Wednesday, April 30, 2008


I was reading in Psalms this morning where it that said "They have become like the idols they worship." This is still true today. Whether we worship the God of money, fashion, image, self or something else, we truly do begin to take the shape of our idol, both internally and externally. Why? Worship is something that consumes us. Our thoughts, time, energy, money and life are all then geared toward our new god. What do you worship? What has control of your thoughts, your money and your time? Is that what you want to become?

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

currently reading

I have been asked on occasion to blog about some books I am reading. Disclaimer: Please know that I may or may not agree with every author on every issue. With that said:

- Pop goes the Church by Tim Stevens - Good book filled with some great ideas on how the church can use pop culture to reveal the message of Jesus Christ. Decent read and I love his last name!

- Ladder Focus by Sam Chand and Gerald Brooks - I'm only halfway right now, but am getting some great brain food for how to cast and maintain vision. Dr. Chand is a personal friend of the family and is an amazing thinker and leader.

- Organic Church by Neil Cole - He has some great thoughts and a different way to view church.

- Also, I have been loving listening to the "Bible Experience" on my ipod. It's the Bible with all the sound effects in the background that is read by some Hollywood stars with great voices. At least that is what I was told.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Man Soap

Last night, during shower time for my boys, as usual they were using the "boys" soap. You know, the "tear free" stuff. Anyway, my 4 year old said, "Daddy, I want to use your MAN SOAP!" I told him he had to be careful not to get it in his eyes. He had a good lather going on his hands and said, "Look Daddy, I have Man Hands!" I got a good laugh at his comments.
It really makes me think of how my little boys will learn the majority of what it means to be a man, from me. They will see modeled how to treat their spouse, their children, see how I talk to and about others and how to follow Jesus. What a huge responsibility! I don't have this dad thing all figured out, but I'm determined to give it my best shot.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Pick-up Pickerington

Today, I took my 2 boys and joined several others from our community to beautify our Community. We had several C3'ers who were there to serve as well. It was the perfect weather for it! The day was run by the city and was considered a success. One cool thing about this was, that while in the process to pick a date, they called me and asked what would fit our church calendar. I am totally stoked about the idea of the city calling us to help them. We are a great volunteer base for our community as we SERVE like Jesus. I think some of our C3 crew even made the paper! (I hate it when they only photograph the beautiful people...ha)

Friday, April 25, 2008

farming life

Yesterday, touring an historical living farm, complete with people working the farm, dressed like and using tools that were straight out of the 1800's. The big thing was SIMPLICITY. Everything they did and the tools they used were basic. Also, I was amazed at how they weren't in a big hurry and stressing about deadlines and appointments. It was an era of hard physical work and closeness of family. When there is no place to go and you are working with your family everyday, I would think you would be pretty close. Also, with no electricity, when the sun goes down, they would go to sleep pretty early. It just got me thinking how complex we have made life. It's also crazy how with all our gadgets of cell phones, wireless internet and text messaging, our lives haven't slowed down any, but rather have only speeded up. I just want to do my best to keep perspective as I journey through this life.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

family field trip

Today, I and my family are taking the day off and heading to Slate Run park for a picnic at a park. We will then join Kross's preschool class for a field trip there. My older son Kaden also has the day off as well. Combine that with some sunshine and we are in for a great day. I have learned that one of the keys to enjoying life is balance. Not only balance between work and family, but also being able to sustain the pace of life's workload. The question I occasionally ask myself is, can I sustain this pace for the long haul? Not only me, but my family as well. Right now, I can answer yes. Although there are occasions where I have to rearrange my priorities.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

pulling the trigger

It's one thing to dream and talk about what could and should be, but it is another to "pull the trigger" and take the risk. Tonight at our Advisory Board meeting, we are almost certainly going to "pull the trigger." We have been researching getting a modular classroom unit, which is being donated from Evangel Temple in Gahanna (big thanks to them). It may be free, but it costs mucho thousands to get it here and set up properly. As a church, we are in need of more "kids" space until we again "pull the trigger" to build a new building which will probably be sooner than later. Comfort flies out the window when you constantly live on the edge of faith and risk. But I have found, that the fruit is on the END of the branch where it is wobbly and less secure.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

leaders leading leaders

I had a very quick conversation with a guy who has helped us tremendously as a church growth consultant. We were talking about phases of growth in churches and the obstacles of breaking through growth plateaus. He shared that the next big litmus test for us, will be if our key leaders (staff) can lead other leaders. It is one thing for a leader to lead followers. It is another thing completely, for a leader to lead other leaders, who leads followers. WOW, was that confusing or what? But do you see the point? That is when you move from addition to multiplication. Time will tell. I believe our C3 team is ready to GROW through this next challenge.

Monday, April 21, 2008

pushing through another growth barrier

For all those interested in the church planting side of this blog, I have to give God "mad props" (or Praise) for what HE has done. As a church we just crested the 300 barrier on a non-holiday Sunday. In my head, here are some of the reasons of the "why" and the "how."
- DISCLAIMER - I only on rare occasion ever talk numbers. I believe we as the church focus too much on BIG and not HEALTH. HEALTH is our focus and goal. Numbers are only 1 gauge out of many.

1. God's favor - Nothing, and I mean nothing compares to this.
2. Gary Fowler - An incredible leader that knows his role in the body of Christ. Gary is my right hand (more like both hands) as C3's #2 guy. We will both do so much more by working together, then either of us would a part. He is truly defying the myth that success in the ministry is being the "Senior" pastor.
3. Outwardly focused - God is giving us an incredible reputation as the "church always doing something free for the community." I'll take it.
4. Our Team - Both paid staff and unpaid volunteers, we have some amazing people who strive for excellence in their serving God. There are also opportunities to serve that are freely available for new people to be trained and jump on the team.
5. A plan - We have a clear plan (putting the finishing touches on it now) to move people in their spiritual discipleship. Also, we know why we are here and what we are to be doing.
6. Working in our strengths - Our key leaders are very intentional about doing what ONLY THEY CAN DO. This is a continual process that requires giving away power and always recruiting and training others.
7. Proactive rather than reactive - We have done our best Not to waste all of our time on petty small fires, but rather look ahead and deal with the root issues rather than the symptoms. Realizing that any conflict or issues can be used by our enemy to hinder C3, we have chosen to RUN at issues and deal with them quickly.
8. Hunger to grow - As myself and our leaders grow, so grows the church. Read, Listen, Pray, Pray, Pray and one more, Pray.
9. Playing to our strengths - We have several of our staff and leaders who know how to organize big events with excellence. (The State Youth Dir. position helped out a lot...ha) So we have done big events aimed at culture of our community. At our events, Jesus is not preached, but lived seems to be working.
10. Did I mention prayer? - One word about prayer.......FOUNDATIONAL!

I hope you glean something from this.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Today I raced

This morning my dad and my boys accompanied me to the Columbus Dietetic Association 5k running race, through a local park. I managed to out kick a pregnant lady pushing a stroller to win the whole thing! Well, not exactly. It was a smaller race that I did manage to win. I ran the 3.1 miles in 18min:14sec. Not too bad. I just love to anything. It's like I have this desire as a man to battle something. I get to do some of this through my prayer life, and some more of it every time I step to a starting line. One battle is fought in the spiritual realms and the other is in my own head and heart......................and did I mention I got a trophy!

Friday, April 18, 2008

quote on a picture in Starbucks

This morning, I was in a meeting with an incredible couple at Starbucks. On the wall was a great quote. It said, "the deeper the roots, the farther the reach." Wow, what a truth! The cool thing in life, is that truth is from God. So although it may be hanging in Starbucks, it really belongs to God. Jesus said, "I am the way, the TRUTH and the life." It's amazing how God can speak to us from just about anything. I mean we expect to hear Him speaking or find truth when we pray or read the Bible.....but what about a Starbucks picture hanging on the wall? My prayer is to be open and teachable 24/7 in all areas of my life. When I feel I found some truth, then I "test it" to make sure it lines up with God's Word and the person of Jesus Christ. If it does, then I have just grown a little more in my journey with Christ.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

drawing people

I read a great quote last night in the the book "Organic Church." It talked about getting new people to come to your church. It read, "What you draw them WITH, is what you draw them TO." It really got me thinking. My hearts desire is that everything about C3 Church points to Jesus Christ. That everything we do, be FOR Him, TO Him and THROUGH Him.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008


Tonight, I begin my coaching career as a dad. Kind of exciting and scary all at the same time. I mean, how do you teach kids how to play an in depth game like baseball, when they have no concept of it? Hopefully, most of my team will have had a year of t-ball under their belt. This year they are playing "machine pitch." My dad growing up was usually coaching either my team or one of my brothers teams. One thing that I learned from him and will try to apply is to teach the "fundamentals" of the game. If I can get these kids throwing, fielding, running and hitting, I will have done my job. This is no small task with all 7 year olds, because there are so many distractions. (grasshoppers, dirt, their gloves, grass, etc)
Isn't that true for us? If we can just continue to do some "fundamental" spiritual disciplines, we can usually stay on the right track. For a believer, it may be things like Bible reading, prayer, fasting, plugging into a church and serving. These basic fundamentals are the foundation for which we can build our lives on and around, but many times they get lost amongst all our distractions. How are you doing with your fundamentals?

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

my first's in life

On this last missions trip to Nicaragua, I had some firsts:
- Got to dress in a clown suit. (I'm a natural!) I think it's my first
- Got to hike around the top of a volcano.
- Did a zip line canopy tour
- Got to preach in Nicaragua
- Got to ride with 19 other people in a mini-vanh
- Got my sunglasses broken and ripped of my face by a monkey (still angry about that one)
- First missions trip from C3 Church
- Heard and saw some Howler Monkeys in the wild

Nothing compares with seeing God touch someones life. I love being a part of what God is doing. When you jump in to a cause that is on God's heart, He always shows up.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Back from Nicaragua

Wow! What a trip! We took 10 people from C3 Church to Nicaragua for 7 days to work with Kings Castle. We painted, did street ministry, spoke at a church, walked around a volcano, did a huge zip line and flew home. Today's C3 service was all about "Change Your World," and it tied in great with just coming back. We gave our people 4 opportunities to respond today with prayer, giving (a specific missions need), Clean up Community day and Soup Kitchen sign ups. We had a great response.

It is good to be back in the US, but I come back changed. Every missions trip I go on, God always changes me. I again told our people, EVERY person needs to go on at least 1 missions trip. Personally, I felt like God renewed some passion for the lost and for the things that matter eternally. These trips can at times serve as a "reality check." We saw extreme poverty, and deep spiritual hunger and passion. I have come back ready, to make a DENT for the Kingdom of God!

Friday, April 4, 2008

Nicaragua here we come

Tomorrow, we meet at the airport at 4am to fly out to Nicaragua. (I think I'll be nixing my usual morning workout..ha) Please pray for the 10 of us as we go, for God's favor and protection. It's crazy how on missions trips, I always go to give, but it seems God always does something big in me. Serving others, is not only for them, but it's for us. We look the most like Jesus when we serve. The problem is, we usually don't spend much time looking like Jesus. My challenge to our people going is that "LIFE IS A MISSIONS TRIP." If serving others in Jesus name ends when we come home, then it was just something that we did, and not who we are. So, who will you serve today?
I have no clue if I will have internet access while there, so this could be goodbye till next Saturday. Adios! (Sad, but the majority of my limited Spanish, has been taught to me by a little cartoon girl with a big head, a backpack, map and a pet monkey).......Swiper no Swiping!.......My little Kali would be so proud!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

a true test

This Saturday, myself, Gary Fowler (exec. dir.), Becky Medina (Childrens Dir), along with 7 others are going on C3's first overseas missions trip to Nicaragua. This means Sunday, will be a true test to see how well we have delegated, trained and empowered our leaders. On top of us not being there, Doug Clay (the big A/G cheese for Ohio) is coming in to speak both the morning services. I'm excited to see how well our leaders respond. I'm believing and hoping the rest of the church, may not even recognize we are gone. Time will tell.
Question for you: If you didn't show up to your job or church position, what would happen? Remember, there is no success, without a successor. Who are you raising up right now, to do what you do?

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

I'm speechless

Yesterday, I got a call from a respected minister in our Assembly of God circle, asking me if I was going to the Central Sectional Pastors meeting. I wasn't planning on it, until he said I should really think about it because he wanted to cast his vote for me for Presbyter (sectional overseer). I was speechless! Totally honored at his confidence in me, I talked to the wife, laughed and showed up to the meeting. To my surprise, as the voting went on, I was still in the running until they said my name as the new Presbyter. I almost laughed and got up and was again just about speechless. It's funny, but this is how God has always worked in my life. He puts me in positions I never asked for, nor really saw myself doing.
I will do my best to make this section of Ohio the healthiest it can be. It should be an adventure......and I'm always up for those!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

faster than the pastor 5k

Today, I have a meeting to see about C3 putting on a 5k road race where all the proceeds will be given back to our community. Every year we would take on a different cause, whether the police station, local school, community pool etc. We would have all the normal awards with overall winners and age groups awards, but some extra awards for all those who can beat THE PASTOR. (There I go again talking in the 3rd person) They would get a shirt that says "I was faster than the pastor." Although that would be more great advertisement for our church, I will make sure they earn it....ha. Anyway, we are looking to find our niche of 4 major community events that we can make an area staple. Our "Eggstravaganza" is there, now we have to put a couple more events on the radar of our community.