Monday, December 31, 2007

best question ever

Yesterday, I spoke on the "best question ever". I got some great material from Andy Stanley's book of the same title. The question is, "What is the wise thing for me to do? Since we are all unique, the answer changes with each individual. We looked at 3 different angles to the question.
1. In light of my past experiences, what is the wise thing for me to do?
- Things you have struggled with in the past, may make something unwise for you....and not for someone else.
2. In light of my current circumstances, what is the wise thing for me to do?
- Don't make decisions or react when your emotions are running high.
3. In light of my future hopes and dreams, what is the wise thing for me to do?
- Be aware to make decisions on how they will affect you and your future dreams.

This question is gold. I know I use it on a regular basis. It even goes beyond right or wrong. Just because something is not wrong, doesn't make it wise for me to do. Ex. Eating a candy bar is not wrong, but eating 50 of them right before bedtime is not wise. This question is a great filter for life.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

wedding day

In a few minutes I am doing a wedding for a young couple that attend C3. They have no clue of what lies ahead, but only have their promise and commitment to each. This commitment will be tested their entire lives and must be decided on a daily basis. When people get married they each bring their own baggage and their families baggage into the relationship. This is what makes it interesting. My marraige has and always will be my biggest adventure. I love it!

Friday, December 28, 2007

pick something up

Yesterday, my son Kaden (6yrs) tripped and hurt himself. When I asked if he was alright, he said "I meant to do that." I had a good laugh and began to think about how we are the same way. As soon as we fall down, we try to get back up as fast as we can before anyone sees us. Maxwell says "when you're down there, you might as well pick something up." I try my best now, when I make a mistake, to learn something from the mistake so as not to repeat it. If I try and fail, I don't look at it as failure as much as, I learned something that didn't least at that time and in that way. Also, when you are laying on your face flat on the ground, you tend to see details and angles you don't get to see all the time. So when you fall, (key word WHEN), pick something up.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

leaders are readers

I had a mentor say to me once,"If you don't read, I'm not sure that you have anything to tell me from the pulpit." That has stuck with me over the years. Currently, I read 2 books a month and several podcasts as well. This helps me to continually have a constant stream of ideas and new thoughts. This helps keeps me fresh. Another quote, I heard from a guy named Tim Sanders rocked me when he said, "I read because I love." The point being that the more I read, the more valuable I make myself to invest in others. You may not be able to be "well traveled," but you have no excuse not to be "well read." ---Just that fact that you are reading this, means you're on the right track.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007


There is nothing like family! It is funny how we have such a great time around each other, telling stories, jokes or reliving the past. I may be alone here, but have you ever felt that your family is like the family on "Everybody loves Raymond?" Maybe I'm alone here, but I've even actually brought it up at a family gathering and pointed out who was acting like who. I'm just glad that we could laugh about it. But really, that is what makes a family, a family. We won't always see eye to eye or agree on everything, but there is a common thread of love and acceptance that runs through us all. I love my family!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007


Funny, how C3 is moving forward, but for the 2nd Christmas in a row, we have had our least attended Sunday service. I guess the majority of our people are younger and seeing that Picktown was a cornfield 10 years ago, no one is from here. So, they all head back to their parents houses and places that they grew up. But, we decided to do a Christmas eve service as an experiment. It was crazy! We had so many people show up, it was standing room only, and over half of them were first time guests. We were operating on a skeleton crew of leaders, but we pulled it off. I'm anxious to see what kind of momentum this brings to C3. To God be the Glory......yo!

Friday, December 21, 2007

tyranny of the urgent

Gary Fowler (C3's Exec Dir.) and I were talking yesterday about where we are as a church. We are currently a church of 220 -250 and from the small fires of staffing kids rooms to all the petty time stealers, we have found ourselves spinning our wheels a bit. We have a big front door and big back door. So we are taking this next season to focus on process and strategy to move to the next level of growth. Mine and Gary's conversation was about how easy it is for a church to stay at this level and "feel busy." Then before you know it, 5 years have gone by. So, we are making adjustments to delegate, staff and train leaders to move to the next level. Our discipleship process of Connect - Grow - Serve, is one of the main processes to take us to the next level. Also, I think the key is freeing up our top leaders to do what only they can do, while training and releasing other leaders at C3 to fulfill their purpose in serving God. We are loving the challenge!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

The odds

Reading the Case for Christ for some sermon helps this week and came across a staggering statistic on the odds of Christ fulfilling just 8 of the several dozen prophesies in the Old Testament. These prophesies were written hundreds of years before Christ was born about the coming Messiah. The odds of It would be 1 in a hundred million billion. It would be like covering every piece of dry land on the planet with little white tiles that are 1 and a half inch squares, one of which has a gold star on the back. You get to walk the planet as long as you like and then get one chance of turning over the right one. It would be the same odds with Christ only fulfilling 8 of them. Food for thought during the Christmas season.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

preschool Christmas play

Last night, we went to see our 3 1/2 year old Kross, sing in his preschool Christmas play. There were at least a 100 kids on stage singing, wiggling, starring into space and yes.....even picking their noses. My Kross didn't sing a word, but rather kept looking at something on the bottom of his shoe. It was if he was temporarily paralyzed and was trying to get away from the hundreds of eyes that were on him.
Have you ever been there, where you are paralyzed from acting? Maybe it's fear or just not knowing what to do next. I know I have been there. When I have been there, my reply is "just do something". Sometimes we look at the "elephant" we have to eat and are overwhelmed by the sheer size of the problem. But we must realize that we eat an elephant, one bite at a time. Currently at C3, we are pounding out this "Simple Church" discipleship process. Which is very difficult and complex to get it to simple. But we are making progress and slowly it is becoming more clear and focused. We have chosen a direction and are chipping away at the mountain in front of us in order to get there.
Wow...I wonder if any of this even makes sense to anyone else...if not, please forgive the rambling.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007


I try to make a big deal out of the little things in life with my kids. But really, I am just adding to the great imagination and awe, that is already there. We took our kids to a neighborhood right next to ours where the whole street has lights hooked up to each other and to the music on their own radio station. Griswald on doubt. I loved hearing the oooh's, aaaahhh's and the "look daddy". It's amazing how the little things can bring wonder to the heart of a child. Why do we have to lose that? It's amazing how much joy we rob ourselves from because we fail to appreciate the little things. I'm trying to hit the brakes this Christmas season and join my kids in the "wonder".

Monday, December 17, 2007

pirates 3

Wow! I just learned of Krogers $1 DVD rentals on new releases. It came just in time, seeing Keri and I have watched all the good ones there on our "in house" date nights. It is amazing how God speaks to me through movies. When I walk away, I want to go and get on my face to pray. Keri and I watched Pirates of the Caribbean 3, and there was a great line in there. "When you lose your purpose, you lose your life." That is sooo true. I'm truly enjoying living out my God given purpose on this earth. There is some amazing drive and satisfaction that comes along with living your purpose. I have met a lot of people who are just taking up space on this planet by living aimlessly, and they are miserable. There is so much more. God has so much more. Are you living your purpose?

Friday, December 14, 2007


Home....where's yours? I used to say, "home is where your mom is." Or when I go back to southeast Ohio where Keri and I were Youth Pastor for a few years, kind of feels like home. Perhaps Canton Ohio, where I spent most of my High School and some college years could be my home. Having lived in 20 something homes, it makes it kind of rough to claim one of them as "my home." But really I think home is the place where you feel you are truly alive. The place where you feel that safety and "where everybody knows your name" kind of feeling. Home is where you are excepted for who you are, and can just be yourself. I'm really starting to feel at home at C3 and in Pickerington Ohio. No doubt God has here, now, for this cause. I feel like my family and I are "home."

Thursday, December 13, 2007

frosty the snowman

Last week, we had some snow that was soon going to be melting. So I took my kids outside after dark in our front yard to make a "Frosty" the snowman. The snow was perfect packing, and our Frosty was almost 6ft tall. Then we had a snowball fight to top off the evening. (I can still dominate the 1st grade and under level...ha) Soon though, came warmer temps and even some rain, and Frosty began to shrink. He began to lean forward and we even moved his head back on his body to prolong his life, but it was inevitable. Kind of like our lives. The Bible says we are "but a vapor." It's sad that we many times spend so much of our lives on things that are temporary (myself included), while passing daily the only things that are eternal.......and that is SOULS. If people are the only thing we can bring with us from this life to the next, why do we invest so much of ourselves in stuff that will soon be gone?

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

remove hurry

Talking this morning with the wise Gary Fowler and he said something that stuck. If we truly want change in our lives, we must "ruthlessly remove hurry from our lives." WOW! Even when I was a kid, my mom said when they would say it's time for me to go to bed, I would respond "I can't, me busy." To this day, I still find myself always doing something and many times, I'm in a hurry. But when I live life totally wide open all the time, it's easy to miss the beauty of life that can only be seen when we stop and take in the details. I have to constantly remember to slow down and smell the roses and to REMOVE HURRY.

Ok, that's all the time I've got, because I have to run.....oh wait...uhhhh....yeah...bye

Tuesday, December 11, 2007


Love. We all want it, need it and many times will do crazy things in order to get someone to love us. I think it's crazy that the more you love someone, the greater capacity you have to hate them. The more you love someone, the greater their ability to hurt you. Have you ever noticed that the one who cares the least about the relationship, is the one who controls it. Some, even withhold their love to manipulate others to get what they want. It's a crazy thing this love. I'm so glad that Christ modeled perfectly what love is and should be. From the crib to the cross and everything in between.

Monday, December 10, 2007

life is messy

Today, I spent the day at home for my day off. Interacting with my kids really got me thinking how life is not "nice and neat." In other words, we can't control others emotions, problems and some of the crazy situations we find ourselves in. This afternoon, while in this process of raising my kids, I had to deal with a "fit throwing" issue. I can remember as a teenager saying "my kid will never act like that." Keri and I have blessed with great kids ....hyper yes, but rebellious, usually no. We do on other hand find ourselves on a daily basis disciplining our kids, and still we have had a few occasions where our kid, was "that kid." In the moment it didn't matter how many spankings, threats, bribes with that time, it just wasn't going to happen. Life can just plain be messy. But really, that's what makes life....LIFE! As I talked about this week at C3, this journey of life is all about the process. I have begun to look at all the crazy, messy situations I find my self in, as challenges.

Friday, December 7, 2007

outside eyes

Yesterday, Gary and I had lunch with the Boss man, Doug Clay. He is an incredible leader and idea man. We were asking him a ton of questions and he gave us some great solutions, many of which were right under our noses. I think it's funny how when you are in the middle of something, it's very hard to see some things that may be obvious to an outside pair of eyes. One of the questions we try to ask ourselves is, "What advice would we give ourselves in this situation?" Personally, I feel I need to take some outside speaking engagements where I travel out of Pickerington. It helps me step back from our situation and see it with a different set of eyes, as well as get to rub shoulders with some sharp people outside my normal circles. It also gives me a chance to dream and pray for clear vision and direction and I always come back recharged. Do you need a fresh set of eyes to look at your current situation, or perhaps you need to step away for a few days to recharge and think about direction?

Thursday, December 6, 2007

mercy not sacrifice

I was listening to "the Bible Experience" this morning while working out and Jesus (once again) said something in Mt 12:7 that really got my wheels turning. (I was on the stationary bike..ha) He said, "I desire mercy, not sacrifice."
Wow, do I show enough mercy? Have I, while in the mindset of sacrificing, perhaps with salary, fasting, ministerial duties, etc, missed opportunities to show mercy? I can see how sometimes sacrifice could turn selfish. We can tend to then get judgemental of others who are not doing as much as we are. Or we say, "if they only knew how much I have sacrificed." This is a wrong paradigm and an abuse of true sacrifice. It turns the focus from God to ME.
I received a phone call from someone asking if C3 confronts sin in our church. (I knew he had a story to tell and I let him tell it after I answered his question) I told him that it depends. (dramatic pause for effect) If someone new comes into our's the Holy Spirit's job is to convict them. In other words, mercy and love are shown to them as they begin seeking God. How can we expect to hold them to a standard that they don't even know exists? On the other hand, if someone claims to be a believer and are a part of this body (church), then yes, absolutely. It will be done with love and mercy, but it is the responsibility of the leadership to do so, for their sake and the sake of the church. I want to have both mercy and sacrifice.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

I still date my wife

Last night Keri and I went on a date. I wish I could say this was a weekly occurrence that we get to go out for a night alone, but that is not quite the case. With the price of baby sitting and just finding a free night being somewhat difficult, we have to get creative. So weekly, we put the 3 kids to bed and watch a movie (free from library) and have "popcorn and Pepsi night". It is our in-house date night. I realize that having a young family can take it's toll on a marriage relationship, so we are doing our best to not only guard ours, but grow it. We must be intentional to do what is important, but sometimes overlooked.

Last nights date of PF Changs, $30 game card for GameWorks and 2 coffees, cost us $3.80. Thanks to gift cards, and a buy one/get one free coupon. THE LORD IS GOOD!
(I'm doing my "the Lord is Good" dance right now)

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

pet peaves

We all have them! I think it is kind of funny some of the things that bother us. For me, I can't stand to see a door open when it is cold outside. I guess in my head I'm asking the guilty party if they are "trying to heat the neighborhood?" Another one I just found out I had, is when someone refers me to a book that they read that is no good, but they claim that it is. Here is where my issue comes in. If they read quite a bit and it really spoke to them, then great, no problem. The problem is, when they are not well read and try to jump in a conversation with the only book they have read in the last 3 years, and then I go buy it and waste some time reading it. Wow, I think that was the most negative blog I have ever written (as I move my bracelet). Ok, I'm back to being my old positive self. Make it a great day!