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Archive for September, 2008

Back on My Feet

Last week, I got knocked down with a flu bug.  Even though it was rough for a moment, I still had to thank God.  It was the first time that I got sick since I stepped out to church plant in January ’07.  I had not been sick in over one and a half years.  For me, that’s huge!  I always get sick when the weather begins to change.  I’m prone to get knocked down every winter.  Last winter?  Nothing.  Even last year, when everyone was getting sick around me, God kept me healthy. Even my wife got sick and I didn’t catch it!  There was no way I could complain now.  Praise God, I was back on my feet and well enough to close out our Lost series.  I can’t wait until we launch “Hero” next Sunday.  The Creative Team has some cool stuff planned.  I’m anxious to see how it all unfolds.

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Spread

I just want to let you know from the start, that I may be taking this Scripture a bit out of context.  However, as I was reading it during my quiet time this morning, I found it rather intriguing.  In 2 Kings 19, Hezekiah received a letter stating that the Israelites would be defeated in battle.  Many nations fell to the hands of Assyria, so it was assumed that Israel would receive the same fate.  Hezekiah replied by seeking God and spreading the letter out before Him.  He took the matter so seriously, not only did he bring himself into the presence of the Lord, but the letter as well.  Before I preach, I sometimes spread my outline and notes before God and say, “Lord, I need you to breathe on these words. I submit this message to you.”  It’s my way of giving full and final surrender of the message to God.  Even though we try to make our worship gatherings creative and engaging, I want to make sure that our attenders hear from God.  I take those moments so seriously that not only do I bring myself before the presence of God, but the information as well.  During those times, I’m sensitive to anything I feel God would have me to add, subtract, or change.  It’s all about Him!

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Sunday Wrap

We had a great time at The Bridge on Sunday.  Our gathering was pretty simple this week.  For the most part, worship and the Word.  We had a video but it was a 13 second intro.  It’s good to strip everything down and be simple sometimes.  Can’t wait until our next series, “HERO!”

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When I was young, I used to create simple animated cartoons.  I would grab one of my Mom’s Christian books and draw stick figures in the white margins.  They were mostly of guys fighting, made up super hero characters (like Super Jumaine), and kung-fu stuff.  I still can’t believe she let me mess up all those books.  Anyway, this was back in fifth grade and I haven’t done anything with animation since then…until now.  I figured I would do a bit of animation for our Downtown promo video.  I applied the same concept as I did with my book margin animation, making a slight adjustment to objects in each frame.  This one minute video is a compilation of 150 graphic images.  I figured I had enough skills to accomplish the choppy animation look I was going for.  I had a ball, but it took way too much time.  I don’t think I’ll be doing this sort of thing any time soon.  Check it out:

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We closed out our H2O series this past weekend by handing out over 1,200 bottles of free water in downtown Silver Spring.  Originally, we were going to hand them out at the Silver Spring Jazz Festival.  When we arrived at the scene, we discovered that they were selling water.  We concluded that cutting into their sales won’t be the best witness.  One of our volunteers, Shaye, came up with another idea.  We ended up handing out water in front of the movie theater where we meet!  When people asked, “Where do you guys meet?” We could say, “Turn around.  Our location is right behind you.”  This may sound like a cliche, but it happens every single time we give something away in our community.  People ask, “Why are you doing this?”  When they discover that we are a church just simply showing love to the community, there faces light up with surprise, joy, or an “it’s about time” look.  One guy summed it up well, “Free water on a hot sunny day?  That’s what I’m talking about!”  We also raised money for two weeks to provide clean water for people living in Africa.

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Hot off the press!  National Cinemedia will be hosting it’s first annual Theater Church conference on October 22-23, 2008.  Guess where it’s going to be held?  You guessed it!  It’s being held at the Majestic Movie Theater in downtown Silver Spring where The Bridge has it’s Sunday morning gathering.  I can’t wait to see what God is going to do with this gathering of leaders.  It’s a blessing to see this happening in our very own community.

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1NE More Time

Wow, what a weekend!  Our 1NE Celebration went extremely well.  Hats off to my sister, Debbie, and the rest of the volunteers that worked so hard to pull off this celebration at such short notice. One of the families at The Bridge, the Aparicios, cooked the great grub for our after party!  Elaine James made our anniversary cake.  Great stuff!  It was such an honor to witness how everyone pitched in for this landmark occasion.  We broke attendance records on Sunday.  The theater was packed!  We also launched our new children’s environment, Downtown. The set design, which our volunteers designed from scratch, definitely passed the wow-factor test. A few movie going families got a glimpse of the team’s work and their children got excited.    I was completely blown away by the work and creativity of the Downteam team.  Made me want to be a kid again.  If anyone has been supportive over the past year, it’s been my wife.  She has been a super supporter and encourager from since the The Bridge was a vision in my mind.  Thank you, love!

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