The Last Lecture

About a year and a half ago, I heard of a professor named Randy Pausch who was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.¬† He was married, had 3 young children, and he was dying.¬† He gave what was called “The Last Lecture” at his school, Carnegie Mellon, and it was very inspiring.¬† It became a huge YouTube hit, he was featured on Oprah and other tv shows and I started following his blog.¬† Randy died on July 25, 2008.

While preparing for this week’s message, I remembered something that Randy said that has stuck with me for some time now…

“A real apology only has 3 parts…
I am sorry. I was wrong. What can I do to make it right?”

In case some of you would like to see Randy’s lecture, I’ve embedded it below…

Current Series: Chazown

Everyone ends up somewhere…but not everyone ends up somewhere on purpose!

In five years would you like to have a stronger relationship with God?  With your spouse? Would you like to be in better shape?  What about your finances?  Your worklife?  All of these things are great things to achieve and none of them will happen unless you have a plan.

Chazown is a Hebrew word that means dream, revelation or vision.¬† Without a dream, you won’t end up anywhere on purpose.¬† Join us for this 6 week series in the month of March.

We’re not volunteers…we’re chosen

I was reading in 2 Corinthians 6 today…

We try to live in such a way that no one will be hindered from finding the Lord by the way we act…
2 Corinthians 6:3

Being a Christian is tough. ¬†Being a Christian in Utah is really tough. ¬†We’re trying to walk in grace at all times so that others can see our lives and find forgiveness themselves while at the same time, we are mindful to not do anything that would hinder someone coming to Christ. ¬†That’s tough for me. ¬†When it comes to setting an example for my neighbors, in some areas I don’t have a problem and in some I struggle more. ¬†For example, while I don’t believe that abstaining from work on Sunday is necessary, I have no problem taking the day off so that my neighbors aren’t vexed by the sight of me mowing my lawn on the “Sabbath”.

I happen to not like alcohol and I don’t smoke so those aren’t problems. ¬†However, I sometimes rent movies that I shouldn’t and the person at Blockbuster knows that even if no one else does.

Why am I bringing all of this up to you? ¬†Because I’m am convicted today about the reality that we are not volunteers…we’re chosen.

You may not want to be involved in bringing the people in our community to Christ, but you need to realize that you are called to do just that. ¬†Utah is less than 2% evangelical Christian. ¬†For every 100 people, there might be 2 who know God’s plan for salvation. ¬†You may not like it, but if you live in Utah, you are called to this mission. ¬†Plain and simple. ¬†We can’t wait for volunteers. ¬†There’s a world out there that is lost and if you aren’t willing to tell them, then you’re putting all of the responsibility on that other person (out of 100) to do the work.

I want to encourage you to live as a chosen one.  The one that God has called to do His great work in Syracuse and the surrounding community.

Nicodemus is coming

I was reading John today and came across the story of Nicodemus in chapter 3. ¬†The thing that I love about that story is that the scripture points out that it was after dark one evening when Nicodemus came to ask Jesus some questions. ¬†Being one of the Jewish religious leaders who were actively seeking to discredit Jesus, he didn’t want them to know that he was struggling and needed some answers and believed in his heart that Jesus had them.

I think there are a lot of people like that in the world and in our community.  I hope our church becomes a light in the city for people to turn to when they need answers.  Last year our focus was getting into the city.  This year, our focus is being here for the city.  I am honored to serve here with you all.

New series “Kaleo” coming in April!

kaleo

1 Peter 2:21 (NIV), “To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps,” is the foundation of the upcoming message series, Kaleo. Join us as we learn God’s call on each of our lives and how to be set apart and ready to follow His divine calling.

We plan to do this series just before moving in to the new building, so hopefully sometime in March!

New Building Project Website!

 

itfs

As we prepare for the final push into completing the first phase of our building project, we have built a website to keep our friends and extended families up to date on what’s happening! Latest news, video blogs, construction photos and even online donation features are what really drive the power of this site! ¬†Visit the site today to find out more at http://itstimeforsyracuse.com.

The ebb and flow of suffering and comfort

For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows.
-2 Corinthians 1:5

I started 2 Corinthians today and this was the verse that jumped out at me. I never equated my suffering with the suffering of Christ…most reasonably since my suffering just doesn’t compare. I never thought of Christ’s suffering being a part of my life. ¬†Sure, I understood that to be the ultimate prize – to suffer for Christ as He did for us, but I didn’t think it a real possibility.

This world has a lot of trouble and many suffer a great deal, even in our part of the world. I am thankful for comfort of Christ as the suffering of Christ would leave me decimated if not for the comfort of Christ.

I pray for comfort for all of my friends today. How long, Lord, must we sing this song? My spirit is willing but my flesh is weak.

A Rainy Day

I love the rain…even a little light rain when I’m golfing. Today is one of the few rainy days that we get here each year in Utah and while rain clouds are typically figurative of negative things in our lives, I am encouraged by it today.

You see, today the rain is good because it is melting the snow in my backyard.  I am so ready for spring and the rain today promises that while things look bleek now, the grass that is showing underneath still has some green to it and is ready to start flourishing again.

Things have felt like that at Lakeside lately. ¬†We’ve run out of money and we don’t know where the rest will come from. ¬†However, God is bigger than our financial needs and I believe he will provide. ¬†For the next couple of months, we will continue to meet in our renovated garage…but I think that my spirits will be picking up because I can see what’s coming next. ¬†A new building. ¬†A fresh start. ¬†A place where families can grow closer to each other and closer to God.

I want to ask all of you to continue praying with me. ¬†Continue coming. ¬†Continue sharing. ¬†Continue giving. ¬†Continuing believing. ¬†The storm clouds are about to part…