This was from halftime last night. It always amazes me that students get so excited over this.
When I heard the news of the earthquake in Haiti I couldn’t believe it. An earthquake so severe that some are even calling it ‘apocalyptic’ of nature. There is no doubt that it is bad. Then this morning they were rocked with another earthquake of a 6.1 magnitude. This little nation is just getting hammered – hard right now. The pictures are just devastating. So many people have lost their lives. So many families impacted forever. Missionaries have fled from Haiti because of fear. Some are saying this is Haiti’s judgment from God for being a nation of voo doo and not worshiping God. Others are getting mad at some who are vocally outspoken in saying that. If we carefully read through the OT we know God judges nations who turn from him or who never acknowledge him. In Romans we know God says he turns people over to their desires sometimes. These are tough passages in times of devastation like what is going on in Haiti.
Here’s my thought: God has set the stage for His Gospel (a message of hope) to go in to Haiti to reach this little nation. Lately I have been feeling a tug at my heart for Haiti – it’s devastation but also the brokenness of the people there. I don’t know that God is calling me to do anything more than pray for Haiti. I do know in the past couple of days I have had a few conversations of going to Haiti in the future to help with relief/ rebuilding. Each of these were unprovoked by me. I was approached. I can’t say for sure God is calling me to go but the more I think about it the more I want to go.
Still I’m not sure it’s God saying, “Go.” I do know this – I will continue to pray about it and ask some questions. Maybe find a good ministry to volunteer through if God opens that door. God calls some of us to give money and some of us to go and do physical labor and help to share the Gospel. The thing is that whatever God calls us to is no more important than the other. It’s about being a good steward of what He is calling you to do with your time and resources.
What is God calling you to do for Haiti or for your local church? Maybe it’s pray. Maybe it’s send money. Maybe it’s go. Whatever it is He is calling you to be a good steward of that.
I have been thinking about making some big changes for a while. More personally than ministry related but still these changes will have an impact on my ministry. Over the past few years I have felt myself drifting more and more into “social media.” Social media isn’t bad or evil in and of itself – but when it becomes something that takes half of your time through the day then I think it’s something to address and deal with. Lets be honest in our culture today everything is shifting to social media so we can be connected. This really weirds some people out and really excited/ draws others in. For me, it really drew me in. Like many others I have an online community that follows what I am doing or what is going on in my life. Now there are some great pros to this. I can post a prayer request and have literally hundreds of people praying for different things. I can get ministry advice in minutes. But there are cons; it takes time to develop this community and sustain it. It can take away from your work or life. Social media is made to enhance our lives but really it can take away from it if we let it. We can get to the place where we use it to see how much value we have which is a false reality and it isn’t how God values us.
So in 2010 I am making some changes in how I use social media personally. Starting this week I will begin to ween myself down to one Twitter post a day. I will also only be making one Facebook status update once a day OR every other day. From here on they will pertain MOSTLY to blog posts. I will continue to use TXTSignal for our student ministry updates as well as Facebook.
I will also be drastically changing how I spend my time online and through the day. I haven’t gotten my daily schedule down just yet but this week I will have it broken into blocks for studying/ reading, responding to phone calls/ emails and lesson development. I will post more on the breakdown of my day as I develop it more. It will definitely be a structure change I need to make to become more effective as a Youth Pastor. These changes will not come easy and will be met with resistance but I know it will happen.
What changes do you need to make for 2010? Notice these aren’t resolutions – they are lifestyle changes.
It feels really weird to not be celebrating Christmas with my family this year. There is a stack of gifts sitting in my dining room that won’t be opened today…they will wait until I can get home again. I don’t know…I think being single and being away from your family is harder than being married and being away from them. As a single person you have no family – you’re just on your own. I guess that’s why they call it ‘single’ because there’s one. When you’re married you have family close by. Then again I’ve never been married so I don’t really know. I do know today is different for me. Right now my family is watching my nieces and nephew open gifts and go crazy over the things they are receiving today. Wrapping paper is all over the living room by now and everyone is having a great time with each other.
This year Christmas is different for me.
It’s the first time in my 33 years that I have been on my own for Christmas…well at least with no family close by. I will spend part of the day with a family from church and I am really looking forward to that – still it’s just not the same as being with family. Don’t take this as a complaint because it’s not. I knew when i went into ministry that eventually I would miss Christmas with my family – I just always thought I would at least be with my own family…but God’s timing is perfect – even in singleness.
We got a huge snow and my drive was drifted in. I went out to start my snow blower this morning and it was frozen up and wouldn’t start. A little while after that I received a text from a friend that said, “I have tractor…on my way.” It was a great surprise to see the picture below a little bit ago. It’s good to know there are some who are willing to lend a hand when it’s needed.
I got our promo packs done and ready to be dropped off at the post office to be mailed out today. The exciting thing for me is that there will be 70 area churches who will be getting a promo pack full of good stuff. For me the most exciting thing about the pack is the FREE Michael Fugitt CD that is in each one of them. Youth Pastor’s love FREE stuff and this is our way of blessing them with something cool and free BEFORE Christmas. The picks of the packs are below.
I haven’t really done any graphics design since I’ve been in Newell. I am really limited in what I can do as well. Today I spent a LOT of time creating posters, bulletin inserts, invite cards, postcards and fliers for our Super Bowl Bash. I am really pleased with how it turned out. Let me know your thoughts.