Archive | October, 2008

Next Stop, Commitment Sunday

30 Oct

The TENT stays up!! At least for another week and a half! Yep, we are planning on a combined worship service in the tent. It will seat 1100 . . . I am hoping we fill it up!

Last night was so cool . . . Words cannot express it. I am thankful to the Family Enrichment Team for all they did to make it happen. There are so many people to thank, I would leave someone out and it would shut the WWW down. All things considered, it was the BEST I have seen at EBC. And it was my 14th Fall Festival.

Now, the train pulls out of that station and heads for November 9th. Many things will happen between now and then. May God bless the work His people are doing for Him!!!!

(PS – I went to the FF in a Timbo McRae costume. But I had to put the mask up, because it was scaring too many little kids)

Fall Festival 2008 REPORT

30 Oct

We have NO IDEA how many people came through the doors tonight . . . Between the tent and the FLC, it was MADNESS (but a good kind of madness). Well organized and well attended. Served 950 hotdogs. Everyone did not eat. Roughly 1000 people here tonight.

I am tired, and I did very little!!!!

Fall Festival 2008

29 Oct

Every year, Ebenezer has had a fall festival since Abraham Lincoln attended here . . . (Okay, not really, but you get the exaggeration). And almost every year it grows. This year is no exception. Hundreds of people have worked to help this thing happen, and tonights the night.

Ebenezerites, we have a couple of things to do: PRAY for those who are coming. God already knows the families that will be touched by a free fall festival tonight. Last time we did this on a night other than Oct 31, we had almost 800 people IN THE COUNT. No telling how many did not register!! We need to PRAY.

We also need to SHOW UP!! Lots of jobs to do, lots of help needed. WILL YOU HELP! If you show up early, park your car as far away from the FLC as you can (IF YOU ARE ABLE TO DO THAT)! Lets save the good places for our guests!

Hope to see you tonight!

Yes, the Tent is HERE!!

28 Oct

When the tent arrived, there were FIVE Ebenezer guys standing in the parking lot. I began to panic. I started wondering, “Whose numbers do I have in my cellphone??” Then I realized the tent guys were about 20 minutes early. PHEW!!

Because, there is one thing I have grown to count on at Ebenezer. Ebenezer folks WILL COME THROUGH, it just might be at the last minute. Slowly they started to arrive . . By 3:45 we had over 40 people.

The two men that delivered the tent gave us step-by-step instruction on how to raise this thing . . . With great patience, it took shape. By 4:45 it was UP!!! The head tent guy told us it usually takes 2 and a half to 3 hours to raise that one . . . We did very well, getting it up in a little over an hour and a half.

What did I see yesterday?? Men, teenagers, and a few younger than that who were united in a vision of erecting the tent. We worked hard, worked smart, and got it off the ground!!! At the end we asked God to bless this tent and do great things with it. I know He will!!!

Thanks, Tent Team! You guys are AWESOME!!!!!

RAISE THE ROOF!! (or, at least the TENT)

27 Oct

Today is THE DAY. The TENT goes up in the parking lot today. This week, Ebenezer will have its single largest outreach event in the Fall Festival this Wednesday. In two weeks, we will have our commitment Sunday of the HOW campaign. What better tool for BOTH of these events than a HUGE TENT in the middle of the parking lot (roughly where the new sanctuary will be)??

The guys at the SCBC say it will take 40 strong volunteers to raise this thing . . . Do I have 40 solid names right now?? NO. But I am praying and hoping. And, if not, I might be CALLING. The tent guy also told us it is a lot of hard work, but a lot of fun, too. I am looking forward to this one!!!

Five Things I learned in the Upstate this weekend

26 Oct

1. The Beacon Drive-In DOES NOT ACCEPT CHECK CARDS!!! Good thing Krissy had some cash!

2. There are SOME Clemson fans who are actually mad that Bowden is gone right now.

3. Drew LOVES the woods and his ability to shoot bb guns and arrows without fear of hitting another house/car/person.

4. Greenville has grown far beyond what I could’ve ever imagined.

5. There really is no place like home.

Good to be in Greenville

25 Oct

Yesterday we made a campus visit to USC Upstate. Not exactly what we had hoped for . . . We tried to visit Anderson, but they couldn’t fit us into their schedule. (Ironically, Anderson is not at the top of Krissy’s list and I told them if they want her, they really have to woo her.) So until early this evening, time with the families.

Time with my family usually involves fixing something. My dad has been an HVAC mechanic all of his working life. Today an old friend called with a problem on a boiler. I went with him and we got it fixed . . . It has been a LOOOOONG time since I had heater oil on my hands. It is hard to wash off. It is there right now. Reminds me of my childhood. Of my dads’ hands when I was a kid. The smell of it brings back so many memories.

With the nature of my occupation, I really don’t get to come up here enough. Sometimes people take forgranted the sacrifices ministers make to serve on their fields. They just expect us to be on call 24/7 and sometimes get angry when we are not. (One that really blows my mind is the number of people who call the office on SATURDAY and then make remarks to me on Sunday about no one being there to answer the phone!!!!) Many of my friends in Florence are very near to their parents and see them often. Not so for us. Sometimes that makes things tough.

(For the record, I AM in the office or out visiting or studying Monday through Thursday. Friday is my day off, on which I ususally only do church work for an hour or two, and Saturdays are much like Fridays. And that is ONLY if someone doesn’t have an emergency or something is cooking that requires me to spend hours on the phone. Sometimes I wonder how long I can keep it up.)

But, anyway. Those are just my ramblings. For now, it is good to be in Greenville.

Life: Full of ups and downs

24 Oct

I don’t like rollercoasters. Funny that a rollercoaster is such a great analogy of life, because I LOVE life.

Have you ever really thought about it? Life is kind of like a rollercoaster. You start out on this big hill . . . Education. Slowly and methodically it pulls you up . . . CLICK CLICK CLICK . . . You get to the peak on seem to be on top of the world. Have the entire Earth beneath you. There is nothing you cannot do.

WHOOOOSH! Down a sharp hill and around a corner. Life hits you so fast it makes your head spin. Up a small hill . . . Suddenly, it all drops out beneath you. Another sharp turn, flipped upside down, and then a big, steep curve.

You get the idea, right?? Life is full of so many dramatic turns. Some of them you see coming down the track . . . Some of them hit you and you never even knew they were there. Many of them alter your course in ways you never anticipated.

And before you know it, the ride is over.

I don’t like rollercoasters, but I want this one to run for a LOOOOOOOONG time.

A Giant "Funny"

23 Oct

This is today’s funny from Mikey:

After dinner, the children turned to Jacob and asked if he would tell them a story. “A story about what?” asked Jacob.”About a giant,” squealed the children.

Jacob smiled, leaned against the warm stones at the side of the fireplace, and his voice turned softly inward.”Once there was a boy who asked his father to take him to see the great parade that passed through the village. The father, remembering the parade from when he was a boy, quickly agreed, and the next morning the boy and his father set out together.”As they approached the parade route, people started to push in from all sides, and the crowd grew thick.

When the people along the way became almost a wall; the father lifted his son and placed him on his shoulders.” Soon the parade began and as it passed, the boy kept telling his father how wonderful it was and how spectacular were the colors and images. The boy, in fact, grew so prideful of what he saw that he mocked those who saw less saying, even to his father, ‘If only you could see what I see.'”

“But,” said Jacob staring straight in the faces of the children, “what the boy did not look at was why he could see. What the boy forgot was that once his father, too, could see.

“Then as if he had finished the story, Jacob stopped speaking. “Is that it?” said a disappointed girl. “We thought you were going to tell us a story about a giant.”

“But I did,” said Jacob. “I told you a story about a boy who could have been a giant.”

“How?” squealed the children.”

A giant,” said Jacob, “is anyone who remembers we are all sitting on someone else’s shoulders.”

“And what does it make us if we don’t remember?” asked the boy.

“A burden,” answered Jacob.

Give so much time to the improvement of yourself you have no time to criticize others.

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Why we do what we do

22 Oct

As I was on my daily journey on the elliptical machine at the Y, (or maybe it was on the exercise bike) I saw a commercial for a new video game . . . A footbal game. Lawrence Taylor was speaking (almost preaching) as he made statements like “when everyone else goes to church, we go to work” and “while they pray for salvation, we play for survival.” Okay, no problems so far. Then, he went down the road . . . THIS IS OUR RELIGION . . .THIS IS OUR CATHEDRAL . . . JUDGMENT DAY IS COMING. (And on and on)

Just reminds me there is a cultural element in our world today that will equate whatever their passion might be . . . INTO THEIR god. A new age principle that states “you are your own god” would lead us to believe that whatever captures our heart IS our god. Sounds all nice, neat, and politically correct. The major problem here is that OUR HEARTS ARE IMPERFECT. Our nature is to want OUR WAY. So, if everyone is their own god, WHO IS RIGHT?? Because we can’t seem to agree on ANYTHING lately here on the 3rd rock from the Sun.

And, NONE OF THIS HOLDS ANY WATER. There is ONE GOD, and He commands that we have no other gods. PERIOD. We cannot serve both God and the world.

Who will YOU serve today?