Friday, September 21, 2012

a church?

da Moose's Lodge: A simple church, a "house" church, where travelers on the Journey gather to share their lives and adventures as they follow Jesus. Seeking to share God's love, grace and mercy with others in the world, and impart the Hope we have come to know. Where we disciple one another, and live sacrificial lives in obedience to Christ's  commandments (Matthew 22:36-40) and commission (Matthew 28:18-20). Holding to widely accepted statements of faith in the Christian tradition, but keeping the attitude, "unity in essentials, charity in nonessentials." Practicing the disciplines of our faith as monastics, with our "rule" being "vulnerability and availability drenched in Christ's Sermon on the Mount." (Matthew 5-7) Holy Scripture our text, Christ our teacher, the Holy Spirit our guide, in the love, grace and mercy of the Father. Pat & Patti - pastors providing soul care & facilitation as God leads.  Resources: - Library of devotional and study materials  - Spiritual Direction - Healing prayer focused on the heart - Mentoring - Couples, family & relational pastoral care - no building, no budget, no programs - our lives as offering, your tithes as & where God leads -  If this sounds like a "church" you may be interested in, contact us at or 916-448-8421.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Where is the church headed today in the west?

How will/can it become His Church, His Body again? For several years now, I have been trying to understand what and/or how Jesus’ wants us to be His Church, His Body, in our western world? It seems that the global Christian community is doing a better job of this, and maybe it’s living in desperate circumstances that prompt it? It’s been clear, at least to me, that denominations and traditional church models are failing to live out Christ’s command and commission, especially in Europe and the United States. We (Patti and I) have found semblances of what looks more like Jesus’ church in the various parachurch ministries we’ve encountered and been part of over the last two decades; Young Life, YWAM, etc. In addition, grass roots efforts to bring about collaboration between different churches in our community seem headed in the right direction? However, I sense that in order to see real change, a Kairos paradigm shift must happen? Others have expressed this more succinctly than I can, and below are links to “movements”, people and articles that articulate what Patti and I have been “hearing” in our own hearts, especially over the last three years. Simple Church - some links, etc.\ People: Roger Thoman, Frank Viola, Wolfgang Simson, Neil Cole & others. Articles: other links:

"Hell Weeks" -

Back in my football playing days, we had a period of two weeks where we practiced three times a day! Always in hot August, of course, hence, "Hell Weeks". The last two weeks have been like that for our family, especially our daughter's "team". It began with the excitement of Gabriella Skye's birth, but quickly became "hell on earth"; NICU with infection, postpartum issues, and finally last night a visit to ER for Karly with initial diagnosis if "pulmonary embolism", (life threatening). Through it all, Patti and I have leaned heavily on God and the prayers of faithful friends & family. And, we have encouraged Karly & Phil to do likewise. We believe wholeheartedly that God hears and answers our prayers, even if not in our desired way and time. Fortunately, for us all, God not only has heard, but also given us the desires of our hearts in this time of trial. Gabby's infection disappeared relatively quickly, even before a final diagnosis, and she came home earlier than doctors expected. Gabby is now thriving amidst the love of her family. Karly recognized the symptoms of depression and is getting treatment which we fully expect will return her to normal (normal for our family anyway). ;-) Last night was the third (they do always seem to come that way, huh?), chapter for our hell weeks. Karly was experiencing chest pain, so off with Phil to ER while Bapa & Nana stayed with two week old Gabby and her "big" brother. Initial diagnosis; pulmonary emboli. They finally got home about 3AM, but the final CAT scan angiogram failed to find or confirm an embolism?! (Not unlike my own kidney stone episode, where I fully believe it dissolved through Patti's prayers and God's divine intervention.) I am choosing to believe that God intervened in all three cases; hearing the prayers of faithful ("only say Your word Lord . . . ") for healing. (As I said earlier, not always in our way or time, but in this case, YES!) If that were the full story, I would gladly end here, but I know there's always more we don't see, and also more trials to come in this life. Choosing to seek and find God, Him in the midst, is our hope and strength, our comfort and peace. Reminds me of those life-giving books by Phillip Yancey; "Where Is God, Disappointment With God, and Amazed By Grace". epilogue: The old "Moose" has been "in the doghouse" more than once during this time, sadly, par for the course in this incorrigible "work in progress" :-(. I have had to "learn the hard way" about jestful wisecracks that can hurt, from both my wife and brethren at my church. I guess I could feign stress or stupidity and probably be right, but I think God wants and expects more?! I'll end with encouragement to always seek God and expect Him to reveal Himself to you personally, remembering too that "He disciplines those He loves." Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner. P.S. Thanks for those prayers! }:-

Monday, September 3, 2012

This is church . . .