September 29, 2009

Tough Rhymes, but true...



Now some of you may be offended by the use of war in this song. I understand that, but there are so many times that we walk in our Christian lives like we are powerless to sin, powerless to what life hits us with, powerless to what others say and do to us. We live our lives as a reaction and never take proactive steps in our faith. But this video reminds me that many times God is saying, "STOP IT!". If GOD is who He says He is then we have the power in Christ that is in us, why are we letting life happen to us? I'm just sayin... ;)

September 28, 2009

Monday Morning Musings- 09/28

My Sunday Night Recap is now called "Monday Morning Musings". I decided to do this because 1. I like getting a day to think about all the things that happened and B. I spend Sunday nights playing Mr. Mom because Kim works late, so I figure what's one day?

1. People coming into a relationship with Christ for the first time Sunday at Grace = 31! How flippin cool is that? 4 of them were in the middle school service and that is the greatest thing ever! Heaven is rockin' with joy that you are now part of the party!

2. Our small groups went really great and we are getting more students involved for our second week of small groups! Make sure you are there!

3. This week is our third week in our "Back to the Start" series. We talked about building relationships and how that is important for us as followers of Jesus. We build relationships at GraceSTUDENTS via our small group ministry. Which is a great place for students to get to know one another in a deeper level!

4. YOU! I love that you guys have been outside of the walls being the church to your schools and your circles of influence. I am so glad that you have been committed to helping other people take their next step toward Christ!

September 24, 2009

Jump In! The water is great...

I love middle school ministry! At times is is very similar to juggling chainsaws or swimming in a tankful of sharks. But I can't help it. I am addicted.

I think that student ministry is one of the most rewarding pursuits you can ever get into at your church. Why? Because at this age students are asking the hard questions about life, faith and what their place is in this world.

 See as a teenager this stuff is right in their face. They are forced to walk in a school with all different types of students with all different types of ideas. They are trying to understand themselves, understand the constant change and information overload in the world. But, God is the God of this world as well. God doesn't see a teenager and think, "I can't wait to use them when they are grown up and more mature." God wants to use them NOW. But how can they know that if adults are not telling them that? How will they grow if no one volunteers to help them navigate this life?

So I invite you to jump into the shark tank. Yes. That is what it is. Yes you might get bitten. Student ministry is not for the faint of heart, but it is worth every scar I have. If God is stirring your heart, then apply at your local student ministry today!

September 23, 2009

What you say is important...

Have you ever said something dumb that you just wanted to take back? I know I have. It's like you say what first comes to your mind before thinking what your words might do. Many times we can get away with a flippant word or a harsh retort.

But there are some instances where there really is no way to take back what you said...

The damage is done, the missiles you sent out to destroy their target did their work and now the other person is left reeling from the impact.

James says, "If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless." Yiiiikes. I wish James would mind his own business. He takes the first few chapters of his book and makes it clear how a follower of the Name must live.

Im not saying I have this down. But maybe we should take a quick three count before we say that thing that is intended to hurt. Or before we say that thing about someone that we know might not be 100% true.

Your words are one thing that you can control (unless you might have Turret's) if you are a Jesus follower. It is the one thing we are allowed that can directly impact someone for the better OR worse. Think about that the next time you are in a conversation today. Your words do matter...

last time you got kicked for Jesus?

"The apostles left the Sanhedrin, rejoicing because they had been counted worthy of suffering disgrace for the Name." Acts 5:41

It's been a while since the last time I got kicked in the shins for the cause of Christ, but what I do know is that at one point or another it happens to all of us. When that time comes, will we be willing to rejoice in the Name? Especially if that Name will be the cause of personal suffering?

The disciples did. They carry the same message we do. Just think about it...

September 20, 2009

Sunday Night Re-Cap 9/20

Great Sunday everyone!

1. We had another good Sunday, with new faces and new leaders!

2. We covered the second week in our "Back to the Start" series, in which we went over what it means to worship God! We have been traveling through the book of Acts, which has also been quite cool.

3. We have a few students already excited about Baptism, which is coming up Oct 18th. Please let me know if you are interested!!!

4. Small groups are up and running this week please check here for details!

5. Last but, definitely not least, @mcadkins brought a great message in the main service series, "Making Love Last!" If you havent heard the podcast yet, go check it out! Also we should have video up on the web by Tuesday AM!

September 17, 2009

Friday Funny: Just Plain Weird

This amazing photo is brought to you by my friends at awkward family photos. I was thinking of what to write about this picture when I realized this picture actually says volumes without a caption. 

So thanks weird dad for coming up with this brilliant idea for a photo. It has the unique ability of making me laugh and creeping me out at the same time. Happy Friday everyone!

September 16, 2009

Fantastic!

We had a great small group kickoff party last night! If you missed it, you are just gonna have to make the next one! ;) Anyways just wanted to lay down the times of the Middle School small groups for you so you can see what dates and times* they are going down.

Monday Night (7th/8th Boys) @ 6:30-8:00

Brent Upham/Dan Hoyle

Tuesday Night (Girls) @ 6:30-8:00

Kim Tumlinson/Sheryl Parker

Wednesday Night (6th Boys) @ 5:00-6:30

David Touchton/Norm Tumlinson

Thursday nights (Girls) @ 6:30-8:00

Julie Sienko/Ginger Wright

*once you pick a night you need to commit to that night for the rest of the semester. no exceptions

**for safety purposes locations are not listed on this blog. For specific locations please email students@gogracefellowship.com

Social Media... It's a big deal.

September 15, 2009

What determines your direction, is the object of your affection

"Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe" John 20:27

Times are tough. Money is tight. Lately life has just been tough. I know that you have been there. I dont know your circumstances, but I know we have all been swallowed up by disdain at one point or another.

But here is the deal. God is not asking you to pull up your bootstraps. God is not asking you to make your own way. God is simply asking you to "believe". Now Im not talking believe like the Shamu show at Sea World, or to believe dreams do come true.

God is asking you to believe in the One He sent. What determines your direction is the object of your affection. Is God not who He says He is? Did Jesus not escape death and rise again to change the fabric of who we are? As I write this I think about my circumstances. Things are hard. We are sometimes living paycheck to paycheck. I wrestle with life and wrestle with how to lead students to Jesus.

But when Jesus becomes the only object of my affection, everything else becomes strangely small. When I look into the blazing eyes of Jesus I become less and He becomes King. Jesus never changes. And He really can make a way.

Test your affection today. To whom or what is your heart bound to?

September 14, 2009

www.gogracestudents.com

Check out the new website!!!  www.gogracestudents.com !



September 13, 2009

Sunday Night Re-Cap 9-13

BOOOYAH! What a great fall kickoff sunday! I am just so thankful to God for all the great things that happened. YOU were a big part of that as well. It was just a great sunday from top to bottom.

1. We had a record number of students this week, we cleared over 60. Wow!

2. Middle School rocked it with 47 students!!! You guys did such a great job, and it was seriously fun wasn't it? I cannot wait to see what God is going to do through YOU the rest of this semester and year!

3. We started a great new series called "BACK TO THE START" which we are going to go through the book of Acts as well as talk about what it means to be a part of GraceSTUDENTS!

4. We are starting Middle School Small groups THIS WEEK! Our small group party is going to be this TUESDAY @ 6:30!! Get excited, they are going to be off the hizzie! If you need info on the party email GraceSTUDENTS--> students@gogracefellowship.com!

5. I just love our parents and leaders as they are making this possible by their support, volunteering and constant partnership!!! Thanks to you all as well.

September 10, 2009

One of my favorites...

Robert Frost (1874–1963). Mountain Interval. 1920.
1.The Road Not Taken

TWO roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth; 5
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same, 10
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back. 15
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference. 20

September 9, 2009

cool is relative

I saw a funny ezine article that talked about growing up in the 90's. I laughed at the things that it talked about as I raced down memory lane for fifteen minutes or so. One of the funniest things in the article was how we thought MC Hammer and Vanilla Ice (picture to the right for those born after 1992) were actually cool.

I don't care who you are, at least 95% of teenagers jammed "Ice Ice Baby" when it came out. C'mon, don't kid yourself, (if you are my age) you liked it, even if it was just a little. Some kids in my school even shaved slits in their eyebrows because the "VIP" did it. I can't believe I did... err... I mean other kids did that.

I use this picture on the right because we actually thought Vanilla looked cool in this outfit in the early 90's. I mean it was actually okay to wear that (horrendous) outfit... We were pretty dumb. But we were teenagers... I guess I write this because I sometimes I think about how we give teenagers such a hard time about the things that they do, when I was just as much a lemming back in the day. So take that for what it's worth, and give a teenager a break today.

 "Word to your mother..."

September 8, 2009

Fall Kickoff--- Sept 13th!

It's that time of year again! That's right, not only is football kicking off, but @Gracefellowship we have our Fall kickoff!

Last year was off the chain, so you know we are going to bring it this year! Grace Students is going to have Middle School @ 10:30 and High School @ 11:45! We have a few surprises planned for those that show up this Sunday. So you know its's a great day to bring a new friend!!!

So get there early and come excited because its gonna be straight ballin' cousin!!! Can't wait to see YOU there!!!

September 7, 2009

Sunday Night Re-Cap 9/6 (Labor day edition)

Wow. 

Sunday was so much fun, and Im pretty sure that it rocked too! 

1. We had a great ending to our "New Friend Request" series! Next week we start "Back to the Start" where we talk about the genesis of the church and about how we fit into the long line of God's work on earth!

2. I am beat, now I really can appreciate what @mcadkins goes thru ever Sunday!!! Geez!!! Thanks for all of your support.

3. Its labor day today so I am definitely taking a break! Much love to all my readers, go out and BBQ today!!! ;)

September 5, 2009

payers appreciated!

Teaching 3 services this sunday in @mcadkins stead!!! Pretty crazy huh? Lift me up in prayer. Thanks!

September 2, 2009

Middle School Small Groups

Attention Middle Schoolers! We are starting up small groups this fall and we are having a kickoff party Sept 15th @ 6:30 at the Howsare's residence in Maitland. If you need directions please email Grace Students at norm@gogracefellowship.com and we will get back with you!

video

"Bullet" by Mat Kearney

Sunday in the student ministries we listened to a song by Mat Kearney. I think you can read the lyrics on several levels, but we listened to it as a challenge--to see if we were really willing to give it all for Christ and for our friends (serving them) and take a "bullet" for them (dying to self//or maybe literally dying). Anyways, here's the words. You can listen to the track on iTunes.

Yesterday I was sitting recalling reminiscing
Trying to remember whenever there was nobody listening
Before the hugging and the kissing, the booing and the hissing
All I had was just a vision, all I had was my ambition
Your love without condition kept me swinging when I'm missing
My eyes upon the prize kept me striving for the mission

When I was down for the count, falling out of the commission
I can hear your voice now screaming out, 'son, listen'
Get on up, don't give up, though you struck opposition
Time to buck all that stuff, find out what's your condition
Like a pull in my soul, like keys in my ignition
Call you all my commission, my love and my vision and

[bridge]
It doesn't matter if they call me wrong
Doesn't matter if they steal my song
Doesn't matter if we're all alone
It doesn't matter at all

[chorus]
'Cause I would take a bullet for you
I would take a bullet for you
I would cross any line, I'd swim across the sea
I would take a bullet for you
I would take a bullet for you
I would lost it all, take my fall
To show you it's for real

Remember when we used to flow together back in the park
You would slang guitar licks under stars in the dark
You'd say let's grow together as this world falls aprat
I was holding on to hope but hardly holding a spark

All the rhymes that I wrote you'd call dope for the start
I'd be like a pure note, like a quote on the mark
You'ld go to every show and promote from the start
From the beginning we've been building much more than this art

Remember bearing scars in your car to impart your heart
You cared enough to call my bluff through the junk from the start
That's why you're holding onto half of my heart
You've been there through the times, through the nights that were dark and

[bridge]

[chorus]

September 1, 2009

water basin...

This past Sunday we talked about how the best friendships are based on giving not just getting. I have really been chewing on that for a while last week and it spilled over into this week. I have really been thinking about my friendships and how (or if) I really serve them like I challenged the students to serve their friends this week.

I used the example of Jesus washing his disciples feet and that image is still in my head. Do I serve recklessly? I have to pause a moment and think on that... I hope you do to...