Friday, May 30, 2008



Well, I'm teaching at Seacoast this weekend... but honestly, the hard part is over. Lucky for me a new thing at Seacoast just started: The weekend speaker gets to give his talk to 3-4 other pastors in an otherwise empty auditorium while they stare, fail to laugh at any of the funnies, and take notes during the entire message. It is excruciatingly painful to partake of this new exercise, but well worth the investment. After licking my wounds from 15 minutes of unyielding critiques, I was able to refine my message in ways I would have never thought about on my own. Thanks, Seacoast!


Selina and I went to the doctor for our weekly baby update. They decided to give us a late-stage ultrasound, so we got another peek at Gannon. I'm not 100% sure, but I think he's part alien... judge for yourself...

Saturday, May 17, 2008


Selina and I have too much stuff! We get nauseated just thinking about all the boxes we will have to transport to Tennessee. So, to alleviate the problem, we held a garage sale... 2 of them, actually. One a couple of weeks ago, one today... AND, I am happy to report that we dumped $450 worth of stuff. That's $450 worth of boxes that we will not have to pack, lift, move, and unpack come August.

I think we'll celebrate by going out and buying something we don't need and can sell in a few years in another garage sale for a lot less than what we paid for it!

Saturday, May 10, 2008


We've all said those words growing up, in the car, on vacation... That pretty much sums up my feelings right now. I'm glad we have moved toward starting the church at a manageable pace. I am grateful for this time to flesh out the vision God has given us and be able to build a solid team. But, at this point, I'm like an 8-year-old sitting in front of the tree, two weeks before Christmas, staring at a wrapped box that almost reaches the ceiling with MY name on it!

Some nights I cannot sleep. My mind races about what will be. Daily I find myself furiously scratching out thoughts... often, my hand cramps as it tries to keep up with my brain. I have on more than one occasion called out to God, "Please, no more... I cannot handle one more picture of what you desire to do!" I feel like John on the Isle of Patmos... "When I saw and heard these things I feel down to worship... Amen! Come, Lord Jesus!!"

I hope you are as excited as we are. I hope all of you who will be joining us on this great adventure fully understand the magnitude of what we are doing. I hope you feel as humbled and honored as I do to be used by God in such a magnificent way.

Even today, plans are being made, members are moving in on the city, and soon we will be together - working as one, for one purpose. Until that day, pray... pray hard! Do not lose sight of the vision... and "may the grace of our Lord Jesus be with you all!"

Friday, May 2, 2008


Monday evening we held our first ever fund-raising dinner. We planned every moment of the night... the worship, the videos, the speakers, the dinner, and the print materials. What we didn't plan for was the torrential thunderstorm that hit right about the time the event was to start.

After hearing a loud clasp of thunder, I looked outside. Then, I looked at my watch - 6:30pm. Then, I looked around the room... 15 people, tops... in a room ready to accommodate 96. My heart sunk into my stomach and I began to swoon. Selina quickly interrupted my near-panic attack: "We should probably go ahead and pray over the meal."

The last thing I wanted to do was stand in front of 15 people and pray over a meal prepared for 6 times that amount! It was the reverse of Jesus miracle of the 5 Loaves and 2 Fish!! But, I went ahead and prayed and everyone began eating... well, everyone except me... I stood there praying for more people to show.

I found out later, it was at about this time that Greg Surratt leaned over to my wife and said, "This is what church planting is all about!" It was time to earn our stripes...

Over the next 30 minutes more people began to stroll in. By the time the event was to start, we had nearly filled the room. God came through and the night went on.

We opened with worship, Greg said some wonderful things about us, and then I got up and pitched my heart out! Between each element we rolled videos of various things I had starred in during my time at Seacoast. It was all very touching. Everyone seemed to enjoy themselves and we received a generous offering to help start The Net.

At the end of the night, Greg gathered everyone around us to pray over our venture. One of our small group members (Tim McLain) was there that night and later described the scene to me in an email like this:
I was up in the [balcony] with [my daughter] Emily when Greg asked everyone to stand around you and pray for you guys.. I wish you could have been up there with me. What an absolutely awesome sight to look down and see a group of believers with so much faith and love for someone and their mission.
Selina and I sat in bed that evening discussing the way things turned out. She asked if I was pleased... I replied, "More than I ever expected." We are right where we need to be and it never has felt so good.