Monday, November 30, 2009

4 Gifts

Yesterday at Hub City we started talking about the reason for the season. We focused on Giving. I laid out our church's giving plan for this Christmas season. Here's a recap:

Give the gift of toys. We're going to be gathering unwrapped toys to give away to kids at The Haven. We'll collect the toys on December 13. Let's overwhelm The Haven with toys this Christmas.

Give the gift of an offering. We're calling it The Holly Jolly Christmas Offering. This is a gift to the church and the community. First, 25 cents of every dollar that comes in is going to be given away to Total Ministries. Second, we're going to use the rest of the money to do some things that we've been wanting to do for a while, but haven't had the resources to do... things like signs and lighting and decoration to make our Gathering more appealing.

Give the gift of an invitation. This is a gift to your friends, coworkers and acquaintances. We honestly believe that we have something worth being a part of at Hub City. But the only way that people will be a part is if we invite them. We challenged everyone to invite 5 people per week to our gathering by giving out 5 postcards. (BTW: I'm already down to 4 for this week. I invited the girl who cut my hair... after I gave her a good tip.)

Give the gift of focus. This is a gift to yourself. Instead of being consumed with the stress of Christmas, what if instead, we spent time every day focusing on Jesus in his word? That's the challenge of this gift. We gave out a reading plan. Pick one up next week or email me and I'll email you one back.

That's the plan. Here's my question for you: How are you going to participate?

Saturday, November 28, 2009

The Kingdom of God

The commentary in today's Herald-Journal does a great job of talking about something that few of us understand. Your Kingdom come!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Great pre-Thanksgiving reads

Mark Batterson had two great posts. You can read them here and here. I think that might become a phrase we start using in my home.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Don't read, it might make you mad

A very interesting, and if you read the comments, provocative article.

It's the potential

I am really excited about the series that we're starting this Sunday. It's titled, The Reason. Most of the time we hear Christians say, "Jesus is the reason for the season." But nobody really acts that way. And I've always wondered, Is that really true. Well, it's partially true, but you'll have to come to the series to find out why I say that.

What I'm really excited about, though, is that we're going to be doing some things as a church this Christmas that are going to make a big difference in some people's lives. And I think that being a part of Hub City this year will make a big difference in our lives.

There is huge potential. And that's what I'm excited about. I can't wait for Sunday.

BTW: This is a great series to invite people to. People are more likely to come to church during the Christmas season then any other time of the year.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Read this

Jaimee had a great post here that you need to read.


I feel like I've been letting my 4 loyal readers down. Posts were almost non-existent last week. What's wrong with me? Please accept my heartfelt apologies. I'll try and do better.

Monday, November 16, 2009


One of the verses I used in yesterday's talk was Galatians 6:2. Read it.

Something I didn't say, but wanted to mention is that the responsibility for carrying each other's burdens lies on the one without the burden, or with the less burden. That person needs to be on the lookout for burdened people. And when they see a burden they need to step in and carry it.

People who are burdened or hurting shouldn't have to go out of their way to find help. We should be going out of our way to help them.

I just found that interesting. It's not normally how we work, but according to Paul, it should be.

Friday, November 13, 2009

I'm in...

"This is the kind of church and kingdom I want to be a part of - a band of people who are messy, have addictions and shortcomings, make mistakes, get rejected, and are screwed up, but are so fully aware of the Master's grace and love for them in spite of who they are or will be someday; people who embrace discomfort knowing there is so much to be gained for all of us and for all of our churches." - Dave Gibbons

Thursday, November 12, 2009

What is going on?!?!?!

If you're my facebook friend then you may have already heard about Levi's "incedent" today at pre-school. He was told by his teacher not to say the word "penis" at school, but to just say that at home. You've got to worry about those preacher kids.

Then, on the way to school this AM, Nathan and Matthew asked Liz what "Jackass" and "Ass" meant. Supposedly, the first word was on Tom and Jerry, and the second word is in C.S. Lewis' The Last Battle (which Nathan and I are reading together). Liz informed them that both words, in those contexts, meant "donkey." But that they usually were bad words and they didn't need to say them.

You know what this means, don't you? It's time for "the talk." It's time for me to sit down with Nathan and go through all the cuss words with him, tell him what they mean, and why he doesn't need to use them.

I know what some of you are thinking, "But you're a pastor. You can't say those words." Where would you rather your kid learn what's the right and wrong thing to say? I'd rather them learn it from me than the kids at school.

Another benefit is that he'll know that I know... and knowing's half the battle.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

God wants you happy... NOT

Ok, so that's kind of a harsh title, but it's what we talked about this past Sunday. You can read the transcript here.

But in today's reading from the book of Jeremiah, I see a guy who is clearly depressed. He did exactly what God had called him to do and everybody hated him for it.

Sometimes being obedient to God doesn't lead to where we think it should. You would think that being obedient to God should result in good things, in happiness, in reward. And while that happens sometimes, it's not always the case. I think Jeremiah is a great illustration of that.

But he remained faithful and obedient to what God had told him to do. When things aren't going our way, or when they don't turn out like we think they should turn out, do we press on in obedience? Jeremiah is a great model for all of us.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

We have a dream...

At our weekly, Mickey D's staff meeting I asked Josh and Frankie to dream a little... not day dream... but dream-dream. Here's what I asked:

What would you like to see Hub City look like in 6 months? In one year?

Nothing was off limits. Dreams should be big. They should be audacious. They should be God sized.

We shared some pretty big dreams... things that will only happen if God shows up.

Now we're thinking through some plans to partner with God to turn the dreams into reality. But it's going to take some serious divine intervention. And we want to make sure that it's God's will that's done and not ours. Hub City is His church.

Let me ask you, how would you answer that question? I'd love to hear your dreams for Hub City. I'll share some of our dreams over the next few weeks, and I may include some of yours, so comment away. We want to hear from you!

Monday, November 09, 2009

Laughter and food

I had a great time last night with my Hub Group. We did a little pot-luck supper. We ate way too much. It was all good.

But the best part was laughing together.

Something about laughing together brings down walls and fertilizes relationships.

I'm so thankful for the people in my group. I see God at work in each of their lives. I see them growing as disciples.

If you're a part of Hub City, but not in a Hub Group, then what are you waiting on. I promise, you're missing out.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

What I want for Christmas

I just found out Switchfoot is coming to Asheville on December 4. It will be a great show. Should I go? Hmmm? Tix are $20.

Just so you know, they are my favorite band. Their new album launches 11/10/09. Holy smokes Batman, that's in three days!

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Did you know?

This Sunday is Orphan Sunday. Did you know that there are 143 million orphans in the world. This should not be. We're going to spend a few minute praying about this issue on Sunday. Just wanted to give you a heads up. You can find out more here.

A great reminder

While this post by Tim Stevens isn't a perfect fit with our discipleship process, I think he clearly articulates some important stuff that we forget. He explains what the Sunday worship gathering is all about and that those who just come on Sunday aren't really a part of the church, just a part of the crowd. Being the church, being a part of the church, is more than a Sunday thing.

Sundays are important, but they aren't the most important thing we do. Since our mission is to make disciples who make disciples we place a priority on the environment where this is most likely to happen... which isn't a Sunday worship gathering. The environment where discipleship happens is Hub Groups.

Are you connected to a Hub Group? If not, why not? What are you waiting on? Do you want to be a part of the crowd or a part of our church family?

Monday, November 02, 2009

Urban Legends - week 1

I just posted week 1 of Urban Legends here. I know you've been dying to know that.

I can't wait for next week's legend. It has the potential to mess some of you up.