Acknowledgments on Graduation Day

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Today is graduation day for me.  I hesitate to post something, because I have already been congratulated several times by so many of you.  But, I want to share my “Acknowledgment” page of my dissertation (I shared my dedication page a few weeks ago). I do this, because this accomplishment would not have happened without a team of people who believed in me and worked for me. No doubt, more people deserve to be acknowledged, but there was limit to space in the dissertation. I dedicated my work to my family, but they are rightfully acknowledged again. So to everyone on this list, THANK YOU in every way!

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

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To Dr. Charles Lea, dissertation committee chair, thank you for your mentorship, encouragement, and friendship. You used your vast experience and network to help me succeed. This project would not have been a success without your excellent leadership.

To Dr. Bryan Carrier and Dr. C. William McKee, dissertation committee members, thank you for your guidance and encouragement throughout this process. Your contributions were key factors in my success.

To Mrs. Amy Heckman, your hard work and helpful attitude for this study were invaluable. I appreciate so much your professionalism and skill.

To Dr. Charles Gaulden, thank you for pushing me to pursue my doctorate at a time when I believed the dream had passed.  Your constant encouragement through this process has been a crucial guide.

To the leadership and people of The Church at Indian Lake, thank you for giving me the flexibility and shared resources to pursue this dream.

To my children, Abbey, Luke, and Lincoln, thank you for your understanding when I was distracted or not fully present for you during this project. I believe we have many years of great times together.

To my wife, Beth, your encouragement and support of me goes beyond what words can adequately express. You are my life partner, and I am so thankful we did this together.

Happy Birthday Israel!

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From our friends at the ICEJ:

“Today, Israel celebrates 69 years of independence!

In May of 1948, David Ben-Gurion, the first prime minister of Israel, publicly declared Israel’s Independence. At that time, the fledgling state had only 806,000 residents. Today, Israel’s population exceeds 8.6 million!

Israel’s existence is clear evidence of God’s faithfulness to His promises given to Abraham thousands of years ago. We salute Israel today and rejoice with her! We know her future is secure, because God watches over her day and night!

We congratulate the people of Israel on their 69th year of independence!”

Easter Continues!

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(Painting is “Disciples John and Peter on their way to the tomb on Easter morning” by Eugène Burnand in 1898)

Easter continues! Easter is not one Sunday, it is a season to celebrate the resurrection power of Jesus in fresh and powerful ways. On Sunday, I will be preaching from 1 Peter 1:3-9 a message called “The Resurrection Brings Us…”

 
We’ll have Forward 101 lunch afterwards and 242 Groups through out the day.
 
What a Sunday! Bring yourself and a friend.
We have an alive God to celebrate and enjoy!
 

Good Friday Service

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I can’t think of a more meaningful service of the year than our Good Friday Service.  CIL will have a time of worship on Friday, April 14 at 7:00 p.m.  I invite you to come as a family as we remember Jesus’ death and sacrifice for us.   Service will last less than an hour and we will take communion as a church.   Join me and my family in honor of Jesus to begin this special weekend.

Anticipating Easter

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This Sunday is Easter. CIL leaders have been working on the building and property for quite some time to get ready for this Sunday. We will set out extra chairs, schedule more greeters, and print more Reviews.  When all of us show up on the same Sunday like we do each Easter, it creates quite a buzz.

Many will buy a new outfit, the worship team will practice more than usual, and I will feel a bit more pressure to nail the sermon.  There will be a fresh energy – a delightful mixture of cultural tradition and spiritual practice.  We do all of this because

Jesus is worth it!  Jesus is more than worthy of this tradition, effort, and love.

I look forward to seeing you at either 9am or 10:45am this Resurrection Sunday!

Holy Week points me to Jesus

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We are in Holy Week, leading to Easter Sunday. The death of Jesus, and his resurrection, was the pinnacle of history. Everything changed after these events. Even the modern calendar is based off these occurrences (B.C. / A.D.).
The most important question we answer in life is what our posture is towards Jesus Christ. I have believed that He is the son of God and the expression of God’s love for the world. I have made Jesus the Christ my sovereign. I follow His teachings, leadership and active presence in my life. This has been my greatest decision. My greatest honor.
Eternal life has already begun for me though faith in Jesus. I am so grateful for this fortunate grace on my life. Still, I know that any human being who believes Jesus is God receives this same blessing. Please take time to reflect on what Jesus means to you this week. No consideration is more important.