My One Year Anniversary!!

I have a year under my belt in blogging.  Yesterday was the day!  I was so slammed with STUFF, I didn’t even notice the day going by.  I appreciate all of you this year who have contributed either through helping me to create the story or commenting.  THANKS.

So, I want to have some fun.  Shoot straight with me and I promise not to put it up on the big screen in the worship center, but what was the first real ROCK N’ ROLL or COUNTRY concert that you went to or that was the most memorable in your life.  I can’t wait to see the results. 

Mine was THREE DOG NIGHT.  Big surprise, huh?

Sunday at the Z

OK, I’m going to by pass the set list for last week and this week just for time reasons.  But, I would like to tell about our new guitar player.  Today we had Jason Davis on acoustic guitar and he soloed before the message and did an invitational song in both services.   He is awesome!!  Good for us!!

Thanks for jumping in there today jason.

Dr. Henry Cloud’s book

How to Go to the Next Level--And Take Others With You

9Things a Leader Must Do – is a book that I picked up at a small group leaders conference at Willow Creek Church in Chicago a few months ago.  Henry Cloud was there and assists with developing leadership (discipleship) at Willow as well as being an author and radio show host.  This little book is jam packed, although a quick read.  A couple of my friends have had positive things to say about the book also, so I thought I would at least list the main points.  Maybe we’ll come back in depth on a couple of them later.

9Things a Leader Must Do

  1. Explore their deep hearts and invest in their inner desires and drives.
  2. Do not allow negative things to take up space in their lives
  3. Evaluate their decisions in the present based on how they will affect the future.
  4. Continually ask themselves, “What can I do to make this situation better?”
  5. Achieve big goals by taking small steps over time.
  6. Develop the ability to hate the right things well.
  7. Give back better than they are given.
  8. Do not strive to be or appear more than they really are.
  9. Do not make decisions based on the fear of other people’s reactions.

I am continually working on several of these, but I did take away some great applications from this book.  I would recommend it highly. 

Determine to be a leader where you are and where you are going to be, there are plenty of folks doing nothing to make a difference.  Follow the greatest leader of all, Jesus.

Worship Jig

Worship set:

Awesome Is The Lord Most High – Chris Tomlin

My Savior, My God – Aaron Shust

Here I Am To Worship – Tim Hughes

I Stand Amazed In The Presence (How Marvelous) – North Point version

Lora and Skipp Gay joined the worship team today and it was awesome!!  They always do a great job and it gives people a break from the same old face.  The only thing is…I need to start playing some acoustic when I have others lead.  I would love to stand in the background and just play sometime.

God is awesome and Jesus rules!  I am so blessed to know my God and be rescued from death and hell.  I praise Jesus for the love He and God, my Father have for me.

Worship Thoughts

As a worship leader my goal is to lead in a way that never bores people to death, but excites them for the Lord all the way to eternal life in heaven.  I am monitoring that always and changing whenever needed. 

First of all, who is worship for?  God our Father is the only answer.  How can we worship Him?  In many ways.  In our modern day there is too often a conflict with styles, volumes and other preferences.  When this conflict exists then the worship is about the preferences and not about Jesus or God, the father. 

I am forty years old and I am at least half way through this life on earth.  I can be an influence on the generations to come and it will be for GOD, not preferences.  When I am 70 I will accept the styles of the day because I want others to be drawn to Jesus regardless of what I like.  Life is too short to demand that those without Christ can only worship by the standards that I prefer.

That being said, I have come to believe that God is not sitting in heaven comparing all the hymn writers to the progressive or contemporary writers of today.  Likewise, I don’t think God is doing a seniority contest against the songwriters of today to those of yesterday or tomorrow.  When we arrive in heaven, I can’t believe that Jesus is going to look at us and ask, “Traditional, english, contemporary, spanish, progressive, japanese, or other?  And, the list goes on.  It’s NOT about us, but HIM! 

The message is this and it doesn’t get simpler:

You and I deserve death, hell and a life seperated from a Holy God because of our sin.  But the good news is that God has rescued us by giving His own Son, Jesus to pay the price for all those sins.  If we believe and accept this truth we can now be forgiven and spend a life eternally (forever, and ever, and ever) with the LORD OF ALL!!!! 

So……………………..LET’S WORSHIP!!!!   It’s not about the preference or music.

(See John 3:16, the most straightforward words in the Bible for how to understand the love that the Lord has for you.)

How Far Is Heaven?

One breath, that’s how far heaven is.

My grandmother, Mattie Kate Barnes went to live with the King of Kings and the God of the universe a few hours ago.  She was 95.  This week she had some problems and shortness of breath and so they admitted her to the hospital this morning, not long after she “passed peacefully” as my Dad put it.

A few things that come to mind:

I think she may have been one of the sweetest people I’ve ever known.  I mean, I know she was.  She and only a handful of others have I ever met in my life to be as kind and sweet.  I can’t remember ever going to see her and a huge smile with eyes wide with anticipation to see you and huge hugs always.

Mother Barnes taught me to spell BARNES when I was five, I remember that.  She had the best TEA CAKES I’ve ever had and all of the family would fight you for them.  They were not too sweet, but great texture and consistent.  Her chicken stew was phenomenal.  You were going to eat something before you left her house, which was never a problem for me.  Her house was always clean as a whistle.

Although I came into the family a little differently than the other grandchildren she loved me the same and made sure I knew it.  She didn’t have the most materially, but she is one of the richest people I’ve ever known.  I love her very much.

We’ll all see you before too long Mother Barnes.  If they didn’t have TEA CAKES southern style in heaven, they do now.

 

ALOOOOOO-HA!

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Yes!  I am back from my trip from Hawaii.  It does cost a ton, but yes I am back from Hawaii.  I have had several of our seniors from the church welcome me back and want to know how the trip was.  I just keep telling them how great it really was.  Awesome!!!!! to tell the truth!!!!!  Someone asked me this morning how many days I was gone and I told them seven.  Just in case anyone else was wondering, I spent a lot of money and had the best time you could have!!!  WOW!!!

Actually, it amazed me that they were all so interested, but I bet I have a couple hundred pictures from the trip if anyone would like to see them.

Oh and by the way………………….I took the trip in Spring of 1993, fifteen years ago. 

NOT LAST WEEKEND!!!! 

For anyone who needs to know, March 30th was my youngest son’s birthday and I took the day off.  We were in Anderson, SC (Hawaii like, 38 degrees, 20 mph winds and rain)  for one day and had a great time!

Whoever started the Hawaii rumor….it was true, but it was 15 years ago when I worked for a software company near Atlanta.

So there you go!