Friday, October 31, 2008


Today, I got up and ran with no bird attacks, although he was on the porch when I came back. We then went to my brother Shane's wedding rehearsal and lunch. We came back and dressed the kids up as a "Jedi," "StormTrooper" and a "Princess," to head out to a harvest festival in a nearby neighborhood. We had a good time. Then my mom played babysitter as Keri and I went out on a date with my brother Josh and Brittany. It was at a Starbucks at 11pm that we were kicked out. (kind off) This strange Starbucks employee comes over and says "we close at 11pm and we lock the doors." Then he walks over and holds the door open and stairs at us with "crazy eyes." It was a "leave now!," kind of tone/look. We got a good laugh out of that one....and headed home.
PS - Yesterday, we had a great time at Daytona Beach. It was a little chilly, but not for those with thick pale white skin from Ohio! Nothing more to report except that we flew a kite...really high in the heavy wind.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

vc #3 my wakeup call

This morning, as I opened the door for my morning run, and the sun was shining in my face on this beautiful day. When out of nowhere, a huge gray crane comes in for a landing, (not graceful creatures in the air) and literally almost lands on top of me. I jumped out of the way, (cat-like reflexes) just as the big bird lands on the front steps of our rental house. Then (standing 4ft tall) turns and stares at me. I'm never been used as a landing pad for a gray crane....or any other bird for that matter, but it does keep vacations interesting. Anyway, today we travel to Daytona Beach!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

vacation chronicles 2

Disney was great. Our kids loved it! The crowds were down, the weather was cool and the lines were short. My parents got free tickets, and the guy who gave them came with us to get us in to the park. We got a free parking pass, a free double stroller ($31 value) and a lady at the counter gave me a free Disney World! We got out of there spending only $22. I love a good deal, and getting one makes me enjoy whatever it was, that much more.
I will say, that "anticipation" is sometimes as much fun, or even better than the actual experience. To see my little girls eyes when she first saw the big castle was priceless. The other side of an experience is the memories. I played up the anticipation and now will be working the memories.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

vacation chronicles 1

My kids loved their first airplane ride. I love being there for my kids firsts in life. I do my best to build it up to make these kind of experiences even more special. Tomorrow is Disney World! My parents are taking our whole family as their Christmas gift to us. Right before they left, a friend of theirs came up and is giving them 7 free tickets. FAVOR! Anyways, our kids are so excited and I will make sure to get the most out of the memories we make tomorrow. You can bet for years from now, I will still bring up the memories we are about to make. Then when my kids are all grown up, they will think back to their childhood and have some great memories.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

good weekend

Fun O Ween went off without a hitch on Saturday. We had several hundred people from the community come out to enjoy our free community event. C3 has some amazing people that jump in and work hard to pull our big events off. We had several guests this morning, several through the connection of our event.
- Buckeyes lost a tough game.......well.....Jesus is still on the throne!
- Tomorrow afternoon, my family is flying to Florida for a week of vacation and my brother Shane's wedding. We're leaving Ohio just as the snow starts to fly...ha.

Friday, October 24, 2008


- Had a great board meeting last night, that confirmed what I was feeling as far as direction of C3. (Details to follow)
- Tomorrow, we are doing our "Fun O Ween" event here at C3. With inflatables, hayrides, games, cotton candy, popcorn, paint a pumpkin, chili cook-off, cornhole and other stuff, it should be good. C3 does about 4-5 free community events a year.
- I actually did qualify for the Boston Marathon in 2010, with my last race. A technicality that has to do each race time completed is good for 2 years. In that time, I turn 35 and the qualifying time has 5 minutes added. OK, I may have just confused you. Although I'm in for 2010, I couldn't live with myself for taking it.
- Got invited to do a buddy's wedding in Poland (not Poland Oh) and he would cover Keri and I's way...WOW!
- This Sunday, I will attempt to cover the whole book of Revelation in one message. It is probably the hardest message I've ever prepared for and of course it will be less detailed and more of a big picture.
- Monday, I'm boarding my family on a plane for our 2nd week of vacation to Orlando to stay with my whole family in a big rented house. My middle brother Shane is getting married and my dad and I will do the wedding. AND, my parents are giving us tickets to Disney World as our Christmas gifts! I'M GOING TO DISNEY WORLD! YEAH!
- Go BUCKEYES!.......beat Penn State.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

How God Speaks

Now I don't claim to be the foremost authority on the issue, but I will tell you what I have learned and seen. It is usually in 1 of 4 ways how God usually speaks; a thunderbolt, from birth, over time and an open door. If you are following Christ, you have most likely experienced one or more of these. Which one does God usually speak to you with the most? What could you do to listen better in that area? Have you found other ways that God speaks to you?

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

where do you live

I read a quote this morning that said;
- Young people live in the future.
- Old people live in the past.
- Wise people live in the present.
So where do you live? My thought is that we draw from knowledge and experience from the past, as we are planning and dreaming for the future. Then we have to create steps in order to move that direction while in the present.
Which of the 3, do you find yourself most living in?

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

hug a beggar

"People who don't hug beggars, have forgotten that they were one." This past Sunday, we touched on the seriousness of sin. Sin is so serious that Jesus had to pay for it with His life. My prayer, is that I never forget that from which I have been forgiven and set free. May I always show love to those still in bondage by not judging and always showing love. I never want to isolate myself from the pain of the world, where I lose touch and grow numb to hurt around me.

Monday, October 20, 2008

failure is not final

Saturday, I attempted my first marathon (outside of the Ironman triathlon). I felt great and was actually ahead of pace up to mile 24, which is where I fell apart. My legs started getting tight, my vision got a little blurry and I started feeling dizzy. I kept looking at my watch and could see that my hopes of hitting the qualifying time for the Boston Marathon was slipping away. I can honestly say, I tried to push as hard as I could. I needed a 3hr 10min 50sec, I finished in 3hr 13min 3sec, can you say bummer! When I crossed the line, I could barely stand, much less walk. I have always been one to set my goals high, and I guess trying to qualify for the Boston on 2 months of training was a little bit high. I will say, that now there is a fire in my gut to make this goal. I will put the training in, and I will give it another shot. Failure is like a wedge, it will either drive us "up" or "down."

I have learned that when you push yourself to the edge of physical failure, you get to know yourself in a way that few ever experience. I did placed 75th out of 1,163, but like I tell my boys, win or lose, you just have to give your very best. I can say, that I left it all on the course...........but I still want another shot...ha

Friday, October 17, 2008

constantly uncomfortable

Am I comfortable? Am I comfortable in my job, my life or maybe in my walk with Jesus? There are many times if I asked myself that question, I would have to say "yes." But that is not where I want to be. I want to be living life on the edge, especially in my walk with Jesus. I want to continually be hearing and responding to the Holy Spirit and biting off more than I can personally chew on my own strength. In other words, I want to live "constantly uncomfortable." Life is too short to take the easy way out and the one's who write HIS-Story are the one's who aren't afraid of failing and/or pain. Tomorrow morning for hopefully 3hrs and 10 minutes, I will be in constant pain, while trying to cross off yet another Life Goal of qualifying for the Boston Marathon at the Indy Marathon. I may fail, I may succeed, but like I tell my kids, "just give it your best." Anyways, tomorrow will be in the physical realm, how I want to live in the spiritual realm.....constantly uncomfortable.

Thursday, October 16, 2008


Today, I'm doing something incredibly significant, by doing nothing. My Keri is at a Ministers wives retreat, while I take the day off and stay home and play with my kids. We are staying in our pajamas all day and will wrestle and play doll house till Kaden comes home. I never want to forget, that being a dad is even more important than being a Pastor.
Tomorrow late afternoon, I head to Indianapolis with 2 buddies to get ready to run a marathon (26.2 miles) and hopefully qualify for the Boston Marathon. The qualifying time for my age group is 3hrs 10min. Which is the same pace as 8.5mph on the treadmill for 3hr and 10min. OUCH! I have not done all the training needed, but am always up for a challenge. Time will tell.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


I read a little today on spiritual inheritance that got me thinking. Why is it that no revival (move of God) has been effectively passed down to the next generation? A few years ago, I went to Azusa Street where the roots of the Pentecostal movement began in the US. It is a small tourist attraction now. It's like the baton fell somewhere, and is all we got were stories and a plaque telling us what happened here. When in all reality, their ceiling should have been our floor. My dad has done more in ministry than my grandfather, and I hope to do more than my dad, and I hope my kids do more than me for the name of Jesus. That is how "inheritance" is supposed to work. I think part of the baton being dropped, is that the following generation tries to defend what was given them, rather than taking it to the next level. If we only play defense, we can never win, and at best only tie. I believe God wants us to continue to build on the foundation that the Saints of the past have laid. My generation now, needs to work on the exchange to the we don't look like the U.S. sprint relay teams in the last Olympic Games.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008


This week's message is about "hell." As I am studying for this message, it has really challenged me on the way I live my life. I mean, we are talking about ETERNITY! Forever! Once we breathe our last breath, that is it, there are no more chances. Am I really doing all I can to see as many people come to Jesus as possible? I guess the real question is, "Do we really believe in hell?" If we truly did, we would all no doubt, live our lives different. For a rude awakening, check out "23 minutes in hell." It is one man's account of Jesus taking him there to experience it. It will wake you up. Here is the link:

Monday, October 13, 2008


Yesterday after church, our family went to Sonic to sit outside and eat. (I have to give props to my Keri, who with the help of coupons, can usually get our meals for 5 people under $10) Anyway, while eating his corn dog, my seven year old Kaden's tooth fell out on the ground. I was laughing as we were looking for it and finally found it. He knew that tooth represented a $1 bill and was determined to find it. Later that night, he asked his mom if she was the tooth fairy. He is at that age where he is starting to lose some of his innocence and see the world more in reality. It's kind of sad when this begins to take place, but in all reality, I guess it has to. (I don't want to be driving to his house when he's 37 and trying to slip a dollar under his pillow) As a dad, I want to protect my kids from the junk of the world, but yet let them experience enough to where they are not naive. I think my parents did a great job with me and my brothers. My dad was great at using circumstances and situations as teaching moments. That combined with them sheltering us and my mothers prayers, seemed to work pretty well. On the other hand, had they "over sheltered" us, we probably would have went out and made a lot of stupid decisions or been led astray. Now it is mine and Keri's chance to try to do the same with our kids.

Saturday, October 11, 2008


Friday night and Saturday was spent with my dad, my two sons and 2 other boys. We went on a campout and had a blast. We roasted apples from a nearby tree, went exploring, caught a frog, played army and had a 25 minute battle royal wrestling match in our huge tent. Around the campfire last night, we taught these boys how a man shakes hands. A firm grip and to look the other person in the eye. I tried to go a little deeper on what it means to be a man of God, but between the fire and ADHD with NO medication, we had to go a different direction. Ha. Anyways, made some great memories that we will have forever.

Friday, October 10, 2008


I continually try to forecast for my life and the future of C3 Church. Forecasting, is where you look ahead and try to make decisions now, that prepare you for the upcoming future. Realizing that our church is (God willing) going to continue to grow, have started looking into options to prepare for it. This week a builder came in (for free) and give us some prints of a 500 seat auditorium, that attaches to our current building. Other options would be, renting out the schools auditorium next door or going to 3 services. Then getting as many pro's and con's together for each, in order to make the best decision for the future. Our heart is to have already done all the behind the scenes work, so when we are ready to pull the trigger, we can do it quickly. What forecasting do you need to do personally or in your work or ministry.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

keep your guard up

I was thinking about a karate tournament I entered several of years ago. As the fights when on, I found myself slowly lowering my guard. There was a time or 2 that I paid for it. This week I was in a Presbyter meeting, and in that meeting there is a point where decisions about discipline are made for those ministers who have fallen morally. Those sessions break my heart. I can only imagine the pain, grief and guilt that they and their families are going through. I appreciate the grace with truth that is extended. For it is by the grace of God that any of us could fall as well. For those who have made unwise decisions, at some point, they let their guard down. The longer your guard is down, the more likely you are to be hit. Personally, I try to identify my entry level temptations. Those are the small issues, that lead big issues. I can many times choose where I fight my battles. I want to fight, where I am more in control and fighting against the issue while it is smaller, and not yet had the chance to get bigger. Is your guard up or down?

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Red Sonya

The name for my car just hit me.....RED SONYA! I even think in the comic books she teamed up with CONAN the barbarian! It's like peas and carrots. Red Sonya it is!

my new to me wheels

Check out my new ride......Can you say...Dodge Stratus! I've already committed the car to God and prayed that He helps this car run for many years. It's His and He's just lending it to me. I got this car with the money from my other accident, as it was an even exchange. The Lord is good! I'm now thinking about a good name for this car. Any ideas?


Last Sunday we talked about hypocrisy and how we as believers need to confess when we mess up. Confession saying, "I'm trying my best to be a follower of Jesus and what I did is not who I want to be. Will you forgive me....or help hold me accountable?" I believe that is what being "authentic" is all about. Yesterday, after our Community Group meeting, I was talking with a new friend of mine who just started attending C3 a couple months ago. He shared how he was under a lot of stress and how some of his reactions today were less than Christlike. Can I just say, "this is what it means to confess and be authentic." This is how a church is supposed to function. Not wearing masks or hiding our "real lives." As his friend and pastor, I am praying for him today and will ask him some accountability questions this week. I love the fact that some of our C3'ers are starting to build close enough relationships, where we don't have to pretend.

Monday, October 6, 2008


Today, I bought a 2001 Dodge Stratus! I'm excited to now have a car with A/C and without the horrible gas smell and smashed back end. I am though, struggling with letting my old car go. Her name is Bonnie the Bonneville, and we have traveled over 150,000 miles together. I've had some great times with Jesus in that car, and toured the state of Ohio through many small towns. It's almost like losing the family pet..ha. Why is change so hard? I think we are creatures of habit and routine. For the most part, we are drawn to security and comfort. If we are to live life to the fullest, we have to fight against this urge to remain in our comfort zone. Whether we like it or not, things change. This life of faith that Christ calls us to, is on the edge and far away from normal. To get the fruit, you have to go out on a limb.

more stuff

- Last night we took a few members on our C3 team to the district "Leadership Tour."
- Half of today and tomorrow I'm heading to a Presbyter meeting of which I have been newly elected over the Columbus area Assembly of God pastors.
- Today we are buying a (new-to-me) car. We are looking at a couple, but a red 2001 Dodge Stratus may take the cake....did I mention leather seats? ha
-Sunday we launched a new series called "The Elephant in the Church." Yesterday we dealt with hypocrisy.
- Go Buckeyes!
- A little nugget to think on: "Reactions reveal who we really are."

Saturday, October 4, 2008

healthy discussion

At our C3 staff retreat, we had some healthy discussion. We are in a very pivotal time in the life of our young church, as we are making decisions that will affect our future. I love the fact that we can disagree. We certainly don't have "yes" people on our team. They will speak their minds, but never cross the line. To have this kind of dialog, you have to a have a foundation of trust. Trust that we are all after what is best for the whole church, and trust that nothing that is said, is ever a personal attack on an individual or their idea. The real key though, is that when we walk out of the meeting, we are all on the same page, running in the same direction and you don't have to worry about someone saying, "I told you so."

Friday, October 3, 2008


Tonight we begin our staff retreat by going to Chipotle, then to Starbucks and finally out to Heartland Conf Retreat Center for the night. We are going to have some games and discussion and then tomorrow jump into business while the wives go shopping.....window shopping (ha). We have an amazing team and I'm excited about the future of C3.
Tonight is also Pickerington Central's homecoming game. Being the overflow parking lot for our HS football team, we should have no less than 200 cars on our lot. Tonight we are bringing back the $1 parking, where we pay them to park on our lot. Last year it created some incredible buzz at the game and within our community. We actually keep out 2% of our budget to give back to the community in various forms.

Thursday, October 2, 2008


I'm currently reading UnChristian by David Kinnaman. This book will truly get you thinking about how the church is perceived, and what can be done to change the negative stereotype. He had a line that said something like,"The goal of evangelism, is the wise and careful stewardship of the image of God." Think about that. Or how about how Jesus never offended the lost, only the religious. I truly believe that we as the "church," have to make some major changes in the way we represent Christ. Personally, God continually changes my heart and thoughts to become more like His, which is my goal. But at my best, I'm still a hypocrite in transition.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

planning ahead

Today, we mapped out our messages up until Christmas with message series, titles, scriptures and main point. At C3, the messages in the kids ministries mirrors what is done in the main service. This is tough work and requires some gifted staff to be able to create curriculum. I appreciate Gary and Becky for holding my feet to the fire.
Our heart is to structure our church like we are a much larger church, so that when we get there, we will already be structuring for the next stage of growth. In our staff meeting today we also discussed what are C3's biggest strengths and weaknesses. Then we looked at how we can utilize our strengths to help our weaknesses. Great discussion.
On a personal level, what do you need to structure in your life to help you grow to the next level? - Grow daily or die gradually.