Encounter with a girl named Jenny…

Yesterday I had an opportunity to take some extended time to be with God and spend time in the Word.  It was a cool morning, so I spent some time with Colossians and a warm cup of coffee.  In the afternoon, it became a beautiful sunny day so I made my way through downtown Dallas to a local establishment where I got a chance to meet a girl named Jenny.  Well, I shouldn’t say girl really, Jenny is 32 years old… and quite different from anyone else I met yesterday.  Jenny has had a hard life… she is wrinkled far more than you might expect from years outdoors in the hot sun.  Jenny is overweight, significantly bigger than most girls her age.  Last year, she witnessed the death of her best friend of 5 years.  Life for Jenny has not been an easy one recently.

But something about Jenny amazed me.  I don’t think she noticed me staring, because I think there were others that were staring at her too.  But there was something about this 32 year old, heavyset girl that made me wonder at God’s unique creation.

If you haven’t guessed by now… something is very different about Jenny.  You see, Jenny weighs about ten thousand pounds.  Jenny eats between two hundred and three hundred pounds of food a day.  God really had an imagination when he made her.

Jenny is the African Elephant at the Dallas Zoo.  As I watched her yesterday, I had to chuckle about how God made her.  So huge, and yet so capable.  I watched as she took an entire bunch of bananas from her trainer in her trunk and gobbled them up (peels and all) in one bite.  How she played with a giant ball, using her trunk to fling it into the air, and how she used her huge ears like giant fans.  Trumpeting through her snout and spraying water like a firehose.

If God doesn’t seem creative to you this week, or big enough to tackle your toughest problems… I suggest spending more time with the elephants.

Texas Church IT Roundtable Recap

February 23rd saw our first “Texas sized” church IT roundtable.  From my perspective it was a great success.  We had over 50 people involved in learning, sharing, and networking with other church IT leaders and key vendors.  Whenever you can get that many IT guys to show up in one room, I feel like it is an automatic “win” for the Kingdom.

The best part of my job is getting to network and learn from other people much smarter than me.  Yesterday I was blessed by a room full of those kind of people, so I walked away challenged and encouraged to take new ground in the ministry of IT in the local church.  It was great to have so many subject matter experts from Dell, Apple, and others sitting in and listening and providing their expertise.

My hope is that everyone who was there walked away with at least one takeaway that will impact their ministry.  Maybe more, but at least one.  And my other hope is that everyone left better connected with friends who serve in similar positions of ministry.  Once you catch the value of community, you are better equipped for the ministry that God has called you to.

One person asked me “how we continue to discussions that happened today on a regular basis”.  To that question there is an easy answer.  There is an IRC chat room that is almost always filled with Church IT guys from around the country.  It has been a great resource for me personally to ask questions, and occasionally be available to help others with an issue they are having.  You can connected to the chat room (#citrt) on IRC freenode, or by simply clicking this link which will launch the chat in a browser.  http://www.citrt.org/chat/

Lots of good conversations yesterday.  Thankful for how God is allowing us to use technology for the Kingdom.  Even more encouraged to see how so many folks are using their giftedness.

As I shared yesterday morning from Philippians 1:3-6,  “I thank my God every time I remember you. In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”


Excited about what God is doing…

Church IT Jesus Freaks are a fun bunch.  We had a great time at the Dallas Church IT open lunch today.  15 folks from church and para-church organizations throughout Dallas joined together to talk about the future of our ministry together.  We are tentatively setting September as the next “full-day round table” and each person was challenged to seek out another ministry in the Dallas area and bring them along.  It was fun to hear all of the great technical discussions going on at the table… from social networking, virtualization, SAN solutions, web platforms, ChMS solutions, wireless… it was all good stuff.

The best things about my job are getting to interact with people who love Jesus and getting to share Jesus with those who don’t know Him yet.  Today I got to hang out with people who are geeks like me AND love Jesus.  That’s greatness. 

If you are part of a Dallas area ministry and want to get involved, drop us a line at it@watermark.org or check out the forum at www.texasministrytech.com