Googling Church

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As I sit in a cozy local coffee shop in the heart of Augusta, having moved here almost 5 months ago, I think about all the times we’ve moved.

Since we’ve been married, 6+ years, we’ve moved quite a bit.  Our stories and our moves have not all been our design, but we know that God writes beautiful stories. Ones that will help us be more of who He wants us to be.

And each church that has been a part of our journey in these 6 years of marriage and family life, has indeed had a lasting impact on my soul.

And if you are a church leader or even just a church member who loves their local church, you want new comers – new city dwellers to be able to find your church, so your church can be a tool that God can use to leave a lasting impact in individual’s lives and family’s lives (like mine.

And when we moved to our new home, we had connections.  Coming from the ministry world, two seminary degrees under our belt, we knew people.  But, what do you do if you don’t know anyone.  Do you just google “church near me?”

Church leaders – do you want the unchurched to find your church?  They may not come first to a great event near you – if they do, how will they hear about the event?  Maybe they will hear about it from the neighbor who lives down the street?  Maybe they won’t live near anyone who attends your church.

My friend William Wright has thought a lot about these questions: about church, church life and community, reaching the lost, how the digital age can be a help not a hindrance to your church, how your website speaks a lot for who you are as a church.

As a church in the 21st century, almost a complete digital age (really who uses the yellow pages anymore?) this is what William says: “Unfortunately, churches lag behind many times when it comes to technology. Many churches today do NOT understand that their front door has changed locations. When ANY person has ANY question on ANY subject they simply “Google it”. The same is true when it comes to looking for a new church home.”

We need to be ready to use tools that are within our reach – to reach out to the lost.  Yes, relationships matter.  And yes digital technology matters.

Digital Rocket is a great resource that you need to avail yourself to.  Learn how “google it” can work for you.

These Are a Few of My Favorite Things

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Are you singing along yet?  What a great way to start out a rainy (thankful!) Monday morning.

1.  A new adventure.  I am bittersweet over having to leave Durham, my fave city, a place I’ve called home on two seperate occassions, a place with dear sweet friends and fabulous eateries, and the first place I’ve lived with my husband in our first home.  But, oh, how I love adventures.  E and I are about to embark on two great adventures almost simultaneously.  First, I’m counting down the days until baby Campbell is here.  Now, with normal deliveries you have no idea when they are coming.  I’m definitely hoping he comes SOON!  I guess my ideal would be anytime before his due date!  Second, my hubs has been called to serve the Bible Church of Little Rock as their worship pastor beginning October 1.  So, once baby arrives, and (Lord willing delivery goes well) we will be out of RDU and on 40 W to the Central Time Zone and Little Rock, Arkansas.  It will be a quick turnaround, but one that God has already blessed and we are ecxited about what the future holds.  I am very thankful for social media to keep up with all these friends here and get advice on how to have a newborn and survive!

2.  A sweet, creative girl told me about this other girl back when I did a photo shoot for her.  Another friend also just told me about her blog and then I decided to look at her site.  If you are looking for a blog written from a modest perspective (she is a believer, active in her church) that talks about makeup, fashion, hair, style, jewelry, etc – then Kate’s is the place to go.  I’ve thoroughly enjoyed it and have been inspired – both for now, and definitely after baby arrives.

3.  I finally have found a lip gloss that I love the color of – and it can work in between seasons! 🙂  Lancome has a line of lipgloss called Color Fever and I had a helpful makeup girl at the Macy’s Lancome counter who helped me pick out this shade of On Fire

3.  Grey and any shade of pink, purple, or blue.  Like this little notebook I picked up at Target the other day. Not that I need another notebook, but sometimes its helpful for inspiration.

4.  These Jane Austen Etsy pencils my best friend picked up for my last year.  Love newly sharpened pencils and Jane Austen – how can you go wrong?  And you can find many modern and classic literature pencils to buy for anyone!

5.  Was introduced to a new store online that sells anything from pencils to stationery to skirts and hats.  Great store, good sales…RUCHE.


Gospel, Tears, and Oatmeal

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You would think that a long (11+ hours) night of sleep would help with my emotionalness in the morning, but not today.  And by the time I finished my bowl of peaches and cream oatmeal, there were tears flowing into it.

Tears – why tears?  After thinking about it, I chalk up to sin and the flesh and trying to outdo the gospel.  Two sins that reigned supreme in my life as a single was independence and control.  I was the only person really calling shots in my life so I controlled my scheduled, my checkbook, my evenings.  It was rather nice.  But, it didn’t help me as I prepared to be married.

Now that I am married and definitely not in control of much (and I am so glad I don’t have to be and that is not the role that God created me for), I find there are still times I struggle with wanting to fix everything.  Funny – that is usually the male role in the relationship – being the fixer.  No, but I strive for it.

And I realize, on mornings like this, that when I strive to fix things that are clearly out of my control or realm of responsibility as the wife in this marriage, I have shortchanged the gospel and made myself God.  This is definitely not the place I need to be. 

When we put ourselves as the fixers or try to usurp our roles, we say that we don’t need God or the gospel.  God has the supreme control and authority in our lives.  He is the reigning King.  And not just over the things that we “give” him – but over everything.  Sometimes, most of the time, we have to pry our grimy and greedy little fingers off of God’s possessions.  They are not ours. 

When we come to know more of our weakness and more of His greatness (John 3:30), then we will come to live in right relationship to the gospel and our famous God.  We won’t want to be in control of everything and we will be ok when we can’t fix everything in our lives – or anyone else’s. 

And that’s the perfect place to be.


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Happy New Year!  As I write this I’ve alreayd run a 5k (with a horrible time, but I did it), had a leisure brunch with 2 good friends, and am now watching the Gators, who seem to have forgotten how to play football, at least for the first quarter.

As I look back on 2010, I look back on it with mixed emotions:

1.  Love the friendships that God has sustained and used to nourish me…some in Louisville, some new and old ones here in the RDU area, and of course some fb and faraway love and friendship from people who don’t see me every day.

2.  I love my job that God has provided for me.  At the end of 2009, I knew this new job was coming.  I was so excited about it.  Then, however, I don’t think I knew what a HUGE job it was.  I mean, you know its going to be great and hard and a God-sized task – but its not until you have been in it for 9 months today that you reaize that you are totally inadequate for it, you are thankful for others who are a part of the journey with you, and you leave every day somewhat overwhelmed with what God has asked you to do.  He is good.  His grace sustains.

3.  The part of my life that I am most disappointed in at the end of 2010 is the lack of healthy living in 2010.  I have gained 25 lbs as of this morning, and that can’t be the case.  So…here we are back at it again.

4.  2011 will be the year of pushing it hard.  In every area: writing (job, blogs, book), exercising (1000 miles, at least 3 races, yoga, kettlebell routines, reading (1 book a week, and I read slow), relationships (which are key to live and I want to keep pouring into those, photography (I love this and I want to get better at it), and cooking (see paranthetical statement with photography).  And this is all not knowing what 2011 will hold…I’m praying some big prayers.  We’ll see how the faithful God and my Provider will answer those.

So, what I do know…God is gracious, faithful, and willing to forgive.  He is the constant and stable in my life.  He will be the same on Jan 1, 2012 as He is today.

But, I can change.  God’s power and grace gives me reason to change.  The cross is my ability to change.  The gospel must impact every area of my life.

Who will be on January 2012 when I will almost be 35?