Saturday, January 31, 2009

Saturday Night

It is Saturday evening and like most Saturdays, I am having a hard time resting. I am excited about what tomorrow hold for us at Gateway Fellowship and I am pumped about sharing Part Two of the series in 2 Peter. I spoke with a friend this evening via Facebook Chat (I must say, I love technology) and as we spoke she said she would be praying that "God moves in a mighty whirlwind tomorrow morning at your church." What awesome words and even better prayer. I am so thankful the the Lord has surrounded me with prayer warriors (some local, some regional, and some via the Internet). I am excited that my friend is praying for the whirlwind of God to show up tomorrow!

I am constantly reminded what it is that He has called us to. The Lord has put a calling on His church to be the voice of helping unfold the manifold wisdom of God. What does it look like for the church to embrace and engage the community around it? What does it look like for us to really "do life together"? All of these are things that we are constantly trying to answer as we exegete the community the Lord has called us to. Pray, this prayer with us, "Lord, would you fall on us like a mighty whirlwind"

And to my dear friend, Thank you for creating a picture of His Whirlwind!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Sunday Reflections

~ Church was awesome today
~ I was a little hyped but it was good
~ Worship was amazing ~ Scott did an outstanding job
~ Great meeting took place
~ 101 class was awesome

~ I love Gateway
~ I love the people
~ I love what HE is doing in us and through us
~ I love our staff
~ I love our ministry teams

~ I am tired but still can not seem to rest, I have many thing to accomplish.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Church Planting Landmines

more info from the DCPI Church Planter Conference:

19 Landmines you might encounter in Church Planting:

1. Trying to plant without being called by God

~ 2 most miserable people in the world are those who are called and are not serving and those who are serving and are not called

2. Trying to plant without being a church planter
~ you must be visionary, a self starter, relate well to the unchurched and you must have spousal support. must be flexible, adaptable and a strong work ethic

3. Wrong Location

~ exegete the city, sense of call for the area
~ may not work if the community is too small to support the new work
~ have to look at potential growth size
~ if there are other new church plants in the area
~ if there is the same style church already in the area
~ not any type of public facility to use as a gathering

4. Premature birth and lack of core group development

5. Rushing people into influential leadership
~giving authority too soon

6. Poor Planning

7. Spiritual Oppression

8. Lack of support and accountability

9. Insufficient Outreach

10. Unrealistic Expectations

11. Lost focus on evangelism and discipleship

12. There is no process of discipleship

13. Sin in leadership

14. Missing your cultural target

15. Exhausted core group

~ too few doing too much for too long

16. Exhausted church planting couple

17. Critical spirit

18. Toxic leadership

~ is everyone on board with the vision?

19. Wrong facility

Building A Launch Team

More info from sessions at DCPI Church Planting Essentials Conference

The Launch Team is the people who join together to start a new church

Suggested Stages of Launch Team Development
1. Share the Dream
2. Small Group
3. Private Services
4. Practice Services
5. Official Church

Time Approaches for Launch Team Development
1. Time Driven Approach
2. Objective Drive Approach
3. A Spirit Driven Approach

How do you get people committed to the church planting vision?
1. Conduct pre-recruitment appointments
2. Discern the possible motivations for helping (character not skill)
3. Ask people to sign on the dotted line (covenant)

Leadership Development

Another session at the DCPI Church Planting Conference:

3 dimensions of the Christian Life:
~ personality (how we are wired)
~ ability (learned expressions)
~ maturity (character)

maturity = intimacy
ability = instruction
personality = inclination

personality ~ gifts, passions "knowing yourself"
ability ~ training, experience "knowing your stuff"
maturity ~ obedience, intimacy "knowing Christ"

leadership based on Personality and Maturity could be Ineffective (weak in abilities)

leadership based on personality and ability could lead to moral failure (very weak in the maturity area)

leadership based on ability and maturity could lead to frustration (weak in personality)

we must have self discovery (personality)
we must have skill development (ability)
we must have spiritual disciplines (maturity)

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Rick Warren's Prayer

Below is the text of Rick Warren's Inauguration Prayer

Almighty God, our Father:

Everything we see, and everything we can’t see, exists because of you alone.

It all comes from you, it all belongs to you, it all exists for your glory.

History is your story.

The Scripture tells us, "Hear, O Israel, the LORD is our God, the LORD is one." And you are the compassionate and merciful one. And you are loving to everyone you have made.

Now today we rejoice not only in America’s peaceful transfer of power for the 44th time, we celebrate a hinge point of history with the inauguration of our first African American president of the United States.

We are so grateful to live in this land, a land of unequaled possibility, where a son of an African immigrant can rise to the highest level of our leadership. And we know today that Dr. King and a great cloud of witnesses are shouting in heaven.

Give to our new president, Barack Obama,

the wisdom to lead us with humility,

the courage to lead us with integrity,

the compassion to lead us with generosity.

Bless and protect him, his family, Vice President Biden, the Cabinet, and every one of our freely elected leaders.

Help us, O God, to remember that we are Americans--united not by race or religion or blood, but to our commitment to freedom and justice for all.

When we focus on ourselves, when we fight each other, when we forget you--forgive us.

When we presume that our greatness and our prosperity is ours alone--forgive us.

When we fail to treat our fellow human beings and all the earth with the respect that they deserve--forgive us.

And as we face these difficult days ahead, may we have a new birth of clarity in our aims, responsibility in our actions, humility in our approaches, and civility in our attitudes—even when we differ.

Help us to share, to serve, and to seek the common good of all.

May all people of good will today join together to work for a more just, a more healthy, and a more prosperous nation and a peaceful planet.

And may we never forget that one day, all nations--and all people--will stand accountable before you.

We now commit our new president and his wife, Michelle, and his daughters, Malia and Sasha, into your loving care.

I humbly ask this in the name of the one who changed my life—Yeshua, 'Isa, Jesus [Spanish pronunciation], Jesus—who taught us to pray:

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy name.

Thy kingdom come, thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread.

And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.

And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil,

for Thine is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever.


Why Plant Churches?

~ 5 reasons to plant

• Biblical strategy
• Evangelize effectively
• Gather in the harvest
• Reach people groups
• Fulfill the Great Commission

~ 4 Phases of Church Planting

• Phase 1 – Focus is “God to you” Acts 16 (Macedonian Call)
• Phase 2 – Focus is “you to your team” Acts 19 (Ephesus)
• Phase 3 – Focus is “team to the Church” Acts 2 (Jerusalem)
• Phase 4 – Focus is “Church to the world” Acts 13 (Antioch)

If you are a church planter, what phase are you in?

12 Biblical Principles of Church Planting

This information was shared with us at the DCPI Church Planting Essentials Conference:

12 Biblical Principles of Church Planting

Jesus created Church Planting
He chose mankind to spread the Gospel
The disciples were the launch team

The Boss Principle:
~Christ is the Lord of church panting and He has a vision for your new church
The Power Principle
~Prayer is the indispensable source of God’s power and wisdom in each phase of church planting
The Nehemiah Principle
~God’s vision must lead to prayerful, the result of which should be comprehensive Task List set out upon a Time Line
The Barnabas Principle
~Every church planter needs a mentor
The Team Leader Principle
~The church planting pastor is most effective as a part team on which he serves as the visionary leader
The Mission Principle
~The central work of the new church will always be to help people put their trust in Christ, and grow into maturity as His followers
The Leadership Principle
~Leadership development lies at the heart of the new church’s mission, and the most important leadership quality is spiritual maturity
The Bridge Principle
~Understanding (and communicating sensitively to) the hearts and minds of people in the target community is essential to reaching them with the Gospel
The Magnet Principle
~When God plants a church, there should be widespread community awareness and interest
The Balance Principle
~The church planter’s spiritual life, family life and ministry life must be in biblical balance
The Multiplication Principle
~Healthy churches will reproduce and daughter church planting should be envisioned and planned from the new church’s beginning
The Joseph Principle
~Attending to organizational and administrative matters will protect and stabilize the new church and enable it to grow in a healthy way

If You Need a Reason

If you ever needed a reason to bring someone with you to Church this weekend...Check out this video from Penn Jillette of the famed "Penn & Teller". He is an avowed atheist. As a follower of Christ, this will blow you away.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Sunday Reflections

I love our church and the people the Lord has put there. I love the freedom we feel in worship. I love the community that is taking place. I love the idea that the Lord knew long before we did that , as a church, we would adopt another local body and the fit would be amazing. I love the new families and new faces that the Lord continues to bring us. I love the fact that there a lot of great and exciting things in front of us. I love teaching the Word and seeing people embrace it. I love the things I will be able to share in the very near future. Until that time, please pray for:

~the sale of a building (either for our use or another church's use)
~the youth ministries
~the children's ministries
~the men's and women's ministries
~the community of Royse City and Fate
~the future church plants we will be involved in

Monday, January 12, 2009

Sunday Reflections

I love what the Lord is doing in and through our church. The past two weeks, since we "adopted" another local congregation into our church body, have been amazing. I love to watch how the lord orchestrates His plan. I love to see the lives of people being refreshed through new relationships. We have some amazing things in store for us as a church and I am convinced we are on the verge of a seeing His handiwork unfold before our eyes. I love the people who are a part of the Gateway Family and I am praying that the lord uses each and everyone of us in might ways. He has gifted us all differently and we make up the body. we all have different duties and passions and I pray that, as a church, we will do our best to facilitate people into ministry into their God given passionate desires.

Please pray for:
~the sale of a building (either for our use or another church's use)
~the youth ministries
~the children's ministries
~the men and women ministries
~the community of Royse City and Fate

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Sunday Reflections

I Love our Church
I Love our people
I Love what the Lord is doing
I Love the assimilation process of a former church into our Fellowship

Today was a great day at Gateway. The first service in 2009 marked the beginning of a new chapter in the life of our church. This morning the people who used to worship as Woodcreek Bible Church were assimilated into our church body. The assimilation gave us some spark this morning. It was great to hear His people life their voices in worship to the King. I am very excited about the opportunities that are already presenting themselves to us in 2009. Please be praying for some major decisions we have in front of us. God is good!

This week is full of meetings and gearing u for the things that are ahead of us. The Lord continues to give us direction in how we are to fulfill the call He has put on our lives as individuals and as a church body. We are looking forward to the journey He has for us in 2009