Links I Like

Links I Like is a collection of blogs, articles and books I’ve come across recently and thought they were worth sharing. Click here for past Links I Like.

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Ron Edmondson on 7 suggestions for an effective Easter.

This is an “all hands on deck” Sunday. Plan every detail you possibly can. Plan for and expect excellence. It’s that important. Hopefully by now you have already started talking about it, but people need to know the importance you are placing on the day. Make it a big deal, because it is a big deal.

Forbes ranks the 9 toughest leadership roles. Interesting where pastor and stay-at-home mom landed.

Tim Elmore on The different types of parents and how they affect their kids.

Tragically, this is often the case for many of us.  Instead of learning from our parent’s shortcomings, we echo them in our parenting. The opposite can also be true–in an effort to learn from our parent’s mistakes, we can swing the pendulum too far and commit the opposite error.  Instead of being passive, we smother (or vice versa).

7 reasons preachers should read fiction.

Imagination is a muscle. It needs to be exercised. Unlike movies, books make you use that imagination. When I think of Charles Spurgeon or Jonathan Edwards – what strikes me about their preaching is their vivid imagination.

Sutton Turner on How an executive pastor frees up a lead pastor.

One of the easiest ways an executive pastor can complement the lead pastor is by doing the things the lead pastor isn’t gifted to do. The lead pastor needs to do the things that only he can do, and the executive pastor needs to do the things that he and the lead pastor can both do.

5 reasons why one Christian teen didn’t rebel. Super helpful for parents.

My parents never encouraged any idea of teenage-hood rebellion. They never joked about us rolling our eyes, acting exasperated, or having attitude at all. Rather, they actually made us think that teenagers and the whole rebellion process was stupid and unnecessary. I always figured that I would grow up straight from child to adult, with no “silly teenage stage” in-between. You may think that this is no fun, or that kids need their time to be silly and make mistakes.

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This Summer at Revolution

Summer is right around the corner and this summer at Revolution is going to be an amazing season. Here are some things to mark on your calendar and be aware of:
  • On June 5th, we will end our 22 week series through the book of Nehemiah. This has been an amazing journey and God has done so much in our church during this series.
  • On June 12th, we will join with almost 1,000 other churches around the world for One Prayer 2010. We will be looking at what makes the church unstoppable in our world and how God works through us.
  • July 12 – 16 we will be having our first ever day camp. This will be a great opportunity, not only for the kids in our church, but as we reach out to the community around us. If you hurry up and sign up, you get a free shirt. You can sign up here. If you are interested in helping before the day camp as we gear up or during the week of day camp, contact Jennifer Ingram.
  • July 17th is our first night at 22nd St. Baptist Church. In case you haven’t heard, we are moving!
  • July 17th is also our next big day. Be praying about who you can invite to Revolution on our first night at 22nd St. Baptist Church.
  • We are also kicking off a brand new series on July 17th called The Perfect Kid. We will be looking at what scripture says about family and parenting, we will also be looking at the idea that we are children of God and what He calls us to become (so this series is not just for parents).

So an action packed few months. Be praying that the momentum God has given us would continue through the summer and that we would gain even more traction and momentum as we move in July.

As I keep saying:  our best days are ahead of us.

Working Ahead (Upcoming Sermons at Revolution)

We are getting close to the end of our series on Nehemiah, so I am starting to work on an upcoming series. This is one of my favorite parts of preaching, laying out and prepping for a series.

To coincide with our day camp and our move to 22nd St., we are having a big day on July 17th. We will also be kicking off a brand new series that night called The Perfect Kid. Each week, we will look at what the Bible has to say about parenting and family, but we will also look each week at the fact that we are children of God and how God as our Father parents us. I think it will be pretty eye opening for many people.

There are a lot of books out there on parenting, but here are some that are on my reading list for the series:

Revolution is Moving

In my sermon tonight, I announced Revolution’s next step.

Over the last few months, we have seen God grow us in incredible ways. We have seen more people start following Jesus and get baptized in that time than ever in our church. We have seen all our ministries (Planet Rev and Rev Up) grow at incredible rates. Right now, 1/3 of our church are in those ministries(infants through 12 grade).

A few months ago, we were approached by 22nd St. Baptist Church about the possibility of moving there to meet as a church. As we talked with them, prayed about it as leaders, weighed the options, all signs pointed that we needed to move.

The facility is larger (especially for kids and students), we are good friends with the leaders, and it is cheaper (almost half as much as we are paying in rent right now).

Mt. View (where we currently meet) has been an incredible ministry partner for us. Pastor David and his team have been gracious and incredibly kingdom minded and helpful. Our church would have had a very difficult time getting off the ground without them. I cannot say enough how grateful I am for them.

The decision boiled down to being able to have a larger space. One of the things I talked about tonight has been our desire to be prepared for what God wants to do. That God sends people to churches who are ready for them and God uses people who are ready to be used. While we could grow a little more at Mt. View, to fully get to where we believe God wants us, we need to have more space.

One of our philosophies has been to think and act like we are twice our size. Right now, that means we need to think and act like we are a church of 250 – 300. You need to think that way so you can get there.

Our plan right now is to be meeting at 22nd St. on July 17th. We will still do day camp (our VBS) at Mt. View. Our next big day on July 17th as we kick off our series The Perfect Kid.

If, after listening to the sermon you still have questions, don’t hesitate to email me.

This Weekend: The God Who Reaches

Our big day this past Saturday was a huge success. We saw God do some amazing things. We had 160 people and 7 people made a first time decision to start following Jesus. How cool is that! My prayer since Saturday is that what we experienced Saturday would not be a onetime thing, but something that God would continue to do in our midst. I am excited and humbled how many of you took huge steps in inviting friends and family members this past weekend. Let’s keep the momentum going and see what God is going to do this weekend.

Saturday, we will continue our series on Nehemiah by looking at Nehemiah 9:1 – 37. We will be looking at the how prayer works. Nehemiah 9 is the longest recorded prayer in the Old Testament, so there is a lot we can learn on the topic of prayer from it. Is there a formula to prayer? Does God want to hear from us in prayer? Does we control God when it comes to prayer or does prayer change God’s mind?

These are just some of the things we will be looking at this weekend.

If you brought someone this past Saturday, be sure to reach out them this week and invite them back. A person’s decision to come back a second time is largely based on an invite back, so make sure to invite them back.

Remember, we meet at 5pm at 410 S. Pantano Rd.

See you then.

Easter at Revolution

I just got back from meeting with the staff team of Revolution. It was an exciting and intense meeting as we are less than 2 days from our big day. This easily is the most excited, the most buzz and the most stress our team has been under since we launched.

Which is a good thing. I can’t wait to see what happens this weekend.

If you’d like to pray with us, here are some things you can pray for:

  • Pray for the protection of all our leaders and their families over the next 2 days/nights.
  • Pray that we will see at least 150 people on Saturday night.
  • Pray for those who will be invited, that they will say yes.
  • Pray for those who will do the inviting, that they would have courage to do so.
  • Pray that we would see many accept Jesus and take that step of faith and start following Jesus.
  • Pray for all the details associated with the sermon, music, technology and the BBQ that is happening after the service.
  • Pray for the unity and relationships of all the leaders who will be working together to pull everything off.
  • Pray that I would be able to communicate hope as I preach on the question, “What do you do when life seems out of control?”

This Weekend: Partying that Provokes

Revolution’s BIG DAY is less than 3 days away. Are you ready? Our goal for the night is 150. We have been praying and planning this day for weeks and I can’t wait to see what God is going to do.

We’ll be looking at a very simple questions this week, one that many ask on a regular basis, “What do you do when life seems out of control?” It is going to be a powerful night as we look at who is really in control of our lives, what that means, how that answers other questions when it comes to happiness, pain and suffering.

After the service, we’ll be having a BBQ Throwdown and hanging together as a community. When I say you don’t want to miss Saturday, I am not kidding.

So, do whatever you have to do to get to Revolution this Saturday night (and don’t forget to bring a friend with you)! To use an e-vite, just go here.

Remember, we meet at 5pm at 410 S. Pantano Rd.

See you then.

This Weekend: Air War & Ground War

Saturday, we begin the second half of our series on the book of Nehemiah. The first half dealt with the rebuilding of the city and its wall. The second half of the book (chapters 8 – 13) deals with the church starting in the city of Jerusalem. We’ll look at what a church is supposed to be, what practices does a church practice, what does community look like, why be a part of a church.

This Saturday, we’ll be looking at why the Bible is so important. At Revolution, the foundation of everything is the scripture, it is the authority for our lives as followers of Jesus. But why? What makes the Bible special or different from other religious texts?

So, do whatever you have to do to get to Revolution this Saturday night (and don’t forget to bring a friend with you)!

Remember, we meet at 5pm at 410 S. Pantano Rd.

And don’t forget about our next big day, April 3rd. You are not going to want to miss Easter Weekend at Revolution the opportunity to bring someone with you!

See you then.