Sunday, December 26, 2010
But it is a good thing. I used to visit other churches frequently. So having a free Sunday gave me the opportunity to explore the feelings of making the decision to attend a church and what it feels like to be a first time attender. It's always good to get a fresh look at what others are doing.
First off, I checked online...some had good information. Some did not and were hard to navigate.
I was looking at about 4 or 5 churches. I think the deciding factor for me today was ease and the fact that they had visitor parking and said so up front. Also there was a possibility I might know a person or two there.
A couple had shuttle services to satellite parking. Didn't want to face that. Ugh! I am actually a very shy person in new situations.
I knew some of what to expect from the website. Directions were easy to follow, though I did google it to be sure.
It was nice to have a sign directing me to the visitor parking as i entered the parking lot and they had ample visitor parking near the front door. Cool!
Welcome Center right in side the door. Not comfortable going there.
Lots of greeters, opening the door, saying "hi!" and handing out bulletins.
Like the fact that they had the announcements rolling on the screen during the countdown. I learned a lot about what was going on. Easier to see and watch than trying to decipher the bulletin. Too much information.
Worship right up front. About 20 minutes. Most songs I didn't know.
Then the greet and meet. Stayed seated. Didn't know anyone. Not approached.
NOTE to self: Make sure to look for people sitting down and go out to greet them.
Service was smooth, though I didn't know where it was going, since I didn't see the order of service in the bulletin. Is that important?
The message was good from a guest speaker.
Communion at the end, really nice. Picked up a neat little idea from that.
After the service; I actually ran across someone I knew from my church. We didn't have services today at XC (that is a whole other story). It was nice to see someone I knew.
Now, from my creative point of view. I wish I had brought a camera. The stage design was great.
A snapped a couple pics with my cell phone:
I would love to be able to sit down and talk to the person who does the stage designs for them. I think that could be possible, since our church does have connections with the church I visited.
All in all, a nice experience.
If I was searching for new church I probably would give it another try.
Saturday, December 25, 2010
O.k. so we had a few poinsettias.
December 20th, we performed a Willow Creek drama. Lots of busy-ness on the stage.
So, no real stage design.
In the meantime trying to plan the stage design for January literally on a wing and a prayer (o.k. lots of prayer).
Then for Christmas Eve, it was requested that we decorate the interior of the auditorium to somewhat reflect a traditional Christmas decor. In addition to another drama sketch entitled "Stolen Jesus".
Along with praying about January; we are still taking time to reevaluate the contribution and value of the stage designs, particularly when it meets the crush of a Sunday only set-up and tear down.
The stage designing is not going away.
Can we continue to implement creativity in so little time?
Are we in the way of the other teams?
Does it really impact people's journey?
Does it entice the skeptic, challenge the lukewarm & ignite passion in the believer (to go into the world)?
This ENHANCE team prays and designs so the stage reflects the message being given, just like the other teams. If it was simply decoration, I wouldn't be doing it. We design experiential elements that hopefully land the truth of what is being shared. We work to engage ALL the senses in the worship experience.
After the holidays, the leadership often will offer to let us take a break from creative elements. That means dramas, videos, dances, etc.
For example, just in the last several weeks; we have done a dance/movement element, 2 drama sketches, 2 videos pieces, 4 take-away or experiential experiences-challenges.
Well, that break doesn't really include the stage. *smiles*.
This is the synopsis that we have to work from for the next couple months:
Unpack the seven or eight identifiable attributes of spiritual maturity that we seek to gain; use the stories from (1 & 2nd Samuel, 1 & 2nd Kings, 1 & 2nd Chronicles) etc. to identify example of those who got maturity right, or those who didn’t as positive / negative reinforcement.
That's it. Now go...what do you think the stage design should be?
Monday, December 20, 2010
Christmas Nativities to celebrate the birth of Christians long awaited Messiah…
Today my profile pic isn’t a nativity…but more importantly a reminder of the expectancy….
Saturday, December 18, 2010
Was it because I was shocked today when the man at the bank actually said "Merry Christmas" to me; I was so surprised. I turned around and said "Why, thank you. Merry Christmas to you."
Was it yet another story on fb about the offensiveness of the Nativity, or no wait, was that a Christmas tree?
Or was it the song about the 12 days of "winter"?
That's it. While I respect the beliefs of others; I have the right to believe what I belive. I'm not telling anyone that they have believe what I do.
I believe in Christ. I believe in celebrating Christmas. You are free to celebrate or not celebrate, whatever you wish.
"But, as for me & my house" we celebrate the birth of Jesus.
Therefore, I am going to post a different pic of the Nativity as my profile picture from ...now-through Christmas. And you know what, no one can stop me!
I already have posted my first one as my profile pic.
Here are some others that I am considering...
Friday, December 17, 2010
once every day for six days with the seven priests carrying ram's horns in front of the ark.
On the seventh day you big strong men march around the city seven times and then the priests blow their ram's horns.
That's what they did-and gave a war cry. The walls of the city collapsed, and the Israelites were able to charge straight into the city.
The stage was very simple.
Bought and painted some trash cans and buckets. Sorry, I am so not a graffiti artist.
So this is what we ended the service with...
SHOUT element at about minute 44
Let it buffer, then watch...
Sunday, December 12, 2010
There are still some who prefer a BLANK stage for a variety of reasons. While I won’t delve into those reasons, suffice it to say the naysayers have it this month.
Trying not to let the negative comments overcome us. Simply taking time to reevaluate the contribution and value of the stage designs, particularly when it meets the crush of a Sunday only set-up and tear down.
When we were discussing the implications of going to a Sunday only set up, we tried to explain that the added in stage elements (drama, dance and stage design) would have the toughest time with implementation.
So the stage design team is praying and talking. Thoughts?
Friday, December 3, 2010
Again dear friends, if you are reading from facebook, link over the designing for Philistines… to see the pictures.
In between the OT lessons, we are doing NT stories.
First was the “Parable of the Sower” (Matthew)
This week is “Fishers of People” (Mark 1:16-20)
Started with our theme song “The More You Know the Bible”.
Then did the “Books of the Bible Rap” (hit the link & scroll down, then you are able hear part of it) to go along with the four books of the Gospel that I've made.
In case you are wondering, I make these books from various types of boxes (cereal, dog bones, etc.). Glue white construction paper around three edges for the pages, and glue some colored paper around it for the book cover. Then I use sticker letters to write the name of the book.
Then we made simple fish out of colored paper triangles.
Read the scripture (and story). We talked about how fishermen catch lots of fish with nets. Then we pulled out our personal nets (made from white chiffon fabric with knots tied around the edges) and practiced catching our fish in the nets.
And of course the ever popular coloring sheets.
Somehow we have gotten on a kick of having snacks from different parts of the world.
So, the snack this week is one I learned to eat while living in Panama. They are ‘Maria” cookies. Yum, yum! Though they are popular in a lot of Latin American countries.
Hopefully you are enjoying these posts. I seems to be where I need to be at this time…
Back then there was Jonny Baker who blogs mostly about ancient modern experiential practices and Ragamuffin Soul (Carlos Whitttaker) mega-blogger from Buckhead Church which is one of the three North Point Community Church campuses. Los had a weekly blog carnival for stage design. It was very cool. Then he stopped.
I met several bloggers through Carlos’ blog.
Then more recently Church Stage Designs Ideas. There was another one that encompassed several types of creative arts from Willow Creek, which I can’t seem to find right now.
The trouble is, it seems most of what I find out there is about stage designing for large congregations with budgets. These are great resources for inspiration.
This week’s inspiration comes from Simple Worship Stage by Fork in the Road Music blogger
Russell Martin. I saw this design a couple weeks ago-and it jumped out at me. Very nicely done, simple and inexpensive. We were in the planning stages of creating the stage design for “Fishers of Men”
The implementation didn’t quite translate as well as we intended.
I wasn’t there for implementation - one person implementation, short time frame. I did have to laugh because though I was at home that morning, we were in communication via txt. Sending pics and suggestions back & forth. It turned out nicer than our pictures show.
At least, when the other elements we added in (video- http://www.sermonspice.com/search?q=fishers+of+men) it pulled it together nicely.
This was also the first week for the collection of items needed for the local elementary school. The items poured in; I will have more pictures later.
We have 4 Sundays a year, that are designated "Family Sundays". Everyone except the babies and toddlers are in the main service. This was the first week of our reformatted Family Sunday.
Before we simply had the children join us, had a shorter service, had kiddie bags and maybe an element design for all ages. This time we focused the entire service on a child's level, including the message from one of the teachers in the children's ministry. It worked out really well, but will need some tweeking.
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
“I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something:
Yet, just because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do the something I can!” – Helen Keller
My dear cousin @ Thomas Lindsey Hooppaw commented on my last post where we were collecting clothing for local elementary children in need, he said “Just so sad that there are that many needs tho.”
It’s true, it is so sad…
But the exciting thing is you can help at least 1…
For example: This is a video we did at XC a few weeks ago to raise awareness of adoption.
We have several families at XC who have adopted children from all over. The family @ 3:33 adopted little Faith from Ethiopia a few months ago.
That is 1.
Another family just recently adopted two brothers from Africa.
That is now 1 + 1 + 1
See how that works?
This week we are helping 86 children at a local elementary school in need of basic clothing…
That is 1 + 1 + 1 + 1 + 1 + 1 + 1 + 1 + 1 + 1 + 1 + 1 +…
You get the idea!
The needs of this world seem so overwhelming,
We cannot do everything…
But we can do something…
Of all the statistics, the most important number is 1
It only takes 1 person to the life of someone forever.
But, the most important number is 1
What is God calling you to do?
Is He calling you to help?
You cannot do everything.
But you can do something….
What will YOU do??
Monday, November 22, 2010
No bells & whistles. No flashing lights. For me, this is the most exciting pictures of the stage design this week. But these blank boards show you the heart of the people that make up XC Ministries.
We like to offer Missional challenges at XC.
While were we planning the details for our Missional Sunday - We were looking at various organizations that need help & then to challenge the members to serve. Then we received a last minute request from a local elementary school. They have 86+ children that don’t have coats, shoes, clothes, socks or underwear…can you imagine?
This is a big challenge for us. We usually run about 180 in attendance and there were about 300 cards for the various items need. One cool note: some of the members of our creative team are already purchasing items needed.
In addition, our older FLIPT kids (children’s ministry) is taking on the challenge of providing all the socks needed!
So the set design this week is various pieces of clothing for the children and four boards, with all of the requests cards attached (269 cards left). We started out by hanging some of the articles of clothing; nixed that - looked like invisible children hanging in the air. Oh, well.
Then we simply displayed the items on tables in front of the stage-with the request boards standing next to the tables.
11/21/10 – Deuteronomy (Part 2): "Missional Emphasis / Injustice"
Worship Set 1
Instrumental Opener (Call to Worship) Our Love is Loud
W/G & Announcements – FLIPT Out
Worship Set 2 (challenge element package)
I Heart Revolution clips interwoven throughout second worship set
Tear Down the Walls
Message – Great message on Deuteronomy, talking about God’s heart and telling us to take care of the poor, the widowed and the orphaned.
Challenge Bridge: for Hutchinson Elementary – explaining the need at the school.We are giving the congregation two weeks to purchase items.
Challenge Bridge: w/ Beans & Rice Challenge
This is the standard challenge to see what most of the world eats for dinner. We have individual packages of beans and rice for people to take home and have for dinner that night.(Congregation to pick up cards off of the boards, at front of auditorium & collect their beans & rice at the back doors).
Worship Set 3
Mighty to Save
At the end-ALL the cards were taken. People took the cards off of the display (things that had already been purchased) Several came and offered money (which we will use for additional needs for Hutchison). And we handed out about an additional 50 cards for more underwear.
I tell you what-I love the people of this church!
86 pairs of shoes
17 sweat suits for girls
18 sweat suits for boys
55 pkgs of underwear for girls
55 pkgs of underwear for boys
This is one of the reason I love CrossCurrent!
Our last challenge was a backpack collection: The middle school where me meet, ask for help in collecting backpacks that were needed for children attending the school.
The challenge was issued at the end of the service. The drop off was 4:00 p.m. the same day. Here are the results and we met the goal!
Thursday, November 18, 2010
Which is really pretty funny because it doesn't bother me or the other children. We work together to get him interested in what we are doing.
So today we started we MUSIC! It worked in a matter of about a minute, he was dancing around with us.
I’ve been working on a cd of various songs for each week for our study. I finally handed it out to each child today. We first sang the Books of the Bible (rap) to go along with the first five books of the Bible I've made.
(see pictures on blog)
Then on to the lesson. This week we were in Deuteronomy. We were going to learn more about those Israelites that we have been studying about.
First we learned about "how" they read the Bible. With the prayer shawl, covering their eyes with their right hand. We put on our fake prayer shawls, covered ours eyes and read the Shema.
So we chatted about:
Shema is the scripture (Deut. 6:4-9), that starts with...
Hear, O Israel, the LORD is our G-d, the LORD is one...
תרגם: שמע ישיר ישראל, ה 'אלוהינו; ה' אחד
The Shema is the prayer.
The mezuzah is the piece of parchment with the Shema inscribed on it.
We rolled our own mezuzahs, and placed them in little wooden boxes.
Then we went over the a door jam and I showed them "how" and "why" they are placed on the door.
Then we fast forwarded to Mark 12:28-34! You know, where the scribes tried to trick Jesus.
You know the story? Scribe says '“Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”
And J.C., the man said...you guessed it ZAP!
"Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one. Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.
The second is this: Love your neighbor as yourself.
There is no commandment greater than these."
So...basically Jesus said the main thing you need to know is...
"love God, love others, it's simple..."
Then we learned our song for the day. "Love (The Greatest Commandment)" by Jeremy Blaido.
Snack: Cookies from China and nuts. Yummy!
As you can see there were a lot of coloring sheets today! They really like to color; but we didn't color all of them.
Then they asked if we could please play the ENTIRE cd. So we did, we sang, danced and played musical instruments for a half an hour.
Another fun week in the basement.
SONGS on cd that we've been singing and using for our studies
We didn’t meet for the week of Genesis.
1) We the More We Know the Bible (our theme song), sung to “The More We get Together”.
2) Sow, sow, sow the Word (Matthew - Parable of the Sower), sung to “Row, row, row your Boat”.
3) Let My People Go (Exodus - 10 Plagues)
4) Perfect 10 (Leviticus – went back to the 10 Commandments)
5) Facedown – Matt Redman: (Numbers – Israelites complaining about the manna)
6) Love (The Greatest Commandment) – Jeremy Blaido (Deuteronomy – 6:4-9)
7) Joshua Fit the Battle of Jericho (Joshua – The Big Battle)
8) Books of the Bible Rap – Rob Biagi: (as we play with the Books of the Bible being created).
9) Consuming Fire (because it’s one of my favorite songs)
Wednesday, November 17, 2010
The experiential element designed for this week, had some issues with execution.
Shema is the scripture (Deut. 6:4-9), that starts with...
Hear, O Israel, the LORD is our G-d, the LORD is one...
תרגם: שמע ישיר ישראל, ה 'אלוהינו; ה' אחד
The Shema is the prayer.
The mezuzah is the piece of parchment with the Shema inscribed on it.
This week we were in Deuteronomy.
The message focused on teaching the future generations...
For the experiential element, we made a replica of the mezuzah and during the service, we invited people go to various stations and pick the replica to take home with them.
We also had a brochure for further explanation.
Well, some got it and others did not.
The stage design was a representation of the traditional receptacle that the mezuzah is place in. It is box placed on the door jam of traditional Jewish homes.
- Remember that a lot people don’t listen (during instruction).
- Really thinking the element all the way through. We (the creative team) knew all the ends and outs of what we were doing (or some of us did). It didn’t translate well enough to the whole congregation.
- Must remember to keep everything at the simplest level. Remember the 5 W’s & 1 H (who, what, where, when, why and how)
- Some people only picked up one piece and not the other (an explanation brochure). When explaining I only picked up one piece (the Shema scroll) and not the explanation brochure. I should have picked up BOTH pieces.
- In the last minute editing of the reading portion of the element, I probably forgot to even mention the brochure. This week it may have helped to put the two pieces of paper together in one unit, so that people would have the explanation attached. Simplify the process.
- Make sure the entire creative team sits and listens to the entire element. Remembering that most people won’t read even though the entire element is posted on our communications network.
- Didn’t bridge or tie in effectively enough into the over all message. (read last point again)
Interestingly enough, I bet I will have better luck when I do this same element with the preschoolers this Thursday. LOL
Well, we get a chance to redeem ourselves this week-we have two take-way challenges. And thankfully, I don’t have to bridge the pieces. Let’s see if we learn from our mistakes.
Now I need to go to Michael's and pick up adhesives dots to create one of the take-way challenge (collections of new clothing items for a local elementary school in GREAT need) for this week. BIG project – BIG need! Stay tuned for details.
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
The perfect example is this week. We are studying the book of Numbers. The story this week is all about the Israelites grumbling and complaining SO much about the manna, that God is not happy with them at all. So much so, that He gives them SO much quail that it is threatened that it will come out of their noses! It's in there. Seriously.
This little Bible has been very helpful in reading the various stories each week. Each week we read the story.
Next is "Larry" the puppet. I love "Larry". He has such a great personality. I was going to introduce him this week. But decided that he needed to be introduced to the family, before I introduced him to the little Bible study.
We talked about our favorite food and foods that are not our favorites. We decided that even eating our favorite food only, for just a week wouldn't be a lot of fun. We talked about the quail, and it coming out our noses!
Then, we acted out the manna falling during the night scenario. The children laid down on a blanket and pretended to be sleeping (while playing "Face Down" on cd); while this was going on I sprinkled the rose petals all over them to show them how the manna fell during the night
while they slept. Then we "woke" up and exclaimed "What is this?" (that is what the word manna means). It was very cute, they really got into playing their parts of the Isrealites, picking up the manna with awe and proclaiming it was a miracle. We learned about how they were only were to gather enough for one day (we put it in our pockets) or it would turn into "yucky" stuff. I wasn't going to go into maggots.
Then we talked more about the grumbling and complaining.
Our snack this week was a much healthier version of "Frosted Flakes" from our Sunday element. More like a Kashi flakes.
Last, but not least...
As we go along, I am making the books of the Bible out of cereal (and other types of) boxes. I'm am introducing them slowly as we tell the stories from the book. It's then sort of like a game/puzzle where they will be able to sort and match them in order. Though we haven't hit Deuteronomy yet, I will show them how the first five books of the Bible are considered books of the "LAW". That is what the folder/label thingie is for.
I think the coolest thing for me is at the beginning I would have them just play, while I got things readied. After the first week, they have started asking each week after a couple of minutes, if we could just do the lesson first. So cute. i thnk they truly enjoy learning each week!
For all you fb friends visit the "designing for Philistines" blog for pictures .
Saturday, November 6, 2010
Well, this week...we had frosted flakes & water, frosted flakes & water and some more frosted flakes. That's grrrreat!
My favorite kind of experience to design is one that starts before you walk in the door or just as you enter. This was one of those weeks. With the message focusing on the book of Numbers and how the Israelites grumbled & complained about the fact all they had to eat was "manna", all we had on the breakfast bar was Frosted Flakes and water. It certainly got people's attention.
FUN FACT: manna actually means "what is it?"
Then we had a complaint box in the center of the table-with a fake hole, so you really couldn't put a complaint in the box. LOL!
This element really hit the mark of interaction with the people and was tied in perfectly by our teaching pastor; up to and including a point where he was eating the Frosted Flakes off of the floor. LOL!
We also had a visitor. A puppet named Mr. Curmudgeon. Who helped emphasize complaining. He was funny. My favorite part was when he talked about the fact we have a 'biker gang". Very witty. His video will be posted soon on XC website.
The stage was simple, created to invoke the tower of smoke (and fire) that hung over the tabernacle. If you will notice there are also white petals on the stage (again representing the manna). Really fun to put together. It was fun having Allison back with the team this week.
If you'd like to see all the pictures visit me at the "designing for Philistines" blog.
Now going to get ready for the children's lesson for Thursday....
Thursday, November 4, 2010
I haven't abandoned blogging about stage designs. Sadly, the photos of the last week's stage design done - got eaten up by a boogie monster in Picasa.
We are currently in a mini series entitled Law & Order. If you want to see the stage follow this link to the podcast, you will be able to see it behind the pastor)
So there will be more to come. We have some really interesting ideas coming up, particularly this Sunday. So stay tuned...
Here just because I like to add pictures - here is a random picture of "ducky"
In between posting about stage designs, I am writing about projects that I am doing for the children I am watching during my daughter-in-law's Bible study on Thursdays. Some of what you are hearing in these projects are elements that were rejected by the fuZe creative team (the team that designs the elements for the main weekend experience)
For example-the 10 Plagues game I did with the children, was based on a take-away suggested for the main service. Since I do the experiential elements, I nixed this one for main service.
Too expensive to expand that idea for 200-250 people & I really didn't feel it would have the impact desired. Just would have been cute and then people would have thrown them away.
Unlike the Tenebrae service where we gave out, a nail and a strip of black cloth.
Or a piece of rope we handed out to represent an eternal time of God.
People still carry those around.
I particularly appreciate those of you who follow my designing for Philistines...blog.
I continue to design stage and experiential elements that
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
I thought I drop back to Exodus and do the Ten Commandments this week with the children. You know, Leviticus = Law; Ten Commandments = Law.
Last week we sang the song called "The Perfect Ten". We will be singing it again and talking about each of the commandments. I am not sure if I will be using the dice or not...
Here are my initial thoughts:
First I will hand out their bags with all the little pieces in them. We will pull out each one and have a short discussion on what it means...
Then we are going to lay the pieces out on the floor in a circle; and sing the song.
SONG & ACTIONS
Are you able to envision this: music starts...
#1, we've just begun, God should be first in your life
pick up the #1 piece over our heads and wave it back and forth.
#2 the idol; rule, those graven images-aren't nice
lay down #1, scoot over and pick up the gold pieces, shaking out heads "no"
#3 God's Name should be never spoken in jest
lay down #2, scoot over and pick up the smile face. Put it over our mouth.
#4 the Sabbath's for our worship and for rest
lay down #3, scoot over and pick up the Bible. Do worship action and sleep action.
#5 we all should strive to honor father and mother
lay down #4, scoot over and pick up the mother and father figures, wiggle the figures when it says it in the song.
#6 don't get your kicks from killing one another
lay down #5, scoot over and pick up the hand, hold over head and shake head "no".
#7 life is heaven when you're true to your mate
lay down #6, scoot over and pick up the ring and reach back and touch the mother and father figures.
#8 don't steal and break this rule for goodness sake!
lay down #7, scoot over and pick up the baseball bat.
#9 don't be the kind who goes around telling lies
lay down #8, scoot over and pick up the "A,B,C" put over mouth
#10 don't covet when you see your neighbor's house or wife
lay down #9, scoot over and pick up the house and then lay it down
Then clap our hands for the rest of the verse.
I am a little more ahead this week than I have been before.
I went to Michaels and Wal-mart to get the items for the teaching. Here is what I got.
1. a big #1: School section at Wal-mart. I glued the number (#1) to a piece of foam)
2. gold coins: (From Wal-mart party section; to link back to last week's story about the story of the Israelites making idols)
3. smiley faces: we will draw X's over the mouth (see this post) Smiley stickers from Michaels. And larger smiley's from foam to play the game.
4. a Bible: (a painted little wooden disc from Michaels .29 cents)
5. little wooden mom and dad to color and that stand up (Bargain bin at Michaels, .29 cents with crayons) We will color this.
6. a wooden hand: (Michaels)
7. a shiny engagement ring: (from Michaels wedding section)
8. baseball bat: (stealing the base) LOL. (a painted little wooden disc from Michaels .29 cents)
9. A,B,C wooden figure: (for words-not to lie) (a painted little wooden disc from Michaels .29 cents)
10. a little wooden house: (a painted little wooden disc from Michaels .29 cents)
I am also getting some more "Silly Bands" that are fuzzy and cool. I think this will lend itself to understanding "coveting" something that isn't yours.
The video of the song can be found here: (I downloaded it from itunes).
The Perfect Ten Song
The words are below:
the perfect 10
In a cloud of fire and smoke
a mighty voice of thunder broke
as God descended to the mountaintop.
High upon Mt. Sinai,
He gave the rules we should live by
as God gave out the "shalts" and "thou shalt nots."
Number one, we've just begun, God should be first in your life.
Number two's the idol rule: Those graven images aren't nice.
Number three; God's Name should be never spoken in jest.
Number four, the Sabbath's for our worship and for rest.
Number five; we all should strive to honor father and mother.
Number six, don't get your kicks from killing one another.
Number seven, life is heaven when you're true to your mate.
Number eight, don't steal and break this rule for goodness sake!
Number nine, don't be the kind who goes around telling lies.
Number ten; don't covet when you see your neighbor's house or wife.
That's the list and God insists we stay away from these sins;
That is why we memorize commandments one through ten.
The perfect ten, the perfect ten;
They're just as true as they were way back when.
God gave the perfect ten, the perfect ten;
Let's say them once again. (song repeats and ends with)
1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9 - The perfect ten!
Saturday, October 30, 2010
As a church we are reading through the Bible in a year. These are the first few weeks of the series and the stage designs.
Heart of Hope (Story of Abraham)
Humbled Heart (Story of Joseph)
The Seed and the Sower
Hardened Heart (Story of Pharaoh)
Misguided Heart (Story of the Golden Calf)
The hearts are simply cut from 8’ x 8’ sheet of foam and hung with fishing line and safety pins. The largest heart was cut in two pieces and taped together in the back. We change them around some each week and add additional props for each story.
The 3rd week, I added red hearts to the hearts and additional hearts and leaves strewn across the stage for the Story of the Sower.
For this last week, Misguided Heart, our stage changed to reflect an old series we did (see the stage here) because we reintroduced a character from our "Imperfect Church" video (you can see her @ 4:55) with a cool live sketch. Sadly, it didn’t get video properly. We may go back and try to video tape it again.
This is the original video for “Imperfect Church”. You really should check it out.
Friday, October 29, 2010
While I am still doing stage designs for the weekend service, I recently have been on a little side jaunt. For the last three weeks, I have been doing the childcare for my daughter-in-law’s small group Bible study on Ruth & Naomi (by Beth Moore). The ages range from 2 years old – almost 6.
Currently our church is doing a year through the Bible. I decided to mirror the teaching on Sundays.
Though next week, I seem to be stuck since we are in Leviticus.
The mom’s were saying I should be writing these down or taping the sessions; LOL! Writing it down it is hard to show just how much fun we are having. I was actually tickled this week. I usually let the children play for about 10 minutes, while I unpack and get ready. This week after about 5 minutes, they all asked if we could just do the lesson first. Love these little ones. So here goes…
Most important just make it FUN!
Next, I think that the biggest thing is repetition & interaction.
Each week we read the actual story for the “Beginners Bible”. I want them to understand that all of this comes from God’s word.
Remember children will easily make imaginative jumps. For example adults would probably get stuck on the fact that I used a reindeer lawn ornament, instead of a calf in the Golden Calf story. The children had no problem “getting” that it was a calf.
Each week, we sing
(Sung to “The More We Get Together”; along with hand motions that the children invented)
The more you know the Bible, the Bible, the Bible
The more you know the Bible,
The more you know God
For His Word is our Word, yes
His Word is our Word
The more you know the Bible,
The more you know God
Week 1: The Parable of the Sower
Started with “The More You Know the Bible”
Simply read the story from the “Beginners Bible” and acted it out.
Had seeds that I cut out to act out the story.
Birds: well, I just happened to have to little rubber ducks.
Hard Ground: a wooden chair
Thorns: we pretended and used “straggling hands”
Grow: had a bunch of leaves from fake flowers
Found this song on the internet ‘Sow, Sow, Sow the Word”
Had little packs of nut (we called them seeds) for the snack
Week 2: The 10 Plagues
Thankfully it is close to Halloween, so I was able to find all the unusual items I needed for this.
So we read the story from the “Beginner Bible”
Then we played the “Ten Plagues” game.
Blood: Party Store (little containers of fake blood), and Swedish Fish candy, (because the fish died)
Frogs: $1 Store
Gnats: Walmart, craft Pom Poms
Flies: $1 store
Livestock: Party Store, packs of farm animals
Boils: “Dot” candies
Hail: ice cubes
Locusts: $1 Store, packs of winged insects
Darkness: black cloth blindfolds
Death of Firstborn: Party Store in the baby shower section
The game board was from the Party Store. It was an inexpensive plastic deviled egg holder. I added sticker numbers labeling each section 1-10.
Printed out paper, with multiple pieces that had the words;
“Let my people go!”
Everybody got a pile of each of the pieces and some of each of the plagues.
We simply rotated around.
First person was Moses and would throw down the game piece (In the center) and everybody said
“Let my people go!”
Second person would be Pharaoh and throw down the game piece and every body said “No!”
Then we would figure out which plague and put it in the middle with great flourish.
Then the second person became Moses….and so on
Until the end when Pharaoh said “Go now!” everybody cheered.
The “boils” were the favorite, because we would lick them and stick them on our hands and then eat them and go “eeeewwww”! LOL
And they decided we had to play the game four times so everyone got the chance to be Pharaoh and play the “Go Now!” piece.
Everyone went home with baggies of all the plagues.
Snack: was Goldfish crackers.
Week 3: The Israelites and the Golden Calf
Again, thankfully it is close to the holidays and they already have Christmas decorations for sale in the stores.
First I got a new pair of white socks for each of the children and used an indelible sharpie marker to draw smiley face on the bottom. These were the Israelite puppets in our story. Later became “God socks”
Golden Calf: I wound up using a mechanical reindeer lawn ornament for the calf and 2 packs of gold garland.
Gold: Found gold coins (with paper money) Party supply section at Wal-Mart
The “Beginners Bible” only had the story of Moses going up and getting the “Ten Commandments”. So we read up to the part where the Israelites got tired of waiting and did our project.
Again we simply acted out the story. We put on our “Israelite sock puppets.”
We acted out how the Israelites got so tired or waiting for Moses to come down from the mountain 9when he was talking to God for 40 days!)
Aaron got tired of the people complaining and gathered all the gold and jewelry (there is where we had the gold coins), and then they made the golden calf. We then wrapped the gold garland around the reindeer and pretended the Israelites were worshiping the calf, whom they called Yahweh (yes, go read the story)
Then we picked up the story in the Bible when Moses came down the mountain with the Ten Commandments. We spent a little time talking about the second commandment (no idols)
Talked about how bad it was that they made an idol, especially when we should always be waiting on God.
We ended the story with putting on our God socks and I told them every time you wear your God socks, you remember to always look up and wait for God.
Snack: Since calves are cows and cows give milk: we made home made butter. Using heavy whipping cream in a glass container. Then you shake the container until it turns into butter. Oh, yes that was interesting. We actually pulled out a giant stuffed animal to put in the middle ‘just in case “we accidentally” dropped the glass jar. Since it takes about 10- 15 minutes to separate the whipping cream into butter, we played a cd of the “Perfect Ten” song (words here), 3 times.
Amazingly they kept continuing to shake and sing, and pass it to the next person and shake and sing. We put the fresh butter on some McVitties Digestive Biscuits (World Market) for our snack. We also had a piece of Laughing Cow Cheese. I had a container from the Laughing Cow Cheese for each of them.
Everyone went home with their “God socks” and gold coins. I also found a pack of cowboy Silly Bands (at Wal-Mart) that had a cow silly band in it. I gave everyone one, reminding them not to have idols in their lives. That was a hit.
Saturday, October 2, 2010
One night about midnight, he came to the guard shack I was working and started chatting with me. At one point, he just said “I love you and can’t live without you” and pulled out his gun and shot himself right in front of me.
Everything seemed to move in slow motion after that point. He slumped over the steering wheel of the cobalt blue sedan. I could see the bloody exit wound on his back. His right arm was limply splayed over the center console. Blood was splattered everywhere. When the bullet exited his back it pierced the upholstery of the drivers seat, right at a stitched seam.
This really messed me up as you can imagine. I was actually under investigation for the shooting, because of bizarre circumstances that surrounded the incident. He did live. It took years to heal from this attempted suicide that happened in front of my eyes.
Fast forward to many years later. There was a young girl at youth group, who was going through some very difficult times and wasn’t talking about what was wrong. Finally one night on the phone I cornered her and told her she had to tell what was going on.
She said “I can’t tell, no one could understand. Have you every seen someone try to commit suicide?””
Well, I could truthfully answer, “Yes I have, let’s talk about it”.
No human mind could have ever foreseen that conversation. Only God In His infinite wisdom, knew the truth.
So, who am I? Just another face you see everyday.
"Every adversity, every failure, every heartache carries with it
the seed of an equal or greater benefit."Napoleon Hill
I just finished reading the story of Joseph again (Genesis 37-50) and I was reminded of one of my favorite sayings. "In every adversity; there is a seed of equal of greater benefit."
That reminded me of this story from my past.
One of the things I learned early on in life was to simply trust God in adversities.
We are not promised a perfect life. But He does work things out for our good.
Why not read the story of Joseph this weekend. How has God been there for you after times of adversity? Let's talk about it.
Now I am going to go figure out how I am going to incorporate the story of Joseph into the stage design this weekend.
You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.20
Tuesday, September 28, 2010
Simply question, that now has a great solution.
While this falls outside of my normal posts on stage designs, I definitely believe this falls under my life mission statement of "love God, love others, it's simple"...
Pennies in Protest explains their success story and how it can be duplicated by anyone anywhere. Fourteen easy steps show how to start a charity for kindness against hate.
You are even able to link to wbc's picket schedule.
This is how I found out they will be picketing at the Murat Theatre at Old National Centre in Indianapolis, IN (October 3, 2010 7:15 PM - 8:00 PM) and at a local funeral for a local fallen soldier; both at his memorial service and his burial at Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, VA (October 4, 2010 12:15 PM - 1:00 PM).
It may be a little late to do something this time (since this is this coming weekend), I will be watching and waiting and planning.
Anyone else care to join with me?
Thursday, September 23, 2010
With not an ounce of technical ability; I am a dreamer, a visionary, the “vicar of vibe”. I see things, a simple image or video clip and I instantly start extrapolating it into how it could be utilized in the worship experience. Trust me, I find it just as odd and unusual as I am sure other people do. I seriously don’t believe it is me. I strongly believe that God has this ability see things in new ways.
So, simply put, I see these visions for the future, I pray for specifics (people with the needed talents and skills) and “Pow” He provides. Honestly I don’t really get it; I just keep stepping out in faith. I don’t know where this journey will lead.
Last Thursday I had a meeting with Nick (the large scale projections guy) and David, most awesome media guy. It was a “getting to know you” session. Nick works with a local company that specializes in providing full-service audiovisual rental, staging and production services, with a specialty in HD widescreen projection and keynote development. Read: Large Scale Projections. Woo Hoo!
In the course of our conversation, I mentioned the fact that I have dreamed for utilizing holograms in a worship environment for several years now.
His company probably something along this scale of holographic imaging (click to watch the first video showreel image).
If you continue down, you can watch the Radiometer Free Format™ Case. This is more along the line of what I have been thinking about.
Large scale, free format, holographic imaging. Probably in the open air space above the auditorium seating. There are several links in this post cheoptics on the brain.
This is the video that prompted the idea of using holograms in worship in my brain about 4 years ago
Next step…I believe it is to continue to pray for someone with grant writing experience.
So hear I go…
We are trying to eliminate placing the projector where we have always had (to free up more seating).
There are still issues, but we are working out various arrangement of the tech equipment.
This is the second layout we tried. There are still serious issues that need to be dealt with in regards to egress from the auditorium. This week we will have Nick (the large scale projection dude) take a look at it and see if he can come up with a different solution.
If you have any thoughts, please feel free to let me know.
Friday, September 10, 2010
So now we are trying to decide how to configure the space where are set up our tech/production area in the limited space in the auditorium where we meet.
Need to keep the doors accessible for egress.
We have light tech, sound tech, media tech and producer set up in this space.
Would like to moved the projector back
So simply thinking about the options…
Dealing With Tragedy (Sunday, August 29, 2010)
In loving memory of Patrick Dzor (May 23, 1991- August 25, 2010)
Monday, September 6, 2010
This use of technology is not insanely new. Gorillaz have used it in their live performances. Diesel utilized this concept in their fashion show in 2007.
For the Diesel fashion show they utilized a combination of cutting edge digital art and performance CGI visual effects and 3D animations.
"The visuals are projected through a series of 'foils' into mid air, so you see the images in mid-air. The models can then interact with them and walk through them. We used plastic foils placed at 45 degree angles so that the projected light from the ceiling goes onto a foil, is reflected on to another and then into the air. (Creative Review, June 2007)
When I see effects like this my first thought is how to develop it for use in the worship experience. I know that I can’t be the only one who thinks along this process.
In fact it is time to pray. I have prayed for all of the following (plus a lot more) and God has faithfully provided; someone to sew, someone with carpenter skills, some one with projected video skills.
Now I am praying for someone that has experience in cheoptics and a desire to utilize their talent to serve God in the worship experience.
Wednesday, August 25, 2010
This summer the messages have been on the 10 Commandments.
This week was "Thou shalt not use the Lord's name in vain". Wow! Fun topic to create a stage design around (please note tongue in cheek).
So, Allison and I were actually at the Dollar Store looking for hula hoops (long story).
I just happen to look up at a display of a bouquet of balloons with smiley faces on them. Pointed them out to Allison, who nodded and crossed her fingers over her mouth.
It was simple, fun and to the point.
Plus the children really got a kick out of them, particularly when we handed them out at the end.
Monday, July 26, 2010
This week's focus at XC was on "serve the world... "
Worship Set 1
Worship Set 2 -
Tear Down the Walls (Hillsong United)
Revelation Song (Jesus Culture) This is an amazing song. if you haven't heard it yet, I highly encourage you to listen.
Song in Chinese: we learned and sang a popular Chinese worship song in Chinese.
Jesus I Love You
Message: Our missionary in China shared her journey to serving God in China.
Reflective Worship Song
Where You Go I Go (Jesus Culture)
The stage focus in on traditional Chinese colors red & black. We also used live cut bamboo at the entrance to the school, for the stage and on a shoji in the communion area
This is part of Sunday Set List at the Worship Community.
Thursday, May 27, 2010
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
The last three weeks, we have engaged in ancient/modern worship practices. It was actually pretty interesting.
Synopsis: Serious Christians talk often about following Jesus the way that the Early Church did. We seem to think that the earliest followers of Jesus were more pure, more centered, more authentic in their understanding of Jesus, and living out His plan for life. But most Christians and skeptics have only a slight understanding of what actually took place in the Early Church. There is a mountain of historical evidence—even beyond the few references in the Bible to early Christian life—that can tell us what actually happened, how early followers of Jesus lived, and how they understood what life in Jesus was all about. What could we learn about our modern life with Jesus if we looked into these ancient ways? What might we expose about the shallow and easy life of today if we looked through the eyes of these bold Christians? Join us for an intense and provocative comparison of our ways and their ways as we discover the real truth about following Jesus!
For the stage design we tried to recreate the feel of ancient catacombs, like where the early church would have met in secret.
We sang the "Phos Hilaron" (Hail Gladdening Light) which is the earliest known Christian hymn recorded outside of the Bible that is still being used today.
Creative readings from some of the earliest surviving texts like the "The Way of Life" section from the Didache.
The second week we celebrated Communion per Hippolytus (circa 200 AD) – which is a 3-cup communion (wine, milk/honey, water) These cups represent Christ's death and resurrection, the promised land and baptism.
It was actually pretty funny. We had set up three different stations in the auditorium and instructed people to walk around the auditorium and pick up each element, partake and move on. Within a few minutes there was a traffic jam! LOL. People had just stopped were they were. But, it was kind of cool. They were chatting quietly amongst each other or worshiping. We did manage to get the flow going again. All in all, the element itself took a lot longer than planned, but no one seemed to be upset. From the comments afterwards people young and old really enjoyed the experience.
Wednesday, May 19, 2010
Saturday, April 24, 2010
Tuesday, April 20, 2010
Thursday, April 1, 2010
Last week at XC Ministries.
This is a really big deal. For me it is the best stage design yet. But, this is NOT something that I designed or implemented. But this was created by a super sweet person named Allison Sovey.
But what I love more than that is engaging skeptics in relationship. It just comes naturally. It often happens at Starbucks. I call it Starbucks evangelism. I meet people, become friends with them wherever they are at in life. I really seem to be able to “hear” when people have an interest in life that could be a “hook” into me inviting them to try out XC Ministries. And God does the rest…
Now, about Allison. I met Allison when I started working at Starbucks 4 years ago. She was an de-churched person who had completely stepped away from God in her faith journey.
She joined the ENHANCE stage design team almost a year ago. She has since accepted Jesus as her personal Lord and Savoir and hasn’t looked back since. It’s been a fantastic journey.
But you know what? It has been just so much fun to see her utilizing her passion and gifting, while growing in her new relationship with God.
As of a couple of weeks ago, the mantle of ENHANCE team leadership has been passed on to Allison. It is just so darned exciting. I can barely contain myself.
I have been changing up what I do at XC ministries. More about that later. But, I will still work along side Allison on the ENHANCE team, because I just flat out love it.
I am Dorothy (vicar of vibe) no longer the ENHANCE team leader @ XC.
My mission statement is “love God, loves others, it’s simple…”.
My vision is to “entice the skeptic, challenge the lukewarm & ignite passion in the believer (to go into the world)”
I see a generation
Rising up to take their place
with selfless faith, selfless faith…
- Hosanna by Hillsong United
Friday, March 12, 2010
When I was a child, I lived in
I loved to catch horned toads lizards. They were so cute. Spitting and spewing when they are captured, then quickly falling asleep when you rolled them over in your hand and gently rubbed their soft underbelly.
We would build amazing and intricate tumbleweed forts, inside irrigation ditches. Preparing for battle with unknown foes and ever watchful of crashing infernos of water that could any moment rush down the ditch and engulf us.
A wonderfully fun trip was going to
My very first job was picking cotton along side day laborers in the fields next to my home.
You see, I am old enough to have lived in the 1960’s cultural paradigm of our country. According to that paradigm, everybody was a Christian, except for a few classmates that were Jewish. Well, and then the Hopi Indians on the reservation, but that was an entirely different world.
In my world, I ate tortillas before I even had a clue what a Coca Cola was. But, I was blessed to have parents who lived their beliefs. These beliefs were very radical in that tumultuous time in our nation’s history.
My parents practiced civil disobedience by marching for civil rights, because of Martin Luther King Jr., dream. I have seen my father cry twice in my life. Once was when he heard Martin Luther King, Jr. had been murdered. The other was when JFK was assassinated.
Our family was strong supporters of Caesar Chavez and the United Farmer Workers. We boycotted everything. I vividly remember going to the grocery store and proudly asking to see the UFW label on the boxes of grapes.
My mom actually is a charter member of a NAACP chapter she helped found in
Dad was an EEO officer for the government.
They have always been active politically and card carrying members of the ACLU.
My value of all God’s children isn’t because it is PC, it is part of my DNA, It wasn’t something I had to learn, it was something that coursed through my heart.
Thank you mom and dad for blessing me with my DNA.
This is one of the puzzle pieces that weaves together to create who I am.
(reposting from an old blog of mine 04/04/08)