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February 2009
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Sunday Recap

IMG_0226 This weekend was worship leader swap - I went to the Bluffton Campus and Clay came to the Island campus. I took our Island band with me and we led worship for the Saturday night service and the 2 Sunday morning services. Pastor Jeff shared a VERY powerful message on "Jehovah - Shalom - The God of Peace." We had between the 2 campuses about 35 people accept Christ. God was MOVING in a huge way here!

Our Island Campus is very intimate, Starbucks-meets-church- seats about 100. Our Bluffton Campus is your typical worship center - large stage, image mag - seats about 500.  It was the 1st time our Bluffton Campus had heard our Island team (I led there before we started the Island campus 18 months ago). I played acoustic on all the songs, except the last 2 which I played keys. We had a male singer, electric guitar, drums, viola, cello, and flute. I was so proud of my boys Sam and Rob (high schoolers!) on cello and viola - they held the bottom end great (as we are without a bass player right now).  Each campus is very autonomous in our worship services including song choices, so I chose songs that both campuses knew and taught them one new one that we do on the Island campus - "How He Loves."   Here was our setlist:

"Sing Sing Sing"
"Awesome is the Lord"
"O Praise Him (All this for a King)"
"How He Loves"
"Amazing Grace (My Chains are Gone)"
"How He Loves" - Chorus only

I've had a couple of e-mail this morning from people in Bluffton who really enjoyed the service. It was a great team building time for us as we had a lot of time to talk and get to know one another better. It was a blast! I'm sure it won't be our last swap weekend.

Meet me at Fred's for more Sunday recaps!


"Harmony Scroll" by Jane Bellows

In a recent blog, I talked about this being the new focus of my life. With that, God has shown me some very personal things lately that have made this concept VERY real to me. This is something SO POWERFUL that He is teaching me about my life right now and I feel His leading to share it with others. With God's direction, I am praying through leading a community group for women on the Island that explores this concept of life and how God's Word gives us great instruction on doing it. The group will simply be called "Harmony" and that is as far as God has given me direction. Please pray with me about what this looks like and pieces of the puzzle coming together for this.

What does harmony look like to you?

What's up?

My posts have been rare lately. Blogging will always take a BIG backseat to my family, my ministry, and my music and all 3 of those have been SMOKIN' BUSY lately! Here's a few things I want to share.

  • My acoustic skills have taken a HUGE upswing. It's been a year now that I have been leading worship with the acoustic and I am FINALLY not nervous about it.
  • I love my band...we are rocking it out at the Core Campus in Bluffton this weekend.  We are songwriting together now and I AM LOVING IT!
  • My 2 year-old son now sings "Sing Sing Sing" at the top of his lungs in the car.
  • My almost 5 year-old daughter now prays "A Big Girl Prayer" and thanks God for her toys all the way up to her mommy and daddy.
  • This is first March in 3 years I am not having to move!
  • We are working on our first Art show at our campus that will premier on Easter Weekend. I am submitting a few photographs of the Island.
  • I have been LOVING our 40 Days of Prayer journey that we have been doing via our campus blog. It has been a spiritual highlight for me during this Easter season.

listening while doing

I know God is up to something in my life right now.  I'm having these "moments" of introspection and that typically means HE something that HE really wants to tell me, but I have to listen. I mentioned last week that I am working on being a child of God first, a servant to others second, and a musician third - in that order. But, I am also praying that I will listen more and do less so that I can hear HIS heart for me, my family, my ministry, and my music. If Martha had a twin, it would be me! I heard someone say that life is not about finding balance, but finding harmony. I know God created me with this insatiable passion of doing and serving, but I need to listen WHILE I am doing.

Do you tend to be a listener or a doer? Do you struggle with finding the harmony?

BTW - I'm glad loswhit is back in the blogosphere again, but he really messed me up with this post the other day. Check it out!

Little Leaders

417s3bwTK5L._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA240_SH20_OU01_ I'm listening to Louie Giglio's book "I Am Not but I know I AM"  from a few years back on my ipod during my workout. I was so struck today by this chapter describing John the Baptist. He gets the ball rolling for God's Son, he baptizes the Son of God, then Jesus takes a good bit of his followers. How would we feel about that? Louie describes John the Baptist as a "Little Leader" because John saw his role to decrease and prepare the way for the Son of God....that was his goal. I really thought about that.  Is it my goal to decrease and let the Son of God increase even if that means I have to take a back seat?  When John's followers "brought it to his attention" that he was losing followers to Jesus, John's reply was, "He must increase, but I must decrease. " (John 3:30) Are we comfortable when others succeed? As church leaders, are we "a tad bit jealous" when another church hits a home run? How much of my time is spent on "positioning" myself  instead of seeing how much I can take myself out of the equation so that Christ is honored and not me? We all need encouragement and it's nice to get kudos, but, if we are living for that....just think about it.

Do you want to be a "Little Leader?"

Top 5 Ways Your Gigs are improving

I give credit to my friend and fellow musician here on the Island, Andy Pitts, for this blog post today based on a recent conversation.

#5  You have so many gigs that your day job is suffering.

People actually know you from the 1 or 2 bands you play in... not from the 5 -8 restaurants you used to make your money from playing "mood music."
#3 You bring one instrument to your gigs. You don't have to drive around with a 5-piece rhythm section in your car because...WHO KNOWS what instrument will be needed because, well... WHO KNOWS who is actually showing up for the gig.

#2  The Restaurant owner pays you and then lets you go home after you've played for 30 minutes because it is 40 degrees outside and you are trying to create a mood on your acoustic while dealing with frostbite.
#1  You are not asked to play every Irish drinking song you know in the St. Patty's Day Parade on a float for 3 hours!

Sunday Recap

We began a new series this week (well actually, version 2.0 because we did this last summer and it was awesome!) called "A.K.A. GOD" which explores the Names of God. Yesterday was Jehovah Rapha "The God Who Heals."  We had an amazing response time where we asked people to come forward to be anointed with oil and prayed over by our elders if they needed healing in any area of their lives. We sang "Healer" as people took communion, gave their offering, prayed alone, and prayed with our was wonderful service. It was nice to just linger on one song at the end and allow people to learn it and then to be able to really sing it out at the end.  Here was the flow...

"Marvelous Light" - Hall
"All Because of Jesus" - Fee
Scripture Reading
"Blessed Be Your Name" - Redman
Time of Response
"Healer" - Hillsongs

Join me at Fred's for more Sunday Recaps...

What I Learned at Unleash

3405513 This past week, our staff traveled in 2 unmarked white vans :) to Anderson, SC for NewSpring Church's one-day conference, UNLEASH. This was our 2nd year attending this as a staff so there were a lot of things that were repeats, but definitely one "heart" thing that I wanted to share.

Lee McDerment's session on the heart of a worship leader really hit me where I am right now.  Lee has been in a portable situation with a handful of people to where he is today leading thousands in worship every week in their own facility.  I appreciated his honesty and transparency. To be honest, I don't need more "how to" in my life.  I need encouragement and that it was he gave us. He shared something so simple that I have written it down in my journal to read everyday.  My priorities are 1. I am child of God  2. I am a minister to others 3. I am a musician... in that order.  Simple, but very profound. I love being a musician and I love serving others and I am so thankful to be a child of God...but THE ORDER IS IMPORTANT.   It is diffcult in church planting to not be about "doing." It was easier for me when I was in a large church with staff and a ton of volunteers to not be about "doing." In this season of life with young children and a young church, SO much more discipline is required in my life to not let it be about serving and doing.  I am a child of the King, first and foremost! The trip was worth that session for me. I've been pondering this for the last 2 days and asking God what that looks like in my life. Fill in the blank on #3 with what you do (if you're not a musician). Do you need to be reminded of THE ORDER?

New Stage Design pics


IMG_8552 IMG_8556IMG_8549
We took a former library and converted it into a Worship Center last summer.  We painted the ceiling black, added can lights and NEVER use the fluorescent lights...this gives it a more intimate feel. We have 4 Leiko Ellipsoidals to front light the stage (not lit in pics).  It is amazing how focused you can get those lights and not hit the MASSIVE TV's that we use (two 42 inch and one 51 inch in the middle.) We used pipe and drape when we initially set-up the room, but over the last couple of weeks, we hung the drape from rebar in the ceiling and it looks SO much better. We hung 2 Par 64 LED lights on each side of the stage (4 total) this past week and we use 4 Par 64 LED lights on the stage for accent lighting. We added some staging to give it more depth and to bring the cross station more into the room. We lit our 5 purposes banner as well (moving it from the lobby to the stage).  I will say, for hardly any money, we really gave the room a nice "re-do" heading into the Easter season. These pics don't really do it justice (I should have taken them at night.) Even with breaker issues and some slight TV glare from the windows on the left (drapes are not in the budget right now!) I am just ticked pink at how well our room has come together! Of course, once you do this, you think...Hmmm...if I just had 4 MORE LED lights :)

Sunday Recap - SERVE DAY Stories

This video will speak for itself, but it was an amazing day of worship and celebration of what God did in us and through us on both campuses last Sunday. I chose songs of worship that we were very familiar with and that people could REALLY sing!  Here was our service:

"Come Now is the Time to Worship" - Vineyard
"There's No One Like Our God: - Vineyard
SERVE DAY Highlight video (both campuses)
SERVE DAY Panel - testimonies (see video)
"Sing to the King" - Passion
"Everlasting God" - Brenton Brown
Scripture Reading - Matthew 5 :1-16
Time of Response (communion, giving, and  prayer station)
"Amazing Grace/My Chains are Gone"
"God of this City" - Passion ( I did a video loop of pics from our Island projects under the lyrics)

We had 100 percent of our regular attendance on a Sunday participate in Serve Day. This was a defining moment in the life of our new church campus...God be praised.  (BTW - the terrible filming of the panel is all me...Can we say NOT a steady cam?)

Check out Fred's for more setlists!