Monthly Archives: May 2011

Powerless

So its dark, hot, and too quiet. I don’t know which of these things is worse.

Our power went out almost two hours ago. The weather was ridiculous for about 10 minutes and during the crazy wind and rain everything went black.

Now we are just waiting on the lights to come back, most importantly, the AC. We aren’t too concerned. The power company said we can expect power to return by 1AM. Hopefully they are correct, because our freezer has probably thawed and I am wasting my cell battery by writing this.

Just sitting here in the silence has me thinking… Don’t you hate it when that happens? Here are some random questions that are floating around in my head.

What’s up with all the crazy weather across the world?

How did/do people live without power?

Some people live without clean water and power. How is that even possible?

Our house smells like cookies because all the candles we have are sugar cookie scented, because that’s Jes’ favorite. We should probably invest in non scented candles for next time.

There are only three things to do at night without power… read, write, and play with cards. I don’t see how more card tricks weren’t created back before we had power.

It’s no wonder why old people go to bed early.

And wouldn’t you know it…LET THERE BE LIGHT! Perfect timing for the power to come back.

It’s times like this that make you appreciate thing you usually take for granted. It’s funny how we forget how blessed we are until something is taken away or broken. This has been a subtle reminder of something I learned several years ago. God uses disappointment, loss, and heart break to show us something that we would never have noticed without it. Often we are too busy, self righteous, or just too complacent to see God trying to show us something. When something goes wrong or something we take for granted in our lives is suddenly taken from us we realize we are powerless, we become vulnerable and we become more receptive. That is why God uses those times to mold us, teach us, and show us something we may never see in a regular moment in life.

I am going to be going to bed and thanking God for all the little luxuries we have in life and praying for all the people in the world who do not have them. That is what God has been showing me in the silence and stillness of this powerless night.

What has God shown you in the dark moments?

Panther’s Future?

I don’t know if this is a good thing or a bad thing, but Cam is already having a good time as a Panther.

End of the World?

Conversation with Craig Stone

hahaha

Tricks are for kids!

Check out this video of me doing magic at Movies in the Park last night. It was an amazing night with around 2000 of my closest friends in Huntersville. Radiant Life went above and beyond to create such an amazing event for the community. There will be more pictures and video up of all the great fun.

My friend Josh Conklin shot this last night so thanks to him for being the on point media guy all night. I’m glad he survived the NASCAR experience at the end of the night 😉

When I’m Bored

This is what happens when I’m bored. Last night my wife was watching one of her dumb shows on TV and I didn’t know what to do. So I grabbed the camera and decided to have fun with myself. There are no camera tricks or fancy edits. I just edited a bunch of clips of me jamming for the camera together and this is what I got.

I hope you enjoy. If you are looking for some other of my magic videos click here.

This Friday! Don’t miss it!

I am so looking forward to this!

Bring your family and friends and come have a great time with us! I will be doing magic and there will be tons of family friendly activities, give-a-ways, and snacks. See you there!

Buskapalooza

Last Friday night was so much fun. Buskapalooza is a documentary that is being filmed on the streets of Charlotte by April Denee Check it out here. For one night, all the street performers in the area set up around Trade and Tryon in Charlotte to support the arts and support the documentary.

Magic, dancing, painting, balloon animals, bands, singers, jugglers, acrobats, fire eating, etc…

It was crazy. Check out some of the pictures from the event by clicking here. There are some great pictures that capture the evening like the one above of my good friend Craig Stone.

At the end of the night Mike G and I walked up to watch Eric Treese eat fire. Check out the video I shot just outside of Pheonix and Bar Charlotte.

I’m a Momma’s Boy! (Mother’s Day Edition)

The measure of a relationship is usually the answer to the question, “Where would my life be without this person?” Usually the richer the relationship the harder this is to answer. When asking this question about a mom the answer is simple. Nowhere…

I don’t get caught up too much in “hallmark holidays”. I’ve never been a big fan of Valentine’s day. I’m not a mom, a dad, a veteran, a president, and even if I lived in Canada I’m not a boxer. So this weekend I often use to reflect on the entire year. I think of my mom and how I have treated her, not just on Mother’s Day, but every day. So I am going to do that in writing. First I need to let you know something about me…

I am a momma’s boy!

I have never been ashamed to admit my love for my mother. Sometimes I even feel that I express my appreciation and affection for her more to others than I do to her (like I am probably doing by writing this). So in honor of the greatest mom in the world, here are some random Mother’s Day thoughts:

At this point in my life, my mom has shaped my heart, my morals, and my beliefs more than any person. My relationship with Jesus (hopefully) defines my heart, but without my mother that relationship would be drastically different.

They say you marry your mother. That is definitely true in my situation. Jes’ heart embodies the overflowing compassion and sometimes scarring vulnerability of my mom. From the first time they met I felt a connection. Oddly enough, it was a defining moment in my decision to marry Jes.

My mom is not perfect, but she is the perfect mom. I think my mom was just what God intended the mother to be. Comfort, servant, love, servant, compassion, servant, encouragement… did I mention servant?

As the years move on and my relationship with my God and my wife grow deeper into existence, they seem to define me more and more. That does not mean that the relationship with my mom defines me less and less. It just shows that my mom helped lead me into the relationships that God called her to lead me into. She has done her job well. Her job as an encourager, servant, and comforter have changed. They have not lessened, just changed. As her role has changed, her heart has not.

So as I’m sitting here writing this, Jesalyn is driving back from a visit with my mother. My mom continues to serve me by serving my wife. Jesus calls us to be a servant to all. My mom taught/teaches me this not just with words, but by example. This is why I am not ashamed to say, “I AM A MOMMA’S BOY!”

A Saturday Final Exam!?!?

Really, a final exam on a Saturday morning? What is this world coming to? I am preparing, or should I say procrastinating. I only have two exams this semester, but I am counting the minutes until I am done. There are a couple reasons why I want my class to be over and my grade to be posted. Here is why:

1. I have 4 things occupying my time right now (not including family life and other day to day regular activities) and I need a break from one for at least a week or two so I can focus a little better.

2. I need my grade to post so I can attempt to register for Intro to Org Comm. This class is only offered in the early summer semester and if I can get into it I will only have two semesters left to complete my degree. If I cannot get into this class I will have three semesters left. The class is currently full and I am praying that I can somehow slide into a vacant slot and there is only about 10 days from when my grade posts to when the class will start. Its crazy to think that an entire semester of my life is based on this 10 day window.

3. Exams are an added stress that I do not need. I normally don’t stress about classes and grades, but I will admit that I have been slacking off toward the end of this semester (when it comes to school). My grades have been so good that I haven’t felt a need to put as much time and effort into class. I don’t even know if I can mess up enough on either final to pull me out of the B range, but I have been so used to getting As that I feel like one of those kids I used to hate. You know, the one that cried the first time they got a B on something. I used to hate those kids and now I have become one. I know I will be ok and the tests will be fine, but just being a little ill-prepared adds to the stress factor.

All that to ask this…

Please pray for me over the next week. I am becoming impatient with school. Mostly because there are so many things (priorities) in my life that I am ready to dive into 100%. Its like I’m standing on the starting line to a race. I want the gun to fire so I can take off and give it everything I have, but I also know I haven’t trained myself fully. I know I need to back off the starting line and continue training so that my 100% will get me much further in the race. I know I need to finish my degree to be most effective in life, but it is also keeping me from the priorities, passions, and missions that I want to give my life to.

I know I will finish school in God’s time, but I am praying that God’s time is a semester early.

10 ideas to help with ministry discouragement (by Doug Fields)

I copied this from Doug Fields’ blog at http://www.dougfields.com. It is a great word for everyone. It starts out directed at people in the ministry, but I think these words apply to everyone. Just replace the word “ministry” with “job” or “calling”. The content starts here…

When you say yes to ministry, you also say yes to periods of discouragement. Here are some harsh realities:

• Discouragement is painful.
• Discouragement is untimely.
• Discouragement is lonely.

Be confident that you’re not alone in your hurt (see yesterday’s comments).

Here are 10 ways that you might battle the occasional seasons of discouragement:

1. Find an experienced, but neutral, mentor who will listen to you. My encouragement is to make sure this person is outside your church so your conversation isn’t divisive.

2. Seek to spend time with an upbeat friend who is outside of your youth ministry. The benefit of an upbeat friend is that being with a friend who doesn’t really care about your ministry, but cares about you, can be very refreshing.

3. Realize that not everyone will understand you and your ministry. Actually, it’s fairly safe to state that no one will value your ministry as much as you. Perspective can be insightful.

4. Take a day off. A real day off…a day off of email, a day away from the ministry, a day of rest.

5. Schedule solo time away. Once a quarter take an entire day with your journal and Bible and get away. Solitude can really help.

6. Clear the piles on your desk. Piles can be depressing! Shove everything into a box and deal with it later. A clean desk can make a difference in your attitude.

7. Get some sleep. Even if you don’t think you need more sleep, get some any way.

8. Start in a discouragement journal. Write your thoughts out. Write out the discouragement journey from A-Z. It’s amazing when you look back and see God taking you thru a discouraging season and it will happen again.

9. Begin an affirmation file. Save the “keepers”… read them when necessary. Being reminded that you’re not hated and/or a loser can help.

10. Pray! You’re not the first leader to bend the ear of God.

Thankfully there is hope in the midst of discouragement, and because the God of the universe is involved, it’s plentiful. Light is out there for the discouraged.

Don’t loose sight of the eternal Light in the midst of the temporary darkness. When discouragement hits you, count on the reality that God will use that season in your life to increase your ministry effectiveness (God doesn’t waste a hurt).

There’s my 10 ideas…please add to the list! Next week I’ll post all your ideas from yesterday and today. I’m anxious to learn from your ideas!

These are such great steps that everyone should follow. I think numbers 1, 2, 4, 6, and 7 are huge in my life. Without doing these things every once in a while I would be so lost. 


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