Sunday, October 16, 2011

The Next Big Thing... 16Oct

16Oct Chris in Lasalle, Michigan

I'm up in the midwest sharing with our partners, doing some teaching and connecting with family and friends.
Had a great time with the Saints of the Toldeo Vineyard... always a warm and wonderful group.
As I prepared for this morning's time, I've been really struck by the Lord in this area of Worship lately. I know that I have made the past mistake of reducing 'worship' to a fantastic time of music and demonstration of my gratitude to God in a church service.
I am totally convinced that somehow the 'next big thing' in the Church is NOT going to be a really cool song or adding lights and smoke to our church services...
It's going to be all about
<>the simplicity of worship: 12 stones, uncut by human hands to signify our regular lives as THE altar acceptable to God
<>the whole idea of 'song-service is worship' is going to be seriously re-adjusted to become a small percentage of what we KNOW to be our worship
<>worship is going to a total-life-before-God, everything-I-do, everything-we-do, 24/7 experience-the-Presence and God-is-in-the-HOUSE thing
<>worship is going to always be aware that the earth is FULL of the Glory of God, while at the same time we pray for the Glory of God to fill the darkness (and the hearts trapped in darkness)and we look forward to the full consumation of His Presence totally dispelling the darkness

The Next Big Thing... come Holy Spirit!!! Make it happen!!
Church... what do we have to do differently? How can our Praxis line up with the Presence?

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Bajmission Baja and Beyond Update 17-18 Oct in MI

Those who are in SE Michigan... Chris is going to be in the Monroe area next week, and will be hosting a "Bajmission Baja and Beyond Update"
Panera Bread
393 N Telegraph Rd in Monroe, MI

Mon and Tues 17 and 18 Oct
6pm to 9pm

the advert:
"come see/hear/taste/touch a bit of what Latin American missionaries Chris and Lori have been up to!"

(taste and touch... hmmmm)
C'mon down!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Welcome to the House of Blessing in San Vicente

Great news, friends! The LORD opened up an opportunity for us to rent a house in San Vicente for us to stay in when we are down there, and there's room for us to conduct ministry out of the location...
It's an older 30ftx20ft adobe-stucco house with the usual rural Mexican set-up. It does have a flush toilet, a single-tap shower and outside sink. There are a few electrical outlets. It was formerly a bunk-house for a Mexican Bible school that closed over a decade ago, and there are 3 little rooms with built-in bunks. It's a bit drafty, and we'll be fixing it up over the next few months... The house is close to the Carretera TransPeninsular Mex 1, and is in a 'Rancho' with a number of neighbors who all attend various churches in the Village.

But hey! We have a place!

Our Hearts Leap Coming Over the Hill

Just to show you the sight that makes our hearts leap for joy as we come out of the last mountain range and... there before us... San Vicente... our second home...


Training future worship musicians 4Oct

4Oct Chris here, just back from San Vicente. See the pic... that's one of my star students, working hard to master the guitar.

This past 7-day trip, played over 20 hours of guitar.
Nope, wasn't just goofing off. That was a 20-hour investment in a group of future worship musicians, and leading congregational worship with the help of these newbies.

The Nazarene church of San Vicente has a congregation of about 150 people, and it's growing because people are coming to Jesus through the dedicated evangelism of the church-folk. The pastor asked me to help him with his new problem: needs a number of up-and-coming worship musicians to lead on Sundays, during the week, at the various conferences held, and the home meetings. He's asked me to teach them guitar and disciple them in leading people into the Presence of God. He's also asked me to 'infiltrate' the worship band and help them out.


I've been holding 'classes and consultations' out at the picnic tables outside. This past week, 12 hours of 'open class' for the students. One guy came right form the fields, and was so dusty, I didn't recognize him at first!!
Then the rehearsals for Sunday night. Teaching new ways to pull a worship band together, all be on the same page, and then 'lift-off' with the congregation in the Presence of the Lord.

Sunday night, it was the first time I'd led worship in Latin America in over 5 years. I was so excited during tune-up, I could hardly contain the joy.
We started Sunday out with my 8 students and I leading a wonderful old Mexican worship song "Hay Una Fuente En Mi" (There's a Fountain In Me) together... wonderful! These students have only been playing guitar now for 3 months, and they got to be a part of leading. (After service, they were estatic; one student was crying for joy when she described it all to me...)

THEN we had the emmense joy of blasting off for a 45-minute worship set with a fantastic-sounding guitar (thank you, annonymous friend!), a totally singing-loudly-at-the-top-of-the-lungs congregation, and God showing up in power and presence.

Awesome can't even describe it.

I'm in awe at how God is teaching and energizing these students. Glad my guitar callouses are nice and tough in this season... fingers sore but very happy...

For the High Praise of God in ALL the earth!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Glocalization in San Vicente

GLOCALIZATION; The new term for the car-crash of the local realities of the developed world (cell phones, technology) with the Global realities (lack of basic services, economic stratifications) in the Developing world.

Chris sitting here in San Vicente.

As usual, I'm trying to make sense of it all

Watched a street-vendor yesterday in San Vicente cooking her food-for-sale on a camping-styled woodfire and pan (like the picture), but talking loudly on her cell phone...

Lori working with one of her 'sewing women' in a house with a dirt floor and one electrical outlet (an extension cord), producing lovely (and glittery) purses for sale...

Sitting here on a high-speed wireless internet connection doing this Blog, but I had to shower last night via a 'sink-tap', since all the showers here are not working at the Church...

Running water for bathing/washing, but had to drive over and get my water bottle filled from the filtered water (safe to drink, says the monthly government letter posted next to the plant)...

Amazed by the stunning beauty of this village... well, then a truck barrels down the dirt road and the resulting cloud makes it hard to breathe for a few minutes...

Watching the trucks of tomatoes going north from the fields, to be sold at the markets for $1 for 2 lbs... and seeing the bus of field workers pull up, all dusty beyond recognition, a long, hot day in the sun picking... the resturuant next to the 'bus stop' adverts satelite TV and a Wifi internet for customers...

Seeing how hard life really is for the people of the Village...

simplicity, complexity, glocalization

More later... before the power browns out for the afternoon...