Showing posts from October, 2016

Milestones: #6 A Tallit, a Prayer & the Healing of My Soul

Collecting milestones of life/ministry.  These are "moments" when Jesus has changed/guided/shaped my life, which I am now using to build an "altar of remembrance" to Him.  Milestone #6 is an answered prayer that God used in a special way.

Sometime around the beginning of 2004, I was depressed.  It was worse than that.  I was sliding slowly into a deep depression.  There were a lot of factors that led to this, but ultimately it was burnout and misplaced priorities.  I was over 5 years into running as hard as I could as a youth pastor - I'm talking "no days off" type of running hard.  I lived, breathed, an even slept youth ministry.  If you were to cut me back then, I would have bled youth ministry. Profusely.

They say hindsight is 20/20; a friend recently said "hindsight is x-ray vision!" I came to the realization that my priorities were very out-of-whack in hindsight.  Had I been able to see it then, most likely the depression I was heading…

Milestones: #5 Opportunities

So be careful how you live.  Don't live like fools, but like those who are wise.  Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days. - Ephesians 5:15-16

The fifth milestone in this challenge is an opportunity from Christ that was life-changing.

Several years ago, Jesus began a new awakening within me. I began to see that healthy churches don't simply grow, they multiply.  I've learned that this involves intentionality and strategy, but it only truly happens as God adds members to His church.  I began to dream of what it would look like for the church I was serving in to follow God's leading into planting churches that plant churches who plant churches.  I began to dream of teamwork and a network, not for the sake of systems and programs, but to reach people with the love of Jesus Christ.

What would it look like to open every avenue possible to reach people who are far from God?  What would it look like to make disciples of Jesus instead of consumers of religion/doc…

Milestones: #4 Awake, O Sleeper!

Today, I continue to gather 7 specific life/ministry milestones, and stack them as an altar of worship and gratitude to God.

Milestone #4 is a scripture that has come alive in your heart to guide/shape your life.

Over the years, Jesus has brought many words of Scripture alive in my heart to guide and shape my life.  Just a few that come to mind... Psalm 30:11-12... Isaiah 43:19... 1 Peter 1:6-7... Matthew 7:12...

Just over a year ago, God very clearly called me, and my family, to relocate and plant a new church.  It's been a year of praying, pastoring, and preparing.  Earlier this year we began to pray specifically about what this new mission would be called.  As we prayed and brainstormed, I continued seeking God though His Word.  In studying the letter of Ephesians, in the New Testament, this passage jumped right out of the writer's charge to this ancient church to live as "Children of Light" in a dark world, relying upon God's Holy Spirit guidance into relatio…

Milestones: #3 SoFL Living

Let all that I am praise the LORD; may I never forget the good things He does for me.  - Psalm 103:2

In this challenge to set up personal milestones as an altar of worship & thankfulness, I come to the 3rd of 7: a blessing from Christ that was life changing.

Years ago, Shelly & I would visit my parents over the holidays.  My dad was given to watch the Weather Channel, especially in those winter months.  I would look at that map of the U.S., showing the blizzard threats, the freeze warnings, the some-what milder yet cold temps of the south... and then there was South Florida.  Most of the country ranged from 0-45 degrees, but South Florida registered temperatures in the 80s!  And sunshine!

I remember clearly thinking (and praying), "God, why can't I live there???"

To be completely honest, I detest Winter.  I don't even really like Fall.  Every year I attempt to keep these feelings to myself as long as possible, as I have come to realize that its pretty frustra…