Brain Dump -- Learning from a Redwood About Ministry that Endures

Redwood Trees
- are huge (can't tell how big they are without people in the shot)
[Don't tell me about your building or your bank account; tell me how many people you've reached]

- have been here longer than we have
[This thing didn't start when you came into position and it won't end when you leave ]

- oldest and tallest are found in valleys/gullies with year-round streams and where fog-drip is regular
[We need some year-round streams and some fog-drip!]

- thick bark protects from fire and insect damage
--- can go through fire and not get burned [Can't wear our feelings on our sleeves]
--- anything damageable is too high to be reached by fire [Must lay up treasures in heaven.]

* Succession Planning
- new Redwoods feed off older, fallen Redwoods

Jesus didn't finish everything He started (Acts 1:1 "began"), and you may not finish everything you start either

- Jn 15:15
- Acts 20:20
- 2 Tim 2:2

* Keep the main thing the main thing
- Redwoods are happy being trees, don't wish they were something else
- God determines the main thing, not you
- Just because you can, doesn't mean you should.
--- lift with your legs, not with your back

* Cooperative, not Competitive
- Redwoods don't fight each other -- they help each other
- What if God decided to save 1000 souls in your city, but He did it through the church next door?
- Cooperative -- work together, Eph 4:16
- Not competitive -- no envy, each should esteem others better (Phil 2:3-4)

Brain Dump -- The Real Jesus

Genesis 1:26
And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

Romans 8:28-29
28 And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
29 For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren.

2 Corinthians 3:18
But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.

[churchianity] is raising a lot of nice unbelievers who go to church. - unknown

Romans 1:23
And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.

Matthew 24:23-24
23 Then if any man shall say unto you, Lo, here is Christ, or there; believe it not.
24 For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect.

Matthew 14:28-29
28 And Peter answered him and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water.
29 And he said, Come. And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus.

Mama Jesus - "Ah, hon, tell mama all about it." "Let me kiss your boo-boos away."

Flannel-Graph Jesus - The one we imagine walking on the sea shore or carrying a lamb, but not doing much today.

All-American Jesus - loves baseball and apple pie, wants everyone to have a nice house and nice care.

Bartender Jesus - someone to tell your troubles to

Mystic Jesus - so deep you can't understand Him, or like the force on Star Wars

Historical Jesus - acknowledged as a historical figure, but died years ago

Help-Me Jesus
- version 1, "help me, Jesus, achieve my dream"
- version 2, the one we call on in 911 moments, "Help me, Jesus!"
- version 3, "So help me Jesus, I'm gonna bust you if you don't straighten up!"

The Real Jesus
- loves you as you are, but also loves you too much to leave you that way
- might be a little like Sergeant Gunny (Kids' favorite commercial: "You know what makes me sad? You do! Maybe we should chug on over to mamby-pamby land where maybe we can find some self-confidence for you, you jackwagon.  Tissue?  Crybaby!")
- might be a little like eagles who boot eaglets from the nest to teach them to fly
- might be a little like giraffes who repeatedly kick their newborns over to teach them to stand up.
- The real Jesus was anything but boring.
- Jesus was not crucified for His pacifism!

A dangerous prayer might be: Make me more like Jesus!


Where in Acts can one find a bored Christian?

Rather, their own world was turned upside-down, and all the complacent religious folk got nervous saying, "Those that turned the world upside-down have come here also."

We teach our kids how to survive the world, but we ought to teach them how to change the world!

Misc Stats Regarding Decline of Family Values

Stats presented in a meeting in late 2010 or early 2011... sources not identified.

Population of married people in US is decreasing: 7.4% of population in 2000, 4.3% in 2007.

Separation of couples in America: 2.3 million are married but separated.

Divorce: 1970 4.3m, 1996 18.3m, 2000 21m, 2008, 25m

Co-habitation: 1960 - 439k, 2000 4.8m, 2007 12m

Single parenting: 2002 16.5m, 2003 20m, 2009 22m

Out-of-wedlock births: 1970 399k, 1980, 666k, 1990 1.16m, 2000 1.5m, 2007 1.72m

Fatherless families: 40% of households

Domestic violence: 2.5m per year

Adult health crisis: 70m will some sort of heart disease (due to lack of diet and exercise, along with 'anything is OK' attitude)

Childhood obesity - 60%

Addition to alcohol and drugs: 2003 195m, 2008 117.8m

Child maltreatment:
- Abused children in US: 2005 889k cases of substantiated abuse or neglect, 2006 2.4m, 2007 3.2m
- Foster children: 2007 500k, 2009 710k
- Kinship care: 6m living with grandparents or relatives
- Number of children who died at hands of their abusers: 1960 4, 2005 1460, 2008 1740

In the last 10 years, 4m children have aged out of foster care.

Juvenile justice system: 2002 126k, 2006 220k, 2011 400k+

Teen Crisis
- teen rape: 2004: 210k, 2008 410k
- teen pregnancy: 2006 750k
- teen abortion: 2006 2004k
- teen suicide: 2003 3rd leading cause of death in teens, 2005 2nd

Childless couples: 2007 27% by choice, 2009 36%

Church fellowship: population increased by 11.4% from 1986 to 1996, but church attendance decreased 12%

Faith in America today: 1990 86% Christian, 2001 79%, 2008 76% -- current trends predict Islam to be the dominant religion in America by 2050