Month: June 2013

Partner with us to make Thrive a reality

I have written a lot about Thrive and the dream to launch this new church on this blog. thrive-logo-400x132

I believe passionately that the ‘local church is the hope of the world’ and that we desperately need more local churches.

That’s why today, I’m taking the next step to launch Thrive Church and I’m asking you to become a

Thrive Partner!

At our core, Thrive is all about reaching people for Jesus in Central MI. People who are living a life far from God.

Thrive exists to help people find and follow God and our dream is to help people become life long followers of Jesus.

We are a place where no perfect people are allowed and we believe Church should be…

Simple…Fun…and Real.

This cannot become a reality without the help and support (prayer and financial) of many friends and family. If you live in Central MI or CA, you can be a part of helping launch this new Church!2013-06-16 09.44.34

Partner with Thrive

1. Click on this link and find out what we’re about and how you can partner with us to make a HUGE impact on our area for Christ.

2. Watch the video describing our heart beat, download our launch plan and check out ways you can partner with Thrive.

3. Send the link to friends and family who have a vision for Church Planting and ask them to partner with us as well.

4. Pray for Thrive. Pray for God’s favor and blessing on our new church. Pray that God would send additional launch team members. Pray that we would be Jesus to our area. Pray that we would be able to raise funds to launch this church.

5. Give to Thrive. Partner with us and invest in increasing the Kingdom.

There has never been a greater need for more churches than now

and you can help launch and partner with us to launch Thrive Church.

Role of a Church Planter #5…Develop Thick Skin

There are a lot of different voices in a church planters head. Ok, that sounds a little weird, but let me explain.welcome-criticism-develop-thicker-skin

Everyday, there are competing voices that try to get our attention and convince us of one thing or another. Here are some of those voices.

The Voices…

  • Good
  • Bad
  • Positive
  • Negative
  • Encouraging
  • Challenging
  • Defeating
  • Uplifting
  • Critical

Some days a church planter is on the top of the world. We may have a few great conversations with potential church attenders or someone may have blessed the new church with some kind of financial gift. The positive voices fill our head and our hearts and remind us that God has called us to this work and our new church is going to advance His Kingdom.

Then…

All of a sudden and out nowhere the negative voices can come flooding in and wow, can they come flooding in!

Negative. Bad. Defeating. Critical.

Some days a church planter can get knocked off the top of the world. Someone may tell us they’ve decided to not be a part or they don’t like the direction of they have an issue with someone else on the launch team and they refuse to deal with it. Or, the finances don’t come in that were needed and negative voices can start to flood our mind and hearts.

Because there are so many different voices that are all trying to get our attention, there is one very important role that a church planter must take very seriously.

We must…

Develop Thick Skin

In order to balance all these voices, developing thick skin is of grave importance.

This is actually a HUGE leadership lesson period! 

We have to remember that we can’t please everyone. It’s impossible to please everyone. But, it’s most important to live out the call that God has put on our hearts and sometimes that means going a path that some don’t agree with.

And it means not taking everything too personally. Some people aren’t going to be called to your church. Some people may have their opinions about the vision or mission. You just can’t please everyone.

3 ways to develop thick skin

1. Please God. Worry about only pleasing God. Period. Stop wasting all the energy it takes to please people and divert that energy to God.

2. Be confident in who you are. When you stop worrying about what others will think, it takes so much pressure off. Now, that doesn’t mean you become a prick and not care about people. But, it does mean that you lead in the way you were created to lead.

3. Ask for peoples opinions. Yes, I think we need to go after what people really think. Way too often, people hold back from what they really think and then at the most inopportune time they tell us what they’ve been thinking all along. If we create a culture where it’s ok for people to really share, we will find ourselves less in the magical land of…’I wonder what they really think’.

People will have their doubts. People will question your motives. People will say both positive and negative things about you and the church and some days they will say both the same day.

As much as you can, you must drown out all the voices that pull you down and listen to the voice that matters.

1 Kings 19:12

      “After the earthquake came a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire came a gentle whisper”

Kingdom Work is Worth It!

I have this re-occuring that thought goes through my head every time I’m about to head out on stage to teach…

Kingdom Work is so Worth It! 

The other re-occuring thought  I have is…

I so don’t deserve to have this incredible opportunity. 

What’s Kingdom Work you ask?

Well, my friends at CIY have defined it well…

“To be willing and committed to giving the best of our gifts and abilities to serve Jesus and to advance the Kingdom of God, where ever they may be…and be willing to be mobile, to move to wherever God may call them to most effectively utilize these gifts to advance the Kingdom”

If you’re a follower of Jesus, He’s called us to Kingdom Work.

And, it is so worth it. It may not seem like it at the time. It may seem scary or be a huge leap of faith.

But, I guarantee if God is asking you to do some thing for Him, He will see you through it and be there for you.

 

Why do Christians have to bully?

I don’t really have the mental energy to answer this question right now.

But, Gosh, I am so tired of people who say they’re followers of Jesus and bully others.

They bully non-Christians, they bully Christians, they bully their family, they just bully.

I just don’t get it. 

I can’t even begin to count the amount of conversations I have with people who tell me they’ve given up on church or God because their tired of being bullied.

Bullied by…

Their families. Maybe they grew up Catholic or Lutheran or Methodist or whatever and now they’ve decided to attend a church that is not a part of the denomination of their childhood. They get bullied because of it.

Their friends. Yes, their friends. Sometimes friends can’t understand why they would give so much time to a church. Or follow God with their hearts.

Am I wrong? Maybe I’m just seeing it the wrong way.

It’s time to stop.

An Amazing Father’s Day at Thrive

Father’s Day 2013 will always have a special place in my heart.2013-06-16 09.37.23

Not only because I love, LOVE, being a dad, but because Thrive took our next step to officially launching as a Church.

Father’s Day marked our 4th monthly service in the movie theater and it went great!

The Highlights

1. Being around Thrive’s amazing Launch team. These people have committed to Attend–Serve–Invite–Give to Thrive. Their hearts are ridiculously amazing and how they serve God, the church and each other BLOWS ME AWAY!!!!

2. Our worship team! I love that God is bringing artists and musicians to inspire people with music and lead them in worship.

3. Challenging Dad’s to be Strong & Courageous. I taught from Joshua 1:1-9 and challenged Dad’s and every one else to Trust God when he says to be strong and courageous.

4. Watching how Thrive Kidz already loves kids! We have an amazing group of people who are creating an amazing environment for kids and teaching and modeling Jesus to them.

5. Seeing my family pour into Thrive Church. My wife, my kids and my parents are all a huge part of Thrive. My dad and my boys and I drive to the movie theater at 615am to help set up. I love it!

6. Meeting people who have given up on Church! I had a fantastic conversation with a guy

2013-06-16 09.44.34

who flat out told me…”I’m not expecting much from Thrive Church”. He was really involved in church as a kid and he stopped attending. His friend brought him and I’m hoping and praying he’ll experience Jesus in an amazing way.

7. Dad Fest 2013. We hosted our 1st annual Dad Fest and it went great. Our uber volunteer, Jon Faber, with help from the amazing Colette Hamlin, planned an awesome event right after the service in the movie theater parking lot. We had classic cars, quad rides, food and games. So much fun!

8.  Having our boys honor dad’s. We had some of our young guys honor our dad’s and it was a riot seeing them up front!

9. Launching a new Church. I pinch myself daily that God’s put the call on my life to launch a new church. It’s an honor that I can’t even comprehend!

10. “This is the Best Father’s Day”. Yup, I heard this from multiple Dad’s. So blessed! Only God!

I’ll throw in one extra one…

11. Man of Steel. A bunch of Thrivers came back to the movie theater to watch Man of Steel later that night. So MUCH FUN!!!

I pinch myself daily…I really get to be a part of planting a new church!

Tracie and I were driving home today after Church and we looked at each other and had the same thought…thrive-logo-400x132

We really get to be a part of planting a Church!

I really do pinch myself daily!

It is a joy! An honor! A privilege! A blessing!

I know I don’t deserve it and I’m amazed that God is using a guy like me.

But, here are my highlights from today…

1. Seeing our community build and grow.

2. Having our kids build relationships with each other and deepen those friendships.

3. Watching a few dozen launch team leaders set up a movie theater!

4. Worshipping in a movie theater.

5. Having so many GREAT conversations after the service.

6. Watching the dream of Dad Fest take root!

7. Heading back to the theater tonight with a bunch of Thrivers to watch Man of Steel.

8. Listening to people who help us put on the car show talked about how cool they thought it was for a Church to do this.

 

Why I’m Excited about Sunday!

Ok, here’s the deal…I get excited a lot! thrive-logo-400x132

I do.

It’s true.

But, nothing excites more than the local Church! Yes, even if Hootie and the Blowfish had a reunion tour in my front yard! Well…let me think about that! Hah.

I love the church. I believe passionately that the Local Church is the Hope of the World and I believe that God has called me to help launch a new church in Mt Pleasant, MI.

We gather together again this Sunday!!!

And, yes, that’s I’m so excited.

Now, Thrive Church is more than just a weekly service. We are doing our best to live out Acts 2. That means that we are praying for each other, meeting in community with other, laughing with each other, crying with other and being there for each other!

But, we also have a monthly service component right now and I love it! I love getting together and talking about Jesus. I love singing together, giving together and…

I Love Teaching God’s Word!

This Sunday at Thrive is Dad Fest!Dad Fest 2013 Car & Bike Ribbon

Service is from 930-1030

Dad Fest is from 1030-1200

Free Food

Games for the family

Car Show

See you then!!!!