Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas Everybody

It's been a month since I posted anything. Wow. December has been insanely busy as expected. If there's actually anybody who still reads the blog...we wish you a merry Christmas.

I'll be handing the blog off to Emily after the New Year and she will hopefully do a much better job keeping you posted on our family than I have done. I've got other things coming down the pipe that are requiring my time which are more important than blogging.

Merry Christmas world...May you find the reality of the incarnation of Jesus to be your hope and confidence this Christmas.

John 1:14, "And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth."

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Honduras Trip Pics

Here's some photos from Honduras. The ministry is doing some great things there.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Quick Update

Hey everybody. I'm going back to Honduras tomorrow (Wednesday) thru Saturday. Our church is sending me and one other person to check out a ministry called Hope for Honduras. Pray for me as I go.


Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Video of Luke and Juliana

Here's a video that Becca made of Luke and Juliana playing together a few weeks ago.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Our Kids Are Cute...

Okay, so I've not exactly got an objective opinion about this. Check it out.

Luke got a golf set for his birthday last month. He's actually pretty good. I'll be carrying his bag one day.

Sarah is doing great. Moving on towards 2 months.

Monday, October 15, 2007

The Gospel According to "America's Preacher"

In celebration of last night's 60 Minutes interview with Joel Osteen, I thought I'd post a couple of videos where Joel tells us exactly what he thinks about the gospel.

One of Joel's fan actually calls him on the show and asks him why he won't take a stand where the Scripture takes a stand...

Joel, despite his hold your Bible in the air thingy, has a low view of Scripture. He is unwilling to take his stand on the Word of God. When preachers are unwilling to speak on the authority of God's Word (and say things contrary to it) then guess who's authority they are speaking on??? Their own. As a pastor, that is somewhere that I never want to be. If I can't speak on the authority of God's Word then I have nothing to say.

Here's the big problem. In America WE ARE LOSING THE GOSPEL. When the gospel is gone from our churches, God is gone from our churches. In Isaiah 48:11 God says, "My glory I will not give to another."

Try these on for size...

Acts 4:12, "And these is salvation in no one else, for these is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved."

John 14:6, "Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."

God is glorified through the death of his Son Jesus Christ as the payment for sin. Do not deny God his glory by denying the work of Christ on the cross as the only way God has given for salvation from sin.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Sarah's First Date

Check out this post on Anthony and Jackie's blog...Anthony is our worship pastor...Graham is their son.

Friday, October 05, 2007

Things Kids Say 2

This morning Luke woke up asking where Sarah was. He was concerned about her.

So Emily asked Luke back, "Where is Sarah?"

Luke's response, "In the car." We got in late last night so I guess he thought we left her in the car.

I asked Luke, "What should we do?"

Luke's response, "Get her."

It really is awesome that he loves her. He is very good to her with the exception of an occasional hit.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Help Daddy

This morning as Luke and I were going down our steps in the house, he stopped about 3 steps down and said "Help, Daddy" as he reached his hand up towards me. I took his little hand and we walked down the steps together. That was one of the best moments for me. I looked back at Emily and we just smiled.

Something happened inside of me when my son called out to me for help. I had a longing to answer his cry for help. I wanted to help him as he was calling out to me.

You know the Bible tells us to have faith like a child. As I now have children, that description of about how our faith should be has really come to life in a way I didn't understand before.

We need to cry out to our Heavenly Father, "Help Daddy." Dependence on God is a critical aspect of living the Christian life. Here's a few verses about crying out to God, "Help, Daddy."

Hebrews 4:16, "Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need."

Romans 8:15, "For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, "Abba! Father!"

Psalm 46:1, "God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble."

Psalm 79:9, "Help us, O God of our salvation, for the glory of your name; deliver us, and atone for our sins, for your name's sake!"

Have you called out to God for help today???

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Luke's 2nd Birthday and New Sarah Pics

Luke turns 2 on September 19th. It's been a good two years for him. He is a fantastic big brother to Sarah. Here's some recent pics of Luke.

Luke loves bulldozers and backhoes. He loves digging the dirt and pushing the dirt. Sarah got him a yellow and orange "snort" (that's what Luke calls a backhoe) as a present when he came to visit her at the hospital. It's been the best toy he's ever had. He won't put it down.

This is Sarah's room...

...and her bed...

Playing peek-a-boo...

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Welcome Sarah

SHE'S HERE!!!! Sarah was born on Monday morning. Here's a video. Enjoy...

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Kitchen Broke

Every morning when Luke gets up he walks to the gate in front of the kitchen and says, "Kitchen broke."

The remodel is coming along nicely though. Tomorrow we get counter tops installed and the only thing to do after that is detail work. Yeah.

I'll have lots of pictures for you when it's done.

Still no baby. Later

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

This Crazy Life of Mine

Hey folks...

Sorry I haven't had any posts of substance in a couple of weeks.

If you don't know, our life is insane right now. We're 2 weeks from the baby's birth, and still trying to get everything ready for that. We're in the middle of our kitchen remodel, which should be done next week. We're also in the middle of a couple of painting projects, trying to bring the house a little life.

All that to say that my next post will be when baby Sarah arrives. I'll also put up some pics our newly remodeled and painted house when we finish up.

See you when our daughter arrives.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Congrats to Anthony and Jackie...

The Rosolowskis have a new addition to their family. Click here to see some pics of baby Graham. I get the pleasure of serving with Anthony at Smithville FBC. He's our worship pastor.

Friday, August 17, 2007


You've got to watch this video. I thought driving in Dallas was bad.

Chip...did you experience anything like this when you were in India???

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

First Day of Preschool...

I can't believe this is happening already. We started Luke in a preschool/"mother's day out" this week. It meets on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 8am - 2pm. The teacher said he did really good from 8-12 and then had a major breakdown from 12-2.'s some pics from the first day. Enjoy.

Luke and Juliana at the preschool entrance.

I loved the lighting on this picture (click for bigger image).

Friday, August 10, 2007

Sabbatical Day 4...

Hey everybody. Great day. I got the September series half finished and am looking to completely finish it by the time I leave Camp Linden. This series is going to be awesome. You're not going to want to miss a single Sunday in September.

I spent a good amount of time talking with the camp director here. He's a great guy. Camp Linden is an awesome place. If our church or any group in our church ever wants to take a retreat, the facilities here at Camp Linden are really great for hosting something like that. That's actually one of the reasons the TBC built this conference center and the one at Camp Carson.

See ya soon...

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Luke Pic

I think this is the one of the best Luke pictures Emily has ever taken...

This was at the beginning of 2006 when he was only a few months old.

Sabbatical Day 3...

I have a short update tonight...

Today I made the drive to Camp Linden. I finished reading Treasure Principle this afternoon after arriving and spending a little time talking with the camp director. I went to FBC Lobelville for service tonight.

One other note...I met with Brett for a little while yesterday and we decided to push the Oil Change Outreach back a couple of weeks to Sept. 8th to give us enough time to be fully prepared and enough time to advertise it.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Sabbatical Day 2...

Today was a fantastic day. I got big things done.
  • I met with a missionary who works in Romania. Hopefully FBC will form a missions partnership with this organization and make regular trips to Romania. As I have thought and prayed about how the local church is to go about fulfilling the great commission to the ends of the earth, I have landed at the idea that forming long-term missions partnerships with missionaries who are regularly on the field is the best approach. This allows us to go to the same place and minister with the same people over a long period of time. I think this is much more effective than going on random short-term mission trips to places you'll never go to or see again. The missionary I met with was Bob Ward. Bob was our speaker at FBC in July when I was with our mission team in Arizona and Mexico. You'll be seeing Bob again as we pray about forming this partnership.
  • I got a lot of the legwork done for our September sermon series. This 4-week series is really going to impact your life, as my studying today really impacted me. I hope the rest of this week to really work hard on this series and have it mostly ready to go by the end of the week.

Two other notes...
  • I leave tomorrow for Camp Linden tomorrow. I'm assuming they have internet down there. If I don't post the rest of the week it's because I can't hook my computer up to the internet.
  • If you go to FBC Smithville and you're reading this, tell members of the church who don't know about my blog what the web address is so they can keep up with me this week.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Sabbatical Day 1...

Thank you FBC Smithville for this sabbatical week. It's Monday evening. Here's a some of things I did today...

I read and meditated in the Psalms. I love how the emotions of the psalmists come pouring through their writings. It's beautiful.

I read a big chunk of Ed Stetzer's book Comeback Churches. I look forward to finishing this book and reading / discussing it with the staff.

I spent time in prayer. I prayed through about half of the prayer requests that you gave me last Wednesday. I prayed for the church. I prayed for the staff.

And speaking of the staff...I'll leave you with this pic of the 3 of us at our July 4th cookout gathered around the grill doing what men do.

I feel like God has really blessed FBC and created a great ministerial team.

Until tomorrow...

Thursday, July 26, 2007

LEC Finally Rolling

Here's some pics of the beginning of site prep work for our church's new Life Enrichment Center.

These signs were sitting on the lot where the building will be built.

Here's a before shot that I took back in January. This building, which was sitting on the lot where the LEC will be built, was torn down earlier this spring.

Here's the current view (7.25.07) after a couple of days worth of dirt work. They've still got to build the lot up a bit b/c it has a lot of slope in it.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Stand: A Call for the Endurance of the Saints

That's the theme of the Desiring God 2007 National Conference. I really want to go to this conference. It's going to be incredible. But considering that I'll have a 2 week old baby at the time, I feel that the best choice is definitely to stay home and listen to the podcasts as they come out. :)

The theme, as you can tell by the post title, is endurance in the Christian life. The goal is a life devoted to testifying to the greatness of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and the reward is Christ himself as he says to the faithful, "Well done good and faithful servant. Enter into the joy of your master."

The speaker lineup includes:

Here's a video about the need for endurance in the Christian life...

Here's a video of John Piper answering the question, "Why did you choose these speakers for the conference on endurance?".

Sunday, July 15, 2007

6 Years

Yesterday (July 14th) Emily and I celebrated our sixth wedding anniversary. Yesterday was also my parents' 34th wedding anniversary. (When Emily and I chose our wedding date I didn't even know it was my parents anniversary.)

We went to Ristorante Volares in the Opryland Hotel last night. Nice place. The Opryland Hotel is really awesome. I'd love to stay there, but rooms are about $400 per night.

Today is day number one of our 7th year of marriage, we've got a 21 month old son and we've got a daughter who is due to be with us in 2 months and 1 day. God has blessed Emily and I much.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Like Father, Like Son (100th Post)

I'm celebrating my 100th post with a couple of pictures from a swim party earlier this summer. Can you see the resemblance? Who looks like who?

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Arizona/Mexico Report

Here's the entrance to the community where we served all week. The community is called Cuauhtemoc. There's about 400-500 people who live there. There's only one Christian church in this community. We helped to work on the building that the church is using. The only other church there is a Catholic one. They only have services about once per quarter. The catholicism is very cultic in Mexico. They have a lot of mini-shrines with statues in them on the sides of the road where they go and pray to different people.

These are some of the kids who came to our VBS. We had about 50 kids each day.

This is our team with the pastor (Roberto) of the church in Cuauhtemoc and his wife (Chayito).

This is Tim, Jennifer, and Christian Scarbrough. They are the founders of Living Water Ministry, based in Naco, AZ. Naco is a border town between Arizona and Mexico. Cuauhtemoc is about a 20 minute drive into Mexico from Naco. They have restarted the only church in Naco, AZ that had previously been closed down for the last few years. The Scarbroughs hosted us for the week and allowed us to stay in their church in Naco.


We made it back from Arizona/Mexico last night. The internet was down for the whole week after my first post so I didn't get to put any pics up. We had a major lightning storm that knocked it out. I'll get some pics up tonight.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Arizona Update 1

Hey everybody. It's Wednesday morning in Arizona.

Flights were good on Monday although we did have a cancelled flight. But we made it on the next plane. When we got here Monday afternoon we drove down to Cuauthemoc, Mexico to see the church we would be working on and where we would do Bible School. Tuesday morning our big van had some major problems which were finally fixed after 5 trips to the parts store, so we spent the morning doing some work here at the church in Naco, AZ where we are staying. In the afternoon we went to Cuauthemoc and did our first day of Bible School. We had about 50 kids show up. I'll try for some pictures in the next day or so.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Well Said...


You need to watch this video. This is Ed Stetzer at the SBC annual convention yesterday. Stetzer is the president of LifeWay research, the research division of the SBC.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

June Blog Break

I'll be taking a blog break for the month of June. It's going to be a crazy busy month. We've got VBS at church starting next week and I'm leading my first ever mission trip that leaves on June 25th. I've been on a lot of mission trips, but I've never led one. It's a lot of work to get it together. We're going to Naco, Arizona and Cuauthemoc, Mexico. We're partnering with Tim and Jennifer Scarbrough through Living Water Ministries.

I might have an occasional post, but for the most part I'll be back in July.

Friday, May 25, 2007

Things Kids Say

Luke is really starting to talk and be able to understand what we are a degree. Today was our long trip back from Orlando. (good vacation)

Emily asked Luke while we were riding, "Are you awake?"

Luke's answer, "No."

I asked Luke, "Do you know what 'awake' means?"

Luke's answer, "No."

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Lost Season Conclusion

Well...I would give the 2 hour conclusion of Lost an overall positive rating.

  1. too many commercials...during the second half of the first hour the commercials were coming about every 4-5 minutes...i know, i know, that's what DVR's are for
  2. they killed didn't have to lock himself in the flooding room when he could have walked out the door and closed it behind him
  3. how many lives does that crazy one-eyed guy have? they've killed him twice in the past few weeks and he keeps coming back...give me a break
  1. the flashback with bearded Jack totally had me was actually a flash forward...very nice
  2. they are really developing John Locke to be Jack's nemesis...he's practically a superhero the way his body heals itself
  3. the overall storyline of the show is developing nicely
  4. the ending with future Jack and Kate was great, but you know that they're not actually going to get rescued from the phone call to that boat off the island anytime soon b/c there's 3 seasons left, so...can they change their future???
  5. Emily wanted me to note that she disliked the ending b/c she wanted Jack and Kate to get together
  6. It was cool to see Ben get beat up and to see the girl embrace her real mom
  1. John and Ben will return to the others and John will become the leader of the others
  2. it will become Jack vs. John
  3. Desmund will be the real hero of the story...he's just too cool
  4. Ben was actually right about the boat...something bad will come from it
What do you think???

Luke, Balls, and Water

Luke has always had a love for balls and water. Well he really went crazy yesterday. We played mini golf. The lady at the desk told us to take some extra balls with us. I guess she had seen her share of parents have to come back for extra balls after their kid chunked it in the water. Well...she was more than right. Em and I made 3 or 4 saves and Luke actually got 2 tossed in the water.

Yesterday afternoon when we were at the pool Luke decided to take up his hobby again. There is a small lake right next to the pool we were swimming at. Luke decided he needed to toss a ball in that lake also...only we didn't take a ball to the pool. So Luke grabbed another kid's ball, ran to the rail, and chunked it over. Nice touch.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Live from Orlando...

We're hanging out in Orlando this week. We've had some fun times already. I thought I'd post a few pics from the first two days.

The two most beautiful people I know...

Swimming time...

Watch out for the dragon...

If you've never been to Downtown's pretty neat. The dragon in the picture behind me and Luke is made out of Legos. It's impressive.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

It's All about You...

Emily and I had a great Monday and Tuesday at the TBC new pastor orientation conference. The conference was at the Linden Valley conference center. Nice place owned by the TBC.

On to the point of this post...

One of the devotionals that I heard there hit on a theme that is so dominant in American Evangelicalism that we don't even know it exists. It is the very air we breathe. No one thinks about breathing. It's just a part of life. So what is it I'm talking about???


The devotion was from Jeremiah 29:11, "For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for wholeness and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope."

If you notice I highlighted the words "for you." The speaker at the devotional time really keyed in on these words. He talked about the importance of those two words in the verse. He talked about how God has all of these specific, individualized plans for each one of us.

I hate listening to this type of stuff. God does not have a billion personalized wills for each and every Christian out there. God's will is not all about you. God has one will and each one of us is to find our complete fulfillment by aligning ourselves with God's will.

Folks, be careful about ripping verses out of context. Jeremiah 29:11 read in context would never produce an individualistic interpretation. If you read Jeremiah chapter 29 you would find that verse 11 is part of a letter written to the whole Jewish community in the Babylonian exile. So in verse 11 the words "for you" are referring to the entire community that is in exile.

Bringing that up to today would mean that God knows the plans he has for us as the community of God. It's all about God, his will, and we are fulfilled when we find ourselves in his will.

Thursday, May 10, 2007


Okay, I can't handle the pink any longer, so this is my new look.

We're going to Dollywood tomorrow. I'm pumped. I think I was in high school the last time I went. That's been 11 years.

Monday, May 07, 2007

Why the PINK?!?!?!

We found out today that we're having a GIRL!!!!!

To celebrate I'm temporarily changing my blog to a lovely pink color.

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Congrats to Anthony and Jackie

This morning, FBC Smithville voted overwhelmingly to bring Anthony Rosolowski onto the pastoral staff as the pastor of music and worship. I'm really excited to have Anthony coming (he won't start till end of June). He's going to bring a great dynamic to the church.

As a congratulatory blog present to Anthony and Jackie I'm adding a sidebar link to their blog.

We have a really young church staff (which I think is good). I'm the old man around the place at 29 years. Brett and Anthony are both young kids at only 27 years.

Please pray for FBC Smithville that our church staff will gel, and that we can proclaim the greatness of God's name in our city and county and wherever else God leads us. I'm excited for the future to see how God works.

Friday, May 04, 2007

A Day in the House

I went to the legislative session of the Tennessee House yesterday. I was the chaplain of the day...a nice honor, but completely ceremonial. Anywho...I enjoyed the day. It was my first time to ever go to a Senate or House session. It was complete chaos on the floor. It took me forever to figure out what was going on.

I'm sure I'll be hearing from President Bush any day now so that I can be on his spiritual advisory board :)

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Don't Waste Your Life

There's a fantastic little book called Don't Waste Your Life written by John Piper that I would like to recommend to everybody. In the end you don't want your life to be wasted. This book does a good job helping you see the right perspective on living this life so that you don't waste it.

Here's the website by the same name. On the website you can order a paper copy of the book or you can download a .pdf of the book for free, and they've got some great little video podcasts that come out about once per week.

Happy reading. If you've already read this book, what do you think???

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Dove Awards

Chris Tomlin won 6 Dove Awards this week. Here's a quote (from Baptist Press) by Tomlin about all his awards.
"I am overwhelmed by the whole thing," said Tomlin, who deflected the praise. "I am grateful for the honors, but at the end of the day that's not what impresses God.... He must increase and I must decrease. I know this is nothing that I do; I just know that the presence and favor of God is with me."
Let me stir the pot a little bit.

I'm really glad for Tomlin's remarks, but still, I've never really been a fan of the Dove Awards b/c there's nothing like a bunch of Christians getting together on national TV and awarding and honoring themselves.

Let's just try one passage on for size, Luke 17:7-10 (ESV)...
“Will any one of you who has a servant plowing or keeping sheep say to him when he has come in from the field, ‘Come at once and recline at table’? 8 Will he not rather say to him, ‘Prepare supper for me, and dress properly, and serve me while I eat and drink, and afterward you will eat and drink’? 9 Does he thank the servant because he did what was commanded? 10 So you also, when you have done all that you were commanded, say, ‘We are unworthy servants; we have only done what was our duty.’”
Any thoughts??? Don't be too hard on me.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Praying for the Rosolowski's

FBC Smithville has been looking for a music and worship pastor. We've found a fantastic couple...Anthony and Jackie Rosolowski. Could I ask you all to be praying for them as they begin to make their way in our direction? They live in Raleigh, NC right now as Anthony is finishing up at Southeastern Baptist Seminary.

They'll be spending the weekend of May 4th-6th with us, and our church will vote to call them here on Sunday, May 6. I remember how nervous I was during the time Emily and I were doing the same thing last summer to come here and pastor.

So, pray that God will work all things out smoothly for them and that this will be a fantastic time of joy and peace for FBC Smithville.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Between Two Worlds (ch. 2)

Chapter 2 – Contemporary Objections to Preaching

Stott lists the 3 primary objections to preaching in today’s world…the anti-authority mood, TV, and a contemporary atmosphere of doubt
  • The Anti-Authority Mood
    • Thesis of this point is that we live in a time with an unprecedented level of questioning the authorities that be. I agree with this. Stott offers a Christian response to the anti authority mood. Here are a few…
      • We need to remember the nature of humanity. We have always been in rebellion. That does not mean preaching is useless.
      • We need to remember the doctrine of revelation. He writes quoting another author, “A sermon by its very nature is a revelation, not an exhortation.” I could not disagree more. I think the Scriptures are the complete revelation of God, and our sermons are based on the revelation of God but are not themselves revelation. The purpose of a sermon is life change, exhortation.
      • We need to remember the locus of authority. Preachers themselves are not the authority…the Word of God is.
      • We need to remember the dialogical character of preaching. Preaching should be a silent dialogue between the preacher and congregation. As the sermon raises questions in the mind of the congregation the preacher should know his audience well enough to be aware of those questions ahead of time and attempt to answer them.
  • TV’s ill affects on listening to sermons. Two of his main points about TV and its affect on preaching…
    • TV tends to make people intellectually uncritical. This is the critical point…the inability to engage by thinking. I think this is so true. TV is too easy to consume. You only need the intelligence of a lump of mashed potatoes. On the other hand, it takes hard work to dive into the Scriptures. Speaking about the preacher’s need to reckon with their audience, Stott writes, “We can no longer assume that people either want to listen to sermons, or are indeed able to listen.” Wow.
    • TV tends to make people morally disordered. Stott writes, “…our understanding of what is ‘normal’ begins to be modified. Under the impression that ‘everybody does it’, and that nobody nowadays believes much in God or in absolutes of truth and goodness, our defenses are lowered and our values imperceptibly altered.”
  • Contemporary atmosphere of doubt
    • Stott writes, “The contemporary loss of confidence in the gospel is the most basic of all hindrances to preaching.”
    • He compares the current situation to the apostle Paul’s statement about the gospel in Romans 1:14-16 (under obligation, eager, not ashamed) by writing, “At present the church’s attitude to evangelism might be summarized in exactly contrary terms: ‘no enthusiasm, little sense of obligation, and considerable embarrassment.’”
    • Stott offers a handful of solutions. His first is that we need to distinguish between the terms assurance, conviction, presumption and bigotry. I think this is critical b/c it is a good and right thing to speak up when you have done your research and are indeed speaking the truth (assurance and conviction). That being opposed to presumption (speaking w/o truly researching or knowing) and bigotry (blind and obstinate opinions).

Thursday, April 12, 2007

This is Hilarious...

I said in the previous post that Emily had been sick for a while...that included a lot of throwing up. During the daytime when I was at work Luke would follow Emily into the bathroom and watch her throw up. So the other day Luke and I were in the bathroom and he walks over to the toilet, bends over, makes a big throw up sound, and then looks up at me and laughs.

We can now ask Luke, "What does mommy do when she gets sick?" and in response Luke will look at you and make the throw up sound. Yes...our son now walks around the house making a pukeing noise.

Don't ever believe that your kids aren't learning as they watch you.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

I'm Back for One Post

I haven't posted for a while b/c there has been a ton of sickness in our family lately. Luke is actually doing better. You can pray for Emily. She's doing better but she's lost 12 pounds in the past week from her sickness.

I'll be out for about another week b/c Emily is going to a pastor's wives conference in Dallas, and I'll have Luke for 5 days by myself.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

Quick NCAA Question

When the NCAA tournament started a couple of weeks ago I had 63 of my favorite teams in the tournament. When the Final Four started on Saturday, I had 3 favorite teams remaining. Now, 62 of my favorite teams have lost and only one remains. So here's my question...

Will somebody please beat Florida???????

I will be pulling hard for OSU (even though they beat Tennessee).

Sunday, March 25, 2007

What Cars Have You Driven???

What are all the cars you have driven in your life, what color were they, and which has been your favorite?

I got my driver's liscense in 1994. Here's the list of cars I've had since then...

1989 Mazda 626 - maroon
1994 Nissan Stanza - gray
1997 Saturn sl2 - forrest green
1999 Ford Ranger - deep red
1995 Volvo 850 - green

My wife and I now have...

1999 Ford Ranger (same car as above, we traded the Volvo back and forth with my parents)
2006 Honda Odyssey - gold

Along the way, since we've been married Emily also has driven...

1996 Honda Accord - silver
1998 Toyota Avalon - white

That's 8 different cars in 13 years of driving. That's a lot of stinking cars. My favorite has been my truck, the Ranger.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Between Two Worlds...

Okay folks...I read a lot of books and I'm gonna start writing some small interactions (reviews?) about some of them. The reason I'm writing is to help me think as I read (this is important). I just finished chapter 1 of John Stott's Between Two Worlds. This is a book about preaching.

Between Two Worlds
The Challenge of Preaching Today
written by John Stott

Chapter 1 – The Glory of Preaching: A Historical Sketch

The goal of this chapter was to take a survey of the preaching of the Word of God, its high regard and great importance, throughout church history. As such, there was not much argument to this chapter since it was an introductory survey.

Let me list a few notable quotations from the chapter:
  • From Chrysostom (4th-5th c.) bishop of Constantinople speaking about the healing of the body of Christ, “[the] only means and one way of cure has been given us…and that is teaching of the Word…without it nothing else will avail.”
  • From Martin Luther speaking about the power of the Word of God in combating against the papacy during his trials, “I simply taught, preached, wrote God’s Word: otherwise I did nothing. And when, while I slept, or drank Wittenberg beer with my Philip and my Amsdorf, the Word so greatly weakened the papacy that never a Prince of Emperor inflicted such damage upon it. I did nothing. The Word did it all.”
  • From Stott, “It stands to reason that every recovery of confidence in the Word of God, and so in a living God who spoke and speaks, however this truth may be defined, is bound to result in a recovery of preaching. This must be why so many great preachers have belonged to the reformed tradition.
  • An observation from Stott, “So we come to the 1960s, 70s and 80s. The tide of preaching ebbed, and the ebb is still low today. At least in the western world the decline of preaching is a symptom of the decline of the Church. An era of skepticism is not conducive to the recovery of confident proclamation.”
  • This book was written in 1982. I wonder what Stott’s evaluation would be 25 years later? I’m sure he would be very proud of Joel Osteen’s expository sermons.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Latest Luke Pics

Here's some recent photos for your enjoyment. I can't seem to rotate the images.

At the Chattanooga Aquarium

Em and Luke with the giant crabs.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

What Is the Deal with This?

So I read this article on the Baptist Press News (Southern Baptist news agency). It's a rant about some newer churches (some SBC) in the Acts29 church starting network that don't preach total abstinence from alcohol.

But here's the curious part. I found the following paragraph near the beginning of the article, and I feel compelled to comment on it.

"The emerging church movement is diverse and difficult to generalize. However, the mix of influences includes: postmodernism (a focus on sense-making through the various mediums of culture); Calvinism ala John Piper; and for some, Christian liberty, as granted by their scriptural interpretation, to drink alcohol and engage in other cultural activities that many Southern Baptists eschew based on opposing scriptural interpretation."

So the author is trying to give a loose definition for a Southern Baptist audience about what an emergent church is (that's a really big task to undertake, as the author notes). The 3 major influences he claims that make up emergent churches are: 1.) postmodernism 2.) Calvinism 3.) Christian liberty.


1.) a church cannot adhere to postmodernism b/c Christianity is directly opposed to postmodernism. Christianity and Christ claim absolute truth while postmodernism denies all absolute truth claims. Postmodernism and Christianity do not mix. If a group of people hold a postmodern ideology then they cannot call themselves a church.

But to clarify and comment on what the article seems to say in it's parenthetical statement about postmodernism...Engaging the culture does not equal being postmodern.

2.) Why is the author equaling Calvinism with emergent, like Calvinism is a bad thing? Did he know that many of the SBC founding fathers held to a Calvinistic theology and that we currently have traditional SBC churches that are Calvinist?

Calvinism is a solid theological position grounded in the absolute truth of the Scriptures. I am not a Calvinist, but I recognize it's conservative nature and I appreciate the lives of many of the great men in church history who held this theological view.

Here's the big deal...First the author says emergent churches are postmodern (denying absolute truth) and then says they are Calvinistic (claiming absolute truth of Scripture). Somebody help me figure this out.

3.) So the author would deny that we have Christian liberty to drink alcohol? I don't drink alcohol, but this drives me crazy. Why in the world is this always a recurring battle in Southern Baptist circles? I want people to stop fighting over this issue. We're not getting anywhere and nobody is ever winning the battle. We just fight and fight and fight, slaughtering our own while the world is going to hell. there's my rant. What do you think?

Monday, March 19, 2007

Luke's Stunt...

Yesterday Emily was in our bedroom cleaning up for a few minutes and she thought after a few minutes that she hadn't heard Luke doing anything (usually he makes a lot of strange noises as he plays). She found him sitting on the kitchen table eating cake (all over his face) and holding a kitchen knife in one hand.

We had no clue he had the ability to climb up on the kitchen table.

I think life's about to get interesting.

More Luke pics coming soon!!!

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Flying High

I got to fly an airplane yesterday. I went with a friend who has a private pilot's license. We were up there and he said, "It's all yours," and just let me take it. That was pretty fun.

I took some aerial photos of the lot where the church's new Life Enrichment Center (LEC) is going to be built. You can see the church building on the upper right of the picture. The gray building across the street from the church is going to be torn down today, and that whole lot is going to be where the new building goes.

Foto Phun 2

We had another snow last week. The first pic is with a long exposure and no flash.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Baby Bass 2

Emily is pregnant. Due date is Sept. 16th. That's 3 days before Luke turns 2.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Desiring God Pastors Conference Recap

I just made it back to the metropolis of Smithville a few minutes ago. I have been at the Desiring God 2007 Conference for Pastors since Sunday. It was a fantastic time of worship, and hearing encouragement from the Word of God, and buying books, and a million other things.

I got to meet and talk with John Piper. He's the preaching pastor at Bethlehem Baptist Church and the founder of Desiring God ministries. I've read several of his books but it was cool to get to meet him. was really, really, really cold in Minnesota. It got down to -20 degrees at one point while I was there in Minneapolis. And during the day when the sun was out warming things up...the temperature rose all the way to -3 degrees. When I got back to Tennessee tonight and it was in the +20's...I thought it felt rather tropical.

A Few Random Thoughts Coming Away from the Conference

- I really enjoy preaching. It is a great honor to be a pastor and have people give me 30 min. of their time every week. I don't treat that lightly.

- I really do deserve hell. Something inside us kinda feels like we were worthy of a little grace...that heaven wouldn't be quite as good if we weren't there...that we're not really THAT bad so that we deserve eternity in hell for our sin. God is obligated to give us a shot at heaven isn't he? Yeah right. We demand that God be fair and just with us. If God were fair and just we'd all be hell bound. These thoughts on hell come from studying about the holiness of God for the past several days.

- God is big. Exalt God in your life and watch what happens. God intensely desires that he be glorified. Live your life to glorify your big God!!!

Friday, February 02, 2007

Train Them Early...

Foto Phun

It snowed today in Smithville. All of these are near our house.