Archive for the 'Uncategorized' Category

26
Sep
08

Moving to Our New Home

We’re heading to our new home! The Amalgamblog is moving back to its original home on the Concoxions website. The new Amalgamblog is at www.concoxions.com/blog. The new site contains all the old articles and comments from this blog in a new more user friendly site. Keep checking back at our new home each day for more articles, pictures, videos, and other miscellany.

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12
May
08

Connected

One of the things that I tell the students to whom I have had the privilege of ministering to over the years is, “I will always be your youth pastor.” What I am trying to get across to them is that I want to always be available to them when they need me, and that just because they have graduated doesn’t meant that our time together is over. In the twenty plus years that I have been doing what God has called me to do their have been many former students who have taken this very seriously, and I am very thankful for that. One of the things I have noticed recently is how much more connected I am able to be with these former students. Through the wonders of technology I am now able to stay in touch with them in ways which are far easier than past means of communication. With the advent of things like facebook and myspace along with email and text messaging I have so many more tools now at my disposal to enhance communication.

One day last week I was able to have an online conversation with a young man from the first church I ever served at in a full time capacity. I was checking my facebook page when the little chat window popped up with a message from him. I think the last time I saw him in person was when he has in either 5th or 6th grade. In our conversation he told me about how he had just graduated from college, gotten engaged, and was getting ready to head to seminary in the fall. Wow, he has a lot going on, but it meant a lot that he took the time to stop by and fill me in on what was happening in his life. That same evening saw me involved in an online counseling session with another one of my former youth who is struggling with a lot of issues right now that a girl her age should not be forced to deal with, but it was a blessing to be able to be there for her and allow God to minister to her through me, even if I was may miles away from her.

I could go on with stories like this, but the point is that we live in an age where we are blessed with resources that make ministry easier on so many levels, but we have to understand that it still boils down to relationships. In ministry we are only as strong as the relationship we have with God and the relationship we have with those we minister to. The health of the relationship with the Father affects the effectiveness we have in our ministry to others. While my ability to connect with former students has changed drastically over the past few years, the ease of connecting with the Father has remained the same. The sad part is that I feel like I forget that fact from time to time. When he said “I will never leave you or forsake you” he wasn’t just giving us a saying that would sound good in a greeting card. He was giving us a promise about his abiding presence in our lives as believers. I am so thankful that I serve a God who is “Emmanuel,” God with us.

28
Apr
08

Stillness

vermont sceneHave you ever stopped and listen to how much noise there is around you? When you do this you will be amazed at the background noise that fills our lives and so easily distracts us. This past summer, while on a mission trip to Vermont, I had the privilege of spending a night in one of the most naturally beautiful places I have ever been. The spot was located on a mountain in a rather isolated part of the state. The top of the mountain had a small cabin and from the front porch you could see Mt. Washington off to the east, still covered with snow. To the north you could see all the way into Canada. The whole placed look so much like a scene out of “The Sound of Music” that I fully expected Julie Andrews to come dancing over the ridge, singing at the top of her lungs. Prior to our Bible study that evening I took some time to go sit on this big rock that was a little ways away from the cabin. The sun was setting. There was a certain coolness in the breeze. The scent of pines and wildflowers filled the air, and it was very peaceful. As I lay back on the rock and prayed I began to realize that for one of the few times in my life I could not hear any man made sound. In that moment God brought Psalm 46:10 to my mind. Be still and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” God spoke to me in the stillness.

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The Amalgam is a collective of various writers, photographers, artists, and random people in general. This weblog is a collection of their thoughts on faith, life, the arts, sports, and basically anything else. The views of the writers in the Amalgam do not necessarily represent the views of Concoxions Creative Ministries. But where we disagree with them, we still love them.