Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Remember this post I wrote a couple weeks ago about the Great Commission Resurgence in the SBC?
Well, now there is something we can do to get this movement started. It's a small first step, but it's a step in the right direction. 
It's a declaration of what we are committing to with this resurgence and what we are expecting from the SBC'ers. 
Check it out and if you agree sign it here.

Friday, April 24, 2009

unexpected verdict

Last Sunday, J.D. (pastor of our church) preached a message that really spoke to me. 
It is something that has constantly been on my mind for years. There will be periods in my life where this topic just consumes my thoughts. And so I wanted to share his sermon with you in case this is an area where you struggle as well.
Open your bibles to Matthew 7:13-27 and click here to listen to the podcast of his message.
Blessings to all. :-)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Miss California and Perez Hilton

I was watching the Today Show yesterday morning, as is my usual custom, and they had a story about the Miss USA contest. Apparently there was some controversy involving the answer Miss California gave to a question asked by Perez Hilton
He basically asked her thoughts on legalizing same-sex marriage. The young woman answered honestly. She does not approve. Well, in typical Perez Hilton fashion, he blasted her on his website and called her all sorts of nasty names. 
Does anyone else see how ridiculous this is??? He asked her a specific question, she gave a specific answer, and he has the audacity to be upset? Are we not allowed to have our own opinions? 
Hilton claimed that her answer alienated much of the nation and her answer should be representative of all Americans. Well, Americans are diverse and we all have different ideas, opinions, thoughts, values, and morals. We do not all agree on every single issue. He also said that she should have kept her "politics" out of her answer and given a more "politically correct" answer. Whaaat?! I'm sure that if she would have said she supported same-sex unions he wouldn't be outraged and telling her to "keep her politics out of it." 

Here's an article on CNN's website that speaks to this issue and that I can respect. 

Monday, April 20, 2009

FamilyLife Conference

This past weekend Alex and I attended the FamilyLife Conference at SEBTS
We'll soon be celebrating a year in marriage, so we wanted to do attend this conference to refresh ourselves on what God has to say about marriage and family. 
Dr. Akin has a lot of wisdom to pass down in this area. I appreciate his candor and willingness to talk about every aspect of marriage, even the awkward parts. He's direct and and honest and draws his conclusions from Scripture and not his own opinions. He also has a lot of great stories as someone who has been married for about 30 years (I believe), raised four boys, and has just welcomed grandchild number four to the world. 
Alex and I are very thankful we had the opportunity to attend and soak up some godly knowledge on marriage. It's a huge blessing and a challenge, and I wouldn't have it any other way. 
Can't wait to celebrate our first year! Just 41 more days. :-)
[anniversary presents are more than welcome! *wink*]

Friday, April 17, 2009

spotlight video

My favorite band has done it again!
Check out their new video for "Spotlight." 
Can't wait to see them on tour again. 

MUTEMATH - Spotlight

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Great Commission Resurgence

Dr. Akin (president of my seminary) made an address in chapel today. The title of his message was "Axioms for a Great Commission Resurgence." 
I've not been Southern Baptist all my life. Even after I joined a Southern Baptist church at the end of my teenage years, I didn't think much of it.  I've never been aware the history of this denomination or its current issues.  Slowly I've been learning more and more, and of course there are good and bad things. Well, Dr. Akin "brought the heat," as one friend so eloquently put it. 
His address was excellent. I will outline his main points below, but you MUST go here and watch the video of his message. Anyone who is a part of the Southern Baptist Convention should listen to this and consider his words. You may not agree with everything, but it's all definitely food for thought. I think many interesting discussions will sprout from this. If you're part of the SBC in any way (and by the way, you may be a member of a Southern Baptist Church and not even know it!) then listen, consider, discuss, pray, and act. 

I. We must commit ourselves to the total and absolute Lordship of Jesus Christ in every area of our lives. (Col. 3:16-17, 23-24)

II. We must be gospel centered in all our endeavors for the glory of God. (Rom. 1:16)

III. We must take our stand on the firm foundation of the inerrant and infallible Word of God affirming it’s sufficiency in all matters. (Matt 5:17-18; John 10:35; 17:17; 2 Tim 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:20-21)

IV. We must devote ourselves to a radical pursuit of the Great Commission in the context of obeying the Great Commandments. (Matt.28:16-20; 22:37-40)

V. We must affirm the Baptist Faith and Message 2000 as a healthy and sufficient guide for building a theological consensus for partnership in the gospel, refusing to be sidetracked by theological agendas that distract us from our Lord’s Commission. (1 Tim. 6:3-4)

VI. We must dedicate ourselves to a passionate pursuit of the Great Commission of the Lord Jesus across our nation and to all nations answering the call to go, disciple, baptize and teach all that the Lord commanded. (Matt 28:16-20; Acts 1:8; Rom. 1:5; 15:20)

VII. We must covenant to build gospel saturated homes that see children as a gift from God and as our first and primary mission field. (Deut. 6:1-9; Psalm 127; 128; Eph. 6:4)

VIII. We must recognize the need to rethink our Convention structure and identity so that we maximize our energy and resources for the fulfilling of the Great Commission. (1 Cor. 10:31)

IX. We must see the necessity for pastors to be faithful Bible preachers who teach us both the content of the Scriptures and the theology embedded in the Scriptures. (2 Tim. 4:1-5)

X. We must encourage pastors to see themselves as the head of a gospel missions agency who will lead the way in calling out the called for international assignments but also equip and train all their people to see themselves as missionaries for Jesus regardless of where they live. (Eph. 4:11-16)

XI. We must pledge ourselves to a renewed cooperation that is gospel centered and built around a biblical and theological core and not methodological consensus or agreement. (Phil. 2:1-5; 4:2-9)

XII. We must accept our constant need to humble ourselves and repent of pride, arrogance, jealousy, hatred, contentions, lying, selfish ambitions, laziness, complacency, idolatries and other sins of the flesh; pleading with our Lord to do what only He can do in us and through us and all for His glory. (Gal. 5:22-26; James 4:1-10)

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

cool shot

BJ was the official photographer on the Mexico trip. He works for SEBTS taking pictures and he sure knows what he's doing. He posted a few of his photos on his personal blog
Recognize these legs???

Monday, April 13, 2009

first mission trip

We truly had an amazing time in Mexico. 
I'm still recovering...especially because we had a very busy Easter Sunday yesterday. 

The week was filled with laughter, baseball, tortillas, smiling children, gringos trying to speak Spanish, frijoles, the Bible...
One of the Bryans (there were four) and I led team six, the Marlins! We had a team of all teenage boys (most of whom were already pretty talented baseball players). At the beginning of the week I longed to be on a team with some of the younger kids. I'm used to working with little ones. But by the end of the week, I loved my team. They were great guys and I had a lot of fun joking around with them. 

Everyday after training at the different stations and before playing a big game between the teams we would do a gospel presentation. I did it two times. It was a bit nerve-wracking because I lacked confidence. I thought I would just fumble through it and it wouldn't make any sense. Well, God really gave me the words to say and I think it turned out pretty well! It was a great experience and I pray that those boys will consider the message we had for them and find a local church to learn more about God. 

It was really a great week. :-) I'm happy Alex and I were able to go on this mission trip together. We learned a lot. 

Alex put some of the photos on our mobileme gallery. Check 'em out. And if you went on the trip and would like to share your photos, just upload them to the gallery. 
I'll also put some on facebook of course. ;-)

Here's a photo with Javier. He was a good kid. Even helped me out with one of the gospel presentations. He didn't know he would be helping me, but he did well. Nothing like putting someone on the spot!

Friday, April 03, 2009


We are packed and ready to go on our mission trip to Mexico!
I'm not sure what to expect, but I'm sure God has it all worked out already. 
Tomorrow morning (before the sun even rises!) we'll be at the airport with the rest of our group getting ready to board a plane to Texas. We'll stay one night in Del Rio where my mom and dad will meet us for dinner! Haven't seen them in quite some time. The next day we will cross the border into Acuña and spend the week playing baseball with and ministering to a group of kids. 

Thanks to everyone who contributed money to our trip. We appreciate your gifts and faithfulness. And thank you to all who have been in prayer for us and the kids of Acuña. Keep on praying!

See you in a week.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

before & after

I'm a big fan of design*sponge
They always have great articles on home decor trends, DIY projects, and much much more.
Their style is perfection. 
Some of my favorite blog posts are their before and after projects.
I've not had experience reupholstering sofas or sewing throw pillows or revamping an entire bedroom set...but thanks to design*sponge I feel that it can be possible...someday. :-)

Here are some of my favorite after shots:

P.S. They also have great city guides. They have the 411 on cute shops, restaurants, and hang out spots in many cities in the US and abroad. 

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

something's hiding in here

These people are so talented. I love reading their blog to see what artistic project they're up to.
Here's a video of their lovely loft in Philadelphia. I'm really into home decor lately and I love seeing how creative people get with their living spaces. 

Check out their etsy shop too.