Texas Little League District 5---What A Week

It's been a busy week around here as we've followed the 11-12 year old Little League All-Stars in their quest to win their pool play and advance to Abilene next week.  With a win tomorrow night over Northern, we'll do just that.

I've had the birds eye view from the press box as I announced each game (2 games a night for 5 nights).  I'm getting pretty good at knowing each team and their names (knowing even their first names when I hear or see just their last names)

Little League is just a part of summer for us.  We enjoy all being together at the park and who can give up a free game.

Let's go Snyder---Beat Northern.

Cupcake Wars! The Real War On Cupcakes

So one of our new "must watch shows" each week is CUPCAKE WARS on Foodnetwork where 4 bakers face off to make the wildest, craziest, tastiest cupcakes on the planet. In the end they have to make 1000 cupcakes in 2 hours ( complete with a large display). It's insane.

But little did I know that the cupcake business is cut throat. Watch the video above and see how they go after each other. Maybe this should have been the basis of the TV show.

TOY STORY 3-- Andy's Going To College (Too Close To Home)

We made it to the theater yesterday to finally see TOY STORY 3 (it's only been out in the theater for two weeks) and I must say that I knew going in it was going to be an emotional ride.

TOY STORY came out in 1995, just after the birth of our second child, and the sequel came out in 1999 just after the birth of our last child. You see that Toy Story has been part of our journey in raising our children for all of these years and like Andy, we'll say goodbye to our oldest next year as she graduates.

Sitting there as they reflected over Andy's short years of playing with his toys certainly took me back to the years of the living room filled with all sorts of plastic things to step on and to avoid, a yard filled with buckets and pails full of sand and enough stuffed animals garnered at carnivals and Christmas' to fill a truck.

All of those are gone now and Andy's recognition that he has outgrown all of these items made me realize that time has passed by so quickly and I didn't think it had done so. Caught up in the mundane of everyday life I didn't realize how fast they had grown  (Daniel has now surpassed me in height and almost to my weight) and how quickly they will be gone.

At the end of the movie Mattie, our middle child, looked over and saw a tear streaking down my face.  She began to giggle but just then Diane reached over and grabbed my hand.  I didn't care--TOY STORY was hitting too close to home.  That's the magic of Toy story--it's the STORY of our lives and that it why it will forever be a movie classic that will speak to all generations.

Congratulations Disney on a fine film to capture the days of our lives.

Do You Have A Flipper?

Thinking back some 15 years in worship ministry when I had to use OVERHEADS for worship with youth and adults, we didn't quite know what to call the position of the person who stood next to the beaming light and magically waved their hands so fast that you never knew that they had changed the slide.  We called them FLIPPERS!  I know, its not an exciting name-but it was practical and descriptive to what they did.

That was cutting edge technology back then and woe to me if I decided to repeat a chorus or bridge and the FLIPPER had already moved that sheet out of the way.

We're getting ready to upgrade to MEDIA SHOUT 4 and seeing all that this technology does now days makes using the overhead look like it was used on the Ark.  Nevertheless, I couldn't do what I do on Sunday morning in leading worship if it weren't for the modern day FLIPPERS who fire the cues and follow us down the path of worship.  I'm forever indebted to their work.  ( I love that in version 4 of Media shout the back projector will not only give us the current verse that we are singing-but it will give us the first line of the next verse so that flow isn't interrupted by the transition--SWEET!)

Here are some suggestions for Worship Software in the church.

Worship Confessional, June 27, 2010

This post is part of Sunday Set List over on The Worship Community blog where worship leaders share their Sunday experiences.

We come to the end of month one of BECOMING A HEALTHY CHURCH.  Dave Bilderback takes over the next 4 weeks as we study about the priority of scripture in a healthy church.  We've completed the Healthy Church survey and will be sharing the results with the church in the coming weeks.  There are some surprising results in there and I know that we have a lot of work to do.

Set List

Friend of God (Gungor)---we used this at Summer Camp this week--so familiar with the kids and familiar with the adults too.

You, You Are God (Gateway)

Welcome To Worship/Announcements
      420 Pairs of Shoes Collected for Buckner's Shoes For Orphan Souls
      Summer Camp Wrap-Up (Video)

(No audio due to copyright restrictions)
Summer camp Wrap up from Jim Drake on Vimeo.
      Missions Emphasis (Spain) Interview with Paul Cox, Missionary to Spain

Offertory Prayer

You Are God Alone (Foote)

Word of God Speak (Millard)

Morning Message- Becoming A Healthy Church; The Priority of Scripture (Dave Bilderback)

We All Bow Down (LeBlanc) (Didn't do)
Wonderful Words of Life (Hymn)  Subbed this old hymn in at the end to tie into the sermon.

O Say Can You See---Please Help Me Get All of The Words!

So I've been announcing at the Texas Little League District 5 Tourney here in Snyder the last two nights.  It hasn't been much drama until last night when the CD player stuck on Disc 1 and wouldn't play the national anthem.

In that moment of panic I had a quick decision to make. One just let the crowd begin to sing it  or two sing it accapella.   I chose two and begin to pray as I sang " Dear Lord, let me remember all of the words!"

I guess I was thinking about all of the Bloopers and tv shows where they show the person messing up on the Star Spangled Banner.

I just closed my eyes and went for it... it worked out fine but I don't want to be doing that every night!

My Creative Children!

My oldest child, Taylor, recently upgraded her camera and has found a love for photography.  She did a photo shoot with her sister Sunday and I must say that I'm quite proud of her work (even though I think they've been watching way to much AMERICAS TOP MODEL).

I love it that they are finding their own creativity and artistry and making it their own.

Summer Camp--Going Outside The Walls

We opened our Summer Camp last night at Boys/Girls club here in Snyder. This is our 5th year to do this here.

It was 98 degrees outside yesterday and about 105 in the gym--but we made it through with about 115-120 yelling, screaming kids.

The kids seemed to enjoy it all; songs, games, recreation, scripture and more. This definitely isn't your typical VBS.


It's time again for our annual VBS--Summer Camp that will take place this week at the Snyder Boy's And Girls Club.  This is our 5th time to do it  ( I guess must mean I'm starting my 6th year here!)

We move everything over there for an evening of teaching, games and crafts in order to reach our community.  Although its a kabillion degrees in the gym (no central heat on a 98 degree day) it's a rewarding week to meet people in our community and begin relationships.

Today has been about last minute details and making sure the things that we missed last night in trial run are on the van in about 30 minutes.  Media Shout is done, spy songs are downloaded and the anti-perspirant is on and ready to go.

I'll be uploading some pics from this each day to keep you posted.

What did your church do to meet the community where they are?

Plan B: Book By Pete Wilson

I'm excited to start this book this week. It's written by Pete Wilson, from Cross Point church in Nashville.  I saw Pete last week at National Worship Leaders Conference and he signed my book for me.  In fact all of my team got signed books from Pete!  What a treat.

Worship Confessional, June 20, 2010

This post is part of Sunday Set Lists over on The Worship Community Blog.  Its where worship leaders from all over the world gather to share their Sunday experiences.

We mixed it up today.  Started with all of the announcements and stuff first.  We wanted to have a really concentrated time of worship. Sometimes all of the necessary stuff of church (announcements and things) seem to upset the flow of worship.  So-we turned it around today.  I could see that some were wondering "what's going on" because we weren't in our usual mode of one-two songs then announcements.  It's good to mix it up

Missions Moment--Iran (Video-Stereotypes Unmasked)
Offertory Prayer
Awesome Is The Lord (Tomlin)-3rd and final week on this one... I think we know it by now
Scripture Reading (Isaiah 40:28-31)
Everlasting God (Brown)
We All Bow Down (LeBlanc)
Healing Rain (Smith)
Amazing Grace (Tomlin)
Morning Message (Father's Day--really good message for Fathers)

We closed the sermon with a video from The Skit Guys.  It's a great video

Here I Am To Worship (Hughes).  They really sang on this one!

How was your Sunday?

Do Your Facilities Reflect God?

We spent the last week at Calvary Albuquerque for the National Worship Leader Conference and I must say that from the first moment that we stepped onto the campus we were welcomed, not with people, but the environment created in their landscaping and their outdoor space.

Walking through the arches of the courtyard you are ushered down the steps of the amphitheater where the outdoor baptisty/fountain is. This terraced area provides a place for people to come and lay under the trees and rest and relax (which many in the conference did) and also an outdoor area for concerts and baptisms. What a brilliant idea.  (Wednesday night I was blown away by the number of people who were bringing their lawn chairs to sit in this area and listen to the concert inside that was being broadcast outside)

The area incorporates sight, smell (lavender and rosemary bushes abound) and sound (the fountain) as well as a courtyard for people to gather and drink coffee and visit after services.  It was possibly the best thought out facility that I have seen in my years of going to conferences.

It made me think "How do our facilities reflect our understanding of God's creation?"   Painfully I had to acknowledge that we don't have those areas where people can connect to God's creation. In fact, we've neglected our outer areas (we have some pretty weeds now) and I can't help but think of what these intangibles say about us.

What do you think? Can the outside of the church add to the atmosphere of the experience.

Go West Young Man!

Heading out again tomorrow for the NWL conference in Albuquerque!  I'm excited to take 6 team members along with me to be immersed in the training that we will receive from some of the nation's top worship leaders.

I'm especially excited that my friend, Pete Wilson, will be there speaking at one of the breakout sessions.  Can't wait to see him.  And I'll get to hook up with my friend, Dave Bruskas from Mars Hill Church-Albuquerque!

It's gonna be a good week. Most likely will be updating from my phone--so look to facebook for info and pictures.

Worship Confessional, June 13, 2010

This post is part of Sunday Set List over on The Worship Community Blog

Awesome Is The Lord Most High (See The Morning Album Version)


Missions Moment-Indonesia

Centrifuge Camp Wrap Up
(This video is from 2008 but is similar to the one we showed this morning in worship.  Gives you a feel for the camp that we were at this week. It was an incredible week of worship and word and my hat goes off to the Lifeway team that put this thing together)
We did an interview time with students who went to Glorieta this week.

Offertory Prayer

How He Loves (McMillan)
My Jesus I Love Thee
Mighty To Save

Morning Message--Becoming A Healthy Church

From The Inside Out

Worship Confessional, June 6, 2010

This is a bit late as Blogger was clogged last Sunday evening when I tried to post before heading to Glorieta for Centrifuge Youth Camp.  Here's what we did last Sunday. This post is part of Sunday Set List over on  The Worship Community Blog.
Set List

Because of Your Love (Baloche)

Awesome Is The Lord Most High (Tomlin)


Mission's Moment (India)

How He Loves (McMillan)  Perfect song to set up the sermon on the Good Samaritan

Message--Becoming a Healthy Church--Who Is My Neighbor (Robbie Boyd)

Response (The Lord's Supper)

The Heart of Worship (Redman)

Remembrance (The Communion Song)