Sarah and I had a wonderful time Sunday morning at North Point Community Church where Andy Stanley is pastor. We sat in on two services and really enjoyed the worship and message that Andy brought. We took off around 11:30 a.m. from there and headed toward NewSpring Church in Anderson, SC. They have 4 services on Sunday and we ended up going to the 5 p.m. service. We had a blast with their staff. Sarah got to see their control room and thought it would be cool if we could do the same thing here! Also she saw so many MACs in their video suites that she is now convinced that is what she needs for video editing. After the service we drove back to Atlanta and went to Stone Mountian to see the world’s largest laser show that was going on this Memorial Day weekend. It was pretty cool except for half the world’s population was there and of course the other half was at the Atlanta airport! The show was over around 10 p.m. and we headed for the hotel for a short rest before getting up at 3:45 a.m. to catch our flight home to Kansas. We did many things in a very short time and I had a awesome time with my older daughter.
Just a heads up for everyone…KidzWorld is going to be up in full force this Sunday and the kids in Rt 252 will be learning about self-control. We are doing something this month that we haven’t done before so make sure your kids don’t miss it. Don’t forget Mark will be starting a new series called Packing Heat. Make plans to attend one of our 3 services this weekend.
Sarah and I had a great time touring Perimeter Church tonight. It was so cool to see all the different aspects of their ministry. The tour took about 11/2 hours and we got done right before their Saturday night service started. We went to the service and then Sarah talked me into taking her to Cheesecake Factory. (it didn’t take much) Tomorrow we are going to 2 services at NorthPoint and then driving over to Anderson, SC to visit NewSpring where Perry Noble is pastor. I am a very visual learner and can’t wait to pick up more ideas for our children’s ministry. Being away from home has really helped me see how far we have come in our ministry to children but also see how much more work can be done. Have a great Sunday!
I finished my Judgement House meeting and had a few hours before my next meeting at 4:45p.m. So I asked Sarah what she wanted to do. Eat! So we ate at Chick-Fil-A which was fantastic and then we thought it would be cool to visit the largest aquarium in the world which just happens to be in Atlanta on the south side of town. So we got into our car and drove 45 minutes to downtown Atlanta to experience this awesome exhibit. We paid $10 to park our car, walked down 5 flights of stairs, got to the ticket counter and we found out that it was so busy that they weren’t letting any more people in until 3 p.m. Well since we had a 45 minute drive back to our meeting we couldn’t go in but we did take a picture outside of it to say we’ve been near it. On our way back to our hotel Sarah was talking to Debbie on the phone and we ended up missing our road and headed toward Chattanooga, TN! But I caught it and turned the car around and headed for our meeting at Perimeter Church.
Well we made it to Atlanta around 11:15 p.m. last night and made our way down to the rental car counter. Now usually when you fly in late in the evening there aren’t a whole lot of people waiting for rental cars…but tonight was very different. As we were passing the rental car counters I noticed that there were 30-50 people in line with maybe 1or 2 representatives working behind the counter at each major car rental place. I got to our rental car counter and there were only 21 people in line with 2 joyful, helpful, caring individuals waiting to help each and every customer with a smile on their faces. (Just kidding) I don’t know if these two just got released from prison or their favorite “David” didn’t win American Idol but they were in no mood to be helpful or fast. After waiting for some time, we finally made it to the shuttle that would take us to get our car. When we got to the lot there was another long line of people waiting for help to get a car. By this time I knew something was going on. So I asked the representative what was up with all the people coming in so late. He informed me that not only it was Memorial weekend but there was so much severe weather that many flights that were supposed to be in a 7 p.m. had just made it in. Needless to say we were happy to get our transportation and so I fired up the GPS to help us on our 45 minute drive through Atlanta and handed it off to Sarah to navigate. We came out of the parking lot took a right and then Sarah said that we should go straight at the next intersection so I did. Then we heard the pleasant sound of “off route”! So to recap, we travelled in this car for a total of 300 ft and already made a wrong turn! But we turned around in the middle of the road and everyone around us was waving at us…or at least I thought they were waving at us and headed up to North Atlanta. We made it to our hotel without missing another turn. Way to go, Sarah! But this is not the end of the story.
We got to the motel around 12:30 a.m. and the front door was locked so I pushed the intercom button and waited for several minutes but no one came. I tried again; no one came. So I knocked on the glass and still no one was in sight anywhere. So I began wondering if something happened to the clerk? Could there a robbery in progress? Did the clerk have a heart attack? Should I bust the window and check it out or call the police? I finally decided to take my keys and bang on the door as loud as I could without breaking it. That did it. A man came from the back office and said he was doing the night audit and evidently the intercom is broken. He gave me a free bottle of water (which you know that is worth $4 in a motel) and said he was sorry about 10 times. I told him I wasn’t mad but concerned that maybe something had happened to him and maybe I should have called the police. He was kind of taken back by that and told me a few days ago the same thing happened but when the customer came in, he verbally attacked the clerk, accused him of sleeping on the job and threatened to call his manager. He asked what I was doing in town so I told him and I invited him to visit North Point Church any time he is not working. He thanked me and said he might just do that.
Sometimes God gives us opportunities to share His love with others in the most unique ways.
Well, here we are at the airport ready to jump on a plane to go to Atlanta. Sarah is coming with me this time instead of Debbie. We are on our way to do some Judgement House stuff and also Sarah is excited about going to Perry Noble’s church on Sunday afternoon in Anderson, SC. His church is also called NewSpring. On Saturday we are going to Perimeter Church in Alanta which has a awesome children’s ministry. Sunday morning we will go to North Point Church in Alpharetta, GA, where Andy Stanley is pastor. Sarah is pumped about being in these churches to see all the cool tech stuff as well as experience powerful worship. Keep checking back with the blog. We will try to post some more pics as we go.
Here is a picture of our new portable puppet stage. We are going to be using this tool for our Block Parties and other future ministries. We would love to take this to parks on Saturday mornings and set it up and then invite the kids in the park to come and hear a puppet story. Big thanks to Dale & Michelle Poore and Nate Kubish for making this for us in such a timely manner. This is going to be awesome!
Side note: The Block Party that was planned for tonight has been rescheduled for June 6.
Debbie had a meeting today with some of our great volunteers in KidzWorld and she asked them what they love about working with kids–what brings them back week after week. Here is just some of what they said:
“Excitement of the kids. I feel like I’ve gotta be here for them.”
“The kids always run up to me and give me hugs on Sunday mornings.”
“Being a part of something awesome! The enjoyment of my own kids getting saved!”
“The best thing of all is seeing the kids accept Christ.”
“I love to see each child’s smiling face, knowing that we are providing a fun, exciting environment that is God-filled.”
“I really enjoy the fact that the kids are always excited to be at KidzWorld. It is amazing how much information about Jesus these kids retain.”
“My own learning–the virtues and bottom lines are so applicable in my own life. I end up learning and growing right along with the kids!”
“The kids want to be there!”
“Bonding with my own kids through worship.”
“I just love the large group time with the skits, games and singing.”
That’s just a few of the many answers given. If you have something you would like to add about why you love working in KidzWorld just send it to me.
Next time you are at NewSpring make sure you check out the new additions to Baby Bay. Once again the shop crew takes the environments up a notch! This turtle has been in the works for 2 years. It was sitting in the shop and was only worked on when there was free time from the other pressing stuff they are doing. Needless to say there has been a lot of pressing stuff.
They also added this cool school of fishes. Cosmo is looking at them from the submarine window. The kids and parents loved these two additions. Many dads lifted their child up to touch the turtle. But we all need to be a little careful with the small fishes because they will break if they get hit.
For Mothers’ Day at NewSpring we offered free family portraits as a special gift for mom. Over 150 photos were taken and they turned out great. Special thanks to Lance Cummins and Gina Dreher for all the work they did to make that happen. If you took a photo, you can pick up your 8×10 this weekend and you will also receive a digital copy of your photo by email.
It has been nice being home all this week with the family and catching up on some things, but next week I will be going down near Atlanta, GA to meet with a church staff about doing Judgement House.
We are so excited about the opportunity to train First Southern Baptist Church of Dodge City to do Judgement House this year. That moves the JH ministry just a little farther west in the state of Kansas. The people here are excited about doing this ministry and seeing what it could do for their church and community. I can’t wait for the great reports that will be coming out of Dodge City this October! Make sure you take time to pray for the staff and members of this church as they start on this new adventure. We finished with training around 9:15 p.m. tonight and will be starting again at 9 a.m. tomorrow. After training, we will jump in the van and head home to get to NewSpring by church time. Pray for us as we train tomorrow as well for our safety on the way home.
Here are some updated photos of our bathroom remodel project. As you can see we are getting closer to having it finished. We are still waiting on the vanity to get here but Sarah and Dale matted some photos that she took on a trip to Cottonwood Falls, Kansas. They look amazing in the room. The matte matches the walls and the frames really set things off. So we see the end in sight and the crew has done a great job. It also been fun having everyone working on the project. Actually my job is pretty much just blogging about it and making sure we have plenty of Diet Pepsi in the fridge!
Since this is the second blog post in a couple of hours make sure you read the previous one.