• Last night was a good night at HSM.
  • We started a new series called forward motion and kicked it off with a great video teaching from XP3.
  • Bronson did 8-9 songs for an extended worship time and it was great. He is really hitting his stride as a worship leader.
  • I cut Brandon and Sean’s hair last night….I am a barber at heart.
  • I forgot till Lindsey told me last night, but I am turning 27 on Saturday. I always thought 27 was the perfect age because you would still be young and cool but not too old…we will see if I can prove that to be true.
  • Next week is the CE National leadership summit for youth workers. Should be fun to see some of my peoples and just have conversations over lunch.
  • I am in need of learning how to lead out ministry as it grows and changes. Lately I am very aware of my shortcomings and the systems I have in place.
  • While in Indiana I am going to be catching up with my good friends Jeremy and Ginger. So excited what God is doing through them in Goshen, IN.
  • We are also staying with Matt and Hope Neimier. Time for two redheads to pretend they are ghetto like old times.
  • Wednesday we will fly out for a week vacation to hang out with Rachel in Miami, FL. Anyone want to marry Rachel? I am still trying to find her a husband.  All applicants can contact me by email or phone.
  • My only plans for the week are to relax and not get sun burnt.
  • Ok and I want to have some shameless cute kid in the ocean picture sessions with Malachi.
  • I am also taking in a Miami Heat game courtesy of my friend Sam getting me free player tickets. I think Brandon is mad at me for cheating on the Cavs.
  • Welp, I gotta go get some work done so I can dig into a day of March Madness. I am in two brackets, one has been going since like 2003 and every year I get somewhere around 19th placeJ





Recently I twittered the thought wondering “Where is the line between empowering others but making sure you don’t throw them to the wolves if they are under equipped or under prepared?”

Not sure I have an answer just yet. Don’t know if I will but I have made mistakes already in ministry to let people up front too early and to hold them back too long. Maybe someday I will find the balance….Maybe?


My friend (who I won’t air out on this blog) once told me some great advice.  He said, “don’t ask people for their opinion unless you intend to listen to it.” It sounds harsh, but when you feel God has called you to lead people it just might apply.  Moses didn’t ask the people if they should keep the golden calf because he knew God had called them to more.  Another friend of mine loves to say “Where there is no Vision, people perish.”


Stating the obvious-the tension of leadership is toeing that line between shepherding and vision-casting.  Leading people where they wouldn’t go is different than tugging on a leash or letting them roam.

EDIT: Some awesome comments from some great friends and thinkers on this post.  I guess I scratched an itch with this post….Or maybe overstated one side and made myself look like a non-listening idiot:)

Just some quick thoughts I wrote one night that like any blog I am going to write will be quick, simple, and incomplete.




This past weekend I was asked to speak at the student ministry retreat for my friend Eric Miller at his church (Grace Community Church in Frederick, MD) at Camp Joy-El in Greencastle, PA.  Before I left for the weekend (as I shared previously on this blog) I found out the unfortunate news that a girl from our church had died. I was asked to perform the memorial service on Sunday so I asked Eric if I could not speak at the final session on Sunday.  This meant that I would have to drive through the night after I finished speaking on Saturday.  The following is a recap of the events of Saturday night and on into Sunday. This was quite a night….


I spoke 3 times on Sharing youth faith on Saturday and in the middle I ate lunch.  I didn’t eat dinner because I was starting to feel “funny”.

After I finished speaking I was hanging out for a few minutes and suddenly knew it was vomit time. I was sitting next to Eric Miller up front as he showed a video that he had made. I grabbed a trashcan and went out the side door. I threw up in it 5 times.

Having no flex in my schedule and with the car already packed, I had to get on the road so I grabbed a mini-bucket that I found next to some vending machines behind the cafeteria and hit the road at 9:39.  I didn’t feel great but there is some immediate adrenaline after throwing up and as you read on this was what helped me make the drive home.

I left the camp and drove for about 90 minutes I think stopping Somerset, PA because I was starting to feel awful. I tried to sleep in my car and drifted in and out of sleep hoping it had been hours only to see that 5 and 10 minutes had ticked by on the clock.

I awoke feel terrible just in time to throw up 5 more times in my trusty bucket. I went inside and cleaned up and changed into my pajama pants because everything is better when you are wearing flannel pants:)

I decided to hit the road and made it down the road about an hour before stopping again. I slept there for about an hour but eventually knew I had to go inside and visit the bathroom. Luckily I took my bucket because while inside I threw up 5 more times bringing my grand total up to 15.

I rode the adrenaline wave and took off driving for another hour before I stopped and slept for 90 minutes. I was hoping I was starting to feel better.

The best part of this night was that it was time for clocks to leap forward so somewhere in this whole night I “lost” an hour of sleep.

I woke up at like 5:50 which felt like 4:50 to me and took off for home on the final leg of my trip. I think I was 40 miles from the PA border but I may have hallucinated most of these memories.

I arrived in Columbus dizzy, queasy, and not a very good driver. I collapsed into my bed so tired I couldn’t fall asleep. I had told Kristin to let me sleep till noon because I had to be at the church at one.

The service went great and the gospel was shared and I lived to tell about it.

I will not soon forget that night and hope it built character?


This year at Catalyst Andy Stanley said that Good ideas don’t’ come from people over 45 years old (my paraphrase).  He said that older people do have positions and influence and need to champion the cause of great young minds and their ideas. 

While that is an exaggerated point, I think he wanted to get the word to an older audience that you have to be continuously learning from everything and everyone-including those younger, lower on the totem pole, and less experienced than you.

In that spirit I found this great article on highlighting how an “iconic band” like U2 still strives to learn from younger people like Kanye West and Jay-Z including video footage.

I am not just a young guy saying this to let off steam. While I am not leadership guru, I am constantly thinking how I can learn to minister to high school students by learning from other high school students. It is humbling but no one can know better than their peers.


Topic: Evangelism

The “Big” Idea: Why we MUST share our faith.

Attendance: 75 students, 15 adults

Student Involvement: Aubrey did the welcome for the first time so that was cool as she continues to step up and lead. Plus she has read hair.

Our band is getting so good it is scary. Bronson is doing a great job of leading a group of blossoming musicians. Scary to think about how awesome next year could get.

Worship Set: All Because of Jesus, O’ Happy Day, God of this City, Our God reigns, and Everything.

Everything is a Lifehouse song that really builds to the end and our group responded. I saw some first time hands in the air:)

Fun Stuff: We didn’t do a game tonight, Just decided to switch it up and started later giving more time to hang out and take in the food and atmosphere

Vickie Darrough and Kelly Coville continue to go above and beyond to make our place a home for everyone.  I will put some pics up next week to show what Vickie did.  Kelly made limbes (Urban Hope style) to celebrate the release of summer trip applicatons.

In place of the game, we did show a random youtube video

Lesson Review:

The lesson was heavy on scripture but I think it was still engaging.

We touched on II Kings 6-7, Matthew 28:19-20, Philimon 6-7, and Matthew 5:31.

Finally ending on this youtube video that has made the rounds on blogs of Teller (of Penn and Teller fame) telling that even though he doesn’t believe in God, heaven, or eternity he finds a Christian who does and won’t share their faith repulsive.



I try to avoid sports posts on here, but it should be noted that I am an NBA geek. I miss watching the NBA on NBC with my brother Danny.  I suppressed my inner NBA for a few years (19-23) but 10-year old Mark could not be held in any longer. 

I read everyday from videos to blogs. I even have some friends (Mike and Coty) who are just as nerdy as I am.  Anyway, I say all that to say one of my soapboxes when talking basketball is traveling. I don’t really rip NBA guys but the high school and college players (that I hold to a higher standard) who watch them.

Check out this article ESPN did today about traveling…if you care that is.