Today was a growing experience. I moonlight as a worship leader about once a month. I have led worship several times since I have been at Grace Church, not to mention many other times in many other settings since I was 14. I am no Tomlin but I can lead worship comfortably inside of my gifts and experiences. This week however was just craziness, I have never felt as attacked as I did this last week.
I can’t even pin it on one thing but it was crazy last couple of days. I was tired, busy, practice went terrible, sound was off, I wasn’t crazy about the song order, selection (even though I picked em), not too mention other things, and it all just compounded.
First service was the pinnacle. As usual everyone said it went well, but I just felt attacked and kept thinking that it sucked and things had to be better. I was basically psyching myself out. In hindsight nothing was that bad, it was just little stuff that we as a band notice, but I was so upset. Its funny how once I get worked up about something I just dwell on it. The more I thought about it the worse it was.
I decided that I would be mature and go into my office and spend some time thinking and praying to get my heart ready for second service. I thought this was a good plan and I was really on the patch to calming down and putting it in God’s hands. Apparently God had other plans to teach me that same lesson. I still had a little too much of me in the equation. As I was praying I got a couple texts that I was supposed to be on stage for the closing song. I had forgotten I still had one more song to sing!!! My friend Adam just sang the song (since he was already playing it) and it was no big deal but at the time it was the final nail in the coffin of Satan’s attack to make my day suck.
Just one of those weeks where I saw the clouds forming and just couldn’t avoid the storm or stop the rain. Funny thing is I learned so much so quickly when I “got it”. Guess what my church still isn’t about me. I like to think I am in control and today’s events brushed my ego aside. Ironically enough our series we are in is called faith walk and today sure made me relearn to be comfortable trusting God when I think I know what will happen and even when I don’t.
In the end it was no big deal and I calmed down and all went well. Second service was better (although we had a broken string that forced me to improvise amazing grace for the offertory, but that is another story).
My lessons for the day……..
1. No matter how much I try I can’t change God’s plan and what he wanted to happen did.
2. I haven’t arrived yet, I’ve got a long way to go
3. We can usually see train wrecks coming and often they can be avoided through preparation and troubleshooting.
So how was your day?



Two days ago I forgot Brandon’s birthday. That is one of the birthdays I consider unforgettable. You know the family, inner circle, friends, type people. I let myself down. I feel like crap when I forget birthdays. Here is my thing I have to tell the world. I never forget birthdays. I usually am not aware of the date.
I always know that my mom’s birthday is November 3rd, but a couple years ago I didn’t call her on her birthday because I didn’t even know it was November until one day I realized it was November 6th. Not a good excuse but nonetheless that is how my brain works. So far this year I forgot Dan, Shannon, and Brandon’s birthdays. Sorry guys, I suck.


• HSM had our annual karaoke night tonight. That is what we do for our first night back from the holidays. The night can be a weird night so we want to have some hype and momentum.
• I tried to sing U Remind Me by Usher….Usher would have cried.
• I have to be at a soccer meeting tomorrow morning at 7am. It’s good to have something that makes me get up and be an adult every once in a while, other than Malachi.
• I have a personal mission to get everyone is HSM wearing scarves all the time indoors and not even knowing why….and it is working.
• In the coming weeks I am DJing a dance, speaking at some events, going to Kalahari, going to an ordination, thinking about trying to get to the CE National leadership summit, Teaching a youth ministry module, and celebrating Malachi’s 1st birthday. There is more, but it seems like a bunch of stuff outside of my own church.
• I have a beard right now. I don’t think it is too good, because it has some weird connection pieces and a shady mustache but oh well.
• Leading worship at church this Sunday. We are in a series called faith walk right now so we are opening the service with Walk the Line by Johnny Cash.
• My feet are so cold I want to cry. Better get to bed.

2009 GOALS

As promised here are my 1 year goals for 2009. I even included the goals for Mr. and Mrs. Artrip as a couple.

MARK-One Year


1. To have HSM display the 6 signs of a healthy ministry-specifically focusing on a proper understanding/excitement of Jesus Christ and clear communication/teaching/worship into the word.

2. Grow as a communicator.  Speak on a Sunday morning? Take outside speaking opportunities, prepare more for HSM speaking, read communication books, record and study my communication.

3. Numbers

125            Students

20            Student Leadership

75            Students on Missions trips

35        Youth Staff Members

20        First Time Decisions

10            Students being mentored

85            Students in small groups

30            Students attending Momentum

3            Students going into Full time ministry

8            Students going on Operation Barnabas

70            Students involved in weekly ministry

3. Lead worship once a month and change the worship culture of our church

4. Be involved in the big idea, planning, and creative process.  Use gifts in this area.

Increase speaking, leading, working outside of student ministry

5. Help my grace group grow and multiply to help develop other leaders and disciple more couples our age.

6. Read at least 12 books.

7. Take all my vacation and spiritual days away.

8. Take my church road-trip in May.


1. Re-brand with new look, increase networking online

2. Increase speaking engagements and consulting opportunities.


1. Work out four times a week running at least 4 miles at a pace of 8 minutes or less, lifting weights for tone and weigh 190

2. Start DJ business to have fun, make money and make contacts around town.

3. Write, Record, and Release (have a release party) my EP.  Perform at least 5 shows.


1. Spend 30 minutes a day in the word and praying

2. Be investing in someone, doing accountability, and mentored by someone

3. Read the New Testament between now and end of school with HSM


Couple-One Year


1. Attend at least one ministry and/or marriage conference together.


1. Save $ and re-coop cushion for minivan and/or adoption.

2. Look into adoption and/or 2nd child?.

3. Travel to Nashville, Atlanta, and/or North Carolina. Take an anniversary getaway.

4. Re-do roof, Kitchen, Landscaping, buy kitchen table.

5. Join Couples soccer league or coach-someway to be in community

6. Maintain an open door policy for constant entertaining of friends and church folk


1. Be doing devotions and/or praying together 5 days a week

2. Lead a Grace group that multiplies.