This week so far is picking up where last week left off…crazy!
Before I forget…on Saturday I went to the funeral of Brian Miller’s grandfather. The entire Miller family has been attending United the last few years and wow are they crazy talented.
Brian spoke, his mom read an original poem, his two sisters and brother-in-law sang and his brother produced a very touching video montage of his grandather’s life.
I also bought a new video game this weekend…Tiger Woods Golf 2009 for the Wii. Haven’t got to play it too much yet, but boy do I stink….and I’m sore.
You may remember a few months ago in a message I was talking about the healing power of God and how that week I visited a young girl in the hospital who’s water had broken after only 5 months of pregnancy. Basically the doctors told her she was going to lose the baby, but God did a miracle and not only did she not lose the baby, but “somehow” her water was restored.
The reason I bring all this up is that this morning I got a call from her mom telling me that the baby was born today healthy as can be!
Just in case you’re wondering who won the NCAA basketball title this year, my answer is…Maryland!
They beat both North Carolina (whom supposed is the national champs) and Michigan State (who were the runner-ups)…in my book that makes them the champs. Congrats to my TERPS on another great season!
Speaking of sports…this morning when I woke up I decided not to shave and to wear my Washington Capitals warm-up jersey…figures then that I had to make a trip up to the hospital…that always happens on the days I’m looking like a bum.
Hopefully by now you have made some invites for Easter this weekend…gonna be a great day!
In case you’re not a part of the United Group on Facebook, here is the link to sign-up.
Oh yeah…how about my O’s taking it to the Yankees yesterday!
Now back to our regularly scheduled blog already in progress…please be praying this week the “3 open prayer”…
That God would open doors for you to invite someone.
That their hearts would be open to coming.
That you would have the boldness to open your mouth and actually make the invite.
I guess their is one final open then and that is that their hearts would we open to the message on Sunday…please be praying for me that God give me just the right words to share.
Had tons of people say how powerful today’s Experiences were.
Really got people thinking about the role alcohol plays in their lives.
Tough message to preach though…no matter what some people weren’t going to be happy…and just in case someone was happy, you throw gluttony into the mix and everyone leaves challenged.
We set another attendance record today largely in part to the 9:15 setting thier own personal attendance record for the 3rd consecutive week.
Way to go everyone…keep inviting people…lives are truly being changed.
Can you believe our band? They killed it today with their version of Carrie Underwood’s song “Last Name”.
Gayle did a phenominal job not just singing but playing the part…and how about Aaron’s guitar solo and Brian on the banjo!
Pretty funny when you think about it…last week Brian was mixing at the turntable and this week he plays the banjo…incredible versatility!
Yes we’ve got something planned next week that your not going to want to miss…make sure you invite someone to come along.
Someone asked me after the 9:15 what is the point in which someone is considered biblically speaking drunk.
My thought is once it affects your motor skills you are drunk. Which means that if you’re getting a buzz your close to the line if not already over it.
So please if your going to drink, do it responsibly…really no reason to have more than two drinks.
However, remember that all of us are taking the 30 day challenge…No alcohol at all for 30 days.
Again just to reiterate for those who may be reading this and you haven’t listened to the message. I don’t drink…haven’t had anything in over 16 years so this message has nothing to do with me and everything to do with teaching what the Bible truly says about alcohol.
The live questions today were once again fun but still a bit nerve wracking.
Answering questions in front of hundreds of people when you have no idea what’s going to come in is full of pressure but I think has been worth it.
The morning started earlier than normal for me when I was awoken by the sound of a snow plow…wait a second, what? A snow plow…are you kidding me?!
I get into church ok, but I’m wondering about the parking lot…Earl is normally in charge of snow decisions.
It was a bit slippery walking in from the parking lot and I’m worried about the older folks at the 8:00 sanctuary service slipping and falling so I call to have at least the senior parking area and guest parking area plowed.
Uhhh yeah…when I come out then at noon time everything is melted…snow, no snow…are you kidding me?!
So I get into the multi-purpose room to discover that the gym floor is a mess from a wedding the night before and that all of our tables for the tech area need to be carried out.
Now I’m running behind but not bad…everything is ready for the band to do their morning warm-up except the batteries for the mouse died. No problem more batteries in the back…ooops all batteries gone…send Brian out for batteries.
Ok, back on track…great band warm-up although Aaron asks for a bit of extra time. I told him no it’s 8:30 and we still have to check videos and other stuff.
Hit the video button…it plays on the screen…uhhh were’s the sound?
Check eveything we know to check…nothing. Starting to worry because we had 5 different video clips to play of which 2 were very important to my message.
Why do these things always happen on weeks that Andy is away?
Trying desperately to call him and wake him up on his “vacation”. Nothing, try Gayle’s number, Andy’s sister’s number, his parent’s number to see if they know which room they are staying in at the hotel. Nothing…nothing…nothing.
Mmmm…starting to get nervous…time is ticking.
Finally get a hold of Andy. “Oh no problem…do this.” “Mmmmm…already tried that”. “How about this?” “Nope did that to”.
Ok, time for plan “B”. Have Andy talk to Chris on the phone and walk him through repatching our entire video system.
7 minutes left until the 9:15 is supposed to start.
5 minutes…3 minutes…2 minutes…”Ok guys go ahead and start the countdown just without any sound”.
1 minute and 15 seconds left and the sound kicks on…whew just in the nick of time…everything will be good from here right…wrong.
Because we took so much time getting all that fixed nothing else got checked so we were having problems in other areas and then I come out on stage and don’t have a functioning microphone because I had forgotten to switch it back to the right channel after being in the sanctuary last week.
Luckily Aaron figured that out and was able to get me back on track during the first video.
All in all the 9:15 couldn’t have been much more of a trainwreck behind the scenes and then somewhat on stage.
How embarrasing since I was talking about making a great first impression in the message.
In any case, I had quite a few people tell me afterwards that despite the obvious glitches, the message was really convicitng and motivating so hopefully the whole thing was just Satan trying to keep us from accomplishing what we’re called to do in Franklin County and beyond.
A big thanks to Chris, Jerry, Jason and Aaron for keeping their cool under pressure and making the most of a bad experience. And oh yeah…thanks to Andy for being “on call”.
The 10:45 then went off without a hitch and was a reminder of why I was so excited about today.
The band did a great job in both Experiences and the new stage design Aaron did for this series is incredible.
I think the big light heart was a hit. Although I had a few people tell me they thought it was unintentional.
Guess that tells you what they think of Aaron’s ability to think creatively! 🙂
I had told Aaron earlier in the week that this was going to be one of my longer messages and wow I didn’t disappoint. 🙂 Nearly 45 minutes when you include the prayer at the end.
Guess I had a lot to share 🙂
In the hectic pace of the morning I lost my water bottle somewhere, so what the team doesn’t know is that backstage I was grabbing anyone’s bottle I could find and drinking from it.
I’d pay to see their reactions right after having read that!
So basically today was at both ends of the spectrum…but I’m still proud of the team for pulling through.
Today though was further proof of why we need more of you to serve. I am in no frame of mind to preach when all those other things are happening and I need to be there to help.
I look forward to the day when the only thing I have to do on a Sunday morning is preach and then be told afterwards about how things just barely came together in time.
When we were done today I went to lunch with Don Dennison, his wife Phyliss and Kim Mills. I hear Don did a great job filling in for Earl today in sanctuary.
I’ll check-in tomorrow with some other weekend thoughts. In the meantime, keep asking yourself “What if…”