October 28, 2009

Children's Wing Update

As you know we are in the process of up fitting the Children's Wing. We joined together over the summer months to raise the funds to complete the construction. Many of you gave faithfully and sacrificially. We did a three month giving campaign, which technically ended in August. But the need for funds was still there, and many of you have continued to give. We are about $2000 short of our projected need. Praise God! Thank you for your generous gifts!

Dane Kovach has been leading the effort to complete this task. The Lord has provided us with a plumber and an electrician who are offering their services and expertise for free. We also have a great group of volunteers who have been giving their time and talent to help us get the job done. Our goal is to be in the building before Christmas. And what a relief that will be for Children's Ministry! The kids have been meeting in a small room since January.

Thank you for giving faithfully to this project. If you would like to make a donation, be sure and include a note, or write on the check, "Monroe Children's Wing."

Dane told me we had the electrical and plumbing rough inspections today. Yipee! That means we can complete the drywall and get ready to paint the walls. In fact - if you want to help hang some drywall, come on out this Saturday at 8:30am. No experience necessary, we just need your help!

The HVAC crew is busy getting the heating and air conditioning ready. Things are really starting to fall into place. Here are a few pictures so you can get an idea of what is happening.

October 14, 2009

But You're So Busy...

"But you're so busy..." That's what I often hear from people. "I wanted to email you, or talk to you, but I know how busy you are, so I decided not to bother you."

I've heard this one enough that I thought it would be good to set the record straight. Yes, I am busy. But that is not the point. We are all busy. Here's my take - you are my job. You are my responsibility. When God called me into the ministry, He called me to care for people. I can't care for people if I am not in relationship with people. Jesus was busy. So busy that the disciples forbade the little children from coming to see Him. But what did Jesus do? He said "Let them come! I always have time for these." Now I'm not saying you are little children...my point is this: it doesn't matter how busy you think I am, I will make time for you.

So yes - I'm busy. But don't let that stop you from asking that question, or making that phone call. I will make time for you.

October 13, 2009

Hold My Hand

My wife's van had a tire that was getting low on air. I had filled it back up, but the air pressure slowly leaked out, so I decided to take it to have it looked at. I took Kelsey and we went to Discount Tire. I dropped the van off and we decided to go and visit Walmart while we were waiting. Discount Tire and Walmart are in the same parking lot, so off we went, through the busy parking lot, of course, holding hands. Who would ever think of walking through a parking lot like that without holding their 4 year old's hand!

On the way back to pick up the van, as we were walking hand in hand, we came to an empty parking lot next to Discount Tire. There was no traffic, so I let go of Kelsey's hand and said "go on!" So she ran on ahead of me...the next thing I knew, she was laying face first in the parking lot screaming bloody murder! She had not noticed a small rise in the pavement, and had tripped, skinning her knees. I ran to pick her up, and she immediately had these words for me, through her streaming tears: "Daddy, it's your fault, you're the one who let go of my hand and told me to go on ahead!"

I tried not to laugh in her face. My fault? Give me a break! 30 seconds earlier she had been pulling at my hand, trying to get free, so she could run on her own! I finally let her go, and it's my fault?

I suddenly had another thought. When "bad things" happen in life, who do we immediately blame? Don't most people turn to God and say "Why? Why did you let this happen? It's Your fault!" Really? Is it really God's fault that I got hurt when I made a bad choice? Is it really God's fault when pain comes into my life?

You know what I think? I think that God walks with us, much like I was walking with Kelsey. He protects us from danger. He helps us make smart choices. But there comes a point when He allows us to "run on ahead." He let's go of our hands so we can experience freedom, independence. Not in a "lose your salvation" kind of way. I mean more in a metaphorical sense. He allows us to freely choose something, knowing we might get hurt. Does that make Him mean? Not any more mean than it makes me for letting my daughter run on ahead!

I heard someone last week talk about failure. He said "failure is essential." Without failure, we would not learn. When we make a mistake, that is our opportunity to learn! I hope Kelsey learned to be more careful when running through a parking lot. Sometimes we have to learn the same lesson several times, but we hopefully learn something from our mistakes. Without ever falling, without ever failing, we would not learn the way we do through our failures and mistakes.

So let me ask you this. Is God "holding your hand"? Are you begging God to let you run on ahead? Are you trying to pull away so that you can go try something new and different? When He does let you go, and you fall flat on your face, just remember who it was who was pulling in the first place! Don't run back to God in tears blaming Him!

Hold on to His hand, but be willing to learn from your mistakes as well. Remember, failure is essential.

October 02, 2009

Chad Manus - Behold Story

Here is the third interview from church on Sunday. Chad started coming to the Monroe Campus when we were still meeting in the school. He's been faithfully attending, and it has been so great to watch him grow in his relationship with Jesus. Enjoy!

Chad Manus - Behold Story from Geoffrey Janes on Vimeo.

October 01, 2009

Behold Stories - Karen Jahn

As promised, here is the second interview from this past Sunday. Karen Jahn has been a faithful part of the Monroe campus for about 6 or 8 months. She is a joy and a blessing to have. Here's her story:

Karen Jahn - Behold Story from Geoffrey Janes on Vimeo.