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I stayed up pretty early this morning to watch the lunar eclipse, which was amazing indeed. I wanted to show you all a friend of mine’s astrophotography–it is AMAZING! Phillip and I went to church together as children and teenagers. ?We later went to Southwestern Seminary together as well.

Check out his amazing astrophotography on his website, Visual Universe.

Here is a photo he took last night of the Lunar Eclipse…stunning how God placed everything in it’s place!

Lunar Eclipse, December 2010.  Phillip L. Jones.

Lunar Eclipse, December 2010. Phillip L. Jones.

Advent Conspiracy

Check out this video about how much we spend each year on Christmas alone…staggering. ?Because of our reduction in income this year, we have decided to make our presents this year for people, which I hope will help our boys (and us) realize that Christmas is much more about giving than getting. ?Wow, what we could do if we leveraged what we had to help others instead of spend all of what we have on ourselves!

Enjoy…And then maybe do something about the contradiction. ?Learn more here at Advent Conspiracy.

You can also give to a great missions organization’s Christmas Offering?here that churches all around the world participate in each year. (By the way, 100% of this goes directly to the field…no administrative costs are taken out of this offering). ?You can drill wells. ?You can serve at your local homeless shelter. ?Give new toys to children who won’t have a Christmas this year. ?There is so much to do. You know the drill.

Thanks John for the gentle nudging, I had this post in my “drafts” for a month or so now–it needed to come out in the open! ?I needed to preach to myself here for a little bit, too!!

Advent Conspiracy.

Backstage with U2s Bono and The Edge

I have always been a huge fan of U2 and I also was a “band nerd” in high school and college, so I love Broadway musicals. ?The best of both worlds has collided in a new Broadway musical “Spider-Man: Turn Off the Dark” coming out soon.

What I absolutely love to see in this “60 Minutes Overtime” video is the creative process between Bono, The Edge, and the musicians. ?I have a good friend, Jeremy Ball, who is an amazing guitarist and musician, who has talked about he sees music in “colors.” ?There is place toward the end of this segment where Bono and Edge have this conversation about how the song is just “too brown” and needs some more “color.” ?Brilliant! ?Amazing musicians who see in vivid color. ?I’ll just stick to my simple campfire guitar playing of simple chords. HA!


10 things for which I?m thankful?a not so traditional list

I am slowly getting around to reading some of my friends blog posts in my Google Reader. ?I came across this post from my high school friend Matt Wilkie. ?It is a powerful post on what he is thankful for . . . based on his travels “around the world with Jesus” to spread the Gospel.

Numbers 1 & 2 really hit me hard this morning as I sit inside in the warm typing on a computer with wireless internet. ?My how we take for granted what we have and how God has blessed us–why us, I will never understand!

1. I?m thankful I don?t have sores on my legs because of arsenic in my water supply.

2. I?m thankful we have enough food on our table so we don?t have to consider whether or not to sell a family member to those who might hurt them in order to pay for food for others in the family.

Arsenic in water can cause sores

Arsenic in water can cause sores

Check out the entire list on his blog. ?Amazing.

around the world with Jesus ? Blog Archive ? 10 things for which I?m thankful?a not so traditional list.

My Soul Friends::Darrin Patrick

The idea for this category came from Dr. Daryl Eldridge.?It is based off of the name of his blog–“My Soul Friends.” ?He is one of “my soul friends” too, by the way!

I first met Darrin at the Missouri Baptist Convention’s “Baptist Building” in Jefferson City, MO in the Fall of 2001 at a church planting assessment.? He and I were both walking through the process to plant a church in Missouri; Darrin in St. Louis and myself in Nixa.

My first thoughts about this guy were, “wow, this dude is pretty sharp” and “he knows what he is doing”–both were things that I didn’t feel I had going for me!? (Don’t let the “dumb jock” stuff fool you.? Darrin is a very bright church leader.)? I just felt like God had called me to plant a different kind of church in Nixa to reach people who were not churched. I thought I had my stuff together, but he was a whole lot further down the road with his church than we were with ours.

Darrin had been through several other “boot camps” and was describing the process to me and a couple other guys that were there for the assessment.? (I didn’t even know what a boot camp was, except that I watched my brother’s graduation from boot camp in Chicago from the U.S. Navy!)? From that first meeting, I knew that God was going to do amazing things through my “friend.” (I use friend very loosely because we are not close; I have just admired and kept up with him and his church from afar and the occasional time I would bump into him at conferences–that he was LEADING!!)

God has truly done an amazing thing in The Journey Church in St. Louis, but I think more importantly God has done in his life.? Darrin has been faithful to learn and grow in his walk with Christ as well as hone his “craft.”? I love to hear him teach his people on their podcast each week.? He has been

This sounds like a total love fest for Darrin–and I guess it is. However, there is nothing really “special” about Darrin.? He is simply a guy that takes the Gospel seriously and has followed God’s calling on his life to reach the nations for the Gospel in a city that he loves with a great passion.

Take a look at this interview (you can also download just the audio here) and you will hear his story and insights from his new book, Church Planter.? It is a great read…like sitting down across the table at the Baptist Building in Jefferson City in the fall of 2001.

Conversation with Darrin Patrick ? Justin Taylor.

A note for Jesus

I saw this post on The Buckhead Church Blog…very cool post!? The Church needs to embrace the fact that these little guys are going to be leading us sooner than later!? We need to help them follow hard after God!

A note for Jesus ? The Official Buckhead Church Blog.