Thursday, September 19, 2013

30 Before 30


30 Before 30 

(30 things to do before my 30th birthday)

  1. Throw a wop party  (Completed 9.1.13)
  2. Perform the spiderman kiss
  3. DJ a pool/beach party
  4. Play artemis the star trek simulator 
  5. Ride rollar costars at cedar point
  6. Build a fire taller than me
  7. Sit in a military tank
  8. Attend a monster truck rally
  9. Ride a mechanical bull
  10. Learn a rap from start to finish and then perform it at Karaoke
  11. Learn to cook a fancy desert 
  12. Watch fast & furious series backwards
  13. Learn to change oil in a car
  14. D&D with girls
  15. Get a crazy hair cut
  16. Give a hitch hiker a ride (Completed 9.18.13)
  17. Light fireworks off at Bethel
  18. Build an arcade cabinet 
  19. Go to a world-famous party attraction and go hard for 24 hours.
  20. Write a brutally honest letter to self to read in 10 years
  21. Buy some stock
  22. Go skinny dippin
  23. Play real fruit Ninja
  24. Office Space something
  25. Get stunned by a stun gun
  26. Learn to play bridge
  27. Run a half marathon
  28. Build a robot
  29. Visit the rodeo
  30. Make it to every tiki bar in the Minneapolis area in one day

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Purpose

Ephesians 3:17-19
So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

For many of you, school starts tomorrow, already has or will next week. For the rest of us, summer vacation is a distant memory, but fall does still have a sense of a new beginning. On the cusp of this start, I wanted to share a few thoughts meandering in my head.  
 
I've been reading this book, called Love Does. It's really awesome and in it the Author, Bob Goff, unpacks the principals of his life and his understanding of God. It resonated with me more them anything else I've read in a long time. In trying to understand God's plan for our life, the author shares this: 

“I think God's hope and plan of us is pretty simple to figure out. For those who resonate with formulas, here it is: Add your whole life, your loves, your passions, and your interests together with what God said He wants us to be about, and that's your answer. If you want to know the answer to the bigger question – what's God's plan for the whole world? - buckle up: It's us.”

He created us and calls us VERY good. God has made you to enjoy life, and the enjoy it abundantly! This school year, live it up. Follow your passions and your loves! Be about those thing and be about him. This is God's plan for you. Along the way, I hope you have the chance to love God with all your heart, mind and soul and to love your neighbor as yourself. Even when those things are hard as hell.

I also hope that you find a community that is lifts you up. Community that can speak truth into your life. As Sherry Mortenson shared with us at camp this summer: To be known is to be loved, and to be loved is to be known.
The only way the Bible can be regarded as straightforward and simple is if no one bothers to read it. - Jennifer Wright Knust

Friday, August 16, 2013

Prayer for today.

1 John 4:19: We love because he first loved us.

God. You are my God. A God of love. 

You ask for two things. To love you and to love people. Oh how I fall short. Daily, hourly, sometime minutely. So many other things become my idol.

The pursuit of a relationship. Spending money on trivial things for the sake of selfish fun, Even the often noble cause of making sure my life has meaning and purpose can become burdensome. 

These things become empty pursuits, when you are not at the middle. 

My fear of spending moments alone, when processing turns into gossip, and when my eyes wander - I know this is not the life you have for me. Help me seek the abundant life. 

Thank you for loving me… despite my shortcomings. Thank you for reminding me what love is like and giving me chances to help show your love, despite how many times I've messed it up. 

A wise woman told me: To be known is the be loved and to be loved is to be known. 

Lord - help me to know and to love. Help me know you, help me love people. 

Amen


Monday, April 29, 2013

Saw this on the blogosphere:

5 Tools to reach teens today:

I thought 1-4 were spot on. Now to work on developing those.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Stones into Bread.


Matthew 4:1-4

Then Jesus was led by the Spirit up into the desert, to be tempted by the devil. After a fast of forty days and nights he was very hungry.“If you really are the Son of God,” said the tempter, coming to him, “tell these stones to turn into loaves.”

There is much to be learned about our own journeys in ministry from the way that Jesus molded ministry - especially as he begins his journey.  As Mathew describes - straight after his time of baptism,  Jesus was lead by the spirt to his ordeal into the wilderness. For forty days he fasted, and we find Jesus in this passage of scripture tired, hungry and weak. “If you‟re the Son of God,” Satan whispers, “turn stones into bread!” This taunt is not just trying to trick Jesus into getting rid of a few hunger pains. It's more of of the demonic voice asking: “Did your Baptism mean anything? What do you have to show for it?  What's the point?

Bruner frames this for our ministry as this: The form this satanic voice assumes in addressing disciples is something like"How can you claim to be the child of God when you are struggling with big problems instated of victories over them. Get rid of your problems [turn your stones into bread], and then we can believe you are in a strong relation with God." …. The issues is sharp and clear: either we believe the Voice of baptism -- "You are the son [or daughter] of God or we believe the other voice -You are the son [or daughter] of God  when you can prove it by signs" 

In Christian circles, we want to prove that we are worthy of the call of our vocation of ministry. Often times, outsiders are asking "how is Youth Form doing?" People like good news, and I like being the guy who is doing good work. But, I often feel like if they only new the real me, my struggles, my insecurities, my failures I would never be trusted with this organization or really more accurately be trusted in anyway as being a representative of God. 

The simple truth is because of what Christ did on the cross, we are adopted and grafted into the family of God and we need not buy into the lie that we need to be anything less then who we are today for God to accept us. No shortcoming can pluck us from relationship with him. We are nothing less then daughters and sons of the king on high. God loves us and calls us to follow him - even when we don't have our shit together.

How is God calling you today to follow him? 

Tuesday, April 16, 2013


“My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think that I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road though I may know nothing about it. Therefore will I trust you always though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and you will never leave me to face my perils alone.”


― Thomas MertonThoughts in Solitude

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Wanderings


1. I joined a snap fitness and now I work out a lot. It's been great for my insomnia and stress management.


2. Durring Christmas Alex and I started refinishing an arcade cabinet. We've got a ways to go, but it's been a pretty sweet project. 


4. Witty and I are co-captains for our Trivia Team "Werewolf Bar Mitzvah" We placed 1st for the first time in about two years ago. We cashed in last week and had a fun party at Fridays.


5. With some christmas money I bought a new LED backdrop hopefully it will be making an appearance at the Dan Ochs wedding. The picture doesn't do it justice. Just know it's pretty cool.


6. Youth Forum stuff is going well. The ministry is busy - we are spending a lot of time promoting the events and rental side of the ministry. I've been running a ton of gameshows recently and love it! Here is a shot of a bunch of our volunteers and staff hanging out in my living room. They are so awesome and when I spend time with them, it reminds me why we do, what we do. 




Onwards and Upwards

-T.