Tuck and Jake, The Journey Lion #easter2014

Jake…Jake from Journey Kidz! Our children’s ministry’s mascot showed up today to hang out with us. We had 139 kids in Journey Kidz in 2 services. Preliminary numbers show 104 1st Time Guests and 33 New Believers at The Journey…Amazing!! bocajourney.com

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Student Weekend at FBC Oronogo–Saturday Night I preached on the Disciple’s Identity: “Christ in you, the hope of glory” out of Colossians 1:27. The students had been out all day serving at Ronald McDonald House and Watered Gardens; which is really cool to see them getting out into their community to serve. Again, the worship time was really sweet.

I am reminded when I am at these kind of worship experiences of the “soundtrack” of our lives. Read more

C3 Conference 2011

I attended the C3 Conference at Fellowship Church in Grapevine way back in ’06 or ’07 (the year the conference packet was a big question mark.) I was profoundly impacted by all of the speakers, but specifically Andy Stanley’s talk. I remember he talked about having the courage to change things in your church, even if it would be really, really difficult.

I had the opportunity to attend the conference this year with a few people from Calvary Baptist Church. They have been attending the conference for many years as well. I didn’t know what, but I knew God was going to speak to me through this opportunity. Even though I am kind of “in between ministry assignments” right now, it was really great to go and “dream again.”

This years theme was “EXC3ED: Go Beyond What is Allowed.” Here is a Finale video that will give you a taste of the conference.

C3 2011 Finale from Fellowship Church on Vimeo.

I will post later some of the nuggets of truth I took away from this year’s conference. I am very thankful for the opportunity to go and it was a great blessing! I really missed Jenny and the boys, but it was worth it to hear from the Lord in a powerful way!

Plus, we got to see some old friends from our church I served in while attending seminary; which was awesome! Mike and Kris Zumwalt were some youth workers. Jerrell and Brenda Fiske were youth workers as well and Brenda was the church secretary. And Ruby Tucker was Jenny’s prayer partner and our Tucker’s namesake. It was awesome to see them and catch up with all God is doing in their lives!

Sunday Sum Up and Monday is for Missions

Wow, what an awesome day at FP Carthage on Mother’s Day 2010!? We had two great services with two baptisms and four baby/child dedications.? Very cool stuff, indeed.? One of the baptisms was unplanned…the second in about a month.? We had another spur of the moment baptism on Easter Sunday and another yesterday! I think it is really cool to see God moving in the hearts of people so strongly that they disregard their own personal plans for the day, “what will people think of me,” etc., and simply respond to the moving of the Spirit of God.? Reminds me of a group of men that Jesus called out to be his first disciples early on in his ministry. The Bible talks of their reckless abandonment in Matthew 4:18-22

The Calling of the First Disciples

18As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. 19“Come, follow me,” Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men.” 20At once they left their nets and followed him.

21Going on from there, he saw two other brothers, James son of Zebedee and his brother John. They were in a boat with their father Zebedee, preparing their nets. Jesus called them, 22and immediately they left the boat and their father and followed him.

Monday is for Missions. . .

I have talked previously about my friend from high school, Matt, that is works for Convoy of Hope in Springfield, MO.? He is currently in Haiti on a exploratory trip for his Convoy of Hope interns going to serve later this summer in July.? Check out this video of him talking about the “capital C” Church “getting it done” in Haiti after the devastating earthquake this spring.

Forest Park is also going to Haiti this summer. Check out more info. here on our website. You can also email our missions pastor, Brock Cummins-[email protected] for more information about our missions trips this year.

Easter Recap

empty tombAll I can say is “wow!”? What a great Easter Sunday to follow up an extremely crazy week!? God, you are truly amazing to us and we are so thankful!? Just a few things before I head to bed on this Resurrection Sunday…

  • Still processing the death of my friend and co-laborer, Luke Grayson.? His funeral was an amazing celebration of God’s powerful resurrection.? He will be missed greatly.
  • We saw many professions of faith at our presentation of “Bow the Knee” at our FP Joplin Campus.? There have been hours of rehearsals and 4 performances…all for the glory of God!? When you see professions of faith and get to hear faith stories of people after the performance, it makes all of the hard work worth it!
  • Easter Sunday was a great day at FP Carthage!? We saw God move in a mighty way.? We had several decisions for Christ as well as 8 baptisms! We had planned on having 5 people baptized, but one dropped out and 3 added, which left 7 to be baptized in the 2nd service.? I offered the invitation to a new relationship with Christ and then also mentioned that the public profession of faith in Jesus is baptism.? I offered that there might be some here today that had not planned on getting wet today, but that the Holy Spirit was pulling them to go public with their faith.? As I was baptizing our 7 planned people, I noticed one of our teenage guys come down the aisle…he took off his shoes and his outer shirt…he was baptized right there in his jeans!!? I was tearing up like crazy!? Thank you Jesus for this dude’s faith and courage!
  • I believe that we had 22? baptisms today in all of the Forest Park campuses!? I know that there will be several more in the coming weeks as well!? That stuff never gets old!
  • Praying for some families and marriages right now.? My heart is very heavy for them!
  • I am exhausted…Bow the Knee every night this week and twice on Saturday, Duathlon on Saturday, our first baseball practice yesterday, as well as all of the emotional stuff from this morning has really worn me out!
  • Met a really cool guy tonight…Nikolai.? Praying God’s blessings on him and his future.? He has lived a lifetime of tragedy in his life in 22 short years.
  • It is really cool to read FB and Twitter “tweets” from churches across the U.S. tonight.? God really moved in a might way…of course He always does that doesn’t He?

Have a great week!? Live this week in the power of the resurrection!? He is Risen!? He is Alive!? He lives in our hearts!

Sunday Night “Sum Up”–12.13.2009

Each Sunday night I will be summing up the previous week’s events in a “numbered” list, along with the “sum total” of our attendance for the week…even though “I’m not very good with numbers.”

  1. Busy week…goes without saying, I guess.
  2. We got our new Heat Pump installed in our house. Terry did an awesome job and we are so thankful for our people at FPCarthage!!
  3. I am expanding our closet because the air handler is in our closet–on Jenny’s side. ?I am getting there…see pics.
  4. I made these “14 Minute Sawhorses” in about an hour and fifteen minutes…with some expert help from Tucker! They are actually pretty cool…and I used all scraps that were in the shed. ?Most of which were left here by the previous owners–thanks guys!!
  5. I used part of the scrap wood that used to be a really high class shelving unit that we had in our home for the first years of our marriage. ?It was a set of 1 x 12 boards placed on cinder blocks! We carried those boards and blocks around all over the country. ?Classy, I know…but very fiscally responsible!
  6. My mom and dad came down for dinner and Christmas light looking on Monday night. ?Good to have them here!
  7. Had a really good couple of services this morning @FPCarthage!
  8. Man, the band did an awesome job! I had a TON of compliments today on our worship team! Great job, folks!
  9. I am so proud of our Leadership Team!! They did an awesome job today!
  10. Christmas concert was awesome tonight at FP Joplin.
  11. Jenny sang in the choir. ?They did an amazing job!
  12. As Jenny said, “Debbie (Clements) was ‘smooth like butter’ on her solo tonight! ?”I Believe” was amazing! Lots and lots of talented people in the FP family!
  13. Had a great time hanging out with our @FPCarthage folks at Braum’s after the concert.
  14. I think I am coming down with something…my throat is killing me…better get some sleep.
  15. By the way…Our student ministry had 31 students at Fusion tonight! ?Way to GO!!

Monday Morning “Sum Up”–10.19.2009

Each Sunday night I will be summing up the previous week’s events in a “numbered” list, along with the “sum total” of our attendance for the week…even though “I’m not very good with numbers.”

  1. Yes, I know it is Monday morning, but I was wiped out last night and didn’t feel like blogging!
  2. Wow, what a crazy couple of weekends!!
  3. Duathlon was awesome on last Sunday afternoon to kickoof Maple Leaf Week! ?See this post for details.
  4. Still getting some great “ataboys” from folks after we helped with the Duathlon.
  5. The Maple Leaf parade is done! Great job folks in getting a TON of cards out to people!
  6. Looking forward…we have a lot to do to get ready for the Trunk or Treat on Oct. 31st.
  7. Candy, candy, and more candy needed!
  8. Cars, cars, and more cars needed!
  9. Working on some great “Awakening Compassion” projects with the schools as well as wil some guys around here to help take care of “widows and orphans in their distress.” ?Really pumped about the opportunity to serve others!
  10. Group was absolutely CRAZY last night!! ?We had a bunch of random nonsense happen along the way! ?Matt D. was helping me with our radiator that was leaking all over the driveway when they arrived. ?Dogs+trash+kids=a huge mess…enough said. ?And this deserves it’s own number…amazing number 11!
  11. The kids were kicking the pool to “make waves” for the frog in there…kicked a hole in the liner…who knows how many gallons of water flooded out all over the back yard! ?Unbelievable.
  12. Pool liner broken–problem or answer to prayer? ?Jury still out on that one! ?Definately spend a whole lot less on pool chemicals without a pool this summer!
  13. Probably going to have to get our heat pump replaced. ?Our friend Terry is helping us and saving us a ton of money by doing it in “phases.” ?Air handler this winter and then the outside unit this spring (hopefully.) ?That thing is over 20 years old and the house was built around the air handler…our crawl space is less than 2 feet. ?What is the point in having a crawl space when it is that low?
  14. “And the hits just keep on comin’!” Daniel Caffey (Tom Cruise) on “A Few Good Men” to quote an appropriate phrase.
  15. Have a great week!

Sunday Night “Sum Up”–8.23.2009

Each Sunday night I will be summing up the previous week’s events in a “numbered” list, along with the “sum total” of our attendance for the week…even though “I’m not very good with numbers.”

  1. Yes, I realize it is Monday night…but that’s the kind of speed things seem to be going these days! Can’t seem to catch up!
  2. Taylor had his first two days of 3rd grade on Thursday and Friday…dude, I feel old!
  3. Had a very crazy week trying to get ready for our rollout of our new children’s ministry check-in system. ?Boy, technology is awesome…when it is all set up correctly and working properly!
  4. Jenny’s mom, Gwen, had hip replacement surgery on Thursday and is recovering VERY nicely!
  5. Jenny and Tucker went to be with Grandma Gwen on Thursday and Jenny directed the Children’s Choirs rehearsal on Thursday night…Taylor and I took the opportunity to play some golf (celebrating the first day of school).
  6. Worked pretty much all day until picked Taylor up from school on Friday on our check-in system…thought we were ready. ?Not quite.
  7. Hustled to SGF to see Grandma Gwen and then head to the SGF Cardinals Baseball game with the FP staff.
  8. The boys and I came home on Friday night after the game…so we could be here with the dogs.
  9. We were lazy bums on Saturday morning…pancake breakfast at the crack of noon!
  10. Taylor wanted to go to the new skatepart here in Carthage…it is really pretty suit!
  11. Met some pretty cool kids there that were skating…they were very willing to give me some advise on how to help Taylor learn. ?I was quite surprised, honestly. ?I usually have the exact opposite reaction with “skaters.”
  12. Tucker rode his little bike as well.
  13. Smoked some ribs on the BBQ grill. ?Smoked them with hickory. ?They turned out really well. ?Got my info. from amazingribs.com
  14. Went to church to set up for the check-in on Sunday morning.
  15. Sunday morning check-in was pretty crazy…but I think we had a really good day and it is going to be REALLY nice when we a few weeks under our belt.
  16. We had really good attendence at FPCarthage…297!
  17. Hung out with one of our LifeGroups after church for a pool party/BBQ.
  18. Went back to the skate park and met a guy that is a couple of years younger than I am. ?He is a former skater and was there with his two boys and “knocking the rust off” of the ol’ board. ?The guy was really good…and again, very helpful with Taylor learning to “ollie,” the building block for many tricks, etc.
  19. Busy week, but really good!

Sunday Night “Sum Up”–6.28.2009

Each Sunday night I will be summing up the previous week’s events in a “numbered” list, along with the “sum total” of our attendance for the week…even though “I’m not very good with numbers.”

  1. I know, I know, I am a total slacker blogger…but I have been Tweeting a lot more lately. ?(Check out the left column)
  2. We had an awesome Sunday today!!
  3. Baby dedication was great…but, like Aaron Miller said today, kind of like “herding cats.” ?It was definitely dinner time for a couple of the four young ladies!
  4. Be praying for Ryan and Elise McBride along with Noah and Eli! They are pursuing God’s calling to go to serve Gunnison, CO. ?They are a community that is 90% unchurched! ?90%…amazing. God, please give them favor!
  5. Had 296 total people at Carthage today!
  6. Bapt-i-que was really great tonight! Good crowds, good food, good friends and conversation. ?Best of all…some serious diving prowess by Kevin Stratton. ?(Still has after ALL those LONG years since he was a diver at SIU!!) ?Check out the Facebook for some pics. ?I will also post as many pics as possible when I get them.
  7. A huge thank you to all who helped to make the evening a success! ?The Sanders, Yockeys, Friesens, Smiths to name a few! ?You guys are AWESOME!
  8. Still recovering from our “vacation” a couple of weeks ago…maybe I’ll post about it. ?Actually, I should save it and turn it into “National Lampoon’s Branson Vacation.”
  9. Pray for Jenny as she is going to have her gall bladder removed soon (she drove herself to the hospital in the middle of the night on our vacation…one of the many “hits” from our Branson Vacation to remember.)
  10. I am going to the doctor tomorrow for a rear kicking. ?Not eating right, not exercising, etc., etc., etc.
  11. I finally bit the bullet and bought P90X. ?The final nudge was from a pastor/church planter, Shawn Lovejoy, that I read his blog that has been doing it for a year. ?He feels he is the healthiest he has ever been in his life.
  12. I have really felt convicted about my health lately. ?I need to be more healthy for Jenny and the boys. ?They deserve me the best I can be…not some guy that is always tired and worn out all the time!
  13. We had a blast on Thursday night at the Springfield Cardinals game! ?Thanks to Uncle Tad and Aunt Katie for the great tickets (2nd row). ?They gave Taylor the tickets for his birthday in April.
  14. Continuing to work on our painting/wallpaper stripping project this week. ?Jenny finished getting all the wallpaper off the wall in the dining room. ?I am getting ready to texture and then paint. ?Lots of work ahead of us though
  15. Had our 14th Anniversary on Wednesday.
  16. Got our A/C recharged on Monday afternoon…Thanks Terry Ryan!
  17. Dog fence + lightening = Dogs running all over the neighborhood this weekend! (New transmitter and lightning protector in the mail!)
  18. 6 FP students found Christ at camp this week! ?That never gets old!
  19. Got my car back…6 new valves, new timing belt, etc. ?What a mess.
  20. Taylor had his last baseball game of the season. ?They did really good this year!
  21. We got a couple of Betta fish, Nemo and Swimmy. ?(I know we are crazy!)
  22. It is way too late for me to think back to last week!
  23. Good night!

Here are some pics from my phone this week…

Sunday Night “Sum Up”–4.12.2009 (Monday Edition)

Each Sunday night I will be summing up the previous week’s events in a “numbered” list, along with the “sum total” of our attendance for the week…even though “I’m not very good with numbers.”

  1. Had a great Life Group tonight!? Had a game night and really needed to laugh…it was nice!
  2. Finally got most of the mess from the painting of the foyer and hallway cleaned up…mostly, but going to need to put a second coat on . . . stinks.
  3. Yesterday was amazing at FPCarthage!? We had a great crowd with a TON of new faces!? We had 329 people.
  4. The LOST series is going to continue to be AWESOME!
  5. Our FREE Family Portraits were a HUGE hit!? We took a whole lot of pictures and they are turning out really well!
  6. Spent all day on Saturday painting our foyer and upstairs hallway…glad we have an attic fan…some serious fumes going up up in there!? Reminds me of our crazy builder of our house in Ozark.? Walked onto the site and the fumes knocked me over.? Opened the front door, saw his respirator on top of the can of polyurethane.? He sticks his head out of a cabinet he was spraying and was much too giddy for words!? Sad really all of those poor brain cells!
  7. Had a great time at the Jeffries for Easter celebration on Friday night!? The kids got to hunt eggs and we gave Tom and Gwen their anniversary present for their 40th Anniversary! A weekend trip at a condo in Branson with all three families…should be fun!
  8. Taylor went to Grandma Betty’s and Tucker went to Grandma Gwen’s on Thursday night.? Date night for us!!
  9. Taylor dyed Easter eggs with Grandma Betty–an Easter tradition for them!
  10. Tucker wreaked havoc at the Jeffries on Thursday night!
  11. We saw my cousin Mark Sanders and his bride, Michelle at Johnny Carrino’s.? Really like them!? It has been way too long since we had time to sit down and talk.
  12. Eric, Alisha, and Riley Schmidt were at Carrino’s as well.? Those people stinkin’ gave us a free dessert and left before we could thank them!? THANK YOU GUYS!!
  13. Met another neighbor on Wednesday night.? The winds the other night blew our grill cover about 3 acres away in to their yard!? He gave me the “low down” on the whole neighborhood.? Funny stories indeed!
  14. Can’t think of anything else…and you shouldn’t end on 13–bad luck.? Have a great week!