Monday, December 31, 2007

Christmas Eve Wii Boxing Match

Here's a short video of some Wii boxing at our Christmas Eve gathering.

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Sunday, December 30, 2007

Worship Set: New Harvest Church

Today our songs were awesome!

"All Because of Jesus" - Fee
"Everything Glorious" - David Crowder Band
"New" - Bethany Dillon
"God is with Us" - Michael Olson

There were 9 or 10 baptisms...lost count there were so many!

Friday, December 28, 2007

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Waiting in the Doctor's Office

Bored and in pain...let's get this diagnosis underway!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Front Entrance

Looks nice eh?

Friday, December 21, 2007

Date Night

Yesterday we got some gift cards from our boss! Movies, chipotle, and starbucks! So we decided to go out last night. We saw Alvin and The Chipmunks. It was actually really funny...especially the first act. Most people won't give the movie a chance, but it's a good family flick. You'll at least have to rent it.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Blessings

There are many, many blessings that I enjoy in my life. Many things that are comforts, not necessities. In ministry we have blessings or tools that we use. I am overwhelmed with the recent blessings our student ministries department has received from individuals. A family recently donated 6 brand new black-leather-couches with 3 area rugs (pictures to come later) and another individual bought us a new iMac with new visual support software (propresenter) and even a new printer/scanner! There's new sound equipment and staging and theatrical curtains! I'm telling you...we are blessed and I believe we are being blessed because God is creating something here. He's creating an environment where students and volunteers will experience life-change. A place where students will be inspired to live above reproach, to honor Christ with their lives and change the world for the glory of God! I'm blessed. I'm feeling blessed. How about you?

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Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Cheronn Sent Us This Video

Catalyst (High School Ministry Environment)

Thank You to Joshua Dildine for the design on our logo for Catalyst. I will be chronicling how launching a new high school ministry environment changes the feel and look of our junior high school ministry environment (Turnpike). I'm very excited and can't wait for January 6th to roll around. I think students are going to be very surprised at what we've got planned for them. Check back frequently to see our progress!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Man Down! Man down!

A fish almost died tonight...until Kelly pulled it out of the drain and I gave it the ol' 1, 2, 3, clear!

How has God been faithful?

Here are two responses that students wrote.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Tech dude

Focusing the lights right now. Also doing a bit of interpretive dance.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Preview

Are you ready for Sunday?

Thursday, December 13, 2007

The Power of Positive Prevention

This post is of special interest to any parents of teens, college students, youth leaders, or human-kind who might read this blog.

Yesterday I recieved a bi-monthly newsletter that the Youth Transition Network, (they also run this site) puts out. Recently they conducted a survey of on camera interviews, which are partially viewable via youtube, with 700 high school and college students. Here are some of the highlights from their article entitled:

"The Power of Positive Prevention!"


"The interviews seems to indicate that students with open parents who invest in relationship rather than rules and allow their teens to make decisions about the activities they will participate in are more mature and leading much less of a dual life than the students whose parents depend upon restrictions and consequences to protect and prevent sin in their teens' lives...

...The parents who laid down their lives for their daughter, focusing on discussion and relationship while sacrificing their control over her, gave her no reason to hide her sin. In fact, she said during the interview on camera that, the thing she will miss most when she leaves for college next year is her ability to talk with her parents about everything in her life...

[This paragraph is about two families. One that put a lot of rules in front of their daughter and another who allowed her to make more decisions on her own.]...Their [parents] percieved gamble [releasing control over their student] paid off; their teen, who attends parties (like Jesus and the disciples did), is a non-drinking virgin who sees the foolishness of the party scene for what it is. The other girl whose parents depended upon restriction and consequences, had a daughter who, with the help of her Christian friends, subverted the rules when to parties, ended up having sex and the ensuing guilt has led to even deeper issues in her young life...

...Recent studies show that adolescence is lasting longer and longer, ranging into the mid-twenties in our youth culture today...

...In short it appears that the longer we treat them as kids, the longer they behave like kids!...

...In Biblical times, this [maturity development] happened young: at 12, 13, 14 years old they were getting married. As our culture has become more dangerous, we have extended our protection and thus attempted control of our teens up to the day they graduate and then boom (!) they leave home and the freedom hits them in the face...

...Unfortunately it appears many parents believe that the rules and control are working because their teens are obedient at home and getting good grades...

...They say they are great actors and liars and that they are getting aroudn the rules and controls, because they work together to do so!...

...Thus, they do not learn, but rather wallow in their shallow and destructive victory over a perceived oppression...

...Maybe God designed our kids to start making some important decisions for themselves, younger. Maybe when we control them past twelve, they really do take this as a lack of belief and trust, as they say they do. Maybe this robs them of the most powerful prevention tool: 1) The relationship of a parent that offers belief in their ability to follow God and make good decisions. 2) The trust that teens seek, which Jesus extended to His disciples even after they deserted Him. 3) The grace to not pounce when they, like the disciples, do dumb things."

What do you think?

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Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Jim Gaffigan - Comedian

I got this text from my mother-in-law just a few minutes ago and I'd thought I'd share the treasure she found with the world.

"There is a comedian that we watched the other night. His name is Jim Gaffigan. If you go on youtube he does a bit on hot pockets that is hillarious"



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Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Psalm 147:1

Praise the Lord.

How good it is to sing praises to our
       God,
    how pleasant and fitting to praise
       him!

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Monday, December 10, 2007

Last Sunday @ CW - It has come and gone!

Yesterday was a huge day in for our church family. We put a lot energy into making the last day at Clovis West High School special and different. In our student ministry environment, we did a little exercise. The whole morning was about Faithfulness and the definition we gave the students is this: "Faithfulness is doing what you've committed to do, no matter what the circumstances." I gave our small groups each a poster board. On that board they were to answer this question, "How has God been faithful to you?" We got the whole range of goofy to amazing. One student wrote, "He kept me alive when I didn't want to live." This student tried to commit suicide a couple of years ago, but God kept him to finishing the job. Another student wrote, "I've never broken a guitar string." So, as you can see...some students really engaged the topic, while others saw it as an opportunity to let their goofiness shine brightly. I love both extremes!

After our services we had to move all of our equipment (the whole church enventory) to our new site! Wow, that was energizing. More on the move and what happens as a result in the days and weeks to come.

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Thursday, December 06, 2007

American Christmas Spectacular

Seriously funny! These guys make me laugh. Good luck with the event guys!

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Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Launching Catalyst



High school students don't necessarily want to be around these types of hands on games. At least ours don't. But let's imagine for a minute that there were no junior high students in their environment. Oh look, now's there's room for the goofy students to shine, the loud ones to roar and the stoic ones to be stoic in the midst of crazy high schoolers.

I am really excited to see how our high school dynamic changes when we launch Catalyst!

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Monday, December 03, 2007

Celebrate: Leaving "Lecture 1"

There are a ton of negative and positive things about using a school as your meeting place to "do" church. It is awesome for students that go to that school becuase they are already familiar with the campus and can find their way around. It's terrible for students that go to that school because it feels like "school" instead of a church home. That's why I'm really excited for our move into the Plant. We have ONE last Sunday @ Clovis West High School and then New Harvest Church will be in it's very own facility! It's funny and strange the various expectations people have for a church that is mobile verses one that's not. I've heard people say things like, "I can't wait until we move to the place because then we can have adult Sunday school classes" or "I can't wait becuase people will start wearing their Sunday best." Are you kidding me? Let me tell you my "I can't wait" list.

I can't wait because...
  • We'll have our own space that doesn't feel like a school
  • The room students meet in won't be called "lecture 1"
  • We can blow people's expectations out of the water by not becoming "churchy"
  • We won't need less volunteers (as some people suspect) but many more for the hundreds that will be coming to check us out
  • My commute on Sundays will be shorter :)
  • Set-Up/Tear-Down...not much
  • We will be able to launch a new ministry for high school students (Catalyst)
  • Re:action, our new college ministry, will be able to move into a larger space than my living room
  • Erica's car won't be full of supplies all the time :P
  • We can have adequate space and technology to train our volunteers like they should be trained
  • God is going to rock our socks off with how he's going to use the facility for his glory
  • The community can see a physical presence to represent we are a real church
  • People who come every once-in-a-while because they hate sitting in our folding blue chairs, will be there more frequently
  • 5th and 6th grades will be able to launch into their own environment (once we build the team)
  • Turnpike, our Jr. High environment, will be without High Schoolers for once...which will enable them to grow (because small trees don't get much light in a tall forrest)
  • All of our High Schoolers will have no excuse for serving during the 10:45am service hour, because their environment will be moved to the evening!
  • And more...
Do you have a list?

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Happy Birthday

Today we went to Ryan Clark's birthday party and we're at Kristina Solberg's birthday right now. Happy birthday to both of you!

Volunteer Lunch

Today, we had an inspirational lunch and volunteer meeting in the new building!

Check out all these volunteers! Wow!