The Performing Church

The other day, I was stopped in my tracks by a statement. It went something like this: “It’s hard for musicians to detach themselves from performance when Sunday morning is the only time they aren’t performing.”

Something inside me couldn’t reconcile myself to that thought. Does music always have to be a performance, barring use in church where we say we’re leading instead? After I had time to mull it over, I decided that the answer is no. Here are two examples. Continue reading

Revival Doesn’t Have to be Huge

I’d like to shrink a term that is most often used with huge implications. We, the church, tend to say we want revival, and by that we mean that we want throngs of people repenting visibly, making it clear that “God is at work.”

Revival, however, the really, truly revival, is more teensy weensy. It’s not necessarily immediately visible, nor does it have to happen in a tent or a stadium.

It happens when complacency becomes commitment. When even one person is saved, a revival has happened. When one Christian lives his or her faith, revival is here.

It’s not huge. It’s not showy. It won’t capture the world’s attention and turn the TV cameras. Because revival, ultimately, is a matter of the heart.

And when you think about it, that’s even bigger than the way we like to use the word.

Free Book! Free Book!

A Purple and Gold Afghan and other stories coverYou might remember that I announced a little e-book short story collection of mine a little while back. I’m quite pleased to announce that A Purple and Gold Afghan and other stories is now free on the Amazon Kindle store from now through Sunday!

A Purple and Gold Afghan is a collection of three short stories that relate the story of Joseph, a lonely young man who’s just begun seminary. When he finds a beautiful afghan on his dorm room bed and attempts to track down its maker, Joseph runs headlong into a series of events that might just lead to something called… love.

One reviewer said this: “These stories are the epitome of ‘short and sweet.’ Simple and endearing, they are told from the perspective of an innocent, insecure young man as he takes his first bumbling steps into the realm of love. This is romance as it should be—not idealized and contrived, but gentle and unsure.”

You don’t need a Kindle to read it. Amazon has free reader software for PC and Mac, so you have no excuses. Grab my book and enjoy!

Feel free to leave a review or spread the word to your friends. I’d appreciate it. :-)

Heartaches and Headaches

This morning I discovered this piece that I wrote from a dark place back in August. I’d been suffering from a splitting headache all day, and then some emotional stuff happened and caused heartache into the bargain. The two words mixed in my mind and I rambled this out on digital paper, trying to console myself. Writing the truth to myself helped. Maybe you needed to hear it, too. Continue reading

Announcing A Purple and Gold Afghan and other stories

I may have mentioned a screenplay I’m working on called Bellwether. The story centers around a couple that meets unexpected resistance to adopting a little girl. Early last year, I finished the third draft of the script and sent it to some test readers. One of my readers wondered how the main characters met, and after some thought, I came up with a short story to answer that question.

A Purple and Gold Afghan and other stories cover

I’ve since followed that story with two more, taking the characters from their first meeting to the beginning of courtship. The stories have been fun to write, and those who have read them tell me they have enjoyed the stories and that I’ve done a good job capturing the feelings surrounding the first steps into romance.

I was never quite sure what I was going to do with the stories. But then I self-published a book. In the midst of all that, I realized that the Kindle platform was perfect for a collection of short stories, so I began working on getting them ready for publication. About a month later, right about now, the book is done!

So, allow me to share the description from Amazon, and then I’ll leave you to check it out.

About the last thing shy and lonely Joseph wanted to do was live on campus at seminary. But when he finds a beautiful afghan on his dorm room bed and attempts to track down its maker, Joseph runs headlong into a series of events that might just lead to something called… love.

Charming, whimsical, and poignantly funny, A Purple and Gold Afghan and other stories is a delightful collection that will tug at your heartstrings.

A Purple and Gold Afghan and other stories is available right now on the Kindle store for 99¢. I hope you enjoy it!

Month of the Novel Season 2

I’ve talked before on this blog about the web series Month of the Novel, which I produced and directed in 2011. This year, it’s coming back for a second season!

Month of the Novel Season 2 logo

The writers have done an amazing job with the show, and it’s gone from six episodes to ten. We’ve really raised the bar on almost every aspect of the series. I can’t wait to shoot it in March, then get to work finishing it for the November 1 premier.

For Season 2, we’re running an Indiegogo project to raise funds for production. If you can contribute, that’d be fantastic. I believe that any contribution is worth a thank-you, so even $1 contributors will have their names listed in the credits. And if you aren’t able to contribute to the funding, maybe you could share Month of the Novel with your friends. Whatever you do, I hope you watch and enjoy the series when it hits in November!

The Order They Come Out

In typical guy fashion, I don’t have any particular algorithm for choosing which shirt I wear each day. It’s generally a matter of which one is on top. Because I don’t pay attention to the order when putting them away, I don’t usually know which shirt will be worn on which day throughout the week. And to top it all off, I get dressed in the pitch dark every morning, so I rarely know exactly what I have on until I get to a room with some light.

Interestingly, this haphazard, serendipitous approach to what I wear has been used to remind me of people or events that I’ve sometimes needed to remember particularly that day. Continue reading

It’s the Thought That Counts… But People Aren’t Mind Readers

When something doesn’t quite come across the way it was meant, we like to pull out that old comforting phrase, “It’s the thought that counts.” And largely, that’s the truth. People will generally accept the thought over the actuality if they know your heart was in the right place.

There’s just one problem. If nobody knows what you were thinking, they can’t count the thought. That’s something I’ve been learning as I’ve recently entered a season of courtship. I’ve had to realize that, now more than ever, someone else needs to know what I’m thinking. Continue reading