Monthly Archives: September 2009

Changed Lives

Gleaned from the faith stories given at our baptism service this past Sunday:

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•?Jen had lots of struggles in life – she sought help in religion – to no avail. She was befriended and encouraged and eventually invited to ACC by her neighbor and friend Theresa; not judged – not criticized – not shunned but befriended. Theresa and Carolyn and others prayed for her for a long time. Her first Sunday at ACC she crossed the line of faith – placed her trust in Jesus Christ. Her life hasn’t been the same since.

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•?David was on a search for spiritual truth and meaning for many years. He checked out various religions and philosophies but none satisfied the cry of his heart. While on a humanitarian trip to West Africa he rubs shoulders with true Christ followers and realizes they have what he is looking for. This past spring while listening to the teaching series on the Apostle’s creed, here at ACC, he makes a deliberate, conscious choice to trust in Jesus Christ. His life hasn’t been the same since.

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•?Kris grew up with a very religious upbringing. Eventually she found her way to ACC via Coffee Hour, a woman’s bible study ministry. There she was loved by the other ladies as she was exposed to the truth and beauty of God’s Word. Soon she realized that what she needed was a personal relationship with God – a relationship found through Jesus Christ. Since trusting in Him? Her life has hasn’t been the same since.

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Three very different people but now all have the common bond shared by all Christ followers. They are growing spiritually and experiencing the amazing grace of God.

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Today I prayed for the continued spiritual growth of Jen, David and Kris.

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I am praying God continues to use ACC and each one of us to show our world the life-changing power of Jesus Christ. God is doing some pretty fantastic things here. Please join me in praying that our Heavenly Father will continue to show us His power and love.

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Peace,
?Dave

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Leadership Development

Recently a man who had served as my spiritual mentor for many years contacted me. Harv was preparing to teach a class on the topic of how to develop young leaders. He asked me to give him feedback on how he had helped me grow as a Christian, and more specifically as a leader. I emailed him a few, quick ideas.

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As I had time to give it more thought I realized that Harv was always very intuitive about leadership development but was slightly at a loss to clearly articulate how God had used him in my life (and in the lives of many others). So I thought about it a lot more. Though by no means an exhaustive or comprehensive list – here is what I came up with:

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How did Harv develop me as a leader?

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•?He aspired. God could use anyone who was surrendered to His will – even me.
?•?He challenged. A leader must lead by example – I must strive to live out the beliefs and values I seek to promote.
?•?He gave opportunities. You can’t learn how to play basketball by reading a book or listening to lectures about it – you got to just step out on the court and play. Even if you’re scared.
?•?He encouraged. Quick to notice and comment on even the smallest successes – quick to help me learn from my failures.
?•?He prayed. For God to provide, guide, grow, protect and teach me – God is an expert at turning lives 180 degrees!

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Thanks Harv for investing in my life!

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Have you had a Harv in your life?? How did your Harv develop you???

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Peace,
?Dave

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Health Care Headache

All this political debate about health care seems out of control. I?ve heard some ridiculous statements and accusations from both parties. With all the mudslinging, who knows what to believe.

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I?ll be honest, I do think our health care system needs fixing. I couldn?t believe some of the bills we got from the hospital for the birth of my daughter. What?s more is our Dr (an outstanding Dr in my opinion…delivering babies for 30+ years) is no longer delivering babies because the malpractice insurance is too high. I?m sure you?ve got stories of your own. Our health care system definitely needs mending. But…what kind of mending? A complete overhaul? That?s where I get frustrated. There?s just so much garbage information and flat out deception going on. How is a normal guy like me to ever develop an educated opinion on this matter?

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I?m curious. Do you have any good sources to share? Any credible websites, articles, etc. that objectively evaluate this issue. Maybe a source that gives a balanced critique of Obamacare? Love to hear from you.

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Grace,
?Chris

Basic Civility

Kanye West thinks Beyonce’s video should have won the award instead of Taylor Swift’s – so he destroys Taylor’s moment – -grabs the mic during her acceptance speech and makes a fool of himself.

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Serena Williams doesn’t agree with the foot fault call made against her by the line judge – she explodes in a threatening, profanity filled tirade – she ends up forfeiting her match at the U.S Open.

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Republican representative Joe Wilson, of South Carolina, disagrees with President Obama – he yells “You lie!” during the President’s speech – bringing shame to himself and his party.

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The gross disrespect. The complete lack of civility. The basic lack of good manners. I hate it.

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As followers of Christ, I sure hope we do better. We can disagree with others without being rude and disrespectful. There isn’t a good enough excuse to treat others in a shameful way.

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Peace,
?Dave

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A Day of Remembrance

?From the Nasa Website:

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September 11 From Space Station
?Visible from space, a smoke plume rises from Manhattan after two planes crashed into the towers of the World Trade Center. This photo was taken of metropolitan New York City the morning of Sept. 11, 2001, from aboard the International Space Station. “Our prayers and thoughts go out to all the people there, and everywhere else,” said Station Commander Frank Culbertson of Expedition 3, after the attacks.??Image Credit: NASA

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It?s hard to believe it?s been 8 years. The memories are so vivid. I can remember exactly where I was and what I was doing. I was a freshmen at Trinity. I woke up, went to my guitar lesson (a short-lived aspiration…no musical talent in this guy!). My guitar instructor told me that the first tower had been hit. During the course of our lesson, someone came in to tell us the second one was hit. I left the lesson and went to our student center, which was very crowded at this point. We watched the news coverage as the story of the other 2 planes unfolded. Trinity canceled classes for the rest of the day and had a prayer service in the University Chapel.

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Where were you when you heard the news?

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Grace,
?Chris

Small Groups = Big Deal

“Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!”
?–Ecclesiastes 4:9-10

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I?ve been thinking a lot about these verses the past couple days. For those of you who weren?t here, this past Sunday, Adrin Smith filled in for Pastor Dave (who is currently on vacation). Adrin?s sermon was on Interdependence…how we need one another. Adrin challenged us to consider getting involved with a small group or in some kind of accountability relationship. With growth group sign up rapidly approaching, I thought it was a timely message. I can?t say enough about the importance of getting involved with a growth group, or some other kind of small group here at ACC. I hope you?ll take it upon yourself to seek out a small group to get involved with. If you have any questions or would like some more information about what?s available, I?d love to help you out.

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Grace,
?Chris

What?s your plan?

As Dave wrapped up our series on Proverbs last Sunday, he gave some tips for making Bible reading a regular part of our lives. This series in Proverbs gave us a user-friendly reading plan (Take the date of the month and read that chapter in Proverbs; 31 days in the month of August & 31 chapters in Proverbs). I know for me, and for lots of people that I?ve talked to, the Proverbs plan was very helpful.

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One of Dave?s tips for making Bible reading a regular part of our lives was to “HAVE A PLAN”. So, where are you at with that? What?s your plan? Where are you reading now? I?m in the book of 2 Kings. I was there before the Proverbs plan, so I?m going back and finishing it up and then I?m going to take another one of Dave?s suggestions (cycle back to the Gospels every so often) and read through one of the Gospels…I?m thinking John at this point, but that might change.

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Any personal tips you?d like to share with us? I?d love to hear from you.

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Grace,
?Chris