Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Kansas Trip Highlights (January 2007)

1. Almost missing the flight out of BWI due to weather...we should of checked the weather before we left PA. But nooooooo...we got stuck in 8mph traffic on the beltway.

2. Econopark Service at BWI, they pick you up AT YOUR CAR, help load all your luggage with a SMILE, offer free BOTTLED WATER in their WARM van to everyone, help load out all your luggage with a SMILE, and all for $5.95 a day. Compare that with no pick-up, no luggage help, no water, no heat, no smile, at $8.00 a day for BWI's satellite parking. It's a no brainer.

3. Joshua (2 years old) sitting in his seat on the airplane with his seatbelt on with no crying for 2 hours. It was a post-Christmas miracle.

4. Observing two flight attendants descreatly pull up the pants of a gentleman who couldn't walk to his seat on the plane. I'll buy tickets on Southwest for years simply because these two attendants demonstrated love toward this gentleman. I know why there's a heart in the middle of the Southwest logo.

5. Lisa's side of the family was able to see our daughter Kayla for the first time ever. Priceless.

6. Trying to figure out how Lisa and I would watch two of our favorite TV shows when they were on at the same time. She's a 24 fan. I'm a Heroes fan. I have the gift of mercy. My wife...well, she watched 24.

7. Being introduced to a game on PS2 called "Guitar Hero 2" by my brother-in-law (the same one who burnt my back with a firecracker on the last trip).

8. Joshua attempting to play "Guitar Hero 2" with me. It's simply didn't work.

9. Uploading over 3 GIGS of information to an FTP site from my laptop at 16Kbps. It took 72 hours. Geesh!

10. The "you might be a redneck if..." calendar displayed on the exterior glass of a Kansas drive-thru bank. Only in Kansas.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Procrastination Sensation

OK, this one takes the cake. A procrastinator clock. You never know if it's running on time or 15 minutes late. The creator is a genius...I think. I'm sure some of my friends would appreciate me using this.

Monday, January 22, 2007

Amazing Grace Coming Feb 23

If you haven't heard about the major motion picture based on the creation of the hymn "Amazing Grace," you can check it out here ( First impressions - looks great.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Santa Claus Really DOES Exist

How far are we willing to go to reach "as many as possible" with the message of love and hope that God provides to mankind? We had to ask ourselves that very question two years ago when the idea was brought up to have Santa Claus (referred to as Satan Clause by some believers) in our North Pole waiting area. How could we bring in a secular icon as we try to point people to the real reason for Christmas?!?!? BUT WAIT! St. Nick was a real dude! That's right. He's REAL! It's amazing what Googling Santa provides you with. I had no idea that Satan really existed. For those of you who are skeptics, here is the story that we gave to each child how visited St. Nick at Grace during our walk-thru.

"Saint Nicholas was a real person! The story of Santa Claus began with a little boy named Nicholas. Nicholas was born in a far country called Turkey. Young Nicholas went to church to pray and worship often. He obeyed what Jesus told him to do in the Bible, which was to “sell what you own and give money to the poor.” Nicholas used all his money to help those who were sick and needed help. He tried to do this in secret so that no one would find out it was him who was giving gifts. Saint Nicholas was a real person who gave his life to serving God."

OK, cute story. And, yes, we've twisted St.Nick to be what he "is" today. However, now we have another delema…

What do we do with these two letters that two children brought to St.Nick at our walk-thru North Pole?!

Dear Santa, I want Baby alive, Bath robe, 12 dancing Princesses, talking Dora Set, Princess necklesses. [name withheld]

Dear Santa,
I would like a Bbgun and a Star wars Set and a Star wars LAgo II and a eye pod and a Sefon. [name withheld]

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

My New Ride at 88mph

Yes, that's a DeLorean! Yes, it's the time machine car from Back to the Future. Yes, it's in front of our house in Lititz. No, it's not our new set of wheels...but I couldn't help posting this picture of the DeLorean Time Machine Car in front of our house! How cool is that! We had the car as a part of the kick-off to our current message series on what the Bible says about the future at Grace Church (Lititz, PA).

A personal thank you to the Holler's for bringing the car to our house. Check out their site on their time car. Enjoy the pic!

Saturday, January 13, 2007

The Snow Ball Effect

The Snow Ball effect is simply MOMENTUM. Momentum is the product of the mass and velocity of an object. It can be an incredible, unstoppable force. Right now there is momentum at Grace Church (Lititz, PA) where I'm on staff as Worship Arts Director. What do I mean by momentum?

Here's what I mean:

There is a lot happening here (mass). There's lots of people coming...just about double over a year ago. There's lots of people taking next steps.

There is addition happening to the existing mass (mass added). These new people are taking next steps toward Christ. As a result, they move deeper into their relationship with God...and in turn invite others to join them. They are investing in, inviting, and including others.

Things are moving faster and faster (increasing velocity). Grass isn't growing under our feet. We are moving quickly to keep up in helping people take their next steps toward Christ. We sett up more chairs. We add staff. We help new people connect to God. We help existing people deepen their faith.

What did we do to create this effect? While I could give you many human answers - like slick promotion, innovative use of technology, creative biblical illustrations, and the like. But the real answer is because God allowed it. We don't generate momentum. It's ultimately God's snow ball effect.

Is the snow ball effect good? It is if you can:
  1. Keep up with the momentum, instead of drowing in momentum.
  2. Move with the momentum, instead of resisting the momentum.
  3. Prepare for future momentum, instead of stopping with present momentum.
Once you got it, how do you keep it? Except for what has already been revealed in scripture about the future (see current message series at Grace on this subject), humans can't predict the future. So if only God knows the future, we can only pray for wisdom from God to guide us. Specifically, we can ask God to show us how to best capture the opportunities that will allow us to be the most effective for His kingdom.

How about you? Do you like snow? Or do you prefer the sunny beach weather? It's easier to get a tan than to shovel snow. I don't know about you, but I'm praying for snow!

My Son's Phonetics Lesson

I'm so glad God knows my name. He knew my name even before I was born.

While in son recently recieved a lesson in phonetics from me in how to pronouce my brother's wife's name. Her name is Ayuna. Kinda funny.

Check out the video by clicking here.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

12 Hour Van Ride with Kids

Here is it! Our 2006 Christmas vacation highlights...

If you are stalking the Nelson's or simply want are some of the pictures.

1. The all-nighter van ride from PA to WI (Joshua watched DVDs until midnight, we are terrible parents)
2. Visiting the Apple store with my younger brother (link to pic)
3. Playing Worms World Party with my nephew and brother
4. Going on a date with my wife, we did something for him/her/us (Olive Garden for us, Target for her, Best Buy for me)
5. Christmas get together with entire family
6. Dad reading the Christmas story to the family before we opened gifts
7. Watching my dad and younger brother try to calm Kayla, pure entertainment
8. Making it from PA to KS in less time than Mapquest or Google Maps calculated, even with gas stops and feeding Kayla (probably no traffic thru Chicago on Christmas morning)
9. Making it to WI with having to pee only twice after drinking a 20oz Coke, 20oz Black Cherry Vanilla Coke, and a 20oz Dr. Pepper - it was a Christmas miracle
10. Attempting to read my email on my parent's 26kps dial-up connection, geeesh.