Tuesday, March 17, 2009

things they don't teach you in seminary...

i came across this interesting blog and thought it was worthy of a repost... here is 9marks.com's list of 17 things seminary doesn't teach:

1. How to tell a man his wife just died.
2. How to tell a couple they should not get married.
3. How to tell a staff member he is fired.
4. How to tell my wife that I am depressed.
5. How to tell someone that he or she is foolish.
6. How to encourage someone who has given up on life.
7. How to plead with a man to stay with his wife.
8. How to give comfort to a woman whose husband just left her.
9. How to give comfort to a mother who just suffered a miscarriage.
10. How to navigate the IRS tax code for pastors.
11. How to chair an elders’ meeting.
12. How to organize and manage a church budget.
13. How to balance church responsibilities with family life.
14. How to do a wedding and a funeral.
15. How to administer the Lord’s Supper.
16. How to best use technology for the sake of the kingdom.
17. How to shield my kids from the pressures of being a PK.

a carrie underwood parody...

i saw this video this morning and actually LOL-ed (for those who are text-talk illiterate, that means laughed out loud) when i saw this video here. it's a pastor's wife's parody to the tune of carrie underwood song, think before he cheats.

Monday, March 16, 2009

cavities and community

here is a recent blog from one of the pastors at my church, josh patterson:

I have a good friend who just went to the dentist and has nine cavities. At one time? Nine? I asked my friend, “Do you brush with sugar?” How is this possible? I thought it had to be some kind of record. But, my friend informed me that we have another mutual friend who had 13 cavities in one visit. This was not as shocking to me because this friend is from Louisiana and, well, just the fact that there are 13 teeth in the first place is something noteworthy.

The cavity scandal generated a lot of questions for me. I began polling people to better understand this mystery, and, hopefully to find the key to cavity free teeth. Did you have your teeth sealed at the dentist? Most had. I asked if people brushed. Most do (at least once a day). Do you floss? Most don’t (count me in the “no” category). In general most people had their teeth sealed, brushed daily and flossed intermittently. Isn’t this the formula we are supposed to follow? Close. The last piece of the puzzle is a regular trip to the dentist. And, interestingly enough, an infrequent visit to the dentist was the common denominator in my lackluster research.

What does this have to do with anything? Apparently, a lot. A visit to the dentist is a preventative measure. It gives us the opportunity to catch something early. It allows us the chance to have someone else assess the situation and help. My friends who are cavity laden have waited years between a visit to the dentist (they had dental insurance the whole time). This has led me to think about the parallel to my own life. Neglecting checkups from others is costly.

If I live in isolation, never open up and let someone else check out what’s going on, then I run the risk of rotting out. I might be doing some of the “prescribed” measures, but I can’t do these alone. They are insufficient in isolation and are most effective in community. Cavities are one thing, but rotting your heart is a whole new issue. Who knew that cavities and community had some parallels?

Saturday, March 14, 2009

sideshow in downtown denton

what i thought was going to be a nice low-key evening at home... turned into one of the weirdest experiences of my life. my friends susan and dale called to see if i wanted to join them for dinner. even though i had already eaten, i gladly accepted the invitation to hangout with them before they leave town for spring break tomorrow. after enjoying a meal and conversation at el guapo's mexican restaurant, we headed to downtown denton to go to a used book store. the book store was closed... but we found this guy hanging out on the square (this video is of him playing tonight, whoever posted it was on top of things! i've only been home about 20 minutes):

of course, we got sucked in and ended up watching the majority of his show. it was quite the experience... we all agreed, we'd never be the same again.

shallow by brock gill

the following is a post from brock gill's blog:
in the past decade there has been a trend in many churches. i have seen that many churches have tried to become more cool, cute, or trendy. much of this has to do with competing with the next church to keep or attract members. i have heard countless people tell me stories of how their church or the church down the road has dumbed it down to try and reach people. some call it “seeker sensitive” and others call it “being relevant”. i am afraid that our attempts to be cool or seeker friendly or whatever have backfired.(click here to read more about this)

i dont want you to hear me say that churches that remained traditional are the ones who are doing it right. i think there are many traditional churches who are guilty of the same problem but in a different way. i also dont want you to hear me say that all churches who have become progressive or modern are doing it wrong. my point is this. in our attempts to become more hip and cool we have become very shallow. the church thought that if we simplify the message and cookie cut the service and play a fun video then unchurched people will think we are cool and want to join the faith. what began for some as good intentions may actually be the absolute wrong thing to do.

here is why. young people today are dealing with real life issues. they do not want a shallow, basic, 1-2-3 sermon to make all their problems go away. they want real answers to real problems. they are far more complex than we give them credit for. they are far more hungry than we even realize. teenagers and college students are looking for the answer. they havent seen it work for their parents. they havent seen it work in our government. they havent seen it work in hollywood. and they are not finding it at church.

we are shallow and misinformed about our young people in america. are you offended that i am blasting the church? ok good. now i have your attention. do your own survey of 20 somethings in your city. most teenagers leave church when they graduate. some say 70% and some say as many as 86% of all teenagers who attend church drop out and do not return to church as soon as they graduate high school. if you survey teenagers in your own youth group today you will find that almost none of them even know basic christian doctrine. they do not even know the basics. most of them cant even tell you a biblical answer for salvation. most teenagers cannot even quote more than 3 verses from the bible. sad? very sad.

we have become so shallow and dont even realize it. we think we are having good services on sundays but the truth is, that is all they are, services. and to tell you the truth, most people are bored out of their minds. maybe its time for us to seek the face of God and quit playing church. maybe we need to rethink our entire approach.

what about you? what do you think?

now if you are a pastor and want to know how to deal with this issue i have something you might find helpful. click here.

and now to explain myself. the above post hasnt been written because i hate the church. the opposite is true. i have a tremendous burden for the thousands of young people i encounter each week across this country. i care about people. i want to see people find the answer. im just afraid that we are not giving it to them. my hope is that pastors, leaders, and believers everywhere will open their eyes to a huge problem. my goal is for you to start dialogue with people in your community. i am not picking a fight. i dont want you to pick a fight with anyone else. we just need to act.


so what do you (readers) think about his post? i, personally... completely agree.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009


this is hilarious. being a worship leader and a techie... i can appreciate all sides represented here.

to view the entire video, go to: http://confessionsvideo.com/.

religion survey

click on image to make it larger.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

day off with the dewoodys

i spent my day off with my friends, susan and dale. susan blogged about our adventures during lunch.

click here to read about a little boy that still has us laughing.

Friday, March 6, 2009

who is your God?

as i sit on here on my couch, i can't help but think through this past week. not only am i a planner, i'm an analyzer. which means, i think ahead... and i think backwards. both are dangerous. so as i wade through last week i see many ways that the events have revealed my God to me.

who is your God?

let me tell you about mine.
  • my God is a healer. a close family friend... so close we call them family... has been fighting brain cancer. no one has ever survived it. he's lived longer than he should. he went in for an MRI this week... and they couldn't find any sign of it. my God heals. while we don't know the future of this situation, i know that in this moment, God's love is more real then ever.
  • my God is my sustainer. i'm tired. i've had a crazy past few months... actually, make that a crazy past few years. and yet when i don't know where strength will come from, He provides.
  • my God draws people to Him. i see this every day, even when i'm not looking.
  • my God gives. i have people in my life that love and support me. i don't deserve them.
  • my God forgives me, which gives me the desire to change.
  • my God loves. He loves me in-spite of me.
there's so much more that i could write. my words will never be enough to describe my.

so i ask you again, who is your God?

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

mexico city mission trip - may 14-21, 2009

here is a copy of the fundraising letter i am sending out for our mission trip in may:

I am so excited to let you know about a mission trip that God has given me the opportunity to co‐lead. The Baptist Student Ministries at the University of North Texas (Denton) and at Texas State University (San Marcos) will be partnering with Vida Nueva Baptist Church in Mexico City to do evangelism on the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) campus. We will be going to Mexico City as a Special Impact Team through Go Now Missions (www.gonowmissions.com).

Vida Nueva is located on the university campus and their main focus is to evangelize and disciple students. Our goal is to help strengthen the ministry that Vida Nueva has on the college campus as well as working with churches partnered with the Baptist Convention of Mexico City as they reach out to students. We will be providing conversation partners for students who want to practice English, helping teach ESL (English as a second language) classes, as well as participating in campus outreach events. UNAM is a public university that has over 286,500 students, many of which are studying internationally. The opportunity to serve on such a large and unique campus allows us to literally minister to the entire world from
one location.

I am writing you to ask you to pray for us as we prepare and while we are there. Also, to keep the cost of the trip low for the UNT students going (pictured above), we want them to only have to cover the cost of their flight. Which means that collectively we need to raise the $2500 needed to cover the remainder of the trip costs (lodging, food, transportation and insurance). Some local churches have provided service opportunities for donations, and we are hoping to find 100 people who can give $20 each. If you feel God is leading you to give, please make checks payable to UNT BSM and mail to PO Box 310890, Denton, TX 76203 by May 1st. Donations are tax deducible and we will mail you a receipt.

I am so excited to see how God provides as we prepare, and how He moves through the trip as we serve. We will update a blog (http://missionmexicocity.tumblr.com/) daily so that you can see what God is doing and know how to pray for us while we are there.


if you, my blog family, would like to contribute that would be wonderful. we trust that God will provide all that we need as we prepare and go.