- Thanks to all of you who were praying.
- As I was standing out in the hallway waiting to go into the room right before the service started, all of the sudden I felt very strongly the presence of God and a great sense of peace.
- As I look back on it now…it almost seems like an out of body experience…almost like someone else did the funeral.
- I hope this doesn’t sound proud or boastful, but I was proud of the job I did.
- I guess you would have had to have been there…God gave me such a sense of peace and the words to say and composure that I quite frankly surprised myself.
- The one funeral director afterwards told me that it was one of the best eulogies he had witnessed in the 25 years he has been in the business.
- It still seems very surreal.
- It was tremendous to see Earl and the rest of our church staff, drive down to be of support to myself and the family.
- Speaking of tremendous…my sister wrote a letter to my grandmother that she wanted me to read during the funeral. The day before though she told me she wanted to try to read it, but that if she was too emotional I’d have to do it.
- When the time came she popped up and started, but quickly lost it…again in what I can only describe as a God moment…I went beside her, put my arm around her and whispered, “You can do it.” Throughout the entire letter I kept whispering words of encouragement, “You’re doing great”, “Don’t stop”, “You’re almost done.”
- Again I am so thankful to God for doing something in me that doesn’t always come naturally.
- There’s so much more I could share, but I won’t…thank you all from the bottom of my heart, for you love, prayer, and concern during this rough time for our family.
- I love you all!
Archives for March 2008
Yesterday I went to the funeral of Mark Olson. He was only 23 years old and died in a car accident on Friday. His brothers and friends were in United on Sunday so I wanted to go show my support. As I expected, the funeral was packed…I had to sit in a completely different room and just listen via the speakers in the main room to what was going on. What an awesome show of love and support to his family during an incredibly difficult time.
Then last night was my grandmother’s viewing. Being 84 years old and having had many of her friends pass away already, I expected maybe a few dozen people to show up during the 7pm-9pm time frame that had been set. Uhhh…no. We got there at 6:40pm and the people started coming…the line kept growing and growing…ringing the room…then down the hallway…then into the main lobby….then out the front door. For 2 1/2 hours the line remained like that. People were waiting 20-30 minutes to just make it through. We didn’t get everyone done until about 9:40pm.
Quite frankly I was shocked by how many people my grandmother had touched and how many friends my grandfather had who wanted to come out and support him. Considering the fact that the hospital had just released him the night before, he said that all the friends and family that came out were helping in his physical and emotional recovery tremendously.
Now for the prayer request. I’ll be preaching a part of the funeral this morning. I’ve tackled a lot of enormous tasks in my life but this may be the hardest. When my grandfather passed away 2 years ago we had a memorial service for him a month after his death and I led that, which was hard, but at least some time had passed…this is still pretty raw, so please, please, please, if you read this on Thursday morning, say a prayer for me at 11am as we get started. Thanks!
- I’m feeling much better today…could have to do with the new pool table that was installed today though.
- Seriously this is the first day in a few weeks that I haven’t felt the need for an afternoon nap. Ok, check that…it’s the first day in awhile that I’m not taking an afternoon nap.
- I won the CAYA tennis tournament last night! Seriously this time I’m not lying…I really won…in fact I didn’t lose a single game.
- Thank you all so much for the cards, e-mails, e-cards, notes and words of sympathy following my grandmother’s death…it means a lot to know you care and that you are praying.
- I’ll be leaving after I’m finished with this post to go spend a little time with my grandfather in the hospital. His recovery has been rough considering everything that’s going on…please keep him especially in your prayers.
- Some time I’m going to do a series called “Confessions of a Pastor.” I know of other pastors who have done something similar and it’s always shocking for people to hear what the pastors have to say.
- Here’s one of mine…I hate it when people in my family die. As the “pastor” I have to be the strong one and be there for everyone else. I’m not complaining…there are so many other benefits to being in ministry, but this is the one that bugs me.
- And oh yeah…guess who always prays at family meals.
- Wow that got depressing all the sudden didn’t it…on a much happier note…
- I AM JACKED UP ABOUT THIS WEEK’S EXPERIENCE!!!!!!
- I’m going to be speaking about forgiveness and as I’ve been putting the finishing touches on the message, I can honestly say that everything that we have planned could make this the most meaningful, life-changing Expereince ever!
- If you know of someone that is hurting in any way, do whatever it takes to make sure they are with you…I really think God is going to do some tremendous healing in our midst.
- I AM ALSO JACKED UP ABOUT THE LEADERSHIP RETREAT FROM THIS PAST FRIDAY AND SATURDAY!
- WHY AM I TYPING IN ALL CAPS?
- Anyway, the vision and direction God has given our team is exciting and i believe the entire church is going to be much stronger for the growth God has in store for us…I’ll give you more details as I’m allowed/feel led…but for now, all I can say is get ready to be used by God to impact the region in a major way.
- Tonight is honestly the first Council meeting that I can say I’m looking forward to attending…can’t wait to further expand upon this weekend!
- Between still being sick, the death of my grandmother on Friday, our big leadership retreat over the weekend and the normal adrenaline of preaching…I feel like someone has taken a baseball bat to my body.
- Despite all that, we had another awesome Experience…4 more people born into the Kingdom!
- I wasn’t even planning on doing a call for commitment at the end but felt the Spirit nudging that way…just goes to show what I know.
- This was one of my favorite worship sets we’ve ever done…the band was hitting it on all cylinders…the new song “Look to You” was amazing!
- We weren’t sure what the attendance would be today since the Blended Service in the sanctuary had a special Easter program going on, but we ended up with our 2nd highest attendance ever!
- Looks like a lot of you took the challenge from last week and invited in your friends.
- Keep up the inviting…Easter is only 2 weeks away.
- Only heard of a couple of people who were confused with us not changing the time…seemed to be a success.
- Even for those that were confused, it still meant they were there, just an hour early.
- Without going into major details, the retreat this weekend looking at the future direction of the church was great….we’ve got some huge things planned for the entire church and United in the coming months and years that are going to be incredible. Keep praying as God gives us direction now on the timing of each of those things.
- Let me just say this…to accomplish what we feel God is calling us to, it is going to take a lot more people discovering and then using their spiritual gifts.
- If your not currently serving in some way, please let us know so you can play a part in the exciting things God has in store for us.
- Tonight is CAYA and I’m hopeful of afterwards redeeming myself in the competition on the Wii.
Just got home from our leadership retreat and Lisa had a few e-mails from people on the set-up crew saying they are sick and won’t be able to make it in the morning. So if you’re available at 8:45am to come in to help set-up chairs for United that would be great! Thanks in advance.