Monthly Archives: May 2008

Packin’ Slushee

By | Just Thoughts, Message Series, NewSpring | 4 Comments

There’s an interesting story posted on the Eagle website this morning. Seems a customer, a guy in his 50’s was in the drive-through at Spangle’s on North Rock, and for some reason, he was unhappy with the way his order was processed. Instead of sharing his complaint with the server at the window he did something that got him in the paper, and evidently caught the interest of the Wichita police. The title of the article reads Unhappy customer throws a fit—and a drink—

That’s right, the guy parked his red truck in the parking lot, walked into the restaurant, and threw his orange slush at the employees. Witnesses say he nearly hit another customer on his way out of the parking lot. It seems the police are looking for the hotheaded slushee hurler.

What’s happening out there? Why are people losing it like this? You would think a guy this old would know better. More importantly, how would you deal with a guy like this if he lived in your family?

That’s why I’m about to start Packin’ Heat.( I don’t mean carrying a gun, it’s the title of my new series.) I honestly believe it’s the series of the year to date. We’re going to look at what’s causing people to be so angry, how to survive in an angry world, also how to deal with anger issues in our own life. It all starts May 31/June 1. I can’t wait. The theme is Old West, and the first message is Last Train Out. It’s going to be huge.

In the meantime, if you see a guy in a red truck with a face to match, winding up with an orange slushee in his hand, don’t forget to duck. Just call 911.

Mark

NewSpring TV

By | NewSpring | 3 Comments

I got dragged kicking and screaming into TV. For years we’d been broadcasting on the radio, a weekly, and a daily broadcast, and I was not too sure I wanted to continue that.  (Isn’t it ironic, initially I was stubbornly reluctant to accept God’s call to preach because I wanted to have a career in broadcasting? Over the years, God showed me when I surrendered to His plan, He could give me more broadcasting than I could handle.) Anyway, I thought maybe it was time to pull the plug. And then our local CBS affiliate offered us airtime at a price that was too good to pass up.

 

My objections were numerous. First, I have a face for radio. Beyond that, I worried that the cameras would make me nervous. Maybe even change the worship dynamic. I’d seen too many churches start doing TV and before long the tail was wagging the dog. I worried about the stigma. But finally, I set it all aside figuring not that many people would watch.  I was wrong. Way wrong!

 

What God has done the last few years with NewSpring TV is nothing short of miraculous. I now stand corrected. Thousands and thousands of households in our region tune in to at least one of the weekly broadcasts.  The results have been what we hoped for and beyond.  Many have accepted Christ, lives have been turned around, and locally, the broadcast has served as a huge front door for NewSpring Church.  People who are homebound, imprisoned, living in outlying areas depend on NewSpring TV for spiritual infusion.

 

But in the last twelve hours, I’ve been amazed at something else that I probably don’t think about enough. Three different people stopped me in a restaurant, a theatre, and a school with that telltale question, “Aren’t you the pastor at NewSpring?” They then proceded to tell me what the broadcast meant to them, and the names of the churches they attended.  Three different denominations, Methodist, Lutheran, and Greek Orthodox. That got me thinking about how blessed we are at NewSpring. Think about this:

 

1.        The Christian community in our area doesn’t see NewSpring Church as a threat. The word is on the street that NewSpring isn’t after church people. We’re not into the member-swapping thing.

2.       Although all three people I met were content worshipping in their churches, they were buzzing about what God is doing at NewSpring Church. 

3.       I was reminded once again how important it is to keep the message right where the Bible is. When churches just communicate what God says, not veering off into politics, denominationalism, or peripherally irrelevant stuff, lives are changed and God-followers are edified.

 

I guess I was just surprised to see how much God is blessing the Christian community through NewSpring TV. I love that. I never feel in competition with other Bible-based ministries in our area. If a preacher communicates the truth, I’m a fan.  If NewSpring Church can be even the smallest asset to another faith family, then that’s just more awesome than I have words for.

 

Mark

Odyssey Amnesty

By | Just Thoughts, Message Series, NewSpring | No Comments

If you started the year with us on Odyssey 08 (that is, reading through the One Year Bible) and at some point you missed a few days, then tried to catch up, only to get overwhelmed and quit, I have good news for you! This is Odyssey Amnesty Day! Of course, I just made that up, but the reason is that today is a great day to jump back in.

Here’s why: The Old Testament reading is at the beginning of 1 Samuel. This is the beginning of a whole new era in the nation of Israel. You’ll read about the story of Samuel’s mother who could have no children but God did a miracle in her life. From that miraculous beginning, you’ll read about the life of Samuel as he grew up in a very unusual way, living at the Temple. Even as a boy, God spoke to Samuel personally and throughout his entire life, God gave Samuel an amazing role to play as the nation of Israel becomes a kingdom for the first time.

In the New Testament, today’s reading is early in the book of John, which finds us in the middle of Jesus’ ministry. In John 5, Jesus heals a man who had been sick for 38 years. As your read, notice how excited the Jewish leaders are when this amazing healing takes place.

The reading in Psalms goes over the story of how God has blessed Israel for many generations. Notice the last verse in this passage that answers the question, Why?.

The two verses in Proverbs remind me of an upcoming series, “Packin’ Heat.” Notice that the understanding person has anger, he just knows what to do with it. Check it out.

Welcome back aboard on our Odyssey!

Mary Alice