sandwiched between gigglers

On Sunday night I pulled into the driveway at about 8:45 ready for some dinner and drooling over the prospect of some much needed bedtime. The weekend had ended. After a couple of days spent with Eden toddling around the halls of MUMC and being the social butterflies that we are (more her than me) at the holiday fair. Shopping, moving tables, changing cd’s, shopping, talking and admiring the crafts, shopping, eating, working on a couple of things in the office here and there, changing diapers, oh yeah and some shopping too I think.
Throw in Saturday church and 3 service on Sunday and it becomes a little more clear why youth group entailed a manditory nap time for everyone.
So I get home and Eden and Katie are asleep on the couch. I put Eden in her crib and heated up dinner. Katie and I ate as we recapped a whirlwind weekend. After dinner we couldn’t wait for the sleep that awaited us. The electric blanket (an early Christmas present for Katie) on the bed had been preheating to the perfect melt into dreamland temp. for about 15 min. As we both slid into the cozy sheets our daughter somehow knew that she was missing out on something and decided to shout her disapproval.
After about 7.39 minutes of her squealing and no end within earshot I decided I would let her fall back to sleep with us.
Nuzzled in the bed is now Mom, Dad and baby. I said to our 14 month old Eden, “well you sure did win this round.” At which she began to laugh, giggle and even snort because her plan had worked.
But it didn’t stop there. The dog hearing the calamity thought that he was missing out on something. In his mind where the is conversation and laughing there is food and most likely an Eden ready to throw some his way. So Kronk bounds into the room and leaps onto the bed and begins wagging his tail, rolling on his back and joining in on the fun.
If you are keeping score at home we now have one giggling baby, one 70 pound lap dog, one mom beginning to join in the revelry of laughter, and a dad wondering what is going on. cornered on all sides by wife, baby and pooch what could I do but begin in the uproar myself.
There we were for about 5 minutes the while Bishop family in the bed infected with a case of the giggles. It was a beautiful thing to behold.
At that moment all i could do is say a prayer of thanks to God as our chorus of laughter spilled from our souls. I could have thought of no more perfect way to end a weekend than being sandwiched between a bunch of gigglers.

it

So I have begun to read a book called “it–how churches and leaders can get it and keep it.”  The author is the founder of lifechurch.tv which has some really awesome resources.  I was interested in this text because this guy was a United Methodist pastor with Methodist roots.

I really resonate with a ton of what he has said in the frost 40 pages or so.  I think that there is something “it” that some churches have and others don’t.  I would be quick to say that a couple of the ingredients that go into “it” are authenticity, passion and an overwhelming love for Christ.

I have been wondering if my church has it or not and the thing that I keep coming to is that we have people that come to our ministries and it is in some ways infectious.  I don’t know what we do but there is something that draws people to MUMC.  I think that we can do a ton better but I do think that we do have something special.  I am interested in seeing where he goes with the book.  Check it out with the link from my side bar.

Shovels, bulldozers and oil drilling

Dozer bulldozers and oil drilling
When you study scripture how do you go about it?
Shovel Slinger: Fling open your Bible, put a finger on a verse (get a scoop of dirt), read it, pray a bit done. You might wonder why God wasn’t very visible in the story that you read about the suffering of Job and his friends. Over time you have a pile of random scoops.
The Oil driller: Find a story in mind, read it, read the study notes about the story, read and research more about it. Drill down to the deep theological meaning. Dredge up the goodness form that story. Then move on to the next thing that you have. (This is what pastors do for Sermons)
The Bulldozer: This is a larger approach to studying the scriptures. This is where you will slowly read, interoperate, digest the scripture layer by layer. Like a bulldozer takes out layer by layer, we read and understand the larger picture and gradually move deeper and deeper.
*Sorry for the not so eco-friendly visuals, but I think that they work on a purely visual level. Rest assured I would have something else to say if we were talking stewardship*

live it

I have a huge stack of reading right now on my desk. I am reading one right now called “Unlearning Church”. I the first chapter Michael Slaughter is talking about what thing the church has as a “radical product”. He says that

revolutionary people are this product of the church.

Now this sounds great!! Especially as today is election day…woot. We are going to flex our voting muscles and have a voice. We are going to vote in a way that we think would be best for our faith, the country, the world and all of creation.

However, what happens when people don’t show up to the voting booth? Your views aren’t counted, or worse nothing happens. Even worse is that you can’t complain when things go your way because you didn’t vote.

Now turning back to Slaughter’s comment. What if the church just sits in the chairs, but doesn’t act upon the message. The church needs to be in the streets voicing, revitalizing and causing a revolution.

What are we doing to live our faith rather than just being culturally Christian?

Church Plant Conf Day 1 wrap-up

So Katie and I were invited to go to a church plant workshop this week.  There are a number of people from all around the east coast UMC.  We are of about 8 or so from our conference.  We had no idea about what to expect during our time at Richmond.  In fact that was one of the things that I have been looking forward to.

So, we begin the seminar and the presenter begins talking about church planting and all of the wonderful things that happens when church plants happen.

AND THEN SOMETHING HAPPEND…

This guy began to make since.  Oh, no this could be the worst thing that could happen.  I am actually buying in, foreseeing a possibility, and even getting excited about the possibility that I could plant a church.

Not only that, but he said that the best way to start a church was with HIGH SCOOL YOUTH!?!?!?!? WHAT (I am in ministry with high school youth).

So we end the day and my head is spinning because I am feeling like this might just be in the cards…YIKES! Hopefully today will stink and it will calm me down a little bit j/k 🙂 we will see.

Fun times in VA and some great learning too.