Church Has Never Changed My Life

When thinking about writing a blog, that statement is not the first thing I thought to write. Believe me, I’ve typed this post about 3 dozen times and that line didn’t surface until around attempt number 15 or so. I’ve thought, meditated, written, rewritten, and prayed about what I should blog about – and after staring at a blank screen for 30 minutes, the one “theme” I kept coming back to was SERVING.
So there it is: Church never changed my life but serving it has. Serving hasn’t always been easy or fun, but it has ALWAYS been rewarding. I can remember several times throughout the years asking myself, “Why are you doing this? You have no idea what you’re doing!” only to look back later and marvel at the amazing things God did through the ministry that I was a part of. Thankfully, by sacrificing my comfort, taking risks, trusting God and simply saying yes to opportunities, I have found a purpose, and my calling.
Years ago, my life was changed by simply agreeing to “work the computer” one Sunday night when there was no one either willing or able to. I was in no way qualified to be in the sound booth, but no one seemed to care! I was a warm body that could click a mouse, and that seemed to be all the qualifications I needed for “the powers that be” to stick me back there. I prepared myself for a night of misery and torment, but it was anything but! That night, something changed! I was different when I stood up from that computer screen. I walked away excited and encouraged, ready to do anything (well almost anything) that was asked of me. That night was the beginning of a whirlwind of change that set me on a path to fulfillment and joy.
All joking aside, choosing to serve, even in the face of fear and discomfort, has changed my life. I’ve matured in my walk with God, become a great father and husband, and discovered a way to glorify the name of Christ by serving. I encourage – even challenge you:  Don’t look only for opportunities to serve, but when they come, “do it with all your might.” You – like me – will look back at that moment as the turning point in your life.
-Michael Martinez
Head of Production


Now it is YOUR Turn

The Eiffel Tower was designed in someones home on their kitchen table. It had never been done before and there was no guarantee that it would be built or that it would work. Hundreds of experts criticized the design. Some of the critics changed their mind after the tower was built. While others remained against it. The people of France however loved it.

It is the most visited monument in the world. Millions of people visit the Eiffel Tower every year. It is a famous landmark that everyone recognizes.

The design is simple, yet memorable, and it happened because someone was willing to dream about something that had never been done.

What is the dream you have in your heart?

Have people told you it would never work?

Now it is your turn to build your Eiffel Tower.


Taking Time to Enjoy Life

Most days are busy. Recently, there was one that made me stop to think. It isn’t as though it was a different day. Just a typical busy day: Kids to school, busy day at the office (yes, pastors do work on days other than Sunday), errands to run, after school practices for the kids, rush home to do homework, and then realize everyone is starving – but I hadn’t been to the store and it was 6:45, so we decided to eat out. We all loaded up in the car to head to a restaurant. This was the first time I had stopped all day long. Bryan was driving so I was just enjoying sitting while Disney radio blared in the car and the kids sang along. I looked out at the horizon, and realized how beautiful the sunset was. I turned the music down to tell everyone in the car, “Isn’t the sunset beautiful tonight?” The kids agreed with my statement, and we continued the drive.

I sat there and pondered my statement. I had to ask myself, “When was the last sunset I took time to enjoy?” In thinking about it, I couldn’t recall the last time I sat down to enjoy a sunset. I could remember lots of Instagram posts of people’s pictures of sunsets recently, but none that I had personally experienced in a long time.

It wasn’t that that particular sunset was any more beautiful. It was just that I finally took time to enjoy it.

 Psalms 90:12 “Teach us to number our days that we might gain a heart of wisdom.”

 Life has a way of sweeping us up and making us go at a pace that, honestly, we were never made to enjoy. In the meantime, sunsets are happening every night, your kids are getting bigger everyday, and life is passing you by. If you haven’t seen the beauty in your life in a while, may I ask: when is the last time you took the time to really look?

 Lately, I have been making more time to enjoy sunsets. I don’t do it every night, but I do it more than I did. I hope you do too.


Hide & Seek

“Hide and go seek” is one of the most basic of children’s games. I don’t remember ever teaching my children the rules of the game; they just seem to know. It is almost as though every child is born with an innate desire to find people that are hidden in obscure locations. It is funny to watch the joy that comes over the child who is “IT” as they are looking and find their friends all around the house.

I love the passage in John 20:15. After Jesus’ death and burial, He finds Mary crying in the garden. She had just discovered that His body was missing from the tomb. He then asked Mary, “For whom are you looking, Mary?”
I love this because Jesus didn’t ask her WHAT she was looking for that led to her sadness. He asked her WHO she was looking for that led to her sadness.

Might I suggest that the sadness we experience isn’t because we don’t have the WHAT that we are desiring — the job, house, car, boyfriend etc. Rather the sadness we are experiencing in our lives often comes from the WHO that is missing in our life.