i am chris brown…for now

Hmmmm….

“There’s this sign outside a baker’s shop advertising bread for one dollar a loaf. You go into the shop hungry for bread and imagining the fresh smell of bread right out of the oven, only to find that inside the shop all that is for sale are copies of the sign advertising bread. The church has been too much like the shop.”

T.S. Elliot

October 4, 2008 Posted by | Christianity | | Leave a comment

Today I’ll Witness…

I’ve got a feeling I’m going to witness restored lives today.

I really believe I’ll see the prodigal return to the love of Jesus.

I’ll see the same power that raised Jesus from the dead, alive and active in people’s hearts.

People will stop living for themselves.

Transformation will happen.

Revolution will begin.

August 10, 2008 Posted by | Christianity, Elevation | 2 Comments

Move On

To live is to change, and to have lived well is to have changed often.

-John Henry Newman

Here in Charlotte, God’s given our Pastor a vision….we exist so that people who are far from God will be filled with life in Christ. So that’s what we ground ourselves in–living out the gospel.

We’re not going to be shaken from that vision. But the strategies that will see that vision to fulfillment will always be shifting. We’ve changed a lot since I’ve been here the last year and a half. Pastor Steven consistently challenges us to think in new, groundbreaking, innovative ways….we are constantly tweaking our habits, learning from our mistakes, shifting our thinking, all the while creating our own unique culture.

As brought to our attention today in staff meeting…

Our old way of thinking: How much can I do?
Our new way of thinking: How much can I empower others to do?

I’m so glad we’re not stuck in the “if it’s not broke, don’t fix it” mindset. I’m proud to be a part of a living and breathing movement of God that’s advancing. I’m thankful that we’re not limiting God’s vision for Charlotte to what he’s doing in Oklahoma City or Atlanta or Seattle just because it’s worked for them. I think there’s something wrong with a handful of megachurches casting the mold for what happens in the majority of Christian churches around the world. Listen to the heart of God for your city. Chances are he’s got something uniquely crafted for you…for the people in your city. Let’s learn from each other, not just mimic one another.

Move on. Be ready and open for change. Mature. Don’t be afraid of making mistakes. Take risks. It’ll set you apart. And what makes you unique is what makes you powerful.

July 28, 2008 Posted by | Christianity, Elevation | , | 2 Comments

Join in

I believe it was Chambers who said, Be most in those engagements which have experimentally proven to draw you nearest to Christ.

What is it? What’s the one thing you do that you’ve discovered draws you to the heart of God like nothing else. Find out, make time for it, and do it over and over and over again.

July 13, 2008 Posted by | Christianity | Leave a comment

Spiritual Bankruptcy

“You poor, you nobodies, you of little account by the world’s standards, you are blessed. It is my Father’s good pleasure to give you a privileged place in the kingdom–not because you worked so hard, and not because you are saying all the right things or doing all the right things or becoming all the right things, but because my Father wants you.”

–summation of the first beatitude, Brennan Manning

July 8, 2008 Posted by | Christianity | Leave a comment

Community is good

Last Friday night Beth and I left the hospital realizing how good it is to be among friends who care for another. It was the third night in a row we’d been at CMC with other close friends praying over Wade and Ferris’ little girls, Liana and Adleigh. That night we also celebrated the birth of a monster baby (10.2 lbs), affectionately named Evan, to some of our closest friends, Eric and Nicole. They were right down the hall from each other, so around 12 of us shifted back and forth between their rooms, the cafe, and the hallway where we peered in at Evan Almighty.

I felt great. Life felt right. It made sense.

I heard old high school stories from my favorite storyteller. I laughed at witty Asian humor. I congratulated friends. I prayed more with friends. Hey, I even got 2 hotdogs for $2 on a Friday night special. What could be better?

What do you enjoy about your friends? Let us know.

June 28, 2008 Posted by | Christianity, Friends | | 1 Comment

Faith

You may or may not have heard about my friends Wade and Ferris and their 2 little girls that were born 3 months prematurely last Wednesday night.  If not, please read the story here.  This statement has been echoing recently: “What you do reveals what you believe about God regardless of what you say.”  

They’ve challenged me with their faith.  

They’ve prayed bold “my-God-is-bigger-than-this-medical-report” prayers.  

They’ve told the doctors and nurses there how God is going to deliver Liana and Adleigh. 

They’re not concerned with “if” – only waiting on “when.”

They’ve emptied their love on their girls even if it’s been through incubators.  

They’re two of the most steady people I’ve ever met.  

Their faith won’t be shaken.  

 

June 25, 2008 Posted by | Christianity, Friends | Leave a comment

Welcome To Charlotte

My friend Nate Davis has just moved up to Charlotte to be the new Worship Pastor at Mosaic Church. He’s an incredibly talented guy and I’m pumped to have him up here so I can hang out with him, write with him, and learn from him. Stop by and send love. Welcome the Davis family.

June 25, 2008 Posted by | Christianity, Friends | , | 1 Comment

Blindness

Had a conversation with a friend recently who’s searching. Wanting answers. Isn’t the spiritual life a strange thing sometimes? My friend’s posture seemed to say, in Merton’s words, “God, have mercy on me in the blindness in which I hope I am seeking you.” I’ve been there.

June 13, 2008 Posted by | Christianity | | Leave a comment

For Your Monday Night Pleasure

You’ve probably already seen these, but just in case…

May 5, 2008 Posted by | Christianity | 2 Comments