Are there specific callings?
youth ministry, children's ministry, missions, worship, etc


Is there one calling and different passions?

everyone is called and what we do with the call comes from the passion God has given us

I would love to hear your thoughts on this matter? Does it even matter. Is there such a thing as a full time or part time call?

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Monday, September 28, 2009 Posted in | | 2 Comments »

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Saturday, September 26, 2009 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

This went went by really fast. A lot of catching up to do from vacation. Seems like vacation was forever ago.

Did a lot of strategic planning this week. I am debating about sharing it on the blog.

We have a lot going in the next six weeks. Our calendar is a joke.

Spent some time pondering old wounds this week. At first I was mad at myself and then I realized that letting them "air" a little will help bring healing.

Wednesday was an incredible night for Thrive.

Mowing Mt Gordon was not a fun task this time. A week of rain is not kind to grass that already need mowing. It was like mowing hay in some areas.

There are some idea turning over in my mind for 2010 that is going to be unreal. Got to put them through my filter and my process to make sure I am not just crazy.

Excited about the Church Picnic tomorrow. I will be speaking in the service. Really feel like God has given me some thoughts to share. Praying for a good day.

Fast-A-Thon is a week away. Really excited about what God is going to do during that weekend.

Got to get back into the gym next week. Was rolling along really good but vacation messed up my pattern.

Got to finishing mowing today before the GA game and the Braves game this afternoon.

Hope you are having an awesome weekend!

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Friday, September 25, 2009 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

Every Wednesday is awesome but this Wednesday had a different feel to it from the beginning.

Love having Alex playing the violin with the Worship Band. It helps with the fullness and adds a really unique element.
Patric is doing an awesome with our pre-service stuff. I really believe that it is an important part of the night.
My favorite part of the night was when we were closing in worship and the students refused to quit worshipping and seeking God.
I believe that God is setting us up for something big. We just have to worship Him and be ready.

Some things we talked about:
Because worship was so long I just shared from my heart out of Acts 3. Peter was tuned into God that he noticed a man that should not have been on his radar. He was so tuned into God that he did not allow the failures of his past to disqualify the purpose of his future.

Upcoming Events:
The Speed-the-Light Fast-a-Thon is October 2-3. Meet at the church at 5 p.m. and the fast will begin then. We will spend the night at the church and the fast will last until 5 p.m. on Saturday. During this time we have two services, prayer time, service projects, team games, and more.

This Wednesday we start a new small group format in Thrive. The last Wednesday night of the month we will break out in small groups after worship and discuss the messages from that month's series.

Game On begins in October. It is our Homecoming month and we will have a campus challenge. It is going to be an unforgettable month.

For more updates and podcasts check out

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Thursday, September 24, 2009 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

The hardest part...

of letting go is holding on

of trusting is not knowing

of moving forward is standing still

of having faith is not trusting

of going to the next level is never being there before

of caring is seeing people hurting

of transparency is being exposed

of going somewhere is enjoying the journey

God is shifting some things in my heart this week. The journey to the next level will not be an easy one, but it is one that I am willing to take. It will not be one of connivence but commitment. I am committed to being who God created me and called me to be. I am committed to this generation and doing whatever it takes to see them become who God has called them to be.

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Wednesday, September 23, 2009 Posted in | | 1 Comments »

We have heard it said that life is not fair. We know that but that does not stop us from questioning things when they happen. Why? Why did this happen or that happen? Why me God? Why now? Many people will tell you not to question God. To question God is to doubt Him. That is about as true as drinking Chick-Fila milkshake twice a day will make you skinny. If God is not big enough to handle our questions then He is not big enough to be God. He did not rebuke Job for asking why. He did not give him an answer. He did not rebuke Mary at the tomb of Lazarus when we questioned Him. He can handle the tough questions of life.

I have found that the times I question the "fairness" of God is when people that have hurt me or hurt the people I care about the most goes unpunished. It is perceive that they get to walk out of the fire that they causes unscathed. It is when we walk to sit in the seat of judge. When think we know how to deal out the punishment of the world better than the Creator does. God is not fair. You can not find it anywhere in His Word. He is a just God.

That is hard to accept at times. It is hard to trust that He really does have it under control. The sooner that we do accept that He does work things our for good and for His glory. As soon as we remove ourselves out of the victim seat and drop our accusing finger, the sooner that we can live in peace. God is not looking for a police department walking around writing citations for His justice. He is looking for men and women who love Him, worship Him, and accept His ways are higher than our ways.

I believe that it takes a certain level of faith to say that you really do not understand a situation but you understand you are not in control. It is not your call. You accept that it is not your judgement to pass and move on. That my friends is faith that pleases God.

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Tuesday, September 22, 2009 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

So I had a question the other day and would love to get your input.

Is it better to figure God out?
to know why He does what He does


Just know Him and trust Him?
trust that He has everything under control and not want to know the reason

Is there a difference? What are your thoughts? Can you search, guess, and figure yourself past faith?

I would honestly love your feed back on these questions?

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Monday, September 21, 2009 Posted in | | 1 Comments »

Today Pastor Steven talked about God's health care plan, here are some thoughts:

  • Just like our health care plan comes at a high price, so does God's. The premium was payed by Ehe life and death of Jesus.
  • The cost was too much for us to pay.
  • Unlike other health care plans, everyone is covered in God's. Our government can not take care of everyone but God can.
  • We do not have to qualify for God's health care plan - just believe in it.

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Sunday, September 20, 2009 Posted in | | 1 Comments »

If you know me, you know there is not that I love more than this generation. I believe that Thrive is some of the most awesome students in the world and that I am truly the luckiest Youth Pastor alive. Here is a note that one of Thrive's students posted on Facebook and you will understand what I am talking about:

I was up late, wondering, and this is what i thought...

1. What If we stop being "Half-Way" Christians?

2. What If we were not Afraid to Tell The World about our dreams of Following God?

3. What If we Trusted God instead of Doubted him?

4. What If we Went Out of Our Way and Comfort Zone?

5. What If we loved everyone like He planned for us to?

6. What If we loved them Unconditionally?

7. What If we Gave without expecting anythin in Return?

8. What If we did it without eyes Watching Us?

9. What If we did it because it was the right thing to do?

10. What If we did it because we Wanted to, not because we thought we Had to?

11. What If we Wanted to?

12. What If The World said to Keep Quiet, and we Did not?

13. What If those with Non-Believing Loved Ones, Kept on Believing?

14. What If the Non-Believers saw that, and started to Believe?

15. What If we did not Falter?

16. What If, when we Did, we still Came Back to God?

17. What If we took time and actually Acknowledged "That Kid" in the Back of the room?

18. What if we even Accepted her?

19. What If we made Constant and Passionate Effort to Reach Out to those who are Hurting?

20. What If, when faced with a Conflict, we Prayed instead of Cursed?

21. What If, instead of telling Non-Believers all the reasons why they're Wrong, we would Shut-Up and
Listen, then Share what we believe and why?

22. What If we showed Compassion and Love, instead of Criticism?

And What If,... We Made A Difference?

... Just wondering...

Lezlea Pittman is a young lady that is not only changing Thrive but she is changing Stockbridge High School and her world! What if....What if the church as a whole caught this?

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Have had a vacation hangover for the last couple of days. Really have not been motivated to do anything.

Gave a face lift to this site. Really happy with the new look. Think it is missing something though.

I have been slowly working on Having to restart it from scratch when my computer crashed.

I have GSOM this weekend. Two more classes after this month and I am eligible for Ordination.

Have loved the time off but I am ready to get back in the groove of things. I am ready for this coming up week.

Got to spend the week restructuring and rethinking some things. Love what God is doing in Thrive but we have to get ready for the next level. God has something big for us right around the corner. Perry Noble is right, "you can not plan a move of God but you can be prepared for it."

Feel like there is a risk that God is calling us to take. Big risk=big reward.

Hope everyone is having a good weekend.

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Saturday, September 19, 2009 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

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Friday, September 18, 2009 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

Last weekend we were up in Helen, GA for Youth Leaders' Summit. Growing up my family used to go up to Helen every summer for vacation. We used to eat enough funnel cakes to make ourselves sick and my family would embarrass me singing on the sidewalks. We would hike up to Ana Ruby Falls and picnic at Smith Creek. It was something that we looked forward to every year.

As I have gotten older and have returned to Helen, things are not exactly how I remember them. The buildings are more run down, businesses have closed. The once booming alpine village is not what it used to be. They still have tourism and a lot of visitors but not like it used to be, not what it could be. Years ago, Helen passed a city ordinance that all buildings had to be built to their Alpine stipulations. It wasn't until the last couple of years that they have loosened up their requirements for buildings.

One of the sad things is they are now known for having the longest(not largest) Oktoberfest in the world. Before you jump to conclusions and think I am saying the church needs to lower it's standards, I am saying we can become a little more accepting. You can accept people and love them without lowering your standards.

The church was birthed to be the vehicle of the gospel and too many times we have made it into a "perfect place" and if you are not perfect you are not welcomed. Instead of the Bride of Christ it has become the judge of the world. It is not our place to judge or change people. That is what Jesus does. It is no wonder that a lot of churches are beginning to show their wear and tear. And just like Helen, they have to stretch out gimmicks and games to attract people.

The Gospel never changes. Jesus never changes but our methods have to. As long as we are running it through the standards of the Word of God we will not compromise who He is. Too many time we are too worried about compromising who we are. Church has become more about us and what we want than Him and what He wants. God always wants us to go after the lost.

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Thursday, September 17, 2009 Posted in | | 2 Comments »

Just spent 6 days and 5 night in The Great Smokey Mountains.

My favorite part was just getting to spend time with my wonderful, awesome, amazing, beautiful wife.

The first vacation in four years that we did not have something to worry about while we were gone.

Felt really awesome to be excited to come home. Really glad to be home and really excited about things that are coming in the next few weeks and months.

Missed Thrive students this week. Know that they had a blast

Did not do anything eventful while we were gone. Paige laid out by the pool, I slept and read. Read two books this week and working on a third.

Finished Donald Miller's newest book that will be released September 23rd. Will post a review on here next Tuesday.

Got to go to the Smokey Mountain Knife Works while we were up there.

Also went and watched "I Can Do Bad All By Myself." Great movie!

It was great to go but good to be home.

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Last weekend we spent a couple days in Helen, GA at the Youth Leader's Summit with some of the most awesome Youth Pastors I know. The speaker for the weekend was Jay Mooney, one of the greatest minds in Youth Ministry today. Here are a couple of thoughts from the weekend:

  • Jay was the District Youth Director for Georgia when I first went into Youth Ministry. He was one of the first people to believe in me and I am forever grateful for the impact that he has made in my life.
  • One of the highlights of the weekend was getting to do lunch with my old friend, Tony, who I have not seen in eight or nine years.
  • I am convinced that I have some of the best friends in the world. Love spending time with them and love knowing that they always have my back.
  • Heard some of the most practical wisdom for Youth Ministry that I have heard in years.
  • Helen, GA is one of my favorite places. It is an old dying tourist town, but holds a lot of great memories for me as a kid.
  • Octoberfest started the Saturday while we were there and for a couple of hours we were trapped in Alpine hell.
  • Was reminded why I do what I do. There is not a greater passion in my life than this generation. I am convinced more than ever that this is the generation that will change the world!

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What were you doing a year ago today? 365 days ago I preached to the students of Stockbridge Assembly for the first time. The next day Pastor Steven made it official and brought us on staff as the Youth Pastors. A lot has happened in a year, here are some of my favorite memories:

Hosted The Blizzard, a winter outreach night where we saw over 100 students in service and several make decisions to live for God.

Went ice skating in Centennial Park in 20 degree weather and then hiked through downtown to go shopping at Underground Atlanta.

Broom Ball! First time I played and scored the first goal. Lost this year, but better watch out for us next year.

Played flag football during a snow storm while on Spring Break.

Hosted Rock Star Night, a spring outreach night. We played Guitar Hero, ate tons of pizza and saw record crowds.

We have seen Thrive more than double in the last year.

We have made lifelong friendships and have met some of the most awesome people in the world.

We have seen God change and transform dozens of students' lives.

The last year has truly been one of the most awesome years of our lives and ministry. We know that God has a lot more in store for us and we are very excited about it. Buckle up, it is going to be a fun ride and the best is yet to come!

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Wednesday, September 9, 2009 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

Wednesdays are Game Day for Thrive!

This is not a game for the weak or complacent. We are playing for eternity!

We have an enemy but it is not other churches and other student ministries in town. It is Satan and the way I see it, his youth ministry is bigger than mine and I am not happy with that.

We call it Game Day to remind us that Thrive Youth Church does not just happen by accident. It takes a lot of hard work from a lot of people to make it go down.

If we can get excited for opening weekend of football by cheering and acting the fool; then why can't we go all out for the One who created us and saved our souls?

It is Game Day around Thrive today because we take what we do seriously!

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I do not like to be around students all the time.

My heart and passion is this generation. There is nothing I love more that seeing God work in student's lives and to watch them respond with passionate worship. Even though that is the highlight of my life, there are times I really do not want to be around students. If I am honest with myself and with you, there are times that I do not want to be around anyone.

The truth of the matter is we could all use a break some of the time. No matter who you are, you have to rest. The thought concept that you can rest when you are dead will get you to your destination sooner than later. On the seventh day, God chose to step away from His passion (creation) and rest. We are no better than God is and if we think that then we need to really check ourselves.

It is usually in the time away that I get my best ideas and can hear from God clearer. Rest refreshes us and allows God to use us. When we stop and take a break, it shows us that the world will run without us. That God is in control. That He does not need us, yet He chooses to use us.

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Tuesday, September 8, 2009 Posted in | | 1 Comments »

I find my security in other people.

Insecurity is an issue in my life. I do not know where it comes from or really at times how to deal with it. I like to be liked. I want to be wanted. I believe that everyone deep down deals with this issue on some level, but I seem to on a daily basis. I let what other people think about me affect how I act and what I say. The need to be accepted becomes greater than the need to be who God created me to be.

I find my security in life is when I am more concerned of how I look in front of people than how I look in front of God. I find myself performing instead of living and enjoying the applause of man instead of intimacy in my relationship with God. Life is unstable and unbalanced when I fear the judgment of man more than the judgment of God.

We are created to serve man and please God, not the other way around. Man's approval does not carry over into eternity. Man's approval does not save anyone. When my security is in man then I am living an unsecured life. When it matters what others think about me, it takes me away from who God called me to be and do what He has called me to do. It places my focus on me and other people's opinions of me instead of it being on Him and the people around me going to Hell.

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Monday, September 7, 2009 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

Hope you and your families have a safe and happy Labor Day!

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Sunday, September 6, 2009 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

Vacation is 5 days away! We will be heading to Helen, GA for a couple day for Youth Leader's Summit and then off to......well we really do not know yet. We are working on that part but we are going somewhere I promise.

This week went by really fast. It seems like it was just Monday. I am not complaining, I am just saying.

I got to go to my first Atlanta Falcons game Thursday night with some friends. We had awesome seats and a great time.

Our attendance was down at Thrive Wednesday night. Still had an awesome night for week 1 of Turn It up.

I can not tell you how excited I am about next Wednesday. Tweaked my message Thursday and it has me so pumped up.

My parents are camping at High Falls State Park for the weekend. We are driving down there to hang out today for a while.

There are several signs in my life that tell me that I am ready for vacation. One is the fact that I do not want to get out of bed in the mornings. The other is the fact that my mercy filter is pretty damaged. I am not giving people enough mercy and grace. I am working on that.

Very excited about the opportunity to review Donald Miller's new book, "A Million Miles In A Thousand Years" on Challenging Normal. I am about 1/3 into it and love it.

Got my truck back Monday from the shop after 6 weeks. So glad to have it back.

Hope you guys have a safe and happy Labor Day weekend.

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Saturday, September 5, 2009 Posted in | | 1 Comments »

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Friday, September 4, 2009 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

  • The set looked awesome Wednesday night. Robin and Katie did an awesome job painting it.
  • It was the first week of the "Turn It Up" series. I am excited about what this series is going to hold.
  • The band opened with The Fray song "Never Say Never" and rocked it out.
  • Our attendance was down some but the service itself was awesome.
  • Lots of students made commitments to "Turn It Up" in their relationship with Jesus.
  • The altar was not come down to the front and get prayed for, it was go and apply what we have learned.
  • Already gotten a couple of "Turn It Up" stories from students.
  • I know that I say it all the time but I am truly the luckiest Youth Pastor in the world and Thrive are some of the most awesome students anywhere.
Here are some things we talked about:
We as Christ Followers are called to live loud and not be ashamed of the Gospel of Jesus Christ according to Romans 1:16.

It is time that we stop treating our relationship with Jesus like a relationship with an ugly boy/girl friend and bring it out in public.

We have to live loud because the world is listening. They are listening with their:
Eyes - They want to see it. Is the volume of your actions louder than the volume of your words?
Hearts - They want to feel it. Is the volume of your reputation louder than the volume of your relationship with Jesus?
Soul - With eternity in mind. Is the volume of your decisions louder than the volume of your dreams?

Upcoming Events:
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Speed-the-Light Fast-A-Thon is October 2-3. We are getting sponsors for each hour that we are fasting that week. All monies raised go towards our Colombian Speed-the-Light project.

September 16th is a game and chill night at Thrive. Bring your favorite junk food and your favorite game. Everything kicks off at it's normal time. should be back up some time next week with podcasts.

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Thursday, September 3, 2009 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

People who fight over the style of worship and church but yet will not fight to keep people from going to Hell.

People who choose to make one bad decision after another and love to blame their life falling apart on excuses and other people.

People who place value on things and appearance above other people.

People that complain about everything and yet refuse to help with anything. They are apart of the problem.

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Wednesday, September 2, 2009 Posted in | | 0 Comments »

Transparency has its place but it also has some draw backs. There are so warnings that I should issue with being transparent:

You have to be careful who you are transparent around. Though you want to be real and authentic around everyone, everyone is not ready for that. Transparent people make with agendas and motives nervous and uncomfortable.

Being transparent is like living in a glass house. You allow everyone and anyone access to your live. Understand that not everyone is going to agree with. If you are going to be transparent then sometimes you have to have tough skin.

Choosing when to be transparent is not being fake, it is using wisdom. There are people that will take advantage of your openness. I have learned from personal experience that they will try to us it against you.

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Tuesday, September 1, 2009 Posted in | | 0 Comments »