A NEW day for Thrive…We hired a NEXT Gen Pastor!!

I am beyond EXCITED to announce that Thrive Church has hired a Next Gen Pastor! His name is Craig Torgerson and he’ll be starting this summer. He’s currently a youth pastor in TN and is working hard at transitioning, selling a house, getting packed and then moving up to MI. IMG_5127

It’s really a new day for Thrive and I couldn’t be proud!! 

The reality is, it’s time to hire a Next Gen Pastor. We’ve known this for many months, but God made it abundantly clear last fall.

Over the last year…

  • Thrive’s Sunday attendance has grown by 102%
  • Thrive Kidz has grown by 55%
  • One Youth has grown by 237%.

It’s time! And, we say all the time at Thrive that we never want to give our kids and students the scraps, so we’re ready to have a Next Gen Pastor on staff.

Craig will provide directional leadership to the Thrive Kidz team, he will lead One Youth and help families be God’s plan A for raising their kids. Craig grew up in Central MI and he and his wife Claire met at Central Michigan University. Together they have 3 kids under 3! Wow!

Craig and Claire went through the Church Planters Assessment Center and did great! A few weeks ago he finished up his interviews with our Church and we offered him the job and he accepted!

I’ve been praying for the day that we could add a Next Gen Pastor even before we started as a Church! It’s been a regular part of my Saturday morning prayer walks forever and I’m just humbled that God answered our prayers.

Like ever other full time staff member at Thrive, Craig will be raising part of his salary. Since we’re a church plant, our full time staff members have committed to helping raise half of their salary for their first two years. The reality is, a our church size should be able to handle three full time Pastors on our budget, but our giving is just not there quite yet. Our monthly giving has grown 69% over the last year, but our numerical growth has far outpaced that. Screen Shot 2015-05-16 at 5.13.31 PM

If you would like to help us raise additional funds, you can give here. Our goal is to raise $24,000 by July 1st. When you head to the link, you can either give to Thrive’s General Fund or directly to the Craig Torgerson Support Fund. All gifts are tax deductible.

Thanks for considering and thanks for giving! Without your financial gifts, Thrive Church just wouldn’t exist!

Please be praying for our Church as we transition into having a new staff member! Please pray for Craig’s ministry and for the Torgerson family!

 

Can’t wait to share a HUGE Announcement and start our #Fail series @Thrive today!

I am BEYOND excited!

I am BEYOND thrilled!

I am BEYOND humbled!

Yes, I have been waiting for May 17th to come forever! Ok, not forever, but awhile!

It’s been hard to be patient. It’s been hard to wait. But, the 17th is here and I’m ready!

Ready for What?

ONE…I have a HUGE announcement to make.

And, what I’m going to announce has been take a year of praying. A year of seeking God and egging Him. A year of prayer walks. A year of conversations. A year of dreaming. A year of being on our knees.

But, the time is here and I’m ready to announce it! I can’t wait! And, I am beyond excited!

I am so humbled that I get to announce this news when Thrive Church is only 83 weeks old!

TWO…We start the #Fail series! fail

I have been waiting for this series since last June when we started writing it! Failure and success is something that EVERY single person deals with and we’re going to dive into God’s Word to see what He has to say about how to respond when life disappoints us!

So, whether a relationship has failed, you got fired from a job, you received terrible news, something you’ve been working on bombed or when life has just beat you down. This series is for you!

Don’t miss a week of it! It’s 3 weeks and like always, head to Celebration Cinema at 9 or 1015!

See you this morning at Thrive Church! 

 

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!

Tomorrow is a Significant Day for Thrive Church and I can’t wait!

Ok, every Sunday is a Significant day at Thrive ChurchIMG_4652

AND…every Sunday is a Significant for every local Church!

They’re all important!

It’s the day that we get the privilege and blessing to gather together as a body.

Because at least for Thrive, Sunday is just a tiny moment of the week and our goal for Sunday is point people to Jesus and then release them to go be Jesus. To go be the CHURCH!

So, tomorrow is a HUGE DAY for that! 

There has never been a time when people need Jesus more than right now! There is so much pain, so much hurt, so much hopelessness and so many needs.

And, Jesus is the answer.

So, tomorrow is a HUGE DAY for that! 

And, for our young, 81 week old church, we are in a growing season and honestly, every Sunday is vitally important for us to gather together.

To be…encouraged, challenged, taught, to serve, to give, to meet new people, to be prayed for, to laugh, to cry, to think, to be pointed toward Jesus and to worship Him.

So, tomorrow is a HUGE DAY for that! 

Also, we’re experiencing communion together tomorrow and that’s just a major moment for every Christ follower. It’s a time that we really get to REMEMBER and CELEBRATE what Jesus did for us on the Cross.

Plus, we’re going (I believe) to have a powerful moment to go along with it.

So, tomorrow is a HUGE DAY for that! 

Lastly, I get to update our Church on our progress to hire a Next Gen Pastor! I can’t wait! It’s a HUGE honor to bring on another staff member and we believe God has brought an amazing candidate to our attention. AMAZING candidate!

Don’t miss out on hearing the details and how EVERYONE can be a part of this! Not just people with kids. EVERYONE in our church.

Because, if we want our Church to continue to grow and flourish, we have to POUR into, INVEST, RESOURCE and want kids and students to love Jesus and our church.

I love what Perry Noble said about this…

‘Student ministry is only important if you want life in your Church’. 

So, tomorrow is a HUGE DAY for that!

Please be praying! Please invite someone. Please show up early. Please reach out to someone you don’t know. Please serve. Please give financially. Please look to Jesus.

Tomorrow is a significant day and I can’t wait to gather together with my Church! 

I just want more of Jesus

I’ve been pretty stressed lately. Lot’s going on for our family. Lot’s going on at Church.

Life is full. Too full. 

Just like any family, we have a lot going on. We have kids in baseball and track and we have kids with special diets and lots of homework. We have a teenager, a pre teen and two who think their teenagers. For the first time in years, my wife is working again. She was a full time stay at home mom, but now she works for our church 25 hours a week (unpaid) and our family has adjusted to that.

Just like any Pastor, my week is insanely full. I take my work home. I’m constantly thinking about my messages, the people who haven’t been to Thrive in awhile, our church finances, are we an accepting church, future hires, spouses who don’t know Jesus, the upgrades we need, fundraising, who we can help, who we can’t help, our staff, our staff families, upcoming outreach events and the list goes on and on.

And, when I get too busy…I take my eyes off Jesus. It’s that simple. I’m not proud of that.

My morning quiet time is replaced with hustle or sleeping in or something else. 

My prayer walks go away or are less frequent. 

My reading of the books I love (typically about spiritual formation) is replaced with Yahoo news. 

My patience goes out the window.

My eating habits go from bad to even worse. 

I hug my wife and kids less. 

Again, I’m not proud of any of this. But, it’s amazing how easy it is to slip into this mode.

But, I can’t let my life stay in this mode! And, the only solution I know of is…

Jesus. 

I just want–Need–long for more of Jesus. 

So, I’m going to keep my eyes focused on Jesus. I’m going to make sure to pay attention to my life when it starts to get too full and I’m going to do everything I possibly can to protect my soul.

I just want more of Jesus in my life.

A Powerful Moment at Camp

*I wrote this post last Wednesday night but am just now getting around to posting it.

The last two weeks have been a blur. photo

I’ve slept in my own bed once in the last 10 days.

Why? Because I have been a part of 2 amazing summer camps for students as the speaker.

Last week I was one of the speakers for CIY MIX and this week I’ve been the speaker for Camp Velocity. Both are amazing camps. Both do an amazing job of pointing students to Jesus.

This is my second year of being a part of MIX and believe it or not, my 7th year being a part of Velocity. My first year was 10 years ago!!! How crazy is that?!?

For some reason, one that I can never figure out, God keeps opening doors for me to passionately share scripture and Jesus with students. It’s an honor and a blessing that I do not take lightly.

But, right now, I’m typing this during an amazing time of worship. Yes, I know I should be focused on worship, but I just had to get this post written because of what I’ve experienced this week.

Not only do the leadership of Camp Velocity do an amazing job, our worship leader this week (@philwing) has just killed it in leading us toward Jesus.

If you’ve never been in a room with hundreds or thousands of students worshipping, you are missing out!

These powerful moments are incredible and remind that there is a BRIGHT future ahead for the Church!

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