How Movies Taught Me to Get the Most out of Big Moments

Weddings are my favorite!

You don’t always see a big moment coming.  Those life-altering events often sneak up on us and seem pretty mundane at the time.

At the time I had no idea it was one of the biggest days of my life.  At the time, it was just Tuesday.  I was on my way to Western Civ and, on a whim, I decided to skip class and hang out with my roommate who was reading by the fountain on campus.  We hung out for a when a girl he knew walked up and joined us.  Eventually my roommate went to grab lunch.  Hours and two skipped classes later Kristan and I were still sitting on that same patch of grass….talking about life, laughing and each of us sharing old stories with the person we were going to be making new stories with for the rest of our lives.

At the time…it was just a Tuesday.  Who knew?


Other moments you see coming a mile away.

Weddings, for example, are the consensus BIG MOMENT.  Countless months and dozens of people all work together to make it as special as possible.

Then, in the blink of an eye it’s over and you stand there thinking, “Did I miss it?”

“It was a blur” is not the memory we want for our big moments.


Ferris Bueller’s Day Off


One of my favorite things to do when I perform a wedding ceremony is, right before we begin, I invite the couple to take a breath and look around the room.  It gives them a chance to enjoy the moment and not race through it.



Memento is a movie about a guy who has trouble remembering even the most important details.  It’s not enough to just enjoy the moment, but if we don’t actively work to hang onto the experience we will forget even the most special times.



Everyone knows to look for the big moments, but we let thousands of tiny little experiences pass by each day with barely a thought.  How many of our memories are those things that, at the time, seemed so small and insignificant.

Proximity Church will have it’s first service on 1-7-18!

That’s CLOSE!

Just like a wedding or the birth of a child we see it coming.  So we prepare and anticipate and even experience a little nervousness as the day approaches.

Then, on January 8th we are going to wake up and say, “Did I just miss it?”

I want us to enjoy that first Sunday as much as possible!  God is doing something great in Northeast Greensboro, but He’s also doing something great for US!  He invited US to be involved in this journey.  What a shame if we forget to enjoy it!

So…how can we make the most of our launch Sunday?

  1. Stop rushing around, press pause on the details, and look around at the experience itself and people we get to enjoy it with
  2. Intentionally work to remember everything!  The good and the bad will be cherished memories forever
  3. Don’t take anything for granted.  Setting up drape might be the thing we look back on in 20 years with the most fondness!

Yes…a big moment is coming!  We are blessed to see it coming.

Let’s make the most of it!



The “Type”

50 days!


It’s been a fun ride so far with some amazing travel companions.  God has brought (and is continuing to bring) quite the team together.  People who really want to experience something great & want others to experience it too.

People like Kenneth and Lewanne Norris.

This is a couple that didn’t expect to be starting a church at this stage in their lives.  I know!  They told me so!

“We’ve been in church a long time.  We grew up going to church, but we have NEVER done anything like this before.  It’s so exciting to be a part of what God is doing at Proximity Church!”  – Lewanne Norris

I wonder how many people miss out on the excitement of something like what God is doing at Proximity because they think it’s something that is only for a certain type of person.

In 50 days God’s going to do something special in Northeast Greensboro.  I believe He’s going to use Proximity Church for really great things.

I believe He’s going to use Kenneth and Lewanne for really great things.






Going Home

We are going home.

This Sunday, at 10:30 AM, our “Launch Team” will meet for the first time at Northeast Guilford Middle School to begin final preparations for our 1st Service on January 7, 2018.

(That’s January 7, 2017!  Click the link here to RSVP!)

Over the last year or so we have met in church basements, backyards and box seats at baseball games.  One of the most necessary qualities of a church planting team is FLEXIBILITY and the ability to go with the flow.  Our folks have it in droves!

That said, I’m ready to go home!

This Sunday everyone will get to see our space for the first time.  They will get to imagine our future and catch a glimpse of what God is going to do.

The most important thing we will do this Sunday is pray.

We thank God for Northeast Guilford Middle School and this Sunday we will spend our time praying for the Administration, teachers and students who are there every day.  We are going to pray that God would allow us to be a blessing to them as they have been a blessing to us.

And we are going to pray for our home…that it would feel like home for every guest that ever gives us the honor of visiting on a Sunday morning.




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Today is a very big day.

October 31, 2017 could very well be the day that the Houston Astros win their first ever World Series!  It’s not hyperbole to say I’ve waited my entire life for what is the most important game in franchise history.

It’s not just a game…

When Bregman hit that ball into left field yesterday I couldn’t help but jump and scream just like I did when I was seven…and seventeen…and twenty-seven.  I’m a thirty seven year old ADULT and I lose my mind watching the Astros in a way that I can’t even explain.

It’s so much more than a game.  It’s nostalgic.

Every hit, every run scored, every win brings back a memory…

Memories of the Astrodome with my grandfather.  We would walk up to the stadium and pay 6 bucks for the “cheap seats”.  He would tell me about the Colt .45’s while we watched Jose Cruz and Mike Scott from the rainbow seats.  Then, around the 5th inning, he would finally admit that the time was right to go sneak down to the lower level.

Sometimes we wouldn’t go to the game but we would sit and listen on the radio.  If the game ended with a win we would run out into the backyard and look to see if we could catch a glimpse of the fireworks shot off from outside the Dome.

My grandfather LOVED the Astros.  When we would play catch he would call out a players name to prompt me on what he was going to throw.  “Billy Hatcher” meant he was going to throw a pop fly.  “Bill Doran” meant I should prepare to dive because a hard ground ball was coming my way.  His mind was a steel trap of statistics and baseball history.  He could remember the batting averages of players from twenty years earlier as easily as he remembered my grandmothers birthday…maybe better 🙂  When his memory began to fade later in life it was like losing a library.

Then there was my dad.

I wasn’t all that close to my father, but there is nothing that says “father-son” like baseball.

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We had those moments.  I remember him buying me a glove.  I remember him tossing the ball around with me when I was younger.  I remember him getting so frustrated with the Astros that he would have to turn off the TV and walk outside.

Like father, like son I guess.

The last Astros game I saw in person was with my dad.

It’s funny, I think I’ve had more text messages and phone calls come in congratulating me today than I received when Nolan (named after Astro pitcher Nolan Ryan) was born.  Friends are telling me they are rooting for me as if it was me on the mound.

It’s nice.  I appreciate it.

But I haven’t missed Houston as much as I do right now in a long time.  It’s been 20 years and a baseball team has brought back memories in a way that is just silly.  Not baseball memories.  Over the last couple of weeks while the ‘Stros have been in the playoffs I haven’t been thinking about Bagwell’s funny batting stance or Biggio taking off his body armor after every walk.  I’m not reminiscing about Roger Clemens and Roy Oswalt or the time that the Astros NO HIT the Yankees with six pitchers at Yankee stadium.

I’m thinking about my grandfather.  I’m thinking about my dad.  I’m thinking about going to hundreds of Astros games growing up with friends who are sitting around their televisions feeling the same childlike nervousness and anticipation that I’m feeling right now.

Today is a very big day.

Earn History.






Kristan always jumps.


Kristan ALWAYS jumps!  The woman has no fear.

Not me.  I’m a coward.

It didn’t start out this way – long before we arrived at our hotel in Negril I had already heard about their “famous” jumping bridge.  I had already pictured myself jumping off countless times.  Then I saw it…and it was HIGH!  It was so high that I was suddenly perfectly calm and relaxed.  Not a bit of fear…

Because I knew right then that I wouldn’t ever step off that bridge!  That anxious feeling one gets when they prepare to jump is avoided entirely when you know you’re not going to take the step.

You don’t actually feel fear until you think about doing something risky.

I’m terrified of church planting.

Can I be honest and admit that?

Don’t get me wrong – I’m excited and convinced it’s the BEST thing we can do. I believe with all my heart that God is moving and Proximity Church is already doing big things for the Kingdom.

But I live with that anxious feeling in my stomach like I’m about to jump off that bridge.

I never did go off the bridge in Jamaica, but I did jump off some slightly lower cliffs.  Kristan never made fun of me (though she did push me to go a little higher than I wanted to) and she always wanted to jump together.  That made it a lot easier.

Our team is getting ready to jump.

We are excited and anxious and a little bit nervous.

It’s ok to be nervous.  If your faith isn’t calling you into something a little bit uncomfortable and risky then you are probably missing something.  The pattern of Jesus and the disciples, the Holy Spirit, and the teachings of Scripture tell us we aren’t supposed to play it safe.  We are supposed to jump.

Thankfully we aren’t jumping alone!




Top 3 Ways to Improve Your Reedy Fork Run

Let’s get this out of the way: I’m not a “great” runner.  My time isn’t stellar and my form probably leaves much to be desired.  When I run I look like an 18 year old overfed pug


This is not a blog about running.  If you want some great tips on running (or picking the right kind of race for you), check my friend Mike’s blog out!  He’s a Reedy Forker as well, but he looks like a gazelle when he runs.

This is a different kind of runner blog…


  1. Give HIGH FIVES to joggers going the other way

    Let’s make this happen!  Head nods, half-waves and “hey’s” aren’t any fun at all!  We can do better Reedy Fork.  Sure, its a little weird at first but I’ve done it a few times out here and I’ve got to tell you: It’ll get you pumped up!  Every runner from pug to gazelle can use a high five.

    Can we make this happen? 


  2. Enjoy the Wildlife

    I don’t wear my glasses when I run.  So, this one time I was jogging on Turner Smith and I could barely make out the silhouette of a rock a few yards ahead of me on the sidewalk.  Being the ever so wise runner that I am, I planned accordingly and moved over 2 inches to the left to avoid stepping on the rock.  However, just as I was getting ready to land the rock jumped out under my foot and made a squish sound.

    We have so much wildlife to enjoy on our runs!  More than just squishy frogs.  Each one can add so much to your run!

    Do you need a little pick-me-up when your pace is a tad slow?  We have coyotes howling

    Do you need a calorie boost when your energy wanes?  We have drone ants swarming.

    Do you need a spider web in your face?



    No.  You absolutely don’t ever want a spider web in your face.

  3. Pray/Meditate/Clear your Head

    Life can be stressful.  It’s so easy to get lost in a busyness of job stuff, chore stuff and homework stuff.  Some of us are dealing with even bigger stresses in life – marriages that are struggling, kids that are off-track, bills that are piling up, health issues, emotional struggles…the list can go on and on.

    We can’t avoid it.  We can’t ignore the difficulties of life.

    The beauty of a good run, however, is that you get a little bit of time to compartmentalize all the messy parts and just focus on the run, or on nothing, or on avoiding spider webs.

    Personally, I like to pray when I run.  If I’m not praying for me I pray for the homes along my path.  So, if you live in Reedy Fork, I’ve likely prayed for you.

    Also, and this is a bit off theme – I sometimes catch myself singing.  I listen to music and often forget that people can hear me.

    So there you have it.  Three things to make your Reedy Fork Run just a little bit more enjoyable: High Fives, Wildlife, and Prayer/Meditation.  The most important thing to do, however, if you are going to enjoy a Reedy Fork Run is to just get out there and do it!  We have an incredible neighborhood with nice trails and challenging hills.  Start slow with a couch to 5k and build from there!  You’ll be moving on up from Pug to Gazelle in no time!

Proximity Church Serve Day

I dug me a hole!


I’m not exactly skilled in the agrarian arts.  That’s an understatement.  I’ve literally never planted a plant.  Nope.  Not one.  Ever.

Then, about two weeks ago, the principal of Northeast Middle School (future meeting place of Proximity Church) shared some ways our church could bless them.  Top of the list was landscaping the front areas of the building.

And my heart sunk.

I don’t know what I expected.  Maybe I was hoping he wanted help with his fantasy football team.

Nevertheless, landscaping it was!  Our team was pretty excited.  We have some workers at Proximity Church!  I told them up front I don’t even know the difference between a shovel and a spade.  I seriously thought they were the same thing (Still do).   So I just showed up and let talented people lead the this thing.  They absolutely killed it!  Such an amazing job by such an amazing group of folks.

One of my greatest dreams for Proximity Church is that, regardless of whether a person ever comes or not, they would WANT us around because we just make their lives and community better.

Thank you Northeast Middle School!  We are so appreciative of all that you do for your students (and how great you’ve been to us already)!  We look forward to a long partnership of making Northeast Greensboro incredible!

Oh…and for the record, I dug me a hole and planted my first tree


Top 10 Things about Living In Reedy Fork Ranch

I LOVE my community!  12 years ago my wife and I moved into a small little neighborhood in Northeast Greensboro called Reedy Fork Ranch.  At the time it was us and like 5 other houses.  Now it’s grown to be a massive community and I don’t think I’ll ever leave.  Sure, the houses are cookie cutter and kind of close together, but I think that’s part of the charm.  You’ll never convince me that Reedy Fork isn’t the greatest place to live in Greensboro.  So, here are my top 10 things about living here:

10. The Pool – We have a pool!  It’s awesome.  Sure, it’s too cold in the first month (except for the questionably warm moments that happen to coincide with a passing child), but it’s such a great way to spend the summer!


9. Halloween – If you have never experienced a Reedy Fork Halloween you have seriously missed out.  It is chaotic cuteness on steroids.  Oh, you think you are going to watch Hocus Pocus and occasionally get up to greet a couple of superheroes and princesses as your door before returning to your couch?  That’s funny.  No, despite their costumes they might as well all be zombies b/c you’re about to get a taste of the apocalypse.  Pretty soon you’ll be screaming at your spouse to search the pantry for “SOMETHING! ANYTHING!” because you don’t think you can hold them off anymore.


8. The Morning Commute – At first you may be thinking, “What!?  How is this a positive?  It takes 20 minutes to get anywhere and HWY 29 is like a scene out of Mad Max!”

Exactly!  The average American spends less than 2 minutes in prayer a day.  I bet that’s not true of us Ranchers!  We have time and an urgent need!

7. Trails – Reedy Fork Ranch has a great trail behind the homes running alongside the creek.  It’s a fantastic place to walk, run or clear out spiderwebs with your face.

6. Rio Bravo – There are countless (read: 3) good restaurants in our area, but none of them have earned my patronage more often than Chilos Rio Bravo.  The waitstaff is friendly, the food is excellent, and every now and then you will get the chance to see how strong your heart is when someone get’s the ceremonial “Birthday Drum”

5. Flashback to “the good old days” – I know my neighbors.  My kids best friends have always been from in (or around) the neighborhood).  There is the smell of a grill fired up every evening and a spirit of friendliness/care in the community.  There’s not a lot of places in Greensboro that I would let my children just go out and ride their bikes.  In RFR, I can.


4. Cheap homeowners dues – $50/mo is just insane.

3. Food Lion – What?  You don’t love the LION?  C’mon!  Sure, Harris Teeter is more professional, but when I go shopping I want the adventure of not knowing.  Maybe the girl at the register will tell me all about her new boyfriend.  Maybe they will be all out of carts and I’ll be stuck with one of the kids carts (that looks like a car) despite not having my kids.  Maybe, just maybe, I’ll go in and find they decided to rearrange everything just to keep me on my toes.  Sure, Harris Teeter has a better meat selection, but there’s no unpredictability.

2 Community – I LOVE Reedy Fork Ranch.  The pool, the trails, the howl of the coyotes when I’m out for an evening run (that added motivation to keep my pace up!).  Ultimately, however, Reedy Fork Ranch is just a place…and there are a lot of great places to live.  What I love most about my neighborhood is not the place, but the people.  I don’t have to drive 20 minutes to a friends house – I can walk next door…or a few doors down…or around the corner.  We have a lot of friends here!


1. The Future – Reedy Fork currently has 900 homes.  900 families that call this neighborhood “home”.  Over the next decade our community is going to jump into the thousands!  This is awesome!  With every new house being built another family is moving in to contribute to making this the greatest place to live in Greensboro.

If you are new to Reedy Fork…let me be the first to say, “Welcome Home!”

Awestruck –> Proximity Part 3

Part 1
Part 2


Coaching kids soccer is one of my favorite things.  Last season my team, the Nighthawks, went undefeated and just dominated everyone we played.  I’d like to say it was all coaching, but the truth is that I just had 4 kids who can really play.

After every game there was always two questions:

  1. What was the final score?
  2. Who had the most goals?

We knew we were going to win.  By how much exactly was up for grabs but we knew we were going to put numbers up on the board.

What they REALLY wanted to know was who on our team scored the most goals.  A few times they would ask in the middle of the game and I could see it: they started ball-hogging a little bit more.  A couple of times I saw on their faces some expressions that were “less than enthusiastic” when a teammate would score.

Because THEY wanted to be the one who scored the most.

Sometimes it’s hard to share success.

In a couple of weeks Awestruck Church will be sending out an amazing team of people to start Proximity Church in Northeast Greensboro.  We will be prayed over, loved on and encouraged.  In about 5 months we will have our first Sunday…

Then something is going to happen.  Something terrible.

There will be some, in both locations, who compare Awestruck to Proximity.  Which church was more exciting?  Which church had the most people?  Which do I like better?  No one will say it!  We know better than that…but it will be a thought that creeps into the minds of some.

I really do understand.

Here’s the thing…

One day my two children, who I have poured everything into for 2 decades, will leave home and set out to make a life on their own.  It would be a pretty selfish dream to hope that they struggle.  What kind of father wants their kids to call home saying, “Life is a lot harder than I expected…I can’t do it without you”?   Likewise, it’s a pretty dumb kid that thinks he made it on his own!

My hope is that when my children leave home they step into a success that was beyond anything I could have ever achieved myself.  I want them do accomplish more than me…and I want their children to accomplish more than them!  That’s called LEGACY.  My legacy.

Their success is my success.

In 5 months, Proximity Church is going to begin and we are going reach a lot of people!  I believe that a bright future is in store for us.  As we look forward to our bright future we can do so with great thankfulness in our heart – for a church like Awestruck who has prepared us to realize our potential.

We should be excited!

And so should everyone at Awestruck.

Our success is their success.


I’ll never buy a weed-eater.


We can afford one.  That beautiful lawn stylist above runs about 140 bucks.  That’s nothing!  I’d be the envy of every yard barber on my street!

Nope.  I’ll never buy one.

I met my next door neighbor the very day I was moving in.  He is a big dude, and I needed a hand getting my mower off the truck.  So I strolled over, introduced myself, and asked him to give me a hand.  And then…




Sometimes the best way to connect with other people is to let them do something for you

We walk through life feeling like it’s our job to tackle everything alone.  We were designed, however, for a life lived completely to the contrary.  Community is shared burden, shared experience, shared life.

I’ll never buy a weed-eater of my own because the day I do is the day I have quit living in community.