“Most nuns are former Mafioso…”
I remember the first time I saw her. It was 8 a.m. on January 6, 1987 in Dr. Koivisto’s Gospels class at Multnomah University (although back then it was called Multnomah School of the Bible). I was just starting my 2nd semester of my junior year in a small Christian college in Portland, OR. The start of 2nd semester was always a time the young men looked forward to because it meant the possibility of a few new female students transferring in and broadening the field, if you know what I mean.
I saw her right when she walked in. I can see it like it happened yesterday. She was wearing a long black wool coat and had a coffee in her hand. She had beautiful blond hair and perfect skin.
She took my breath away.
The first is my wife.
Today is her birthday (Happy Birthday, babe!). Kel is the most amazing, caring, giving, kind, loving, godly, beautiful, sexy woman I’ve ever met. I am so blessed to have been married to her for almost 25 years. Words could never adequately capture her essence. If you know her, you know what I mean. If you don’t, you’re missing out. Kel has a way of making everyone around her feel loved, special, and appreciated. She is so giving, open, and honest. I could never do what I do, nor would I be who I am, without Kel.
I love you, babe!
The second is the oldest blonde boy.
Today (about 10 minutes ago, in fact) he became a Marine. He finished the Crucible and conquered the Reaper. Right now he is receiving his Eagle, Globe, and Anchor Emblem and entering into an incredible brotherhood men and women committed to serving our country and protecting our freedoms and way of life. A little under 2 years ago, Connor told me that God was calling him to a life of serving Him by serving his country. Proud does not begin to describe my feelings for this young man. He is one of the finest human beings I know. He is also one of my best friends. I am incredibly proud, honored, and humbled to be his father.
I was recently given a copy of a book by author, artist, musician, and fellow rebel John Voelz. The book was Quirky Leadership from Abingdon Press. I was intrigued by the title and, knowing JVo, I was looking forward to his particular slant on the broad subject of leadership.
The first thing you’ll notice is the chapter titles.
In my previous life, I was a worship leader for about 24 years. And even though I was the guy that was brought in to “make us more contemporary” (read, “whipping big”), I’ve always held some of the classic hymns and songs of the faith close to my heart. Not only that, but there have been a couple of “old school” worship leaders that I have always looked up to and admired for their love for Jesus and music: Bill Gaither, Cliff Barrows, and George Beverly Shea.
I am getting ready to launch a series on the Gospel of Mark this Sunday. The series will last “a while.” What does “a while” mean? Well, we’re going to take it a chapter at time, then break off into something else, then come back to the book. I wanted to do it that way so that I could respond to other teaching needs in our church, while still working through a book in an expository manner.
In preparation for the study, I added to the graphic above (which you can download HERE) that I originally found on CreationSwap (you can download the original artwork for free HERE). We will also use the title package they used for the series which you can play below (or download from CreationSwap).
But their final verdict on this day will not be decided by a court of law. It will be decided by the mob. For this day is the Day of the Passover Feast. And by tradition, the governor, also on the dais with these two prisoners, had a custom of releasing a prisoner to the people that day.
And while these two men had futures that were destined for the same destination, their pasts could not be more different. Although, in a way, you could say that their goal was the same: freedom for their people.
I’ve been a pastor for the past 24 years – a youth pastor, a worship pastor, a combination of the two, even an interim pastor. But I’ve never been “that guy.”
There are some distinct differences that I’ve noticed in the past 3 months (I’m sure I’ll find a lot more as time goes on). For the sake of my friends who aren’t in a lead/senior pastor role, I thought I’d share my thought on the differences: