New Blogging Address

Hey All! I just wanted to let you know that I have pretty much abandoned this blog. Nothing against this blog but I was recently invited to become a contributing blogger at www.groansfromwithin.com, to which, I accepted. So please head on over to Groans From Within and enjoy the rambling of myself and 2 good friends who are seeking to create great conversation about the living and active Kingdom of God. I look forward to reading your thoughts!




Would You?

This week I have only a question for those of you that read my blog and I'm really hoping for some comments.

If Heaven and Hell failed to exist, would you follow the ways of Jesus?


People; The Objects

I was watching a short video podcast today from one of my most admired ministries, XXXChurch. I've greatly admired the team at XXXChurch for their willingness to go into tough places to bring a message of love to those who desperately need it or who have never actually felt real love, but the "love" that comes from porn and the porn industry. This particular podcast had a short clip of some of the XXXChurch crew members attempting to have a conversation with a few very loud, obnoxious Christians that stood across the road of the Exotica Miami Convention with banners held high portraying messages directed at the convention goers that featured words like "sin", "anger" and "hate". The XXXChurch volunteers attempted to help the banner people understand that the message they were passing along was not the message of Jesus, because in fact each person is valued and loved by God. There was quite at argument that ensued and if you'd like to see it you can click here (about 3min in)

Why do we as Jesus followers think that porn should not exist? There are multiple reasons but I believe the most important reason is this: porn only degrades people, especially women, it ultimately plays a part in removing humanity and replacing it with objectivity. I believe that part of fighting the good fight (1 Tim 1:18, 6:12 2 Tim 4:7) is to fight for humanity to exist or to be restored, not to degrade it.

What I don't think the banner people realize is they are a lot more like the porn producers, actors and consumers they were calling out than they are like those that choose to follow Jesus. I couldn't help but notice that the banner people looked at the people across the street as sinners, evil doers and whores, of which we could say about any of us, but they didn't see the people across the street for what they truly were...humans...damaged, broken, fallen, humans. As they were yelling and screaming I began to tear up a bit, only because if they were portraying the true God, they might as well have been yelling and screaming at me-for I have sinned, I am broken, I have done evil, I am damaged, I am fallen and if these are the labels I must carry around, the kind of labels that show up in a room 5 minutes before I do, I have no hope because now I am not a person who carries baggage, I am the baggage, and if this is true, there is no hope.

There is a quote from Shane Claiborne that I talk about frequently that I believe hits home in this situation, a conversation he had with a friend where his friend claimed that Jesus never spoke to a prostitute. Shane began to fire back with counter remarks until his friend stopped him and finished. His friend finished his thought: "Jesus never talked with a prostitute because He never saw a prostitute...He saw a person that He was madly in love with".

Ultimately; stories about banner people sadden me, but I fear this problem is much closer to home than we want to realize. Part of working inside a church is many conversations, philosophies, and creation of evangelism. Evangelism is a great thing, but all too often our language can turn to things like "we evangelized them" or "we need to grow through evangelism". It's not the words that end up being the problem, it's where the words come from. All too often we has pastors and church people can stop seeing actual people with issues, problems, joys and sorrows-but soon we begin to implement the same objectivity thinking as the banner people and porn producers, the kind of thinking where people are no longer humans, they are objects that make up our large events, purposes and even our egos.

I'm sad to say it, but I am guilty of this type of thinking. There have been times where I have given in to objectivity thinking. In my darkest times, my entire goal is to pack out the room with lots of kids and look like a hero to the church because "there are so many kids here!" When this type of thinking ensues, it doesn't matter where these kids come from or what they go home to, the only thing that matters is me because, I don't have to care for objects; right?

May all of us see humans that God is madly in love with. May we all see humans that we are madly in love with. May we realize that Jesus died for humanity, and not just the people, but the concept as well. May we be carriers and removers of others baggage. May we be part of the restoration and the gift of true, authentic, Humanity.


Pomo Camp-Ground

This pic was posted on twitter by my good friend Tim Haydock, and I thought I would share it with ya'll. To all my friends living within this new culture, shall we create an annual retreat here? An annual time of theological and philosophical wrestling? This could be epic.


One of my great influencers; Bill Walsh

Recently, a friend of mine had to ask 10 different people to comment on who they considered great and why. She chose to involve me in this project and below is my response.

"One person that I think is really great is Bill Walsh. Walsh coached the San Francisco 49ers from 1979 to 1988. During that time he won 3 super bowls, which was a great achievement in itself in such a short time. However, this is not why I truly admire about him.

During his time as the head coach of the 49ers, as well as his coaching time at Stanford, Walsh was able to develop 6 other coaches that went on to become great head coaches in the NFL. These 6 coaches then developed others because of the influence of Walsh, all in all, the total amount of head coaches that can thank Walsh for playing a serious role in their leadership is 31. (and there are only 32 teams in the NFL)

The other reason i think he's great is that he invented what we call the "West Coast Offense". There are only a few great minds that have shaped current football strategies and he is one of them. He looked at the current offenses in place and decided they needed to be re-invented so he did, which is why he was able to earn so many wins and championships. I truly admire anybody that can re-write the way things are done in any industry or ministry.

In addition to these things he genuinely cared about his fellow players and coaches. He considered it a great honor to be able to work with everyone he did. For Walsh, this was the most valuable part of coaching. This type of attitude from a coach is rare today and when a coach is encountered with a similar attitude as Walsh, the time with that coach is to be admired and copied.

As a ministry leader, i hope to be able to re-think ministry strategies and recycled ideas and turn them into what can truly achieve the mission of God. I also hope that one day there will be many other leaders in ministry that I was able to develop so that they may continue to legacy of pushing forth the great mission of God."

As leaders in ministry, it is important that we continue to learn from anybody and everybody that has gone before us so that we may grow in our ability to be the best leaders we can be, wherever God has placed us.

"Leadership is a stewardship. It is temporary. And you're accountable" -Andy Stanley

If you had to name 1 leader that you greatly admire and have learned a lot from, who would they be?



Check out this video by Matt Chandler on why we see people leaving faith and church. Thought provoking.