Wednesday, December 21, 2011


well this isn't a reverb post, but this is a post from my heart.

this word, sovereignty, has been on my mind and heart a whole lot lately. and honestly i can't grasp what it is I'm suppose to be learning from it. maybe i need to search scripture. maybe its for the very purpose of me learning something very soon. or maybe it is something i have already learned. but whatever it is, I'm going to seek.

our good friend webster defines this word sovereignty as "supreme excellence or the example of it" and "supreme power" and "freedom from external control". now looking at these definitions one can see that there is a resounding theme with each of these definitions. what is that theme you may ask? well, its the understanding that sovereignty initially means to be set apart. now, if i have done my homework properly then i can further dive into this word and see that 'to be set apart' means to be HOLY. and that my friends is a status found in the I AM because He IS just that: HOLY. it is so unique to His nature that it is a characteristic only bound to Him. now, in 1 Peter 1, the apostle Peter describes an act of conduct to the exiles that are dispersed throughout the region as one that may be a little farfetched to those who do not belong to the Lord. in v15 he writes, "but as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct". that is very interesting isn't, especially since i just described that God is the only one who has attained the characteristic of "being Holy". I'm not saying that we are in any way in relation to being God, but rather the only way that we can ever attain something so high is apart from ourselves. you see, the only reason Peter can make this claim for us to be Holy just as the Creator of the universe is Holy is because there has been something done for us to attain this...

"But the free gift is not like the trespass. For if many died through one man's trespass, much more have the grace of God and the free gift by the grace of that one man Jesus Christ abounded for many. And the free gift is not like the result of that one man's sin. For the judgment following one trespass brought condemnation, but the free gift following many trespasses brought justification. For if, because of one man's trespass, death reigned through that one man, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and the free gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man Jesus Christ. Therefore, as one trespass led to condemnation for all men, so one act of righteousness leads to justification and life for all men. For as by the one man'sdisobedience the many were made sinners, so by the one man's obedience the many will be made righteous." [Romans 5:15-19]

you see, God did something only He could do and He did it perfectly. that was all done apart from ourselves. why? cause we can't. [notice that i wrote that in present tense] there is no way on earth that i can ever attain something so perfect on my own. C.S. Lewis writes in his book, Mere Christianity, "The perfect submission, the perfect suffering, the perfect death were not only easier to Jesus because He was God, but were possible only because He was God." Jesus Himself had to make a way for me to stand holy before God. and it isn't me that God sees, rather it is Christ standing before me. it is by the wounds of a Savior that i can stand clean before the Father. and in that i fall on my knees in humble adoration. i have been sanctified, cleansed, redeemed, bought with a price. i am still learning to trust. and i am learning to be just like my Father in all i say and do, and that is to be holy.

that was all for my/our good that Christ died, and its because He is sovereign over us all. He is supreme in power. He is separate from all others. He IS. and in all that, i find myself trembling, yet having so much peace.

i leave you with this song. i feel that it encompasses everything i just wrote. blessings friends.

There is strength within the sorrow, There is beauty in our tears
You meet us in our mourning, With a love that casts out fear
You are working in our waiting, Sanctifying us
When beyond our understanding, You’re teaching us to trust

Your plans are still to prosper, You have not forgotten us
You’re with us in the fire and the flood
Faithful forever, Perfect in love
You are sovereign over us

You are wisdom unimagined, Who could understand your ways
Reigning high above the heavens, Reaching down in endless grace
Youʼre the Lifter of the lowly, Compassionate and kind
You surround and You uphold me, Your promises are my delight

Even what the enemy means for evil
You turn it for our good, You turn it for our good and for your glory
Even in the valley You are faithful
Youʼre working for our good, Youʼre working for our good and for your glory

Thursday, December 8, 2011


Prompt: Where did you spend money?

hmm. this seems to be a very difficult item to discuss. i never like talking about money, and truthfully i feel that the world would be a much better place if there were no currency. so, in a world where everyone rides horses and drinks coffee and sleeps till they can't sleep anymore there shall be no currency. but since there is i will now loosely talk about where i spent mine this past year.

the majority of my money went to my car. and by my car i mean what went into it. i spent a majority of my money on gasoline. why does it have to be so expensive??

but i will not take back all the memories that i hold because of all the gas money I've spent. it has carried me to see the lovely girl of mine, the many trips back home to spend time with family, the many trips to cities to minister to kids, and the many moments when i just needed to drive and spend time with the Lord. it was well spent and I'm glad the Lord has blessed me with this gift.

i also bought my first couch this year. unfortunately, this is the only piece of furniture that i have my house is empty. I'm saving up, but it might be a while. here is a picture of it with a wonderful addition added in....

i have also cherished the many times i have had the ability to buy another meal for someone else, whether this be for Landon, John, Corey, Laura, my sisters and bro, or any other random person that i feel the impression to bless. I've been blessed so why keep that to myself??

thats all i got on this post....i told you i didn't like talking about money....

until next time!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

highly prized.

Prompt: Who was important to you? What do you hope to remember?

Well this one is going to be a hard one because honestly there are too many people in my life that have been important to me and so many memories that I would like to keep fresh on my mind this past year. So, I will attempt to put them together.

My family has been important to me. Through all of life’s circumstances I know and can find rest in the fact that I have a loving and supportive family—a luxury that some people lack. Specifically, this past year when I struggled through relationships my brother and sisters were there to encourage me. When I attempted my trek through Spain, my brother helped me navigate the underground and streets of some of Spain’s more populated areas alone. I also struggled this past year on what I should do regarding a job. My parents gave me pointers and prayed with me through this tough decision. But even in the simplicity of life they have proven to be important to me as well. The moments that I spent laughing with all of them around a table playing games in the mountains of Georgia will be cherished forever. I got to watch the Iron Bowl domination with my family this year as well. A day full of “Roll Tide” and football food will always be remembered. I cant help but think how blessed I am to have the 7 of them in my life. Its one blessing after another and I know there is more to come.

Landon Young has been important to me. I started mentoring/discipling Landon a little over a year ago, and I can remember the exact moment when he asked me to walk along side him and encourage him in his faith. When I started attending Country Woods Baptist Church in August of 2010, I knew that the Lord needed me to serve there. Part of the reasons why is because He started allowing me to be involved in areas that I never thought possible. I was voted on to the Youth Leadership council before I was even a member of the church. God was doing some neat stuff in my life and I was just glad that I was along for the ride. Well during this time it was laid on my heart that I needed to be discipling someone in the youth group. I didn't know what that was going to look like, or who it was going to be, but I definitely trusted the Lord in this. Well a few weeks after this had been placed on my heart I get a text message from a little boy named Landon Young. He didn't really want to talk about much, but rather he asked me a very simple question. He asked, "Will you be my mentor?" My first reaction was "who is this kid", and then a shear horror/fear came over me. A kid I didn't know all that well wanted me to mentor and disciple him. Come to think about it, I don't know what this kid was thinking, but one thing I do know now, is that God definitely knew what He was thinking. I agreed to mentor him and truthfully my life has not been the same. Landon and I have grown so close together and I have gotten to watch him grow up to be an amazing young man. But why is he so important to me? First of all, he is the little brother I've never had and he continually keeps me on track. There is no way on earth that I can disciple him if I am not in a position to learn from the Father myself. He encourages me tremendously and the level of respect this kid has is overwhelming. So thank you Landon for being you. I love ya brother!! Some of the most memorable times that we have had: eating hotdogs at Traceway Park, memorizing James 1 together, and staying up late to win a prized empty milk jug in a game of Kemps.

Matt Mahaffey has been important to me. Matt has grown to be my best friend here in Mississippi. Matt and I have one of the most awkward relationships ever, but that is what makes it so special. He is always encouraging and always willing to go out of his way to pour into my life. It has been good seeing him grow over the past year too. I remember specifically after this summer when he came back from Canada and I came back from camp that I saw an amazing change in his life. It’s like the Lord completely changed his perspective on the gospel and radically changed his confidence in the Lord. It’s so neat to see that in people’s lives, especially ones that have a solid place in your heart. Some of the most memorable times I’ve had with Matt: the numerous skits we made a fool of ourselves in on Wednesday nights, wrestling in the sanctuary, praying to the point of tears on numerous occasions, and yelling at a baseball player with the number 33. Can’t wait to spend another year with this guy!!

And last, but certainly not least, Laura has been important to me. The past year with this girl has truly been one amazing ride. There is not a day that goes by that I do not miss her more than the day before, and I wait in eager anticipation till the next time that I get to be with her. I am completely overwhelmed by the fact that she continually chooses someone like me when she deserves so much better. She will deny that last statement, but it’s so true. She is so encouraging to me. She is continually my number one fan. She is always cheering me on and loves to hear about my day; and even if it doesn’t seem to be all that exciting she will some how make it more interesting than it was. She makes me stretch my own ability to learn and grow. She is encouraging spiritually and is always willing to pray for me. What I would do with out this girl? I dunno. And I don’t want to think about that idea. I can not wait to see where this road will take us this next year, but I’m definitely looking forward to the million miles we have left to go. Things I want to remember about Laura and I this past year: driving 8 hours to take her on a date, smashing cupcakes in her face (and getting a face full myself), adopting baby dinosaurs, walking the trails behind the intramural fields at UGA, taking pictures of that pretty girl in a field of weeds, being interrupted by garbage duty, listening to her talk about her summer, worshipping in the car on the 5 hour drive back to Athens from Alabama, working a DNOW in Brewton, AL, staring at the fox in the corner, making soup for friends and fellowship, dancing in the kitchen, and being asked on a continual basis when Laura is coming back to Jackson. Soon people. Very soon.

These people are not all the people that have been important to me, nor do these memories encompass all that I would like to remember. If I were to list all the people (CK7, FBC Brewton, Noah, HCS kids/staff, Mrs. Browning—she’s my favorite teacher, CWBC youth/family, etc.) and memories from this past year, I suppose that I would have to write a library full of books to capture the beauty of friendship and experience.

Until next time!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

hanging with louis and clark.

Prompt: What did you discover?

i like to consider myself a very adventurous person. i like the odds and ends of not knowing things sometimes, and i feel more often than not that i discover new things about myself and others every single day. this year i discovered a cornucopia(yeah, i just used that word) of different things. some were funny, some were ironic, some were tough, and others i wish were never discovered. but nonetheless these discoveries helped me learn.

i discovered that i am not made for mountain biking.
my brother-in-law, matt, took me and my brother on a biking trip to ride some trails over thanksgiving break. i did not like it at all. that was the first time that i had every attempted mountain biking and he had me riding the "more advanced" trails. i think i bruised my hands more than anything because i was gripping the handle bars so tightly as i peered off the side of the mountain. my butt also hurt by the end of the ride. i definitely told him that i would have rather ran the trails because i was better at that. any who, it was a new thing for me and this discovery was definitely one that will impact any further decisions about biking.

i discovered that 9th graders are super funny.
i teach all the 9th graders at hillcrest and each and every one of them has a quirky side to them. i even have found new things out about kids i had known prior to working there. i won't list any names, but here are some of the conversations that i have had with these kids in class:

Student: "Coach Teague, are you Chinese?"
Me: "Ugh, no. Do I look Chinese?"

Me: "So the plate movement of subduction simply means that one tectonic plate goes beneath the other one."
Student: "Subduction! You mean like aliens!!?"
Me: "No. That is abduction."

Me: "I am a very wise person."
Student: "No you're not."
Me: "Only an ignorant and unintelligible person would not think I am wise."
Student: "I don't know what that means."
Me: "Point proven."

Me: "Industries like NASA moved down here to the South..."
Student: " them racecars?"
Me: "No. That's Nascar."
Student: "Same thing."

Me: "The majority of Russia has a tundra climate."
Student: "I thought tundras were those things that came out of an elephants mouth."
Me: "Those are tusks."

and this is my favorite phrase...
"Coach Teague, this may be a stupid question, but...."
and usually a very unintelligible comment proceeds.

i just love these kids. there is never a dull moment.

i discovered my affection for a certain individual.
i knew Laura for a little over a year before we actually started dating, but i think that affection was always there, i just didn't know what it was. i didn't know how i felt about her until we both worked a weekend retreat in brewton, al together. i got to watch her first hand love on and disciple kids again which is one of the aspects that i love about her. she has such a heart for others and the Lord that it is breathtaking. and i tell people all the time that the number one thing i like about her is that her relationship with me looks like garbage compared to the affection that she has for her Maker. that is something i have prayed for and desired in the person that i date. its amazing that she has stayed with me this long, but i am glad that she chooses me every single day. i learn and discover new things about her on a consistent basis and i can't wait to learn more from her. so thank you laura for being so awesome!

i have discovered more and more who Christ has made me to be.
my journal has page after page on things that the Lord has taught me over the past year. there are prayers on things i have yet to discover and ones that i have come to discover and learn from. it is amazing how beautiful the Lord continues to be each day. so i challenge each of you to ask the Lord to help you discover something new about Him and yourself on a daily basis, and i promise you that if you so desire it, then it will happen. "Call to me and I will answer you. I will tell you the deep and hidden things that you do not know." Jeremiah 33:3

i think that is it for the night.

until next time!

Monday, December 5, 2011


Prompt: When did you struggle?

I feel that struggle can come in many different ways. I can struggle in a fight (which I did this past year and won mind you—thanks Mahaffey-butt), or struggle to get up in the mornings, or struggle to fully give myself over to the cause of Christ. In my life I feel that at some point in time we will have endured all types of struggles in life, but it isn’t the struggle that defines who we are, but rather the response we have in the midst of adversary.

For me I would say the biggest struggle I have is when I am in the very presence of my Father. I heard a wise man say that our biggest struggle we will have with the enemy is during or after a spiritual high. Why? Because Satan doesn’t want us there as professors of the faith. There is so much truth behind it. And if we look in scripture we will see that even Jesus went through the very same thing…

And Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the wilderness for forty days, being tempted by the devil. And he ate nothing during those days. And when they were ended, he was hungry. The devil said to him, "If you are the Son of God, command this stone to become bread." And Jesus answered him, "It is written, 'Man shall not live by bread alone.'" And the devil took him up and showed him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time, and said to him, "To you I will give all this authority and their glory, for it has been delivered to me, and I give it to whom I will. If you, then, will worship me, it will all be yours." And Jesus answered him, "It is written,"'You shall worship the Lord your God, and him only shall you serve.'" And he took him to Jerusalem and set him on the pinnacle of the temple and said to him, "If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down from here, for it is written, "'He will command his angels concerning you, to guard you, 'and "'On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.'" And Jesus answered him, "It is said, 'You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.'" And when the devil had ended every temptation, he departed from him until an opportune time. And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit to Galilee, and a report about him went out through all the surrounding country. Luke 4:1-14

Here we see that Jesus himself struggled with the enemy when He was spending intimate time with the Father. And how did Jesus respond? By quoting scripture and standing firm in His belief that the Father would take care of His every need. Jesus found rest at the Father’s side and by doing so He was able to resist every temptation that Satan threw at Him.

Now as for me I have responded like Jesus. I have stood firm on His sweet and perfect promises. But then again I have fallen in my struggle. More times then I would have liked to. And in the moments of each fall I would hang my head in shame. But I can feel even to this day that God Himself takes His hand and lifts my head. He looks at me and says that forgiveness is mine because of Jesus. And in that I can stand firm. In that promise I find full hope. I find full relief. I find full rest.

His grace is beautiful isn’t it? “The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end.” Lamentations 3:22

Until next time!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

take a look.

Prompt: What books did you read?

C.S. Lewis said, "Eating and reading are two pleasure that combine admirably." now honestly i can say that i have definitely eaten more than i have read, but the books that i have read have been quite wonderful to say the least. now if you know me, i am not one of the biggest readers in the world. i wish i was. i wish i were the one who has read over a hundred books during the year. but thats not me. but what i have learned from the books i have read will always stick with me.

Radical by David Platt
my church did an entire study on this book and can i tell you how changed i was because of it. i learned my lesson in true believing and in the way that i treat the world around me. taking every opportunity as an opportunity for ministry is key in our relationship with the Lord.

Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan
i read this book this summer with some friends of mine on CK7. it officially turned into "CK Storytime" which ended up being a highlight of our weekends. while reading this book, i was reminded of my imagination. how books like this can stretch us to think of things beyond our wildest dreams. i know in reality that this book on gods (yes, with a little 'g') is all but fiction, but it reminded me of how much of a child at heart that i need to be. let those imaginations flow. God did. He made us didn't he?

“A children's story that can only be enjoyed by children is not a good children's story in the slightest.” -C.S. Lewis

Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis
now before i go into this one, i just want you all to know that i am still reading this book. not because it's long or anything, but simply because Lewis is one deep dude. i have found myself reading, rereading, and rereading again certain passages through this book. it is that profound. Lewis was a literary genius and a sound believer. he would definitely be on my list of people to meet that have now passed away.

This is one of my favorite passages of the book...
now on to the book...
lewis view of christianity is simple. now i know that i said i had to reread all these passages, but its different. its so simple that its too deep. i know that it sounds like that statement contradicts itself, but you just need to read it yourself. in the middle of a war torn society of great britain, lewis attempts to find shelter for himself and for others in the arms of a loving savior. denominational doctrine is put to shame as lewis shares deeply the root of all true faith: Jesus Christ. i can't help but say that this is my favorite selection this past year. one that i am determined to finish by the years end.

The remainder of the Percy Jackson Series
Erasing Hell by Francis Chan and Preston Sprinkle
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
The Hole in the Gospel by Richard Stearns
Louder Than Words by Andy Stanley

Saturday, December 3, 2011

hey! i know!!

Prompt: Who did you meet?

hmm. where to start...

there have been several different people that i have met this past year, but i would say that there are some very specific relationships that i built this past year that have helped shape who i am.

i will begin with these guys....

very few of these people i knew beforehand, but by the end of this past summer i realized how much i was missing out on without these people in my life. i had the wonderful opportunity of spiritually leading these amazing individuals this summer as their camp pastor, but little did i know by the time the summer had taken its course, they would have spiritually led me. i walked into the summer hoping to at least make some what of a difference in these individuals lives, but rather they made a difference in mine more than i would have dreamed of. so i thank all of you for the amazing laughs, tears, heartaches, sleepless nights, and awkward moments. by meeting all of you i am a better person and have grown closer to the Maker in which we all still faithfully serve. i love you all.

along with that i met so many amazing young people at camp this summer. you can read there stories here, for i won't go into detail about all of the again. but here are a few pictures...

another group of individuals that i got to meet this year are the amazing individuals that i get to teach every single day. notice that i said i "get" to. it isn't an "i have to" situation. the Lord has definitely blessed me with an amazing opportunity to pour out and invest into these kids lives which i fully give Him all the glory for. there is never a dull moment with them and i cherish every moment i have teaching and learning from them.

lastly, one of the most significant meetings that i have had recently is from a security guard at kroger. i do not know this individuals name, but he definitely made an impact in my life. a couple of weeks ago i was ringing the Salvation Army bell outside the kroger in byram when this man came outside to get a breather. as he sat out there he began to be interested in why i was ringing the bell. so i got to share with him how my church family has made it a ministry opportunity to serve and ring the bell at this location. well, from there he became very inquisitive about my faith. he didn't understand how the Lord can call people and change someone's life. the conversation, in my mind, went down hill. he tried everything to frustrate me, and truthfully i feel that he accomplished his goal. but when the conversation seemed to be finished, he looked at my, thanked me, and said that he had begun to think about some things. i left that night feeling defeated, but then got home and realized that i had done just what i was commanded to do: to share the gospel. it isn't my place to change hearts. its the Lords. and from that conversation i was reminded of the fact that the Lord will use me in my weakness and will reveal the gospel to whom He so desires. i simply need to be willing. and that is what i will leave with you all. always be willing, even with the people that you meet, you never know what impact you can have on them, but also the impact they can have on you.

until next time!

Friday, December 2, 2011

taking a first look.

so after a lovely post by the beautiful Laura Register, i have now decided to join in the craze of #Reverb11. so here is my feeble attempt at doing so...

Prompt #1: Where did 2011 begin?

well i can't say much about this post without completely copying the words from Laura's post, but truthfully i was in the same place that she was. in a wonderful town outside the avenue (which isn't a street mind you) spending the most wonderful few hours with people that i love so dearly. it just goes to show that camp friends aren't just friends, but rather they are family. as i brought in the new year with them i got to laugh and cry (from laughing of course) and celebrate life, but also count the many blessings that had impacted me so drastically over the last year.

i was rounding off the completion of my first full year in mississippi where i had begun a new chapter of my life. as stated in posts from the past, i didn't understand God's calling on my life to mississippi for the longest time until the few short weeks prior to ending 2010 and beginning 2011. i actually remember having a very distinct discussion with my mother on how i finally knew my purpose here. through the many relationships that i had built in jackson and the many opportunities the Lord has provided for me to grow but to also pour my heart out, i finally knew why i was called here: to bring Him glory with my life. sounds simple, right? well, thats because it is. but i feel sometimes we miss out on what God has for us due to the simple fact that we don't want to be changed. we don't want to be stretched. and by hardening our hearts like this we fail to fulfill the very purpose of why we were created. that goes all the way back to Genesis 1. the Lord took Adam from the dirt of the ground and then proceeded to make Eve from his ribs and made them both to walk, eat, and breathe in the very presence of God. for His purposes and not their own. and then what happened? yeah, you may have guessed it. these two creatures made in the very image of God royally messed it up. they took hold of their own agenda and defied the very purpose they were created for. and because of one man's sin, i too have that very inclination to do what i so desire. but the story doesn't end there. even though one man's disobedience had brought me/us death, it is also by one man's obedience that we can all be made righteous. wow. so beautiful.

and that is what was on the forefront of my mind as a stepped into the new year. and that's the neat thing about the Lord; He has a very peculiar way of revealing things to His people in His timing.

and now as i think about this year coming to a close i can once again sit and ponder this little heart of mine, and think back on all the many blessings the Lord has bestowed on me (but we will keep those hidden until the proper time--possibly in another reverb post)

well there you have it. the first of many #reverb11 posts. sorry, about grammar and the flow of the post. i haven't written in a while, so i need to get used to it again.

until next time!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

the shortest way home.

as i reflect back on the week in itself and the "eventful" weekend that i had, i cant help but think that God has me right where He needs me.

i finished my first week up at school, and even though this is totally new for me, i have a feeling that this year will be an amazing time of growth for me as well as my students. i have already grown to love them all so dearly and they are consistently challenging me. it also doesnt help that there is never a dull moment. i already have some pretty funny quotes....

i have missed my family here in Jackson/Clinton/Byram. it is so neat to have come back to a place and see what has happened since i have been gone. my church family has grown so much over the course of the summer, and i love the fact that they are in total pursuit of the Lord and His working in their lives. thats the real Church right there. granted that we are not perfect, but we are trying. i love them all.

so i have also been reading Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis, and can i tell you that it is blowing me away. Lewis is such a simple writer, and im pretty sure that he claims to be simple, but his stuff is so deep. im having to read and reread several times before i get a grasp of what he is saying. i read this beautiful passage this afternoon, and let me tell you, it speaks so soundly of my own heart right now:

"I may repeat 'Do as you would be done by' till I am black in the face, but I cannot really carry it out till I love my neighbour as myself: and I cannot learn to love my neighbour as myself till I learn to love God: and I cannot learn to love God except by learning to obey Him. And so, as I warned you, we are driven on to something more inward--driven on from social matters to religious matters. For the longest way round is the shortest way home."

my heart is right along with his words here. i desire to continually pursue this love that has been lavished on me. and in doing so i love on others and by doing that i have to pursue an obedient lifestyle. not for my own selfish gain, but rather as a sign of surrender to my King.

im sure that i can and will write more on this guy, but honestly as long as it has been taking me to read it, i dont think i have the time to unpack it all....

and to end this wonderful post--things i miss:
-my family
-my girlfriend
-furniture (i have very little right now)
-playing soccer
-running on a consistent basis
-my dog

well, thats all i got for now. so until next time.....

Saturday, August 6, 2011

so much to say.

i have been trying to process this past summer in more ways than one, but i have ben so busy that i havent had time to rest and reflect. granted that i took my plane trip to read and listen (and sleep), but i really havent taken the time to process everything that the Lord showed me and taught me this summer. so here is my first feeble attempt to do just that....

**please disregard any incomplete thoughts and/or unclear stories that may be represented below. thanks.

wow. this summer has been one whirlwind of a summer. as many of you know i spent my fourth summer on staff with CentriKid Camps, and i know that i say this every summer (and there is so much truth in it), but this was the summer that i grew the most.

when i arrived at the airport in May and awkwardly met some of the people that i would be serving with, gave away my number to parents i didnt know so they could check on their child, and found out i would immediately be driving a truck all summer, i was NOT even close to being ready to let God change my heart--but that's the beauty of it all, sometimes we arent always ready when He is. in that i actually find so much comfort. weird, huh?

training week passed and i became quickly close (that sounds funny) to my team in more ways than one. from long nights laughing to wonderful conversations. i was immediately blessed by a wonderful group of individuals. i know that i have long life friends from this group of people, and i cant wait to see where the Lord takes all of them.

my role changed a lot this summer at camp. i had the wonderful privilege of not being a bible study/team leader anymore...and for those of you that know me i would have never said that was a privilege at the beginning of the summer because that is all i knew...but rather, i had the wonderful opportunity to be the camp pastor. and let me tell you, that is a very humbling experience. and the funny thing about being camp pastor is that you have to be on stage. and little note about me, i dont like large crowds. im an introvert at heart and desire to be alone or with a small group of people. my heart is for discipleship and so it was funny when the Lord placed it on my heart to serve him in this new role. but i was reminded this summer by a very godly man while i was at Eckord College in Florida. his name was mike. mike was the senior pastor at his church and he is a very humble man. when we were discussing these things as listed above, he reminded me of the life of Jesus (go figure). and what he told me i will never forget, and i used it as motivation to continue to pursue Him. what he told me was is that Jesus loved one-on-one ministry. He loved to be with the people. He discipled the tweleve, He ministered to widows and orphans, and even spent time with the government officials. but when He was asked by His heavenly Father, He would step away from the intentionality of small groups to minister to the multitudes. wow. was i ever humbled. i realized then that this was one of the moments that i had to step away from being comfortable where i was at to speak on behalf of my Father in a different way then i was accustomed to. and i thank God for that moment He spoke through mike. without it i dont know what would have happened, but praise God it did.

because i was pastor i didnt have the time i got to spend with kids normally. i spent a lot of time with adults this time too. and that was huge. i got encouraged, but i also got to encourage. adults are funny in that they are big kids too (at least the ones that come to camp). some of them frustrate me and some i want to sit at their feet and learn. a few instances this summer changed me completely: i told the adults every week during adult gathering to be ready to listen to the Lord this week. as much as we emphasize the fact that this week is for the kids, i dont want them to lose sight that God can change their lives too. and let me tell you, adults were changed this summer. some came to know the Lord for the first time, others were reminded of who God is, and others got to help lead a child to Christ for the first time. i was told by the Lord to never limit what He can do in my own life, even in my old age.

but the time i did get to spend with kids was phenomenal. i got to teach archery all summer with a little bit of soccer in between. and in those moments i got to build relationships with kids. one relationship that i got to build was with a kid named hunter. hunter was a very...let me see...defiant kid. and in archery, being defiant can be....a little dangerous. well all week long i made it my goal to love and encourage this child. sometimes i had to use tough love, and others it was just being someone to listen to him. i actually told him one day, "Hunter. You frustrate me so bad." he just laughed and we continued in our conversation. well i could tell that God was doing something in this child's life and i knew that this kid was going to make a decision for the Lord. so during invitation on Thursday i prayed harder for hunter than i had all week. and i was positive that he was going to come down and speak with someone. but he didnt. i even hung out on stage afterwards, which normally doesnt happen, just to be available for him to come and talk to me, but he didnt come. so i was bummed out, but as i prayed backstage for the night and everything, someone called me out to the front. twenty minutes had passed since worship ended and i wondered who could possibly need me then because church group time was well underway, but when i stepped out i saw hunter with his church group leader standing there. she told me that hunter didnt want to speak with anyone but me. and so we began to talk. i asked hunter what he wanted to talk about. he simply told me that he didnt want to leave. and through many questions asked, he felt more loved there at camp than any other place he had been. and in the midst of that i was reminded of the verse in Deuteronomy 31:6 where the Lord says,

"Be strong and courageous....for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”

we talked about how even though we leave people we love and how people always fail us, there is one person who will never leave us, and he actually promises us that. but you can only have that promise from God if you have a relationship with God. and so i asked him if he did. and through helping him understand that, the Lord took this child's life and made him a child of the King. hunter gave his life to Christ that night and i could tell he was made new. and boy was i reminded of the power of the Lord. how he doesnt need me, and how he will always do "more than we ever asked or imagined" like it says in Ephesians 3:20. and as i continue to think about hunter, i pray that the Lord will continue to grow this child.

another story i would love to share is the story of cole. cole, needless to say, was not my favorite camper all summer. he was in my church group one week, and let me tell you i have never seen so much bitterness and resentment in a child before. it broke me. he actually told me one day, "i didnt sign up for church camp and i hate it here." wow. i never thought i would hear those words at camp before. that happened on monday and from that point on i made it my goal to love this child. and that is our goal, or should be. to love the unloveable. that's what we are to God. He loves us when we totally deny Him. so i prayed daily for this kid. i have never been so burdened for someone before like i had been for cole. there were numerous occasions that i would be praying, broken on my knees in tears for this kid. and that's what i learned from cole. that it is ok to be broken. because God wants to be "our refuge and strength;our very help in time of need" (Psalm 46:1). me and cole hung out all week, and our relationship got better. i got to see him smile, which was phenomenal. actually one of the things i prayed for. but then cole left. and i dont know what's happening with cole right now, but what i do know is that he went back with some amazing group leaders that will continue to love on him, and in that i find comfort.

"The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit." Psalm 34:18

and then there is michael. michael is such a phenomenal kid. the one thing that i learned from michael was to never stop learning. if i had a dollar for every question this child asked me during the week of camp, i would probably be a millionaire (ok, that was an exaggeration, but you get the picture). michael was so curious about who the Lord is, about how to study scripture, and how to share his own faith. and i thought to myself "wow, i wish i had the passion for the Lord at his age." and i told him to never let that go. this child was so pumped up to learn about God, something that i wish i had every single day. and funny enough michael continued to encourage me in my own faith. one day we were talking about scripture and such and he asked me if i had read through the bible in its entirety. and i told him no. i was close but i had not done that. then he asked me why. i said because some of the books are boring (try reading Leviticus and 1 & 2 Chronicles without falling asleep), and then he looked at me and said "you need to read them. thats the next thing youre going to read." i said "yes, sir". it was funny, but its very humbling to be encouraged by a child. michael left, but thats not where our relationship ended. his mom actually contacted our team after they had left camp. she sent me a very encouraging email about michael. and he is still seeking after God. so good.

i could honestly tell you many more stories, but i dont have the time or the hand strength to keep typing....sorry.

but as i step away from the summer i really did learn how God provides. he is such a good and gracious God that we dont deserve to serve. but im so humbled that He chooses to use me daily. and i want to continue to be obedient in that. He will provide through me/us if we let Him. but we must make that choice.

so as this part of my journey closes, and another one opens i will never forget the people i came in contact with, the decisions that were made, and the life change that happened--in my life as well as others. and with that i will leave you with this. a passage of scripture that i held on to tightly this summer. it comes from Isaiah 12:

You will say in that day:"I will give thanks to you, O LORD,
for though you were angry with me,
your anger turned away,
that you might comfort me.

"Behold, God is my salvation;
I will trust, and will not be afraid;
for the LORD GOD
is my strength and my song,
and he has become my salvation."

With joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation. And you will say in that day:

"Give thanks to the LORD,
call upon his name,
make known his deeds among the peoples,
proclaim that his name is exalted.

"Sing praises to the LORD, for he has done gloriously;
let this be made known
in all the earth.
Shout, and sing for joy, O inhabitant of Zion,
for great in your
midst is the Holy One of Israel."

and here are some more of my favorite pictures from the summer:

one of my favorite church groups...all third graders.

me in the dunking booth @Skycroft...i got dunked 17 times in 5 minutes. womp womp.

preach it Captain Collin!!

walking the Appalachian Trail on a day off with my bros.

this is my Korean family from Sugarloaf!! they convinced me to eat some Korean food one night. it was actually pretty good. they were impressed i could use chopsticks....

OMC. enough said.

kids waiting to get into I Can't Wait...

this kid shot his arrow through a can. impressed? it was on accident....

dont have a ladder? just use me. works the same, right?

my last week of camp i got to coach soccer. this was one of my tracks.
a bunch of misfits if you ask me. :)

Saturday, July 9, 2011

cultural shock.

so im sitting here at a laundry mat writing this post....oh the life of a centrikid staffer.

this summer has been an interesting one. i am being broken and renewed daily. from week one i can even say that it has been neat to see God take my heart and adapt and change it in the course of the past 5 weeks.

a few thoughts on all of this:
-God has called me to teach.
-God has called me to preach.
*the two of these together may look differently than you would expect
-i have been falling more and more in love with the Word.
-my job is the best job ever.
-i am finding life long friends in the fellowship of the people im serving with.

words i have claimed for myself this summer:
love (1 John 4)
abide (John 15:5)
sacrifice (Isaiah 52)
strength (Isaiah 41:10)
slave (Philippians 1; 2 Timothy 2)

i know this is a bunch of random thoughts, but thats all i got for now :)

Saturday, June 18, 2011

love abounds.

**disclaimer: i wrote this post yesterday but didnt have internet until now to post. enjoy.

so im now sitting in the van with some of the most amazing people ever right now having great conversation and epic dance parties….ill talk about them in a little bit. but for now an update on camp:

the past two weeks have been phenomenal! God really showed off, and i am so humbled to even be His servant. i have learned a lot about myself over the past two weeks and i cant explain into words how thankful i am that Lord has done that in my life. i have been in the camp scene for about 5 years now and honestly it always brings about something new. as many of you know, i am preaching at camp now and all i can say is that i am so not worthy to be on that stage. i feel that someone else should be up there and not me. but the neat thing about God is that He has called us all to do something great for Him. for me it is to be on that stage, even though i don’t like it. stepping out of my boat into the unknown is tough for me, but i really feel like my heart is being changed and renewed daily. praise God for that.

there are so many stories i could share about kids and adults, but that would take forever, but one of my favorites thus far was actually the other night when i sat down outside the auditorium with a kid, didn’t know his name, but we started talking. he told me that he was waiting on some of his friends. i asked him why, and he said that they were talking about there relationships with Christ. he told me that it brought more joy to him to hear and know that God was changing his friends lives then any other thing that went on that week. we sat and prayed for them all by name (well he prayed and i cried) but it was such a sweet moment for me to encourage him and pray with him.

i also fell in love with my church group from FBC Paris this past week. i didn’t think that i could grow to love a group of people so much so fast. but i saw that these people loved the Lord, and by doing that they wanted to love on me. they prayed over me on wednesday night (by laying all those tiny, dirty hands on me—but it was still good) and i bawled. those voices calling out to God for me was amazing and i got a glimpse of what the Church is suppose to look like. i will always hold a place for that group of people in my heart. they are a part of my journey.

FBC Paris and me!

i guess to finish up i will talk about the staff a little bit. all i can say is that these people rock my face off! these people are so much fun and I know that i have lifelong friends from working with all of them! it has been so neat to watch God work in their lives and hear stories about how He is already changing them. im sure that i will post about these kids again soon, but for now I must get back to bonding time!

Eckord College is our next stop. camp starts in two days. let’s get it!!!

"My beloved friends, let us continue to love each other since love comes from God. Everyone who loves is born of God and experiences a relationship with God. The person who refuses to love doesn't know the first thing about God, because God is love—so you can't know him if you don't love. This is how God showed his love for us: God sent his only Son into the world so we might live through him. This is the kind of love we are talking about—not that we once upon a time loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to clear away our sins and the damage they've done to our relationship with God. My dear, dear friends, if God loved us like this, we certainly ought to love each other. No one has seen God, ever. But if we love one another, God dwells deeply within us, and his love becomes complete in us--perfect love!" 1 John 4:7-12 (MSG)

now to leave you with a few pictures:

all the little yellow babies after they won the captain's oar at OMC!!

one of my favorite pictures in the whole world. captures the essence of OMC!

my amazing team!!

best group of third graders ever. every single one of them had my heart!!

OH!! whose that?? just wanted to share this picture too. miss that beautiful face.

Sunday, June 12, 2011


i am so undeserving of everything that i have been given. as of recent i have been reminded who i am not and who He is. so needed.

i dont deserve the gift of life that i hold on to so tightly.

i dont deserve the friends that support and surround me.

i dont deserve such a loving family.

i dont deserve the honor and privilege of serving God through ministry at CentriKid Camps.

i dont deserve such an amazing girlfriend.

i dont deserve the provision that He so graciously gives me.

i am nothing without Him.

thank You for reminding me of who i am without You. i love You Lord.

Monday, May 23, 2011

a million miles to go.

well it has been quite some time since i have given this bad boy a look, and for that i apologize (not like its a necessary part of anyone's day or anything). but i will now try and put into words the amazing week that i have had as of recent...

on friday morning i drove on over to macon, ms to spend time with one of my people that holds a special place in my heart, Laura Register. her cousin haley was getting married and she invited me to come to the wedding with her a few months ago. i decided to go because im pretty sure that i was falling for this girl. anyways i get to the venue, in a not so populated area, and ended up having one of the best wedding weekends ever (this is outside of yours bro and sis). through the laughter, the smiles, and the pictures, this weekend turned out to be more than i ever expected. laura is now my girlfriend (im sure you were waiting for that part) and i couldnt be more blessed. one of my favorite parts about the weekend, which she blogged about as well, was when i decided to get up the morning of the wedding and walk around the lake and pray. i found out later that laura was praying on the other side of the lake at the same time. she is a special girl, and i am so glad that she is captivated by her Maker and she wants to spend time with Him!

well after an amazing weekend at the wedding we head back to clinton, ms to finish up my weekend with my family in jackson. now i dont have any biological family, but the people that i have grown to love there are my family. saturday night after the wedding we headed to a braves baseball game and had an amazing night laughing with @touchdownmom @jacketchin @mohawkarmbandkid and @jackedupbraid7! (i know this isnt twitter, but me and laura have decided to make twitter names for people and tag them in tweets. you'd be surprised how many are real--you should try it sometime) it was a wonderfully great night for baseball and i am so glad that she enjoys it just as much as i do!!

the next day i actually had one of the saddest days ive had in a long time. i had to say goodbye to the most amazing church family as well as some amazing co-workers. i am leaving behind an amazing season of growth in my life, but the beauty of it all is that i get to come back in august and start back right where i left off. i will have a new job and everything, but i will be around the same awesomely loving people that hold a place in my heart.

after we said our goodbyes to clinton, ms we headed due east to the beautiful city of birmingham. my grandparents live there and i figured i would stop in with my amazing awesome girlfriend and say hello. we had a great time listening to stories, talking about Jesus, and watching awesome movies! the best part, i think, is when they tried to embarrass me by telling laura stories about my childhood, but the ironic thing is that i have already told her most of the stories anyway(at least the good ones).

well after an amazing lunch with the gp's on tuesday, we headed south to the wonderful town of brewton, al....this section gets its own paragraph....

back in february, laura and i had the wonderful opportunity to serve the Lord at a DNOW in brewton, al. we met these folks at camp and knew that the Lord would bless us with more time with them, but we were so unaware of the relationships that would be formed. we went back this past week for two days and stayed with wonderful Winton family. Randy is the youth pastor at the church and he and his wife, Rachel, have 4 amazing boys, Caleb, Joshua, Noah, and Jonah. i just loved the presence of the Lord with that family. we laughed and played, talked and prayed. the times we had were amazing and i cant wait to go back. as we pulled out of the driveway on wednesday night, with all of them waving goodbye in the driveway, i thought to myself how much i want my family to be like theirs. Randy and Rachel have an amazing godly relationship, and you can see the love of God in everything they say and do. and the boys, well they are being brought up in a godly home. their family prayed together before bed, and prayed together before they left for the day. such a beautiful picture of the family and how God set it up to be. im so blessed to know this family and i cant wait to see them again. i know that laura and i have a place in brewton and it definitely has a place in us.

well the next few days we traveled back to decatur so i could go to my doctors appointment and left on thursday night to head to powder springs where laura is from. we moved nonstop the entire last week, but its a week that i never want to forget. i grew so much in my relationship with laura and i cant wait to see the journey that the Lord is going to take us on. we have a "million miles to go" and im ready for the adventure ahead.

"Your life is a journey you must travel with a deep consciousness of God..." 1 Peter 1:18 (MSG)
and my God will go and i will follow. no matter where i end up. He is my guide.