Category Archives: Vineyard Movement

A Black Coffee Day

coffeeIf you look, you can tell my mood by what I drink or what shoes I have on. For example, when I’m feeling tired, wore out or otherwise miserable, I drink my coffee black. If I’m doing great or if I want to relax, then I drink some tea or coffee with cream and sugar.

Today was a black coffee day.

It begin with my truck not starting (dead battery) and continued through out the day. Not because it was a “bad” so to speak – it’s just that I’m tired. I kept waking up last night coughing up crap and basically not sleeping. Sigh. It seems that our entire team (well, the US team at least) is still having health issues. If you think of us, please drop a line upwards for the Man to heal our bodies.

On the good side, I had a wonderful Bible study last night with the men from Sweet. We just started reading through the book of Galatians – talk about returning at the right moment (last night was chapter one). Our “usual” M.O. is to read a chapter out loud and then discuss it. Sometimes (like last night) this discussion takes off into other areas as there are a few of us who enjoy a lively “discussion”.

[@more@]In the past we have only studied ‘historical’ books (parts of Samuel and Kings as well as Acts). This time we are studying Paul – which I think will prove to be interesting.

One of the guys had a commentary by Martin Luther… which was “interesting” to say the least. In case you don’t know, I’m not a fan of Luther (or Calvin for that matter). Yeah, Luther did some great things for God, but he also had some strange and, in my view, incorrect views (but that’s another topic).

The main point of this is that the guy who had the commentary made the comment that I better bring a commentary on Galatians next week – someone to balance out Luther’s views. Rising to the challenge, I ordered N.T. Wrights commentary today (it should be in on Thursday). I’m looking forward to seeing what Wright has to say as he is one of the best Kingdom Theologians out there today.

I also have a New Testament Theology book by George Ladd that I’m going to look at…. And I may have another commentary on Galatians from my Paul’s Letters class at LU. Hmm… I wonder were it would be?

Review: Idaho Green Expo

Downtown Boise was a mess this weekend!!  Not only was the Idaho Green Expo going on, but next door (literally) Beth Moore was hosting an event.  Not to be left out, the area between the two events was hosting it's own function – ie. a farmers market.

This led to a shortage of parking spaces, tons of exhaust flumes and a multitude of people. The later was welcome while the former items were despised…

Overall, this was the BEST conference or expo we've ever attended! News reports have stated that over 15,000 people went through the Expo – many of whom we got to talk too.  In fact, I believe we talked to more people and sold more items then ever before!  Shoot, we had to print more Re:From brochures Sunday morning as we ran out!

Here are few stories from the Expo:[@more@]

1) The Love Justice & LTTG combo worked great! I talked to one presenter who kinda understood the environment side of our ministry, but could understand how the human injustice part fit in. This opened the door for me to share the heart of God. It was a God moment!

2) The t-shirts were a great conversation starter – one guy even chased down M and asked him where he got the shirt. That led into a wonderful opportunity for M to share a bit about about God and what the church is doing.

3) We had a lot of people come up to the booth who had heard of the Vineyard, but didn't know anything about it. As such, we were able to answer their questions about the church and put them at ease about visiting. Lord knows how many coffee cards we gave out!!! Laughing

Coffee cards = small brochures about the Vineyard Boise with a free espresso coupon. Yeah – we have an espresso bar in the church. It is the Northwest after all! Laughing

The Kingdom of Heaven was advanced this weekend! 

Thanks for all your prayers!!!

Idaho Green Expo

If you read this and have time, please drop some prayers upwards with me and the LTTG/Love Justice team as we share our heart with folks at the Idaho Green Expo. While we will be advertizing the Vineyard Boise's 2008 Re:Form Conference, I'm praying for some God encoutners. Let His Kingdom Come!! =D

Oh – Please be praying for the ladies as they attend the Beth Moore conference this weekend. 

God bless

God Showed Up!!

We serve an Awesome Lord!! This weekend I had the pleasure to co-teach a prayer / ministry seminary designed to help folks live the Holy Spirit filled life Jesus promised us that we could live.

Co-teaching this class was quite a stretch for me – I mean, I know the information, but to teach it… that’s a different level… But it was good. No one threw any tomatoes, the pastor who was mentoring me on the class didn’t banish me as a heretic, and folks where still talking to me afterwards… By all counts – it was a good class. =)

grin * With that said, it did start a little rocky… The class was to start at 7 pm Friday evening – at 6:45, I received a call from the pastor informing me that he was suck at a middle school track meet (he’s a coach during the “day”) and would not be able to attend that night. Luckily, we had already planned for me to teach the first part of the seminary… however, I must admit that I was a pretty nervous starting everything off by myself… =/

That first evening, I gave my testimony as it pertained to walking in the Kingdom. Then I dived into an overview of the Kingdom of God: What is it? How does it apply to us?  The elements of Jesus’ ministry. The ministry style of Jesus. Being naturally supernatural.

The Set-Up:

Throughout the Gospels, Jesus only commanded us to do seven (7) things. Sounds simple enough…

  • Love God with all our being
  • Love one another
  • Heal the sick
  • Cleanse the lepers
  • Cast out demons
  • Raise the dead
  • Preach the good news

[@more@]At the end of the evening we practiced “doing the stuff” as Wimber used to say. Walking timidly, we asked the Spirit to come – and boy did He! God showed us some hurts and pains that people needed healed…

The next morning, we all gathered again (about 12 of us – including the pastor) for the next part of the class. To keep this post from getting too long, I will simply state that over the course of the next nine hours we covered the following topics:

  • The mind of Christ – an altered worldview
  • The gifts of the Holy Spirit
  • Common errors
  • Interpretive keys
  • Defining the gifts
  • The Gifts in action (Biblically and practically)
  • Emotional Healing
  • Divine Appointments
  • Power Encounters

The best part(s) of the whole weekend was Friday and Saturday evenings when we put into practice what we learned. We invited the Spirit to come and show us what He wanted to do. He gave us some direction – so pastor started praying for an attendee while I described what was happening as the pastor went through the Five Step Prayer Model.

Afterwards, we turned all the attendees lose to pray for one another.

This was the best part – equipping and teaching normal, everyday people that they can go out and do the same things Jesus did. The ministry is not reserved for those ‘spiritual’ people on TV or in big ministries. The work of the Kingdom is for everyone – no matter where you live or how old you are!

Five Step Prayer Model
  1. The Interview
    • The hear form the person being prayed for
    • Listen with love and compassion
  2. The Diagnostic Decision
    • What is God doing?
    • How does He want you to pray?
  3. The Prayer Selection
    • Physical
    • Emotional
    • Spiritual
  4. The Ministry Time
    • Do what the Father is doing at that time
    • Keep one ear tuned to 77.7 K-GOD
  5. The Post-Prayer Directions
    • Not counseling, just general counsel – Scripture reading, come back for more prayer if needed, ect

As I end this post, I want to say that God showed up in amazing ways this weekend. Tears and snot where flowing as the Lord worked on emotions, hearts and spirits. I will not mention specifics as they belong to the people whom God worked with and are not for me to tell, but I will say that there are some restored folks walking around – physical, emotional, and spiritual.

Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’? -Jesus

Green Living Seminar

An amazing evening! Wow… We had just over 50 people attend last night's Green Living Seminar – making it the second most attended LTTG class to dated (the first being the 2007 Wilderness Survival class).

The evening started with a brief introduction highlighting the fact that we can make a difference – both as an individual and as a community. Every little act of conservatism adds up and can change the world.  We just need to embrace change and rely on the Lord Almighty to work through us.

The speaker also made references to an article recently published in Delta's Sky magazine entitled "The Power of One". This article shares some numbers on how we can reduce waste and conserve our natural resources. Some of the figures include:

  • If the thermostats in every house in America were lowered 1 degree Fahrenheit during the winter, the nation would save 230 million barrels of crude oil—enough to fill an oil tanker 400 times. (That’s the amount of oil being imported into the United States from Iraq each year.)
  • If Delta’s 40 million SkyMiles members were to spend 1 minute less each day in the shower over their lifetimes, they would save 4 trillion gallons of waterthe total amount of snow and rain that falls over the entire lower 48 United States in a day.[@more@]
  • One out of every 3 pounds of the waste that Americans generate is just for packaging, which each year adds up to 77 million tons—enough to fill the Louisiana Superdome in New Orleans 37 times.
  • If every American collected 1 gallon of water once a week while waiting for the shower or bathwater to get hot (use it to water your houseplants!), the total saved would be 15.8 billion gallons of water a yearenough to fill the Reflecting Pool at the National Mall in Washington, D.C., 2,338 times.
  • Replacing just one 500-sheet roll of virgin toilet paper a year with one 500-sheet roll of 100 percent recycled paper in every American household would leave 424,000 trees standing16 times as many trees as in New York City’s Central Park.
  • If one 20-mile trip per week was cut out (by combining errands) for every registered vehicle in the United States, 145 million fewer tons of greenhouse gases would be released into the air each year. That’s equal to the annual carbon dioxide emissions from 36 coal-fired power plants.

After the introduction, we broke up into three classes to allow people to drill down into certain areas:

  • Energy savings at home / in your small businesses
  • Cleaning without poisoning yourself or the environment
  • Driving alternatives – gas efficiency/biodiesel/electric

I'm going to try to post some highlights from each of the three classes this week – so stay tuned.

After the classes where finished, we all returned to the main chapel to browse the tables of the classes we didn't get to attend (that whole "can't be in two places at one time deal").  What's amazing is that everyone returned!  I thought folks would spilt after their class finished, but they didn't – they came back and pick up some information and chatted a bit.

Overall it was a wonderful evening. Laughing

Many thanks to the Education Coordinator and all the volunteers who help advertised, set up, tear down and/or teach the classes. You guys ROCK!!!!

Animism or Traditional Religions

Last night as part of the DIA class I talked a bit about Animism – since I had the notes typed out, I figured I would share them with you all. Enjoy. Laughing
or Traditional Religions


“The term ‘animism’ comes from the Latin world anima, which means ‘soul’ or ‘breath’. As such it refers to that which empowers or gives life to something. It follows, then, that animism is the religion that sees the physical world as interpenetrated by spiritual forces – both personal and impersonal – to the extent that objects carry spiritual significance and events have spiritual causes”. – Dean C. Halverson, The Compact Guide to World Religions

Why understand animism? It is….

  • the form of religion to which people gravitate
  • popular because it infuses the sacred into a reality that has been emptied of anything spiritual by the scientific / evolutionary perspective
  • offers a way for people to deal with everyday problems

[@more@]The Ultimate / Immediate Division

  • Ultimate – who is God, what is humanity’s problem, what happens after death
  • Immediate – everyday issues such as illness, loss of job, find a mate, restore relationships

Different parts of Animism

  • Necrolatry (the worship of the dead)
    • reverence for a departed ancestor
    • fear that the departed with harm or haunt the living
  • Spirit Worship
    • The existence of personal spirits/demons as well as impersonal spiritual forces in nature (commonly called mana)
    • Shamanism
      • a shaman, priest or witch doctor who knows all the proper sacrifices and rituals designed to calm the spirits
    • Magic
      • rituals designed to control an impersonal spirit for good or bad
    • Fetishism
      • charms, amulets, or fetishes
  • Naturism
    • The personifications and worship of the forces of nature
    • Rituals tend to focus on fertility (both in agriculture and human reproduction
    • Totemism
      • the unity of the clan or people with a sacred plant or animal

Four characteristics as suggested by William Paton:

  1. The whole of life is pervaded with fear
  2. The absence of love and consolation from his religion
  3. There are no absolutes of morality
  4. The lack of relationship with God causes a fatalistic attitude since all the events of life are predetermined and controlled by nature or demons

Suggestions for Evangelism

  1. Be sensitive to the animist perspective
  2. Be aware of the influence of Secularistic thinking in our lives
  3. Find common ground
  4. Highlight the differences
  5. Model trust in God alone
  6. Be ready for God to work in mighty ways
  7. Turn their heart towards desiring a relationship with God
  8. Address their fears
  9. Be clear about who Christ is and who we are in Him
  10. Point out the deceptive nature of the spirits


Halverson, Dean C. The Compact Guide to World Religions. Bethany House Publishers; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA. 1996. pages 35-53

Olson, C. Gordon. What In The World Is God Doing? The Essentials of Global Missions: An Introductory Guide. Global Gospel Publishers; Ceder Knolls, NJ, USA. 2003. pages 183-186

Additional Resources:

Corduan, Winfried. Neighboring Faiths: A Christian Introduction to World Religions. InterVarsity Press; Downers Grove, Illinois, USA. 1998. pages 135-188

Sweet Bible Study

It's amazing how many rabbit trails you can find in Acts. What? You don't think there are rabbits in the Bible?  *sigh* Maybe so, but boy – we sure can find their trails….

You see last night was our weekly men's Bible study in Sweet. We are currently going through the book of Acts – one chapter at a time (is another way to do it? Topical, I guess… but would that count as "going through"?).  

Speaking of rabbit trails… so last night we tackled Acts chapters 3 thru 5. It was a great Bible study – even if our fearless leader was not around to keep us on track (note to leaders: don't pick your best blood hound to lead while you're gone. It doesn't work!).

Acts – that what we are talking about. *sigh*  What did I learn?  You mean besides how to tag an elk with a crossbow (I did mention we where in Sweet, right?).

Have you ever wondered why the Sanhedrin didn't kill Peter, John or any of the other twelve? I mean, they killed Jesus and Stephen…  The only reason that I can come up with is God (trump card). He must have had His hand on the Apostles to keep them from being killed (this is where you roll your eyes at me).
Seriously, if I was the Sanhedrin I would look up my old buddy Barabbas as ask him to do us a favor…. (ok – I can see the eye rolls getting larger).

Moving on….

How many of you out there would say that the phrase "times of refreshing" in Acts 3:19 refers to the present or the future?  We had quite the discussion about this phrase with different people thinking it referred to:

  1. The Holy Spirit – as promised by Jesus
  2. The breakthrough of the spiritual Kingdom of God in this world (ie. when we come to Christ we can have peace, rest, joy, ect now, at this time in history, even though we live in a fallen world)
  3. The Age-to-Come when God sits on His throne in the New Heaven and Earth, where we will have "joy unspeakable" because
  4. All of the above

17 "Now, brothers, I know that you acted in ignorance, as did your leaders. 18 But this is how God fulfilled what he had foretold through all the prophets, saying that his Christ would suffer. 19 Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord, 20 and that he may send the Christ, who has been appointed for you—even Jesus. 21 He must remain in heaven until the time comes for God to restore everything, as he promised long ago through his holy prophets. 22 For Moses said, 'The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among your own people; you must listen to everything he tells you. 23 Anyone who does not listen to him will be completely cut off from among his people.'

The end result – wow, look at the time!!!  We should really move on to Acts 4!

Ok – it really didn't happen that way… well, it kinda did…but not with those exact words.  I mean….hmmmm… rabbits anyone?

Actually, we all agreed that "times of refreshing" was referring to the salvation rest we receive when accept Jesus as our Lord. In addition, we also agreed that it has a double meaning referring to the Age to Come as shown in verse 21, "He (Jesus) must remain in heaven until the time comes for God to restore everything,".  It's not an either-or statement, but a both-and.

And to think we ended on a good note? What? You want to know what we thought of Acts 5 and Ananias and Sapphira? Hmm…  Let me just say the fear of God is a good thing…. and if we ever get beat up for Gospel, I pray that we leave:

rejoicing because they [we] had been counted worthy of suffering disgrace for the Name….never stopped teaching and proclaiming the good news that Jesus is the Christ.

What an exciting time!

I had a meeting this afternoon with a member of our church about the possibility of teaching an energy efficiency class to members of the community! The class would be based out of our church's food pantry facility and would be offered every twelve to ten weeks. This is an answer to a year long dream to take Let's Tend The Garden principles to the community in practical ways!

What makes it even sweeter is that God brought someone on board the LTTG team who's passion is energy efficiency!!! This means there's someone who can champion the class without everything relying on me (delegation is a GOOD thing!). And if this was not enough, God placed someone in position with the food pantry with the SAME VISION!! Only He could have worked all this out!! Hallelujah!!!! Laughing

While I was at the church, I bumped into a friend who leads a crisis pregnancy center. We discussed the need to have a family planning class in the church to help couples understand the Biblical foundations to having children as well as the best ways to delay having children.

Currently the main education source on birth control is the world as the church is not addressing the issue. We tell single people not to have sex before marriage or if they do, not to have an abortion. What we don’t to is education married couples on how to protect against unwanted pregnancies in a way doesn't kill unborn children. [@more@]

Add to this the fact that our society considers children as an unwanted 'thing', and we have a problem. We, the Church, need to teach people that children are a GIFT FROM GOD and are to desired, not despite.

Today was a brief conversation in a hallway – I don't know what God is going to do… I pray that somehow, someway, we will be able to create a class or seminary that addresses these issues within the church. Only He knows when that would be or who will teach it… Undecided

May the glory be to Him who create all life.