Latest Thoughts

Bill’s View…A Hope Full Lent

Posted by on Feb 24, 2012 in Blog | 0 comments

What are you hoping for this Lent?

Perhaps that’s not the ashes question you’d normally consider. We typically associate this 40 day season with repentance and reflection, remembering our dusty humanity.  

Yet it is the certainty of the cross suffered for us and Jesus’ resurrection as God’s gift to us that lead us truly to repentance.  Lent is best experienced peering behind the rolled away stone, squinting into the darkness wondering if the cloth really came from His body and embracing He is not there.  He has turned away death.  We now can turn away (repent) from our self-centered lives.  Thus my opening question.

As you begin the 40 day trek to the vacant cave, what are you hoping for?  What does your heart desire for you, for your family, and for your Church?  Spend the next 40 days bringing these items to God.  Not in an arrogant spirit of entitlement but in a humble spirit of hopeful dust that will ultimately be restored.

Make the list.  Put it somewhere you’ll see it every day.  And pray.  Pray full of hope, full of confidence in the God whose Son is dusty like us.

Here’s my list:

  • That my daughter Abigail return safely from Egypt after spending two months with friends, serving at FOUND (a school for refugee children), and experiencing life at the crossroads of Christianity and Islam.
  • That the 12+ leaders CrossPoint is sending to the Verge conference the week of February 27 would create a deeper understanding of how mission is the best way to grow a disciple, and community is the best environment to do mission.
  • That God would lead us to a campus pastor and a youth director for our SevenLakes campus. 
  • That our EightTen’s campus plan for First Friday Music Venue would be solidified, ready to start.
  • That God would connect us with the right Spring Branch people to move the community park to the next phase.
  • That the Spring Break trip would be great experience for our CrossPoint youth and their friends.
  • That CrossPoint’s Board of Directors and our campus Leadership Teams possess great wisdom from God as they lead through this season.
  • That CrossPoint’s staff be replenished as we meditate on Jesus this Lent.
  • That my brother’s (Mickey) health would improve.
  • That the Brazil Mission Society board I serve on would have a clear vision of our next steps to impact that country for Christ.
  • That the local groups of FiveTwo, our church replicating network, would continue to replicate—10 thus far around the country (Boston, Florida, Minnesota, Texas, Colorado, Arizona, Washington, and California), with another six in the works.

That’s my list.  Now, go make yours.  And pray.

P.S. I’ll be serving SevenLakes during the pastoral vacancy, which means I won’t be present at the other campuses for a while.  Feel free to bring your family and join us any Sunday at SevenLakes High School 10:30 am.  It’s the same CrossPoint.  Just a different location!

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Farewell to Dan & Andrea Hauser

Posted by on Feb 19, 2012 in Blog | 0 comments

Today was the Hausers last Sunday at CrossPoint SevenLakes.  They are moving to Little Rock, Arkansas where Dan will serve as the senior pastor of Christ Lutheran Church.  

The Hausers have been with CrossPoint for 12 years, serving as youth minister (Dan), children minister (Andrea), interim director of our preschool (Andrea), and campus pastor (Dan).  Their family has been a wonderful blessing to this ministry.  We send them knowing God will use them mightily in expanding His Kingdom in Little Rock.

Join me in thanking them for their years of service by sending them an email here.

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Thank You For Encouraging

Posted by on Feb 17, 2012 in Blog | 0 comments

Jeff Schrank is the senior pastor of Christ Church in Phoenix. His vision brought about the Best Practices conference I’m attending today and tomorrow.  500 people from around our denomination are here, listening, learning and enjoying one another.

It is also Jeff who approached me and said, “I want you to tell the group about FiveTwo.  It’s the most exciting missional movement we have in the synod, and they need to know about it.”  I didn’t have to beg or cajole.  Jeff saw a way to encourage churches to embrace sacramental and mission and dialed my number.  He’s a living example of how encouragement creates momentum.

His encouragement-in-action provided me a forum to present FiveTwo’s worldview, connecting us into 100’s of sacramental church leaders seeking a voice and “how to.”  My FiveTwo overview last night generated thank you after thank you of “I’ve been waiting for someone to tie sacramental and missional together,” “Your marrying of sacramental and mysterious and mission are spot on,” and “How do we join this cause? It’s exactly what we need.”  All because Jeff lived out encouragement.

So thank you, Jeff Schrank.  Over 90 people attended our mixer, sharing their sacramental stories.  And at least another 5 FiveTwo Locals will come on-line.  All because of you.

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Why I Use #apostolic

Posted by on Feb 9, 2012 in Blog | 0 comments

If you follow me on Twitter, you’ll note I occasionally hashtag with #apostolic.  To those of mainline heritage, it might appear I’m claiming “the original 12” status.  Definitely not.  Those guys were of a foundational era, with face-to-face Jesus time.  Not me.  I’ve had no beatific visions nor friends named Judas.

The thought that I’m using #apostolic that way, however, speaks to a more fundamental issue.  Namely that #apostolic is solely for the initial days of Christianity, reserved for history and libraries and theological tomes but of no relevance in today’s age or Church.  It possesses past-tense significance but no present-day power.  It speaks solely of men and women long gone, of an office once filled but now sublet.  It describes not the work of leaders in God’s Church today.

That’s a fallacy.  And said fallacy leads to us losing the power present in apostolic work.  Paul wrote of this work in Ephesians 4 where he says God gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists and some shepherds and teachers.  He gave these offices to the Church so that the unity in verses 1-6 would result in the maturity God desires in verses 12-17.  The bridge (means) to that maturity is the work of apostles, prophets, evangelists, shepherds and teachers.

That work and those offices continue today. They did not die with the first century Church, just as God’s desire for the Church to reach maturity did not die.  Nor are they reserved solely for an ordained individual.  They were given to the Church, to be lived out by the Church.

When we no longer allow a word but instead relegate it to back pages or sub-bullets, we negate its concept and soon lose its purpose. We speak around the word, about the word, without using the word.  And in so doing fail to embrace the authority and meaning of the word.  We desire an outcome but possess limited power to reach it.

Thus the reclaiming of #apostolic.  

I’m not saying I’m an apostle or she’s an apostle or he’s an apostle.  I am saying there is apostolic work to be done in order for God’s Church to reach maturity.  And apostolic work is the work of starting new expressions of God’s Church.  It’s continuing the work of The Apostles in planting and placing men and women in new locales in need of Church.  It’s the work of encouraging and equipping so that Church starts in populated places and on dry, hard ground.  It’s the work of questioning current ineffective practices and bringing “What if…? vision so that God’s Church is more effective at reaching God’s lost people.

It protects and propagates God’s value of “Go!” so that all ethnic groups would become followers of Jesus Christ.

That’s why I use #apostolic.  By the grace of God I get to do some of that kind of work.

So if that’s the work you find yourself doing, join me in using #apostolic. Reclaim the word for today’s Church so that more of today’s lost people would follow Jesus.

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Posted by on Jan 25, 2012 in Blog | 0 comments

There falls a shadow between the conception and the creation. In the annals of innovation, new ideas are only part of the equation. Execution is just as important.

T. S. Eliot
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How Do You Define Crisis?

Posted by on Jan 24, 2012 in Blog | 0 comments

The Chinese word for crisis consists of two characters: one for dangerous, the other for opportunity.  When faced with a crisis, which side do you lean to?  Consider paying attention to the devastating aspects without losing sight of the potential.  Lead through the dangerous into the possibilities.  Don’t stop in the valley.

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Posted by on Jan 24, 2012 in Blog | 0 comments

beingblog:

Jesus saves near the Packard motor plant in Detroit. Photo: Trevor Patt. (Taken with instagram)

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Posted by on Jan 23, 2012 in Blog | 0 comments

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Posted by on Jan 15, 2012 in Blog | 0 comments

God’s goal for us in marriage is to become the righteousness of God.

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Posted by on Dec 25, 2011 in Blog | 1 comment

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Tiesto remix of Mission Impossible theme. 

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