April 27, 2011

#Exponential 2nd hand

Posted in more disciples at 11:35 PM by alexlozada

I’m NOT at Exponential (church planter conference) this year, but some of my MCC teammates are, including  Rob Kastens – check this post from his new blog. I didn’t see live-stream of the main sessions on the Exponential website as they have in past years, but the Twitter feed (hashtag #Exponential) provides enough real-time quotes & impressions for someone like me who prefers reading text to listening live – especially since my hearing aids sometimes can’t handle the booming amplification at stadium events 🙂 For example, teammate Betsy Magness‘ tweet, “it’s a leaders job to help people see themselves as God intended them to be. @AlanHirsch” – insightful reminder to small group leaders that we do more than teach content or coordinate social activities!

I realize my post yesterday about Orange Conference might have confused people – I’m not there in Atlanta, nor Orlando for Exponential, or even Johnson City 🙂 This is an at-home week for me, though Heather is traveling to Ohio for an extended weekend w/ her parents, helping them get their house ready for sale so they can move to Maryland this summer! I confess that I’m much more looking forward to dad-daughters time the next few days than I traveling, even to events as energizing as Exponential or  Orange 🙂

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April 26, 2011

Old School + Orange

Posted in children’s, personal at 11:09 PM by alexlozada

Some MCC teammates are at the cutting-edge Orange Conference (“combining the critical influences of the light of the church (yellow) and the love of the family (red) the Orange Strategy shows a generation who God is more effectively than either could alone”). MCC talked about the “Think Orange” partnership between parents & church in last year’s “Children At Play” message from the “Signs of Life” series.

My friends will come back w/ some exciting, innovative, cutting-edge programming, but my family recently experienced an example of “orange” (church=yellow + parents=red) that was “old school” – traditional but still meaningful. Children from MCC’s Mt 54 (“Mount Fifty-Four”), guided by MCC volunteers (many of them parents, plus some servant-hearted singles) presented an old-fashioned, costumed Easter drama  at Lorien Bel Air Senior Health Center a few Sundays ago. The costumes have been part of MCC Children’s Ministry for decades, and the lines spoken by the 4th-5th graders are much older than that, but hearing “Hosanna, blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord” from one special 5th grader made the story new + cutting edge + orange-y for me 🙂

April 25, 2011

A Word of Finality 24Apr resources

Posted in children’s, MCC resources, personal at 7:43 PM by alexlozada

MCC celebrated a blessed Easter weekend with hundreds of volunteers helping 8190 attenders worship at 10 services on 2 campuses.  Ben Cachiaras concluded the “Famous Last Words” series with “It Is Finished – A Word of Finality” (Audio / video). With all the special events (including Christ in the Passover presented by Jews for Jesus on Good Friday evening) I didn’t finish the study guide in time for printing. I jotted down message notes during the Saturday 6:45 service, as I sat with my family.

For most of the other services at the Mountain Rd campus this weekend, I volunteered in Children’s Ministry. On Sunday, an Easter family tradition came full circle when one of my daughters was the craft leader for 1st-3rd graders, and I was her assistant-helper. She did a great job demonstrating the project to the kids, and telling me what materials we needed to restock the room between each new round of classes 🙂

This is Hillsong United’s original version of “Take Heart.” For Easter services, MCC worship teams sang this as thousands of red “tetelestai” (“Finished!”) cards were brought to the foot of the cross.

April 17, 2011

A Word of Humanity resources 17Apr

Posted in MCC resources at 11:19 PM by alexlozada

Ben Cachiaras spoke about “I thirst”, as MCC continued reflecting on Jesus’ “Famous Last Words” at the cross. I was glad to worship w/ MCC Bel Air friends, but as I drove arrived back at the Mountain Rd campus, I noticed choir folks shuttling to their cars, and realized I had missed all 3 Mountain Rd services at which they sang 😦  I wrote the study guide before listening to the weekend messages, so this version might need the notes I jotted while listening more than some other weeks, if you want to tightly connect your small group discussion time w/ the weekend message.

This is Hillsong Church’s version of “For All You’ve Done”, though it doesn’t quite make up for missing MCC’s friends singing live 🙂

April 10, 2011

A Word of Darkness resources 10Apr

Posted in MCC resources at 8:26 AM by alexlozada

Luke Erickson continued MCC’s “Famous Last Words” series by answering the question, “Does Jesus have anything to say about my pain?” Audio + video links (posted when available). For the first time since the “According to Jim” series, I finished the study guide in time for it to be printed for both Bel Air campus and the Saturday PM service 🙂 I took notes during the Sat PM service from backstage, making sure to shut down my laptop during a certain part of the service to avoid distracting from the effect of sudden darkness in the room…

April 4, 2011

Team means together

Posted in culture, school at 11:59 PM by alexlozada

The last few months, I’ve been teamed with a Mountain Christian School student Mark P in MCS’s “Pass the Baton” mentoring program. For those who know me, no surprise that we’ve worked on projects that combine sports stories and  technology as discipleship tools 🙂 Our latest effort is the powerpoint “Play Together or …”

We started the project before the just ended NCAA “March Madness” Men’s Div I basketball tournament. Neither Mark nor I had much success with our brackets 😉 but all along, we discussed the importance of working together, not trying for individual glory. The championship game wasn’t “classic” but when the star of the winning team didn’t play well, the team together played defense and just enough offense to win.

“Our Pass the Baton” student-pastor mentoring team is ending in a few weeks 😦 but I’m grateful for his help in projects like researching International Disaster Emergency Services and Monvee.com, and picking new resources for MCC’s adult small groups.

April 3, 2011

A Word of Love – resources 3Apr

Posted in MCC resources at 2:32 PM by alexlozada

Ben Cachiaras continued the Famous Last Words series by talking about “Jesus’ amazing, compassionate words from cross to his mother call us to look past our own pain and hurt to see and care about others.” (audio / video) I printed the small group study guide in time for pickup at last night’s Saturday evening service – progress on my recent tardiness 🙂 – but didn’t get copies to MCC’s Bel Air campus (apologies to the folks there who will need to download & print their own copies).  I took notes last night and during this morning’s 8:08 service, and then helped in the infant nursery during the 9:49. Time with the little ones reminded me about Ben’s words about Mary’s thoughts turning back to Jesus’ infancy and the haunting prophecy, “a sword will pierce your own soul, too.”

April 2, 2011

Going Beyond in NYC – Metro Chr Convention 2011

Posted in better disciples, NACC, NYC, tech at 11:57 PM by alexlozada

I presented 2 workshops last Saturday at an annual Saturday gathering of Restoration Movement Christians in the NYC region. My family & I have been participating in the Metro for years, way back to its early days when we would make the long drive from Ohio to participate. My two topics this year grew from the Convention theme of “Going Beyond in NYC” – itself an adaption from last year‘s  North American Chr Convention. You can download notes from the “Going Beyond in Discipleship” session (answer key at bottom of sheet). The “Going Beyond in Technology” was deliberately more free form, because I guessed that the participants would come w/ different levels of tech interest for themselves and their congregations. The discussion focused on:

  • using YouVersion (my specific user account including my notes) for an online Bible resource, including reading plans;
  • Twitter to communicate by texting, especially for congregations whose members used text more than email or web;
  • blogs for posting lessons and news 🙂

As readers of this blog can guess, we barely scratched the surface of using tech for ministry: databases, Facebook, security, etc. – but if anyone has thoughts, feel free comment on this post 🙂