Well, I suppose it's time to address what most of you know already. My life is changing in a huge gigantisaur way! Brian and I have officially become church planters. That still seems weird even to type. Our amazing home church has decided to close its Portland campus so that everyone can be one big ball of momentous energy in Vancouver. It's the perfect move for Truelife. Brian and I, however, are deeply in love with Portland and after much muchMUCH deliberation have decided to plant a church in the SE in Spring of 2011! (Perhaps I will share the whole story with you sometime, but it's a long long story)
If you've known me for longer than two years you know SE has been the one area of Ptown I said I would NEVER live in. My perceptions of it were filled with scary "lingerie show" houses, prostitutes, and garbage...a lot of garbage. Thankfully Jesus has done an amazing work in me and I can see two things much more clearly now. #1 The darkness I just described is exactly where we SHOULD be as Christians #2 There is a lot more to SE Portland than a short strip of SE 82nd (aka car lot row).
So...(fanfare here)...here are my favorite things about SE Portland (so far).
Lane Middle School - I may not necessarily want Elli to ever go there, but Lane has my heart. I have been working there as a mentor-program facilitator for 4 years now. This school has literally been invaded with Jesus followers over the last 4 years all the way up to the principal and you can tell. At first I HATED it. The kids were rude, crude and very hard to manage. BUT, my heart was softened and I'd like to think there's was too. Now I thrive in the diverse and energetic culture of Lane and it's faculty.
Papacino's - Brian and I both like this coffee shop quite a bit, even thought the coffee isn't awesome. It's in the heart of the Woodstock area (one of our target areas) and is surrounded by giant windows so you can view the people both inside and out from one of their 10 or more cozy wingback chairs.
Laughing Planet - This restaurant is super yummy! Just yesterday I ate an amazing BBQ chicken quesedilla that I'm already craving a repeat of. All of their ingredients are whole, organic, local and hormone-free. Brian and I aren't exactly in the enviro camp, which a lot of it's proceeds go to, but I really like their bent towards healthy food and supporting local schools and farms.
Eastmoreland - I can only dream of ever leaving there, but Eastmoreland area is absolutely GORGEOUS! It'll be a nice place to cruise the stroller through.
Diversity- SE has a little bit of everything. Rich, poor, white, black, asian, hispanic. Super duper liberal, plain 'ol middle class, hippies, hipsters, gangs, artists, chefs, gardners, condo-dwellers and soccer moms all reside their. God is mulitfaceted and His creation displays it. I love that. I am so excited to see how so many different kinds of people can come together and serve the exact same God, just like in heaven. Beautiful.
Jessica Turner brought up a great internal debate I've been having. Is it time for Elli to give up the paci? She's 13 months old now and I can see her gradually becoming more and more obsessed with it. She's only ever had it during nap/bedtime and church services (when she feels the need to chat with Daddy or Papa while they're on the mic). Lately, however, whenever she finds one that she has chucked out of the crib she snatches it up and pops it in. Until recently she would have just ignored it.
I'm also concerned because after having it in her mouth for a while (like in the mornings) she does a weird thing with her tongue for a long time and it causes her "speech" to be different than it is the rest of the day. (yes, I AM that paranoid first time mama at times).
So what do you think? Is now the time? Do I really want to put myself through this? (right now I can do nothing but dread this process)
Verve's building certificate has arrived! WOOHOO! Thanks so much for your prayers. I can't wait to hear how there launch goes!
At first this may feel a bit out of place since my posts have been so sparse lately, but I just HAVE to let you know about something!
For well over a year Brian and I have been following the journey of Vince and Jen Antonucci via blog stalking. Last year they packed up their family and moved to Las Vegas. Their mission was to plant a church ON THE STRIP! That's right, a church ON the strip FOR people ON the strip! Their vision is so crazy, big, scary and AWESOME that I can't help but get excited everytime I read the latest update.
They have now been in LV for a year and are launching their church, Verve, this Sunday! They've been doing amazing thiings over the past year and I believe their church is going to successfully reach a group of people that need Jesus the most.
A few things need to happen, however, in order for their launch to be pulled off. They are wrapping up a big remodel project on their warehouse space and are STILL waiting for the city's occupancy approval. Yep, 5 days 'til launch and a pretty big hurtle still needs to be jumped. This is where you come in. Will you pray with me for this church plant? Will you pray that everything will go through in time and that they have an incredible launch day? Jesus longs for us to invade darkness with His light and that's exactly what this team is doing. Isn't awesome that we can be a part of this great invasion through prayer?!
Feel free to pass this info along, the more prayer the better!
I have to confess something. I am a stalker. Nearly each day I open my google reader and get a tiny touch of the butterflies when one of my favorite bloggers has a new post. I devour it quickly, drooling over their great creativity, wishing that I would win one of their giveawaysso that we could email each other personally and (most embarassing of all) feeling certain yet again that if I met any of these ladies in person we would hit it off like old chums...maybe even be best friends.
When I started my own blog I had great visions of not only sharing my life with a few friends and family, but of being "discovered" and my humble little blog "going viral" (don't really know if that even means what I think it means). I'm not really sure what I'd be discovered for since this blog has zero specific focus whatsoever, but that's beside the point (have you seen how cute my baby is!?).
After a while I realized how much I truly love to blog, but how inconsistant I am, unlike my best friends all of the wonderful people I read. If only I knew what I was doing, then I could go to great events (like Blissdom or Relevant) and then I would meet my peeps these people that bring a bit of joy and inspiration to my life.
Ah well...I may never be a famous blogger but I will continue to cyber stalk, try getting in as much writing time as a busy ONE YEAR OLD (what?!) allows and hope that my humble little blog will bring a bit of its own joy and inspiration into your life.