Archive for June 2008

Just another Sunday   Leave a comment

Wow that has to be a record for me 243 miles to church! Well being on vacation here in South Carolina we are in range (well sort of!) of three of the amazing churches whose teaching we have been blessed with during One Prayer. The chance to visit one of them seemed too good to miss. Since all of them are the other side of the state from our vacation spot and knowing that Perry Noble was going to be preaching live at NewSpring(thank you Andy!) made this the logical choice ……….

So 6:30am we set out for the 11:00am service. We made it and as we arrive those who have been to the first service are leaving, necessitating a representative of the sheriff’s department positioned at the gate complete with flashing light! As we enter the parking lot, visitors are invited to put on their flashers and a small army of radio controlled attendants spring into action. We are directed to a spot and a smiling attendant is standing outside of the car to greet us. He hands us two vouchers for the full service coffee shop as a welcome gift.  He made it clear firstly they were very pleased to see us, enquiring where we came from and listening to the answer with interest. Then he pointed us to the doors explaining that should we need to use the rest room during the service we would need to return to a designated sitting area as to return to our seats would be too much of a disruption! As we entered the amazing building we were once again engaged by a smiling greeter who pointed out important locations, including “Awake,” (the coffee shop!) and of course….the bathrooms. Having made the necessary visits (to avoid future embarrassment!!) we joined one of the lines waiting to enter the auditorium. As we waited we observed the people around us, a good range of ages but predominantly young adults, smiling faces, with a sense of anticipation for what was to come. The doors opened to allow us in to a spectacular theatre style multi media auditorium and we soon sank into two  richly upholstered theater style seats…….

Ok that’s enough for today………. There’s much more to share including 32 baptisms and a great message from Perry Noble. But more about that later ….it’s time for today’s challenging question. Maggie and I missed the sense of family and community that is so important to us at New Life. Indeed at the end of the service the parking lot was empty within 20-30 minutes and we were one of very few standing talking with a staff member in the formerly packed foyer. So how do you maintain a strong sense of family and community as numbers grow?… (By the way I am not criticizing NewSpring or saying this dynamic was not part of their church life, I am simply posing a question that occurred to me during my short exposure to this amazing church where God is so clearly at work)

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Posted June 30, 2008 by jolm15 in Uncategorized

One Prayer for each day   Leave a comment

I am still amazed at all God did at New Life on Sunday! I feel so privileged to have covenanted with so many people to serve Him in Pacifica. The message from Jentezen Franklin we heard as part of One Prayer has left so many thoughts replaying in my mind. Here are a couple of quotes:

“When we meet Jesus we want Him to say Well done good and faithful servant …..not medium rare!!! We must make sure the fire is burning strong if we are to be well done”

“In the Old Testament God had a tabernacle for His people now he has a people for His tabernacle”

…….but One Prayer also has me thinking in a number of ways that relate to my day to day priorites and this morning I was wondering… since the Bible tells me that The Spirit is interceding for me (Romans 8 26-27) I wonder what God’s one prayer for me might be today. No not a vague one, someting more  specific… ‘ Jonathan if you only remember one thing I ask you to do today please……..

…….remember to say something encouraging to _______

……. make some time to spend with _______ and remind them how much I love them

…….. please make a start on _______ I said I would help but you have to start!

How about you………

I probably won’t be blogging for a few days ( Maggie and I are taking a few days vacation) but I look forward to continuing the conversation when I get back

Posted June 24, 2008 by jolm15 in Uncategorized

Join the Conversation   Leave a comment

There are some things you think you just won’t do and yes, you’ve guessed it, for me blogging was one of those! I mean let’s face it my typing is beyond bad. I have two entirely illiterate fingers and six more very unhelpful contributors …..  (if your counting and confused the other two are thumbs, even I know that, and they currently do not know the alphabet!). I can of course use spell check but my problem is that often it does not recognize the words that come out enough to give me reasonable alternatives. If it could speak, perish the thought, I think it would repeat ,”you have to be joking,” with monotonous regularity. I had read the occasional erudite offering of well-constructed theological thought from one person or another and drawn the conclusion that it was just not for me. You see, I have a confession to make I do not like to do things, at least in public, that I can’t convince myself  I can be good at . Yes I know that’s pride, why do you think I began the sentence with confess!
So what changed my mind ……… well maybe God suggested that a good dose of humiliation would be good (you know you really did not have to agree that fast!). … Actually I began to read a number of blogs more regularly from people who seem to me to be really good at it Tony MorganPerry Noble Craig Groeschel, Mark Batterson to name a few. I noticed that I was drawn in as I started to experience an entirely new form (for me) of thought provoking conversation. The sharing of quotes from books, questions one is asking or meditations on scripture. Casting these things before a wider audience seems to have great value. In 1998 a movie was made called  ” Living out Loud’ a title stolen I believe from Emile Zola. I have no idea of the plot but “living out loud” was the description that came to my mind as I contemplated beginning to blog.  Mark Battersonshared some amazingly helpful  thoughts in a recent blog entitled Ten Blog Tips……… he encourages us to know the audience of our blogs asks the question if we would blog if nobody read it! My hope its to be able to answer that question in the affirmative and to write as a vehicle to clarify and articulate the my own thinking, such as it is!!. However, I suspect my primary audience will be the New Life Church Family, I want to know what you think.  So I invite you to join the conversation, come back regularly respond often

Posted June 20, 2008 by jolm15 in Uncategorized