So, I’ve had a few crazy weeks and blogging has been on the way back burner as far as priorities go. I need a short break from working on my sermon so here we go… This will serve as a summary and update of my last two weeks.

Mission Trip To Suburbia
I posted recently about our week long missions trip to suburbia. We basically spent the week serving in Lower Bucks County. We worked with different housing groups and social service agencies. A highlight for me was the evening we spent with the “Chapel and Chow” folks at Philadelphia Park Racetrack. There is apparently a chaplain there (Jack) who has been quietly serving the workers of the racetrack. Most of the workers are immigrants who come from low income situations. He works there in a pastoral, counselor, social work role. He spends Wednesday and Sunday evenings in worship and the rest of the week working to make sure these employees are taken care of physically, emotionally, medically, etc. It’s really a neat ministry. Another hightlight was the realization that there are a lot of people quietly working with the poor in our county. We just never really hear of them since we are really good at hiding our poor. We’re also apparently really good at hiding those who work with them. The church in suburbia doesn’t really need to reinvent the wheel when it comes to caring for the poor among them. We’d be better off partnering and giving much needed resources to those who already have more experience and are already deep in the trenches. It was clear that most of these organizations were very excited to have a local church concerned about the same things they were concerned about. If you are part of a church in the burbs, I’d suggest that you find a way to connect with the social service agencies in your communities and neighborhoods. That’s really a great place to start.

Poverty Forum at The Well
Part of our missions trip week as that we hosted a forum on Suburban poverty. It was really a great event. We had three social workers, a local politician, a businessman and a pastor on a panel. Gary (my co-pastor) led the discussion around the challenge of poverty in our community. It was a great awareness event and we had about 50 people there, most of them weren’t from our church. One person who was there said, “I’ve been a Christian for a long, long time and its been just recently that I’ve even heard about stuff like this…” This both a problem and an opportunity. The suburban church needs a vision for its neighboring community and especially the poor. I think that starts with a gospel that addresses a holistic view of salvation and the recreation of all things… but that’s another blog post that I probably won’t write…

Missional in Suburbia Seminar
We had a great seminar with Al Hsu. Read more from Al here and you can listen to audio here.

8 Years of Marriage
Wow. So on July 29th my wife and I celebrated our 8th wedding anniversary. We’ve known each other for 12 years now and that’s a long time if you look at the fact that I am 31. I’ve now known her for almost half my life. I can honestly say that I love her more than I did 8 years ago. Not only that, but she makes me a better person. I can’t imagine who I would be without her… Okay. I’m done being a sap.

1 Year Anniversary of Mason’s Adoption
On August 4 we celebrated bringing Mason into our house for the first time. I can’t believe its been that long. If you are not a long-time reader of my blog, we adopted our youngest son Mason from Guatemala last August. He’s doing great.

The Well is growing and we’re learning to deal with it…
Usually summers are the times where we take away the chairs and move up the sofas for a more “intimate” worship gathering. Mostly because attendance really drops off in the summer due to students being gone and vacations and different schedules. This summer we’re not only adding chairs but we’re running out of room. God’s brought us some amazing people and its been a blessing to have a little more experienced folks join our community as well. We’re dealing a little with growing pains but its a really exciting time to be leading this church. So, we’re trying to embrace all the kids, the lack of space and chaos that comes with growth.

Okay, that should make up for my lack of blogging for a little bit at least. Enjoy your weekend.