28 March 2008

Caitlyn Update

Caitlyn came thru the surgery just fine this morning. She was tired most of today and she has boughts of irritability between longer periods of happiness. Thank you for your prayers! We should be in church on Sunday and no one will probably know she was in the hospital - at least visually.

27 March 2008

Prayers for Caitlyn

Tomorrow morning (around 9:15am) Caitlyn will be undergoing surgery at Children's Medical Center in order to replace her tubes and remove her adenoids. Please be in prayer for her and her parents.

Here she is enjoying the chips at On The Border for Easter lunch.

21 March 2008

Kay the Brave

Before I preached last night I had the honor of spending some time in the home of a member of one of my previous churches. She has terminal cancer and the doctors are giving her a generous six months to live. She had made the decision to donate her body to science so that doctors and medical researchers can find out more about her cancer ... and perhaps help the next person who receives the same diagnosis she did. Even in death she is thinking of other people.

As I sat on her couch, listening to stories of trips she had taken and memories of times with her family, I knew that she has lived her life well and she is ready to meet Jesus on the other side of life. She is not coming to the end of her life with regret. She is coming to the end of her life knowing that she loved Jesus more and more everyday ... she loved her family more and more everyday ... and she is not afraid.

I listened as her husband and one of her daughters shared story after story about her life and to see the life in a woman riddled with disease was just amazing. In spite of the terrible diagnosis and her short time left to be with her family, she was laughing, remembering, and enjoying every moment.

Kay, if you ever read this, I want you to know that it was a privilege to sit with you and your family yesterday. It is clear how much you love God and love the people around you and how much they love you. I know that you will be missed when you are gone, but I believe that your memory will live on for a long time - even in the heart of this young preacher kid! I pray for your comfort as you treasure each moment with Michael and the kids. You are truly a special person! God bless.

Maundy Thursday Reflections

I enjoyed preaching about John 13 last night at our Maundy Thursday service, but what really got me going was washing feet at one of our experiential stations. I probably washed 12-15 people's feet last night, but when my mom came and sat down in the chair I looked up and saw that she was misty-eyed and I had to quickly look away before I lost it.

It was humbling and gratifying to kneel down and wash the feet of various members of Trietsch. It was truly an experience I will never forget. To look into the eyes of a child and challenge them to live as Christ has called them to live was incredible. I would do it again in a heartbeat!

19 March 2008

DV Giveaway

The guys over at Deadly Viper are giving away the audiobook of Deadly Viper Character Assassins for FREE! Get your copy here before they come to their senses and pull the file!

New Visitors to CTM

I started tracking the stats on my site at the end of February (mostly because I didn't know how before) thanks to Google Analytics. Since then I have noticed that I am fairly popular in North Texas (big surprise!), but I have also had visitors from as far away as Malaysia and South Africa.

Also, my first Canadian visitor (since I started tracking) came by on Sunday! Woo hoo, eh!

18 March 2008

Important News

OK, now that it is official news, I can blog about it...

I have received a new appointment effective June 2008. I will be the new Pastor at University UMC in Wichita Falls, TX. Debbie and I are very excited about this opportunity (as is the church) and I hope to lead this congregation to new and vital ministry within the WF community.

Please pray for Debbie and I as we begin the moving process. Please pray specifically for:
  • Dean - seeking the heart of God to cast vision for a new congregation
  • Dean - avoiding "unplugging" from Trietsch between now and June 1
  • Dean - preparing my heart and schedule for weekly preaching
  • Debbie - decisions about future employment (continue working or stay home)
  • Debbie - planning/organizing the move
  • Debbie & Dean - possibly maintaining two households over the summer
  • Debbie & Dean - possibilities for daycare/MDO for Caitlyn in WF
  • Debbie & Dean - communication about all things related to this new appointment
  • Debbie & Dean - seeking the heart of God for our shared ministry at University

I will post more about this over the next few weeks, but for now, your prayers are the most precious things for us.

11 March 2008

Snow Business

Last week was a crazy weather week here in north Texas, but we survived no worse for the wear. One of those days (Monday) our house had about 3 inches of snow covering the ground so we decided to spend a few minutes playing before bathtime. Caitlyn really enjoyed it...I tried not to teach her how to eat snow, but it just happened...

Yes, those are Target bags on her feet...don't ask!

07 March 2008

Friday Brain Dump - 3/7

Again, lots of things on my mind that don't have much to do with each other, but I need to vent them anyway.

  • Snow...and lots of it! Texas has some of the craziest weather I have ever experienced. I am just waiting for the day when we can decide what season we want to be in for more that 36 hours. It snowed Monday night, was 70+ on Wednesday and now we have more snow on the ground. Yikes!
  • Mark Beeson's thoughts on waiting were very inspiring...perhaps I won't feel so bad next time I am on time for a meeting and others make me wait.
  • Seth Godin's comments on focus in business (church leaders read: the church) challenged me to think long and hard about what "extras" we offer at Trietsch
  • This is just FUNNY!!

Here's to a good weekend!

Polar Opposite Thoughts

I saw this video yesterday and it reminded me why I got out of youth ministry. I think you will agree that I made the right decision.

I just read this article on leading discussion in Bible studies and it reminded me that I need to be a student of the Word just as much (if not more) as I need to be a student of world. Plus, his one-liner to stop a conversation-hogger is kinda funny.

06 March 2008

A bishop that reads the Bible??

I am always inspired when a UMC Bishop is willing to share about his/her spiritual journey. Bishop Max Whitfield is one of those bishops. He shared his thoughts in his conference newspaper and Everyday Theology reprinted here for consideration in the blogosphere. Take a look and see what you think.

HT: sheyduck

05 March 2008

Missionaries We Love

Debbie and I have actively supported Benjamin and Amanda for a number of years, but they have just recently been able to complete their fundraising and make the journey across the ocean to begin their ministry in France.

Please take a moment to read about them on their blog and pray about financially supporting them as they serve Jesus outside of Paris. (Email me and I'll let you know the secret to getting into their site.)

Prayers Please

Please pray for me this afternoon. I am not sure when you will read this post, but I am going to a very important meeting this evening and I need mucho prayers for discernment and wisdom.

04 March 2008

Death to Musicians (sort of)

On Saturday the girls and I went to have lunch at Potbelly Sandwiches. While we were enjoying the delicious eats, a young carrot-topped guitar player stepped up to the microphone and started jamming on his axe. I wouldn't have paid much attention to the guy, but Caitlyn wanted to watch him play his guitar (complete with her making guitar strumming motions). For the first song, she had Deb hold her as she stared at him making music for the crowd eating their weekend lunch. For the second and third song, she wanted me to hold her as she made "goo-goo eyes" at the red-haired musician.

I must say that this dad had some bad thoughts about his daughter running away from home with some guitar-toting, dirt-poor musician breaking the heart of her father and crushing his dreams for his daughter...

I didn't cry, but I made sure that we exited the restaurant quickly...bad thoughts abounded as I placed Caitlyn in her car seat...I had to apologize to her later...