The Orchard Blog

WEDNESDAY NIGHT by orchardblog
November 30, 2004, 12:04 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

What are you doing Wednesday night?

Hopefully you’ll be joining us for our First Wednesday Gathering happening at 7PM. You WILL NOT want to miss out on this evening. It’s going to be all about getting our hearts geared up for this Christmas season.

We’ve got some fun things up our sleeves planned and most importantly, this is going to be a refreshing time of worship and focus towards our Creator.

Childcare will be available for nursery & preschool. If you have kids who fall into the “elementary” age range – bring them with you!! This will be a great FAMILY time together.

See you Wednesday!

identity, self-image and self-worth by orchardblog
November 27, 2004, 3:08 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

the last few days i’ve been mulling over the concept of identity.

have you ever noticed that society, not as a whole, but generally speaking, seems to have their identity wrapped around what they do “right?” if for some reason what they do right is questioned by a boss, spouse, friend, or even an acquaintance…watch out…the defenses come up! why?

i would suggest to you that while our strengths may play a role in helping us do things right, sometimes we wrap our worth around what we do “right.” therefore, we feel that if someone questions what we do “right”, then they are invariably questioning our worth.

in my opinion, i do believe that we should play to our strengths when it comes to fulfilling a task. i also think our strengths can become our greatest weakness. what do i mean?

i mean, if we are not careful, if we find our self-worth or identity in our strengths (or what we do right), if that becomes questioned at some point in life, then we feel inadequate, even belittled.

this is why, as a christ-follower, our worth isn’t found in our strengths. our worth is found in his strengths. while i do want to forge ahead in life and allow my strengths to help me, i don’t want to have my identity revolved around it.

my suggestion to you is to establish your worth in the identity of christ! for it is there that you will find the acceptance and worth of god for your life!

Happy Thanksgiving! by orchardblog
November 23, 2004, 6:16 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Wow. Thanksgiving is already here. Is it just me or does it seem like the older I get the faster the years go by?? Kind of scary…

Today I was thinking of a few things that I am extremely thankful for. Even in the midst of the difficulty of losing my dad (our pastor) and severely missing his physical presence in my life, I am extremely thankful for his life and the legacy that he has left us. (Dad, if you’re reading this from Heaven, shoot me an email, ok?)

I’m also thankful for you – our church community. Just typing the words, “I’m thankful for…” doesn’t even begin to give voice to how I really feel about it. I can only imagine where I would be right now if it wasn’t for the support and love that has covered me and my entire family the past few weeks.

I’m thankful for what God is doing at The Orchard. I am still amazed at the stories that are being told every week by those of you who are a part of our church family. They never ever get old.

I’m proud. I’m proud of what God is doing. I’m proud to be a part of an authentic worship community who is fulfilling its mission of leading people into a growing relationship with Jesus Christ.

I could go on and on – but now it’s your turn.

What are you thankful for?

PS – On behalf of our staff team and my family, we want to wish you a very Happy Thanksgiving! See you Sunday!!

Opportunities in Children’s Ministry by orchardblog
November 20, 2004, 1:14 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Our Children’s Ministry Volunteer Team shares the message of Jesus Christ with children in a fun, energetic and creative environment. If you have a heart for children and enjoy watching their faith grow, we have a place for you within our ministry!

0-2 years old
This opportunity ranges from:
• Actively interacting and holding babies to help them feel comfortable and loved during their time at OVCC. -0r-
• Actively interacting and teaching a small group of children the Bible lesson of the week through stories, crafts and other activities.

3-4 years old
Our Preschool Teachers and helpers impact children through fun, interactive curriculum that includes Bible stories, age-appropriate activities and creative teaching tools. Friendships with other team members can be created while impacting the children and their families. If you have a passion for God and a love for children, this is the opportunity for you!

5-6 years old
Because of the growth in our children’s ministry, we are making plans to open a classroom for 5 and 6 year olds. Teachers and helpers are needed during 2nd service to assist in the new “Fruit of the Spirit” classroom opening February ’05. (Lesson and snack provided!)

7-12 years old
Assist as children sing, shout, play and learn how to be Christ-followers. If desired, opportunities to give announcements, lead in worship, and assisting with teaching, are available.

First Wednesday
This is an opportunity to help with the child care during a special service on the First Wednesday of each month. This will allow parents to experience a worship gathering that is much needed in our lives.

Mrs. Kathryn is in need of an adult to come into the office each week to assist with the ’behind-the-scenes’ details that must happen each week to prepare for the weekends. Projects include preparing children’s birthday cards, working with the computer, data entry, classroom preparation and much more.

Creative arts
Creatively communicate the Bible through the use of dramas, puppets, creative set design and media production.

Contact Kathryn Egly for more information or stop by the children’s ministry table in the lobby during service on 11.20.04 or 11.27. 04.

Doing it well… by orchardblog
November 19, 2004, 1:03 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

“If it falls to your lot to be a street sweeper, sweep streets like Michelangelo painted pictures, like Shakespeare wrote poetry, like Beethoven composed music; sweep streets so well that all the host of heaven and earth will have to pause and say, ‘Here lived a great sweeper, who swept his job well.'”
– Martin Luther King Jr.

Orange Tuesday by orchardblog
November 16, 2004, 10:19 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

Good Tuesday to you! (It’s orange day here @ the Orchard)

The Orchard blogosphere has been quiet the past few days. Thanks for your patience.

Speaking of patience… Our Apprentice series continues here @ the Orchard. This past weekend I talked about patience. Don’t forget, if you missed it, you can download it here.

Question for YOU: Who have you thought about inviting to the Orchard this week?

If you haven’t answered that by the end of this sentence, you need to take 2 minutes after reading this and think about those “Orchard Valley Verns” in your life (your co-worker, neighbor, friend, etc…) who need to discover a relationship with Jesus Christ.

REMEMBER: 93% of unchurched people would come to church if asked, but only 16% have been asked!

Let’s change that.

Connect with those in your life who don’t know God. Join them in their journey. Invite them to the Orchard where they can find a “safe” environment to ask questions, seek answers and ultimately connect with God in a personal and life-changing way.

See you Sunday!

McLaren Quote on Scripture by orchardblog
November 11, 2004, 1:09 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

“It’s no surprise…that biblical Christians have thrived when we’ve used the Bible with the goal of becoming good people who, because we follow Jesus, do good works in God’s good world.

And we have languished and wandered when we have used the Bible as a weapon to threaten others, as a tool to indimidate others and prove them wrong, as a shortcut to being know-it-alls who believe the Bible gives us all the answers, as a defense of the status quo – none of these being the use Paul the apostle wanted Timothy, to make of the Scriptures.”

Brian McLaren
A Generous Orthodoxy, p. 165

The Fast and the Furious by orchardblog
November 8, 2004, 5:15 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Yesterday, driving home after our second football game with some of the men from the Orchard, I began thinking about kindness and the message from that morning.

I contemplated the actions of kindness when our “feelings” don’t align with the “fuzzy’s” of being kind. How many of us come home from a busy and stressful day and the last thing we want is to “ooze” the kindness of God–or any type of kindness for that matter.

I would suggest that many of us get caught in the whirlwind of life and we negate any type of sensitivity to those around us. We become self-absorbed, self-important, and just down right UN-kind!

The other day I came home from a busy and stressful day, I walked into the house and my wife, as usual, is ready to give me a big hug. Honestly, I wasn’t wanting a hug at the moment. I was so absorbed with that day (with the “cares of life” as Jesus said — Mark 5) that I didn’t want to be kind. I remember, stopping my negative thoughts and just saying to Kathryn, “I’m sorry, give me 10 minutes to just re-align my thoughts. I don’t want you to think I am mad at you…so give me 10 minutes.”

During those 10 minutes I was able to re-align my thoughts and heart to be kind, loving, tender, and sensitive to those around me.

What does this mean for The Orchard Community, and those who are regular readers of this blog? It means, that many of us can be so absorbed into our day, going 100 mph, that we forget to allow God to work through us.

Sometimes we just need to stop, and just readjust how we are dealing with a situation. Remember, growing in kindness is not a destination, but a process.

PHPlist Help? by orchardblog
November 6, 2004, 11:58 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

If anyone out there knows how to setup a PHPlist using an SQL database, please HELP me! 🙂

Email me here.


Tonight…. First Wednesday 7PM by orchardblog
November 3, 2004, 2:49 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

I am really looking forward to tonight – just taking a break in the middle of my week to recalibrate my life through worship and communion. Pretty good way for all of us as a church community to gather and start out this new month. We have so much to be thankful for.

My personal challenge to myself: What am I bringing tonight? After all, worship is not just about “what can I get?” from GOD – but worship involves me bringing my heart, my gifts – and ultimately, my ALL to Him.

Let’s “bring” tonight. Let’s walk away with LESS of our “stuff” and MORE of HIS “stuff”. (His stuff is WAY better than ours – trust me!)

See you tonight…