Saturday, January 26, 2008

I'm moving

Well, not me... not yet anyway...

My blog is moving to

Much love,

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

A shout out for a shout out

I'm really down with Craig Groeschel giving a shout out to Andy Stanley before the start of's How to Be Rich series.

I think it's pretty tight that he pretty much just straight up said, "I stole this from Andy." I love that honesty.

P.S. - the original "How to Be Rich" series at NPCC was pretty dominant.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Profiles of mediocrity!

Ben Arment made a post about fitting volunteers to needs rather than fitting needs to volunteers.

I think that a lot of times in the church world, we're so happy when someone volunteers at all that we'll stick them wherever our most glaring need is, regardless of how capable or gifted they are in that area. What ends up happening most times when we simply put a body into a need is we fill a whole bunch of needs with mediocrity.

I would rather have some needs go unfilled, but use volunteers in areas where they are gifted than simply have a need and stick the next person who volunteers to help out into it.

Here's why:

I don't think mediocrity invokes change in its surroundings. Mediocrity doesn't invoke passion. Greatness does. I would rather, as a church and as a person, be great at a few
things and lousy (or negligent) at some others than be mediocre across the board.

(here comes the prototypical starbucks example)

Take Starbucks, for example. Starbucks makes great coffee. They don't really do anything else that great. But (almost) nobody complains about how their food isn't that great. And, although it's lame to charge for the internet at a coffee shop, that doesn't really hurt their business that much. Starbucks is wildly popular because they do one thing and do it well.

I'd rather the church do one thing (or a few things) and do them well than to do a bunch of things very very average.

Friday, January 18, 2008

I love the guys I work with...

I just heard this one:

"If I'd a known he was gonna do that to you, I'd have called Moses so he could build an ark...

or was that Jonah?"


As an aspiring church-planter (hopefully launching by this fall), I'd like to attend two conferences this year. I've got a few places in mind, but I'd like to hear your opinions.

What conferences do I absolutely need to attend?

Going to F-Ville

I talked to one of my friends who lives in NW Arkansas last night to make some arrangements. I'm heading to Fayetteville, AR at the end of February to see if that's where God is leading me. I'm kind of thinking it might be.

I'll spend a few days in the town meeting people, driving around, praying around the town, maybe visit a couple of churches already there. Hopefully God will make His plan for the vision he's birthed in me clear then.

It's really scary and really exciting.

I'm praying that God will lead me to a man (or woman) who shares the vision that I have.

Thursday, January 17, 2008


Scott Williams alerted me that my blog hasn't been allowing comments from non-blogspot users. This has been corrected. I am sorry.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

the saga continues...

This will be a long post:

Where I left off yesterday, I had just taken Courtney's number out of my phone. I was totally content with this decision.

Until the next day when I was driving through Stillwater when I really felt God burdening me for Courtney. He told me, "I still want you to talk to Courtney about this."

I told him back, "no, I don't want to."

"I want you to."

"I've already made this girl cry once (that's another story), I'm not going to do it again by bringing this to her!"

"I want you to."

At this point, I literally yelled out loud at God, "No! I'm not going to do this!"

"Yes you are."


So from there I made a couple more attempts to talk to Courtney. It was the same story as before. Finally, I decided I wasn't going to be able to ever talk to her about what God was placing on my heart. So I decided to write her a letter. It was the hardest letter I've ever written. But in it I poured out everything God had placed on my heart about her. By the time I wrote this letter, I'd had 11 dreams about Courtney (when you have that many, you start counting).

The day I mailed the letter, the dreams stopped.

I didn't see Courtney after that for over a month. I mean, I didn't see her walking across campus, I didn't see her at her sorority house, I didn't see her anywhere. At all. And I didn't see her in my dreams.

Until Finals Week. For the first time in over a month, I saw Courtney in a dream. The next day I saw her and talked to her for the first time since I mailed the letter. It was just a chance encounter on the street, with another friend present, so we didn't talk about anything. Then I went to Minnesota for the summer. And continued to dream about Courtney.

What was weird about the whole thing was that from this point on, whenever I would think about Courtney during the day, I wouldn't dream about her. When I would go a period of time without thinking about her, I would see her in my dreams. By the time I came back from the summer, I'd had 18 total dreams about her.

I still felt that God wasn't done with Courtney in my life.

The first day of school, I told my friend Nick the story about Courtney. That night I had another dream about her. In this dream, I talked to her about the letter I'd written her and basically told her that I still wanted to be friends if she was willing. What didn't register as significant at the time was that, in my dream, this conversation took place walking down Monroe Street.

The one place where I had consistently seen Courtney in the past was at a large praise and worship gathering called Overflow (Tuesdays at nine). So when I dreamed about having this conversation with Courtney, I sort of envisioned it taking place at Overflow. That's not where it happened in the dream though. I didn't even place any significance on where we were in the dream.

The morning after I had this dream, I woke up and saw Nick at breakfast. I told him about it. I said, "I'm going to talk to her today."

Nick and I headed to class, walking north down the west side of Monroe. About halfway down, Nick said that we ought to cross the street. As soon as we turned, I just laughed, and said to Nick, "look." Courtney was walking down the street on the other side. We were on a collision course. Once we crossed, Nick ended up talking with one of Courtney's friends, leaving Courtney and I to talk alone. I didn't talk about what I needed to talk to her about. Because I envisioned it happening after Overflow - despite what I saw in my dream.

That night I went to Overflow and saw her there. When the service ended, she was gone. I didn't get to talk to her.

A week later, I had another dream about her. In this dream, I saw Courtney walking down the sidewalk ahead of me, alone. I tried to catch up to her to talk. She was walking so fast I couldn't catch up.

The next morning, I was walking to class, and I saw Courtney walking, alone, just a ways ahead of me. The guy I was walking with asked "why are you walking so fast?" "I just have long legs I guess..."

That wasn't really why. I was trying to catch up. I couldn't. (At this point I think God was just telling me, "hey, listen to me all the way, don't put your twist on what I show you." Basically, he was just taunting me).

The next week, I finally got to talk to Courtney. I felt like I had fulfilled the burden God had given me.

But something still didn't feel right. I kept having dreams about her. None of the things I confronter Courtney about seemed to change in her. And where was the benefit for me in all this? I mean, shouldn't this story end up with us getting married and living happily ever after or something? 28 dreams about one person, when the next closest person had two? What was the point if there was no change in her and nothing in it for me!?!?!

Then one night I was driving through Tulsa and it all hit me what was in it for me. This whole process had taught me a lot about myself and about God. God used this to teach me how to listen to him. How to obey him. When it doesn't make sense. How to pray to him. How to be honest with him. How to trust him.

I don't know if there was ever any change in Courtney from this episode. I haven't seen her in over two years (so the whole getting married and living happily ever after thing isn't looking too likely at this point). But I know there was a change in me. And maybe that's what God was after all along.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Living the dream...

Last week I wrote about how Scott Williams was the man of my dream. Today I want to talk about a series of dreams I had about three years ago.

To give a little background, before all this started, I NEVER dreamed about people I knew. At all. In the two years prior to this, I'd had MAYBE three dreams about people I knew. That's it. So what happened next was a total outlier.

It all started one night when I had a dream about a friend of mine (we weren't that close of friends). I'll call her Courtney (to protect the innocent and stuff). In this dream, Courtney cussed like a sailor, which is rather funny because she never talks like that.

Well, it just so happened that I saw her the night after I dreamed about her. The dream was random enough that I told her about it. She was like, "I don't like that Courtney!" And I told her, "I don't like that Courtney either!" And that was it.

Until I had another dream about her the next night. And the next. So in three nights, I had as many dreams about one person than I'd had about all the people I knew in the previous two years.

At this point, I think I should probably clarify that I didn't like this girl. You know, like like. I mean, I liked her like Kevin liked Paul, but not like Kevin liked Winnie. I mean, that would kind of make sense to dream about a girl you liked (of course, I'd never dreamed about any of the girls I actually did like...), but that wasn't the case with Courtney.

Anyway, during this time, God sort of gave me a burden to talk to Courtney about something in her life. So I'd see her some crowded place and see if she wanted to get together and get ice cream or something during the week (okay, basically, I asked her on a date, I see now, but I wasn't thinking of it as a date at the time). We'd make specific plans, and then I'd call her, and she wouldn't answer her phone (the truth is, she never answered he phone for anyone. not me, not her best friends, not her sister. And she didn't check her voicemails either, so that would have been worthless.). So I'd see her a couple of weeks later and ask if she wanted to get together some time during the week, and she would recommend specific plans, and then when I'd call her at the planned time, she wouldn't answer.

Now, when people aren't reliable like that, it absolutely drives me nuts! I hate it when people don't call me back! So I was pretty fed up with Courtney. The final time she didn't follow through on our plans, I got so frustrated that I actually took her number out of my phone! I wasn't going to call her again and get angry when she didn't answer. I was done with her.

Until the next day...

I'll pick the story back up tomorrow.

P.S. - Danica McKeller gets 50 bonus points in my book for writing a book called "Math Doesn't Suck".

Thursday, January 10, 2008

I hate Godtube

Michael Lukaszewski made a post today about an article (in which he was quoted) concerning YouTube vs. GodTube.

Can I just say that I hate GodTube? Maybe that's too strong, but I really do. I hate separating Christianity from the real world.

The reasoning behind using GodTube, for many people, apparently, is to avoid the "bad stuff" that appears on YouTube.

You know what? The world is full of "bad stuff." Christianity ought to be a light amidst the "bad stuff." But instead, in our self-righteousness, we separate ourselves from the "bad stuff." It makes me sick.

Maybe, instead of avoiding the risk of someone who watches a Christian video on YouTube seeing something "inappropriate," we should run the risk of someone who's watching "inappropriate" videos on YouTube stumbling across something about Jesus or the Church.

We're called to be a city on a hill. A lamp that shines bright. But instead we cloak ourselves to "protect" ourselves while those we protect ourselves from go to Hell!

I work with about 100 frac hands day-in and day-out. Maybe (maybe!) three of them know Christ. And these guys are crude. It's the oilfield. One of the most notoriously crude industries there is. And I love it. By being open about my relationship with Jesus, by engaging people who don't talk and act "appropriately," I've been able to share the light with people who otherwise would have no connection to Christ.

No, we shouldn't engage in "inappropriateness" ourselves. But Christians who run and hide from the world's "inappropriateness" make me absolutely sick.

What do you think on YouTube vs. GodTube?

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

The Man of My Dreams

Yes. Scott Williams is the man of my dreams. Well, at least, he was the man of my dream.

I've never met Scott face-to-face, but last night I dreamt that I did. Interestingly enough, in my dream, Scott was about 5'2". And his wife was white (they're both black).

So the whole thing was pretty weird.

I wonder about dreams some times. Do they mean something? Do they ALL mean something? Do any of them mean something?

I think they do sometimes. I had a pretty crazy series of dreams about 2-3 years ago, all about the same person, so I definitely think God communicates to us through dreams. I just don't know how often. I'll write about it later this week.

Monday, January 7, 2008

The people I work with...

I just heard a guy talking about his new phone... it went a little something like this:

"My daughter (she's 18) got one of those blueberries or blackberries or whatever the F they are, so she gave me this (showing his Razor).

"I started looking around all some of this music she has on here, some of these songs, ever other word's a cuss word (in a complaining voice).

"What is up with that S?"

Can't you really complain about the language in a song if you sandwich that sentence between an F-bomb and an S-bomb?

Apparently so.

Sunday, January 6, 2008

My iPod is full!

When I bought my iPod (used) two years ago, I thought the thing was WAY too big for my purposes (and it's only one of those old-school 20 GB ones).

Yeah.. I have 192.7 MB left on it. This is a problem. I'm either going to have to take some stuff off of it, or get a new one...


such a dilemma...

Thursday, January 3, 2008

The best laid plans...

So I'm sitting out here on a frac job right now. It's about 24°. It was down in the teens earlier. We were supposed to do two stages (each stage is supposed to take about 3.5 hours, with about 3 hours between stages) yesterday, two stages today, and finish up with one stage on Friday. Well, yesterday the cold weather caused the diesel to gel up on one of our main pieces of equipment. We didn't get started until 12:20 PM (over 5 hours late). Therefore, we only finished one stage yesterday. Today, water transfer's (a third party that transfers water from a pond to some tanks that we pump out of) lines are frozen. So far we're two hours late because of them. Who knows how much longer it will be.

We finally got started a couple of hours late, and this job is going to take about an hour longer than designed. Hopefully the next three stages will treat better, or who knows how long we'll be out here.

I've always been real bad about trying to plan WAY too much. I used to plan out time to be spontaneous. (Does it really count as spontaneous if it's planned spontaneity?) This job has ruined my ability to plan. It's been great.

James tells us about how we should plan our lives. I used to plan the when, the where, the how long, the what down to a T in my life. James warns us to instead listen for the Lord's will and "do this or that." This job was

I'm not saying we shouldn't ever plan for anything, but I think there's danger in planning too much. When we spend a lot of energy in making our plans, we can often tune out to hearing the Lord's plans - especially if he calls an audible.

This job has taught me the difference between planning for and preparing for. I can't really plan for anything in this job, but I have to prepare for just about anything.

How does the difference between planning for and preparing for present itself in your life?

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

What is a Ham Fighter?

I get asked the question a lot: what is a Ham Fighter?

Well, really, there's no such thing. The name comes from the Japanese baseball team, the Nippon Ham Fighters. The thing is, almost no one in America has ever heard of the city of Nippon Ham, so they assume that "Nippon" is the city and "Ham Fighters" is the mascot.

Not quite.

Too many times what the truth is isn't what people perceive as the truth. David Kinnamon says in his book, UnChristian:

Only one-third of young outsiders believe that Christians genuinely care about them (34 percent). And most Christians are oblivious to these perceptions—64 percent of Christians said they believe that outsiders would perceive their efforts as genuine.

While our outreach to those outside Christianity may be out of genuine concern for them, most often, those same people we are trying to reach don't feel that we are genuine. Just like with Nippon Ham, most people don't understand the truth behind the team's name, so to them, "Ham Fighters" becomes the truth.

With the Fighters though, the difference between reality and perception is the difference between a boring name and a funny name. When it comes to Christians' outreach toward outsiders, the difference is heaven and hell. Because, unfortunately, most people's biggest obstacle to Christianity is Christians. And when we appear ingenuine [sic - can I sic myself?], it make Christianity appear ungenuine [sic - apparently so, since I'm doing it].

How can we community with clarity genuine concern for outsiders to Christianity?

Subscribe in a reader