Thursday, August 30, 2007
Hi! My husband has really taken over our blog lately, so I thought I would share a little bit about what I'm doing right now. : ) I love you Micah.
I am not teaching...almost everyone I run into lately assumes I am teaching and asks what school I'm at. It's kind of funny. I guess that when you get your teaching credential people expect you to be a teacher. Who would have thought? haha. During my time at Pepperdine, I became an intern in Children's Ministry. Through this experience I discovered that I really loved it, and wanted to work somewhere in children's ministry after college. The advice I got at a Zoe conference from a children's minister from Texas was to get my teaching credential, and major in elementary education rather than religion because it would be more applicable. So, thus...I entered the elementary education program at Pepperdine. Once Micah and I got married, he was hired as a youth minister in Whittier, a church which I knew I couldn't be hired as a children's minister. So, I decided that teaching may be what I would have to fall back on because it obviously wouldn't be wise to work at a different church than my husband, and I knew that youth ministry was where God wanted Micah. There was no question about that. Then, we moved back to Fresno and Micah was hired at this amazing church, New Harvest. Through several discussions with some of the leaders at that church they discovered my passion for children's ministry, and now I am doing what I've wanted to do, and didn't think was possible. I love my job, and really feel like I am a part of something important..something BIG. It's amazing how God works, and I feel blessed to be a part of this movement at New Harvest. I'm also doing some private tutoring on the side, and am enjoying working one on one with kids. So, not to worry, I am using my credential...I'm not a teacher, but I am doing what God has called me to right now, and I'm LOVING it! : )
Hillsong United is one of my favorite worship bands right now. You may listen and think, "uh, that's a rock band, not a worship band"...but do you see these people. Young people worship best when they can rock out. When someone rocks, it shows passion, and genuine belief!
Check 'em out here or watch below.
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Check out what a local newspaper had to say about this Northpoint Community Church campus. It's pretty amazing.
And when you are done with that...check out this blog.
These are the kinds of ideas that capture my heart and make me want to scream! Seriously, if you want to know more about us, read these things and you'll understand a little bit about what we do and why we do it.
Tuesday, August 28, 2007
Recently I've had the pleasure of seeing some of Joshua Dildine's new developing style. It's pretty cool. He incorporates the framing into the art, it's one cohesive unit, instead of a painting or drawing within a frame...the frame becomes part of the art.
You can check his stuff out here.
Monday, August 27, 2007
I like to think that I think big. But even big for my little mind is way too small for God's will. Before Erica and I moved back to Fresno, I thought the largest youth/student ministry I'd ever be leading would be 50 students or so. I mean I would dream sometimes of having hundreds of students show up for an event or service, but then I'd walk into work and face the reality of a handful of students.
But then we moved.
Since then, my thoughts have been much larger and REALITY has supported the dream. Yesterday in our student service (Turnpike) we had a total of 109 people, 93 of them were students. This is a record for this ministry. I know, I know...it's not all about quantity. But it sure does build momentum and create a wider sphere of influence.
I'm pumped. Because here's the deal. We've been projecting that when we moved into the new building (The Plant) we'd grow to about 120 students by sheer interest. So we've been planning for that and part of the plan was recruiting more volunteers to that we could actually retain that amount of students in our small group environment. But the Sunday that we moved a bunch of our new volunteers into their capacity...God did something unexpected, he brought a bunch of students early (about 20 more than our previous record).
So here's the deal. I think God's communicating something with us. And I think he's communicated it with thousands of people before through the movie Field of Dreams.
"If you build it, they will come." God has built it and He is bringing the people!
Friday, August 24, 2007
Last night Erica's parents brought up the subject of Sermon Spice. It was locally launched, from Fresno, CA and they know one of the owners of the company. They sell videos for churches that help to enhance worship services or sermons. It adds some spice to it!
I found it on YouTube for your viewing pleasure...check it out and leave your reactions in a comment.
Thursday, August 23, 2007
I Dream Of
God I dream of a place of never ending love, and joy.
A place where I can always have a child like heart; girl or boy.
I dream of a place were I can be with my loved ones and never say goodbye.
A place where nobody tells any hurtful evil lies.
I dream of a place were I can play forever and never need to go home.
A place where I never get sick, scared or left alone.
I dream of a place it’s not hot or real real cold.
A place where the streets are made of precious shimmering gold.
I dream of a place where there is no war or harmful fights.
A place where God, Creator and savior is in my glorious site.
I know this is the way it really should be.
One day we will unite God, Jesus and believer; that’s me!
Wednesday, August 22, 2007
Around Januaray I started a practice of "walking with God" on my day off. Sometimes I would go for a few miles, just walking and talking with God. It was a great time of enrichment for my relationship with Christ.
Then Cooper (our dog) came. And it's been difficult to maintain that "walking and talking" time because it's been flipped backwards. Now it's just "dog walking".
I think I'm starting to understand how to balance. How to walk the dog, while talking with God. It's crazy how a small schedule change or change of pace can upset your universe, but then you learn to adapt to it and function well with it.
Tuesday, August 21, 2007
This Sunday, our church, New Harvest Church is starting our new ministry year. We've officially been at this assignment for 1 year! It's been amazing. When I first arrived here, I took a few months, tried a few things, but mostly watched for how things had been run. The ministry had been through some tough times, students were a little disillusioned because of their attachment to the previous two people in my post within a matter of months. I appreciate everything those men did for the ministry and I pray many blessings over what they are doing now.
We reached a point where it was clear that we needed to change things up, because the old ways weren't working well without the visionary of that model running things. Therefore we've been adopting and morphing a model of ministry which is completely compelling to me. In fact the entire church has been going through this change and process. Some of our staff attended a conference at North Point Community Church in Georgia last November. The conference is called DRIVE. It was amazing, life altering and completely freeing. The points shared and insights given at DRIVE gave us a new perspective. That perspective simply put is, "We are more committed to reaching people than keeping people."
This statement has raised questions and confusion. It has caused all of us to rethink and question our alignment with the church's mission. But I'm happy to say...the outcome is going to be amazing. God is truly working and he's molding us for a specific purpose in our community. Keep coming back for updates on what kinds of things come out of this.
Monday, August 20, 2007
Friday, August 17, 2007
I'm reading a book called Commnunicating For A Change (By Andy Stanley of North Point Community Church and Lane Jones) and it's pretty awesome. I just finished the first section, which is a story. A story about a Pastor/Preacher who is very unsatisfied with how his audience reactes to his messages. Simply put, they don't. They pat him on the back every week and say, "Great Job" or "One of your best!" And it eats him up.
Long story short, he makes his way to a man who has wisdom in the arena of communicating. He boils it down to ONE POINT. That's right. It's not a classic "3 Point Sermon," it's simply ONE point.
If you want to full scoop, you'll have to read it for yourself. There are 7 principles in the book and they're great. Check it out.
(Here's what another blogger had to say about the book.)
Thursday, August 16, 2007
Wednesday, August 15, 2007
Now that I've filled you all in on our last week and a half of craziness. It's time to take a time out and reflect.
Erica and I celebrated our 2nd anniversary on Monday (August 13th). It's crazy! I remember taking a class for "serious and engaged couples" on Sunday mornings at the University Church of Christ, which sits on Pepperdine University's Malibu campus. Susan Giboney, a woman of God, offers this class every semester to students. It's a type of pre-marital counseling, not a substitute for, but helpful.
From week to week she would invite different couples in to share their experiences on various topics, money, romance, chores, etc. Without fail, almost all of them would share that their first two years of marriage were the hardest and most difficult.
Sitting on this side of two years I'm asking myself, "WHAT?!" If that's the toughest part...we are in for a lifetime of awesomeness.
These past two years have been great!
On Monday night we went to PF Chang's for dinner and started a new tradition. We sat down and started reviewing where we had been and what we had done since we'd been married. We included such things as living in Thousand Oaks, Whittier, I (Micah) got shingles, we had season passes to Disneyland, Erica graduated with her credential, we moved back to Fresno so that Micah could work at New Harvest Church, we got a dog (Cooper), moved to a rental house in Clovis and more.
It's a great exercise and I recommend it to everyone. Sit down with your spouse (if you have one) and talk it through. Look how far you've come and praise God for his blessings and grace.
Tuesday, August 14, 2007
Erica and I visited my family up in the Northwest (Oregon/Washington) region. While there we went on the Columbia River with my dad's new toy (boat), thought I broke my foot, met our newest nephew (Will) face-to-face, spent two days on the Oregon Coast (Rockaway Beach), saw The Bourne Ultimatum with my brother, went to the Tillamook Cheese Factory, and I practiced playing guitar on my sister, Cheronn's guitar.
Here are a few pictures from our trip:
John, Tracy, Erica and Micah.
John and Micah. - I had no idea that I'd be second in the groomsmen line!
Micah, Erica, Hilary, and Josh.
Friday, August 10, 2007
We had a great visit with our family up in the NW and we're looking forward to seeing some our friends at the wedding in Kansas City.
Oh, the sun is coming up! I'm going to watch.
Thursday, August 09, 2007
Thursday, August 02, 2007
Now's the time, we're headed out of town...it's been a year since we've had vacation and we're excited to have one!
First we are going to Lindsey & Pete's wedding in Santa Rosa, Ca.
Then we fly out of Sacramento to Portland and we'll hang out with my family (and meet the newest nephew) for a few days.
Then, on Sunday morning, we fly from Kansas City to Salt Lake City to Sacramento.
Not much of a "vacation" but it will be a great trip. It's a good thing that I like to travel!
So, hopefully we'll see some of our readers over the next week and a half! We can't wait to see you!