–¬†Happy 2016!
– Been a while since I did a mind-dump, but I figured I’d get one in on this first week of the new year.
– I still feel like January 1, 2015 just happened.
– I guess time flies.
– I’m not making any resolutions this year, but I am anticipating a great year.
– Christmas was amazing this year for our family.
– We stayed home — no traveling — and had a lot of fun together as a family.
– Everyone’s Christmas presents were thoughtful and fun.
– Here’s a gift from Molly that brought me to tears.

– I’ve been thinking about why it was so moving to me.
– I think it’s because it represents the life that we’ve formed together in Arizona.
– We love and miss Colorado and Ohio, but our home is Arizona.
– This is where God has called us and this is where we’re building a family.
– To embrace that together feels beautiful.
– It’s been nice to not preach the last few weeks, though I’m ready to get back at it.
РThe time out of the pulpit made room for tremendous messages by Joe Leavell and Tyler Johnson, and also gave me some time to work on some other important things.
– I had a good retreat day, taking stock of 2015 and looking ahead to 2016.
– Also did some work for seminary — slowly catching up.
– And I finished writing a leader’s guide for our next series on the book of Judges.
– I’m really pumped about this new series.
– I think it will be eye-opening in a bunch of ways.
– I’m also going to try something new for this series by creating a special follow-up email list called Judges: Digging Deeper.
– Each week I’ll send some exclusive bonus content that didn’t make its way into the sermon.
– Over 100 people have already opted-in.
– You can too by going here.
– I’ll send you an e-book Introduction to the Book of Judges right away and then more stuff each week of the series.
– All the most important stuff will be in the sermons (I hope), but some extra thought and resources never hurt anybody.
– I’m writing this from Vancouver, BC where I’m with a few other Redemption pastors visiting the leaders at St. Peter’s Fireside.
– It’s a church plant we’re supporting, so we came to spend some time with them and encourage each other.
– We connected through the Redeemer City to City partnership, and it’s been a great trip so far.
– Here’s a video about the church:

– I think we’re encouraging them, but I know they’re encouraging us.
– It’s helpful to be in a context that is so thoroughly post-Christian.
–¬†Alastair (the church planter) said that less than 5% of people here even consider going to church on Christmas Eve.
– Pretty different than Phoenix.
– But as American culture becomes less influenced by Christendom, it’s helpful to learn about how people are faithfully planting the gospel and doing church.
– We’re meeting up with their team for dinner, so I’ve got to run.
– Whatever you’re doing…do it in the strength God supplies.
– Peace.

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