We had an amazing kickoff to the new series “HEY JUDE”. If you aren’t a Journey-ite or missed it, the basic idea is that this is a short, 3-weekened series in the book of Jude. Never ones to miss an opportunity to have a good time, we are connecting the name of the book (it’s author) with the great Beatles song and putting together a Beatles theme kind of series. We are having a blast with it!
Here are a few highlights for me:
• HELTER SKELTER – The main message of the book is about sorting through some of the voices & teachings that aren’t just “out there” but have actually crept into the church. This series has a split personality for me. On the one hand it is a high degree of seeker connectivity. I see “secular” (that term doesn’t work for me, but that’s another post) songs as lines in the water for the new person & the seeker. It is a point of connection; it’s a moment where the seeker can say, “o.k. this isn’t a totally foreign land. Here’s something I get, I’ve never thought of it in this context, but I get it.” Obviously, this series will have a TON of these. ON THE OTHER HAND, the book itself is anything but, a 101 entry-level book. Jude constantly alludes to Old Testament stories. Not only that, he refers to stories in the apocryphal writings about the stories. I may blog some thoughts on Jude’s use of these later this week. Also, Jude’s Greek is good (read “not easy”). His line of thought is not easy to follow. That being said, it is a rich book that I really like. It’s fun challenge to speak from it to people of varying levels of familiarity with the Bible.
• BEATLES – We had a blast with some Beatles songs. We started off with a couple of our high school worship leaders doing a “pre-service” “Yellow Submarine”. I’m not biased but they were THE BEST (the one on the right is related to me). We then did a cool medley – Blackbird, Yesterday, Here Comes the Sun.
• WORSHIP – we intro-ed a cool new song that went off. There was a cool since of anointing that came over us in the middle of the set – it was one of those up the spine senses.
• GOD AT WORK – I love seeing God at work in obvious wonderful ways. On Friday, a guy in his mid-50s sat right behind me who had never been to Church. I mean never as in never. When I am preaching I can sometimes tell when God is really on someone, they look at me with urgency. When the message was over, he raised his hand to say, I’m coming to Jesus! Then on Sunday someone came up to our prayer team after the service that had lost the use of her right arm. By the time they were done, it was completely healed. Cool!
* Pay-back – You may remember that Jason unearthed a pic of retro Ed. Well thanks to J’s parents, we had some tasty payback. JD – then & Now.
• LAND LOCKED – I usually mention a surf session that I had over the weekend, but as you facebook people know, I had a skin peel as a preemptive skin cancer strike. I’m going a little crazing, but I should be back in soon.
• ROD’S 40th – I was able to be a part of my friend & colleague’s 40th B-day party. It’s a great privilege & lots of fun to work with Rod. He likes all the wrong sports teams, but somehow the grace of God reaches even him. That’s a lot of candles. He got them out right before the smoke alarm went off & the curtains went up in flames!
• MATT & TONI – Sunday night we were able to hang out with some wonderful long-time friends Matt & Toni Rings. We know them from Omaha days. We are great friends with all of Matt’s family. It’s great to see them following Jesus consistently for all these years.
I’m off to the desert for my monthly solitude days.
I’m already looking forward to next weekend.