Showing posts from 2012

Merry Christmas and a Hawaiian New Year!

Merry Christmas to everyone! I know this is a little late, but at least I got it in this year. As we approach 2013, I want to ask all of you to join us for 40 days of prayer. We are asking any believer in Christ Jesus to join us in this journey. We will be praying for our church plant and the surrounding areas and would like as many people as possible to take our request to our Great God with us. You will be asked to pray three times a day. The first in your quiet time, the second with another prayer partner during each day (maybe call someone up and pray over the phone) and the third with your family during dinner or before bed.

We believe this will not only help us engage and change this community but all of our hearts. We also believe that it will help us all see God in a new and fresh light.

Please click on the link to join us, you will receive an email each night for the following day.…

The Five Great Commissions Part Two

The Great Commission in 5 parts - part 1

What NOT to do as a church planter!'

Yes this post is about some of the many things I have learned NOT to do. I am learning through trial and tribulation in hopes that those who trust us for leadership in future church plants will learn from our mistakes. I hope you all read this and it spurs you to remember the life lessons that Jesus has given you and that you pass these lessons on. So here we go:

1. The most important: Do nothing without speaking to your Daddy first.

So many times I have made the mistake of guessing to charging ahead without talking to our Father in heaven. It has caused a ton of heartache and pain. If I would have talked to Him first, He would guided my heart to better decisions or to the decision to wait on His work to be complete before He has me do anything. I have learned this a few times. I have allowed others to talk me into something only to have it blow up on me later. There is an incredible grace waiting on the Lord to direct your path and I have more than once learned it is better to be wit…

The aftermath of an Election and I mention alot of names!

Being here in Hawaii for these last 8 months has given me some new opinions on politics and the church. As a pastor I am learning how people react to politics when it comes to the church. Many times politics and the church are not separate issues. I have been amazed by the incredible amount of people within the church that get excited every four years when a presidential election comes around (some of you actually talk about it all the time and get excited when I speak against your candidate, but who's keeping track). As I watched the election results yesterday afternoon (yes being 5 hours behind has its advantages like not losing sleep) and as I spent the evening helping a friend serve food to a candidate's party I have come to several conclusions about the church and our recent election. Some of these I find humorous and hope you do to. Some of these sadden me and causes me to pray harder for the church and our country. Before I share these know that this is not an attack on…

Oct. 31st Rocked!

So today during election day I thought it would be appropriate to reflect back on last week. Many of you know that we held an outreach last week in Kapolei. We were invited to use the front yard of one of our team members in a Hawaiian Homestead (a place where it is only lawful for Hawaiians to own the land and build their houses). I only expected to see maybe 100-150 people and bought supplies accordingly. If you know me, I always buy extra for the next event because it saves money to buy more than less. Well I am glad I did, we met over 500 people that night. We gave all of our Shave Ice out (400 things of it), almost all of our popcorn (300+) and all the hot dogs we purchased (200, yeah I blew that one). I had the honor of sharing the Gospel to hundreds of people at once. We had over 100 people register for prizes and had 50 families indicate that they wanted some sort of contact from us. We will be following up on this for months.

This Sunday our core team will begin to worship to…

New Church Name, New Blog Post Name

Since we have changed our church name, I thought it was time to change my blog post name. This is no longer but is now If you have the other name saved, please save this one instead. Thanks for praying for us and I hope you are as excited as we are about our new identity!

Pastor Shawn

New name

Hello prayer partners and readers,

I am excited to announce that we have changed our church name to "the Church at Kapolei". We believe we needed a new name that was simple and gave us a different identity than the other churches in the area. Months back, I had begun to notice a bunch of small churches with the name "grace" in them. As I began to engage community leaders about our church, they would confuse us with those churches. I brought this to our pastoral team and after a few weeks of prayer we decided on a name change. We believe this simple name will match our simple mindset for our church. If you are giving to us right now, nothing is changing yet in that area. Soon this blog name will change to another name and I will inform you of that change when it happens. Thanks for your prayers and your love. We are excited to see what God is doing.

On another note, Nick and Suzy Killin will be moving here Nov. 7th. Nick will be leading our media and administration …

Exciting things happening with us!

Hello friends and family,

Thank you for your prayers, encouragement and support. God is up to some great things here. First, Jason and Veronica Rodgers are traveling across the U.S. with their family to move here next week. Pray for their journey and kids. Also, we are working through the next phase which is meeting as a core group on Sunday mornings. We hope to launch this phase in November. Nick and Suzy Killin are preparing to move here in November also.

Last week a couple of the men in our group went to Hickam Airforce Base and handed out shave ice to single airmen. We met quite a few men and women doing life alone and have some big dreams to support and reach out to them. Next month we are praying through a Halloween outreach in the Hawaiian Village in Kapolei. Pray that we can pull this off.

God is teaching me tons of things. I am realizing everyday that I am not capable to do the things God wants of me and that I am to surrender myself to Him and allow the Spirit to do those th…

God's sweet words are sometimes spoken loudly!

We have just begun our 7th month here in Hawaii. We wait with great expectation for Jason and Roni Rodgers to move here in a couple of weeks and for Nick and Suzy to be right behind them. God is doing some great things with these couples. Their support has kicked in a little more and they are both buying their tickets soon. Though there is so much to do before and when they get here, we are honored that God is bringing them to serve along side us. Pray for the rest of their support, both couple have less than 25% of their monthly support and still are raising their seed money. God answered big for us in the last month we lived in Ohio and we are expecting God to do bigger things with these couples. Many have told us that they will not be able to raise their support and I just say "watch God work it out".

Last week we had our largest group in our small group. 15 adults and 13 children were there. We had 3 people not able to come and still had a full house and almost full back…

Back to Ohio soon!

It has been one heck of a week or 12. I feel like I haven't slept in a month and realize that so much is going on around me. Sleep has been so bad that I haven't surfed since Abby and her parents went back to Ohio (its all her fault, just kidding). Really I haven't surfed because I am a social creature and haven't found anyone else to go with me yet. As I write, I am overlooking Pearl Harbor from a coffee shop just 5 miles from their. The scenery is incredible as I can see the Harbor, the ocean and the mountains all around. God's creation is simply amazing and wondrous.

As of this week, we will be in our tenth week of Bible Study. We are entering into Colossians 1:29-2:2 tonight with the background of "its all about Jesus". Tullian Tchvijdian proclaims Colossians to be "Jesus + Nothing = Everything", which couldn't sum up this book better. We are all learning so much about our place in Christ and our identity which is found in Jesus and not …

My emotions are at opposite ends today!

So this morning (1 am) I woke up and walked downstairs for the first time in 2 months to an empty downstairs. What an eerie feeling as 2 months of ministry with Abby Barham came to a close yesterday. Abby and her parents flew back to the mainland at 7:30 Hawaii time last night. Michelle and I are a roller coaster of emotions today. On one hand, we are thankful for God loving us through our family and friends who have traveled from the mainland to be with us. However, on the other hand, we have heavy hearts because those friends and families are not here anymore. I have been reflecting all morning on how much God loves us and how He has an incredible plan for us. He knew we needed to have Abby in our house for those months, but He also knew we needed to rely on Him more than we do people. What a great paradox of emotions! Thankful that my Savior Jesus Christ loves us and has a path He is laying out for us. Pray for the next four weeks as we continue our Bible study on Colossians, coach…

Let's be real for a moment or maybe for the rest of our lives?

One thing I have learned about myself on this journey is how selfish I am. Each day I live here in Hawaii and move through the hours, I see that much of my life is built on what I want or what comforts I love. I am realizing more and more each day how unsatisfying living for me is. As someone who has been marked with Christ, I find myself sick of things I try to put into my life for comfort, realizing how shallow and how false these things are. Our small group has been studying Colossians and God is revealing so much to me. Paul, the writer of Colossians (by the prompting of the Holy Spirit), says that his life has been completely transformed by the Gospel of Jesus Christ, in that the thing he thought he was to destroy has become the reason he lives (Colossians 1:24). This leads me to ask myself how the Gospel has transformed my life and how I am living for the Gospel. Can I tell you it is so easy to impress church people! People are at awe because I moved my family to a place away fr…

This means WAR!

Friends, family and countrymen .... I write this while my heart is being torn and pulled at. We have been under a tremendous amount of attacks these past two weeks. The enemy has been trying to get us to quit and head back to Ohio. It has been a horrible week so far in fighting my sin and temptation. I feel like the sermon on Romans 7 that I preaches at Urbancrest a while back is being preached back to me with no victory. It has been a tough time getting motivated and allowing Christ to love through me. Michelle has been hurting also, with feelings of homesickness. I kept thinking that I should just go lead worship somewhere and disappear into the sea of mundane churches. It has been hard, BUT!

My God is so good. Last night we were able to have dinner with one of the families in our Bible Study and they blessed us so much. They fed Michelle and I an incredible dinner then shared a Canadian board game with us (in which I want to play now) and let us watch a movie with them. It allowed …

God is good, even when we don't get it

I am so amazed at the grace and love that God through The Spirit displays to me and through me. Last week we had two families in our first bible study and I have to admit that I was a little disappointed with the turn out. We had verbal commitments from about 20 people and only 7 others showed up. However, as this week has gone by, the Lord Jesus has shown me that He is growing something bigger than I can grow and that He is putting together a team of people that are for His purposes and not just to have a religious institution they can lean on when in trouble. I am so pumped about this week, whether we shrink or grow because of what I see God doing around us. On Sunday, I had the opportunity to preach to my friend's church "The Gathering" (James Shiroma). I preached about the importance of Fatherhood and Biblical Manhood using Ephesians 5:25 as the essence of our example in Christ. As I was preaching, I was begging God to bring grace through this message and not condemn…

Hopefully It Begins

Last week we had 10 people from Ohio help us meet people and pass out Shave Ice in preparation of the Bible Study we are starting in our home June 14th. It was a great week to hang out with people I knew and a great opportunity to meet some I did not know well. Our family were tremendously blessed by their coming and serving with us. I miss Ohio more today than before they came and find myself extremely favored by God to have people love us.

But now is the time to get ready for tomorrow. I have been nervous all week. Questions have been in my head all week such as: does God really want to use me? is He really going to bring people? am I about to become a lead pastor? I am full of nerves and I know what most of you would say: TRUST GOD. But before some of you decide to say this to me, let me ask you a question? Have you relied on God to bring people to a Bible Study that will begin and set the tone for the church you will be a part of planting? I am again back to relying on God for all…

My Husband is so good at what He does

I have been reading this book called "Grace Walk" by the author Steve McVey. It is simply rocking my world and helping me move from a law based Christian life (which is not the Christian life) to a love relationship with Christ. One of the statements that he makes in the book is that he moved from being a maid to Jesus (trying to do stuff for Jesus) to being the bride of Jesus (enjoying intimacy with Christ and just being with Him). I have watched Jesus (my spiritual husband) do the most incredible things in front of and through me this week.

Yesterday, I decided to go to the beach and read, thinking that the waves would give me a calm time reading. When I got to white plains two things immediately stuck out and got my attention (there goes my reading). First, there were tents set up there with a group called This is an organization that helps those with disabilities to surf. I watched a gentlemen that was in a wheelchair (it seems that he had no strength in …

God is rocking it here!

The last week has been incredible. I have seen God open up and invite us into people's lives. I am so excited, I do run around this Star Bucks shouting GLORY (Joe Veal'ish). I have been coaching volleyball here in Kapolei and God gave me an God appointment at the airport with one of the player's parents last week Monday. Then last night, a parent on our flag football team asked me what I did. I got to share our vision for our church and invited him to bible study. At first I thought he blew me off, but at the end of practice he asked when we were starting and told me he is bringing his wife with him. Are you kidding me? God did that and has allows us to invite other people to come over for dinner beginning next week. God has been rocking it! Today I had a two hour conversation with a man I will identify as Mr E ( he seems very influential here and I don't want to shame him). He told me about all the things he has been doing here on the island for the last 30 years. He …