Confessions: “La, la, la … I can’t hear you”

“For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned.”
Romans 12:3

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When we moved back to Las Vegas, the plan was to plant a church in 2-3 years. I’m not even sure if the pastor I was under thought this was a reality for me, or if he thought I had potential, and would be a good guy to have around irregardless.  There were, however, many voices of concern that were made.

A good pastor friend of mine stood out. He said that he didn’t believe a guy should plant a church until he was 35 years old. His main point centered around the missional concept that a church planter will attract people on a ten year age radius. This being the case, 35 is the ideal planting age for a pastor becuase he will attract young professionals and young families, and those two groups will attract others. Not only do I agree with this radius, but it was what I used as a reason for a 26 year old to plant a church in Las Vegas. This would allow us to hit a radius that we are barely hitting, a young/hip church that could reach an unreached group in Vegas: the young/hip 18-35 year old demographic.

While I do not think I should have been questioning whether the concept was right, I do think it would have behooved me to ask whether I had the capacity and character to swim against the grain and be the man that reaches that demographic. Or to say it differently, instead of questioning the validity of the concepty, I should have questioned whether it applied to me or not. The reason I couldn’t do that:

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(note: the picture is the answer. other note: the bear is holding its hands over its ears.)

I would even clarify that our hearts are broken for Las Vegas. Especially for the young adults. It kills me that most churches are geared towards young families almost exclusively. Not that these are bad, or that we even have enough churches geared that way (especially with only 5-8% of our city going to an evangelical church on Sundays). It just that there are hardly any venues for young adults in Las Vegas to hear about Jesus in a context that is relevant to them. This was my heart for wanting to be the 26 year-old pastor who planted a church to reach that demographic.

But the question arises when a young guy is unwilling to ask himself the hard questions about his ability or preparedness to accomplish the task: who’s vision is he carrying out; his, or God’s?

May we all, always be willing to ask this. That God may get his glory, and we might be empowered by the Holy Spirit to do the impossible: build His Kingdom.

 

matt

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Now playing: Derek Webb – I Hate Everything (But You)
via FoxyTunes

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National Porn Sunday

Its not what you think. Although I am sure when I look at the blog in the next few days I will see all sorts perverted search terms that brought people to this blog because of the title. No instead I am writing about National Porn Sunday, which is put on by xxxchurch.com. I am sure most of you out there have heard of these guys but if you haven’t they minister to porn stars and those suffering with pornography addictions.  Well this weekend was what they have designated “National Porn Sunday.”  It is intended that churches will talk about this highly taboo subject and raise awareness of just how devastating it has become amongst the body.   They also put out an awesome accountability software that is free! Every guy who is honest with himself and serious about having integrity with his online usage should have it on their computers.

xxxchurch also has a podcast put out and a 30 days to purity program for those in need. I highlight all of this because porn is the elephant in the room as they put it. No one talks about it no one wants to deal with it but there it remains, destroying ministries and relationships. The stats are overwhelming and if you want to read further just go check out their website. All of this to say that if you are losing a battle to pornography get help. Find someone you can talk to and people who will give you the grace and accountability you need to walk in the light. This really is the last area any guy should try and be prideful.

If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. (1 John 1: 6-8)