Our church began a new sermon series this weekend. It is entitled Dare to Dream. I based it off of Michael Slaughter’s book by the same name. The book is about creating a God-sized mission statement for your life.
Chapter One is based upon Jacob’s dream in Genesis. I preached from that text not too long ago. So, I used another text to begin the series–Amos. Of course, I intend to have fun when I preach. Whether everyone else does the same is up to them. And I think most of them were able to a little bit.
This week’s sermon is entitled “Dare to Get Out of the Church.” Have a listen and let me know what you think.
A few weeks ago something great happened to one of the Fletcher Five. Brittani got her first job. We were all excited for her and proud that she has since taken her responsibility seriously.
The best part for her came about two weeks later. Yes, that first paycheck brought all kinds of smiles.
Then another first happened. This one was even more impressive, at least to this dad. Sometimes I don’t get to see everything that happens in church on Sunday mornings. That’s most true with our church’s tech crew; most of them are youth. They control everything from a balcony. It’s become common practice during the offering for them to let it rain cash from the skies during offering. They pick an unsuspecting usher, usually the younger one, and drop their offering into the plate from their place in the balcony.
Well, two weeks ago, Brittani dropped her offering into the plate. This time, however, it wasn’t a few dollars her parents gave her. It wasn’t some change she found around the house. What she dropped from the balcony was her first tithe.
During lunch that Sunday she told me how excited she was to be able to do that. You better believe I asked her to take up this week’s offering and share that little story. She worried it might come across as bragging, but I encouraged to tell it anyways. People are going to think whatever they think. What I hoped they would hear was her excitement.
My initial thought was, “A child shall lead them…” And my hope was that maybe we could learn to give with excitement.
I heard it’s important to understand that any picture you put on the Internet has the capability of being there forever. Yes, we need to understand that any photo can be seen, shared, downloaded, re-seen or even mutated into the Internet’s next great meme. On one side, that is a caution to our young friends who are so quick to get their phones out to capture every moronic scene from last night’s escapade with friends. Potential bosses can easily find out what they really want to know about you. Of course, in a few years you might have some uncomfortable ‘splainin to do when your kids come across some of those pics, too.
Then again, there are somethings you truly want to live forever online. Like this picture.
I hope the Internet gets its worldwide hands on it and lets it fill every cloud there is and travel through every packet that gets delivered to any computer, ever. That seems like a lofty aspiration, but stranger things have happened. We’ve all done a Google search or two that brought up things that seemed a bit of a stretch. Maybe someone will search Galveston, or beaches or maybe even island ringtones.
That last one sounds silly, I know. But if they do search that maybe, just maybe they’ll come across a picture of a guy hugging one of his little sisters on the beach. Now, they may not know that it was Christmas and 32 degrees outside. Of course, they probably wouldn’t have any idea how much this picture means to the guy with the funny earmuffs now that she is gone. Or that it’s been exactly two weeks since her death and he has cried every day.
But they’ll have seen it. And I bet they’ll at least know these two people meant something to each other.
Yes, I hope this picture lives on the Internet forever because that’s how long I will remember it.
I love you, Diana. Forever.
Diana Lane, 25, of Galveston, passed away Monday, June 30, 2014. She was born September 25, 1988 in Galveston to Darrell and Deborah Sue Lane. Diana proudly graduated from Ball High School with the Class of 2007 and worked at Yaga’s. A fun loving free spirit, she enjoyed being outdoors, including fishing, BBQ’s, and time spent at the beach. Diana also cherished spending quality time with her nephews and nieces, whom she called her princesses. She was a strongly willed, motivated young woman who liked to get her way. She was our “Princess Diana.” She will live on through her family and great friends.
Diana was preceded in death by her father, Darrell Lane, and grandfather, Joe Faggard.
She is survived by her fiancé, William Travis Haynes and his children, Chyanne and Travis; her mother, Deborah Sue Lane; grandmother, Bobbie Sue Faggard, of High Island; sisters, Margaret, Misty Sue Ambrosio and Jose Perez, and Briana Soto and husband, Jesus; brothers, John Fletcher and wife, Gloria, and Grady Lane; nieces and nephews: Brandon, Brittani, Ashlei, Ange-le, Nathan, Angelina, and Alyanna; great niece, Harmony; loving great aunts, Gloria Whelton and Lilla McCutchen; and numerous other family members and friends.