Conference Shopping


Well, we’re a month into the new position at Sunnybrook and it’s time to start digging into the conference budget I inherited. Just like last year, I’m looking for something different, something fresh. Last year it was WIBO, but this year who knows…

The only certainty at this point is Innovate. The Dirt Conference looks intriguing and I’m really considering making a trip to Echo, but beyond that I’m wide open to suggestion. So how ’bout it…where are you heading this year? I’m ready to start booking a few trips!


10 Things I Learned On My Trip To Granger


I had a great time last Thursday and Friday as I had a chance to head up to Granger Community Church and spend some time with Rob Wegner and Butch Whitmire. Here are the top 10 things (some profound and some not)I learned on my trip to GCC.

10. Rob has some serious “Rockband” giftedness. He destroyed me!

9. As a staff, we need to work with our Sr. Pastor and not around him (even when there’s disagreement)…this is God’s design.

8. The big screen is just as ominous from behind as it is from the front.

7. Great leaders have great people around them. Butch and Rob both have amazing teams.

6. Building a great church is a process that is often difficult and even painful.

5. Rob can throw down some pizza.

4. Butch can throw down some soup.

3. Even big churches struggle to fund vision.

2. Rob and I drive the same car…his is just 10 years newer.

1. Investing in people is a passion of mine…both of these guys are living examples of how to do that.

It was a great trip and well worth the 7 hours on the road…I’m currently in Rockband training and will be asking Rob for a rematch in the near future…count on it!

Innovate Shout Outs

What an incredible conference this year! I came home moved, inspired, exhausted…and changed. I couldn’t have asked for a better experience for my team. There are a ton of people to thank, so here we go…

-First and foremost to my team…It was such a joy to experience Innovate with all of you. Watching you be inspired, moved and challenged was a true blessing to me. I’m honored to serve with each of you and can’t wait to see what God will do next!

DPLUM…Darren my friend, I wish we could see each other more often. You are always such an encouragement to me. Your friendship has been a life changer. It was a blast to have you hang with my team and to get to know yours!

Lindsay…you have totally mad gifts my friend! You and your team are amazing. Thank you so much for making my group feel right at home and for taking such great care of us. Serious “Rocker Quotes” to you and Susan!!!

Butch…I’m continually blown away at how God made our paths cross. You continue to inspire and challenge me. Thank you so much for always being available and for always being willing to pour out so much…see you in November!

Rob…You bleed passion my friend. My entire team was inspired by God’s words through you on Friday. Someday, the mullet will come back…and you and I will lead the charge for follicle relevancy! Thank you for you encouragement in my life.

Kem…You truly inspire me in unbelievable ways….’nuff said!

Tiffany (aka “iStock girl”) – It was great to meet you and “talk shop” for a while. You and iStock are a great blessing!

DC…Finally we meet! You are the genuine article, with a heart for God that is unstoppable. Thanks for all your encouragement through the blog.

Mark W…It was so great to meet you and your hilarious wife! It’s always nice to hang with other former Washingtonians! You are both tremendous.

This could truly go on forever…There were so many conversations, chance meetings and introductions. What amazes me most is that God had 800+ people in one place to hear a message that is so important. Let the talking stop…and the doing begin!

Live At Innovate Pt. 9

Steven Furtick: Innovate Impact II

Prov. 29:18 – “Where there is no vision, the people perish…”

-Have you ever felt that while other’s seem to be advancing in their mission you feel like you’re going back and forth?

-Between the promise and the payoff there is process.

-We forget the process and forfeit the payoff because we faint during the process.

-Being called by God is the promise.

-Becuase David (essentially the king elect) was humble enough to bring cheese and bread to his brothers on the battle line, he was in position to kill Goliath.

-The process is ALWAYS painful.

-Don’t despise the day of small beginnings.

-There’s no shortage of God’s presence in your ministry the shortage is in our ability to trust Him.

-Sometimes we get so smart that we educate ourselves beyond believing that anything is possible with God.

-The process is the point. God is preparing you in the process.

-Believe God’s promises for your life.

Live At Innovate Pt. 8

Kem Meyer: Social Networking Breakout

I had a blast in this breakout session. It was a great chance for questions, stories and sharing. Kem is amazing on this topic and made a crystal clear argument for the necessity of Social networking tools in family and church life. Way to go Kem!

-Social networking helps us develop relational collateral.

-Social networking is a way to give back and share insight.

-Tools like Twitter and Facebook provide incredible opportunities for ministry connection.

-Twitter can be used as an instant focus group.

-Texting is a creative way to stay connected with your kids (speaking their language)

-Consider your audience in regards to blogging. Post according to your main target, but keep in mind the others who may be reading your post.

-Twitter can keep a staff connected and give insight into people that you wouldn’t have seen otherwise.

Live At Innovate Pt. 8 “Innovate Impact”

-An organization is a reflection of its leadership

-Willingness to “get naked”

-The difference between where you are and where God wants you to be is the pain you’re unwilling to endure.

-If an organization is the reflection of its leadership, how critical is it that the leadership is self aware?

-Self awareness is the platform which God begins to work with us on.

-A team environment that allows for that self awareness is critical.

-Craig Groeshel has always has always invited the ability for others to speak into his life. Real, vulnerable.

-Your organization is a reflection of the leadership.

-Be willing to do anything short of sin to reach the lost.

-Come to a place of understanding so that the skills that attract, don’t begin to attack.

-Teams that are formed around each persons unique personalities.

-Your development process begins with then hiring process.

-We process what we see through a filter of who we are.

-Willingness to be vulnerable as leaders with your team.

-What decisions are you unwilling to make, that might be painful, but you know is the right decision?

-Our capacity as leaders will be found at our ability to endure pain.

Live At Innovate Pt.7

Rob Wegner: “Missional Moves”

-“God is good” is the hardest thing for the oppressed people of the world to believe.

-25,000 children will die today.

-What is God’s plan to make it believable that He is good? We are…the local church.

-God has no other plan!

-What is the gospel that Jesus preached?

-It is NOT how you get out of trouble with God.

Mark 1:14-15: The gospel wan an announcement about the Kingdom of God…a news cast to the Roman people.

-Jesus spoke about the Kingdom of God over 100 times in scripture.

-It is the essential world view of Jesus.

Acts 1:3: Jesus appeared after His resurection and spoke again about the Kingdom of God.

-The average Christian will say the Kingdom of God is Heaven or their heart. Neither is incorrect, but each is incomplete.

-The Kingdom of God is the place where the light of Heaven breaks through to earth…right here, right now!

-It starts in our hearts, but needs to spill out unto the earth.

-The Kingdom of God and vision of Jesus is so expansive.

-Mission Move #1: Move from saved souls to saved whole

-Verbal proclamation: Sharing the gospel.

-Demonstration proclamation: Where we begin to act on and meet the needs of the community. (demonstrating the gospel)

-Mission Move #2: From flashlight to laser focus.

-Are churches confusing the great commission with great commotion?

Acts 1:8

-4 spheres of influence: Local Access, Domestic Access, Cross Cultural Access, International Access

-Sphere of prominence: Where God is moving.

-Narrowing the focus dramatically increases impact.

-Narrowing the focus dramatically increases shared focus and ownership.

-Mission Move #3: From professionals to full participation.

-Most churches are not mobilized. Missional activity is outsources to the “professionals” and taken out of the hands of the church called to do the work.

-Obstacles: Fear and Busyness

-Missional moves are about us becoming dangerous. The church in its finest hour when evil begins to tremble…proclaiming that our God reigns!