Thursday, February 26, 2009

Lessons Learned on the Road

I really wish Blogger let me upload the HD versions of these, the compressed ones don't do it justice...Facebook is getting some larger ones....

Monday, February 23, 2009

Paul Comes to Town!

We are SOOOOO stinkin' happy that Paul is on the road with us. For me it's even more special because it brings back fantastic memories of our past tours together. I have had the pleasure to travel to Singapore on a CTI team with Paul, AND lead a team to Guadalajara Mexico with him as well. Needless to say, it feels good to be on the road with him again.
I would venture to say that Paul is enjoying his time just as much as we are...even though we put him to work almost as soon as he got here ;-)

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Thursday, February 19, 2009

My apologies

This video started out as a better concept than it turned into. This will be the worst video I post to the blog. If you have anything you'd like to see a video of (what we eat/eating candy/etc) post a comment with ideas.
This video was based off of some thoughts pre show. It somewhat walks you through the physical and the spiritual aspects of getting ready for a concert.... Again, rough, not great, worst that you'll see from me on this blog. 

The Great Divide

So, we originally planned today to be not only a driving day from Las Vegas to Phoenix, but we had also thought we would visit the Grand Canyon on our way out. This morning, we decided to nix the visit since it would add at least another 3 hours of driving time to our already 7 hour road trip and move it to next week when we have a few days of no concerts. We were all fine with this plan and still got to see the Hoover Dam when we crossed the Nevada-Arizona boarder, which was a pretty phenomenal site to behold.

All in all, we had planned a non-eventful driving day.
But of course God had other plans.

We stopped for lunch in Bullhead, AZ. Instead of frequenting a fast food chain as per usual, we decided to eat at a grocery store instead- eat healthier and, for the boys, get rotisserie chickens to split. Bullhead is in the Mojave desert and not a very big town- in short, assumed to be non-eventful for us. After we paid for our food (which we saved $4 on because my family's old phone number was still in the store's system- score!), we scouted a couple tables next to the deli that we were going to sit and eat at before we continued on our long journey.
Then it happened. As we reached the tables, a middle aged couple sat down with their coffee and donuts on the end, leaving only 6 seats for the 7 of us. Dang it! So, we began to sit down anyway and kind of squeeze 4 of us onto 3 seats (nothing I would recommend for everyday dining) and they began to talk to us. To me, this automatically sends me to my introverted place that always wonders why people can't just follow the social norm and ignore each other. Note: I am naturally a pretty introverted person who doesn't just naturally open myself up to the unknown, including nice people in grocery stores- I mean, you never know how people will react, right?! Luckily, I travel in a group with Carl and Nate who both thrive on social interaction (socialists, perhaps?) and opened up right away to the couple, Dean and Dolly. We told them why we were traveling through, who CTI was.... the usual conversation for us when we meet people not familiar with the ministry.
Then we got to know why they were there: ministry. They live in the Bullhead area and have been regulars at the grocery store for years. The reason they choose to have coffee and donuts at the grocery store is because they willingly and actively place themselves in a position where they can meet people coming through and share the love of Christ with. My jaw dropped- seriously?! How crazy is that! Here we are, a bunch of ragged-looking missionaries, and we sat down to a couple who have taken the Great Commission to heart and are living it out in their own community! I mean, who else but God could arrange that?
We talked for a while over lunch, exchanging life stories, why we have committed to the ministries we have and the blessings and hardships of living out those ministries. We then prayed together and for each other, we gave them our website and ministry info to look into, and then went our separate ways. By the time of our parting, I was just amazed at how remarkable my day had just turned out to be. I started the day off by thinking that, since it was a traveling day, I wouldn't have to socialize much- even with my own team. Next thing I know, I'm speaking to two very awesome strangers, listening to their histories and witnessing how the Lord is using His people to spread the news of His glory in a unique way in a common place- the grocery store.

I guess I can say I have learned/re-learned/been reminded of two things:
1) That we really are a body- I may be awesome at some things, like organization and rocking the bass, but I really fall short in the being-able-to-reach-out-right-away-to-others thing without help. I truly believe this is why we are told in the Bible that we can remain strong in Christ best through community.
2) That Christ calls us to take a leap of faith in our lives. Yes, it is initially to trust that He is Lord and give ourselves completely to Him, but that call doesn't end there. Everyday we are called to exhibit the love of Christ to all those around us and remain open to His love in anyway it manifests- even in people. We must be willing to cross the great divide we humans have created between each other. Like the Grand Canyon, it looks massive- like one could never even hope to get across by just jumping. However, once we make that leap and take a chance on others, we realize that the footing has been there all along-- it just happened to be glass, requiring us to act on faith rather than our limited sensory experiences.

So, even though we didn't make it to the Grand Canyon today, I still got to see it. I faced my own fears about stepping up to the edge of that glass floor and was forced to deal with them by my team. Well, God through my team. I can't say I'm cured of my fear of the unknown person, however I do believe I am a little more willing to take that step of faith I am called to now. What about you?

Monday, February 09, 2009

So I noticed that no videos have been posted to our official blog since Nov. In light of that, I wanted to highlight some of the beauty of the land we have been driving through on our journey.