Saturday, February 19, 2005

Things that deserve more than a line

Now my mother in law may have cancer...

Steve Scharf Got Married today...

And the rain in LA CA keeps on coming...

We have rented space to do more work with youth...

The LA IC Team is soon going to have it's own office...

I am dreaming of an art Studio...

I wish the whole world could see online InnerChanges new Quarterly publication called the InnerVoice.

Willie and Gennell have asked me to be the pastor for their wedding...

Chris and Roxanna are expecting their first child early March...

My sister Sunday and Kieth are expecting their first child late March...

Friday, February 04, 2005

Mentoring Initiative

I am right now prepping for a 4:30 pm meeting with a group of young leaders in our neighborhood. I get to lead the beginning ice breaker and the devotions at the end. I feel somewhat inspired for the devotions...
on Matthew 7:7-12 and thought I would leave some of my reflections on my blog...

  • This is a relational truth and not a magical formula. That is why verse 12 is not a non-sequitur. God is not a cosmic Santa Clause. God is a responsive Father. God's responsiveness to us is not unrelated to our genuine love and care for one another.
  • The world of good belongs to the pro-active: The people who ask, seek, and knock.
  • We do not always see clearly about what we are asking for, seeking, or on which door to knock... God as a loving Father is responsive to the fact that we are Asking, Seeking, and Knocking.
  • Think of the tragedy of a life lived without the help and support of God or others... That comes from a lack of Asking, Seeking, or Knocking.
  • Those who succeed in this life are defined by their persistence in the face of requests that may go unanswered, Searching that goes on unanswered for even years, and The many doors that may have been closed before the right door opened. God is encouraging us to ask. (see the life of Zachariah and Elizabeth in Luke 1&2. for encouragement. God wants us to be moved into roles of significance in this life which runs deeper than the threads of expectations and personal longings.)
  • What is most important in the journey is who we become as people in the midst of our request, longings, seeking, hopes, exploring by knocking on the doors of opportunity, and pursuits.

Yard sale Reflection

Saturday January 22, 2005 InnerChange and LA Street Productions did a small Benefit Yard Sale.

Recycling other people’s junk in order that treasure can be increased in heaven is a special joy to me (JAW). Will collected donations from his house and some of the other members of LA Street Productions (Special thanks also to Rei ; ). InnerChange and some of our ministry partners also contributed significantly (Special thanks to Randa, Barbie, & Sue’s sister).

Over $250.00 was raised. Half will go to LA Street Productions for their second Annual Scholarship to a deserving Belmont High School student. Half of it went to the Tsunami Relief effort Through CRM.

Neighbors were able to meet some of the needs of their extended family. One grandmother, who bought a group of coats, proudly told me that she was going to send these back to her family in Mexico.

Other Neighbors moved by the event donated their own clothing and other goods in order to contribute to our efforts. One couple arrived after the yard sale was over and donated a whole set of dishes for our next yard sale.

All the goods that were left over got donated to the Nehemiah House… a Christian discipleship house that is an extension of ministry from a local Evangelical Free Church in Pico-Union.

Because the day was a very pleasant LA day… many of the women of the neighborhood spent a significant time just being together and talking with each other. This kind of event is very helpful in nurturing a sense of community and has become a recognized community event. Norma was able to catch up with one friend and was able to restart the weekly Bible studies she has been having with their family. Will is well known and liked by many in this neighborhood… so this event became a good chance to catch up with old friends including some inactive members of LA Street Productions. On top of all this we got to meet some neighbors that we have never met before.

At the end of the day Will was having some car trouble. In old time barter/neigborhood fashion he was able to get help getting his truck fixed in exchange for one of the donated tables in the yard sale.

I also had a great time talking with Will – (thanks Will for your help with everything). We have shared hopes and dreams together over the years. May God continue to grant us the grace to receive His blessings and to share that blessing with others.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

This Little Light of...

In a recent prayer time, God gave my friend, and fellow LAIC Team member Rikki, a thought that I have been meditating on it for over a month....

I decided that I wanted to share it with you all...

"A Candle can only burn if it has enough oxygen.

*****So, if you're the Candle.....what is your Oxygen?"

Tues.Feb. 1 -- A Prayer meeting that moved me.

February 1, 2005

Silence – 5 minutes
Focus heart and mind to be here together with Christ

Read Psalm 103

Silence – God’s relationship with His children
“He does not treat us as we deserve”
His Mercy
The Cross

Prayers of Intercession
Our Teams here in Los Angeles
San Francisco
Individuals in IC who are struggling
Those in pain
Those who are sick
Pray for Kristen’s health

Prayers of Blessing for IC

Read Romans 12 together:

Romans 12

And so, dear brothers and sisters,
I plead with you to give your bodies to God. Let them be a living and holy sacrifice – the kind He will accept.

When you think of what He has done for you, is this too much to ask?

Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will know what God wants you to do, and you will know how good and pleasing and perfect His will really is.

As God’s messenger, I give each of you this warning: Be honest in your estimate of yourselves, measuring your value by how much faith God has given you. Just as our bodies have many parts and each part has a special function, so it is with Christ’s body. We are all parts of His one body, and each of us has different work to do. And since we are all one body in Christ, we belong to each other, and each of us needs all the others.

God has given each of us the ability to do certain things well. So if God has given you the ability to prophesy, speak out when you have faith that God is speaking through you. If your gift is that of serving others, serve them well. If you are a teacher, do a good job of teaching. If your gift is to encourage others, do it! If you have money, share it generously. If God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously. And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly.

Don’t just pretend that you love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Stand on the side of the good. Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other. Never be lazy in your work, but serve the Lord enthusiastically.

Be glad for all God is planning for you. Be patient in trouble, and always be prayerful. When God’s children are in need, be the one to help them out. And get into the habit of inviting guests home for dinner or, if they need lodging, for the night.

If people persecute you because you are a Christian, don’t curse them; pray that God will bless them. When others are happy, be happy with them. If they are sad, share their sorrow. Live in harmony with each other. Don’t try to act important, but enjoy the company of ordinary people. And don’t think you know it all!

Never pay back evil for evil to anyone. Do things in such a way that everyone can see you are honorable. Do your part to live in peace with everyone, as much as possible.

Dear friends, never avenge yourselves. Leave that to God. For it is written,

“I will take vengeance;
I will repay those who deserve it,” Says the Lord.

Instead, do what the Scriptures say:
“If your enemies are hungry, feed them.
If they are thirsty, give them something to drink,
And they will be ashamed of what they have done to you.”

Don’t let evil get the best of you, but conquer evil by doing good.

Close in prayer

Some of what's been keeping me Busy...

Each of these items could deserve their own space in my blog. That said it is better to note them than toneglect blogging them completely:

  • Tues.Feb. 1 -- A Prayer meeting that moved me.
  • Sat. 22nd... a very sucessful Yardsale that made over 250.00 for a Scholarship fund and tsunami victims.
  • My weekly Internet Radio show has come to an end and been replaced with other work.
  • We have 2 neat APU Students as interns with us this Semester -- Shawna, and Alisha... See their blogs...
  • I have Joined a Gym for both Exercise and Ministry Purposes.
  • Congradulations again to Steve and Sandy who are getting married mid Feb.
  • Willie is working full time and selling stuff on Ebay... He has a perfect record and close to 100 independent positive feedback messages.
  • Miriam just got back from a short-term missions trip to Purue.
  • We are starting the Mentoring Initiative again this week.