Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Rewinding the Orchard

Well as I figure out what I want to do the Orchard Rewinds, I wanted to keep you all up to date on what's been happening on the Arts side at the Orchard the last several weeks.

We've been in a series called Rockin' The Orchard 2, where we take 6 weeks to journey through 6 decades of rock 'n' roll. Each song is the catalyst for the message each of those weeks and is chosen by the speaker. This has been a great opportunity to bring in other speakers to give Scott (our lead pastor) a break.

Here are the setlists from the last few weeks.

07.15.07 Setlist - Rockin' The Orchard (70's)
Medley - "Sweet Home Alabama" (Lynard Skynard),
"China Grove" (Doobie Brothers), and
"Taking Care of Business" (Bachman-Turner Overdrive)... Ken sang this one.
Tell The World - Hillsong United
Everyday - Lincoln Brewster
I will Survive - Gloria Gaynor (Joni sang this one and rocked the house)
Once Again - Matt Redman

07.22.07 Setlist - Rockin' The Orchard (80's)
Medley - "For Those About To Rock" (ACDC),
"Jump" (Van Halen),
"One Way To Rock" (Sammy Hagar),
"We Will Rock You" (Queen), and
"I Love Rock 'n' Roll" (Joan Jett and the Black Hearts)
Everybody Praise The Lord - Lincoln Brewster
Awesome Is The Lord Most High - Chris Tomlin
Pride (In The Name Of Love) - U2
Everlasting God - Lincoln Brewster

Please understand, this series is a fun summer series we have done for two summers now and people are really inviting their friends to be a part of it. People actually come early to hear what the walk-in medley is going to be each week because they know their friends will know the music. It totally brings down defenses and people are responding to the messages in a very positive way.

I actually have a rewind filmed this week with my family while we were away the first part of this week, so stay tuned!


Saturday, July 28, 2007

I Want My Two Dollars

One of my most favorite movies of all time is the movie Better Off Dead, starring John Cusak when he was basically a kid. I can't really explain it except that it takes me back to when I first saw the movie.

If you've never seen this movie, you're totally missing out on the 80's music and movie sequences. It's hilarious! Anyway, I digress...

Here's the premise for those who haven't seen it:

Lane Meyer (Cusak) is obsessed with his girlfriend Beth and is crushed when she falls for the new captain of the ski team, Roy. After several failed suicide attempts, narrow escapes from the relentless paper boy, and nearly unbearable dinners at home with his crazy family, Lane finds a new love in French exchange student Monique Junot. Meanwhile, he must beat Roy on the slopes to regain his honor.
The idea is that Lane thinks he would be better off dead than to live without his now ex-girlfriend, when in reality he learns the opposite is true. I was watching this movie again the other night for the millionth time and noticed something key that Monique confronts Lane with... his failures stem from his attitude and his view of himself. "I can't" is his middle name.

One of the things my wife and I have always tried to instill in our kids is "if you say you can't, you won't be able to". If you tell yourself that you can't do something you've already set yourself up to fail - you've already determined the outcome before you've even tried. There may very well be things that are beyond your capabilities, at least for the moment. But our words can be very powerful, even to ourselves and can affect our attitude and outlook.

Just take can't out of your vocabulary for a month and see what happens. What could you accomplish? What have you been called to do that you haven't even attempted because of that word?

Oh, and "I want my two-dollars!"
(See the movie and you'll know what this means).


Friday, July 27, 2007

Volunteers, Baseball and Fireworks

Tonight my wife and I were joined by The Orchard staff and more than 100 volunteers at the Kane County Cougars stadium. We enjoyed great food, a great game (the Cougars won of course), and great fellowship!

We have got to have the coolest volunteers around! Our volunteers are friendly, faithful and just down-right fun to be around! What was really cool is that there were many of them that I see every week but never get to spend time talking to because we're all busy doing what we're called to do on the weekends. We have a diverse group of people from all different backgrounds and it was great to hear some of their stories tonight.

We laughed a lot. We ate a lot. Then we wrapped up the night with an excellent display of fireworks right over our heads in center field - it was fantastic!

To all of you Orchard volunteers - thank you! The Orchard would not be effective at leading people into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ without all of you doing what you do every week! Talking with you I can hear how God is moving and doing great things in your lives and in the lives of those you invite to be a part of the Orchard community.

We love you and appreciate you - our faithful volunteers!

Thursday, July 26, 2007


How I lead today will not be effective tomorrow.

Powerful statement.
If this is true,
how do I prepare today
to be an effective leader tomorrow?


Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Guys vs Girls: Box Score

The games this weekend... Skipbo and Euchre. I have maintained the existing scores (obviously added the new wins) but please the previous post for the real score ;)

Guys - 7
Girls - 4

Who else plays cards out there? What's your game?
Come on - I know there are some competitive bloggers out there!


Tuesday, July 24, 2007

From 6 to 4

We sat tonight at our small kitchen table to eat dinner together - just my wife and my boys.

I waited through check-in and security lines yesterday and watched my girls fly off to Arizona. They will be visiting my brother and sister-in-law and Kristen's Dad and Mom. I know they will have a good time. They left Chicago and arrived safely in Phoenix.

I have to say I was a little sad watching the wheels of the plane leave the ground. They will be gone for 17 days, which I think is way too long, but I didn't buy the tickets.

So it's my boys, my wife and I at home. We are having fun just the four of us but it is definitely different. There is not as much arguing. Not as much trash and debris. Not as much noise, which is odd because my boys are usually the cause of these things :) I think it's because the dynamic of our group has been altered.

Anyway, I miss my little girls who are not so little anymore, yet I look forward to the one-on-one time with my boys. At least we don't have to deal with the 103 degrees and 70% humidity!


Friday, July 13, 2007

Tagged for iTunes Party Shuffle

A blog friend of mine over at realyouthoughts has tagged me... so I'm posting the first 10 songs that show up in a party shuffle on my iTunes. So, Tyler, here they are:

Broadcast - Steve Fee
Frontline - Pillar
Chasing Cars - Snow Patrol
Tonight - Jeremy Camp
Try again - Keane
Bad Day - Daniel Powter
Crossfire - Stevie Ray Vaughan
Mind Storm - Joe Satriani
From God Above - Hillsong United
Not Falling Apart - Maroon 5
Who knew? Some of these I haven't listened to in a while. Zach, Kyle, Doug, and Larry - tag, your it! List 'em out gentlemen... your top 10 songs that show up in your iTunes party shuffle.


Thursday, July 12, 2007

Guys vs Girls: Box Score

Almost forgot to add to the list the latest card game wins.

Guys - 6 **
Girls - 3 ***

** There is also some wins added by my partner while he was on vacation bringing the guys real total to 9.
*** Apparently, there was some sort of agreement to keep the above card game win count in the running total until the guys racked up the wins... the girls only won one additional while our partners were away bringing their total to 4.

Which do we keep :))


Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Orchard Rewind 16

Hard to believe - three posts in one day :)

Here's the latest Orchard Rewind. Not sure what to do with these anymore and not sure they are necessarily being of help to anyone out there.

Suggestions? What would you like to see that would be of help to you (or just entertaining, since that's why I'm really here :)?

This weeks rewind might be a bit hard to hear but it was a chance to do the recap with my team (or part of it) from this last weekend. I lead with a fantastic group of people and quite frankly, none of what happens on the weekend at The Orchard could happen without them. They are faithful. There are no egos on this team, which is refreshing. They are all extremely talented people who want to be used to lead others into the presence of God.

So, thanks team! From the music to multimedia, from audio to video you all rock my face off!

Anyway, here's the rewind.

Set Pics for RTO2

Here's a couple of pics of the set we have up for our summer series Rockin' The Orchard 2.

What kind of cool set stuff are you all doing where you lead?


Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Two B-days and a Bunch of Craziness

Feels like I've been on a blogging hiatus lately. Lots to write about but too much going on to actually do it. For a summer month, July has started out full throttle! We usually have the summer slow down where we kind of 'coast' - not a lot of school work for the kids at home, not a ton of things to do (except yard work), and usually just maintaining the creative level at the church. We have been having a blast but haven't really slowed down.

I have two kids in sports (Seth in coach-pitch baseball and Kylee in Softball). They have been doing great and it's part of our homeschool PE program. We didn't realize when we signed them up that there would be a gazillion games for both of them every week, or that they would be 15-20 miles from our house! You live and learn I guess.

Faith went to camp for a week.
The girls are going to AZ for 17 days.
Josh and Kylee both just celebrated birthdays within a day of each other (Kristen had great posts for each of them).
Seth is losing or pulling his teeth for cash :)
Kristen is losing her teeth for cash too (the money just goes to the dentist :)

We've been running a new series at The Orchard and preparing for several upcoming events. The new series is called Rockin' The Orchard 2 and you can find details in an earlier post (and on our website). We are preparing for our BBQ and Baptism coming up in August. We have more than 80 people signed up to be baptized so far!! I'm trying to find a Blues/Rock band to play that evening as well so that we can add a third 'B' to the BBQ and Baptism.

We have been running Arts team auditions, building sets, learning new tunes, and doing some team coaching as well. I am deciphering through proposals for our auditorium upgrades so that we can get them in soon and have been dealing with consultants. We are getting ready for the fall and the launch of our third weekend service (Saturday nights)... I've actually even been exercising if you can believe that! Lots of fun, but busy.

So that's kind of the latest in a post! It is awesome to see the excitement my family has at what God is doing within our church family and our own.

How's your summer been so far?


Thursday, July 05, 2007

Fantastic Fourth

My wife already posted about our great day together as a family.
We had a lot of fun together.

I have a wonderful family - more than I could have asked our imagined. My hope is that July 4th, 2007 will be as great of a memory for my kids as it was for me.

I concur with my wife that it was one of the best fireworks displays I've ever seen. It can't get much better than sitting in the middle of a well kept golf course on a blanket with the fireworks exploding right in front of you and even right above you.

I tried to convince my kids that those who were executing the pyrotechnics were creative artists - they choose which part of the sky (canvas) to explode the fireworks, which colors and when. They also work with sound, anticipation, effects and use a combination of those things to draw the participant into what is happening.

I felt a connection for sure as a creative arts guy.
I can't say my kids did.
Hopefully they can block that part of the memory when they recall our time together :)

How was your Independence celebration?


Van Halen Reunited

All you rockers out there knew it was going to happen sooner or later... Van Halen looks like they will be going back on tour this fall (after Eddie gets out of rehab) with their original frontman David Lee Roth. You can check out the article on Billboard here.

According to the article, it appears as though Michael Anthony won't be on bass - Eddie's son, Wolfgang, will be playing bass for the tour. That would actually be a pretty cool thing - playing on stage with your dad.

Anyway, if you're a guitarist you care. If you aren't, well enjoy the trivia anyway. :)

Any of you ever see these guys live in concert? When my wife was pregnant with our first, we caught a show with Hagar as the lead and it was awesome. Never saw them with Roth. What's your story?


Sunday, July 01, 2007

Rockin' Kick Off

I'm sitting back in our tech booth here at the Orchard as we start our first week of Rockin' The Orchard. There has been a big buzz happening about this series among our people here! The stage is set, the music is ready, the message is ready, the videos are ready...

Some technical issues this morning that we never experience - lights going out on the stage during the message (unscripted), AC unit going on the fritz (making a large hum noise and keeping the auditorium a little warmer than normal), interference on one of our wireless mics, a couple musical problems... things seemed to have started off a little rough.

Yet at the same time, we had a great group of people come out for the start of this series! The message still rang clear and the energy and excitement of a church body singing "Here is our King" was still proclaimed. The videos were still powerful and the atmosphere was engaging.

Sometimes we plan and prepare and things still don't go according to plan. As leaders we strive hard to listen to God and follow how his Spirit directs us - I believe the Spirit works in our planning as well as in our services. Yet I forget that the enemy doesn't want church to happen. I take for granted that just because we are gathered together in a building that we are safe from attacks. A good reminder to me today that my focus has to be unwavering on what God is calling us to do here at The Orchard. No matter what distractions, no matter how loud or disruptive, we cannot back down.

If you are a pastor, leader, or even a parent - you cannot back down from what God is calling you to do. Lives are at stake on an eternal level. I encourage you to step out and step boldly.

More on the weekend coming soon.