Archives For September 2009

Where’s the Sting?

September 23, 2009

No, I’m not talking about the Police minus Gordon Sumner, I’m talking about my recent experience of getting rid of the wasps on my front porch. Check it out (hang in there or fast forward for the action sequence):

Where’s The Sting? from Cole Phillips on Vimeo.

cloudy_with_a_chance_of_meatballsThis weekend I took the fam to see the new movie, “Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs.” Now, when I first saw the previews for this one, I wasn’t really excited about it because I figured it was just another kids movie cranked out to make a few bucks. I also wasn’t too pumped about the idea of that much food raining from the sky. It sounded kind of gross. Not to mention my concern about what would happen to all the water if it was raining meatballs. But, it completely blew away my expectations. It was one of the best movies I’ve seen recently. I’m continually amazed at how incredible they’re doing 3D now. And this one had some beautiful animation. It also was filled with lots of laugh-out-loud moments and quotable lines. But what really stood out was the way it brought out some important truths/lessons without being in-your-face preachy. Here are the Top Ten Life Lessons from CWACOM…

  • You can accomplish anything if you stick with it and give it your best
  • The value and importance of creativity
  • Be yourself and people will love you for who you are, if they love you at all
  • Too much of anything is not good, especially if it’s junk food. Moderation is the key
  • Don’t take shortcuts to success
  • God don’t make no junk
  • Sometimes you’re working to try and please everyone to earn the love of someone you will never please
  • If you just keep piling up your trash, eventually, you’re going to have a huge problem
  • Sometimes the people who love you don’t have the words to communicate how they really feel, but love you just the same
  • Monkeys don’t have anything worthwhile on their minds

It’s all in there along with Mr. T and Doogie Howser, so how can you go wrong?

I’m Phlippin’ Out

September 10, 2009

I’m totally Phlippin’ Out over our newest series that starts this Sunday, September 13 at the PAC at 10:30am called Phlip This House. The Sunday after Labor Day is one of the biggest days of the year at TCC. It’s actually the day of the year that we launched 5 years ago. I expect that we’ll have a PACed house as we all invite our friends to come and get connected.

I’m starting this new series that is a walk through the book of Philippians, all about how to experience real joy, something that is much needed in our life and times. This is also the series where we’re pioneering a new way of doing Connection Groups, and I’m excited about getting back into groups after a little down-time.

If your life feels like it’s a fixer-upper, don’t miss The Connection Church over the next 4 weeks.

In It, Not of It

September 8, 2009

Here’s one of my favorite poems by John Fischer that deals with something that everyone who wants to follow Christ and be salt and light in the world should check out:

“In it, not of it,” the statement was made
As Christian One faced the world, much afraid.
“In it, not of it,” the call was made clear,
But Christian One got something stuck in his ear.
“Not in it, or of it” was the thing that he heard.
And knowing the world was painfully absurd,
He welcomed the safety of pious retreat,
And went to the potluck for something to eat.

Now Christian Two, he knew what to do,
He’d show those fundies a thing or two!
How will the world ever give Christ a try
If we don’t get in there and identify?
So “In it, and of it,” he said in his car,
As he pulled in and stopped at a popular bar.
“I’ll tell them the truth as soon as I’m able
To get myself out from under this table.”

Now along comes Christian Three jogging for Jesus,
In witnessing sweats made of four matching pieces.
His earphones are playing a hot Christian tune
About how the Lord is coming back soon.
“Not in it, but of it,” he turns down the hill
And stops in for a bite at the Agape Grill.
Like the gold on the chain of his “God Loves You” bracelet,
He can have the world without having to face it.

While way up in heaven they lament these conditions
That come from changing a few propositions.
“Not in it, or of it,” Christian One thought.
But who is the world will know that he’s not?
“In it, and of it,” thought Christian Two.
But who in the world will know that he knew?
“Not in it, but of it,” thought Christian Three.
But who in the world watches Christian TV?
And Jesus turns to Gabriel, shaking His head.
” ‘In it, not of it,’ wasn’t that what I said?”

I’ve been all three at different times in my life. Which one do you identify with?

You have to sing this post title to the tune of the Subway jingle. And by great, I’m not talking about TCC being great (though I believe it is), I’m talking about how great our God is who thought up TCC and who has made it all possible, at least the parts that are good.

Sunday was the celebration of the 5th Birthday of The Connection Church. Actually, we launched on September 12, 2004 with 145 people at our first weekly service. I laugh when I think back to that time when I was so clueless about the experiences and friendships God had in store for me and so many others who’ve come along on this journey, so far. I can honestly say that if I had the chance to do it over again, I’d do it in a heartbeat.

On Sunday, we got together to celebrate the difference that God has made in each of our lives through this family of faith. We met at Texas Old Town in a building that they built this last year. Thanks to Rene Rodriguez and Shep West, the signs clearly pointed the way from the PAC to the party. In a venue that was smaller than our usual room, the atmosphere was electric. We actually had a major jump in attendance that I know is an affirmation of good things to come in the months ahead. We also saw some guests and some faces we hadn’t seen in a while. The band was in the groove and led us right to the throne of God. The community was in sync with one passionate purpose. And the brisket was without a doubt the very best I’ve ever tasted thanks to Andy Rhoades and Eric Oineon. While I’m giving props (of which I’m leaving tons of people out) I also want to mention Trey and Jen for coordinating the lunch details. And it was topped off with a personalized TCC logo cake made by Frances Geiger with a little guy that looked a little like Charlie Brown, but I’m pretty sure was me due to the tie-dye psychadelic shirt. That was a loving tribute that was a little scary that she nailed my fashion sense so spot on.

Today, I feel like we are still just now getting started and seeing glimpses of the future that God has planned for TCC and this region. I’m so thankful for the connectors at TCC! Let’s ramp it up and make the connection!