So Long April, You Were Beautiful

Hello High Places!

Can you believe April has basically come and gone already? This year seems to be flying by! And it’s been a great year for High Places -- and a great month. For example, last night I was talking with Tony South who’s been having a lot of work responsibilities lately and I called just to say we were thinking of him. I was so pleased to hear that so many in our church had already reached out to Tony, completely on their own, to say the exact same things.

Folks, that is an incredible barometer for a healthy church. When we love one another and when our love is practiced not just in words, but in actions. The connections we make with each other and the ways we encourage one another throughout the week is a demonstration of the love God has given us. I am so excited and so happy for this church and the way God is working among us currently. Let’s continue to seek Him and be willing to follow Him as He leads.

I really want to ask for your support through the coming month of May. Martin gave us all a great gift by sharing his heart these past two weeks. What you may not know is how much I needed time to clear some space to hear from God regarding our upcoming theme. The gift Martin gave me – and continues to give me every week as a friend and mentor – was exactly what I needed.

God is speaking very clearly to me and I am ready to begin unpacking the direction He is revealing for the coming weeks. You may recall during the State of the Church Sunday in January that one of things God was saying to me for 2016 was that this could be a great year for us to shift from being just a “Welcoming” church to becoming an “Invitational” church.

Becoming “invitational” is about mission, vision, and intention. I might even call it a non-accidental kind of welcoming. In other words, we haven’t just welcomed someone to the Jesus-party at High Places, we have actually personalized an invitation…. but then, that’s kind of the hard part in some ways.

The questions boil down to:

-- Who are we inviting?

-- What are we inviting them to?

-- How are we extending this invitation?

As I said, God has been speaking, and I feel the need to begin this Sunday by personalizing with you a little bit, perhaps in ways that make me slightly uncomfortable. I need to model risk, authenticity, and transparency as methods of communicating the concepts of being an “invitational” church before I spend a month talking more deeply about them.

I hope you will commit to be a part of what God is doing and is about to do in High Places over the coming weeks. I hope you will be present as His Church this Sunday as we open the door on this very important, and I believe divinely inspired, next step for our church family.

Other items of interest:

Mother’s Day is May 8th – an incredible opportunity to be invitational. Bring mom, or if your mother has passed, I want to encourage us to find someone who’s been lovingly mother-like to us and invite them as we pause to honor one of God’s greatest gifts to us – Mom.

Baby Dedications traditionally happen on Mother’s Day. If you have a newborn and would like to have him/her take part in this special service, please notify me as soon as you can.

Friends of the Grove Community Partner Champagne Brunch is scheduled for Saturday morning May 14. We may need help with this event, please stand-by for more information!

Graduation Celebration at Clark Park is tentatively set for May 22.

We will have a Leadership Meeting in May, so when that date is confirmed, leaders please make every effort to attend.

Off the Wall Youth Ministries continue to be hopping and we are currently in a full-on search mode for potential camp counselors. If you can DEVOTE a week to simply LOVING on teenagers and following a very simple plan on how to show that love, then we desperately need you.

Thank you again High Places for being so amazing. God is extraordinarily good to us. Praise Him.



“I know your sufferings and your poverty, but you are RICH.” -- Jesus