Archive for September, 2008

Best Times "In Route"

Some of us have been carpooling lately because of the gas shortage. However, every once in awhile it leaves you stranded. Jeanne had to meet up with her hubby and had no way to get there because she had rode in with Bethany. I volunteered to drive her. Since we both run at about Mach 2, sometimes our greatest times are “in route.” Which is kind of funny given that Rey had said that a few weeks ago in middle school ministry … that his best times and talks were picking up and dropping off kids. Not many people talk about “in route” ministry, probably because it doesn’t sound very glamorous and there are no lights, bells and whistles involved. But often times, it is the very place where life change occurs.

Today we were talking about a recent message we had both heard and I got bold enough to say “I don’t have buy in with all of that.” Then we had a great discussion regarding it. I love having a boss safe enough to share heart, feelings and thoughts with. 98% of the time we totally agree and are so like-minded it’s often scary, then there is that 2% where we are at totally different ends of the spectrum. The fact that we can respectfully share, often passionately, our different views and not feel threatened in any way is cool. It definitley makes the journey fun for sure.

Master’s, the Cadre and NYLC 09 are in full swing now. Time is so scarce, but I love it. In all of my life, I’ve never met anyone like Jeanne when it comes to multiplication. She has raised up more leaders and placed them in full-time ministry (equally in the business world as well) … and through mentoring, coaching and by sometimes just being a “mom” helped keep them there. They truly dot the globe.

Blizzard in the Atlanta

Ok, we aren’t having a blizzard in Atlanta, but we might as well have with the gas crisis. Pray for our churches today. The gas crisis is REAL, hopefully it will be resolved sometime this week. If I had to guess, about 90% of the gas stations are out of gas. The ones that do have it, cars are 30-40 deep waiting in line for it.

Churches will take a hit today. Spiritually they can’t afford it, that’s a given and goes without saying, but financially as well. Anything considered discretionary driving is being drastically reduced. People will not come to church today, so they have gas to drive to work tomorrow. Many churches in the inner city are struggling to make budget as it is, that’s after they’ve already trimmed it down to the essentials, the gas crisis will not help in that effort.

So, pray for ATL churches today and wherever else the gas crisis might be felt.

Gasoline in the ATL

Ok, this whole gas thing is starting to get weird. The two stations, both by the interstate, that have consistently had gas … the QT by my house and the QT by the church … were like ghost towns today … No Gas!

Cadre 2008-2009

We had the first year calls last week and the second year call is today. Just the way the first year was interacting, I can already tell it’s going to be a blast. This year’s cadre are from 30 states and Canada. Since we busted into Canada, can we say we’re international now? (j/k)

North Carolina
South Carolina
West Virginia
New Jersey
New York

Knowing their story makes all the difference in the world

We’ve got a family of five kids in our youth ministry and they are pretty much stair steps … four of them in middle school. I love them dearly, but they are a little on the wild, unfocused side which can be irritating on ocassion … that is until I learned their story this week. I’m reminded, once again, how knowing someone’s story makes all the difference in the world.

The mom was/is a drug addict. When the twins were born, the doctors said don’t bond with them, they aren’t going to live … and if they do, they will probably be blind, bedridden, etc. Although the mom was a drug addict, she called in a woman she knew to pray for them … and pray she did. The kids turned out fine, once again maybe a little wild and unfocued at times, but fine nonetheless. In the end, all the kids were adopted by the women who prayed for them. I can’t even imagine what the oldest was exposed to. I do know they are walking miracles even to have survived. While I will still correct and redirect, I have a feeling both my patience and hugs will be on the rise.

While I get the wonderful opportunity to put my hands to a number of thing, I think my first love will always be middle school ministry. I casted vision for the middle school side of Oxygen to the new MC students today. I couldn’t help but realize the passion for the ministry that comes so natural for me.

If you were wondering about gas in the ATL

If you were wondering whether the gas shortage from Ike was real in Atlanta, it so is! 6 of 8 gas stations I passed today were without gas. The other two looked liked a war zone with lines into the street. I think I will fill up about 3 a.m. We use special gas here in the ATL to reduce pollution. Fortunately, the governor just lifted the requirement in order to alleviate the run on gas.

722 and Traffic Jams

Went to the last 722 tonight and Jarrett Stevens did an outstanding job of leading, inspiring and encouraging them in change. The title of the message was Next Is Now! Given that he’s probably been asked “What’s Next?” a gazillion times, it was the perfect title. He challenged us to go out and be the church … in the city, on the basketball court, etc. I had heard the saying a million times, you might be the only Jesus some will ever see. I like it, but like Jarrett’s wording better tonight … you might be the only “church” some will ever see. We’re in ramp up season and things are extremely busy. It felt good to hit the pause button tonight. It’s only Tuesday night and I’m ready for my Saturday off.

A funny sidenote. There was a serious traffic jam when I went home this morning. Here’s some thoughts:

You know you are in a bad traffic jam when…
1. It takes 2 hours and 5 minutes to make your normal 15 minute drive.
2. You have time to clean out your overstuffed glove compartment.
3. Even the alternative route was wretched.
4. When the people on the radio say that the police said the accident should be cleared in …. another 3 hours, which was already 3 hours after it had happened.
5. You feel like you need to pray and ask Jesus into your heart again when it’s all said and done. If it is possible to lose your salvation, I think I did it three times in those two hours.

We got back from Monday’s Opening Chapel at 2 a.m. this morning … guess what awaited us? A2 a.m. traffic jam … they stopped traffic on 285 for an hour to hang an exit sign … ugh!