Sing my Song

I have a friend and we used to talk about our “songs” all of the time. We used to say we had to sing our “songs” to each other so we wouldn’t forget them. I need to hear my song sung back to me right now – seems like I can remember the lyrics, but the tune and passion around it seem long gone. Sorry to sound like an artist for a second, but one of my goals for 2010 is to find my song again.

mjd

A Return to the Blogosphere?

I’m quite sure I have allowed this blog to lapse into anonymity, but I’ve got to get back to writing for me. It’s my outlet, it makes me think, it makes me publish what’s going on inside me and process it all.

Work for the past 10 months has been brutal. I’ve worked in an environment always short on time and always short on funding trying to put together high quality e-learning – and we’ve done it. It hasn’t been easy, it’s required a lot of sleepless nights, tough conversations, and sacrifice, but looking back at the increased quality of our products, I’m proud of what we’ve done. Today, I got a glimmer of hope. I’m not looking forward to traveling again, but the time for a new customer has come. Here’s to an adventure, another life change, and all of the ups and downs that come with it!

mjd

Defining Value

value

In recent months, I’ve become overwhelmed with value. A few definitions:

*to consider with respect to worth, excellence, usefulness, or importance
*to regard or esteem highly

I’ve always been someone who was focused on purpose. I think finding yours and living it is key, but over and above your purpose, you have value. You were designed with values, to be valued, and with certain things that you value in others. Here are a few questions that are racking my brain over and over right now:

1. What is it that I value?
2. What value (worth/usefulness) do I bring to the table in my friendships/work/ministry?
3. Who values (esteems/regards) me?

Music from Oasis Church

There’s some good stuff going on at Oasis with our musicians starting to cut some of their own music. I hope I get to share more of it in the future as it becomes available, but here are two recorded by Joel Buckner. You can buy a copy of his demo CD off his Myspace page. For my Pine Bluff folks, he’s going to be there in July…

Psalm 9

I Will Live

Set List: 05/31/09

Another powerful week in our video venue at Oasis Church, the Pulse Cafe. Even with rotating new musicians every week, the confidence level and team dynamics are improving every week – I hope we’re able to transfer this to our campus launch in Murfreesboro this fall! Without further ado, here’s this week’s set list in participation with Fred McKinnon’s Sunday Setlists.

Again I Say Rejoice

We use the Promise Keeper’s arrangement, but this is Israel…

Moving Forward

Still a crazy powerful song. I love when the voices of the worshipers are so loud you can hear them over the team…

How Great Is Our God

We’ve all heard the song before, so this video is the “story behind the song.”

Two final thoughts:
1. I’ve got to quit stripping my voice half way through the service – I couldn’t hear myself well and instead of pushing for more monitor, I damaged my voice – stupid. Janelle flippin covered for me and I can’t tell you how much I appreciated it!
2. It was AMAZING to lead worship with my wife beside me again. It’s been too long. We just hadn’t been able to line it up to play together. I love leading with her… and no one can read me like she can. Plus, she’s pretty hot when she’s rocking out on the guitar…

mjd

Don’t Be Afraid of the Quiet (Pt 2)

One of the worst dangers of giving someone a mic, is the fact that they may use it… Far too many of us who lead worship are afraid to let the air get a little thin for just a moment – don’t let people stand in the quiet too long, they may get distracted. The truth is, we need far more quiet times in our corporate worship. No “leader” singing or talking, just a group of 400 people standing together at one moment reflecting on the greatness of their God.

In the training field, we use deliberate pauses to let content soak into our students head, to allow them to form questions and relate new content to previous life experience. We’ve found that the level of learning increases when people have time to process what you’re talking about…

When you lead this weekend, don’t be afraid of the quiet. Allow some room for God to do his thing, for minds to be opened, for people to be just a little uncomfortable as they realize how the song and the message were put into action in their past and will be fulfilled in their future…

Don’t Be Afraid of the Quiet (Pt 1)

My wife recently bought me a copy of Fahrenheit 451 – one of my favorite books. It was written 50 years ago, but it captures the current state of our society better than you can possibly imagine. The people are bombarded with noise from the time they wake up, till the time they go to bed – advertisements in every store, on the sidewalks, in the subway. The moment they walk in their homes, they turn on their interactive wall TVs, not engaging with others in their home – but engaging with virtual worlds. Sound familiar?

Chels and I have been pretty intentional about watching less TV since we moved into the house. Our house has been much quieter, and to be honest – I’m loving it. The only thing you have in the silence – both the silence from TV and computer/FB, etc. – is your own thoughts. It can be extremely scary to realize you’re not as deep as you thought – that your relationships with your family and your God are not nearly as deep as you thought.

I hope you’ll take a little time to enjoy the quiet – there’s nothing to be afraid of…

A New Home

DSCF8525a
I can’t even begin to express the amazing month we’ve had. We were able to purchase a home in the Bellvue area of Nashville. Not just any house, 3,500 s/f. We’ve prayed many times for a place that could sustain the kind of ministry we’re called to. We believe our home is to be a place for the broken. I grew up with parents who always had people in. I grew up with a foster sister, and at one point, both of her cousins lived with us. We took in people walking on the side of the interstate – we took in college kids in transition – we took in runaways in the middle of the night – it’s the Daniel family way.

This house is GINORMOUS. That means really big for 1 couple and 2 dogs. It’s 4 BRs and we have a gigantic bonus room over our garage. We’ve already had more people here in the past week than we’ve had in our apartment in the past year! The house hasn’t been lived in for over a year, so there’s lots of work to be done. We got this house for just over half of what the homes in this neighborhood are worth!!! It’s such a BLESSING! More to come soon…

mjd

Set List: 04/19/09

We’re running two simultaneous sets in our Worship Center and also in the Pulse Cafe. The Cafe is only running during the 2nd service and in a brilliant move by our church leadership, it’s being used to develop the Greeting, Ushering, Campus Pastor, Tech Team, and Worship Team for the new campus. I led 2 of the songs in the cafe this week, and we ran all 3 services – I’m trying to get my voice back in to shape – it’s tough.

This week’s set list was:
All Around (Israel)

Today is the Day (Lincoln Brewster)

The Wonderful Cross (Smitty)

The teams are doing great, and we’re getting the opportunity to engage and mature musicians that we wouldn’t with only one band. We have about 60 female vocalists right now, so getting them through the rotation is tough. It’s working out great – still ironing out some timing issues, but it’s getting better every week. For the 2nd service this past weekend there were about 120 in the Pulse Cafe during worship – GOOD TIMES!