Friday, September 30, 2005

For Sale: Our house is on the real estate market as of today. Our house is listed HERE, for the curious folks who read my blog. I'm hoping they get the picture up later this morning.

Cat: I had to send my dog home with my mom because there would be no place to keep him when people come see the house and some people are afraid of dogs that might be potential buyers. So George made the move to VA before us, he's doing just fine. But the cat gets to stay because no one is afraid of cats. Well Maggie has taken to being friendly again now that she's not constantly being harrassed by the beast. It's sweet and all but again I'm reminded that cats only love you conditionally, you serve them. They've got the system figured out.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Formula: I reject formulas when it comes to spirituality or if you prefer "in our relationship with Christ." This week I was at my district prayer conference and there was a guest speaker that spoke on prayer. He did not give us a formula on how to pray but he did give us a formula in regards to the amount of prayer and the "quality" of those prayers. Meaning not to pray for things in passing and expect God to work but to sit down at His feet and petition on other's behalf. He spoke truth. I wanted to reject what he was saying because he was very modern in his thinking and very formulaic but if I rejected his words I would have been rejecting truth...I know that.

These are not scriptures he pointed out but ones I have had to mull over: Matthew 6 when Christ talks about not babbling on like the pagans and not to pray in public just for show b/c when we do that we already have received our reward in full. Meaning that God rewards our prayers Luke 18 and the persistent widow who petitions the judge for justice and we are to petition our heavenly father for him to answer our prayers.

My thought meets modern was uncomfortable.

I guess when the day comes that I'm sitting in a room of people and we all agree on everything...I'll know for sure I've surround myself with ignorance.

Everything's ok: So what do you do when you have a parent that wants you to sit down with them and tell them everything is ok with their child when you know it's really not?

Nick I'm concerned about my son
yeah me too
*shocked look on face*
But there is hope

A classic tale of determining our current reality...and then acting in a manner that begins to change that current reality.

Fang: I've been away for a few days and I was on the phone with Heather on tuesday and she told me that Nathan has two teeth coming in on the top (his first top row teeth). I got home yesterday and picked up my boy and looked at his teeth. They aren't the front middle teeth like one would expect. They are what will one day be the the eye teeth. So for the time being Nathan has fangs.

Anybody remember the books Tales of the Fourth Grade Nothing and the sequel Super Fudge? The little brother, Fudge, in the story tried to fly off of the monkey bars when the older brother, Peter, was babysitting and Fudge hit the ground and knocked his front teeth out. They were his baby teeth but for the year or so Fudge had to live life with not front teeth. The older brother called Fudge "fang"...when his mother wasn't around.

I call Nathan "White Fang".

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

I'll serve one up fresh tomorrow...

Old Skool
Going Public

check back around lunch time

Saturday, September 24, 2005

Painting---- CHECK

Just a few more things to do, little ones, and I'm all finished. It's been a good run and I've done good work and gotten a TON done and boy am I tired.

This week I'm off at our District and Prayer Conference and then Friday the house goes on the market.

Catalyst: I registered for the Catalyst Conference. I'm looking forward to Don Miller (of course) and Andy Stanley the most but I know some of the other guys will win a fan in me after I hear them speak. We'll leave out on Monday the 3rd and spend a few days with Heather's aunts. I'll attend the labs on Wednesday and then the conference on thursday and friday. While I'm doing that Heather will show off The Boy to her family.

Few More: A few more additions to the rap sheet.
Had glass replaced in the sliding glass door
Painted hall ways and stair wells (need to finish this today)

Home Depot: I had a comment in my other post about it now being called THE Home Depot. I'm not sure if the name ever changed or not but I don't remember it being called THE Home Depot in the past. It was merely Home Depot. I guess it's a "hype" factor. Just like I'm not "Thinking Padre" I'm "THE Thinking Padre".

All gripe All hype-THE Thinking Padre

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Doing the Bull Dance feeling the flow working it working it

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Dump: took my annual trip to the dump. What fun! I dumped 140 pounds of stuff. Mainly a couch and some vinyl flooring I had left over.

Realtor: We talked to the realtor today and signed the papers to put our house on the market next friday. I'm praying for a nice quick sale at the price we're asking. The house work is going well and it's looking great so I don't predict a problem selling the house.

Monday, September 19, 2005

Machine: The verdict is in...I am a machine. In the past two weeks I have been working around the house. Let's see the rap sheet.

Removed shutters, cleaned shutters, painted shutters...Pressure washed house, replaced shutters and painted trim.

Stained deck.

Painted front door to match shutters.

Installed pergo floor in my entry way. (Thanks to my father-in-law for the help...well really I helped him)

Painted bathroom.

Fixed water damage around bathtub.

Laid new vinyl flooring.

Accidentally ripped out toilet...w/out unbolting it thus destroying.

Installed new toilet...not in the plan but was an easy install but require an extra 2 trips to Home Depot.

so tonight I need to paint the 1/4 so I can caulk around the tub and put the 1/4 round back...voila...bathroom finished.

I am the machine.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Commentary: I am finding that when you are leaving a current ministry position people like to ask questions. Which is fine. What really causes people to ask questions is when your current ministry is going just fine, there is no internal conflict, there is no pushing, shoving or running me out the door. I am leaving on my own free will and people have a hard time understanding that.

Where are you moving? Suffolk, VA

Are you going to be a sr. pastor or a youth pastor? Neither, I’m going to be a church planter-I’m going to start a church.

How many people are in the church? None

*confused look*

Well I guess this happens every few years either the church or the denomination moves people to new ministries. No one forced this on us, it is merely what we know God is calling us to do.

*doubtful look*

So when will you buy a building? Years down the road

What will you do till then? Good question, we’ll be developing a core group, starting with people we meet a few from the Portsmouth church then we’ll develop a bible study from there.

That’s it? Yep that’s it *confused look on my face*

Passion: So I am finally moving towards pursuing this new passion in my life. When people ask me why it’s actually very easy to answer. 85% of churches in America are plateaued or declining (Gene Wood) – The church in North America is on life support, it is living off of the work, money and energy of previous generations (Reggie McNeal). I know those not just as random facts to validate my passion but as truth, all I need to do.

Born-Agains by Generation-
Busters (1965-1976) 15 percent claim to be born again
Bridgers (1976-1994) 4 percent claim to be born again

New churches are best suited to reach new generations…and that’s what I want to do…that what I’m called to do.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Just Post It: Well here it is...I'll give commentary tomorrow.
September 13, 2005

Dear Governing Board,

After much prayer and consideration I have discerned the call to resign as the youth pastor of Emmanuel Alliance Church (effective November 23, 2005) to begin a new ministry in church planting.

I would like to thank you for the opportunity to serve the youth and congregation of Emmanuel Alliance Church the past three and a half years. I am confident that I will take the experience I have gained here and continue to advance the kingdom of God. I will always hold a fond place in my heart for Emmanuel Alliance Church and the relationships we have shared.

The students have taught me how to love and how to lead. They have challenged me, encouraged me and made me laugh. We have made memories we cannot forget, I will miss them. I will miss you.

Heather and I ask you for your prayers and support for our family during this time of transition to Suffolk, VA. The next step in our lives is to move to Suffolk and to begin a church plant with the Mid-Atlantic District of the Christian and Missionary Alliance. We take our experience and the knowledge we have gained here with us to Suffolk and once again thank you for the friendship and love we have enjoyed here.

Our prayers will be with you as you engage the future and as we work together for the same purpose of being and making disciples of Christ.


Rev. Nick

Mullet Sighting: This one is a rarity. Found on a older woman, with white hair next to a girl that has "juicy" on her butt. That's another post...enjoy the mullet.

A little girl bursts into the Bagel shop where I'm reading followed by her mid-50's grandmother. The little girl doesn't say a word but the patter of her feet is so random and inconsistent you can't help but notice her. She's hopping, skipping, dragging her feet and a combination of all. It made me smile.

From about 12 feet away the person behind the counter says "Good Morning"

Grandma says "Morning, Cup of Coffee please...laaarrrrge!"

I hear that!

Note to Self: Heard from Sermon from from the Summer 2005 (Money Sunday).

Mars Hill Budget:
25% of monies received is given away
75%--21% goes toward operating--54% Staff

The 14 biggest churches in Western Michigan were studied:
72:1 Staff to Attendee ratio (average)
179:1 Staff to Attendee ratio (Mars Hill)

$1579 given per year per person (average)
$546 given per year per person (Mars Hill)

Rob Bell addressed the problem...from the pulpit.

Monday, September 12, 2005

Mexican Jumping Bean: So my boy likes to jump. Really it's quite amusing but sometimes he just likes to jump. It can go on for a good hour, just jumping in his "Jump-a-Roo".

Brain: So on Thursday September 1 I went on vacation. It is now September 12 and while my body returned from vacation just fine my brain must still be on vacation. I actually don't know where it is. I might have left it somewhere on my trip...It's getting to where I might need to go look for it.

I promise invigorating and exciting posts in the near future. Trust me.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Nathan did a little too much drinking while on vacation. How better to start a series of pictures than with my boy?

Sometimes you just gotta the middle of the your underwear...without a front of dozens of people...sometimes

A church on 5th

I've been doing work around the house for the past three day so I don't really have much to say. How bout some pictures from my trip?

This is a house that we passed while tromping around New York City.

A shot from Central Park

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Wedding: I knew when the experience happened that I would want to write about it. I also knew that I would never be able to put words to such a divine experience. I also knew that I would still try. So here we go. I was in a wedding this past weekend for my friend who I have known since the first day of college. We have a great friendship and even though we live several states and a couple hundred miles away we still maintain a close and growing closer friendship.

I was serving as a groomsman and during the ceremony I began to feel...very...loved. Is the best way I know to experience it. I saw my friend getting married and his soon to be bride. I looked at them both- both very imperfect people, both screw ups, mess ups, can't get it right, just like everyone else humans. I saw their imperfection but I felt something much different. I felt something higher than humans are capable of, higher than can be achieved through effor.

Aside from my own wedding I have never even teared up at a wedding. I'm just not like that. But as my other friend also in the wedding party stood admiring his friend getting married I saw a tear come to his eye, he glanced at me and we both felt the feeling.

I think it was the idea of unconditional love, the feeling that although we screw up so much Christ loves us unconditionally. Anthony and I talked about it later. He called it grace, I couldn't argue.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Out: We're heading to my friend's wedding tomorrow morning. We'll spend friday and saturday in Walton, NY for the Blew's wedding and then head to Nyack for Sunday and Monday nights spending some time visiting NYC. I'm looking forward to it and am going to leave my computer at home so as not to run the temptation of being distracted by email or blogging or anything else that I do on this thing.

Padre OUT!

Fathers: I’ve been thinking much about father’s lately. Not particularly other’s fathers or even my own father but rather the role of “father” in the role of a pastor/youth pastor. What has stirred this is the overwhelming evidence and affect on a person by their father. Another unfortunate piece of information is that this effect is negative is most cases.

With the females in my group I can tell that they want to be told they are beautiful, they are worth fighting for and they are valuable to others. John Eldridge speaks of this wonderfully in his book Wild at Heart and a little booklet derived from Wild at Heart…can’t think of the name. But he’s not just talking hypothetical he is for real.

With the males in my group they want to know they are tough, manly, and capable of being a man.

For the past two years or so I have recognized this as one of my main responsibilities as their youth pastor. It’s not what I had in mind when I took this job but it has been one that has been a pleasure to fill. The ability to fill this role comes with a price because when you assume a father-like role all the implications come with it. You can’t be the king to sweep in and take care of the peasants, you can’t be the rich step-father using your emotional “money” to make it all better. Every word, every action towards that student is important and they feel it directly to their heart. So with that in mind you can see the things that might get difficult. What do you do when your students really disappoint you? What do you do when they are being stupid? What do you do when they need to be correct with stronger discipline?

Well the answer is you act with the love of our Father, with grace but often also a stern hand. It’s this paradox that can make it so difficult but really it should be no surprise that we are a father to man because we are about the Lord’s work a ministry of his, his priest. He is our father and others need to see the Father’s love.

Super Power: If I were a prophet of the Lord I think I would want my super power to be super fast running 1 Kings 18:45-46

Question: Did his servant also have super fast running? 1 Kings 19:3