Saturday, February 28, 2009

Atlanta BIRTHDAY trip...

What do the Braves and the American Girl Doll store have in common? They are both in Atlanta and we are taking the girls on a short weekend birthday trip. We love to travel and we have some big travel plans for 2009 (Disney World coming in October). When we travel we get to make memories. Tonight Chelsea and I both have our laptops out making plans for May. I am excited because I am a Braves fan and I get to take my little girls to their first Braves game. Chelsea is stoked because we get to take the girls to the American Girl Doll store. They only have those stores in 5 or 6 cities and when we visited the one in Chicago we knew we had to take the girls to one. We are also going to hit one of the spots featured on Diners, Drive ins, and Dives. We love the show and are going to start trying to hit some of the places on the show when we can.

This is going to be fun...watching Chelsea and I surf the Internet and plan at the same time = BRILLIANT!

Friday, February 27, 2009

stuff to check out...

Love music and love reading, this is the STUFF I LIKE post for the week. I figure since this is my blog I get to talk about stuff I like and here are three things I AM REALLY liking right now.

RELEVANT magazine is like getting a birthday present in the mail every other month! Great writing, insight, and perspective every time it comes in the mail. I get it and start reading the same day every time. Go to to check it out and ORDER yours today. It is the best deal out there. Oh and if you like music, this magazine and its coverage will blow you away.

MANCHESTER turned on to these guys about a year ago by Jamie McGregor and I can not stop listening. Saw them live at rocket town a few months ago and they blew me away. Their new album drops April 21 and it is going to be amazing. Go to itunes right now and get their last album and get ready to be blown away. GREAT SOUND and they are on their own label. Yes, they have their own label...the wave of the future for the music industry. The cd cover above is their last EP, love the artwork.

ROBBIE SEAY BAND...this album and their last are both amazing.There is no these guys sound like comparison for RSB. It never gets old, its makes you think, it always helps me see God more clearly. These guys lead worship at a church in Houston called Ecclasia, go check it out at . I love when artists serve in the local church. We are so blessed at GCC to have Daniel Doss and Jason Roy call our church home and see them serve the church with their writing and leadership. More artists are going to be partnering with the church in the coming years.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

what do you do to PAUSE?

We start a new series at REMIX (our student environment) tonight called PAUSE. How do we stop in the midst of constant interaction, communication, activity, entertainment, responsibility, and congestion to discover, listen to, and connect with God. In my own life I need this series. I know the teens that are involved with Relevant need it. We all seem to live in constant motion and when things slow down we do not like who we are or where we are. I am pumped to see how the series works in our lives over the next three weeks. This is the LENT season and it is a 40 day period for people to go without something significant in their life to better hear and relate to God. One of my favorite bloggers, Anne Jackson, is giving up her blog and Facebook for 40 days. The goal is not look spiritual or important, if you read Anne's blog will see how authentic he is, the goal is to PAUSE. I grew up in a Baptist church so this Lent season is a new concept to me but it 100% connects with the idea of taking a PAUSE.

What do you do to PAUSE in your busy life? For me the reality of God and what matters in life are most apparent when I PAUSE to invest in my family. Music is a huge part of my effort to PAUSE in life. I am very driven person so the next thee weeks of this series are going to be important for me personally. I need to get better at slowing down so I have more "head space" to relate to God. It is going to be a fun series!

For any of you student pastors out there, we partner with XP3 for creative content and series direction. I have loved working with the xp3 team because of their value placed on small groups in youth ministry. I have learned the art of collaboration in order to be a better servant to the kids I lead each week. Go check out XP3.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

the joys of having no building

This weekend was huge for GCC. We figured out how to train our set up and tear down teams! We have grown so fast it has been hard to get a handle on this MAJOR issue. It only took three years but I think we hit on something that works for us this weekend. Karen Grizzard and Katrina Watts made the plan, our set up team leaders did the training, and IT WORKED! Here at Grace Community we rent Rossview High School each week so that means each week we have to set up and then tear down all our environments. We have amazing volunteers but it has been so difficult to ask new volunteers to come into the system and know what to do. If you are in a church that rents space you know how this goes. Here is what we did! We had dinner and training for our set up team Saturday night then we had lunch and training for the tear down team Sunday afternoon and dedicated time to both these teams. Why it took us three years to figure this out I am not sure but it worked. I think the fact that we have moved venues several times hurt our training process. We also thought we could train on Sunday mornings...THAT IS VERY HARD...this scared off many volunteers because it seemed so fast and confusing. We needed the extra time to encourage, and allow time for questions as we trained.

Here were the keys...provided food, designated time, allowed for tons of questions, and had a system that made sense in place before we did the training. ALSO the one thing we would do different is promote MORE. We evaluated the event today and we know we think we have a WINNER in this plan.

I think we will have a facility ONE DAY here at GCC but not having one and renting space makes us seek to be efficient, trust God, and equip volunteers to pull this off each week. Thanks to all of you out there who volunteer each week at your church. Thanks to all of you who serve at GCC! Because of you people encounter God each week in our gatherings. It is worth it!

Monday, February 23, 2009

adventures in cooking, hire me on the food network!

Here is some advice from a cooking pro...NOT...if you put the wrong ingredients in when you are cooking your cookies will not taste good. More on that in a minute! The principle applies to anything we do in life. When we do the wrong things, add the wrong ingredients to the mix of life things will not go well. So many time we are surprised at how things are going in life. I hear stuff like work sucks, my marriage sucks, my neighborhood if terrible, my kids and I do not get along, I do not like my church. When I ask folks to tell me why many times they have no clue! They have not stopped to ask why! They hate the results but they keep the madness going by never looking beyond the results. What are the ingredients involved in the situation that may be causing the bad results?

Kozbi, my daughter, and I decided to cook some cookies from a "Fairy" cookbook for kids. On our first try we misread...I misread the cookbook and put 1/8 a cup of salt into the mix instead of 1/8 a teaspoon. Salt is a great thing but when you put a CUP into the mix things turn out bad. We made the call to go ahead and cook them and see what would happen. We took one bite and hated the result. They were HORRIBLE. We decided to go ahead and try again and they turned out great and the proof is in that they have disappeared from our house! Koz and I learned the ingredients matter. Putting the right amount of stuff into our project made all the difference. it took a little time but we had fun and got it right and the result was GREAT! Here is the proof...(yes we used GREEN food coloring and that is powdered sugar ALL OVER THEM, more sugar = better cookies!)
If you find yourself stuck hating the results you see around your job, marriage, kids, or church stop and look at the ingredients involved. Be willing to make some changes and things just might get better.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

am I the only one?

The past month at Grace Community we have been in a series called Am I the Only One? There are some series that are defining moments for a church and this has been one of them for us. We have tackled fear, addiction, sexual sin, and depression. This next week we end the series by celebrating what God has done to bring healing in all our lives. Today was a huge day because I watched Chad one of our co pastors and his wife Christy talk about her fight with depression as the church was being planted three years ago. Talk about honesty! It was am amazing moment to hear about an honest struggle and have the pastors wife speak for how so many in the crowd feel everyday. Thanks Christy for being willing to speak for the hurting. Depression and anxiety are real and there is hope beyond the current circumstance. It was wild to hear about hope in the middle of a hard issue.

The best part of the entire series has been the freedom people have felt to talk about their private struggles. To find help when the feeling of isolation has been so strong is freedom. Freedom can be found when pain, hurt, or sin are exposed and dealt with. There is no healing found in hiding. For me, when I have been honest about my struggles, I have discovered God ready to bring healing. Our God is a God of hope, love and justice and He is there for us. Thanks to the Grace Community family for supporting this church as we try to meet people in the middle of struggle. Church should be the one place where it is always OK to be honest and find help. This is the kind of church I want my kids growing up in!

If you are out there and you want to catch up on this series go check out our podcast listed on iTunes or go to and get the messages from there.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

social networking?

Started this social networking thing with myspace, moved to facebook and now I am considering twitter. Please talk me out of twitter. I need help. This landscape is always going to be changing. I talk to tons of teens that are running from facebook as their primary site to network because of the ADULT factor. Sure they will have a facebook but it will not be their primary place to connect. Just wanted to remind everyone that methods of social networking will constantly change BUT this phenomenon is here to stay. Love this video, enjoy! I am hooked on facebook but this is funny. If you are reading this on facebook go to to check it out.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

defining reality for my family

I admit it, I am really on a defining reality kick. I read back over my blog yesterday and I thought about all the implications this leadership principle has for my home. It is so important that Chelsea and I both actively seek to define reality in each others life and for our kids lives. Think about it...

When our kids are scared of monster in the closet we have to define reality...

When our spouse feels like a failure because of a mistake at work we have to help define reality...

When our teenage son is not sure if he should date a certain girl and mom picks up on the confusion, mom has to define reality...

When our schedule are packed because of CONSTANT busyness mom and dad have to slow down and define reality for the home...

Leadership matters at home and you and I have choose to make it happen everyday. Really, what happens at home is the defines so much of a life well lived. We have to be there to help our family know what matters and embrace what is real and true.

"the first task of a leader is to define reality" - Max Dupree

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

define reality

One of the best books on leadership I have ever read is Leadership is an Art by Max Dupree. In the book he says that a leader's first responsibility is to define reality. I am in an define reality kind of mood. I think it has been brought on by my need to evaluate and figure out what is next for several of our family minister area's here at GCC. I also have some friends who are struggling to survive in organizations that ignore reality and ask people to live in the land of fictional happiness when the end is near. Whatever we do and where ever we lead we have to be ok with embracing the facts around us. It has to be OK to process and be vocal about good and bad news so we can see clearly where we need to go next. Vision and Strategy are amazing tools that push us forward, but until we define reality then we have no starting point. Until reality is defined we will never be able to measure forward progress. Without defining reality we just allow vision and our strategy to move us in circles.

The questions I am asking right now to help define reality come from all directions. Is what we are doing working? Are we connecting with people? Is the vision / mission being fulfilled? Is there a better way? Do we love our current organization strategy more than a new or old strategy that might push the vision forward? In our situation as a church, are people becoming more like Christ? All of these are hard questions and can hurt our pride. I am personally asking these questions and they hurt. They lead me to be responsible. Defining reality means I have to be accountable for my part of the adventure and call others to accountability. NO FUN. Defining reality means I have to ask questions, evaluate, and help others on the team to see exactly where we are. When this happens our team begin to move forward. This is the NOW WHAT moment where we allow Vision to inspire and strategy to be mapped out.

I love where we have been as a church but I refuse to stop evaluating. tweaking, dreaming, and hoping for a better day. We never arrive as a church. You never arrive in your organization. I am ready to ask some hard questions and I want to say today on February 17, 2009 that in the coming months and years you will see changes in our ministry because we stopped and defined reality. Reality is hard but it leads to healthy forward motion. I love healthy forward motion around here because it means people's lives are being changed. It's worth it.

"the first task of a leader is to define reality" - Max Dupree

Monday, February 16, 2009

Axiom by Bill Hybels

Got this book a few weeks ago and planned to just read one leadership thought a day. I did well for about three or four days and then I could not stop taking in several at a time. I love books that allow the reader to get in the mind of great leaders and this may be Hybel's greatest mentoring tool yet. The book is packed with insight from his years of leading Willow Creek Church, and I was constantly blown away from the insight. No matter how you feel about the Willow Creek mode of doing church the leadership principles that guide the Willow Creek team are very helpful. There is so much packed into the book that will help any leader invest in the people around them. Go get this book and start reading it. I have started Mad Church Disease by Anne Jackson and it has been great so far. I can already tell Anne's new book is going to be a great read. I have thoughts to share after a few pages read but I will wait until I finish.

If you are out there and you work at a job ANYWHERE I have to tell you, GET TO READING. As I look back on life I am so blessed to have been able to be mentored by countless people through their books. Right now I cannot set up a meeting with Craig Groeschel but I can read his blog and the books he writes. I can learn from Jim Collins through his books but I cannot bring him in for a staff meeting to talk to my team. If you want to grow as a person, READ! Read blogs, read the Bible, read leadership books, read fiction and nonfiction, just start today. I meet a ton of guys who give me the "I do not like to read" excuse. It is hard for me to hear when guys and gals go there because reading is a discipline just like working out. I said for years that I just did not LIKE working out. That is just not good enough. I need exercise and I know my brain brains need exercise and reading is a huge part of that process. Go to and have fun!

Friday, February 13, 2009

the weekend wrap...

Ok, weekends for me mean Friday and Saturday and it is going to be a fun weekend. Valentines Day is this weekend and that is a big deal in a house full of women. Got some great gift ideas for Koz and Kel and Chelsea and I are going on a little Nashville date Saturday. Guys, do not wait till this one dumb day to let your girls know you love them but remember, DO NOT MESS IT UP EITHER. It does matter, so go for it. My mom is coming in for a few days and I really miss her. My kids miss their Nana, I miss my MOM. Pumped she will be here.

At GCC this week we continue the 'Am I the Only One" series. God is really at work right now in our church. I wish I could talk about some of the upcoming plans for each week but for all you GCCers I do not want to ruin the moment. Just trust me, you do not want to miss a week of this series or the next one coming up called "Epic." On the student ministry front, we finish our series called DOUBT this coming Wednesday and I really excited about the service. Remix is going to be great next week. Ok done with GCC talk for the week. Here comes Sunday!

On the TV front...24, the Office, Lost, and American Idol have all been amazing. WOW...tonight on the office when Kelly took the nap was amazing AND my family is pumped about the 36 folks that made it in Idol. Our DVR is burning it up right now!

I have been in the MAC world for over a year, love the new design but man my MacBook is still going strong. The best tech decision I made last year was coming into the light! Do not think I can go back. I have a Dell and a MacBook in the office but I could not make it without the Mac. I am in for good. The Bayne HOME will switch next!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

made the call

Sometimes you just have to make a decision. Last night was an odd night at REMIX. We had storms all day, trees were knocked down, traffic lights out, TRAFFIC WAS CRAZY in Clarksville. I just made the call and we called off REMIX around 5:30. We text messaged, emailed, and called people to spread the word and it worked for the most part. I know some of you do not call anything off for anything but when you have teens driving in for an event during the week sometimes you just have to think like a parent and not a youth pastor. Would I want Kozbi when she is 16 out driving around with the conditions. The answer was no, that helped me make the call. We also would have had at most half of the teens there we usually have. I hate for that many people to miss a week of this series. Sometimes you just have to go with your gut feeling and make the call. I hate to mess the flow up of our weekly youth environment but I had a bad feeling when it took some of band over and hour to get to our venue to band practice. Seeing the wind do this to my kids trampoline that morning also helped me...yes, it bent the frame and tossed it in another yard!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

my KOZ!

Last Friday Kozbi and I went to a Father / Daughter Ball put on by the Hope Pregnancy Center here in Clarksville. The Hope team did an amazing job and got to see over 600 dads and daughters connect over the weekend! It was an amazing night for Koz and I to connect. We went out for dinner with some other dads and daughters then hit the ball. Yes, we got dressed up, we had some dessert, got to hang out, and we got our dance on. The best part was getting to let my girl know that she is my princess! I am so blessed to be Dad to 2 wonderful daughters. Being DAD is the best. I love my Koz and Kel!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

go get this TODAY...

Over the past few years I have to say Mute Math is by far my favorite band to hit the scene. I have never heard or seen a band with this kind of energy and creativity. There is not a track on their first album I do not like. So, go check them out. Go get this little EP and enjoy. New CD drops summer 2009 and tour I will not miss in the Fall.

Monday, February 9, 2009

my boss just does not get it...

Have you ever said that? I know you have thought it! I was reminded this week that most of the time we are responsible for that frustration. Ok, hear me out on this one because some of you out there have terrible supervisors and work in terrible environments that you hate and the only advice I have for you is to patiently (IN THIS ECONOMY) look for your next opportunity. I was listening to one of the break out sessions from Orange 2008 on the drive to Nashville and had an OH Yea moment. Jeanne Stevens,in the session on Leading You, said that to lead up to your supervisor you have to speak their language! Thanks Jeanne for reminding me of that idea because as look back it is so true. Every supervisor has a way they like to communicate and if we want to have influence and connection with them we have to learn to speak their language. We get frustrated because we want them to think, act, communicate and lead like us. Because we LEAD we want everyone to think, act, communicate, and lead like us. Some supervisors like email, some like to talk on the phone, some like lots of details, some hate details, some text, some like paper reports and memos, I guess some people like letters...just kidding. I have worked for some amazing leaders and as I look back they all liked to get info in different ways and at different paces. It is just a fact that if I want to connect with my supervisor (aka BOSS) them I have to learn that leadership tempo and language. If we are going to work well with our supervisors we have to speak their language! Thanks Jeanne for reminding me of that truth and free plug for the Orange Conference...our team is going back in 2009, you need to check it out!

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Cross Street LIVE is back Feb. 8 / 5PM @ RHS

Cross Street Live is back and we are stoked. CSl happens this Sunday night at 5 PM at Rossview High. So you can get a feel for CSl we wanted to post our commercial we are going to run Sunday morning. We feel like this is one of the most important environments we lead as a church because it unites families and helps them talk about God. The biggest spiritual influence in a child's life is mom and dad and at CSL we get to help empower that influence. We have a great team to pull this off each month and if you want to see more about our kids environments click on the CSL logo above. So here is the commercial, we compressed it a ton so it would run fast on your Mac, or your PC if you must...

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

choosing balance

In the middle of a wild week how do you choose what gets done? Remix and Cross Street Live go down this week and they are both going to be amazing. I get to work with some amazing leaders in both environments and it is going to be fun to see what God does. The bottom line is that with this week I could stay at work, 17 hours every day of the week and still not get it all done. In a packed week with big deadlines something has to give. Kozbi, Kelyn and Chelea still need their dad and husband. God still waits for me to spend time with Him. I still need to hit the gym and eat right. Yea, I want the events this week to be amazing. I am going to give both events 100% and then trust our team and God to do amazing things. I also want to make sure I choose what is most important and not turn my back on things that matter in the long run. The long run matters. This week and these event will be done in a few days. I have to choose balance. When I do not choose balance I reveal I am not living by faith and trusting God. I am trying to get there and I hate I am just now learning how to make this happen in my career, personal, and family life. I have to make the right choices.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

just say HELLO!

Having lunch today and a gentleman came into my restaurant, well my Subway, well the one I go to 3 or 4 times a week. I recognized the guy from as a leader from another local church and remembered that we had met once before. Not sure if he saw me or remembered me but he sat down right beside me. In that moment I have this internal discussion of should I say hello or just eat my sub of the day. I chose to say hi, we talked for a while, we ate our subs and I made my way back to the office. Through several occurrences lately I have been reminded of the power of simply being friendly to the people I cross paths with. It takes little to be self centered and not pay attention to folks God places in our path BUT things just turn out better when I look around and choose the friendly route. I know FRIENDLY sounds kind of sissy-ISH but you never know when those choices will pay off. Never forget people are watching and people remember. A kind word, a forgiving spirit, a little encouragement, or a positive attitude go a long way in how others see you. Just a Tuesday thought...BE NICE PEOPLE BE NICE! (screamed out like Michael Scott on the office)

Monday, February 2, 2009

random Monday thoughts!

  • What an amazing start to the new series AM I THE ONLY ONE, yesterday was one of the clearest messages dealing with the issue of sex that I have ever heard. Go check out the message on the podcast at . Chad, amazing job and the worship team team did an amazing job!
  • This is one of those INVITE people series. Yes if you go to GCC this is perfect. We are dealing with real questions people have about life and yes God has help for the hurting. The news flash is that we are all hurt and need His help. Thankful for a church that embraces the brokenness we all feel and leads us to healing Christ offers!
  • We launch a new series at REMIX this week that deals with doubt. I am really looking forward to see how God works. We all doubt and we need to know what to do with it. Should be a fun adventure, I am so blessed to get to invest in the teens at Relevant Student Ministry, they are amazing.
  • Yes I picked the winner last night, now when is the draft, lets go TITANS!
  • Cross Street Live is back this month on Sunday @ 5PM at Rossview! It is going to b so much fun. Will be working on that all week for sure.
  • We are doing a staff dinner tonight, looking forward to hanging out with the team. Should be a fun night out. We have an amazing team here at GCC.
  • Hope you saw our pictures from the Viva Catie concert! I am still blown away from that night. Thanks to everyone for uniting around a cause so important. Since everyone is effected by cancer we should all be a part of the solution!
  • Jesus is amazing...reading the Bible today about His march to the cross in the book of Mark and it still blows me away. Leader, servant, savior, helper, healer, truth, love, are all words that describe the Jesus I see in the Bible. I can give my life for that!