Monday, March 29, 2010

Changing Directions

Every new venture comes with risks. Launching Reveal as third worship service in January of last year brought with it new difficulties and different obstacles to overcome. No matter how well planned you are, there are always unforseen issues that arise once you begin.

With that in mind, we announced yesterday that we will be ending Reveal as a third worship service on May 2.

Let me give you a little backstory to the issue and then catch you up-to-date on where we're headed. Almost from the moment we began our pre-launch services in September 2008, the time of Reveal became an issue. Even back then, when we were finishing at 12:30 or 12:45 some Sundays, we realized that families with young children were going to be at a decided disadvantage should they choose to be a part of Reveal.

In fact, within a month of beginning the pre-launch services, one of our launch team families approached me about dropping out because of it. So when we launched in January, 2009, we weren't completely caught off guard when we weren't reaching a ton of families with young children. What did catch us off guard were the number of singles and college students who visited but told us that same thing - the time was an issue.

While the time was an issue, for the first 10-12 months, it didn't seem to hurt us tremendously. But slowly late last fall, we began to see a slow decline in attendance and participation. In the past few weeks, we began discussions about possibilities for Reveal. Steve, Will and I all had a tremendous desire to see Reveal succeed. We looked at changing times, changing places, changing days. We talked about taking a break for the summer and re-launching in the fall. Throughout the process, we prayed a lot about the future of Reveal and the people who had become a part of it. At the same time, as we looked at the time and energy that was going into planning and producing Reveal, we wanted to make sure that we were being good stewards both.

Our attendance in late February and early March had gotten to about 50 people each Sunday. While new people were coming each week, fewer were coming back long term. Finally, it was decided that we would end Reveal as it is currently constituted on May 2. The plan is to look for ways to incorporate more elements of Reveal in the 10:30am worship gathering as well as to explore bringing a Reveal-type service back in the Fall on a monthly basis.

As I talked to people yesterday about Reveal, most were saddened by the developments but happy to have been a part of the Reveal experiment. Almost all had a positive experience because of Reveal and the connections that were made through Reveal.

There is sadness as we grieve. That's ok. But let's not linger too long thinking about what might have been or what should have happened. Reveal is not the central point. Reaching people for Christ is. For some time, Reveal was a part of our journey. But the ultimate journey is the journey we take with Christ and there's no telling where that journey will take us.

Thanks for the prayers and the support over the past 20 months. I remember even before we knew that Reveal was coming, we just had Things changed quickly and will continue to do so.

Remember, we will still be in the Apex at 11:55am until May 2. We would love to see you drop in at least a few more times.

-- Peace, Jamie

Monday, March 8, 2010

Set List 03.07.10

Here is the music that we used for 03.07.10

[Opening Song]
D - So Good To Me - Evans/Jones

[Worship Set]
D - Our God Saves - Baloche/Brown
D - A Love Song - Stellar Kart
D - You Are My King (Amazing Love) - Billy Foote

We had a good day yesterday. about 60 people in REVEAL. We also had lunch after the service. It was a good time to sit and talk with some people. Great times!

Check out what other worship leaders are doing over at Sunday Setlists.

Dream Big...Pray Bigger!


Monday, March 1, 2010

Set List 02.28.10

Here is the music that we used for 02.28.10 - Commitment Sunday:

[Worship Set]
Bb - How Great Is Our God - Tomlin/Reeves/Cash
Bb/C - You You Are God - Walker Beach
D - All Creatures Of Our God And King - Crowder/Draper/Milligan/Assisi
G# - Let My Words Be Few - Redman/Redman

[Closing Song]
A - Offering - Third Day

This week was "Commitment Sunday" where we go over what it means to join FBC. Jamie preached in REVEAL today and did a great job with a passage from Acts 8:26-40 on the Philip and the Ethiopian Eunuch. We opened with the Miller Lite commercial where the guy can't say "Love" to his girlfriend, but he can say that he'd "love" another beer. (NOTE: We at FBC do not in any way endorse Miller Light or any other alcohol manufacturer.) Here are the main points of the message:

4 Facets of Commitment
  1. Commitment to a relationship not a religion
  2. Available to all not limited to a select few
  3. Based on the work of Jesus not on our efforts
  4. Leads to Action
3 Questions
  1. Why are you doing what you're doing?
  2. What limits have you placed on God?
  3. When is the last time you said yes to God?
Remember that next week we are doing lunch after REVEAL so don't make other plans!

See what other worship leaders are doing here at Sunday Set Lists.

Dream Big...Pray Bigger!


Monday, February 22, 2010

Set List 02.21.10

Here is the music that we used for 02.21.10 - Red Letters - Week 3:

[Opening Song]
D - We Have Overcome - Israel Houghton (Elevation Worship Version)

[Worship Set]
A - Not To Us - Tomlin/Reeves
A - Beautiful The Blood - Fee/Giglio
A - The Stand (w/ Glory To God) - Houston/Fee

[Closing Song]
G - By His Wounds - Mac Powell

This week Steve preached on Mark 15:34:
And at the ninth hour Jesus cried out in a loud voice, "Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani?"—which means, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"
which is a quote from Psalm 22:1:
My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
Why are you so far from saving me,
so far from the words of my groaning?
The thing that stood out the most to me about this sermon was the fact that when you feel far from God, Jesus understands because he felt far from God during his time on the cross.

Steve closed with a note from Kelley Mitchell. For those of you who don't know, David Mitchell is our Youth Pastor here at First Baptist Church. His youngest daughter, Belle, had a brain tumor removed back in October and Kelley and Belle have been at St. Jude Children's Research Hospital for the past 4 months. You can check up on Belle's progress on CaringBridge.

On Saturday, we also had a Acts 11:29 Project. We helped out at the United Way's Project Connect event. This is a event to give immediate help to the homeless people here in York County. The turn out was not quite as big as the organizers had hoped, but a lot of good was still done. There were opportunities for the homeless to receive medical screenings, clothes, socks, haircuts, food, jobs, housing, chiropractic help, dental screenings and much much more. It was great seeing people come in and have their lives changed by something as small as a haircut.

Next week is Commitment Sunday. This will be a great opportunity for people to find out more about First Baptist Church and for people to join the church. Looking forward to it.

Check out what other worship leaders are doing at Sunday Setlists.

Dream Big...Pray Bigger!


Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Set List 02.14.10

Here is the music that we used for 02.14.10 - Week 2 of "Red Letters":

[Opening Song]
Bb - O Praise Him - David Crowder

[Worship Set]
E - King of Glory - Third Day
E - Enough - Chris Tomlin
E - Better Is One Day - Matt Redman

[Closing Song]
A - It Is Well - Todd Fields

This week we looked at the saying of Jesus in Luke 14:26 where he says:
If anyone comes to me and does not hate his father and mother, his wife and children, his brothers and sisters—yes, even his own life—he cannot be my disciple.
We had a great crowd this week at REVEAL. There is a lot of energy in the services and it is just a blast leading worship.

This weekend we have our Acts 11:29 Project on Saturday morning. We are partnering with Project Connect this month as they do a "fair" for the homeless of York County. Last year the event went great and I am sure that this years will be even better.

You can check out what some other worship leaders are doing here at Sunday Set Lists.

Dream Big...Pray Bigger!


Monday, February 15, 2010

Sunday Recap

Sunday was a very good day at Reveal. Attendance was up and we had a few first time guests hanging out with us. We are in week 2 of our Red Letters series and Steve preached from Luke 14:25-27.

Here are some of the highlights:
  • We like to look at Jesus's command to 'hate our mother, father' as just him saying we are supposed to love Him more than you love others including your family. But that doesn't go far enough.
  • The Greek word translated 'hate' in Luke 14:26 literally means 'hate.'
  • Our connection to Christ has to be stronger than our any other connection that we have.
  • Family connections are never to get in the way of following Christ.
  • How much did Jesus give for you? Everything. What does Jesus then expect from us? Everything. It's a high calling.
  • Jesus calls us to come to where He is. To do that we may have to leave others including those we love behind.
  • Then He calls us to follow him. Once we've gotten to where He is, then we are to follow Him wherever He leads us.
  • Steve loves Kentucky basketball.
  • Steve's favorite place he's lived is Louisville, KY.
  • Things (sports teams, places, people) become important in our lives.
  • We can't let our attachment to those things become so important that we're not willing to give them up to follow Christ.
  • One day, Steve is gonna die and all those things (including his UK memorabilia) are gonna get left behind.
  • When we follow Christ, the things we 'give up' are replaced by things that are much more satisfying and fulfilling.

I had someone ask me yesterday if we had already done a Red Letters series. And, yes, yes we have. We did a Red Letters series last February and the plan is to make Red Letters an annual sermon series where we look at some of the teachings of Jesus that are radical and that call us to a new way of life and living.

If you didn't make it yesterday, hope to see you next week.

-- Peace, Jamie

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Super Bowl XLIV

The National Football League is somewhat of an obsession of mine. As soon as the clock ticked to 0:00 on Sunday night, I was beginning to think about free agents, drafts, and OTAs. NASCAR will get me through to the Fall but the NFL is the sport that I'm most passionate about.

I was pulling for the Colts on Sunday (and actually thought they would win). Anybody who knows me understands that I am terrible at picking winners. I thought the Jets would beat the Colts and the Vikings would beat the Saints in the Conference finals. So I'm not surprised that the Colts lost.

But football is not what I'm here to talk about. I drove around to a few different places on Sunday night and so I missed a lot of the commercials. Sometimes this can be a good thing but other times I truly enjoy some of the commercials. Anyway one of the things on my to do list on the week after the Super Bowl is catch all the TV spots. I think I saw them all!

Here are my top 3:

THIS (and reruns of the Vikings-Saints game on my DVR) will be my football fix until the fall.


Sometimes using your imagination is better than any image that can be put on the screen. Google gets the award for doing the most with the least.


Then the Betty White/ Abe Vigoda Snickers commercial which apparently Snickers doesn't want shown anywhere but on their website. Not sure when I'll be involved in a football game like this but if Snickers can make feel that much better, I buying.


Of course there were some bad ones: the Casual Friday ad, the Dockers I Wear No Pants ad and all of the Denny's chicken ads. Whoa, those just creeped me out.

I'd love to hear what some of your favorites were.

-- Peace, Jamie