This past Monday, I decided that it would be a great idea to leverage the efforts of our three boys to work on a yard project that has been on my mental to-do list for more than a year. We needed to treat our railroad tie retaining walls with a protective urethane.

I figured it would be a good project for them since we were outside, the chemicals would put some hair on their chest, and they really couldn’t hurt anything.

Problem was that I had a hard time finding enough tools for each boy to have his own. Finally, after taking it upon themselves to find more tools, they found a few brushes and rollers. It was the process of looking that became quite entertaining.

They began by going into the garage and looking for anything that resembled a tool. One of their first discoveries was a putty knife. My initial thought (to myself of course) was, “what in the world made them think that would work as a paintbrush?” Another discovery was a paint roller without the cover. Again, I love my boys, but at that moment, I wondered how they could even consider hard plastic and metal as an option to transfer liquid from a bucket to the retaining wall.

The final two discoveries were noteworthy. One was a high-quality roller that I had hidden, hoping they wouldn’t find it because I didn’t want to ruin it. And of course they found it…and of course, I didn’t have the heart to tell them not to use it. The final discovery was a vacuum brush. Of course, I knew it would be ruined if they used it, however for whatever reason, I let them give it a try….and to my surprise and amazement…it worked.

It worked so well, that by the end of the day, I was offering my paint roller to them so I could use the vacuum brush. Ultimately, the boys worked really hard and we ended up having a great day. They weren’t perfect…but then again, neither was I. We each made a few messes but we did much more good than harm.

My role as a leader in the project was to give them direction, support them in their pursuit of resources and to keep them encouraged, fed and in the end even paid :).3 boysa

There are similarities in what I did as a project manager on Monday and what I do as a pastor, Tuesday through Sunday. This Sunday, Pastor Dave is going to bring a sermon from 1 Timothy 3:1-7 on the topic of spiritual leadership. This is a part of our vision casting series entitled, “Going Deep, Going Wide.”

Leadership is vital in every facet of life…and it is especially vital in the church. I hope you can plan to join us for our service on Sunday at 10:45 am.

Have a great weekend,


Signed Jersey…

A few weeks ago I went with a friend to a breakfast for pastors. The featured speaker was Jamal Charles, Running Back for the KC Chiefs.

Or should I say, former running back for the Chiefs?

The starting time was 6:45 am. Since it was so early, I decided to wait until breakfast for coffee. Imagine trying to make enough coffee for more than 300 pastors? You would have thought that it was liquid gold. Pastors bunched in line, politely waiting for one thing…COFFEE! Don’t worry, there were no fights…everything stayed positive…but there is no doubt in my mind, there was plenty of people strategizing internally about how to get some coffee into their waiting cups.

Soon enough, breakfast was over and we were privileged to hear from some incredible people. And the testimony that Jamal Charles shared was simply amazing and inspiring. I am super bummed the Chiefs have released him.

Throughout the morning, there were several door prizes given away. In addition, there were awards for faithful pastors and ministry leaders.

Finally, the last speech had been given, the final question answered and there was one last door prize…a Jersey Signed by Jamal Charles. The name was pulled out of the hat and with my heart pumping, I heard the name, “Troy Campbell, New Life CityChurch” announced.


Jamal Charles Autograph

Not only was I fortunate enough to get a swig of coffee and hear some incredible speakers, I just won the Grand Prize for the day…a personalized signed Jersey from one of the greatest Running backs in KC Chiefs history.

Someone famous, once said, “Life is like a box of chocolate, you never know what you’re going to get.” And for the most part, he was right. Some days can be great (liking winning a signed Jersey) while other days are not so great and possibly even tragic.

So how do we navigate through days that are great and days that are not so great? Where can we find direction when life becomes unexpected and unpredictable?

This Sunday, James Cottier will shed some light on those questions with a sermon from 2 Timothy 4:2 about why we are people of the Bible. There are many reasons to accept the Bible as our authority for life, but one thing for sure is that the Bible is a firm foundation for an insecure world. Whether we win the grand prize or experience tragedy, we have the confidence that God’s Word never changes. And that’s even better than winning the grand prize…and I should know :). Have a great weekend,


Reminder: Tomorrow morning, we will have a men’s breakfast at 8 am. We will continue our “Stepping Up” video curriculum along with some good food (plenty of coffee) and friends. All are welcome.

Friends forever…


A relationship is a connection between persons.

Some relationships are limited to social media interactions while others are packed with investment of all sorts.

Last night at the dinner table, one of our kids was getting the bulk of attention (which is perfectly ok). However, after a while, one of the other kids made the observation that they felt ignored. So, we ignored the point that our child felt ignored. 🙂

After everyone pushed away from the table and began to disburse throughout the house, Leigh-Ann made the effort to connect with our child who felt ignored. She discovered that there were a few other events earlier in the day that contributed to our dinner table discussion.

Relationships are simply a connection between persons, but there is nothing simple about relationships.

This Sunday, Pastor Dave, James and I are really looking forward to sharing some concluding thoughts from Romans 14:1-15:13 regarding relationships within the church. Specifically, among fellow Christians, we will have different opinions on matters of preference and we must accept others without forcing them to see it our own way.

In addition to some shared sermon time, we are planning to spend time answering tough questions on the topic of relationships within a church.

I hope to see you on Sunday!


Welcome each other…

More than twenty years ago I was in college. Wow…I don’t feel that old, but based on the age of my kids and my receding hairline, there is no escaping reality. During that time, I was blessed with some incredible friends. Yesterday, I was able to spend time with one of them.


Phil is really like a brother. We spent four years as college roommates and experienced everything from sports to social life to competition over almost anything to studying together…though we certainly could have improved on that :).

It had been several years since we have spent time together, so prior to our meeting up, we each experienced a growing anticipation.

As soon as I landed, I knew it was going to be a great time…it was 70 degrees and sunny….in Detroit.

The moment we saw each other, it was like nothing had even changed…I mean, I may have put on a few pounds and added a few wrinkles, but within seconds we were laughing and sharing memories.

There was the time we ran out of gas late at night and woke up a farmer to ask for help…and the Sunday morning we ended up in the ditch after a tight country corner…dorm room Christmas parties…highs and lows as youth leaders…meeting our future wives…a time capsule…Monday night football between the Packers and Vikings…I could go on…

Phil is a friend for life…there is no doubt that if either of us had a need, we would do whatever necessary to welcome the other.

This Sunday we will finish up our series from Romans 14-15:13 with a call for us to welcome our Christian brothers and sisters. We have been studying Paul’s admonition for strong and weak Christians, Jews and Gentiles to seek the good of the other. In spite of differences, we must prioritize our unity.

I look forward to sharing more from Romans 15:7-13 regarding our call to welcome each other even if we disagree. And before you conclude that our relationship has always been easy, I want you to know, I drank my coffee out of a Green Bay Packers mug this morning…and I’m pretty sure that was an example of seeking my friends good above my freedom…:).

Can’t wait to see you on Sunday,


Zoe’s Boundaries…


We have a dog that struggles with boundaries. She loves to eat food that’s not hers and run away to trespass around the neighborhood.

When it comes to eating, she settles down underneath the table in a perfect location to inhale scraps that are inadvertently dropped from the forks (or fingers) of our boys.

When it comes to geographical boundaries, she waits for the first sign of a door opening to squeeze through and then runs off ignoring our shouts and whistles.

Zoe, our naughty poof-ball, has always made it back home. Sometimes a neighbor will have her in tow, sometimes-before we’ve even noticed she sneaked out- she just shows up scratching at the back door,  and sometimes we have to go get her on foot, bike, squealing van- you get the idea.

Our boundaries for our dog are more than fair and easy to oblige.

Zoe has an easy life! She gets treats for being good and typically gets away with being naughty- sometimes even getting a treat to entice her back into our yard that she has disobediently left! (Don’t judge-we spank our kids and spoil our dog.)  She has a nice house with several favorite spots for her to hang out. She has her own bed-2 actually, a basket full of toys, gets plenty of food and water and even gets her belly rubbed on demand!

Unfortunately, there is something inside her that still is not satisfied. At the first crack in the door, she will inevitably try to sneak out. When you have five kids that, this happens quite often.

To be honest, there are many similarities between Zoe and followers of Christ.

God has established His Kingdom (the domain of His reign) and within that Kingdom, we have been promised peace, joy, and happiness. However, it doesn’t take much for us to ignore God’s boundaries and attempt to find something better. At any time we live or act apart from faith, we have chosen to go beyond the domain of God’s reign.

This Sunday, we are studying from Romans 14:19-23. Paul is in the middle of teaching that the Kingdom of God is more important than our personal preferences. The bottom line is when we pursue anything beyond God’s reign, we are not living by faith. And unlike Zoe, those decisions leave us with some undesirable consequences.

I hope you have a great weekend, enjoying this beautiful weather! See you Sunday at New Life CityChurch!


Super Bowl Sunday…

In two days more than 100 million people will turn on the TV to watch the Super Bowl. This year the New England Patriots will play the Atlanta Falcons in Houston.

Tickets are starting at around $3,000 each. A thirty-second commercial will set you back about $5,000,000. Each member of the winning team will earn more than $100,000 bonus in addition to their $36,000 ring. The rest of us will watch commercials, eat food…( the National Chicken Council predicts that 1.23 billion chicken wings will be consumed)…and maybe even see some of the game.

Football is a sport that combines strategy, athleticism, and passion into a competition played out on a field where grown men lay it all out to move a properly inflated pigskin into the end zone of the opposing team.

The winning team gets the Vince Lombardi trophy and bragging rights for a full year when it comes to football.

I have no idea what that’s like…I must admit, my team from birth, the Minnesota Vikings may have a new stadium, but still no trophy.

I don’t know what it’s like to be a part of a football kingdom…the Chiefs ruined that in the beginning :). However, I do know what it’s like to be a part of the Kingdom of God. Two thousand years ago, the battle took place on a cross. In the midst of the mundane, Jesus battled sin to the death and won.

Each Sunday, Christians around the globe, gather together to celebrate the victory that towers far above every other championship in the history of the world combined.

Before you settle in for the big game, I hope you take some time to celebrate the greatest victory ever…the death and resurrection of Jesus.

At New Life, we’ve been studying from Romans fourteen and this Sunday,  James Cottier will be sharing a sermon about the Kingdom of God. If you have ever had questions about the Kingdom of God…and the significance for you, I hope you will plan to attend.

I sure hope to see you there,


At the moment, I am hanging with five other guys and together we make up a discipleship group. We are different…no, we are each really different.


Different races…

Different ages…

Different experiences…

Different opinions…

Different family history…

Different tragedies…

Different occupations…

Different backgrounds when it comes to our spiritual backgrounds…

So, you may be tempted to conclude that we are sitting around, trying to make up conversation, surviving the time, counting the hours until we can get back to people more similar to us…


Yesterday, we left for Branson. Tomorrow we head back to Kansas City. In between, it has been non-stop talking, laughter, friendship and some very deep spiritual discussion.

There is one shared thread that has influenced everything from our meals to our entertainment to our laughter and conversations…and that thread of similarity is our love for Jesus. Now don’t get me wrong, we are human and I have no doubt that in time, we would have some disagreement big enough to make us mad.

So when that moment comes, what should we do?

For starters, we should invite the Holy Spirit to empower our love for each other in spite of our differences. The sermon this Sunday is going to come from Romans 14:13-18 and it will speak specifically to situations where Christians disagree.  Life is too short to miss out on the love of Jesus applied to diverse people within a community of discipleship.

I hope to see you Sunday,