When Romances Flops

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Yesterday was Valentine’s Day and countless couples went out for a night of fun and time together.

The reality though is that for many couples, the night did not go how they planned. Maybe the food wasn’t good, the conversation didn’t flow, they didn’t connect or worse, they had a fight.

Maybe sex was less than amazing.

 

If you do date night enough, you will eventually fight on it or it will not go according to your plan.

You can get angry.

Swear off date nights.

Yell at someone.

Or, you can try again.

Know that no matter what went wrong last night, you can move forward.

Maybe you couldn’t think of anything to say, you said the wrong thing, sex was not what you hoped it would be.

That’s okay.

Life does not end because of one bad date night.

On the flipside of that, when date night does go wrong, that is a great opportunity to take inventory of your marriage and determine if something is going on underneath the surface of your marriage that caused it to go wrong.

You could also try again tonight, except do date night at home and see how it goes.

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9 Reasons to Celebrate Valentine’s Day Every Week

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Recently, I was with a group of women and they were talking excitedly about going out for Valentine’s Day. When they asked me what Josh and I were doing, and I said we weren’t doing anything special that day because we don’t really celebrate Valentine’s Day.

They all looked at me with a look that said, “Poor thing.”

The reality for us is that we don’t celebrate Valentine’s Day on Feb. 14th because 7 years ago, we began having a weekly date night, so Valentine’s day is less important to us.

As a funny way to answer the question, Josh and I came up 9 reasons we don’t celebrate it and instead celebrate it every week with a date night (some are his and some are mine).

Here you go:

Vomit. Someone is bound to throw up (ie. our daughter last night) and ruin your plans.

Action. You will get more action if you celebrate Valentine’s day every week instead of once a year. Scientifically proven fact.

Little planning. Valentine’s day takes little planning. Roses, a card someone else wrote that you signed. Plan ahead and have a great date night.

Expensive. Everything is more expensive on Valentine’s Day. Everything.

Not enough. Celebrating valentine’s day, having a date night once a month or three times a year is not enough for your marriage.

T & A. You will get more of this with a weekly date night.

Irresistible. You will be irresistible to your spouse with a weekly date night. Also, find out what scent they like and wear that.

Never let your underwear drawer go more than a year without updating, keep it interesting (that’s just free advice and has nothing to do with Valentine’s Day but we needed another letter).

Everyone else is out on Valentine’s day. Plan a weekly date night and avoid the crowd.

So what do you do for a weekly date night? It doesn’t even have to be expensive. Here are some of our rules for date night and some ideas on how to do date night at home.

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History of Break-Up Songs

In honor of Valentine’s Day tomorrow, here is the history of break-up songs (yes, they bleep out some words, but it’s still funny):

(HT: 22 Words)

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Top Blog Posts for December

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In case you missed them, here are the top 10 blog posts from December 2013:

  1. Christmas Music You Should Own
  2. The Best Books I Read in 2013
  3. How to Make Christmas Special with Your Kids
  4. When Pastoring is Hard (And 3 Ways to Survive)
  5. Accountability
  6. The Five Stages of Discipleship
  7. Almost the Best Books of 2013
  8. Christmas is Over, Now What?
  9. You’re One Choice Away from Wrecking Your Life
  10. What’s Happening in 2014 at Revolution Church

Christmas is Over, Now What?

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I don’t know about you, but I woke up this morning feeling really down. Just had a blah kind of a feeling. Unmotivated. Not depressed or sad, but kind of down.

My first thought as I finished breakfast was, “Is this the after Christmas blues?” Or, “Am I just getting old now?”

Maybe you feel like that. Maybe you don’t (if not, pass this blog onto a friend that needs it).

I shared this quote on Sunday in my sermon that encapsulates what a lot of people feel around Christmas (I can’t remember where I found it):

Christmas Eve. The perfect picture of anticipation: sleepless excitement for something we’ve been waiting for all year. Every year on December 24, my parents let us open a present. This was a teaser, a taste of things to come, and we kids relished it. Of course, it wasn’t much of a surprise – my mom always got us new pajamas, even when we didn’t need them. But still, it was a ritual of hope, one in which we celebrated the gift of giving and the joy of gratitude. Christmas morning. An unfortunate picture of disappointment. I am obviously only one person with his own set of experiences, but as I talk to others, I find similar feelings of frustration. As they get older, many people seem to develop a general distrust toward any day that promises to fill the emptiness they’ve felt all year long. This explains the rise in suicides during this season and why, for some, Christmas is a reminder of the inevitable letdown of life. The unfortunate answer to the question, “Did you get everything you wanted?” is, of course, no. And we feel terrible about this. Why can’t we be happy? Why can’t we be satisfied? Will we ever be content with what we have – with the gifts in our stockings, the toys under the tree? Why is there this constant thirst for more?

As I thought about it today (after I destroyed myself with Crossfit), I started to wonder if we set ourselves up for failure leading up to Christmas. Christmas in many ways can be like a wedding and the letdown after on the honeymoon, follow me for a second. All of this pressure, build up, energy, stress and thinking and money goes into Christmas and a wedding. Then it’s over. The parties, the gifts, family, friends, the tree, decorations, cards, Christmas specials, church services, meals, over. Then we sit around looking at our gifts, watching our kids play with them and get tired of them and play with them some more.

You wake up on December 27, 28 or 29 and wonder, what now?

Here are some things that came to mind as I prayed through this feeling for me that might be helpful for you:

  1. Stop and take a breath. Slow down. December is a mad sprint for most of us. You went to more parties than you can count, ate more calories than you care to remember. You are tired. Take a break. Maybe take a nap. Read a good book or your Bible. But give some time to slow down. Stop rushing.
  2. Get moving. For me, I went and worked out, listened to some good worship music, prayed and got moving. Maybe you need to get moving and do something active. Most Americans will join a gym this week, maybe you should. At least take a walk, a run or a hike.
  3. Say thanks. Be thankful for what you have. Remember, someone is grateful with less than what you have. You may not have as much as someone else, but you have what God has seen fit to give you right now. Also, you may not see the next Christmas or someone you just celebrated with may not see the next Christmas, so savor the moments. Take a little longer in those hugs or laughs or cries.
  4. Get out of your house. I love being at home, with my family and friends. But, sometimes it is good to get out of your house. Go see a movie, do something fun, go see some Christmas lights. Don’t just sit around (sometimes you should sit around), but get going.

What do you do to fight the after Christmas blues?

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Merry Christmas!

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From my family to yours, Merry Christmas.

I appreciate the time you take as a reader to spend on my blog, sharing what you like, giving feedback through comments and enriching my life through your thoughts.

I hope you are able to spend today with those you love and that it is extra special.

Eat more than you should, hold your loved ones a little tighter than normal and relax because Jesus came to earth and is God so you don’t have to be.

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Monday Morning Mind Dump…

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  • Hard to believe that Christmas is in only 2 days
  • Hard to believe I can stop listening to Christmas music in 3 days
  • Oh wait
  • I do love this week of the year though
  • The presents, the excitement of our kids, the lack of sleep I’ll get from wrapping things and putting things together after they go down
  • But most of all, I love the days off and the downtime with my family
  • I am glad that this year we basically did all our shopping online
  • So much better than braving the stores and the craziness of that
  • Yesterday was a great day at Revolution Church
  • We wrapped up our 9 months series on the book of John
  • So much in that book and I love how it ends in chapter 21 and the message that Jesus isn’t finished with us
  • If you missed it, you can listen to it here 
  • I can’t begin to tell you how excited I am for the coming year at Revolution and what we’ll cover
  • This week though, we are kicking off a series I have been waiting for us to do for almost a year called Breathing Room
  • I really believe this series has the potential to change a lot of lives and families as we look at how to have breathing room in our finances, relationships, work and life
  • So many people want this, make resolutions about this but never get anywhere with it
  • I’ll also share some ideas on my blog this week about how to make resolutions that you will stick with
  • I tend to be a driven person, but have also learned some things on hitting goals
  • Well, I’m off to the race that is the next 2 days before Christmas
  • So excited to see my kids faces on Wednesday morning and celebrate our first Christmas with Judah!

Putting the Pieces of Your Life Back Together

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When we get to the end of the year, it can feel like a blur. 

The parties, shopping, exchanging gifts, getting everything done in hopes of taking some time off. Then, you look back on your year. Did you do anything worthwhile?

You may feel a sense of loss or pain for how the year went. You wonder where the year went. You hope that 2014 will be better but are unsure how. 

What do you do with that hurt that won’t go away no matter what you do? What do you do with that dream that never seems to happen? How do you handle your life falling apart while everyone else seemingly gets an easy path?

Does God love you less?

As we wrap up our series Made for Glory we will look at John 21 and see how Jesus sees us. We often talk about how we see God, what we think about God, but we rarely talk about how Jesus sees us and what that truth means for us. 

If you or someone you know struggles with feeling and knowing God’s love, seeing how God can put their life back together or how they can move out of the mess they are in, this is a great week to be at Revolution.

Don’t forget:

  • We are in the middle of our Christmas offering and this year we are using it to fight sex trafficking and plant churches in our city.  Click here to get more information and to give to it.
  • Mark your calendar for December 29th as we kick off a brand new series called Breathing Room. We’ll look at how to find margin and breathing room in our finances, work, schedule, pace and choices we make to find sustainable life.

Remember, we meet at 10am on Sunday mornings at 8300 E Speedway Blvd.

Monday Morning Mind Dump…

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  • I love this time of year
  • The parties, gifts, spending time with family and friends and Christmas preaching
  • Love it
  • Starting to love Christmas music more and more
  • It helps when you listen to it non-stop from Thanksgiving to Christmas
  • If you’re looking for some good Christmas music, here is a list of our favorites
  • Yesterday, we had lunch with someone who has been to Revolution 5 times and they brought 4 first time guests with them
  • The first time guests were so excited about finding a church
  • Love it
  • Then, we had our staff and elder Christmas party last night
  • So much laughter
  • Can’t believe who I get to lead with
  • In the background I kept checking the Steelers score only to find out that apparently we still remember how to play football
  • A little late
  • Winning now only screws up our draft pick so we need to keep losing
  • We dedicated Judah at church yesterday
  • Christmas has taken on a new meaning for me as an adoptive dad as I think about the relationship of Jesus and Joseph
  • It was really special
  • I’m posting my “best of” lists this week
  • So hard to go through and make my favorite books and albums of the year
  • Stay tuned for some good stuff
  • Yesterday was a killer day at Revolution
  • I got to preach on the resurrection from John 20
  • If you missed it, you can listen to it here
  • One of the things I love about preaching theology like that is how it stretches me as a communicator
  • Things like the resurrection are true, beautiful, overwhelming and the answer to so many struggles and questions we have
  • Yet, so many sermons and books make it too academic and not life changing
  • You have to bring the logical and emotional arguments to theological preaching
  • Read a killer leadership book over the weekend called Catalyst Leader
  • Highly recommend it
  • So excited for this coming Sunday at Revolution
  • We’re wrapping up our series in John and I am preaching on one of my favorite passages in the entire bible: John 21
  • Then on December 29th we are kicking off what I think will be a life changing series for a lot of people called Breathing Room
  • Then, we are going to do something we’ve never done before: a woman series and a man series
  • Going to be killer
  • Time to get to it…

Christmas Offering Starts This Sunday @ Revolution

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Every year at Revolution Church we do a Christmas offering. This is a chance for our church to give above and beyond what it normally does and give it away to bless others and move the gospel forward in Tucson and beyond.

In years past, we’ve helped to build wells in Africa, help fight homelessness and sex trafficking in our city, and helped to plant churches in Tucson and around the world.

So far, we’ve given away over $20,000 away.

This year, we are hoping to raise over $10,000, which would be our largest Christmas offering ever.

Here are some things it will go to:

  • It will go to helping church plants in Tucson and beyond through Acts 29 (the church planting network we are a part of).
  • It will go to helping us as a church get closer to planting Revolution Church | Midtown. Lord willing, we will begin preview services in the fall of 2014 and officially launch in January 2015.
  • We will continue to fight sex trafficking in Tucson through Sold No More and around the world through A21.
  • We will continue to be a blessing to Magee Middle School (the school we meet in). So far, we’ve been able to do teacher appreciation lunches, new student lunches, bought them over 170,000 sheets of paper when they ran out and TUSD wouldn’t buy more paper and stock every teacher with markers for their classroom because the school couldn’t afford them.

You can give online here to it or on a Sunday morning by marking your giving envelope “Christmas.”