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Archive for December, 2007

The FRIDAY before Christmas

Realizing that I’ve already lost half of my "Friday Crowd" (referring to those who read me with their morning cup of coffee :) ) – this cup of Starbucks Espresso Blend is for you! (Hear the big slluuuuuuuurrppp – and the "aaahhhh" that follows!) Here’s a few things you REALLY need to know about this weekend:

  • Everything’s ready for "The Divine" – I’ve made my list, checked it twice – I’M PUMPED ABOUT SUNDAY!!
  • You DON’T want to miss the beginning of the service (even if it means getting here a little early to drop off the kidz :) ).
  • We WILL have Bible Fellowship Groups this Weekend at their regular times.
  • We WILL have 252 Sunday School in the Kidz Place.
  • We WILL NOT have Kidz Konnection Sunday – Kidz Konnection will resume on January 6th!
  • The ROC Cafe’ WILL be open Sunday morning from 7am to 10:45 pm (and my mocha WILL be hot!)
  • Is it too late to remind you that this is the perfect weekend to invite your friends?
  • I’ll be sending out an "EBlast" reminder for Sunday – forward it to your friends.
  • LIves WILL be changed Sunday morning at hyde park church!

Note about next week: I’ll probably be really sporadic with my posting – I’m taking some days off and I’m gonna try to do that "unconnected" that I might be "connected" to those i’m taking off WITH. So after Sunday you probably won’t hear from me on WholeHearted until Friday.

Let me close by saying that it’s easy to take people for granted – love with ALL of your might. This post by Perry Noble is a must read reminder about Christmas. Looking forward to Sunday!!

One Special “Year End Service”

State_of_the_congregation_address_tNext Sunday, for the 1st time since November 2003 hyde park will meet in ONE BIG SERVICE…


How can we all fit in one? (glad that you asked :))

Traditionally, the last Sunday of the year is a "travel day" for many of our attendees. Rather than have an "off-day" in 3 services, we’re just gonna bring everyone together for ONE Huge Service.

  • This is a great chance to see people you don’t normally get to see because you attend a different service?
  • There will be NO BIBLE FELLOWSHIP GROUPS – we will gather together for the worship experience only.
  • There will also be No KIDZ KONNECTION.
  • A big, encouraging worship experience that will celebrate ’07 and end on a high note and prepare us to explore the exciting move of God among us in 2008.

You ready? Don’t miss it! And "Father, show us Your glory!".

Sunday is one of “those days”

Logo_a_fullscreen_2There are days when we just know (and anticipate) the priviledge of being a witness to those who do not ordinarily come to church – this Sunday is one of those days.

How will you make a difference – what will you do? Parking? Greeeting? Singing? Loving? Many of you have a ministry you’ve been a part of this year (one of the above mentioned). How about getting up with the leader of that ministry and asking what you can do to take this special day over the top?!?

We want our guest to feel so welcome this week that they will want to attend our special "Year End Service" next Sunday (12/30) at 10AM. Wouldn’t it be awesome if that 10am service was standing room-only?

Describe This Sunday!!!!!


Are you ready for Sunday? Question is: do you REALLY know what’s happening Sunday so you can tell others about it?

I explained to our congregation Sunday (just so we were clear…) that "back in the day" we used to do special productions at Christmas, Easter (and any other time we could come up with an excuse to be busy) for the purpose of reaching out to those we were trying to reach. Problem was that "those we were trying to reach" didn’t come – other church people came. Heck, if you’ll be honest, many of you didn’t even come!

Statistics say that people are not "anti-church" – they are just unconnected. Recent surveys also tell us that they would be open to attending church if somebody would just invite them (and they didn’t have to go by themselves).

With these facts in mind, we made the decision that rather than doing 3 or 4 special programs per year that wear out our most valuable assets (that would be YOU :)) that we would do 52 special programs per year, on Sunday morning, putting a higher emphasis on the weekly service (after all, every Sunday is someone’s 1st Sunday at hyde park). And then, on a few select Sunday’s (Christmas, Easter, Mother’s Day and maybe a few more) we will go "OVER THE TOP", taking our excellence to new levels for the purpose of reaching…


"The Divine" is a full-service presentation that will feature great music, Creative elements, touching songs, a story – and a creative presentation of the Gospel that will bring Christmas to new heights.  This is an outstanding opportunity to invite your family and friends who do not ordinarily go to church…I promise they will hear the Gospel in a unique way! (By the way–BE EARLY NEXT SUNDAY!!! Trust me, you do NOT want to miss the beginning of this service!!!)

(PS – Did you get a "Backwindow Christmas Sticker" on Sunday? If you missed it – we’ve got stickers to advertise our Christmas times while you’re driving. There has never been an easier way to share – While you sit at a busy intersection God can use you to remind the person behind you what times our services are THIS SUNDAY! Simple. There are still a few left, come by the office and get yours.


Sunday afternoon, 3:12 pm

All i can say is, WOW! I don’t usually write my Sunday post until in the evening (and I will probably finish this tonite) but I wanted to write about this morning while I’m "reeling" from it. Truth is, I’m still processing all that happened this morning…

Today was one of the top worship experiences (as a speaker) that I’ve ever been a part of. The music – really, really great. Steven did an unbelievable job leading worship today (and that song, "Strange Way to Save the World" was priceless!). The outpouring of love shown in our congregation as people in all 3 services, admitting their shortcoming, faults, and the overall need for JESUS asked Him to flood their lives was flooring.

And speaking of that outpouring of love, in all 3 services I felt prompted in the moment to end totally different than we normally do – I asked people needing HOPE in "A" situation to lift their hands and keep them up. The large majority of the congregation lifted their hands (proving to each other that we all struggle and are SO in need of the personal touch of JESUS in our lives). I then asked all people, those with hands raised and without to touch someone near them and to call out to JESUS on that person’s behalf…and God showed up.

Not that there is any doubt that He would. He’s amazing like that. I believe that many lives were impacted today. I, for one, would say that i have been DEEPLY moved by God’s power all day long.

If that wasn’t awesome enough…

…the 11:11 service (which was really big today!) saw about 8 or 9 people pray to receive JESUS as forgiver of their sin and entered into relationship with Him -THANK YOU, LORD!

8:45 pm – FUNNIEST THING TODAY :) : in the 11:11 Service I was talking about Hope and asked if there was anyone in the crowd with a child named "hope" -  as i was scanning the crowd i thought that i saw a lady with her hand raised – i noted where she was in my mind and scanned the rest of the crowd to see if there was anyone else. When I looked back at her I said "you have a child named ‘Hope’?" (at the same time I said it I recognized WHO she was) to which I immediately said to "the lady", "YOU DO NOT!!!" She replied, "yes, i do, in my classroom (she’s a teacher). What was so funny about it was that the woman was my wife. (the place exploded in laughter when they realized it was my wife i was talking to :) ). As I’ve mentioned, today was our anniversary – it almost seemed that I was getting a MAJOR anniversary surprise!!