Wednesday, November 09, 2011

A Radical change...

So, every year for almost a DECADE, we've been doing a WINTER RETREAT the first weekend of each year with our PCC young adults. It's always been a great time being together, sitting around by the fire, singing, praying, and of course snowboarding. Watch videos of some of the past years here:





But after reading RADICAL by David Platt, and really wrestling with what it means to FOLLOW JESUS this season, I sensed God leading our ministry to make a radical decision.  Instead of going to the mountains to shred some snow this season, we'll be walking the streets, praying, showing grace and preparing the way for God's kingdom in one of of the most needy places in our Bay Area: The Tenderloin of SAN FRANCISCO. (It was chapter 3,  5 & 6 of Radical specifically that challenged me).

JANUARY 6-8 2012 come SERVE...come FOLLOW JESUS..and expand God's kingdom by praying, showing grace, and discipling the Tenderloin w/a great ministry called SF City Impact.

I want to be the Church. I want to disciple and multiply community. I want to see God's power. I want to love the poor and sacrifice my time and resources for the glory of God. It was evident that our young adults were also craving this, too! So, I thought this season we could do without a trip focused on us having fun in the comfort of our traditional winter cabins with fireplaces, to join a radical movement, a church seeking to radically love the poor.

THE MOST amazing part is our friend AUTUMN BUZZELL, currently serving in Ghana will be back in California for the same weekend with her mission leaders John and Stacy to join us and spend time sharing stories and preparing us for our MAY 2012 mission to CITY OF REFUGE, serving and loving on African orphans and kids who've been rescued from being trafficked into the fishing industry. How radical is that???  Ghana and the Tenderloin. Sharing stories with people in San Francisco being freed from addiction and violence with what God is doing and how he is rescuing and transforming people across the world in Africa from slavery to freedom.

The schedule will be something like:
Team time, Worship gatherings, sharing stories with fellow SF City Impact friends,
City of Refuge (John, Stacy, Autumn) teach us what God is doing in Ghana, music, etc.
Work in the Rescue Mission, Volunteer Center, Kitchen, Thrift Store or  Construction  and
Street Ministry (prayer walking, door to door showing grace: meeting immediate physical needs, laying hands on people for healing, etc).

MORE INFO on this serving retreat AFTER THE FALL RETREAT (Nov 18-20 at Mt. Hermon).

Tuesday, September 06, 2011


Someone from our church family took a picture of me while I was leading one of our PCC worship gatherings Sunday. It's rare that I'm in a tie but here's some proof. Our 9am gatherings are more traditional and so music and dress a more traditional expression. (I love how my hands in are in the "prayer position," it almost looks staged).
I spoke through Colossians 3 emphasizing verse 23 as part of our summer RENEW focus.
To listen go to

Whatever you do, work at it as though you were working for the Lord and not for human masters.

I was renewed in huge ways this summer through the book of Colossians. God has shown me how to renew my mind to who I am and to who he is! We have the fullness of Christ (2:10) and I want to live this every day, worshiping him in everything I do. We don't have to ask God to give us fullness-we have it already by faith-those of us in Christ. Worship isn't just singing, Church isn't just Sundays in a building. Worship is our life, and the Church is God's people on a radical mission to bless and love the world to see God's kingdom expand! (For more on my church thoughts see: 

Don't "go to" Church part 2

my VLOG on the Church

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Casting Call

One of my passions is filmmaking. I love being sets creating stories and seeing art come to life. But I also love being on sets because of all the conversations I get to have with people about God! It is quite a mission field for me!

One of my fave shows is having a contest so I entered!!

It's easy to vote, you just login w/ Facebook or Twitter, or your email! And you can vote very day, once daily, until September 9th.
Vote here:
1-Log-in (Top Right of page using FB, your email, twitter)

2-Create profile (takes 1 min! Don't be alarmed if you're confused! You'll figure it out!).

3-Vote-by pressing RED VOTE TAB under my PIC (SEE # of votes CHANGE & it says "Thanks for Voting.")
YOU DON'T HAVE TO "LIKE" the page, Just "liking" the page doesn't count as a vote.

4-Vote every day around the same time. They clock it
every 24 hours thru your computer. CONTEST ENDS 9/9. It's all about the # of votes. Top 10 highest men & top highest women are entered in Semi-finals.

5-You can invite others to join in on the event, too!

Thanks so much for the shameless self-promotion!
9th place for the men votes as of Sunday 8/28

HUGE THANKS to my good friend John Meyer who took the photo for me!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Much Ado about SOMETHING Amazing!

I tried to turn it down a couple times. My life always seems so full as it is. I shuttered at how much work it would involve volunteering with twelve kids attempting to perform Shakespeare (in the original language), especially twelve kids with English as a second language. And as far as I knew none had ever acted in any capacity before. It seemed quite challenging.  But I'm extremely glad God didn't allow me to miss this opportunity. About six weeks ago, because of the encouragement of a passionate parent/neighbor of mine (Emily Devitis),  I sat down with this local committed teacher, Sarah Coyle, who explained her big dream: to give her kids an opportunity to do something they'd never done before (and might not ever get a chance to do). Due to many school district cuts, public schools have no room for extras, let alone the arts. My heart melted and I agreed to direct this group of 4th and 5th grade students in scenes from Shakespeare's "Much Ado About Nothing."

I first only agreed to one hour a week. The realized it needed to be two, then three hours, and on some weeks four hours with the last week being as much time as I could! And with a lot of prayer we pulled off two performances on Friday and I must say, they nailed it! I was so proud of them. (We have one show left next week. WED JUNE 1, 6-6:30PM ROOSEVELT ELEMENTARY SCHOOL). Needless to say I grew in love with them (even when they forget their lines and add lib things about Chuck E.  Cheese and Red Lobster. Yes it happened, and it was one of the funniest moments in the performance).

My mother-in-law painted facial hair for the guys. It added so much and gave them a boost of character.

The backdrop/set was designed and constructed in a great community collaboration (I love this word).
It all started from Emily Devitis (my neighbor) who connected me to the school. Then  she and Jen Alexander (artist extraordinaire) designed/painted the set. It's beautiful.

5th grade Victoria, in blue below, plays Beatrice. She will also get a scholarship to attend Broadway By the Bay's Youth Theatre Conservatory! There was even an article written about her and our production on Read it here.

The kids had never experienced wearing a microphone before. Having amplification added so much to the performance.

 My long time friend, Erica Wyman (actor and director as well, below in the pink), with her Broadway by the Bay connections hooked me with the Boys and Girls' club two years ago. And now she agreed to help partner in this little production. She arranged a great sound system and invited Broadway by The Bay's Development Director Tyler Bennet and Executive Director Jim Gardia, to watch the show. They greeted the kids afterward and just gushed all over them which made the kids feel so amazing! We are so thankful to Broadway by the Bay for covering our costumes, as well! They were a perfect fit for the show!

Afterward I teared up talking w/ the Principal and the BBB staff. God is doing something amazing. I love how he intersects our gifts/passions with the kingdom. This was such a practical way for me to love on our city and bless the schools.

My favorite part was hearing the kids' reactions. They knew they had accomplished something beyond their abilities, they felt good about themselves, experienced teamwork, and they were already dreaming about a "Midsummer Night's Dream for next year"....We'll see about that..

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

A not-so subtle reminder of Grace

After I returned from lunch I found this note on my car.

"Nest time I we key your car Dummie | your welcome"

Really? I guess Parking one inch ON the line caused some one some grief in their day.

Or who knows maybe I  cut this person off or took the spot they wanted. I have no idea. But getting this note elicited emotions in me. (Enough to blog about it, obviously). Part of me laughed at some of the spelling mistakes and made some assumptions about the person that actually took the time to write the note (For which I'm sorry that my thoughts quickly ran to judgment). Then I was sad to think what it would take to cause a person to choose to use their energy in such a negative way. Then I was humbled. I had to stop thinking about myself as a victim and  think about the person on the other end of the situation. And so I prayed for hope in this person's day. I know my parking job was not responsible for "making" this person angry..perhaps they are feeling low because they are unemployed, going through a hard relationship. lonely, or maybe they have even hurt because other people have called them names. Or what if, this is  extreme, but he/she may be living  under emotional and/or physical abuse from others. Or it could be none of those things.

It could be as simple as this person just made a one time bad choice in the course of his/her day that hurt another person (me),  like I do a lot to other people. And this person needs grace..just like I do for the way I act..and the way I park. God..thank you for reminders like this. Either way, today I pray that this person, that myself, and that every reader of this story knows that we have a creator who loves us and who always gives us second chances when we cross the line--in any and every way. This creator, this savior, this God who loves us will never demean us, and never call us "dummie."

Friday, April 15, 2011

Time...Time to slow down.

I've not made much time to blog lately. Notice the difference: I said I didn't "make" time, not I haven't "had" time. I've had lots of time, but I've had to make the choice to use my time in different ways on many, many other things lately. I'd like to be blogging more, honestly, but I have to sacrifice the long postings for more short updates--as in 140 characters on Twitter or Facebook. It's a humbling realization but I should not be doing as much as I'd like to be doing (or think I'm capable of doing). I have a huge to-do list. And I don't say that for pity, I actually enjoy accomplishing a lot of things and usually take on more things **outside of my job description** because I want to and it feels great, I like to help others, and I feel satisfied in my accomplishments, etc...but I'm seeing that God is teaching me to be careful in all the freedom he's given me. Sometimes he lets us choose all the things we want to do and other times he's clear what he wants us to do and what he doesn't want us to do. Right now, I'm in a season where God is telling me to wait, put things off, let go, and that I have to say NO more often, schedule less, and not be a slave to technology. With that comes accomplishing less and the challenge to keep my worth and identity rooted in Jesus. My worth doesn't come from what I do, but from who God says I am. Ephesians chapters 1-3 declare this loud and clear.

It reminds me of this picture my mom sent me. Check out this car wreck.

The passenger and driver were OK, thankfully. Sometimes I think about my life and how fast I am prone to go...and I'm grateful for the ways God allows me to see the need to stop and just be. Sometimes this comes from times of pain that I have no control over, sometimes it's because I got exhausted taking on too many things, and other times it comes because my kids need me to be dad and run around the house with them.

I don't want to pass these moments by and not learn anything, As if to say, "Whew, that was a close call." Because sometimes it's a lot closer than we think and consequences to disobedience or wrong alignment of priorities way deeper and dangerous to our life that we know.  And we don't even realize what God is doing, saving us from, or how he is protecting us in the heavenly realms. Just how this driver and passenger from the the car wreck above must have felt when they took in what almost happened to them---take a look at the rest of the picture. This is crazy. This is real.

I realized God may be giving me a new word for the season. SLOW.
(but I also am connected to the word REMAIN).
John 15: 1-5
“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.

Thursday, January 27, 2011