Tuesday, February 26, 2008

The Money Song (that never talks about money)

Ok, so this weekend we did a message at MSC about how the word 'money' is taboo at church. We had a little fun with it, and made a fake Taboo card (from the board game) and told the pastor he had to deliver the entire message without saying any of the words on the card. He obliged, but also counter-challenged me to write a song...

Now, obviously, I wrote this not from my own perspective, but rather from the perspective of someone who simply doesn't want to ever hear the word 'money' in church. It's a bit tongue-in-cheek, hopefully light-hearted... I went ahead and included a copy of the Taboo card in the corner... makes it a little more fun. Hope you enjoy!

Saturday, February 9, 2008

re:create 2008

Ok, so one of the reasons I've found myself behind in my daily Bible reading this past week is this amazing conference I was at called re:create. A thinktank for church arts staff of all shapes and sizes, this conference is truly one of a kind. Some of the highlights:

- Vicki Beeching led worship for us on Tuesday morning -- great songwriter/worship leader

- Jon Tyson, pastor of a church in New York city, challenged each and every one of us regarding the state of the church in America. Best quote of the week: "Christians are not called to change the world, but rather to create culture"

- Matthew West made a surprise visit, shared his testimony and sang a few tunes... Matthew is a great guy and a friend of mine. The story he is able to steward for God's kingdom alongside this record is incredible, so you should check it out.

- Integrity Music brought Paul Baloche, Kari Jobe, Jared Anderson and a staff writer before us and they led worship through a memorable night of song, storm and sirens!

- Mike Lewis, a.k.a. the JesusPainter, painted three full paintings for us as we all shared in communion. I had led worship for the group that morning and got the opportunity to accompanied Mike's art with a bed of acoustic music, including playing 'Communion' by Third Day along with Mark Lee, who plays guitar in Third Day. Quite humbling, and an awesome experience.

- An unexpected last-minute presentation by Ken Davis blew all of us away... laughed harder than we'd laughed in months, cried harder than we'd cried in months.

- Mark Stuart and the Hands and Feet project -- another great story of struggle and the ultimate decision of an artist to lay down his life for the opportunity to be the hands and feet of Jesus.

- Honestly, the coolest part of the week for me--beyond all of this above--is coming together with like-minded artists who are passionate about doing God's work (specifically in the local church) and having an awesome, intelligent, spiritual, emotional, renewing, refreshing think-tank experience for a full week.

Unbelievable week... thanks Randy, and ALL who were involved!

Bible or Blog?

Hey, everyone... so sorry that it's been so long since the last blog. I have several reasons/excuses, most of which are highly unimportant, but the one main reason I do want to share with you all... I've decided to tackle the task of reading the entire Bible all the way through in '08. Some of you probably think that's not even worth mentioning, since you've done it 7 times already in your life. Some of you probably think that's a noble idea that any Worship Artist who also leads worship at his church on a weekly basis should have done years ago... and then some of you--perhaps just a few--know how a big a deal this is for me. Maybe you're there, too. I'm not well read. I don't read for pleasure, and while I've read a massive amount of scripture over the years I've been in church, bible studies, devotions, etc. I've simply never been able to commit to read the entire bible.

Anyway, this is the year... I ask for your prayers, I've officially (for the first time) fallen behind on my reading schedule and am in desperate need of catching up this next week. If you're in the same boat I'm in, by the way, you can check out the schedule I'm using online at http://bible.christianity.com -- it's cool, 'cause you can actually follow along on your computer screen if that's easier for you, or go read your bible if that's easier and check it off later. I find myself doing both. Sometimes I'll really get into the text and go get my study bible so I can find some additional commentary on what I'm reading, and sometimes I'll read it online while I'm sitting in front of the computer screen.

Anyway, as I really begin to get a handle on this newly formed habit, I know the blogging will return, but I wanted to let you all in on one of the main reasons I've been away! :) Many, many blessings! Come join me in tackling the bible in a year, if you'd like! The site above will automatically start you on schedule beginning the day you decide to commit!