Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Standing By in Anticipation

I'm really looking forward to this weekend. Our teaching team at Newbreak is going to talk about miracles. We'll be in a really cool passage that anticipates what God can do in our lives.

Tomorrow night I get to speak at God's Extended Hand to the Homeless, and Friday night at the San Diego Rescue Mission. As I anticipate all the people there in need of God's life-changing power, I can't help but think...how many miracle stories are going to be written in the lives of those at GEH, the SDRM, and Newbreak this weekend?

Standing by in anticipation...

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Forward Thinking

Wednesdays are always full of forward thinking. On any given Wednesday, I've got at least 3 different sermons to go through. Our team works on the message for this weekend, creates an outline for a message 6 to 8 weeks away, and plans big ideas for messages 14 weeks out and further.

This afternoon was quite fascinating. Not only did we do the above mentioned things, but we planned out our sermon series ideas from September 2012 through August 2013! We all brought in ideas for different series' and planned out the calendar. It was an amazing process!

I have to say...it is such a privilege serving as a pastor at Newbreak Church. Our staff is full of some of the most talented, dedicated, and fun people around! Pastor Mike told me before I started working at Newbreak that we'd have a blast working together for the Kingdom of God. He wasn't kidding! I'm so blessed to be part of such a great staff!

So as my head is spinning with more sermon series ideas than my little brain can hold, I'm going to bed knowing that the rest of 2012 and 2013 are going to be amazing times in the life of our church! We will continue to shake the planet with God's love! It's the kind of forward thinking that we could never pull off on our own, but we know we'll never wear out God's capacity to do great things! He'll supply whatever is needed...just like he always does!

Are you ready for a great planet shaking journey with God?

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Full Circle

Sorry for the week long break from blogging.

Yesterday was a great "full circle" day for me. I written a few times about my homeless friends who are no longer homeless. One of my favorite guys in the world, Michael, is doing great! He's been working for a special events business that specializes in hot dog, cotton candy, pop corn, funnel cake and other vending carts. They do lots of events around town and work and have been known to work the NASCAR circuit.

Michael worked for 30 years as an electrician, but dropped off the map of life for about 8 years. Well...he's back on the map now. He's the warehouse maintenance man and keeps all the cart in working order. He loves his job, and he loves the place where he lives! God has done a miracle in his life! The guy that owns the business is a real gift from God too!

Yesterday I called Michael up and asked him if he wanted to go to lunch. I was in the area and thought it would be fun to catch up. I picked him up and we went to Denny's...that's where he wanted to go. When the bill came, he picked up the check and said "I'm buying your lunch today! I've got a whole pocket full of money!" I can't tell you what a cool moment that was. Not because I got a free lunch, but because Michael was so proud to be able to buy it! He was so proud of the fact that he earned every dollar.

The process of watching Michael grow from where he was when I met him, to where he is now, has been a roller coaster. But as time has gone by, the good days now way outnumber the bad days for Michael. Almost every day is now amazingly good!

Don't ever give up on those you love! God is always working and it's worth the wait to see the miracle that will unfold!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

In the Presence of Greatness

Not always do you get the opportunity to be in the presence of greatness. Tonight, my good buddy Patrick invited me to a drum clinic with Bernard Purdie, a living legend known as "the world's most recorded drummer." He was Aretha Franklin's drummer for 25 years and played with James Brown, B.B. King, Steely Dan, and Joe Cocker...just to name a few. He and legendary harmonica player Rob Paparozzi...B.B. King, Bruce Springsteen, Cyndi Lauper, and Whitney Houston...put on quite a clinic.

Rob Paparozzi, Me, Bernard Purdie
Bernard was an amazing showman, super funny, and such a solid, grooving drummer. It was 2 1/2 hours of awesomeness if you were a musician!

Tonight was great, but it was nothing compared to this weekend, when you all will get a chance to get a glimpse of true greatness! No living legend could possibly compare to the one you could meet this weekend! This weekend is Easter and the living legend of all living legends will be at a church service waiting for you to be there. His name is Jesus!

I was super stoked my friend brought me to the drum clinic tonight. If he wouldn't have invited me, I would have missed it. The same thing goes for your friends this weekend. If you don't invite them to Easter services wherever you are, they will miss out on a life clinic beyond compare...an opportunity to experience the Savior of the world...an opportunity to maybe begin a relationship with Him...an opportunity for their life to finally make sense and have freedom, forgiveness, and purpose!

Invite your friends to be in the presence of greatness this weekend! Text them, email them, or call them right now. If you haven't been invited as you read this, then let me invite you to attend a church service wherever you are. If you are in San Diego, come to one of our 13 services at Newbreak Church!

Make it a priority to put yourself in the presence of greatness this weekend!


Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Sold...but here's the deal...

Today was a day of closure for Sheri and I. We both like closure! But getting closure on something doesn't always mean you get what you were praying for.

A few weeks ago, we got the wild idea to sell our condo. Our HOA fees were going up dramatically and we didn't really like it. So...we called up our good friend Danny Davis, our Realtor over the past 12 years. Danny had sold both our previous houses in 1 day for full value. He also got us into new houses for the best value. We thought...let's try this.

Well, sure to his epic form, Danny listed our house on a Tuesday, and we sold it the next day! Three for three!... Plus he totally got top dollar again! We thought we were on our way. We had decided to rent a place for a while until we could settle on a new one. We have always felt we'd eventually end up more North, closer to our Mira Mesa Newbreak campus.

So we found a rental, close to where my office is located. It was perfect! The landlord was awesome! The only thing left to do was to have our appraisal done. We did that and continued to pray...and wait...and pray more...and wait more. The deal made sense, but "short sales" in our condo complex were pulling the comps down. So we prayed with great faith for the deal to go through, then waited some more.

Today, we got the news that the appraisal came in too low to make a deal. There was a brief sadness, but that was quickly replaced by great peace. Sheri and I figured that if we had so many Godly people praying for this deal to happen and it still didn't, God must have something amazing for us in our future. We have no idea what it is, but we are confident He does!

When God gives His final answer, it may not be what we like, but ultimately this is about HIS plans and purposes, not ours! His plans are perfect, and though we don't understand them, they will all make sense some day. So...life goes on...but not in a mediocre kind of way. It's a thrilling way in which we will anticipate the great things God has in store for us in our future!

Tonight, we will rest well. Tomorrow we'll wake up the same way we did today...looking forward to an amazing Easter weekend!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Waiting

Tom Petty said it best..."The waiting is the hardest part."

It's the Passion week leading up to Easter. What were the disciples thinking that week after Jesus rode into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday? I can just imagine their anticipation that Jesus would become a great king like David. He would, but not in the way they thought. They had to wait and trust.

I can imagine when Jesus told his disciples that he must die and be raised from the dead on the third day, they were a little confused. When Friday came and he died, the wait till he rose on Sunday must have been full of all kinds of thoughts...some faith filled ones...some not so faith filled ones...but they waited and trusted.

It was on Sunday that their faith became sight. They SAW Jesus raised from the dead! Three days that seemed like forever became worth the wait when Jesus rose from the dead and PROVED he was the Son of God!

Our lives are similar to Jesus' disciples. Sometimes we have to wait and trust. We wait as we pray for family members to find a relationship with Jesus. We wait for that new job that takes forever to get. We wait for that new house that gets tied up in mortgage red tape. It seems like we're always waiting for something or someone!

But just because others are slow, it doesn't mean God is! He's always right on time! While the waiting IS the hardest part for us, God already has it all figured out. So pray, wait, and trust in Him.

What are you waiting for the Easter season?

Monday, April 2, 2012

Unexpected Blessing!

Last week when I was in Mexico, we were just finishing up stuccoing one of the houses we built during the week. As we were getting ready to dedicate the house to God and present the keys to the family, I walked around the corner and saw the coolest sight. There was a shadow of a cross on the house. I ran and got my camera and snapped this pick. It was such a great reminder of God's love for the family receiving this house...an unexpected blessing in my day.

If you look around, there are all kinds of blessings in our days. Take time to notice them...especially the unexpected ones!