Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Wednesday Night Review

We've been talking about myths people have for a while now, calling the series "Biblical Myth Busters" and tonight we talked about the myth of the "Pansy Jesus." We went on a quest to expose the myth that Jesus was feeble and weak. Here are a few points they were given to think about:
  1. Jesus, while divine was a man. As a carpenter He probably had calloused hands. As an outdoors man He was probably accustomed to long periods in the wilderness.
  2. He spoke out against the corrupt authorities of His day. He did not hesitate to expose the hypocrisies of the religious people. He spoke out so often that He seen by leaders as a public danger. A Man of such courage that He deliberately walk to what He knew would mean death, despite the pleas of well-meaning friends!
  3. Jesus stormed into the Temple in Jerusalem. Single-handedly drove out a group of crooked merchants and money changers with a whip. Then stayed in the Temple to teach, as the book of Mark relates, to prevent the money changers from returning.
  4. The common perception of Jesus being soft, sentimental, and effeminate is a myth. He was gentle. He was meek. But that gentleness and meekness were not absence of strength. It was strength over control.
  5. Jesus did not deal mildly with evil. He did not react gently to hypocrisy. He did not smile serenely on wickedness.
Many do not know the real Jesus. Jesus was no pansy! If "angry" Jesus is something that shocks you then I would encourage you to learn more about who the real Jesus is through His words, in the Bible.

Friday, July 25, 2008

The Macs Arrived!

I came into the church office Wednesday morning, after being on vacation, 3 Mac computers were waiting for me, and the fourth arrived later in the day. It was 3 iMacs and 1 MacBook Pro.

The Macs are nothing short of beautiful. As people, and the staff, came in the office seeing the display of Macs (which I had out in the open so I could work on all of them at the same time) everyone was really impressed. Our secretary was bouncing with excitement as she anxiously waiting for me to finish my work on her's and turn it over to her.

We got .Mac (now called MobileMe) on all the computers, iWorks, plus all that comes standard on a Mac (the iLife suite is awesome).

I have tons to learn, and a lot to teach others. The cool thing is Mac is very user-friendly (meaning things just makes sense that they work a certain way) and intuitive, so it hasn't been hard to learn what I've learned so far. I actually haven't been able to play with the Macs much. Most of my time on them has been used setting up email, installing stuff, registering stuff, updating all the programs (that really took a long time to download), getting them to print on our server (we have a PC server and the Macs work with it with no problems, but since we lease our printer there are extra steps that have to be taken in order to print), and a few other minor things.

Next week I'll be working on getting one of the iMacs up in our sound booth working which is primarily just a matter of getting the right cords and connecting them to the Mac. I forgot to order one of the cords when I ordered the Macs so I have to place that order tomorrow; we didn't plan on using the Macs for this Sunday anyway, so it's okay.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Our Vacation

We are now back in Florida after spending a wonderful week back on the OBX. While we were there we got to spend lots of time with my parents, Nathan, Tricia, and Gwyneth, and Rachel and Ramon. We hung out at my parents house a lot just relaxing and enjoying their company. We got to see a lot of Tricia and Gwyneth, which was really nice considering what all they have been through this year and what we have missed. She is a beautiful baby and has those beautiful Lawrenson blue eyes. It was a great week catching up with the family.

We were also able to spend some time with friends. I was able to see several at Gwyneth's baby shower, and we saw several at Nags Head Church on Sunday morning. It was great to be able to go to church there! I miss it! I was able to swing by Kitty Hawk Kites and The Culinary Duck to say hi to some old co-workers (sorry I missed you Heather!), and that was nice.

We never made it to the beach, sad, but we did make it to La Fogata twice! I really miss some good Mexican food here. The local chain just doesn't cut it. On Saturday we went with some friends to see Batman, which rocked! Sunday I planned a girls night out. We went to Barefoot Burnies for some good food, then we went to see Momma Mia!, and that was awesome, even better than Batman!

The only bad part of the trip was our flights back. We were delayed a few hours in Norfolk, but luckily our flight out of Charlotte was delayed too, so we made that. We finally got home at 4am, so I slept until 12:10 today.

Monday was our anniversary. We ate our cake topper, which wasn't half bad for being in the freezer for a whole year. We decided not to do anything special by ourselves and took the chance to spend more time with our family. It was a good day thinking back of our first year as one.

And thanks to Karie and Paul & Diane for keeping and taking care of Lilly for us.

Friday night the family went to the beach for some family portraits. Nathan took all of them, and he did a great job! All of these pics are courtesy of Nathan. Thanks Nate!

Frodo flew like a pro; he did great both times. He got to hang with Nate's dog Meka all week. Frodo liked Meka a bit too much, if you take my meaning.

We had a great time on our vacation, and can't wait for you all to come and vacation with us!

Sarah Elizabeth

Monday, July 21, 2008

To Sarah Elizabeth From Your Mr. Darcy

One year ago, we stood facing each other, saying:
I, Terry, receive you, Sarah, to be my cherished wife, a precious gift from God. I promise to walk beside you, in days of adversity, and in days of great happiness, to provide a shoulder to cry on and a heart that understands. I promise to give myself to you as Christ gave himself to the church. I pledge to you my help, my support, my leadership, my love, and my prayers. I will be the spiritual leader of our home and I pledge to remain faithfully yours to have and to hold you from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish as long as we both shall live.

I, Sarah, receive you, Terry, to be my cherished husband, a precious gift from God. I promise to walk beside you, in days of adversity, and in days of great happiness, to support your aspirations, pray with you in your trials, share your burdens, and labor with you to make our marriage a joy. I look to you as the leader of our home and I submit joyfully to your leadership. I will live close to the Lord, so you may trust me at all times. I pledge to remain faithfully yours to have and to hold you from this day forward, for better for worse, for richer for poorer, in sickness and in health, to love and to cherish as long as we both shall live.
"In vain I have struggled. It will not do. My feelings will not be repressed. You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you." - Mr. Darcy

My beautiful bride has kept her vows and so much more. She's been a counselor, a dear friend, comforter, companion, playmate, and lover. She is what I look forward to coming home to. You truly are a gift from God!

Sarah Elizabeth Moore, we've had an adventurous first year and I hope God gives us so many more together. Happy anniversary my love!

Friday, July 18, 2008

North Carolina Vacation, So Far

Sarah and I are having a blast! We're really enjoying the relaxing and being in the company of people we love and have been missing.
  1. Paul and Diane drove us to the airport Tuesday afternoon.
  2. Frodo took to flying like a champ, although the fact that we gave him some children's benadryl helped.
  3. We arrived in Virginia on Tuesday night.
  4. Greg and Katie picked us up. We goofed off with the Wii, talked, and watched Frodo chase their cats.
  5. Wednesday morning Katie and Greg took us to IHOP to meet up with two of Sarah's college friends (Lynsey and Kristy).
  6. Then Katie took us to the Outer Banks, N.C. after IHOP but we made two important stops on the way: picked up a gift for Gwyneth's baby shower and Sonic!
  7. We then went to lunch at Mama Qwan's with Andy, Misha, Ty, Gail, Katie, and Brenda. It was really good!
  8. One of my formed youth, Caroline, dropped by with some friends to have lunch at Mama Qwan's and she spotted me. So we were able to talk a little bit.
  9. Later that night was the baby shower for Gwyneth, which Sarah went to. Us guys went over to Ramon's home and enjoyed some conversation, Wii, and some really good nachos.
  10. Thursday we relaxed a lot. I took Sarah to lunch at Lafagota's; a local Mexican restaurant that Sarah LOVES!
  11. Thursday night we had plans with the Williams family, a former youth family. They had spread the word I was coming and had other there as well. In all it was 14 people not including Sarah and I, which was a really cool way to get to spend time with everyone. We had BBQ which I have been craving!! It was wonderful to see everyone! Catching up was awesome!
  12. Today (Friday) has been pretty laid back. One of my formed youth, Anthony, picked me up for lunch. We went to a newly opened restaurant The Slice. We caught up with all that's been happening and are hoping to be able to spend more time together before Sarah and I head back to Florida.
  13. In just a little while we're getting together with the family for a family photo session and then dinner. Sarah has spent probably 2+ hours on getting ready. I know girls take a lot more time but I think my wife takes even longer than most (she disagrees of course).

Monday, July 14, 2008

North Carolina, Here We Come!

Tomorrow Paul and Diane are driving us to West Palm Beach International where we're flying to D.C. and then to Norfolk, Va to be picked up by Greg and Katie. Sarah and I are super excited about our trip.

A lot of plans have been made for the first few days we're going to be there, and we both can't wait! I know Sarah is incredibly excited about going to Gwyneth's baby shower. Nathan has put together a time for family photos, which will be really cool (he's a very talented photographer). We don't know when we're going to see everyone, didn't plan it all out, but hopefully we'll get to spend a lot of time with everyone because it's doubtful our finances will allow us to make trips like this often.

A big part of me really wants to spend time with my mom and dad, but they live about 9 hours from where we'll be staying. The good part is my mom will be visiting us in about a month, but I'll still be longing for time with my dad (who can't come because he's in college right now). We always have great conversations on the phone but it's not the same as being there face to face.

We're Going Mac

Last night I gave a proposal to the church to amend the budget to allow the church staff to purchase new computers to replace the computers that were not getting the job done (or rather hindering us from being effective on the administrative side of things). For many different reasons it became clear that Mac was the way to go for what we wanted to do.

This morning the purchase was made and arriving next week will be our 4 new Mac computers, which we're very excited about!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Two Updates On Thursday

Thursday night was a long night, but awesome!

It started with a Youth Leadership Meeting (we call ourself the Servant Team). It was followed by a bible study, which cut us short on time. The conversation was going awesome and very productive; we just needed more time! I was absolutely blown away by our two ladies, Teresa and my wife, with how insightful and dead-on they were concerning things we need to be more aware of and begin doing. Not to mention them stepping on my toes with something I need to be more pro-active about (I can't give specifics, not for my sake, but for those involved). I'm beginning to see the chemistry in this group and I can't help but be excited! I mean, everyone brought so much to the table, but I think the rest of us were impressed with our ladies.

We talked about the difference between being inward focused and outward focused, and while we want our youth to bring other youth it is not the job of the youth to do so as much as it being a passion we hope to instill in them. And hopefully we'll create an environment that is worthy of that. We talked a lot about going out and we talked a lot about big events to draw new people in, but not as one time events but as both a focus and lifestyle.

All of them have expressed how they've never been on a team like this, where they are allowed to take ownership in the ministry, not always being told what to do all the time (or just being thrown in without any direction or training). I think it's beginning to show that they're getting comfortable with the idea.

There there was the bible study. We meet first to have a meal, but with the Servant Team meeting being right before it the meal was delayed, which was fine because a few of us took the time to beat each other up on Wii Boxing. That was lots of fun.

Maybe the Servant Team meeting has some of us off onto the right foot or perhaps it was something else, but from the time the meal started it seemed that there was a true feeling of fellowship. Those that barely knew each other were talking like old friends. It was great to witness and participate in.

Then we got to the Bible study. We have started looking at a series call The Way of the Master. This was week 2. Week one pretty much just pointed out the fact that it is the occupation of every believer to be sharers of our faith with others and because of this fact we need to prepare to do our job well. At the conclusion of week 1 they had to go out and ask two Christians three questions about evangelism. So the Bible study this week began with us sharing the responses we got from other Christians. It was obvious that from our the responses we shared that most Christians we know don't share the gospel often, if at all, and the primary reasons were fear of rejection, fear of not knowing what to say, fear of misrepresenting Christ, and feeling ill-prepared.

We watched a 20-25 minute video that took us through tons of scripture putting the passages into context and helping us to understand a few concepts about false converts (through incomplete or false Gospels), God's Law, talking with people and not arguing with them, helping people understand they're need for Christ in an non-offensive way, and legalism and grace. Then we discussed these things and wow what an incredible discussion. It's nothing short of awesome!

It was a great night!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Wednesday Night Review

We've been talking about myths people have for a while now, calling the series "Biblical Myth Busters" and tonight we talked about the myth of the "Prophet Jesus." We went on a quest to expose the myth that Jesus was simply a good teacher. Here are a few points they were given to think about:
  1. Even in Jesus' day people were confused about who Jesus really was. Jesus called Peter "blessed" for knowing the truth that Jesus was the Son of God (Matthew 16:13-17).
  2. Jesus can forgive sins (Mark 2:5-12). What "good teacher" has the ability to do that?
  3. Jesus has power over life and death (spiritually and physically), since when do "good teachers" have that kind of power? (John 8:51; 10:17-18; 11:25)
  4. Jesus says that he and the father are the same person; if you knew one then you would know the other (John 14:7-11).
  5. If Jesus was such a "good teacher" then either everything he said was true and good or he was lying, and therefore not a "good teacher".

Frodo the Heart Breaker

We took Frodo to Petsmart to get him some apparel, for he had none yet. We decided on this studly sailor outfit, so he can impress the ladies.

And on the way home we saw that the brand new Petco was now open, so we swung in there and found Frodo a sharp looking polo shirt for more casual wear.

Frodo is officially ready to go out on the town!

Frodo, The Food Thief

It's a little boring to watch. Too bad I don't have a Mac or something so I can put in some voice overs. You can just imagine what Frodo is thinking. "What's that noise Lilly?". . ."Look over there!!!". . .

But Frodo does this every single night! Lilly often growls and barks at him.

If you click on the video and view it on YouTube Frodo talks.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Where Is The Youth Ministry Going?

The Youth Leadership Team has been talking about where we're going. We have been meeting for about 4 months talking about this subject (we don't meet often; I don't like meetings). Pretty soon school is about to start and we're trying to gear up for it.

At our last meeting we decided there are three main areas we need to place our focus on:
  1. Youth can't wait to get to school and invite their friends.
  2. The youth group is serious about developing a relationship with God.
  3. Students know their Bible.
This isn't the only thing we need to give our attention to, if so then we would have a very incomplete ministry. But as we looked at where we are at this moment these were the ones we knew we needed to work on the most for now. Our focus may change in another 6 months; in fact I'm willing to bet it will change within a year.

How did we come to this conclusion?
  1. We're small and we know youth can reach youth better than we can. We want them to really want to invite their friends because something awesome is happening here. Not simply to increase our numbers or because of some lame guilt trip that if they don't invite their friends then they aren't really close to God. We want our youth to be excited about what happens at church.
  2. We see our youth, as a whole, either not see their need for God or treat God as an elective in life, an extracurricular activity. We want our youth to see God as THE ACTIVITY!
  3. We've noticed that pretty much all of our youth can name maybe 3 books of the Bible. They haven't grown up in an environment immersed with the Bible or attending church. This also means that every time they're asked to turn somewhere in a Bible it becomes a "teachable moment" because they for most of them, they have infrequently (or never) ever opened a Bible before. And this also means they don't know even the most common bible stories (Noah and the Ark, Jonah and the Whale, Moses and the Red Sea, Adam and Eve, etc.).
For those of you reading from back home, let's just say Sarah and I are not in the Bible-Belt anymore! I know that the youth currently coming are not the norm around here. Most youth know a little more about the Bible than the group I currently have, but these youth are coming and they're interested. Praise God!

Tomorrow night the Youth Leadership Team are getting together to talk about how we can accomplish these three goals, which we strongly feel God has put before us. We'll be discussing strategies and tactics while we try to gear up for the new school year.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Wednesday Review

We've been talking about myths and last night we talked about the myth of the "Vending Machine God." Pop in your quarter, press the right button and all your prayers are answered. The point of the lesson was to help the youth see there is a big difference between wishing and praying.


Frodo getting a bath in the sink
Frodo at puppy training

Frodo is one of my most favorite things in this world, so I figured I could blog about him. He will be six months old on July 10. His birthday is two days after Gwyn's. When we got him in March, he and Gwyneth weighed the same. And because Gwyn wasn't gaining weight fast, they stayed neck and neck for a few months, which made it pretty interesting. We could pick up Frodo and say, "Gwyneth must be about this big and is this heavy".

Frodo has his papers, even though his father is a long haired and his mother is a short haired chihuahua. Because he is mixed he is the cutest thing ever! I don't see why more breeders aren't mixing the two. He doesn't have the full mane or tail of a long haired, but he definitely has more fluff than a short haired. Behind his ears is really fluffy. He really is the cutest chi I have ever seen!

I have never seen another dog that is as sweet and affectionate as Frodo, at least to Terry and I. He is afraid of everyone else. Luckily that fear hasn't turned into him nipping and biting at other people like some chis do. With Terry and I he is the sweetest companion! If we let him he would give us kisses 24/7. He doesn't play rough with us, which is good because he has sharp little teeth.

We went to PetSmart for a puppy training class that lasted 8 weeks. Frodo learned how to sit, lay down (which the trainer didn't think he would ever do, most small dogs won't lay down, but Frodo does!), stay, leave it, and shake. He can also fetch pretty good, which is quite entertaining to watch when we give him a normal size tennis ball. He has to carry it by the fuzz. He is, for the most part, an obedient dog, although he is still in puppy mode so we aren't too hard on him yet like we are with Lilly.

Weighing in at just under 5 lbs, he is the medium size for a chi. He is too big to be a teacup by a few lbs, but luckily he is quite smaller than chis can get. To breed, the male should be under 6 lbs, preferably under 5, so Frodo just made the cut. We plan on breeding him, and maybe one day getting a female so that we can have the puppies at our house! He was the cutest puppy ever, so I know that he will have cute puppies!

We are bringing him to the OBX with us, so if you see us, you will probably see Frodo. Other than Terry, Frodo is my best friend here. And Frodo and Lilly get along great! They play for hours everyday.

Sarah Elizabeth

Please Pray For Anthony

Anthony V. is a 12 year old boy with CF.

Very early this morning this young boy received a double lung transplant. There's a lot left in this procedure so please pray for Anthony.

His family is giving updates of his progress here.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Missing You

To all of our friends and family back home, we miss you. This has been a very lonely and boring six months here because we have been without you. Up until a month or so ago we have had no friends our age. We love our church and the awesome people there, but I don't think that 60 and 70 year olds really would enjoy coming over and playing on the wii with us. So, Terry and I have had to entertain ourselves and each other, for the most part.

Being the big movie fans that we are, we have gone to the movies about once every week, sometimes more, sometimes skipping a week. Sadly, we have only been to the beach once...sigh. We went kayaking once on an amazing trip in the lagoon. We used to go to Walmart it seamed every other day for a long time; not so much anymore. We go out to eat some (yum! Panara salads!). And the rest of our off time we spend sitting on the couch on the computer, playing the wii, or watching the newest Netflix.

After we were here for a while I think that Terry could tell how lonely I was, and that is where Frodo fits in. Frodo is the best companion dog in the whole world! Much more fun than our other dog Lilly, sorry girl. He really came at a good time for me.

A few weeks ago we met a young couple that just started coming to our church, and we have hung out with them several times. Terry and I both see great potential in this new friendship, so we are very excited about them! It feels so nice to hang out with other young Christians!

We are flying up on the 15th for a week, bringing Frodo along, and I can't wait! We will be staying with family and hopefully visiting with many of our friends. We will get to see Tricia and Gwyneth. We moved to Florida the day after Gwyneth was born. Tricia was in a coma. I know that after a week back home (yes, the OBX is still my home, not Fl) with all of our family and friends I will not want to come back to Florida.

All of that just to say, I am missing you.

Sarah Elizabeth