Thursday, June 29, 2006

Leckie Kitchen Photo Booth

Leona and Me
being goofy
before making
salsa... and
with his

Monday, June 26, 2006


Okay so maybe I'm not completely "uncertain." I'm just not completely "certain." I'm somewhere in between "certain" and "uncertain."

I guess you could say that I'm just "cert."

The good thing about certs is that even when things bite, at least there's a spark in the dark...

I would say that I at least have a spark in the dark.


Uncertain in Texas

I know you can thrive in it. I know you can embrace it and run through it.

But it can really be the essence of church planting paralysis.

And with all due respect to my friends in East Texas, it's a terrible place to be.

And it is where I am today.

...and I don't mean the place and I don't mean Jefferson.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Adventure Beach "Picture Code" Game

More clues to the "Picture Code Game" have been posted and we've now included some hints, as well.

Here are a few more:
  • The clues do not have to be solved in order, but you must solve all of them to reach the end of the game.
  • The first clue is the hardest. I know. It should have been the easiest, but hey.
  • The solved "clue" is a password.
  • ALL of the answers to the clues in the "Picture Code Game" are found in the picture.
  • There are fun "payoffs" and "easter eggs" at each level.
The "extras" of the "Adventure Beach" message series come in 3 categories.
  1. The "Picture Code Game" (Online and available to anyone, anwhere)
  2. The "Real World Game" (Involves going to real locations in Roanoke and the Alliance area to solve the clues. Not yet available, but will be posted after the third message in the series.)
  3. Easter Eggs (Online and in the real world, some only discovered by being present in our Sunday service)
Again, none of the extra features are necessary to enjoy and be a part of the series, they just add to it. That of course, is why they are called "extra features." :-D There is actually much method to this "extra" madness, and I'll explain more about it as we go through the series.

Speaking of, this Sunday at Compass, we're going to CLASH as we look at one of the more freaky encounters with Jesus that is recorded in the Bible. In the process we'll also discover that there is hope for even the hardest of hearts.

And there's a good reason for that.

...But it'll have to wait till Sunday.

Oh, will the mysteries ever end?

Here's a hint: No.


Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Not What They Seem

Just posted an "extra illustration" from Sunday on the Compasswired blog that involves this picture:

Check it out here: Things Are Not Always What They Seem

Friday, June 16, 2006

Dinner With Mark & Tori Bjornholm

Last night we had a blast with Mark and Tori Bjornholm, who blessed our socks off by buying our family dinner at Cavalleros. I met Mark through my blog, and you may remember that he was one of the guys at our gathering of bloggers at the River Nile a little while back.

First, let me say that the food was delicious. My "Chimichanga de Pollo" was a mouth watering crispy rolled tortilla stuffed with grilled chicken fajita meat, Jack cheese, peppers, a flaky crust and ...mmm....Tex mex.....

So we were at the table for about 3 minutes when my lovely wife, Leona "accidently(?)" knocked over her glass of water, spilling the entire contents down my leg! The laughs began there and pretty much continued throughout the meal, much to the chagrin of the other restaraunt patrons, I'm sure! And just to cap things off, Leona spilled her water one more time for good measure before we left...(Leona has a tendency to "talk" with her hands [not sign language] in an expressive manner, something I learned when we were dating and she "accidently (?)" knocked me into the hedges...but that's another story).

Mark and Tori are awesome people. They were gracious, sharp and funny and our kids just loved them. We really enjoyed visiting with them and getting to know them better. Ask Mark sometime about the history, shape and souveniers of Michigan. Hint: oven mitts are very popular. :-D

Thanks, Mark and Tori for a great night of food and fun. It was truly a blessing to us!

Monday, June 12, 2006

Creative Series...

Yeah. This has to be one of the most creative series I've ever been involved with. In fact, I'm pretty sure I've never seen a "preaching" series ever done this way before.

Get an idea of what I'm talking about -

here: Immersed in Adventure Beach

and here: Living The Adventure Life

and here: Adventure Beach Clues.

The "C" of our values is "C3: Christ Following, Creative & Caring." This series definitely covers the "C."

...And it's a great vehicle for our goal of developing more, stronger and closer followers of Jesus Christ.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Coffee With Clay Hilton

I'm just now getting around to mentioning this, but I had a great time of coffee and conversation several days ago with fellow church planter and encourager, Clay Hilton. Clay is the pastor of Mid-Cities Community Church in Bedford, Texas.

He, like me, also hails from the great but tainted state of Louisiana, was a part of the Church Planting network that I started with and is a church planter who has stayed the course through much difficulty.

Clay is one of those guys who is full of wisdom and experience and knows how to dispense it with humility and balance. He also has one of the funnest pictures of "the Pastor's family"on his church website that I've seen so far!

We talked about a lot of things.

We acknowledged those we know who have "fallen" and those who have "fallen by the wayside" in this church planting adventure. We talked about the abundance of conflicting advice we've received from various coaches and well meaning pastors along the way. We talked about how few church planters that we started with are still standing. We talked about God's faithfulness and the importance of church planting.

It was a great reminder of how much church planting isn't a solo endeavor.

Thanks, Clay for the ear, the insight and the encouragement!

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Kim Rocks! ...a baby in a baby carriage....

We have a very cool worship leader. Of the worship leaders I have known over the years (including myself), Kim is by far the coolest. She has a heart for God and people, a great voice, and is a constant source of encouragement. I've known Kim for many years, and was actually her Youth Pastor back in the day. Leona and I are so impressed with the leader she has become and her constant "can do" attitude.

Kim is also expecting her second child in early September. This child is truly a blessing from God as the doctors had told Kim and her husband Ricky that they would be unable to have additional children. Ricky has Leukemia and is on a medication that has put the disease in remission, but it also supposedly ruled out the possibility of children. Well, apparently God and this kid ignored that bit of information and the baby is now on the way!

This has presented some interesting challenges for us for the months of July through September as it is getting difficult for Kim to play her guitar or bass on stage without the baby kicking the heck out of the back of the instrument and throwing the timing off! Well, not really, but you get the idea. It's getting harder for her to lead as the due date gets ever closer.

Anyway, all this brings me to the fact that we are looking for an additional worship leader or leaders to work with Kim and fill in as needed during this happy time! :) We are looking for someone who is talented, senses a call to ministry, can get behind our vision and is looking for a great opportunity for experience. This is a volunteer/small stipend type of role, and would be great for a college student. Generally our style has a slightly edgy rock feel.

If you are interested in serving with us and would like more information, we'd love to hear from you! Drop us a line at the address(es) below:


Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Hoodwinked & Cory Edwards

When our extended family was visiting with us recently, we decided to rent a dvd on one night. After a quick trip to blockbuster, we arrived home with the movie "Hoodwinked."

The "audience" for our dvd viewing was a mix of people, ages 12 to 94. (Yes, you read that right. Leona's Great-Grandmother who is 94 was in the room watching the movie with us.) Kind of fun watching a movie that includes a cool granny with two grannies in the room.

Anyway, as we watched the movie, the "impromtu reviews" from the family assembled ranged from "I've never seen anything like that before" to "that was hilarious" to "can we watch the billy goat scene again?"

I was actually kind of surprised by how much I liked this movie. It has received a variety of mixed reviews since its debut, but I believe that any negative reviews came from people who must have missed the point. The overwhelming majority of reviews since the dvd has come out have been very positive.

The animation has a "storybook" look to it rather than an overly slick "cgi" look to it, which was perfect for the story. And although the movie has been compared to "Shrek" in how it plays off of the fairy tale/story book genre, I felt that "Hoodwinked" was really a different animal all together.

A few things I liked about it:
  • It has a great premise. (Great lesson on why appearances can be deceiving. Things are truly not what they seem most of the time)
  • It was clean. (No need to worry about kids repeating cursing cartoon characters.)
  • It had a great sense of comic timing. (The director has much to do with that - keep reading)
  • It has some unexpected "genre bending" moments (The scene where the wolf walks in slow motion past Red as they exchange glances to the sound of the thumping soundtrack cracked me up.)
  • "An avalanche is coming and I do not feel prepared" (Gotta see it to understand.)
  • It was creative, clever, slightly complex in the overlap of the stories, and it had great lines.
  • I can recommend it as a good family flick that will crack up the parents as well as the kids.
The Guy Behind The Movie:

After our visiting company departed, Leona, the kids and I watched the special features on the dvd. That's when I made an interesting discovery.

When I saw the "guy behind the movie" I said, "Wait a minute. That's Cory...Cory... um, what's his last name? Edwards. Yeah, that's him." I then refreshed the memory of my family by saying, "Grimmace? What is he? What product does he represent?!"" and "Crack that corn, Jimmy! We care! We care!" - All lines from Cory's standup comedy routine from a while back that they recognized immediately.

Some time ago, we had seen Cory's video preview on, and it just cracked us up. You can still read his bio and see the video of some of his comedy here.

Cory is a preacher's kid and Christ follower who is creating great stuff in the marketplace of the entertainment world. "In the world but not of it," while being "salt and light" in bland and dark places. I love everything about that.

I do not know him (and I hope he stays immune to the temptations and struggles of the industry he is working in) but guys like Cory Ewards are inspiring to me.

I think it would be cool to see a film making/art/writing/music school develop out of
Compass Church, eventually. Where the best artists, musicians, authors and filmakers in the world trace their roots back to a church with a heart for Christ and a big vision for impacting the world...

Go rent or buy "Hoodwinked," and check out Cory's blog here.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Adventure Beach

Only have a minute, here.

Thought I'd toss up the graphic of the series that we're starting at Compass.

It's meant to be a bit mysterious, allowing the images to draw you in and build curiosity.

Are you curious?

More later...