DAD FEST is COMING to Thrive Church and we need your help!

DAD FEST is coming to Thrive Church! Actually…it’s almost here!

It’s on Sunday June 14th and it’s after each Sunday morning experience. There is a special DAD TENT (Yes, there is some SUPER COOL STUFF in the DAD TENT), Inflatables for kids and students, a Giant Football Competition area (Thanks to Eagle Village and Victims to Victors), Dunk Tank, a Live Band, FREE FOOD, Cool Cars and a ton of other fun!

I AM SO EXCITED! 

Here are photo’s from last year’s Dad Fest!!! This year, we’re taking it to a whole new level! Why? Why are we doing this? Investing the time, energy and finances into this event?

Here’s why…to get more men to be a part of Church. To give men a chance to fall in love with Jesus. To encourage Dad’s to be the spiritual leaders in their house holds.

And, to reach as many people as possible!! Actually, I’m praying that this will be our largest attended Sunday to date!

How you can be a part of Dad Fest 2015

1. Pray for Dad Fest! Pray that God would send men! Men that would never step foot into a Church! Men who desperately need Jesus. Pray that men, women and children would respond to the Gospel. Pray that the weather would be amazing! Pray that our parking lot would be stuffed! Pray that the extra stuff we’re looking for would be donated.

2. Be at Dad FEST! Be there. Make it a priority!

3. Serve at Dad FEST! We need a completely other team to set up, run and tear down DAD FEST. If you can help, email Sarah.burkhart@thrivechurchmi.cc.

4. Invite and Bring EVERYONE you know! This Sunday you will be given little invite cards, pass them out. On Wednesday, June 11th at noon, be a part of the DAD FEST Facebook flash mob! Message people. Call them. Invite them. Email them.

5. Donate. Thrive is only 84 weeks old and hosting events like these cost a lot of money. It’s well worth it because we’re able to reach exponentially more people than a normal Sunday, but help donating stuff would be awesome. Here’s what we need:

  • Cans of Pop.
  • Cases of Water.
  • Bags of little chips.
  • Paper products (Plates, cups, napkins).
  • Sponsor an Inflatable. It’s about 300 per inflatable and we would like to have 3.

If you can help, email Sarah.burkhart@thrivechurchmi.cc.

It’s coming! Get ready!!

dad fest

 

 

Sunday’s are Overwhelming to me…in the absolute best way possible!

I love Sunday’s!

I really do! I can’t wait for Sunday’s. I purposely go to sleep early on Saturday’s so I’m ready for Sunday’s. Pretty much every time the alarm goes off at 5am on Sunday’s, I hop up! Now, it hasn’t always been this way. In my 20 years of serving and working at churches, there were some descent stretches that I wasn’t all that fond of Sunday’s. Honestly, at the more traditional or contemporary churches, I really struggled. I’ll blog about that more later. And, to take it to another degree of honesty, the churches that I served at where I needed to dress up, it was even worse! Hah!

I love Sunday’s…they’re just simply overwhelming

There is always this moment on Sunday’s that I just get so overwhelmed! It takes an amazing amount of people serving to pull off Sunday’s for Thrive! It takes people who are committed to tithing (giving 10% of your income to God through the Church) to accomplish our mission. It takes an amazing amount of adults to love kids. It takes people hauling trailers, folding programs, setting up banners, making volunteers breakfast, counting the offering, learning the songs, mixing the band, greeting at the doors, pushing portable cases, liking stuff on Facebook, picking up the coffee, checking in kids to Thrive kidz, showing up consistently, inviting friends and family and praying and encouraging!

We do all this to Help people Find and Follow Jesus. 

Yesterday at Thrive was one of those special Sunday’s! The worship was out of this world awesome! I loved the creativity of the videos. I loved the camping set up in the lobby! Thrive Kidz was so fun and awesome! Actually, a brand new family told me in the green room that their kids LOVED Thrive Kidz!! That’s a HUGE win and just awesome!

We just about sold out of the first round of  the new Thrive T-Shirts!

And the best part ever…

1 person trusted in Jesus as their Savior. 

4 people recommitted their lives to Him!

I love my Church! I love the honor of being Thrive’s pastor. I love our Thrive staff team. I love our volunteer team. I just it!

If you’re looking for a Church home, I hope you will consider checking out Thrive this Sunday!

 

Exponential Conference…The Highlights…Day One…

For the second year in a row, I’m down at the Exponential Conference and its just awesome! My soul is being refreshed and I’m more excited than ever about what God is doing in my local church and the capital ‘C’ Church!

If you’re interested in church planting or wondering if God’s called you to plant a church, you have to get to Exponential. Its just that simple.

Ok, my time here is flying by, but I wanted to take a quick second and post about some of my highlights and learnings from day one.

The Highlights…

1. Tracie (my wife) being able to come. Over the last 20 years of ministry together, we really haven’t been able to attend all that many conferences together. I have traveled a ton for my speaking and the majority of the time, she’s had to stay home with the kids. But, she’s here and it’s AWESOME! So thankful for my parents and them taking care of our kids this week!

2. Part of our Thrive church staff team was able to come. I’m bummed we couldn’t bring everyone, but I am so excited we could bring part of our team and its awesome to experience it together. Its awesome to be inspired and encouraged and already we have had so many conversations about the dreams that God is putting on our hearts.

3. Leading a Stadia training on communication & preaching. Yesterday morning I had the blessing of leading a training on communication and preaching to a great group of new Stadia planters. It was a privilege and I loved being able to share what I’ve learned in my short time as a Pastor and a Church Planter.

4. Being reminded that the LOCAL CHURCH is ALIVE and WELL! I get so frustrated sometimes reading all the negative that’s written about the church. Being at Exponential is so good for my soul and every where I turn, there are constant reminders that because of Jesus, the Church is the hope of the world. And yes, I do know that many churches are in trouble and closing and that breaks my heart. But, so many are growing and planting new churches!

5. Gathering with our Stadia family. Last night was the annual Stadia banquet and it was so GOOD! To be in a room with hundreds of church planters and leaders is just awesome! I loved hearing all the stories of what God is doing across Stadia churches and it’s honor to be a part of the Stadia family! Plus, last night, we raised enough money to plant 12 Hispanic Churches across the country! So exciting!

6. ‘Let them see you bleed. Lead like Jesus’ ~Danielle Strickland. I just can’t stop thinking about Danielle’s talk yesterday. She was challenging, encouraging and it was so powerful!

7. Seeing so many friends! It’s a blast coming to conferences like this because I run into and I’m able to catch up with ministry friends from all over the country!

8. Hanging out with my boys from Journey Church! Last night was awesome! I actually stayed awake past 10 and hung out with the staff and our friends from Journey Church! I love those guys. Journey’s pastor, Jeremy Brown, has been my Stadia Coach for the last year and I wouldn’t have been able to lead my church without him! Brice, their worship leader has become a good friend and has been a constant source of encouragement. Chuck, their next gen pastor is an all around amazing guy and he helped me write our next gen pastor job description and I loved getting to know him as well.

It’s just awesome to have a partnership with their Church and to know we’re not alone! I love those guys and I know they have no idea how encouraging they are to me and my Church!

Day one was great! Day two has started and I can’t wait for what God has in store.

I miss my kids. I miss sleeping in my bed. I miss studying at my desk. I miss Mt Pleasant.

I can’t wait to be at Thrive Church this Sunday.

 

The time my 12 year old was ticked about baseball

I love baseball. I love that my boys love baseball. IMG_4900

I have played catch with them since before they were walking.

Every trip we have ever gone on, we always bring our gloves and play catch. We’re always throwing something. Always hitting something.

Honestly, as they’ve gotten older, it’s so fun! We throw harder…they dive…it’s fun.

I love it! 

But, today my 12 year was ticked about baseball! Let me back up. Yesterday, Bob, had a great first baseball game of the spring. Hit a great double to centerfield, pounded another ball that was caught and was hit by a pitch, and he eventually scored! He’s a good ball player. He loves playing baseball. It’s not his life, but I’m glad he plays.

Today he found out that some of his baseball games are on Wednesday nights and he was ticked.

No, I mean, straight up TICKED!

Why? Because that means he will miss ONE YOUTH. One Youth is Thrive’s student ministry and HE LOVES IT!! I love that he loves it. But, my goodness, he was mad.

I explained that we’ll get him to One Youth as soon as the games are over, but that wasn’t good enough for Bob.

Ok, this is tough for me. I love baseball! I love watching my boys play. So, it’s hard to see him mad about it.

But, I love ‘the Church’ and I love our church more. I love our student ministry. And, I’m proud–glad–excited–happy that he’s ticked about missing One Youth.

Yes, today I am one proud dad!