My dream for every Thriver in 2015

I have a dream!i_have_a_dream_by_aners56-d3kx6uc

I have a HUGE dream for every person who calls Thrive their Church home in 2015.

It’s not a complex dream. It’s actually pretty simple.

And, I think it’s possible. So, here you go, here’s my dream. Well, actually, my dreams.

My dream is that every person who calls Thrive Church their home in 2015…

…Would fall deeply in love with Jesus.

…Would be passionate about prayer.

…Would search out God’s word.

…Would be Jesus to their family and to their world.

…Would be deeply concerned and care for the poor and the hurting and the needy.

…Would immerse themself in a Growth Group.

…Would become an irrational giver.

…Would use their leadership to influence others for Jesus.

…Would dream like they’ve never dreamed before.

Just imagine. Imagine how our lives would change. Imagine how our families would change. Imagine how our neighborhoods would change.

And, change for the better!

Let’s be focused on Jesus in 2015!! 



The Pastors I’m Inspired by and I’m learning from…pt. 1

Here is a list of the Pastors I’m inspired by and I’m learning from. If these Pastors have books, I read them. I watch or listen to their messages. I follow them on Facebook/Twitter. And, if they blog, I read that.

So thankful for this group of Pastors!

Here are the Pastors who blog regularly…

Perry Noble

Carey Nieuwhof

Mark Batterson

Mark Beeson

Ron Edmonson

Steven Furtick

Tim Keller

Here are the Pastors who don’t blog, but who write…

Andy Stanley

Bill Hybels

Jud Wilhite

Craig Groeschel

John Ortberg

I have absolutely no relationship with any of these pastors. I’ve talked with a few and stalked some others, hah! But, my next list are Pastors who are friends and mentors.


5 yr old and under Churches that I’m Inspired by and Learning from…pt 2

Yesterday I posted a list of churches that inspire me and that I’m learning from.

If you read through the list or clicked on the links, you probably noticed very quickly that they are all the ‘super-big-crazy-God story’ churches.

Today’s list also includes ‘super-awesome-crazy-inspiring-God-honoring’ Churches. And, a part from 2 churches on this list, all these pastors are friends or mentors.

Thrive Church

Great Lakes Church

One Love Church

Rock City Church

Journey Church

The Church at Visalia

Hope City Church

Rise City Church

Verve Church

One Church

So, who am I missing? Who do I need to be learning from and studying?







Churches I’m inspired by and I’m Learning from…pt 1

I’m a bit of a research hound. I’m always reading, searching through church websites and studying other churches.

And, I love the church and I love my church. I’m always looking at other churches and trying to learn as much as I can.

Here is a list of churches that I resonate with and am always learning from.

NewSpring Church

NorthPoint Church

Willow Creek Church


Central Christian Church

Kensington Church

2|42 Community Church

Elevation Church

Flat Irons Church

Tomorrow I’m post a a list of churches that have been started in the last 5 years that I’m challenged by and learning from.





What!?! There’s no Thrive this Sunday? How can that be?

What I’m about to write is both sad and exciting. So, here goes…10393817_10153133626923455_1907645602712838713_n

Thrive Church is not gathering together this Sunday for our normal experiences.

What!?! How can that be?

I told you it was sad! But, here’s the exciting part. We’re not gathering together for 2 main reasons…


To give our volunteers a break! Every single Sunday we have a dedicated team of people who show up early and stay late to turn Celebration Cinema into a Church. We are giving them a Sunday off. Thats exciting!!!!

It’s a Sunday to…hang with family, sleep in, rest, check out another church or spend time with extended family.

I know, I am partly sad about this. But, I know this will be huge in the long run for our volunteers.


To give Thrive families some time to just be together. It’s no secret, I dream of the days that the majority of Thrive families will be at Thrive on Sunday’s 3-4 Sundays a month. The national average for church attendance right now is just about 1-1.5 times a month. I dream of the day when Thrive helps raise that average.

But, right now, we are about there.

So, I hope this Sunday off will give families a chance to re-tool. Relax. Unwind. Hang out. Pray together.

Don’t miss January 4th!!!!

All that being said, I can’t wait for Jan. 4th at Thrive!! Please do everything you can to be there!!

Can’t wait! The best is yet to come!

Oh, and if you would like to help with our Year End giving, you can give online here

Proud to be married to such a Selfless woman

I am so Proud to be married to such a selfless woman.IMG_4073

We were talking last night, and in Thrive’s short existence, she’s never sat through the experience. She’s never heard and sang all the worship songs. Never heard one of my full messages. Never. Nota. None.

Why? Because we just haven’t had enough volunteers in Thrive Kidz for her to be able too leave that hallway. And, she does it willingly. She doesn’t have to do it, she chooses it. Just because she’s the Pastor’s wife doesn’t mean she has to serve kids, But, she does. And, she works tirelessly throughout the week to get things ready for Thrive Kidz.

Tracie and I have been married for almost 18 years and she’s always been selfless.

I don’t mean this in a mean way, but she’s so low maintenance its crazy sometimes. I can count on both hands the amount of times she’s had her hair done or her nails done. She never asks for jewelry, or shoes or clothes. I actually have to push her to buy stuff for herself. Again, not trying to be mean, but it’s annoying sometimes!!

She just always wants to make sure the kids and I have what we need. For 10 years, she has spent thousands and thousands of hours taking care of our PKU’ers diets and I just can’t remember ever hearing her complain about it.

One of the things I was most attracted to about her was her servants heart! And, that’s still the case.

I just don’t know how’s she done it over the years. Because I’ve served at Churches for the last 20 years, we have never gone to church together. (That’s change with Thrive because our whole family drives to church together at 630am). We’ve had a few pockets where we could sit with each other and actually drive to church together, but never really be a part together. If that makes sense. Again, I can literally count on both hands the amount of times we have sat together in church. Crazy!

Then, as babies have come along, she’s been on her own to do the whole ‘get the family ready for church’ thing.

There were years when our kids were really little and she was getting the special PKU diets all together, feeding and getting our other two kids ready and then bringing them all to church on her own. And, for 4 years, we had the privilege of being a part of a GREAT Church in Chicago…Willow Creek. It was a massive building and literally took 25 minutes to get all 4 kids in their classes and she did it alone all the time.

I talk with young couples now who have little kids and it’s funny to hear stories about how their lives come to a grinding halt when they have kids. It just makes me more proud of my wife.

She’s strong. She’s wise. She’s a hard worker. She’s in love with Jesus.

Again, not sure how I married so well!!

You’re invited to Christmas Eve at Thrive

Wait a minute!! Hold the phone!!IMG_3345

How in the world will Thrive host a Christmas Eve Experience? Isn’t that the church that doesn’t have their own building and meets in a real live movie theater?

Yes, but, we will gather together for Christmas Eve at Celebration Cinema. Oh Yes we will!

So, come and celebrate with us. 

Sing Christmas songs, bring your entire family and lets gather together.

Tomorrow night at 6pm at Celebration Cinema in theater one. There is no Thrive Kidz, so everyone will be in theater one together!!

See you then!!