Sunday, February 25, 2007

Senior study & Planting in my kids

I just ushered out 6 seniors from my house who stayed 2 hours after our official "ending time." We are in our 2nd week of our 8 week Senior Study which is at my house. My heart is so full of joy. Doing this study has reminded me about why I am in student ministry, discipling students. I love studying theology with them. I love having half of them stay around for 2 hours extra hours in my family room talking about worship, their families, college, and "whatever else comes up." Tonight we spent a ton of time dealing with Christology. We read from of The Imitation of Christ, we talked about the Hypostatic Union and the Kenosis, laughed and ate together. It was awesome to see them wrestling with how their Christology is going to affect the way they choose to live in College.

The best part about this study is that it is at my house. Julie and my kids get to be here. I love serving with my wife. I love having my kids around. We broke open the Bible tonight and immediately the boys wanted their new Bibles they got for Christmas. It was so cool to see them WANTING to participate. I looked down and they were thumbing through the pages as we were pouring over the passages dealing with the Hypostatic Union. At one point, while Hannah was speaking, Noah put his Bible down and leaned forward and was listening to her. My kids are watching. I'm glad they are. It's overwhelming for me tonight to think that in some small way the Class of 2007 is going to be part of my son's spiritual heritage. Sure they are young, but I'll never pass up an opportunity to have a seed planted in the hearts of my children.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

Happy Birthday Adah

One year ago today I went from the burial of a friend's mom to the hospital and God blessed us with our beautiful addition! Your are amazing girl! We love you! Your smile, happiness and beautiful eyes captured us during your first year. We can wait to see who you will become!

Thursday, February 22, 2007

May the students COME

"Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost. 2 Why spend money on what is not bread, and your labor on what does not satisfy? Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good, and your soul will delight in the richest of fare. 3 Give ear and come to me; hear me, that your soul may live. I will make an everlasting covenant with you, my faithful love promised to David."

These words from the heart of Isaiah have been part of my prayer this week as we move our students focus to the last words of Jesus from the Cross.

God, hear our prayer for the students in our community, state and all who encompass this generation. They are so thirsty. They want us to listen. May the soul of this generation delight in the richest fare that you have to offer. May they see that what you offer is good. May their souls feel alive in you. May they words they study from your lips on the cross cause them to thirst for your passion. May they see that their commitment to you has a history connected to David. May the students in our community give their ears to you and come. Amen.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

The Sexualization of Girls

This report is a MUST read. Download it and give it away. It's a great resource. There are good reminders in here about what in our culture is contributing to the sexualization of our girls:

Music Videos
Music Lyrics
Cartoons & Animation
Sports Media
Video/Computer Games

My heart aches for the high school girls in our group. It aches for the single women in our church. May our girls and women first start with the Bible's contribution of what makes a woman. May our girls and women then be able to effectively live in this world and bear witness to the truth from Proverbs 31:30, "Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised."

Monday, February 19, 2007

Pastoral Retreat W/ Wives

We are at the Hideaway Retreat Center as a staff with our wives. We got here last night and will be leaving on tomorrow at noon. Last night we had a great time watching "Beyond The Pale" by Jim Gaffigan. This morning Dr. Jim Means, from Denver Seminary and the first senior pastor of our church, shared with us his 12 Commandments of a Serious Disciple. I first heard this in 1998 while I was a student in the MDiv program at Den Sem. Good stuff!

It's been fun to connect relationally over the meals and we laughed a ton last night while we were watching Gaffigan!

Everyone is on their own right now. Julie's napping. I am looking out at Pikes Peak and staring at a hot tub that is calling for Trevor and I to take a dip.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

I've never been to church before

I've heard this phrase a lot in the last three months in our student ministry. Our students are bringing their friends who have never been to church! What's more, they are bringing them on Sunday mornings and everyone of them has showed up a second and a third time. Today, two more students joined us upstairs and had not, before today, ever dawned the door of a church in their lives! My heart is deeply encouraged that our students aren't just desiring that their friends encounter Christ following students when they come, but they also desire that their friends encounter God through His Word. The Word of God is revealing the glory of God. I am so humbled to have the privilege to stand before our community of students and make known His promises that will stand forever. My heart has been focusing on these words from the heart of Isaiah in his 40th chapter,

"And the glory of the Lord will be revealed, and all mankind together will see it. For the mouth of the Lord has spoken." A voice says, "Cry out." And I said, "What shall I cry?" "All men are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field. The grass withers and the flowers fall, because the breath of the Lord blows on them. Surely the people are grass. The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God stands forever." - Isa 40:5-8 (NIV) Amen!

Friday, February 16, 2007

Serving in student ministry

Our students have been serving this school year and it's blown me away. On Wednesday night this week they opened up the church and invited families from our church to drop their kids off for a few hours so they could go out and have a date night with free babysitting. Now that's a GREAT way to show love! It was an awesome night! We had 30 little ankle biters running around the building. Snacks. It was encouraging not just to see our students serving the church, but hearing them talk about the priority of marriage and looking forward to being part of a church someday where the high school students in their church might choose to do something like this.

Service is one of our priorities. It was awesome to see our students grab a hold of this opportunity to raise up the priority of marriage and do a little babysitting. I am excited for what lies ahead as our students seek to SHOW the love of Christ to others.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

My 2 sweethearts

I luv U both! Happy Valentine's Day!

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Christian discipline...

This is awesome! I want our students to grab a hold of this during there four years in our community of students.

One man wrote, “Christian discipline means…a progressive weakening of man’s instinctive self-confidence, and of the self-despair to which this leads, and the growth of radical confidence in God.”

(C.K. Barrett in David Prior, The Suffering and the Glory, 31)

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Village 7 Jr. High Retreat

I had a great time with the students and leaders from Village 7 Church in Colorado Springs at Snow Mountain Ranch this weekend.

"God is Love" - 1 John 4:16

"God Loves You" - Luke 19:1-10

"God's Love is Touching Your Nose" - Psalm 26:2-5

I loved teaching these messages! They did more in my life than the students...I am convinced!They grabbed my heart! It was great to do ministry with an old friend, Mike Masino, who used to be an intern at our church in 1994 when I volunteered in the Jr. High ministry! Back to the grind this week getting ready for part II with our high school students on developing REAL Spiritual Community!

Overcoming the 5 dysfunctions of a TEAM

I am pumped for round 2 (02.12) of our pastoral staff meeting to work through these principles. Two weeks ago we met for the first time to discuss:

What is a team?
Are we a team?
Will we commit to the team?
Overview of the 5 dysfunctions.
Were assigned to take the Myers-Briggs for our meeting tomorrow.

I am all read up of the first dysfunction - "Lack of trust" and I've got my Myers-Briggs results back - ESTJ (Extraversion, Sensing, Thinking, Judging).

I'm ready!

Saturday, February 10, 2007

The Fray @ the Grammy's

It's not everyday that a bunch of kids who went to church together in Colorado get nominated for two Grammy's! I can't wait to see how they do tomorrow.

Nominated for:

Best Pop Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal

"Over My Head (Cable Car)


Best Rock Performance By A Duo Or Group With Vocal

"How to Save a Life"

Friday, February 09, 2007


I am finally doing it! I've been encouraged for over 10 years to start taking a PRD - Personal Retreat Day. Hey, it's never to late to start doing what is right. I will be heading up to my dad's condo in Winter Park and spending at least 7 hours alone before I head up to Snow Mountain Ranch tonight where I get the privilege to speak to a group of jr. high students from Coloraodo Springs!

Here's what I am thinking is going to make for a great 1st personal retreat day.

1. The drive to Winter Park! The sun. The snow on the mountains. Listening to Daughtry.
2. Evaluating January.
3. Looking at February.
4. Finalizing Farch/April/May Calendar.
5. Read parts of - Presence Centered Youth Ministry, and War of Words.
6. Read the Word.
7. Pray for my leaders.
8. Look over my DDS - Description of a Discipled Student - Are we accomplishing anything?
9. Read Kenda Creasy Dean's article, "Somebody Save Me: Passion, Salvation and the Smallville Effect. I'll blog on this next week!
10. Praying through the messages I will be speaking this weekend!

I can't wait!

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Sticky notes

Last night was our quarterly leaders meeting with all of the adults who faithfully serve the students in our spiritual community. Everyone got a hunk of sticky notes and was asked to write down all of the things (one per sticky note) that came to mind when asked this question, "What's God been doing since September in our high school community of students?" We wheeled up our white board and each leader stood in front of us and shared how they have seen God working and put their sticky notes on the board. After we were done, we just sat there and looked at all that God has done and knew that it was only a small piece of the puzzle. It would of taken days to talk about all that God's done!

It's a privilege to serve Christ who is building His Church! I couldn't help but think this verse.

Ephesians 2:10 "For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do."

It was awesome to see what's happened, but I can't wait for what's been prepared.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Lost - oh my!

Tonight 16 weeks begin....oh my!

I went here and go fired up!
We are already planning our party for the final two hours in May!

Hurting students

Today I had coffee with Rich Van Pelt. What a guy. He's been such a blessing in my life over the past 11 years of working in student ministry at my church. He reminded me today that I don't have to go looking in our community to find hurting students to make disciples. They show up every Sunday and Wednesday. They're already a part of our church. They're cutting, suicidal and whole host of other things.
The question our student ministry must wrestle with is how are we doing caring for every student that attends our church? Do we have all their names? The ones that are part of our core and the ones that are on the fringes? Rich is speaking at all of the youth specialties CORE events on this topic. He also refreshed his book, Helping Teenagers in Crisis, which is a must own! I am hoping he'll be at our Southwest Connection Network meeting of youth workers.

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Applying the teaching

I had the privilege of speaking to our community of high school students on the subject of spiritual community this past Sunday. We started in Psalm 133 and then went through a bunch Scriptures to stir them up! I had a new experience this Sunday! Apparently some of our students are fired up about our community connecting! Tracie & Tonia stood up and announced to the group that their home would be open on Friday night for everyone to come and hang out.

Talk about applying the teaching on the spot! It was awesome!

Monday, February 05, 2007

Raising Prosti-TOTS?

Newsweek asks if we are raising these in this article, "Girls Gone Bad
Paris, Britney, Lindsay & Nicole: They seem to be everywhere and they may not be wearing underwear. Tweens adore them and teens envy them. But are we raising a generation of 'prosti-tots'?"

Great question.

Quote that captured me, "Twelve- to 14-year-olds are probably the most vulnerable to stars' influence." Yep!

If Newsweek is admitting it, why do so many churches who start student ministries, or have student ministries in existence, make middle school ministry the part-time or volunteer led ministry? I am blessed to work with Matt, who is doing a GREAT job of leading our middle school ministry. He's part-time. He needs to be full-time. One of the things our leadership is wrestling with is how can they pay a full-time salary to a guy who oversees four grades (9-12)and then pay a full-time salary to a guy who oversees two grades (7-8)? My answer - it isn't number of grades, it's scope of ministry and the simple fact that they are the most vulnerable to influence! We have two full-time middle school pastors in our area.

A community of students

I am so grateful to be able to apply theses verses from 1 Peter 5:2-4 to this community of students,
“2Be shepherds of God's flock that is under your care, serving as overseers—not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not greedy for money, but eager to serve; 3not lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock. 4And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that will never fade away.”

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Thanks Brett

This morning I am pumped! Favre is coming back for another year. What does that mean? I get to see him play the Broncos this fall at Invesco Field at Mile High!

I am looking forward to seeing him on his back!

Friday, February 02, 2007

The coldest day ever

That's right. This morning it was the coldest it's ever been. Minus 18 degrees. That's without windchill. I was shoveling the driveway at 6:00 a.m. and I will vouch for the COLD.

This cold weather, snow for 7 straight weeks, has been awesome for one reason in particular, I've been able to spend a lot of time with my boys shoveling! We've created so many memories, but one will stick out to me forever that has happened every time we grabbed our shovels.

After we've finished our driveway and sidewalk Noah asks, "Now who can we help?" Sure he wants to keep shoveling and stay outside, but there is something inside this kid and it moves me. It's absolutely wonderful! Hearing this again last night made me think about our students. They've all got a part of them that looks like this, they want to help. The food drive, Monday Missions, working in the Compa Food warehouse, ushering in church, planning events, reaching out to those in our group who are on the fringe, cleaning and elderly woman's home, spending time in a nursing home and feeding the homeless at Jesus to the World.

It may be the coldest day ever, but it can't freeze the heart.