Tuesday, September 20, 2005


God is so good!! God has been so good to the church at Southwest. He has blessed us, I think he has disciplined us and pruned us, and I believe all that he is doing, will bring him glory. Our body has been so gracious to me after our announcement a couple of Sundays ago. Our senior adult group was awesome to me. Thank you God for affirming me through your Son’s bride. It was just awesome…one sweet little lady (I think it was just one) told our elders that they finally made a good decision!! I think that was supposed to be a compliment to our elders. Anyway…I am looking forward to how God is going to use me in this ministry to this very special segment of our body and to what he will teach me and my family while we serve him and the body in this way.

One of the things that struck me the most as I was leaving the church building Sunday morning on my way to Bob and Caron’s house was how loved and needed I felt. I KNEW I was loved by the church last Sunday…there was no doubt in my mind (well, maybe with a few but I guess that is always the case)…what a GREAT feeling…knowing that you are loved! But, at the very same time, I felt needed by our church body…I knew that I was a very important part of what God is going to do at Southwest. Not that God can’t do it without me…even better…God has chosen to use me…his servant…his friend (John 15:15)…wow I am loved and being used by God (my friend) to glorify him by serving…and loving back…the very people who love me!!! THIS IS AWESOME!! So, I began to pray and ask God to bless our church in a way that every person….EVERY PERSON…who calls Southwest home would leave every gathering with no doubt in their mind that they are unconditionally loved…AND…know that they are needed by their Father in heaven…that they are useful…that God has a special place for them to bring Himself glory. I want that for me…for Christy, for my kids, for my parents in their church, for EVERYONE who calls themselves followers of Christ. God, will we ever see this. Will you bless Your church with this and then accept our worship to you…not to each other for what WE have done but to YOU for who you are and what you have done. Until you have done this will you never let me forget the way I feel now…never let me forget that I am chosen and loved…even when I am being persecuted, I will rejoice to be persecuted for you. Thank you Father!!

Then what can I say about our “Town Hall Meeting”….it wasn’t perfect…but it was so much better than I thought it could have been. Jerry and the rest of the elders did a great job…and the best part of the night was when our elders were blessed with a standing ovation by the members of our church. I watched as many of our elders just cried…I think they were very humbled by how God is using them. I know that many of them feel inadequate to do what they are doing. I say…we are ALL inadequate to do what we are doing!! Praise God!! Where I am week…Yahweh is strong. Father, thank you for showing up again. Thank you for using our shepherds to speak truth. Thank you for blessing them and for the men and women who showed their love to them. Bless them with more conversations with sheep about You and Your business. Take away anything that distracts them from Your vision for the church.

Now a little rant….I watched the Cowboys last night…bad enough that they lost but I’m a little put out with the whole Katrina telethon thing. Not so much that they have MULTIMILLIONAIRES on the phones asking us for money…not so much that they have waited about 3 weeks too long to start raising money because it happened to fit with the NFL schedule…here is what really tweaks me. The NFL is patting itself on the back for flying in hundreds of displaced Saints fans to NYC for the game last night. I just think that is ridiculous. There are people who are hungry, homeless, still stranded, dead still being found, families still lost from each other…it is going to take billions to rebuild homes of victims…and the NFL is spending money on bringing people to a stinking football game. Don’t get me wrong…I LOVE FOOTBALL…but that seems like our priorities are way out of wack. I also know that our priorities have been out of wack for a while regarding our sporting events but this one really tweaked me! That and the report that I heard that Bourbon St. business owners are trying to get money given to them first so they can have things going for Marde Gras. YEAH….that’s what we need…forget the hungry dieing people…let’s get the floats going and the bead making machines fired up…let’s spend some money shipping in liquor by the truckload…who needs potable water and electricity…what New Orleans need is a good football game and a slammin party!!! God….help us!! Heal our land!

Sorry about the rant.

One final thing….what do I do when my kids act like me and it frustrates the living hookie out of me??? Oh, I love my kids. Father, thank you for teaching me about You by the way I deal with my kids. Thank you for continuing to show me mercy…I want to be as merciful as you. I love you God.

Your Son,


Sunday, September 11, 2005

Today is a day that I have been both dreading and looking forward to for a while now.

Let’s start with the dreading!

I hope that 9/11 doesn’t end up being an appropriate day for our “Town Hall Meeting”. I hope that we are not expecting a nice peaceful evening and we are going to end up at the end of the day looking around at the rubble of a church. I say that somewhat joking but even as I say it, I get this churning inside my stomach. It just bothers me on a day like today that we (this group of people who follow Christ together and call ourselves the Southwest Church of Christ)…well, first that we would have the audacity to call ourselves “of Christ” and then proceed by acting nothing like Him. Father, no matter what happens today, let me act like Christ. And then that this evening, as we sit in the same room that we worship in every Sunday, are we being a bride for our Savior that would be something He is attracted to? I pray that we will be. I have full confidence in our Shepherds. I know that they will handle all of this with the attitude of Christ. And even in their suffering, the will rejoice that that can suffer for the cause of Christ. Father, protect us from the evil one today. Protect us that the father of lies can not twist our words to be hurtful or even confusing. Let all that we speak be clear and for your glory. Bless us that EVERYTHING we do today be for your glory. Please Father, save us from our own self-centeredness. Save us from the evil that grips Your church. Have mercy on us.

Now for the looking forward to…..

By the way, I am also looking forward to tonight’s town hall meeting to the extent it will allow me to be Christ in circumstances that are hard. Thank you Father for this opportunity. But also I am looking forward to the “big announcement” today. Today we announce that I will be taking over our ministry to the “Senior Adult” segment of our body. I haven’t written in a while because this has been so much in my heart and on my mind and I knew I couldn’t risk writing about it here (not because I’m hiding anything but because sharing it too early could have been hurtful). I am both excited and SCARED TO DEATH about this ministry!! On one hand, I know that I have been uniquely prepared for this ministry. I know that God has called me to this ministry (more on that another day) . I know that His will will be done…no matter what…He is the Sovereign God. I know that I love the people I will be ministering to. I know that if I am true that last statement, they will know that I love them by my actions, not just my words. On the other hand…wait, there is no other hand….I know that even in my “scared to death” God is working for my good and for the good of the kingdom (which happens to include this body known as Southwest Church of Christ). So, yes, I am a little fearful…and yes, I have FULL CONFIDENCE that God will win!!!! WOOHOO! I love being able to say that.

Saying that about the ministry change…sure helps me in looking forward now to the town hall meeting.


I now look forward to everything you will bring today. I look forward to our worship this morning, I look forward to the sermon…I look forward to my prayer time this morning…I look forward to the town hall meeting, I look forward to cookies and punch afterwards…I look forward to the announcement and all the ministry that follows it. I look forward to seeing my kids run down the isle and hugging my leg like they haven’t seen me in weeks. I look forward to whatever comes because I KNOW MY REDEEMER LIVES AND I KNOW THROUGH YOU WE HAVE ALREADY WON!!!! Thank you Father for that promise!! Thank you for the confidence I get in you. Don’t just protect us from the evil one…let us see Your victories over him. I love you Lord!!

Your son,


Blessed assurance, Jesus is mine!

O what a foretaste of glory divine!

Heir of salvation, purchase of God,

Born of His Spirit, washed in His blood.

This is my story, this is my song,

Praising my Savior all the day long;

This is my story, this is my song,

Praising my Savior all the day long.

By the way…my Red Raiders (boy were they red last night) won last night. I know it was just FIU…but let’s hope this score is a sign of things to come…

wreckem Tech!