"Fenrick: The Handicap Leprechaun" - The Lost Tapes

PRAISE THE LORD!! IT HAS BEEN FOUND!!!

I am ecstatic to announce to you that the original recording of "Fenrick's First Adventure" has been found! After having given up all hope that this video would ever be seen again, it has now been resurrected. And not only has it been found, but also restored for viewing with modern technology!

Though I had nothing personally to do with this particular video, somewhere down the line it was transferred into my custody. Now, after cleaning my desk drawer at work I have uncovered it in it's original form. Though unfortunately this "original form" was that of a "Video CD"...?? I know right? What in the world is that? Well long story short it was originally created on a Windows PC(bleh) and required such technology to be able to view it again. And now, thanks to my buddy Daniel at Germantown Baptist, it is made public for all to glory in again! (much applause for Daniel).

So without further ado... I present the original, in unaltered form.... Fenrick's First Adventure.

Here is also another video that we made starring Fenrick. This one was never lost, but still provides quality entertainment if you know anything about student revivals.

Piper and the Glory of God

For of those of you who know me, you know that John Piper is one of my greatest spiritual heroes. And for those of you that know Piper you know that the glory of God is the loudest proclamation of his heart to the point that it's almost a cliche within his sermons. Needless to say, this message from the SBC pastor's conference last week was no different. Though he took a different approach than i'd heard him take before, the result was nothing short of causing me to reflect on the God-centeredness of God. I will say though that this time my mind wandered down many paths after the message finished. Many thoughts entered my mind concerning the righteousness of Christ and his imputation of that on us and how that shines light on our purpose in this life. But nonetheless, I once again came to the ends of those paths with more breathtaking assurance that the glory of God is the ultimate desire of God, and the ultimate provider of satisfaction for those that make it their ultimate desire as well.

I pray that this desire become my strongest pursuit in life.

Site Launch: X-tended Missions Network

Just finished a new site design for my friends at the X-tended Missions Network. The XMN is a Southern Baptist regional association for North Mississippi. They are support partners for us at Revision Church as well the ONE8 Church Planting Network.

I wised up and teamed with Jason Charnes on this one and he really added a lot of great elements that I couldn't have accomplished by myself. As always, it's powered by Wordpress and we used the Biznizz Theme by Woo Themes, which has turned out to offer a powerhouse of great features for what we wanted to accomplish. I really enjoyed implementing the photos that they wanted to display. In fact, the way the whole site is very photography-driven is one of my favorite parts about it.

Check it out!

DNOW 2011

  We just finished up Disciple-NOW at Germantown Baptist. I'm not going to lie, it was a pretty incredible weekend. A DNOW unlike any other DNOW I've experienced actually. The Student staff steered a different direction than we typically have before... and the response was amazing! I'm generally skeptical of emotional, mountain-top events. But I felt this time that the maturity of the students at this church really culminated through the weekend and they expressed that outwardly more than I've seen before. One of the more powerful things for me to see was one night when we gave out blind folds and had the students worship with them on. The goal was for them to be free of distractions and know that no one was watching or judging them(except the camera:) ). Seeing them choose their physical mode of worship was very moving. Here's the recap video I put together as well as the animated intro video we used to kick off the weekend.

For my DSLR film guys: I rented a RedRock Micro Captain Stubling Rig for the weekend and it worked great! It was my first time with a follow-focus and I've realized it's really the only way to go when shooting documentary, hand-held content. I guess truthfully it's the only way to go period. I also purchased the bargain-buy Cannon 50mm 1.4 which is a no-brainer for beginners. I wouldn't have been able to shoot all the low-light content without it.

For my AE animators: The intro video was a fun little challenge I forced myself through. I made myself animate the tree from scratch. When I first saw the logo that was created by our T-shirt designers I thought I could just cheat by incorporating Andrew K's "Evolution" swirls to get the growth effect. But that wasn't enough for me. I knew there was a way to do it for real. Luckily I found out when looking through the files that most of the logo was the same identical branch replicated. So I used Write-on to make it grow and scaled the leaves individually. Then I replicated the branch and got it pretty dang close to matching the original shape of the designer. I felt much better afterwards.

The Testimony of Suffering

I watched Braveheart tonight for the first time in a while. God used it to reveal to me something I hadn’t realized before. That suffering is the absolute proof of the severity of a cause or truth. What I mean by this is that when someone endures the most extreme conditions of suffering, at that moment they become the most visible evidence that what they are suffering for is worthwhile. Through your pain, people will see the seriousness of the cause that you are are suffering for. In the case of William Wallace this cause was Freedom. And it wasn’t until he endured agonizing physical torture that his people realized the importance of that Freedom.

testimony_of_suffering

Before Wallace was killed, his Scottish countrymen chose to simply live with the fact that they were being persecuted, pillaged, raped and murdered by the ruling English. To them, freedom wasn’t worth the pain that would come to their own skin if they fought back. But in Wallace they soon realized something different. They realized that freedom from persecution was so incredibly important that some people would endure the most excruciating treatment on earth before they would deny this importance. All Wallace had to do was tell one tiny lie, and he would be spared. Just simply fibbing about the fact that in his heart freedom was the most important thing in the world would’ve allowed him to be rid of his agony. But it wasn’t worth it.

Denying that freedom is the most valuable thing in this world was not worth ending the most intense pain Wallace ever felt in his life.

Now it’s not hard to see the parallel between this story and the life of Christ. But my eyes were opened tonight to the importance of the suffering Jesus went through before His death. The fact is, being willing to just die for something doesn’t carry as much weight as being willing to suffer for something…especially for the Christian. Just because someone puts a bullet in your head doesn’t automatically make you a martyr. What creates power in the story of a martyr is the breadth of pain that person is willing to endure before giving in. The amount of endurance he/she carries without yelling “uncle” is what speaks testimony to the importance of their cause. The fact is, Jesus experienced both mental and physical suffering to arguably the deepest extremes humanly possible before his death. On the night before his crucifixion, He was so distraught with fear and grief that he sweated blood.  And before being nailed to the cross, His flesh was so torn that He was barely recognizable.

I believe that physical bodily torture is the most extreme of pains that exist on this earth. Because we are made in God’s image, when someone physically harms another person, they are literally ripping apart the image of God. Thinking about this tonight convicted me that my tolerance level for any kind of physical suffering is drastically minute. I would most likely be one of the first to give in if having to endure pain for the cause of Christ. I can barely jog a quarter-mile before having to stop for a breather. And because I’m also really claustrophobic, if someone locks me in a small box or a straight jacket for more than 20 seconds then it’s over. For me that’s what suffering is and I just pray that if one day I must face such persecution that God would sustain me through it.

For the Christian, death is not so much an example of faithfulness as it is the reward. True suffering, though different for everyone, is the ultimate testimony to the value of the Gospel in your life. This is why Paul counted it a pleasure to suffer for the sake of Christ, because there’s no greater display of the importance of the Gospel than enduring the most excruciating circumstances for believing it. Lord please change my attitude on this and give me long-lasting endurance to suffer for the sake of your Truth.