Saturday, October 25, 2008
Monday, October 20, 2008
Okay so I have failed in keeping up with my Catalyst Diary... I am going to go back to that, I promise. I still want to spend some time thinking on and processing things from that conference.
Monday, October 13, 2008
The first thing I went to at Catalyst was this pre-conference/lab think that was put on by Community Christian Church (from Naperville, IL). They are one of the leading churches in this country for church planting. A few of us from HCC went to a conference of theirs this past January and it was awesome. It was actually an e-mail from them that told me about Catalyst in the first place! I honestly wasn’t expecting a whole lot out of this seminar because I’m not particularly looking to plant a church (at least not right now J). But I really liked the people putting it on and…I mean, free breakfast. J
One of the things that I have been praying and seeking the Lord in is that He would give me a dream. There are so many things that I am passionate about. There are so many things that get my blood pumping. But I so desire that God would give me a DREAM… a specific vision for something for His Kingdom. So I got to this session early and sat down at one of the tables to find a journal sitting in front of me. I open it and inside the front cover it says, “I’m praying that you will discover the dream God has for your life” and it was signed by Dave Ferguson (lead pastor at Community Christian). Crazy…I knew that I was supposed to be there. The session that morning just happened to be called “Discover the Dream”…awesome.
I was expecting people to get up there and basically talk to us the whole time…but the morning started off with worship and journaling…which just happen to be two of my favorite things in the world. They put 3 journal questions up on a screen and gave us time to write/pray/reflect. I would encourage anyone who reads this post to go get their journal, or a piece of paper, or a napkin…anything works. But I would encourage you to spend some time wrestling with these questions. When you were born, you were born with a dream. You were given specific gifts and talents for the purpose of furthering God’s Kingdom. It’s time for the CHURCH to wake up and start dreaming…living “wide awake” as Erwin McManus says. So here’s the 3 journal questions…
- If I could do anything for God, I would…
- The barriers that are keeping me from doing this thing are…
- A specific people group, culture, or country that God has given me a heart for is…
I’ll spare you everything I wrote that morning, but one major discovery was that the barriers that are keeping me from reaching the dreams God has put in my heart all go back to FEAR and they all go back to ME. And when I say “fear”, I mainly mean a fear of the future. A fear of a loss of security. A fear that other desires of my heart may go unfulfilled if I pursue these dreams. A fear of the unknown. There’s part of me that SO DESIRES to go against the “normal patterns” of this world, the cookie-cutter American life, but I also think there’s a deep-seated fear of it as well. And what I noticed was that all of these fears point back to a concern for ME and a lack of trust in HIM. So I’m praying that God will break me of those things. They are straight from the evil one.
So what about you?? I would seriously encourage you to spend some time thinking and writing on those 3 questions. God may just wake you up to a few things!
“I’m praying that you will discover the dream God has for your life”!!
Saturday, October 11, 2008
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
If you've been following my blog for long, you likely know that I've been wrestling with a LOT lately. One of the biggest has been this tension that I am feeling between the way I am living as opposed to the way I know 80% of the world is living. I have found it impossible to justify the fact that I live in comfort, wealth, and ease while the majority of the world lives in poverty, disease, and danger. I'll just be honest - I have come to despise my possessions. I can hardly look at my iPod or my Macbook without thinking about the children who could be alive today with the money I spent on them. That may sound extreme...but it's where I am. I have been seeking the Lord a lot on what He would have me do with this tension. I still don't have the answers...but I have come to learn that my soul is not going to be at rest until I have heard from Him.
- Joel Hunter (Author of "A New Kind of Conservative") - Topic: "Compassionate Conservative"
- Peter Greer (President of Hope International) and Phil Smith (Co-Author of "A Billion Bootstraps") - Topic: "Microfinance: Ending Poverty"
- Jena Lee Nardella (Director of Blood:Water Mission), Jeff Shinabarger (Founder of Rwanda Clean Water), Bethany Hoang (Director of International Justice Mission) - Topic: "Doing Good"
- Dino Rizzo (Lead Pastor of Healing Place Church) - Topic: "Servolution: Ignite a revolution through serving"