story that has stuck with me the most is in John chapter 9. Jesus had just healed a blind man on the Sabbath, and the Pharisees questioned the man that was healed and began to accuse Jesus and ask questions of this man. Then something amazing happens. Talking about Jesus, they say..
"We know this man is a sinner."

They just accused the man who gave him sight, and his response is awesome.
"Whether he is a sinner or not, I don’t know. One thing I do know. I was blind but now I see!"

In that one sentence he says something that has been challenging me. He says, I don't have answers to all of your questions, but I know this. I was blind...I encountered Jesus...and now I see. The end.

This verse has shown me that the ability to tell people about Jesus doesn't come from theological training. It doesn't come from years of Bible study. It doesn't come from some cerebral ascent that helps us gain wisdom. It comes from an encounter with Jesus.

Because of how I have been changed by Jesus, I am equipped to tell people about Jesus. My story, your story, our story, of how we have been changed, is enough.

So, as I wrap this up I am realizing that this is really all about this: People have 2 needs. A current, often practical need (food, clean water, money) and an eternal need. Both of these needs are important. I, too often, want to only focus on helping the first need while leaving the second need for someone else to deal with. The reality is that if I only meet the current need and ignore the eternal need, have I really loved them? Really?

The list of desires that I posted above are all good. But if they are the end, I have come short. However, if I can become a person that desires to meet the current, physical needs of people and point them to the only person that can meet their eternal need, then when people ask why I do it, I will be able to honestly answer..."For the sake of the Gospel."

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

HAHA! This is from The Sacred Sandwich (I saw it on God Entranced)

Wednesday, April 27, 2011




After reading the above article about Chinese Christians being detained for gathering for Easter services it reminded me of the freedoms that I, too often, take for granted here in America.

For our Easter services at ChangePoint I was free to print and distribute invitations, posters, flyers and bulletins, as well as electronically market our services to tens of thousands of people. The only thing that I feared was email bounce-back or people asking to be removed from our mailing list. No threat of persecution, no chance of government authorities detaining me and no risk.

If I am honest, I went through this entire Easter season and never once thought about the Christians around the world that were risking their lives to gather and celebrate our risen King.

Father, forgive me for being so focused on "me" and "my church" that I forget to remember your church world-wide.

Monday, April 25, 2011

Reflections on Lent 2011

Lent is always a special season and this year was no different.

Now that the 40 days have been completed and we have celebrated the resurrection of our King, I look back on Lent and reflect on the real highlights.

This year there is one practice that stands head and shoulders above the rest. Sherri and I decided that we would read through the four Gospels during Lent. This ended up being one of, if not the, richest times in our 5 1/2 years of marriage. Each evening we would sit down and read two or three chapters and then spend a good amount of time discussing what we read. There were several nights when these discussions lasted for over an hour.

We would discuss our thoughts about what we read, our beliefs, dis-beliefs and questions. Then we would take the time to wrestle through it all. It was often messy, but always good.

We enjoyed this format so much that we have decided to keep it going. We are going to continue through the New Testament and then loop back to the OT.

Taking time to, not just read the word with my wife, but also discuss it and have time to talk through it has been amazing. I believe that our lives and our marriage will reap the benefits from Lent 2011 for a long time thanks to this spiritual discipline that we took up.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Good Friday

Today I am reminded that Good Friday is all about the love and provision of God.

It is about a Love that went beyond anything that we can imagine, to prove itself to us and a Provision that did something for us that we never could have done on our own.

Today I am thankful for a God that didn't wait for me to love Him. Instead, He acted first. He demonstrates his own love for us in this: that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Oh, How deep the Father's love for us.

Friday, March 11, 2011


This coming Tuesday, March 15th the new Rob Bell book "Love Wins" will be released.

If you have missed the firestorm on Twitter, Facebook, Blogs and the Web, this book, that is not even released yet, is already causing quite the controversy.

Bell, a known teacher and author released a video that would make one believe that this book will take a Universalist approach to hell. And of course, that has many mainstream evangelical Christians fuming! John Piper even sent a twitter post titled "Farewell Rob Bell."

I am saving my feedback and input until after I actually read the book

However...I do call DIBS on the blog title "Hells Bells" once the book has been released.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Because Jesus Was There

For Lent my wife and I are taking up reading the Gospels. We are reading through them together in the mornings and individually at night. So over the next 40 days we will each read through all 4 Gospels twice. Pretty great idea, right?

Well, today is Day 1 and we read Matthew 1 - 3.

What really jumped out to me today was where the Magi saw the star, followed it and went to worship Jesus.

So what? That doesn't seem very "deep."

Well, hear me out.

They didn't go to worship because they heard that the stable was nice.

They didn't go to worship because they saw a slick looking high-gloss poster at a coffee shop in Jerusalem.

They didn't go to worship because they were invited by a friend.

They went to worship because Jesus was there.

In today's world we try and make "church" about a lot of things. The songs, the teaching, the children's ministry, the greeters and the bulletin, when the reality is that if "church" is about anything other than Jesus, we have missed the point.

So that is my prayer for my wife, for myself, and for anyone celebrating Lent. That this season would be all about Jesus. Nothing more. Nothing less.

Thursday, January 6, 2011


...if you aren't reading Eugene Cho's Blog!

He is an exciting, honest, passionate and authentic pastor from Seattle, Washington that is a HUGE encouragement to me!

His posts are real and almost always force me towards change.

Read his blog HERE

Monday, January 3, 2011

How do they do it?

So, when I started this blog I had very good intentions of keeping it updated on a regular basis. And then I started working at a church. And then the Fall ministry season started. And then it was Christmas Eve.


I now have a million times more respect for church communications people who are able to keep regularly updated blogs. How do they do it? Is there some sort of "Church Communicator Time Warp" that I am un-aware of that gives you an extra hour a day to blog?

I would love to post a blog now. But I have to go start preparing for Easter. And then Christmas Eve again.


I am going to try and post here more often, OR Perhaps I can just steal some of Jon Acuff, Tim Schraeder and Kem Meyer's old blog posts.