The boys removed my stiches last week – it was a fun time and all went well.

I’m 3 weeks, rehabbing my shoulder. I start to see some good progress, then something will happen that sets it back.  The human body is a finicky thing. Very thankful for the prospect of having both arms back. 

Things I still can’t do:

Crack the ice tray.
Squeeze hug my girls.
Sleep in any position but back.
Make coffee.
Dry myself in less than 5 minutes.
Drive (sort of).

So cool to meet Philip & Jan Yancy last week in Kiev.

First world problems. I get it. I’m able to type now with both hands, arms resting on the desk. This helps me get to work on a daunting list. We have a lot of events in the works, outreaches, worship events, leadership meetings. I’ve also got 2 rather large papers to be written looming. 

Walking around the local cemetery the other day.  It’s a place I go to when I need to feel rooted in what matters, reality. 
‘Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.’ Soren Kierkegaard

If you told me last year this time I’d be reading books on leadership and absolutely loving it – I would think you were crazy.  I’ve leared away from the topic, believing it to be a category of learning reserved for corporate american.  When considering ‘Christian’ leadership, my gut feelings were negative mostly, that the church had only been negatively effected by western concepts of success and organizational strategies.. so why read any of that stuff?

Last night Club 180 youth, all but 2-3 professing born again followers of Jesus, the rest on a journey of discovery. We stayed home, allowing Dima & Lena to embrace larger role – they do a great job creating space for the Holy Spirit.

I couldn’t have been more wrong. I’ve been reading about personal formation, as a leader. I’ve so needed this. Healthy, sustainable rhythms, still growing into these. Leading not only from example, but exemplifying love, elevating those around me, believing in and entrusting those to their giftedness, allowing failure (in my self in others) but maintaining a learning posture.

Our new Lighthouse sign – looks amazing at night, pictures coming soon!  Thank you eKreative for your generosity in donating it!
Cute Claire loves her little kitchen and refuses to use plastic pretend food –

I’ve just finished Haley Barton’s book on building discerning communities. Her ministry goes into toxic or ‘stuck’ leadership groups and helps them navigate from dictatorship style models to safe, open, vulnerable groups that learn together how to wait on the Spirit, listen, and discern together the very real will of God.  If God is to be leading our work, mission, or churches, surely God has both desires and wisdom for us – but we need to create the space for the Spirit to actually be heard.  That takes intentionality, work, willingness especially on the part of the leader to be ‘indifferent’ in the results – to be open fully to the resulting group decisions to look vastly different than the leaders wishes – that this is what it means to lead – not to get your own way, or have folks follow you ‘blindly’, but to influence everyone to move from darkness (ignorance) to light (revelation) – as a group, if there’s any meaning to be had in missional community or family.

I need to post some of my writings, I don’t know why I blog here about stuff I’ve already written on. 

Anyway. We have Collins off in Minsk recording with Peter and the crew as we attempt to finish the LIT worship album before end of year. We’re sponsoring some other events in Minsk as well in a couple of week before LIT – some dude from Hillsong coming and teaching some classes for area worship leaders.  I’m more excited about stuff outside of the local churches myself, but I have to remember it’s where most of the family of Christ hangs out. Why is that? Why do we spend so much time with believers – aren’t we all called to make new disciples?  Who didn’t get the memo?

Working on a new widows care online system for World Challenge, that we will prototype in Eastern Europe.  Excited we’ll have team members from Ukraine, Belarus and our first from Russia next month together for prayer and planning – as well as developing the ministry more together. God is with us in this, our budget has been doubled for 2019!  More hands and feet to those waiting for the love of God.

This weekend a couple of cool things.  One is a dinner we are hosting impromptu with some friends, some just asking beginning questions about meaning, life, purpose and I think holy ‘anxiety’ working in their hearts. Then, Sunday we are visiting a church in Kiev, the pastor is a motorcycle driving, tatoo’d up guy that is in charge of the Cities tatoo fest which attracts +10k each year.  During our kiev trip we are looking at 2 potential houses to rent, finally found a couple that look really good for hosting some evenings soon.