Defining Faith: Belief and Reliance on the Word of God

Faith only works when we believe and rely on the Word of God. Nothing more, nothing less! Pastor John Darnell continues the SUBSTANCE series by building a working definition of what true faith is and how it works.


Open Mind, Insert Thoughts

As this posts, my bride and I should be in the air on our way to Atlanta.

This will be our first time at Catalyst.  I am excited and looking forward to hearing from a variety of speakers from an even wider variety of backgrounds.  Some are familiar and some will be new.  I expect to be challenged in a number of ways.

I feel like it’s the chance to visit a “mental DisneyLand”.

The importance of being poured into cannot be overstated.  So, my question for you… who do you look to for inspiration, challenge, or insight?  Who, where, when do you have to invest towards a better version of yourself?

That can be the difference between innovation/freshness and stagnation/irrelevance.

The waters are stirring.  It’s time to jump on in.

Savoring Lost or Learning to Enjoy the Simple Things in Life

Of all the things that are taking place in the world at large, the end of a television show probably doesn’t rank that high. I can admit that. I have a completely obsessive relationship with LOST, but I am sober enough to acknowledge that in the light of the global, local, and personal issues we all navigate through on a daily basis.

However, as we near the end, I, like most fans of LOST, are expecting answers. After six seasons of polar bears and DHARMA hatches and Hurley birds and smoke monsters and weird, wet backwards talking Walt apparitions, we kinda feel entitled.

But it is that desire (NEED…?) for answers that may just make what should be the culmination of a long, strange journey anti-climactic and disappointing. Not because that the show is no longer entertaining. It is now competing with my own unrealistic and increasingly high expectations of what it SHOULD be.

How sad that I could miss out on something amazing simply because I could not set aside my own thoughts and expectations enough to receive it.

Yes, I know it’s only a television show. But what about other things?

What else do we miss enjoying simply because we haven’t learned to make the mental adjustment to make the most of them?

Notes from the start of the journey

I’ve been feeling completely challenged.  So many things are happening and requiring focus and attention.  I have my neck outstretched in earnest anticipation expecting God to do some amazing things within and through me, my family, and with community of Vivid Church.

But I also feel sorta stuck.  Like somehow someone accidentally kicked the gear shift into park.  And I honestly don’t know exactly how it happened.  But I know that I refuse to continue in it.

And I’ve questioned myself as to the cause.  Did I do something that has moved me into a holding pattern and away from the flow of God?  Is there something attempting to hold me back?  Does moving forward simply require a higher level of consecration and dedication?

Regardless of the cause, there is a single answer.  Fast.  

If I’ve mistakenly moved, a time of fasting provides for honesty before God allowing humility and restoration.  If there is spiritual warfare, fasting works to break down strongholds.

So, why share this?  As I said, I’m expecting some major things from God.  And I thought it would be fun to let you in on the journey rather than having me come back in a few weeks and try to recapture everything.  

Also, I want to encourage you to join me if you are feeling stuck.  Let’s spend some time away from feeding our stomachs and getting before God.  

I want to know about your journey.  We can travel together.

Elizabeth Gilbert on genius | Video on

Amazing thoughts on the creative process and the artist…

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A Day in the Life

Tweet, tweet…

  • 07:54 Vivid Church pre-launch Bible Study this AM… so pumped to take the nexy step in the vision… #
  • 16:50 good times this AM @VividChurch… can’t wait for Community Group tomorrow night… #
  • 21:19 nap is coming back to haunt me… freakin’ wide awake… #
  • 22:14 dropped the Grammy’s long ago… watching documentary on the Supreme Court… I am smart… SMRT… SMRT… I am so smart… SMRT #

A Day in the Life

Tweet, tweet…

  • 11:00 ran to a meeting only to find no one else was there…consolation is getting to Saturday AM cartoons with #1 son… #
  • 18:37 fish sticks and "Evan Almighty"… another exciting night at the Darnell household… #
  • 20:15 really enjoyed "Evan Almighty"… #