A super humbling facebook post

Sunday afternoons are pretty fun! 

Not because of football! But, if I had cable that would be another reason they’re fun!

Because typically, Facebook just lights up about peoples experiences that morning at Thrive Church!

It’s so humbling to grab my computer and read away.

It’s humbling because I love, LOVE what God is doing in peoples lives. It’s just amazing! To hear stories of life transformation. To hear stories of life change. To hear stories of peoples excitement about what Jesus is doing in their hearts is just…

Amazing. Humbling. Fantastic. Honoring. Awesome. 

And, to be a part of this church, even though its a tiny little sliver…again, is so humbling.

I’m so blessed to be Thrive’s Pastor and it is not something I take lightly. I love that I have been called to be Thrive’s Pastor, I love my work, I love my job and I love the people that are a part of Thrive Church. I love Central MI and I love the vision we have for reaching the unchurched.

On Sunday, there was a Facebook post that really made me sit down. It wasn’t bad. It was so stinking nice and so humbling to read. Screen Shot 2014-10-13 at 5.43.47 PM

It was posted by a Thriver I very much respect and her words just hit me.

They hit me hard!

In the post she said I was brave.

Gosh, those words just hit me.

You know why?

Because Church Planting is Hard! Don’t let anyone tell you that it’s not. This has been the hardest endeavor of my life.

It has been difficult, it’s been an uphill battle and there have been times that have been so hard, I wanted to scream! Then, hit something and then move to a beach!

No, really! Planting a church is not easy. I’ve learned that and I’m only a year in! I don’t care if you have a ton of start up money or no money, it’s hard.

It doesn’t matter if you start with a large group of people or a small group.

It’s just hard. There are challenges, there are obstacles, there are lack or resources, there are negative words by Jesus following people, there is the weight of being a part of peoples lives and it’s an uphill journey.

Now, it’s a GREAT journey! To see something start from nothing is AMAZING! To pray and pray and pray and then to see God answer your prayers is AMAZING! And it’s all worth it!

Because people matter to God. Because people desperately need a Savior. Because people desperately need a community that loves and cares for them.

The local church is the hope of the world and we need more dynamic–life-giving–not bent on traditions churches!

So, I know this post was a little self-servicing. I hope it didn’t come across that way.

I was just really honored and I wanted to share.

Facebook 101…The real reason to use facebook

There are so many reasons to use Facebook. Too many to list in this blog post. But, what I hope to convey is what I think, the only real reason to use it.

And yes, I understand I’m going out on a limb a bit.

I’ve been working on a series of posts about Facebook for a few months now and I’m ready to start putting them up. So, here’s my first go at it.

Here’s what I know about Facebook…

It can either greatly improve your life or it can bring a world of negativity into your life.

The great thing is…you get to choose.

It can either encourage you or suck your time away from you.

The great thing is…you get to choose. 

It can either be used a tool to communicate with friends and family or it can be used to spread negativity.

Again, the great thing is…you get to choose. 

This is how powerful this simple online website is! It has the potential to bring life to people. To get them connected. To get them engaged. But, way too often it does the exact opposite. People get more frustrated, they become more envious and jealous and the negativity just fills their mind.

In fact, I would be rich if I had a nickel for every time I heard someone say ‘I’m so tired of the drama on Facebook’.

Ok, so what’s the real reason to use Facebook? Instead of listing a ridiculously long list, I’m just gonna cut to the chase and post what I believe is the only real reason to use Facebook. Here we go:

To bring life to others. 

Yup, I really believe it’s not about you. Its not about me. It’s about bringing hope. Bringing joy. Bringing new ideas. Bringing new connections. Bringing new relationships and encouragement for old ones.

It’s all about…bringing life to others.

Enough with the hate. Enough with the negativity. Enough with the late night woe is me posts. Enough with hiding behind it. Enough with the name calling. Enough with the ‘my life is better than yours’. Enough.

Enough. Please. 

Please just use it to bring life.

Don’t know how? Well, that’s tomorrow’s post.

4 Ways to make your daddy/daughter dates great

Yesterday I posted a bunch of reasons to take your daughters on daddy/daughter dates.

Today, I thought I would give 4 super easy ways to make your daddy/daughter dates great!

4 Ways

1. Put the date on the calendar and let nothing else trump it.


2. Spend a few days asking your daughter what she wants to do on your date.

Give her ideas, but let her dream. If she’s old enough, text back and forth about it.

3. When you’re on your date…Listen, Listen, Listen. In order to do that, you have to ask a crazy amount of questions.

Questions like…

  • What’s your favorite…Band, Singer, Web Page, Food, Bible Verse, Color, Store
  • What friend cares for you the most? What do you do for them?
  • What kind of boy makes you smile?
  • How much do you think Jesus loves you? Why does He loves you?

4. Do whatever she wants.

Don’t say no or not now. And just do it. Ok, don’t rent a private jet and fly to London for her to hang out with One Direction! Do it if you can! But, there are a million ways to make the date special, so…make it special.

Dads…4 Reasons to take your daughters on dates (ok, 10!)

I love my girls.IMG_1612

If you ever visit my Facebook page or hang out with my family, it will probably become very apparent that I love my kids. I have two boys and two girls.

I adore all 4 of them. Being a dad is the best!

I’m trying to be very intentional  about taking out each one of my kids. To get one on one time and to pour into them.

Dads…here is a simple list of why to take your daughters on dates. I thought I would write 4, but 10 just popped out.

Reasons to take your daughters on dates 

1.     Their childhood only happens once

2.     Their childhood zips by at the speed of light

3.     Their childhood is the only one they have

4.     Their childhood builds a foundation for what kind of husband they are going to look for IMG_1583

5.     They need your one on one attention

6.     They need your hugs

7.     They need your words of affirmation

8.     They need those memories of when you put them first above everything else

9.     They need you to listen

10.   They need to hear your stories

Dads, take your daughters out on dates. Trust me, it will deepen your relationship with them in ways you never would have imagined!

5 Things I learned from taking a few days off of Social Media

This past week I took a few days off from Social Media. It wasn’t anything major…just a few days. I have friend who takes off the entire month of July. Mine was nothing like that. But, my wife and I took a week off and I decided it was time to unplug.

It was time to unplug because for me social media consumes too much of my life.

So, I deleted all social media apps from my phone and I didn’t check them at all on my computer. I even turned off my email! Needless to say, it was a brand new experience for me!

It was really revealing and really good and after only a week I learned a bunch.

5 Things I learned

1. I am addicted.

This was not a shocker. I found myself checking my phone every 5 minutes, ok 3 minutes, to see what I was missing. And, because everything was shut off, I wasn’t missing anything. Honestly, it took about a day or two before I stopped checking my phone so much.

So often at night, when I can’t sleep, I flip through Facebook in hopes that that will help me fall asleep. It never does! I’ve ready study after study saying that in fact it does not help but actually messes negativitly with your sleep schedule.  So, I found myself praying more as I lay in bed and talking to Jesus as I fell asleep. It was awesome.

2. The world still goes on when you go off. 

Yup, everything still happened and it didn’t care at all that I was offline.

Yeah, that basically sums it up.

3. I’m not as important as I think I am.

I’m reminded of this pretty often (I do have 4 kids!), but taking a week off from social media cemented the fact that I’m not really all that important at all! Hah! My goal for social media is always to bring hope and point people to Jesus, but honestly, I fall into the trap of thinking I’m more important than I really am.

I remember when I crossed the 3000 friend barrier on Facebook. I thought I was a really big deal. I really did, embarrassing, right??

It didn’t take long to be reminded of the fact that no one cares! Hah! I have actually started deleting friends, something I said I would never do and have deleted quite a bunch. More on that later.

4. My battery life is so much better when I don’t check Social Media all the time.

I literally went 2 days without charging my phone all the time. It was awesome.

5. My online presence has nothing to do with my worth or identity. 

I have spent way too much time worrying about likes or losing friends or how many posts or how little posts or if people read my blog or building a platform or seeing what others are doing.

I’m done.

All of that has nothing to do with my worth or identity. It’s embarrassing to even type that. But, truthfully, I have fallen in that trap before.

I learned a ton

I think I’m going to keep Facebook off my phone. I’m def. going to stop checking it at night and I’m going to work hard at guarding my time.


Baptism at Thrive is this Sunday!!

This upcoming Sunday may be the biggest Sunday of Thrive’s 10 month existence! 

Now, we’ve had a lot of great days these past 10 months. But, there is nothing like celebrating peoples decision to go public with baptism. 10550813_661077977320853_4739697889853157884_n

Nothing! It’s just awesome and especially for a church family to do that together, yeah, it’s awesome!

So, here’s what you need to know about helping make this day an amazingly awesome success!

1. Attend this awesome Sunday!

I’ve been telling Thrive about it for months and we’re finally here! I can’t wait!

So, be in attendance. Bring your family. Bring your friends. Bring the co-worker who has some interest in checking out Thrive.

2. Get baptized!

If you have never been baptized, this Sunday is your opportunity. Here are a few answers to the most asked baptism questions:

Why should I be baptized? To follow the example set by Jesus (Mark 1:9), Because Jesus commanded it (Mt 29:19-20, and it demonstrates that you’re a follower of Christ (1 John 2:3).

What is the meaning of baptism? It illustrates Christ’s death, burial and resurrection (1 Cor. 15:3-4)

Why be baptized by immersion? Because Jesus was baptized that way (Mt 3:16a), Every baptism in the Bible was by immersion (Acts 8:38-39), the word baptize means to dip or immerse, It best symbolizes a burial and resurrection (Rm 6:3-4).

Who should be baptized? Every person who believes in Jesus, has repented of their sins and has decided to follow Jesus should be baptized. (Acts 2:41)

If you’re ready to be baptized this Sunday at Thrive, sign up here

Oh, if you are getting baptized, invite your family and your friends to celebrate with you!

3. Help make this day awesome.

…Help us set up at 830am

…Bring a dish to pass

…Bring $10 for your ‘I love my church’ T-Shirt

…Bring someone with you

…Cheer, laugh, Clap, and Cheer some more

…Sing loud

Ok, I can’t wait to see you this Sunday at 11am in Lake Isabella!!!


A new thing for me…A Social Media Fast

So, I’m leaving for a week long vacation in a few minutes. I can’t wait.

I’m going to try something new this week. It’s not going to sound revolutionary, but for me, it is.

It’s CRAZY for me to even write this or even attempt this, but, here goes…

I’m taking a week off of Social Media and Email. 


I can’t remember a time in the last 5 years where I haven’t been connected to either of those two vices all the time. Even when we’ve taken smaller trips, I’m always checking both.

This week, I’m checking out. The away message is set on my emails and this is my last post for the week. Now, I have scheduled a few posts to go out on my sites, but I won’t be checking them.

Why am I doing it?

I need some quiet in my life. I’m honestly addicted to social media and it’s a bad. I’m tired of all the negativity on social media and I have to get away.

Now, on the other hand, I love it and see the incredible good that comes from it.

But, this week, I’m out.

See you on Saturday, probably :)