Friday, August 31, 2007

1 to 1000

10:40 p.m. and I just hit 999. ONE more...who will be that one????

Believe it or not this isn't the only thing I've done today. During this time I've been working on Job descriptions and team descriptions.

8 To 1000

It's about 8:30 p.m. and I'm at 8 to go to have 1,000 visits this month.

Alright Chris...that's enough bragging...I'm trying to celebrate here...LOL

16 From 1000

It's almost 7:00 pm and I am 16 visits away from 1,000 for the month...

And then Chris goes and tells me he's had 1,911...way to go bro!!!

30 Away

It's right at 2:30 p.m. and I'm 30 away from 1,000 hits for the month...WILL I MAKE IT???

Keep tuning in to see.

47 Away

I hope I don't do this all day...but I probably will cause it will be a first...I'm now 47 away from 1,000 hits this month...

Sunday Morning Planning Part 5

For the last week I have been going through a system of how I approach Sunday Morning Planning. I have used system this whole year in youth ministry and it has really allowed me to focus my thinking as well as allow the Holy Spirit to work through me.

If you need to get caught up check out Part 1, Part 2, Part 3 and Part 4.

Today I want to close up this series.

Four weeks out I want to set down with our creative team and go through a message outline. This is a first run at the message where we look at ideas for every portion of the message. Everyone throws out ideas for video, illustrations, stories, bible scripture related to the big idea. Main thing is to ask three questions in relation to the results of hearing the message:
  • How do we want people to think differently?
  • How do we want people to feel differently?
  • How do we want people to act differently?

On the week leading up to the day of the message presentation, I would sit down and type out using the draft what I feel God is speaking on this message. I would hammer out all illustrations and stories as well as the biblical line of thinking. The day before I will usually go over it as well as that morning. This is an area I want to fine tune more for myself.

Since Journey Church is so new there are many systems we want to have in place and Sunday Morning Planning is a system we need to iron out.

If we can get to this type of planning it would allow for a greater synergy with all teams involved. Imagine handing a first draft to a drama team four weeks out so they could create and work on a drama geared specifically for the message. The worship team could really seek God on some specific songs that relate with the message. What about other creative elements? This could allow a greater synergy for the Holy Spirit to move through all the teams.

I may post once more on this as to some hindrances to this type of planning.

Clothe The Naked Part 2

If you didn't read or see the video Clothe The Naked you missed something very random that happened to us in town.

As an update to the story we were actually on the phone at the time with someone who attended church there to let their staff know. We felt they were probably best equipped. Not sure what happened with him cause we had to get our daughter back to school.

I'm just glad she was in with the dentist when we got flashed.

Great Blogging Month

It's been a cool month on my blog...I am 67 hits away from hitting 1,000 hits this month. For me that's cool since I have been serious about this blogging thing only since October '07. I have had about a 37% increase in hits this month.

Don't know if I'll hit that 1,000 today...I haven't had that many hits in a day, but it's cool to be that close.

I know this because I use Google Analytics to track my website.

One Can Make A Difference

Can one make a difference?

Yep...I got this one pimple on the "inside" of my nose and it hurts.

I thought about calling this Rudolph the Red Nosed Pastor.

It caused me to have headaches for about 6 days...

Clothe The Naked

Didn't know this one would be a reality!

I've read the scripture Matthew 25:36 Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me.

And to be honest I wondered if I that first part would be a reality. Little did I know that it could really be true.

My wife and I took one of our daughters to the dentist and we were sitting outside when she noticed someone crawling out of the flowerbed of the church across the street. After stumbling over and falling back into the flowerbed a couple of times this guy finally makes it to his feet...only one problem....his pants were literally at his knees...

SERIOUSLY...on a main street in flowerbed of a church...this guy who was totally wasted stands up and shows the world...

Don't believe me...I got the video to prove it.

Don't worry...I edited out the "parts" that shouldn't be seen.

So it is true...we must clothe the naked...And I had my video camera ready just to show you.

After listening I thought I had hit puberty again...LOL

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Posting Update

Got two posts locked and loaded for one more that is forming. Will continue my Sunday morning planning but with all my posts last night I didn't want to get too much stuff out there today.

Tomorrow be on the lookout for the conclusion of that, (I think).

Also I got one humorous...and another shocking video I took today. Had to do some editing for this one. If you know how to get to my youtube (***hint=it's in my links on this blog) you can find my latest video; but I will have it posted up tomorrow here on the blog.

There is a reason I try to carry that camera around. I was going to do a video reply to Los' rain dilemma...we have had rain here (two water spots formed in the bay today) for three days with about 5 more days to come...that's what it's like living on the East and Third coast Los'. But instead I got a very interesting "flash" of inspiration.

Also made a sweet blogging connection today that I hope to post about in the next few days as I get caught up.


I'm not going to be presumptuous with this post, but want to offer my readers the ability to partner with us in the new thing God is doing in our lives.

We are currently formulating our launch in the Corpus Christi area.

I want to offer partnership to those faithful readers to Making Difference Makers should God lay it on your heart. I believe you can partner in several ways whether you are a church, organization, or individual.
  1. Pray - Our Church has to be founded on prayer support. The work we want to do is far greater than we are skilled or can handle. It has to be a God thing. And for that to happen it has to have prayer support.
  2. Give - Finances are a reality of church life. I'm not here to manipulate anyone into giving by getting on some prosperity soap box. Our family is solely relying on God to support this work. Our vision is to reach this community with the Gospel and change lives. You can partner with us by sowing into the life of this ministry.
  3. Serve - If you are in the Coastal Bend Area and want to get involved on the ground floor of a movement...we are the place. If you live far away and God lays it on your heart to serve here...then we are the place. We are not gonna limit God with how He wants to do it. This church will be a place where you can use your gifts, talents, experiences, and passions to make a difference.
  4. Bring In Those Disconnected With God - Our purpose is to connect people to God. If you are a part of what we are doing live out our purpose and bring your friends, family members, co-workers, and even strangers. Let's live out this life!!!
If you are a church or individual, and God lays it on your heart for any of these...please shoot me an email at and let me know.

Sunday Hangover

I'm still up late here. Major thought on my mind.

This is hang over from Sunday Message.

I don't know if any of you have ever been done wrong. It is the hardest thing to bounce back from. Your mind goes over every detail. You think about the present situation you are in and what could have been done to have not had this happen. You know you have to forgive but every sinew and synapse in you says "no". If you don't you will let it eat at you and your family. You try to ease your mind and say like Jesus said "Father forgive them cause they know not what they do"

You count every day and week and wander what's next? What's going to happen? You pray and live by faith but you know it's hard. You go back and forth and back and forth. You think to yourself you got it under control and then it seems to bounce back. You wish you could sit down and wish Jesus would have never said that one. Wouldn't it been easier if he would have just said it any other way...LOVE THEM...come on Jesus. How can I love them after what they did to me?

Sometimes I think it's easier being the enemy that did the wrong doing. They keep to keep going like nothing happened. Right??? They just get to keep moving on while the repercussions of their actions keep going on and on and on.

I mean this is all theoretically right??? This hasn't ever happened to anyone you know, right??? So what do you do.

You love them like Jesus said. But how. How do you walk up to someone that really hurt you and show them love? How does that happen?

It's easy to get up and preach about it. But now you have to go and do it. What do you do? It's not like you are going to go be buddy buddy best friends.

Are you going to hang out and pretend it never happened?

What do you do?

All of us have gone through this experience in our lives at some point.

Is time the only cure???

Please feel free to answer. I'm sure my friends would like to know. How did you do it?

Random Late Night Thoughts

It's about 12:30 a.m. and I'm wide awake. Actually listening to his frog croak right outside our back window. Had a lot of random thoughts from the day and thought I'd get them out:
  • Faith - Sometimes it's the hardest thing there is when you can't see or touch it. I hate living in uncertainty. God has never let us down and He won't this week.
  • Journey Student Connect Group - Off the hook tonight. 15 people in attendance. Oh yeah.
  • Connect Group Launch - We had over 50% of our Sunday Morning total attendance in Connect Groups tonight. Problem rained like crazy today which probably hurt our numbers. Way to go Journey Church.
  • Rain - It rained way to much today...and it's supposed to do it again tomorrow...and the day after that. Come on up!
  • Love Your Enemies - Man am I having to fight through preaching this message this week. What you think Pastors are immune to this stuff. Yeah right. I probably will commit a whole blog to this one.
  • More Rain - Did I mention it rained today? More like torrential down-pours.
  • Journey Kid's Directors - Hope to be blogging about our Journey Kid's Directors next week. I'm so pumped for Journey Kid's. I get to rock the mic there this Sunday.
  • More, More Rain - Next time I'm gonna video what real rain looks like for Carlos...he didn't even need an umbrella.
  • Journey Church - I feel this deep sense of excitement for Journey Church. What God is about to do and is going to do through this church is gonna be so cool. It is so awesome to be on the ground floor of a movement that is going to shake up this area. But we must be ready. Our body must be ready. Systems must be in place. Leaders and volunteers must be in place if we are to take full advantage of what the Spirit is gonna do. It's like we are on the verge of something great. Something that is rarely heard of. I know that sounds kind of presumptuous to say...kind of like yeah that's what your supposed to say. I really feel like this is what God has worked on for many long years. This is why He has taken our team through the trails of our life. He has prepared and shaped our families for such a time as this. Though circumstances shaped the birth...God has ordained the steps and is ready, aimed and prepared to fire a shot that will be heard around this area. Get ready leaders of Journey Church. Get ready partners of Journey Church.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

The Fundamental State

I've been reading Holy Discontent: Fueling the Fire That Ignites Personal Vision by Bill Hybels this month. This passage stuck out to me powerfully this morning. I wanted to share it with everyone. It comes on page 118.

Professor Quinn puts it this way in his book, Building the Bridge as You Walk On It: "When we accept the world as it is [by living in the normal state], we deny our ability to see something better, and hence our ability to be something better. We become what we behold."

Accepting the world as it is.
Denying our ability to see something better.
Denying our ability to be something better.

This is life in the normal state.
What's not normal, Professor Quinn says, is embracing the fact that another state exists.

"To remain in the normal state is ultimately to choose slow death," asserts Quinn. The normal state is so self-seeking that you can spin your wheels for a lifetime and never once impact the world around you. In the fundamental state, however, people care so much about getting results that they begin to move and breathe in a totally different realm. They operate with intentionality. They act with massive doses of enthusiasm and persistence. They surrender their ego because the cause simply can't afford their pride. They open themselves up to any and all new ideas and forms of input--regardless where those suggestions come from.

People who operate in a "fundamental" state of mind concentrate at higher levels and focus more intensely because the goal they're pursuing demands it. They take risks they wouldn't normally take ... because they have to--there's to much at stake not to! Their creativity kicks up a notch. Their energy soars. Their passion swells.

What a picture of what can happen to a church if we accept or don't accept the state we are in. I hope that can be an inspiration to someone.

Journey Students

I'm really pumped about tonight. We are launching our Journey Student Ministry Weekly Connect Group.

This is another area we feel is vital for our growth. I will be putting together a team that will focus on this area.

Tonight we will be kicking off with a discussion on Making A Difference.

Sunday Morning Planning Part 4

If you have stumbled along my blog today I have been in a series of posts on Sunday Morning Planning.

Yesterday I posted about having a yearly calendar.

Today I am going to elaborate a little more.

Once I have my yearly calendar in place, I will then begin to focus in on each series that is coming up.

In the past when I was about 5 or 6 weeks out (I really want to take this to 9 or 10 weeks out) I would take that up coming series and break down what I feel God would want to say in it.

I like to communicate in a series giving only one point per message. Most of the time I have seen Pastors try to overload their message with so much good stuff that it only shuts down people's mind. Less is more and when you communicate on one point you can really dig in and make your point. Dave Ferguson really elaborates on this point in his book The BIG IDEA.

About 5 to 6 weeks our I would create a series synopsis with big ideas, graphics, video teasers, and other ideas for the series. You can look at one of my past series synopsis' here.

Again this whole process is bathed in prayer and worked on mostly and hopefully in teams. We are relying completely on the Holy Spirit to enlighten our way. Once the series synopsis is completed we will be able to laser focus in on each message with our team putting all our resources together.

In the next two days, I will finish out this planning series with the four weeks out from the date of speaking up to the day of speaking.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Sunday Morning Planning Part 3

Last week I started a small series here about Sunday Morning Planning. Today, I will start with planning a one year calendar.

I said there are basically two fields of thoughts. One, plan out all your details. Two, allow God to have control of the service.

The real reality is that most people really do meet somewhere in the middle. Some just stray closer to one side or the other from someones else's perspective. I honestly don't know anyone that does not do some planning. Even if it is 1 hour before start time. My only difference is I start sometimes a year or more out.

I thought I would go over how I have prepared and feel is a balanced approach for me as well as something you could use as a leader or pastor in your church or department.

I, personally, am a big proponent of planning. So much so that most people label me as someone that doesn't allow God to flow.

I have to admit that this is truly funny. Why??? Probably because I trust God through every point of my process. In fact, there is not a single element in planning that I am not trusting God and allowing Him to work through me.

My planning for each experience really starts in the previous year. Throughout the year I am constantly praying, mediating and looking for ideas for series that can be preached. When I get one I will write it down in one of my notebooks. I also have some times where I will sit for an hour or two and just brainstorm out some possible series.

In September (and this may become part of our process at Journey Church) I will pray and detail out the next years preaching calendar. This is just a rough calendar that includes which series we will do each month. I personal like to do a series per month as I typically don't like to go over 5 weeks as you seem to lose momentum.

Again this is a totally faith process. It takes a whole lot of faith to sit down and believe God for what He wants you to speak in November of next year.

This is something I have been doing for about 7 or 8 years and really helps me target in my study time throughout the year as I go into each series.

Of course there is always room for flexibility and change and you need to be open to that but it is great to have a target to shoot at.

The great thing about leadership is being able to look and think ahead. It is being in communion with God for what He does want you to speak.

Tomorrow, I will continue to share the next step of this process.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Sunday Planning Will Continue

I'll be continuing my line of thinking on Sunday Morning Planning tomorrow. Today I spent a lot of time remixing the podcast.

Catch up with Part 1 and Part 2.

Love Your Enemies Podcast

This weekend I had the honor of preaching at our adult experience at Journey Church. This week we continued our series called "Why Did Jesus Have To Say That". The message I taught was called Love Your Enemies. Boy was it a tough one.

To be honest I want to punch some of my enemies...but Jesus calls us to a higher standard. Be sure to check it out.

-->> Download the MP3 directly here <<--

-->> Listen online here <<--

More Sunday Remix

I'm loving this whole google thing. Next week I'll put the slide show in my Sunday Remix post. But for are the pictures from our Sunday 8-26-07 Experience.

See that empty chair...we're saving it just for you!!!

Staying Fresh As A Leader

For all my readers out there...please go watch this video by Steven Furtick. It is at

It is about 4 minutes long and emphasizes how to stay fresh as a leader.

Good stuff Steven. Steven is the lead pastor of Elevation Church, a church God is utilizing mightily in North Carolina.

Just like to give you some great stuff when I find it.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Sunday Remix

Fifth week in the books at Journey Church. It is neat to see what is happening.

Of course when you start something, you want everybody and their granma's granma there. You hope that all your past friends are going to be there to support you and jump onboard. You hope God is going to draw in the lost. You really have a whole lot of expectations.
  • I had a real sense of coming together today. It felt like our body was on board and they were working. First time so far I felt a real sense of momentum.
  • Over 50% of our adults were serving in some capacity today. I'm just not going to by into the urban-church myth that says only 20% serve. Nope...Not gonna do it.
  • I got to preach today. Love Your Enemies was my topic. Tough one for me. Aggghhh.... Guess those people that have done me wrong are gonna have to look for some love. I'll be praying for ya.
  • "I" forgot to plug in the laptop so our computer died 3/4 of the way through the message. So tonight I am hopefully re-doing that portion for our podcast.
  • Our connexion lunch went awesome yesterday. We had a great response and it is something I see can help our new guests get onboard.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Connexion Lunch

Short post this morning...We are off to our first Connexion Lunch. This is a lunch where everyone who has been a guest of ours at Journey Church will get to go a little more in depth with us. We will be doing these Connexion Lunches every month or two.

The purpose of this lunch is to go over the vision, ask for a commitment and present ministry opportunities.

At this lunch we challenge those who have been coming and checking us out to commit to us for at least a year. By commit we mean just that; commit to attending, commit to being in a Journey Connect Group and commit to serving.

Jesus gave those early listeners a huge challenge of commitment. He said, "Follow me, and I'll make you fishers of men."

We at Journey Church are saying just about the same thing.

Commit to us for a year and we feel your life will never be the same.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Church Behind The Scenes

Wanted to drop a couple of sites you might use as a resource is you are a church planter or pastor.

These sites give a behind the scenes look at a couple of churches by telling some of the in's and out's on how they do it.

First is Elevation Church in Charlotte, North Carolina is pastored by Steven Furtick. In the 18 months since launching they have grown to reaching over 2,000 weekly. Their blog Access Elevation gives you a behind the scenes look.

Second is Oak Leaf Church in Cartersville, Georgia is pastored by Michael Lukaszewski. Oak Leaf just celebrated their one year birthday since launching and has quickly grown to reaching over 700 in their weekly Sunday service. You can get many resources from Behind The Leaf as well as some great posts to help you as you pastor.

Make sure to check out our Journey as well as we will be posting many of our thoughts along the way at the Journey Inside. There are already a few posts up and we hope to post many more along the way.

If you know of any other church sites that are giving a behind the scene look please leave a comment with their link. I would enjoy looking.

Sunday Morning Planning Part 2

Yesterday I talked about the need for having a balanced approach to Sunday Morning Planning. We talked specifically about having no planning and how ridiculous that would be.

I really don't know anyone that does no planning at all. What I do know is that almost everyone does some type of planning.

But can there be too much planning.

This is a hard one for me because it is so much part of my personality. Tomorrow I will talk about how it all works in my head.

The thought for some out there is that we plan so much that we don't allow God to even have His way. If God is "moving" and at 11:28 it says on our schedule to go to the next element then we can grieve the Holy Spirit at that moment by not allowing "Him" to have "His" way.

Or maybe God has a unique thing He wants to say that morning but because the pastor has his message all typed out it doesn't allow God into the message.

I could go on and on in this vein and to a degree there could be some truth in there. But then again maybe it's all God anyway.

Much of this is just a matter of perspective. Be on the lookout in a future post on Part 3 which I will present my approach and what works for me and could work for anyone.

If you didn't read it check out Part 1 of Sunday Morning Planning.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Sunday Morning Planning

The other day my partner Dean and I were talking about planning and letting God move in our Sunday morning experience.

There seems to be two schools of thought out in ministry on this issue. School one is that we need to let the Holy Spirit flow and have control. School number two is plan and detail out every minute.

Dean and I felt that we at Journey Church are right in the middle of the two.

Over the next few posts I want to expound on a great process that I feel you could implement that might help you be more effective as well as let you in on my thoughts on ministry planning for church gatherings in any setting.

There are often times in the past that I have been accused of being very rigid and not allowing the Holy Spirit to flow. That I want to plan out every detail. Truth be told...I do want to have every detail planned out...but not at the expense of not having God in control. For me God controls the aspect of the plan. He controls the elements of the plan. So for me...Sunday morning is all about God being in control.

Remember there are three elements we are working with on Sunday mornings.

1. Staff and Volunteers
2. New First Time Guests
3. Committed Members or Partners in Ministry

Now all three of these kind of work in sync with each other especially if you want to be effective.

Your staff and volunteers need to know what is going on if they are to know what they need to do.

Because people crave order and guests should be presented with a presentation that doesn't look like it was just thrown together.

*** Side Note - (Tell me the truth...if you went to a restaurant that was chaotic and due to it the service was poor...the environment was filthy...they got your order wrong...WOULD YOU GO BACK??? Why then do we not have that expectation of what we put out? I guarantee that our guests do.)

Your committed members and partners also deserve our best as well. People will put up with a lot for a long time...but given the option who knows.

I think we all can agree that there should be some planning when it comes to our gatherings. So then how much is too much. Tomorrow, I'll try to go to the other extreme. Although that one is going to be harder for me.

Then I will try to post on how I think it might can work in a balanced approach.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007


September 24th Baby...

H - E - R - O - E - S

Writers Block

Feels like writers block tonight...or maybe it's just a lot of mental distractions. That's a better word than A.D.D.

I've spent the better half of this week focusing on our internet presence. Met a great guy today out of the blue online.

God has unique ways of connecting people that goes beyond how we think it can happen. People come from all walks of life and are made up of various personalities.

I used to have this guy as a boss who always said we needed to call to make a personal connection by calling. For some people, especially in today's world, you can make a connection in various ways and they are just as personal.

For me, send me a email or a myspace and I'm cool with that. In fact I like that so much more than a phone call. For others it may mean calling them. It all comes down to understanding that God is so much bigger and can work in so many more ways than we think (even online).

I met one of my latest friends online in a virtual world church. And to this day we have never talked verbally, only online through instant messaging.

Never under estimate how you can reach people today.

And if there are any churches out there who would like to get more into online social networking I could help you get started. (Was that a shameless plug?) Nah...just want to be a help to anyone out there.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Why Not

After my post yesterday, I started out thinking today why not.

Why would a church not want to experience growth? Why would a church not want to do things with excellence? Why would a person not want to be a part of a church that is really moving and doing something?

I think it's lip service partly and I think that some pastors who are leading churches just simply don't know how to get it done.

They don't know how to motivate their people to reach out. They don't know how to set up organizational systems that will handle this.

Remember we live in a totally different culture as well as era than Acts 2. The culture we live in is used to seeing businesses with excellence. They are used to going down to the latest and hippest restaurant and getting excellent service and being in an environment that is done to reach them.

But in church we just only want to handle the spiritual dynamic and think that people are going to come, be attracted to, and stay at something that they may consider lame.

And then we give the excuse that we just want to be spiritual and people see us for who we truly are.

And they are seeing you and they are not coming back.

Reality check. You can be culturally relevant, have a great environment that reaches the lost, and be spiritual.

So why not? Why not go for it?

Monday, August 20, 2007

Crazy Thought

Had a crazy thought....but I don't know if I will do it....I thought about blogging my whole day here on my site....what I do every 15 minutes...don't know if I will do it...but it's a thought...

What do you think????

My Reasons Part 3

My discussion as of late has been on why I do what I do.

I have given a couple of reasons so far and today I will give you my third and final reason.

The reason why I pastor is that there are many people out in this world that are spiritually separated from God. There is this passion in me that we want to create a church that makes it hard for people to go to hell in our area. And not only in our area but in our world.

One of the statements that people have been saying to us lately is this sort of what we feel is a spiritually humble thing to say. Well if God only sends us a few lets be just be faithful. Whether it's 5 or 500...

I'm tired of hearing that.

Now let me preface this by saying that "YES, I'M ABOUT THE NUMBERS". And Journey Church should be about the numbers as well.

Last time I looked at the statistics well under 50% of the people in our area do not attend church. I would be really surprised if around 30% are in true Bible-based churces.

Here in Corpus there is one very large church called Bayarea that runs around 5,000 to 6,000 people. Now if my numbers are right that is only 2% of the county population.

That is why I really believe that over 70% of the people in our county and area need churches that are about the numbers.


I am so tired of this false humility in the church. "If" our churches are fulfilling the mission Jesus has given the church of going and making disciples then numbers should be a by-product of fulfilling that mission.

And I really mean BY-PRODUCT. Our vision isn't on building a mega church. Our vision is on helping people connect to God, live the journey, and impact the world.

If we are doing that on a daily basis then guess what the by-product will be???


Folks let's get this right. Let's get off this super spiritual humble high horse that is only false humility and realize that there is a lost and dying world and God has called us to reach them.

I do it because it's in me.

What's In You? What are your reasons? I want to hear from you leave me a comment.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Our Podcast

I was and am having some problems with our Journey Church Podcast site today. I think I have the latest one updated. While I was doing that which took me all afternoon, it deleted some of our past ones. Not sure why. I am going to check it out tomorrow and see what's up.

The latest one is up. Check out Dean preaching on our new series called "Why Did Jesus Have To Say That". The message is called Lose Your Life.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Continuing Reason

I've decided to post my last reason on Monday. So be on the lookout. If you didn't read the first two check out Part 1 and Part 2.

Also don't forget to tell me your reasons. I really want to know. Just hit that little comment button and let me know.

To Kids???

Well tomorrow I get to speak in Journey Kids. As we are pre-launching here, we are doing some double and triple duties. Each week Dean and I are switching out from our adult experience to our kids experience.

It is fun and challenging. We are doing the same message theme for each one and are just changing it up a little to reach the age group we are speaking to.

All of this while we continue to build our launch team in expectation of our October Launch.

The way we are doing it is going to be a key to how we do it in the future as well. We hope to integrate our messages throughout the whole Journey experience. This will be a way the whole family is able to process the message each week together.

There may be some series with a very adult message that won't carry down but overall we will strive to implement our message throughout every age group.

Friday, August 17, 2007

My Date With Eternity

Wednesday, August 31, 2061...

Yep that's right...according to I am going to make it to the ripe age of 92. Lots of work to do until them and I want to make the most of it.

Hope that wasn't to morbid for you.

My Reasons Part 2

This is part 2 of my reasons for why I do what I do.

What is it I do??? Well, in a nut is helping people make an impact in their world.

Oh, but I thought you Pastored.

Isn't that what I said???

Helping people make an impact in their world is what I feel pastoring is all about. Many, and I mean many people really do want to make a difference in this world. They have dreams and visions of being someone or doing something.

I feel that what I get to do is partner with people to help them make an impact. Probably one of my greatest joys is when I see the people I get the privilege of leading experience the joy of fulfilling some of the desires of their heart.

I love motivating people with how they "can" do it. How they can go out and change the world! How their homes can be filled with joy and love! How their schools can be different! How they can impact their workplace! How this world can be a better place because of them!

Stay tuned tomorrow as I give one more reason why I do what I do.

These are some my reasons what are yours???

Two Days Of Volleyball

Off for a full two days of volleyball...thanks to an unexpected tournament added to my daughters volleyball schedule yesterday.

For those that don't know...our oldest daughter goes to Calallen H.S. as a Freshman this year. She made and starts on the JV team as the setter. She is so awesome and works really hard. I'm proud of the woman of God she is becoming.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Working On Our Systems

Couple of things I got done today. Typed up a first time guest letter and created our assimilation strategy.

A couple of systems we are focusing on creating for our first year are:
  1. Sunday Morning Experience
  2. Evangelism & Outreach
  3. Assimilation
  4. Internet
  5. Baptisms
  6. Business Structure - Records, Accounting, & Legal Structure
  7. Leadership Development
  8. Small Groups
  9. Family Ministries

My Reasons Part 1

There are several reason I do what I do. Let me back up for a minute and tell you what it is I do.

For the past 14 years I have been called to ministry as a pastor. It is a calling that I hold with high regards. It is not something I do because I don't have anything else to do. It is not something I do because it is the only thing I know how to do. It is not something I do because I've never done anything else.

It is something I do because I am called to it. Over the 14 years I have wrestled over it. I have tried to subdue it. At one point I tried to ignore it. It was the one thing that always came back to the surface.

For me I know it because of several reasons. It has been verified by others within His body. I have seen God bless the work of my hands. His Spirit bears witness with mine. I have stood the test of trials and time. It has been verified by His prophets. He has spoken through His Word to me.

About 14 years ago I was praying one morning and God opened up His Word to me in what I feel at that time was to be my calling and reasoning for ministry. It is one of the only a handful of times it has happened to me like that.

Isaiah 62:10
10 Pass through, pass through the gates!
Prepare the way for the people.
Build up, build up the highway!
Remove the stones.
Raise a banner for the nations.

Now this spoke to me in a great way that morning as I felt God was telling me what His calling for me was going to be. It is just one of the reasons why I do what I do.

Six Leadership Laws For Journey

Over the past week I have added to the Journey Inside a list of six leadership laws for our staff and volunteer leaders.

Below are the links to each laws with a statement of how someone you lead will feel with you leading from that law.

1 - Pacesetter = I love following who you are.
2 - Visionary = I'm consistently excited about what I do.
3 - Director = I understand what I need to do to succeed.
4 - Recruiter = I feel personally assisted.
5 - Coach = I am becoming a better player on a better team.
6 - Friend = I feel cared for by God and others as I do what I am called to.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Be A Friend

Last Leadership law is up at Journey Inside.

Law Number Six is about being a FRIEND.

Why Did Jesus Graphic 2

After about 2 hours of work...I'm a lot more pleased with this graphic for the next series.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Don't Drink The Water

So this afternoon we got hit with this news

City will remain under boil-water notice until it is lifted by state's environmental agency.

E-coli scare sends residents on hunt for bottled water

How long??? Don't know!!!

Half of the restaurants in town are closed.

All I do know is that I'm the proud owner of about 15 gallons of bottled water.

Latest Graphic or Not

My wife informed me that she didn't like my it looks like it is back to the drawing board.

Be A Coach

Just posted up the fifth leadership principal for our leaders success. Being a "coach" is something ever leader should work to excel at. Go over to the Journey Inside as we continue the discussion and take an insider look at Journey Church.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Next Series Graphic

Next series starting this week is called, "Why Did Jesus Have To Say That". Finished the graphic and have to admit that I'm not 100% sold on it. Problem is with my technology it is about all I can do.

Be A Recruiter

Over on the "Journey Inside", our insider look at Journey Church, I just added our fourth leadership law for our leaders.

The fourth law is RECRUITER.

Over at my youtube site I also have a short video series on recruiting. Click here if you haven't seen it.

If you would like to get caught up, here are the links to the other laws so far:

Part 1 - Pacesetter
Part 2 - Visionary
Part 3 - Director

Living The Journey

Here is our latest podcast.

This is the third episode of the Journey Church Podcast consisting of our vision & offering by Dean Bearden and message by Jason Curlee called Living The Journey. It concludes our What If Series.

Subscribe Through ITUNES!!! (Need ITUNES...Click Here For Free Download)

-->> Download the MP3 directly here<<--

-->> Listen online here <<--

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Sunday Re-View

Wrapped up weekend three of Journey Church.

Wrapped up our first series called What If?, which was a series looking at Acts and our purpose statement.

Wrapped up three weeks of God growing us. He is blowing me away.

Wrapped up a great time after church with a new couple from our church. Great food---great time!

Wrapped up throwing away my pool which has been laying in my backyard cause I can't find the whole in it.

Great Sunday...that's my re-view.

Week 3

Week three at the Journey Church. I'm pumped. It is so exciting to see God at work. I get the privilege of doing the message today. We wrap up our What If? series on our vision. Today - "Living The Journey".

Did I already say I'm pumped.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

New Reads

Some people like getting new dud's, others like getting new do's...I like getting new reads. Got two new reads this week:

First one is Creating Community: Five Keys to Building a Small Group Culture by Andy Stanley and Bill Willits.

As we set out to build our small group culture at Journey Church, I am looking at how various churches are doing it successfully. Creating Community is about how North Point Community Church has created their small group culture.

The second book I bought is Holy Discontent: Fueling the Fire That Ignites Personal Vision by Bill Hybels. Hybels pastors Willow Creek Community Church. This book looks to be very inspiring which is why I want to read it.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Be Ready

I am so pumped about this Sunday. It is so awesome to finally get to let God work through us the way He wants to.

After 14 years of ministry and working for other people and their wants and desires...we finally get to do ministry how God has laid it on our hearts. Journey Church is the most awesome church I have been part of.

For 14 years we have laid down our lives to allow others to achieve their dreams, all the while letting God birth this movement. It is finally great to let God be God now. I really value the lessons learned from some of the churches I have been at. First Assembly allowed me to grow and be the man of God and pastor God wanted me to be. Faith Family Church sharpened me like no other. I really love and appreciate those two men God put across my path.

It is through them that part of this movement has been birthed...through the sacrifice and diligence they have served.

And now the dream is beginning...Journey Church is launched and there is no going back. It is all God now. Be ready and be prepared for God to show up and show off in the Coastal Bend area.

Catch Up On The Laws

If you blinked and missed it, on the "Journey Inside", our insider look at Journey Church, I've been discussing six leadership principals for our leaders.

If you would like to get caught up here are the links so far:

Part 1 - Pacesetter
Part 2 - Visionary
Part 3 - Director

Thursday, August 09, 2007

My Office Secrets

Simply Awesome

Granger's new series "My Office Secrets" with their marketing for it.

Go make your confession!!!

True Community

This week I am finishing up our "What If?" series with a message called Living The Journey. The main text comes from Acts 2:41-47 out of the message bible.

Acts 2:41-47
That day about three thousand took him at his word, were baptized and were signed up. They committed themselves to the teaching of the apostles, the life together, the common meal, and the prayers.
43-45Everyone around was in awe—all those wonders and signs done through the apostles! And all the believers lived in a wonderful harmony, holding everything in common. They sold whatever they owned and pooled their resources so that each person's need was met.
46-47They followed a daily discipline of worship in the Temple followed by meals at home, every meal a celebration, exuberant and joyful, as they praised God. People in general liked what they saw. Every day their number grew as God added those who were saved.

Probably one of the biggest things a church can do is build true community. Now I'm not going to propose how you can do it. Here at Journey Church we feel we are going to build it through our Journey Connect Groups. These are going to be small groups of people who will meet in homes throughout the week and bring true discipleship and interaction with each other.

These groups are also going to link up believers also with a goal to impact their world. Each group may do that differently but it is going to be where we live out true discipleship.

When you look back over that scripture you see that God added to their number. At Journey Church we believe that happened because of the previous statement: "People in general liked what they saw."

What did they see...TRUE COMMUNITY.

Being A Visionary

Just put in our second leadership principle in Journey Inside. Check out being a VISIONARY.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Be A Pacesetter

On the Journey Inside, which is a behind the scenes/leadership development blog for Journey Church, I have begun a six part series on our staff/leader culture. This is going to be one part that will be vital for the long range success of our teams.

Today, I started with the first leadership law for our culture which is being a PACESETTER.

If you feel you are going to be a key part of what we are doing here at Journey Church or want to further develop your team or self I encourage you to go over and read and begin to implement some of the thoughts and principles you feel fit you.

Get Out Of The Way

So much of what we call management consists in making it difficult for people to work.
- Peter Drucker

Great quote from Drucker there. I wonder if that is true about Pastors. Do you think that when it comes to managing volunteers and getting them more involved that sometimes the Pastor is just making it more difficult?

As a lead pastor or as a department head you are charged with training people to do the work of the ministry. I, many times, have to fight the urge to micro-manage. Everyone has been given talents, spiritual gifts, experiences, a personality and certain passions in their life. It is our role to make it easy for people to utilize that mix in ministry. And sometimes that means getting out of the way and letting people work. Or it may mean allowing people to grow in their area of ministry. They may not do as great as you at first and you may have to sacrifice a bit of quality as they settle in. But in the end you may be more surprised as their gift-mix will allow more to happen than it would have with you controlling it.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

The Plans Ahead

Feels like so much to do and so little time. So we are taking this journey one day at a time. Today in our staff meeting, Dean and I laid out our calendar for the next three months and decided on a few tasks each of us is going to work on.

I am going to begin setting up our teaching calendar to help us be on track for the rest of 2007 so look for that coming out on the Journey Inside within a few weeks.

Dean has an idea for "Man Church" which we plan to launch in September. Our Journey Connect Groups will be launching at the end of this month. And we will have our first Guest Connect Luncheon on the last Saturday of this month. The ladies will be launching "Simply Sisters". And Journey Student Ministry will kick off quickly.

Here's the deal: I've heard a lot about following the principles of "How To Launch A Church". And there are a lot of principles out there that we are going to follow. But at the same time we are going to let God be God and not tell Him how to do it.

We are going to lay out some plans and goals and let God show us just how big of a God He really is by smashing the ceiling off the house. Who am I to tell God He can't just go ahead and make it all happen.

Bragging On God

Well you know it had to start or come eventually. I'm going to brag on God for Journey Church. This won't be the last.

God came through beyond what we imagined or thought was possible this week for Journey Church here in Corpus Christi. And I really believe that He is going to completely amaze us over the years to come.

For those that are praying know that your prayers are working and please don't stop. Oh and Chris...thanks bro, it's working.

Bashing Churches

Today as I was checking the stats to my blog using Google Analytics I noticed I got one hit from a google search for "blogs bashing newspring church".

For those that may not know, Newspring Church is in Anderson, South Carolina and is pastored by a guy named Perry Noble.

Perry writes a very popular blog and for reasons I can't understand gets criticized by Churches. Their church has grown to be a church that averages around 7,000. (Newspring guys and gals if I got that number wrong, sorry.)

I just want to go on record that we nor I are "not" a blog, church, pastor, or flat out anything that bashes Newspring.

I got total respect for these guys and would actually love to either go visit and see what they are doing or talk with a certain someone or other someone from there about what is going on. I think there is a whole lot Journey Church can learn from Newspring.

Just like our church could learn a lot from Bayarea which is in our city. I got a chance to go visit them last month and I have the utmost respect for them. I thought their Pastor Bil Cornelius presented an awesome message and I was actually shocked since I had "heard" so many things through the years from pastors and Christians. It really saddens me when churches can't recognize that just because we don't do "church" the same way doesn't mean that certain other churches aren't "of God."

I really feel there are many pastors out there that need to grow up when it comes to this. You would get farther ahead in your church if you learned from some of these men. It doesn't mean you have to adopt everything or believe everything they do. There are so many things that these men of God and these churches are doing right to reach the lost.

Here's the deal. If you don't have the guts to go to one of these churches or sit down and speak to these pastors of growing churches, one on one...then do us all a favor and shut-up.

Now if you just want to keep your little holy huddle "us four and no more" then by all means do it but shut-up.

I would even go as far to say that one reason you are probably not growing (if you even want to) is because you are criticizing some mighty works of God.

And if you are part of Journey Church, know that we are going to edify and pray for other churches out there that God is using to reach the lost. And we are going to be a church that grows because there are numbers of lost people out there in this city that God has called us too. And we are going to be a church that does whatever it takes to Connect Them With God.

And we are going to Impact This World.

Monday, August 06, 2007

How The Day Went

Don't know how they do it...but today was one long day.

Anyone who wants to sow a seed into this brothers life as he continues the journey of launching a church with his partners...JUST LET ME KNOW.

I'll give you all the details on how you can be a small part of what God is doing in Corpus Christi.


Wow...Post 600. And climbing. What a great journey I'm on.


Today stands to be very interesting. I go on a test run as part of an interview to be a Schwann's Driver. If you are successful in your first interview, they let you go out with a driver one day as a test to see what you will be like.

All I know is it is going to be a hhhhhooooottttt one!!!

Sunday, August 05, 2007

Second Week Complete

Today marked the second week of Journey Church. All I can say is wow. God is so awesome. My main buddy said we would double over the week and to God's credit...He made it happen.

Our adult experience doubled. 46 total people on hand. God is doing something awesome and I am going to brag on Him.

It is so awesome to be a small part of something big that God is doing. This journey is going to be a fun one.

If you want to hear it, our second week of podcasting our Journey is live. Here is the download.

Two Things Learned

So I figured out two things tonight.

I am out of rhythm when it comes to message prep. Over the years I have learned to develop a rhythm when it comes to developing my messages. It is a system I use to allow God to work through me. Taking a month off believe it or not has gotten me off that rhythm as well as the systematic way of developing series.

Second thing I learned is really something I already knew. I'm not a children's pastor...way out of my box. I mean way out there. Don't even know if I'll even be in the ballpark.

But I'll do my best in trying to relate to them.

Definitely got to get back in the rhythm though.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

Second Week At The Journey

This journey is absolutly so much fun. Hard, yes. Filled with challenges, yes. But in it all FUN.

I have always been geared as a builder. By that I mean I have always loved the challenge of taking something that is nothing and building it to something great.

That is probably why I relish the challenge of building Journey Church with my partners and our families.

Tomorrow is our second soft-launch experience. I am so excited to see what happens from week one to week two.

My role this week. Give a five minute take on our vision, give an offering message, and then jump into our Journey Kid's area and do the message for them.

Be excited and be in prayer as we continue the JOURNEY.

Friday, August 03, 2007

Skater Falls 50 Feet And Walks Away

Saw this last night and immediately thought about Psalm 91. Especially verse 11-12.

Making Difference Makers - Recruiting Part 3

Making Difference Makers - Recruiting Part 3

A video on using vision to recruit.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Somewhere In There Is Content

So far this week in all of the other things I have been posting I have talked about improving your blogging.

If you are a blogger out there and are trying to build up your "brand", there are a couple of things you could be doing.

Now I'm sure there are plenty others and that there are shortcuts to getting there faster, but these are from my experience and would play across the board no matter which way you look at it.

Third tip has to deal with content. Yeah, I got to be kidding coming from you. I blog very A.D.D. It makes sense in my mind. I can blog about one thing...then kick off in three or four different directions and come back like I haven't missed a beat. I only hope you can read like that.

Now remember I blog for a couple of purposes. What that means is this blog may at times go all over the place.

But somewhere in there you have got to bring content. You have got to be consistent in bringing that content. Remember, being consistent with great content can help you as you continue to build your blogging base.

So my three tips in building your blogging base:

1. Be Consistent
2. Contribute To Other Bloggers
3. Bring Content

Getting My Link

Had a buddy of mine ask how I secured or procured my new link.

It was rather simple as well as painless to the wallet.

I went to and searched to see if the site was available. It was by the way. Purchased it for less than $10. And then redirected it to go to my blogspot.


Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Busy At Work This Week

Whew...I have been busy today and for the last few days working on all these websites. For us this is going to be crucial over the life of Journey Church.

Setting up all of these initial blogs and web 2.0 applications will make it easy as we go down the road.

Interestingly in two days we have already had over 30 downloads of our podcast.

I even updated and gave a fresh coat to my own myspace.

Don't know if it makes me official or not but I am now

We'll that's not my name, it's my new web link. If you are reading this through a feedreader there are no don't you worry.

Go ahead make me feel

Journey Church Podcast

Got our podcast up and rolling last night. Hear our other Sr. Leadership Team Pastor speak about our vision and then I spoke a message about Impacting Our World.

We are doing a three week series that deals with our vision called "What If?".

The series is mainly asking the question what would it look like if what happened in the book of Acts happened in Journey Church.

It is in the process of being added to Itunes for those that would like to listen through that method.

Later this week or next I'll be posting on the process of setting up the podcast at our Journey Inside site to help other churches begin this process.