this saturday is get on the bus!
several vineyard people gather at 10am and pack grocery bags, load up the bus and head for a low income housing estate. We divide up in pairs and go door to door offering a free gift and offering prayer. Interesting responses:
You came at just the right time i had no food
I need to ask God for forgiveness
Can you pray for us we are on our way to the hospital my wife is in labor
My lift fell yesterday, I thought if i ride it down i'll break my legs...so i jumped...yes, I'd like prayer
This Monday I enter rehab will you pray for me
I've been asked to take greater responsibility at work, I don't think I can do the job...pray for me
We have no food, no job, I've been laid off work, I'm raising my grandson...pray for us
I'm house bound and needed the food...will you pray for me that I can be strong enough to leave my home
I've just moved into the area...I need help and assistance
Who are you? Oh you're the fish people! We still have our gold fish from last summer. We reply, it's a miracle!
we are gearing up to raise a ton of candy...I have wheel barrels placed in stratigic locations around the Vineyard...people will bring their candy, place in wheel barrels we move the candy to a storage area...we'll save over $1000...
funfest 4 is just around the corner October 27th it's an evening where thousands of people come to the vineyard from our community...we call it a safe place for families on Halloween...people respond to fun, safe, and families...so far we will have:
30 ft climbing wall
bouncy castle, giantslide, tunnels
k12 a craft artist group from dayton
a 22 seater hay ride wagon
one game the kidz love is toys in straw...we bust 25 bales of hay and hide toys the kidz jump in look for the toys
black light bus
and 3000 hotdogs cooked over the 3hrs...
i attempted to book the wiener mobile from Oscar Meier...for the 3000 hot dogs that will be cooked in 3 hours.
blow up bouncy castles, tunnels, giant slides etc.
and our kidz team performance
walk on...been thinking about this song for a while...leaving baggage behind... journey forward...every day is a new day...fresh opportunities...Mercy is new every morning...
U2 Lyrics - Walk On
And love is not the easy thing
The only baggage you can bring...
And love is not the easy thing...
The only baggage you can bring
Is all that you can't leave behind
And if the darkness is to keep us apart
And if the daylight feels like it's a long way off
And if your glass heart should crack
And for a second you turn back
Oh no, be strong
Walk on, walk on
What you got, they can't steal it
No they can't even feel it
Walk on, walk on
Stay safe tonight...
You're packing a suitcase for a place none of us has been
A place that has to be believed to be seen
You could have flown away
A singing bird in an open cage
Who will only fly, only fly for freedom
Walk on, walk on
What you got they can't deny it
Can't sell it or buy it
Walk on, walk on
Stay safe tonight
And I know it aches
And your heart it breaks
And you can only take so much
Walk on, walk on
Home...hard to know what it is if you never had one
Home...I can't say where it is but I know I'm going home
That's where the heart is
I know it aches
How your heart it breaks
And you can only take so much
Walk on, walk on
Leave it behind
You've got to leave it behind
All that you fashion
All that you make
All that you build
All that you break
All that you measure
All that you steal
All this you can leave behind
All that you reason
All that you sense
All that you speak
All you dress up
All that you scheme...
good to see doug back in action his father passed away a couple of weeks ago...lessons learned and passed on...good vibe, great message and an encouragement to all...
kindness to go went well over 200 bags went with vineyard people out to different places...stories will be coming in...i took two bags to red lobster for a team meeting...the waitress commented...'wow, i never get presents...thanks!'...fun, easy and shares the value of outward focus in a practical meaningful way to the recipient...and to the vineyard gathered
Caribou coffee had their first free coffee customer purchase...I went in to meet a couple of rambo evangelist type people who are just beginning to be wowed by the simple acts of kindness approach...we had a good meeting...they have a passion for the biker community and have been reaching out
I walk to counter and say, 'I'll purchase a x$ gift card please'...i receive card and hand back and say, 'I'll pay for the next people's coffee until the card runs out'...the girl nods ok. I say, 'i'll be sitting over there with the bald guy'...as I sit down and begin to have a talk i notice people going to counter, paying for coffee...confused I go to counter and ask, 'what's up i want to pay for eveyones coffee?' confused girl commented...'i thought you just wanted to pay for the bald guys coffee only...he must drink a lot of coffee'...I clarify and say, 'nope everyone is to receive a free drink'..she says 'wow'...manager comes over...'what are you doing?'...'I'm doing good today and purchasing people's coffee' ... manager asks, 'what are you going to say to the people who thank you?'...i say, 'you are welcome...we are just doing good today'...she is happy...and smiles and walks away...
during the hour two Chinese guys are stunned one throws a fiver to me...i toss back and say, 'it's on us'... he says, 'where is the camera?', several other people are stunned, over whelmed etc...one lady asks, 'who are you guys?'... i comment, 'we are from the vineyard down the street just doing good today'...she responds, 'o you're that pretty good church'...I laugh and comment, 'yep that's us'...an interesting time...
today i go in for coffee, and the staff were buzzing about the event...they loved the looks on people's faces...Steve Sjogren calls it the tilt with head tilted sidways and eyes rolling from one side to another...
big weekend...single parent and grandparent's raising kids brunch...valet car wash, kidz zone, professional photographs, massage, and resource connection...should be a good day...
this weekend is kindness to go...hundreds of outreach items will be taken to local shops, resturants, fire departments, police stations, er rooms etc...we raise the outward value on such weekends...ripple effect out into the community...teens packed the outreach stuff on Wed...they had stories from a recent outreach downtown near University of Dayton...the teens are doing a mini outreach tonight as they head out on a serve weekend away...
new series starts...HDliving...
recently on a first saturday outreach, a team went to the nursing home we visit each month, one of the team members walked into a room and a man said, 'i knew you'd come' ...seems that the day before in desperation he called out to God asking Him to send someone to his bedside...a great conversation followed...after a few minutes talking about his faith, he began to weep...the team member was able to pray for the man and communicate the good news...
another team member went to the nursing home several months ago and was so moved that she and her daughter began to go each week to read to a lady who can't see, speak or move, they have been reading the bible to her for weeks...the non-seeing ladies daughter happened to pop by during the first saturday visit and handed our team member a check made out to the vineyard just to say thanks...
I always wonder about such encounters...is there something that begins to happen when we choose to go and be the good news?... I believe so, there is a promise that if we go, then He will be with us...Him being with us starts an amazing unfolding connection to His purpose and a link toward the people He wants to reach...
I've been thinking about this verse for a few weeks...and praying for the Vineyard using the outline
I pray that you will be active in sharing your faith,
you will have a full understanding,
of everything we have in Christ Jesus.
churches all over the place contact me asking for help, coaching, and encouragement...it continues to be a great experience talking to pastors, leaders, who want to shift from inwardness to outwardness...
having lived in Scotland for 18 years helped to develop a broad worldview...to step out of my little world into His huge world....
this weekend a local church is participating in one of our areas largest popcorn festivals...a few weeks back they asked if we would serve them by providing some resources...we liked the idea and have helped them pull off their outreach...
will we receive any mention for our effort to further the good news, maybe, maybe not...it it matters not... the good news is all about connecting to our generation in our community...how many churches will it take to reach our city?...lots...more than one that's for sure...so, if we are equipping others to play in the game...it's accomplishing our goal...to reach thousands of people in Dayton area in a personal way...
Here is an email we received...
Is Steve Bowen in today? I feel like calling him, but it can wait until tomorrow.
I have a friend who lives in New York City email me today to tell me she's going to church Monday night. (It's when that church meets.) She sent me the website and it seems to be a pretty good church. (ha.) I'm just so excited that she's interested, I've been praying for about a year for her to go back to church. (She hasn't gone since she was in college.) So I tell her about our guys going to NYC handing out breakfast bars and you won't believe this - she was one of the people who received a granola bar. She said that was the coolest thing. No strings attached. Wow, I'm about to start tearing up. I'm just horribly overwhelmed. I pray for my friend in NYC, Steve and everyone goes there and through them, she receives a granola bar. I don't know exactly if that's anything really, but I'm sure it was just another laying of God touching her heart. You know?
this is how the principle of sowing and reaping works..
John 4:35 Do you not say, 'Four months more and then the harvest'? I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest. 36 Even now the reaper draws his wages, even now he harvests the crop for eternal life, so that the sower and the reaper may be glad together. 37 Thus the saying 'One sows and another reaps' is true. 38 I sent you to reap what you have not worked for. Others have done the hard work, and you have reaped the benefits of their labor."
great buzz week this week Wednesday the Vineyard Staff went to 4 schools to deliver the back packs to the teachers to give to their students...We delivered the packs, and prayed for the school year...and gave the teachers a doz of mixed Krispy Kreeme Donuts...Big buzz...
First Saturday Outreach went well with a bumper crop of teens joining in the fun...we went to the area around University of Dayton...It was like herding cats...the adults steered the kids as they did the outreach...amazing how a young person opens a connection toward people receiving kindness in action
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