Sunday, December 25, 2005

My newest family member

Austin and Calli ( with help from the parents) decided that I needed a dog, to replace Buddy T. Beagle who passed away this past year. So on Christmas day, they gave me Phillip (Phil ) James Mitchem Phil is 9 weeks old, so we will get to do all of the housetraining of a dog in the middle of winter, but it well worth, Phil does not bark ( yea!) and loves to snuggle. I will post more pictures in a couple of days. By the time we left the Walker Place, he had toys, food, leash and everything to get settled in the Mitchem Mansion.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

What A fun Day

What  A fun Day

Yesterday the 23rd of December was one of those days with a lot of fun and business of the day. I handled  sound for a funeral, It was interesting thinking of death so close to Christmas. With not only this funeral, the death of Tony Dungy son, and 2 staff members lost in laws in the past couple of days. There is a lot of death around the church, at the this time of a birth of Jesus.

Afternoon was lunch with Aaron and Brett Johnson ( Parker Youth) who were in the twin cities having for the holidays. The afternoon was meetings for Christmas eve services. Around 6 pm got a call from Ty Schraufnagel who is also from Parker who in town for about a week  seeing relatives. He called and his Brother, Austin and I took off to see the NBA game at the Target Center, followed by a nice burger at Fudruckers. A quick stop at Cub for shopping and then to church around 1 am working on a sound issue.

I love busy days that are not only busy, but fun

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Christ in us!

I KNOW most of you would look at this cartoon and simply see humor. But as I reflect on it I am reminded of Colossians 1:27 which says, “ Christ IN you, the Hope of Glory” and Galatians 2:20 Nevertheless, it is not I who lives but Christ who lives IN me”

Soooo, that means that we ALL should be in the same boat as Kermit, all we are and do and say is Christ living IN us and through us.

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Mike Tice agrees with me

I guess my early post, about the Metrodome not being loud this past week, was correct as Coach Mike Tice rips fans for selling tickets to Steelers faithful
See the following link fromESPN ( The worldwide Leader in Sports!)

The Death of Leo

One of my favorite shows, all the way back to the beginning is The West Wing. There is not an episode of the show I have not seen. I have turned scenes of the show into bible studies, used clips from the show in youth group as a discussion starter, and gotten numerous illustrations and stories that were originally shared on the show. The show is smart, fast paced, and represents the west wing in a way that makes me sincerely hope that is how our government operates.

That being said, I was really sad yesterday to learn that John Spencer, who plays long time Chief of Staff to the President and current Vice Presidential candidate, passed away of a heart attack.
The first scene of the very first episode is a classic one that shows Leo walking through the west wing first thing in the morning and things are hectic as usual and as he walks and never slows down he is giving orders as fast as people can take them. From that first moment, viewers were drawn to his character. Leo was the Karl Rove of the west wing. Behind the scenes, controlling everything that goes on in the party, and hand picked Jed Bartlet and led him to the White House. In another twist of irony, the character suffered a heart attack on the show. Not only that, they were also both recovering alcoholics. Leo was a beacon of loyalty on the show, even at one point risking his career so that the president would not look bad for one news cycle.

He will be missed and I am really curious to see how the writers are going to handle the second half of the season in January. You will be missed Mr. Spencer.

Sunday, December 18, 2005


I have fix the feature, so you should be able to comment as you wish, so enjoy yourself

I all I want for Christmas is a goat

I all I want for Christmas is a chicken or goat. Really, the staff at HUMC is not given gifts to each other , but pooling our money to send to Heifer Project  or some organization like them I think it a great way for a church staff to model what important in the Christmas Season.  We did this at my last church also. The animal will go to a community in the third world nations to help families and the whole community. So if you like, please by me a goat this year.

steelers win

Today I was able to go to the Vikings / Steelers game. It was great to see the Steelers in person, it has been a several years. Some thoughts about the day

  • The only way to go is the light rail system. Fast, easy and cheap

  • I thought the crowd noise was not as loud as I thought it would be,  but then again the home team loss

  • Every game needs a drunk fan in front of you, We had Kevin

  • He always complains about how bad the team is and then praise them in the next play. He may get his own blog post on Monday

  • The Dome, does need to be replaced, to help the Vikings and the fans

  • The cheerleaders are very nice for the Vikes

  • The fans from both teams made the event a fun place to watch a game

  • It was very cold walking to the stadium, I am glad it was a dome. A cool 3 degree at game time. Yikes

  • Tailgating appears not to be big deal when it 3 degrees

  • Mike Tice and really throw the “red flag”

Saturday, December 17, 2005

Simpsons and Religion

Can you tell I found a new Simpson site. Someday at HUMC i will do a short series on the Simpsons Bible Study.

Homer: I'm not a bad guy! I work hard, and I love my kids. So why should I spend half my Sunday hearing about how I'm going to Hell?

Krusty: So, have a merry Christmas, a happy Hanukkah, a kwaazy Kwanza, a tip-top Tet, and a solemn, dignified, Ramadan. And now a word from MY god, our sponsors!

Homer: Your mother has this crazy idea that gambling is wrong. Even though they say it's okay in the Bible.
Lisa: Really? Where?
Homer: Eh, somewhere in the back.

Ned Flanders: They've broken every commandment except one.
Carl: Hey Lenny, covet some chili fries?
Lenny: You bet.
Ned Flanders: That's it. The whole shebang.

Homer: Jesus, Allah, Buddah. I love you all!

Apu: I have come to make amends, sir. At first, I blamed you for squealing, but then I realized, it was I who wronged you. So I have come to work off my debt. I am at your service.
Homer: You're selling what, now?
Apu: I am selling only the concept of karmic realignment.
Homer: You can't sell that! Karma can only be portioned out by the cosmos.
Apu: He's got me there.
Homer: I've always wondered if there was a god. And now I know there is -- and it's me.

Homer: "You know, the one with all the well meaning rules that don't work out in real life, uh, Christianity"

Bart: Mom, can we go Catholic so we can get communion wafers and booze?

Lisa: I'm no theologian. I don't know who or what God is. All I know is he's more powerful than Mom and Dad put together.

Homer: God bless those pagans.

Barney: Jesus must be spinning in his grave!

Duffman: New feelings brewing inside Duffman... What... WOULD JESUS DO?!

Cletus: Stranger! You're tresspassin' on my dirt farm!
Man: Ah, do you happen to need a mesiah?
Cletus: No, but I'll take them sacks of money from ya.

The Simpsons

To encourge many visits to the blog, look to the right and you will see random Simpsons Quote, which will change with each visit. So when I do not have time to update the blogs, you will still have something to read.

Simpson Quote

Simpson Quote
“ Well, crying isnt gonna bring him back … unless your tears smell like dog food. So you can either sit there crying and eating can after can of dog food until your tears smell enough like dog food to make your dog come back or you can go out there and find your dog.

Thursday, December 15, 2005


I hate not being able to talk to a human being when you call a company, but there is hope look at the attach link that will provide a cheat sheet in the those lovely voice mail systems.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Sucess is?

‘I don’t know the key to success, but the key to failure is trying to please everybody’ – Bill Cosby

Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Gallup Poll Find God in America!

Gallup: Poll Finds Americans' Belief in God Remains Strong By E&P Staff Published: December 13, 2005 12:15 PM ET
NEW YORK A new Gallup survey released today finds that four decades after the "God Is Dead" controversy was first noted, Americans retain a strong belief in a higher power. Some 94% think God exists. Only 5% feel God "does not exist" -- and even most of them "are not sure" of that. Exactly 1% are certain there is no God.But how strongly do the believers believe? Nearly 8 in 10, in fact, say they are "convinced" God exists, although Gallup does not ask them why that is.Conservatives are more likely to be convinced than liberals (87% vs. 61%), women a little more likely than men (82% vs. 73%), and residents of the South more than those in the East (88% vs. 70%).Surprisingly, some 61% of those who seldom or never attend church are nevertheless convinced that God exists.

A College Prayer

A College Prayer~"As I walk though I walk through the valley of borderline grade, I will not have a nervous breakdown; for thou art with me. Though giveth me answers in the moments of blankness; thou annointest my head with understanding my test paper runneth over with questions I recognize. Surely passing grades shall follow me all the days of my examinations and I shall not dwell in this University for ever AMEN. "

Monday, December 05, 2005


So what worse, -2 in Hastings and a little wind, or 10 degrees and 80 mph wind in Boulder or 2 feet of snow in Fountain Co. Thinking Hastings is better, well if the car starts tomorrow

Thursday, November 24, 2005



Well hear I sit for the first thanksgiving of the life in Hastings, being single it could be a hard day. I am doing everything I can to make it special. The Turkey is in the oven, green beans, fresh bread, sweet tea, stuffing and homemade mashed potatoes with Blueberry pie will make a dinner around 2 pm.. I will eat well today.

Josh, Ty I, Chelsea stopped over last night for a few moments last night,  this will be a fun couple of days with College age in town. Josh will have a Birthday so this weekend he and I are off to Olive Garden to celebrate. That will be a blast.

This afternoon/evening will be phone calls and text pages to many people, I truly feel blessed for the Holidays.

I will miss not being with Kurt and the Parker gang, I will really miss Bev Newcomb homemade potatoes, but I have National Lampoon Christmas Vacation to watch, so all is well.

So wondering what you are thankful for today?

Nashville has ended

Nashville has ended, and I am home. The Sunday Afternoon session had Louie G preaching, there is nobody who can preach like Louie, with his closing and then singing by Tomlin, was unbelievable. With 7000 people you could hear a pin drop during Louie session, He talked about how worship is way to complicated today. His closing had me speechless, I just sat at the end of the session.  I have listen  3 times since he was done and it still bring tears to my eyes, Chris played 1 ½  a songs then just let the crowd finish the last part of the song. You could see Marko was speechless and just let the moment be the moment to close the session.

Monday-- Marko did a great job in closing the session, I missed not doing communion, but understand with 7000 people, why that happen. The closing song I was able to see Tic, Karla and Marko together, truly that a unique and powerful friendship, I do not know them, but love them.

I guess the judge of a good YS is how you do when you get home, My devo life has never been this strong after a YS event, I hope it continues.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Day 1 in Nashville

It has been a busy couple of days since arriving in Nashville for the Youth Workers gathering. I have been able to hang with Sarah from Cambridge UMC, we are working on a training event for the winter. It has been great to share a couple of general sessions together. I also ran into Paul from Crossroads in Parker. I gave Paul my cell phone and hope to catch up with him. I miss Paul and all of the youth workers in Parker.

I always love the opening session this year with a gathering 7500 people were packed in the arena. Worship with Crowder is amazing. This year first keynote speaker was Mark Yac…. It had to be special for him to be a speaker at this year event. Mark spoke on Luke 7 11-15. I remember one of his lines which are still rolling around in my head at this moment; the line is “Trust my presence is enough”. I love that if we have God Presence we have all that we need . Truly I need to work on his presence more in my life.

The Skit Guys were with us each of the sessions and they are on fire this year. I love all of the skits, and will need to maybe get some of their CD’s

Doug Fields spoke on Friday Night. This was one of the 2 nights I was stroked about. First Crowder, was Crowder, I love his stage presence and he just has a blast singing. I love his “You are my Joy”. I took a couple of moments and just stared at the crowd, 7500 people, who are there for 70000 youth singing “You are my Joy”.

I love Doug preaching style, always have a couple of slides, always great stories and solid advice for going into the world. I think of all youth preaching style, I try to be like Doug’s in style. On the funny side he made a comment about a cult that haunts all of us in youth ministry – the cult- Home School Parents. It might have got the best laugh of the whole weekend. Doug talked about train wrecks in ministry ( like Doug- I am tried of seeing train wrecks in people in ministry), Doug main theme was that we need to learn to say no, to say yes. The concept is we need to say no to all of demands that invade our ministry area so we can say yes to slowing down our pace of life. This really spoke to me, we always try to be people / church pleasing people in ministry. Doug had a great illustration of saying no when asked to help with the membership class at his church. Doug held is ground in a way I do not have the courage to, maybe in the future I will have the courage. Another of my favorite lines, he wanted to stress as a veteran youth worker, he wants us youth workers to be balance in our lives. Doug had a Senior Pastor who told Doug in his younger years never took take anytime off; the Devil never has a day off! Doug response was that the devil is not his model. Jesus work to slow down his life, to be alone to be with friends. Jesus (100 % man, 100 % God) left work undone, people unhealed and took time to be alone. I need to work on that. I also need to focus harder on doing my work during the week, and refocusing on my days off. I need to do less phone calls and less emails on the days off. Doug talked about the use of the off buttons on our emails/cell phones and such. Doug and I have both been in ministry when we were able to do ministry without both of these items in our ministry, they are blessing and a curse at the same moment.

The Jesus painter was on stage as Crowder played Wonderful Cross, I cried. Those are great Jesus moments. I am wondering why I cry at great worship? The last time in worship was at Tomlin concert.

Last night I spent an hour in the prayer chapel, which was rewarding

Saturday was a fun day I still need to process tonight, so more on that later.

I enjoyed watching the OSU game. I found a sports bar next to the Hotel and had tons of youth workers watching the game. It great to watch a game with people who are passionate about the game, it helps that OSU won in the last 30 seconds !!!!!

Well the Pizza should be hear soon, after espn I am going to look at John in the bible

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Nashville Day 1

Well after a staff meeting, ( I love my staff we just have a blast together!), a meeting with area youth pastors and a flight I have landed in Nashville.

The Renaissance Hotel is a great hotel, When I check in they noticed that I am Marriott Reward customer, so they upgrade my room to a nice large corner room and I am on the 15th floor. The view of the downtown is great.

Checked out the Vendors area and got some free shirts and some information. There is a lot of vendors selling everything you need and a lot of things you will never need in youth ministry.

I enjoyed talking to Mediashout folks here; I will be meeting with them 1-1 tomorrow to better understand the Media software I use in youth ministry. This is great since we are moving to use the Mediashout 3.0 in worship starting next month.

I did leave the hotel and visited a great BBQ place a couple of blocks from the hotel. Great food, it was a cold walk with temperatures around 32 so it was a brisk walk. When it nicer this weekend I am going to stop in a couple of places and hear some country music

I love sweet tea in the south.

I am off to read a little before I am off to bed.

More tomorrow


So answer me this, why is that you do not trip the Pilot of an airplane who flies at 32000 feet at 500 Miles an hour, but you do tip a Shuttle bus driver who drives you from the airport to the hotel and you feel like you next stop may not be at the Hotel by in the actual kingdom seeing God himself. Just asking ….

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Off to Nashville

I am off on Thursday to Nashville at the National Youth Workers Convention with 7500 other youth workers, this is my 5th year of going. An idea was made to share what are my priorities while at the convention, so therefore

When I am at YS I Promise….

To be still for at least 30 minutes each day in prayer.

To refuse bringing up numbers, percentages, or projections about how huge my ministry is or is going to be.

To admit that every person attending YS is probably smarter, nicer, more godly and more faithful than me.

To thoughtfully fill out a seminar evaluation form.

To worship God… not David Crowder, Chris Tomlin, or to focus on the cool media, but to worship God with all of heart, mind and soul.

To sit in the front row of the seminar I attend. Not the back.

…To see, in every youth worker, 10 students they love, and recognize that this convention isn’t about 7000, but 70,000… and then I will pray, weep, and say “thank you” to God who lets us love “the least of these”… teenagers.

Take time for myself to watch the OSU football game on Saturday

To go out one night and see downtown Nashville, and not just stay in my hotel room.

To call or write one person each day whom I have not been faithful about connecting since I have left Colorado, to remind them how important they are in my life.

To attend the 8 am Bible Study with Tic Long every day ( just found out it at 7:15 on Saturday)

To do something unique and special for Karla Yac….

To be social and greet each person who sits next to me in the General Sessions and seminars.

Spend less time on Email for 4 days.

Restart my prayer list

To spend time in the bible each day.

Well we will see how good I do when I return

Missing People

Is it not interesting who God puts in your life for even a short period of time? I got an email from Chris Martin, a college student at Colorado Christian College. Chris and I only spent a little time together maybe a couple of meals and time working on Up with Youth ( a huge youth gathering in the Rocky Mountain Conference), but we always had a blast together. Chris was always fun to be with, even at 3 am in the morning when we had a little youth breakout of the dorm rooms.

I heard from Pat Bell today, the main singer of Parker Praise and Worship band, after the email and talking to Kurt last night, I think I miss just the sharing of time, not even the band moments, but just sharing of life!

There are already people here in Minnesota, that I cannot imagine not sharing day to day life with and it only been a few months.

I wonder who else God has in my life for a short time, but will leave a lasting impression on me and my ministry. Sometimes I wish I could clone myself and be in Ohio, Colorado and Minnesota all at the same moment, just to be with people. I look forward to all of my neat friends being in one place when our life is done here on this earth.

Any comments on this Picture?

Found this picture on Marko ( blog, best comment on the picture, I think was "Officer you can kiss my Mc-Butt" was the line that sent Ronnie away for the night.

a thought on what Youth Ministry should be....

Luke 7:11-17 and the idea of affirming. "To love someone is to reveal the beauty of who they are to themselves

Tuesday, November 15, 2005

Aol instant messenger

Aol instant messenger has a new beta software located at it will take aol to  new level, you should give it a try.

I also have to say I am enjoying the new msn messenger ( thanks to Ty Walker) version a lot also. I will be glad when I can only have one, currently I have to Yahoo, AOL and msn. That a lot of stuff.

My first taste of winter in Hastings !!!

The first snowfall is starting in Hastings this evening. We may get up to 4 inches of snow before tomorrow. I am actually looking forward to the snow. The main reason is I am leaving town on Thursday. First  I am off to the National Youth Workers Convention in Nashville. I have not been in Tennessee for years since visiting Atoka ( population 848 – Insert small town jokes here please!). My thinking is that Nashville will be a little bit bigger, there will be over 7000 youth workers hanging in downtown Nashville.  I will arrive back in Hastings Monday night and spend my first major  “Family”  holiday here in Hastings. It will be great to connect with some of the college students who will return for the long Thanksgiving weekend,  Then Sunday I fly off for a quick trip to see a close friend, then back to Hastings on Wednesday just before the big 41st Birthday.

I will try to blog with great questions/comment when I am in Nashville.

The First Blog

Welcome to my Blog, I am living in Hastings MN.. I am currently serving as a youth pastor at Hastings United Methodist Church. You will read some posts on Youth Ministry, Life and my favorite sports teams. The Steelers and The Ohio State University.