New Life Sunday — Spills

Earlier this week I was playing outside with the three boys. To be really honest, I was working on some putzy projects and the boys were riding bikes and trying to help me.
 
I love having them close by, I don’t always love their help. Especially if I am applying dark brown concrete stain.
 
I was careful enough to leave the stain and accessories out of reach…for the most part. I was careful to make sure the boys weren’t running in the street or falling off retaining walls…although they did jump a few times :).
 
It was a morning of information overload…constantly looking…calculating…analyzing…I honestly don’t know how moms stay sane.
 
I was a boy once…actually not very long ago (I’m still young right :))…and I remember how skilled I became at getting into trouble. Nothing horrible…just destructive.
 
So I wasn’t completely surprised when I noticed that Ian (our one year old) had found a large water bottle and had successfully tipped it over in his lap and was slapping his hands in the puddles.
 
The good news–it wasn’t dark brown concrete stain.
 
The bad news–it was all over him and the carpet.
 
The moral of the story is that when attempting to keep an eye on 3 boys ages 4 and under you can’t be too careful.
 
Speaking of careful…this Sunday the sermon will come from Mark 8:27-38 which includes the verses that tell us to “take up our cross.” This is a command that demands us to be careful in order to be successful.
 

  • Be careful so we don’t misunderstand the Messiah
  • Be careful so we don’t listen to bad advice
  • Be careful so we don’t commit our life to the wrong person

The consequences to a careless spiritual life are much greater than an empty water bottle.
 
I hope to see you on Sunday!
Troy

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New Life Sunday … searching for greatness

This past week has been pretty busy…which is one of the reasons you are getting my Friday email on Saturday :). It was very late last night when we were getting the kids in bed….like after 11:00pm late…
 
Ian was the first to go down….then Dallas and Isaiah.
 
Typically the boys sleep with soothing music in the background but last night the mp3 player was missing. The player itself is pretty small so we started looking.
 
I asked Dallas and he thought that Isaiah had taken it….
 
So I asked Isaiah….
 
He was pretty sure that Ian had taken it….
 
Ian was sleeping and so I concluded with the boys that it was way too late for us to worry about who took it, we just needed to find it. We looked under the laundry baskets, in the closet, under the bed, under the stuffed animals, in the hallway….we looked all over and couldn’t find it.
 
Searching for something lost has never been a favorite activity of mine, especially when it’s late and everyone is tired.
 
The concept of searching for something is familiar…while searching we hope we find what we are looking for and our effort is typically dependent on the value of the item that is lost.
 
This Sunday, we are going to do a search for greatness!
 
Sometimes we think we will find greatness in our accomplishments, our wealth, our power…the crazy thing is that Jesus makes it clear that greatness is ONLY found in serving.
 
How unconventional…and really unpopular, but HOW TRUE!
 
If you have some time, I encourage you to read through Mark 10:32-45 and invite a friend to join you for service tomorrow at 10:45am.
 
ALSO…don’t forget that we are having a picnic with Mount Pisgah Missionary Baptist Church tomorrow right after the service. Bring a side to pass and plan to have a blast!
 
See you soon!
Troy

New Life Sunday…Roasting Marshmallows

This past week we went to Branson for our family vacation and we had a great time. If you are bored and want to see our first vacation video you can click here: http://animoto.com/play/ZWJE4yiaEzG7pIKKURNqxw. 🙂
 
One of our favorite activities was to roast marshmallows at the campfire every night. I must say that I have begun to perfect the art of the s’more. Not to brag or anything, but I did get a compliment for my “perfectly roasted marshmallow” last night.
 
This did not come without a lot of practice. When you have five kids…roasting the perfect marshmallow is one of many necessary talents.
 
The first night at the campfire I had four going at once and tried a bit too hard and as I was pulling them away from the fire one of the marshmallows fell off the stick.
 
Embarrassed, I looked around to see how many people were going to converge and pull my “awesome dad” card. Relieved, I don’t think anyone noticed.
 
So last night, I had plenty of empathy for what appeared to be a marshmallow roasting novice with a double barrel for his two young children. When he started to pull away he was looking for his path to his kids and the final step to becoming a hero and he didn’t even notice one of his two marshmallows fall off right next to the fire.
 
He was so intent on where he was going that he also didn’t notice his last marshmallow starting to hang rather precariously from the stick. And then it happened….
 
The marshmallow fell from a point that was above his head, dropped past his line of sight and he didn’t even notice.
 
And then I waited….patiently…for him to finish preparing his chocolate and graham crackers…and then it happened….
 
He pulled down the stick…the EMPTY stick…and he got this very sad, bewildered look on his face…and then he looked all around totally confused trying to figure out what had just happened.

On a different scale, we each “drop the marshmallow” in life…we each need time to improve…we each can share our experiences for the benefit of the other.
 
This Sunday, you will not want to miss our service. We will be blessed to worship and pray together and then Gary McClintock will deliver the sermon before we close out the morning with communion.
 
See you soon!
Troy
 
Announcement: If you can find a few minutes tomorrow afternoon to attend the justice fair, that would be awesome!!! Click here: https://www.facebook.com/events/176649609176269/ for more info.

New Life Sunday…facing an ugly heart

Just a few minutes ago I watched the video of a man sharing his story. This story made me:

  • Angry
  • Sad
  • Justified in my anger
  • Question my motives
  • Evaluate how I look at people
  • Feel convicted for my self-righteousness
  • Grateful for God’s grace

What is even more intriguing about this is that Steven filmed this down the street from New Life just a few weeks ago on the final day of My City Matters.
 
I am nearly positive that I have seen Steven while I have been driving to and from New Life. I have never given him a second thought. Up until seeing his story, I haven’t really cared about him or most of the people I see like him for that matter.
 
I have been preparing a sermon on love and am beginning to wonder if Paul was thinking of me when he wrote, “If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.” (1 Corinthians 13:1)
 
I am working through the way in which Jesus answered the lawyer who asked Him how to inherit eternal life. Jesus turned the lawyers attention to the law which states, “love God and love your neighbor.” (Luke 10:27).
 
Then the lawyer asked Jesus who his neighbor was…and Jesus gave him the story of the Good Samaritan. (Luke 10:29-37).
 
The story of Steven Garret reminds me of the Samaritan…the Jews seemed to have as much hatred for Samaritans as many people today have for sex offenders. Yet Jesus made the Samaritan the hero of the story. The Samaritan (in spite of his reputation and history) displayed love while the religious people of the time ignored the needs of the city.
 
You can watch Steven’s story here:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=pQHSvbQq87o
 
I hope you can come on Sunday to hear more about the topic of love on Sunday. We will look closely at John 15:1-17 and Matthew 22:34-40.
 
Press on!
Troy

New Life Sunday…Home Run!!!

Leigh-Ann knocked it out of the park this week. She is definitely a home run hitter so it’s not a total surprise, however this week it came in dramatic fashion…kind of like a walk off homer.
 
Two weeks ago we decided to repaint our bathroom…rather I should say, she decided to repaint our bathroom. (Strike One)
 
It turned out great. (Home Run)
 
Then she decided that we needed to patch all the dings in our walls. To her point, with five kids, after a while, the walls can begin to show some wear and tear.
 
She decided to find every ding in every wall in our house and proceed to spackle them all. (Strike One)
 
Then we sanded and painted with the leftover touch up paint…and it didn’t match. (Strike Two)
 
By now, I’m pretty stressed out. (Foul ball)
 
I returned to Home Depot at least five times in an attempt to match the paint. (Foul Ball)
 
Long story short…after a lot of painting…re-painting…and more painting we found one that was close but not exact. (Ball)
 
Then over the past two days, Leigh-Ann has painted over multiple walls in our house AND figured out a way to blend it in. She has also touched up the trim paint. And it looks GREAT!!!
 
HOME RUN!!!
 
Maybe it’s my OCD, but just seeing all the unmatched paint on the walls was about to drive me crazy. Now, I’m actually pretty excited to go home and admire her work.
 
I feel the freshly painted walls calling me in….
 
This Sunday at New Life we will be talking about a place where we are called to live, but it’s not a house. We will study from John 15:1-17 about living in the presence of Jesus. This is a place that is full of love, obedience, joy and friendship….and of course no mismatched walls.
 
I hope that we can discover together the value of spending our time in the presence of Jesus.
 
Have a great weekend!
Troy

Announcement: I hope you can attend our missions celebration this Sunday at 5:30pm at New Life. We will enjoy a simple meal of beans and rice and a lot of pics and stories from several who have traveled on short term missions trips. Please sign up here: http://www.PerfectPotluck.com/meals.php?t=UBTW1266