Thursday, April 30, 2009


It's amazing how small - how connected - our world has become. Sometimes -- as we're seeing with the Swine Flu -- it's not in ways that are so great.

But for me watching all of this has just driven home this point of how connected we are . . . Just think how in a few short days the Flu traveled from Mexcio to the US and to New Zealand, and Israel, and Spain, and Scotland, and Peru, and Guatemala. (And that was as of yesterday!) Wow! It's so true today as someone has said: 'When China sneezes we catch a cold.' (and when Mexico coughs we get the swine flu! :)

My point is that the world's 'shrunkeness' is a reality as followers of Jesus that we cannot (and should not) hide from. As a matter of fact it's opportunity! [As I was thinking about this I thought about the Coca Cola add from my kid days that I posted below for fun . . . prophetic]

With the internet, with global travel so easy, etc - it opens up so many doors to impact our world . . . What happens when the Kingdom of God becomes viral???

Enough rambling . . . What are your thoughts???

Vision 09' Update - Part IV

On Mission . . . Church Planting

It's awesome how God created every living thing on the planet to multiply! To produce more living things. Cindy and I have done well in that area together :)

The same is true spiritually. God uses our life to help birth new spiritual life in others!

And the same is true as a church. We're on mission to start new life. To help start Kingdom oriented churches. And this doesn't mean churches just like us. We're searching for where we can be a part of churches birthed in places and ways where they can be viral for the Kingdom of God!

Right now I'm mentoring one man who is planting a church in a school (just like we started!) with a vision to plant a church in schools all over town.

I've been meeting with another local guy who wants to start a church in Fort Collins, Colorado. And this week I'm meeting for the first time with a guy who wants to plant a 'Cowboy Church' in Sinton.

I've invested time in two church planting conferences this Spring and have been meeting with some local pastors talking about how we can plant Kingdom seeds together in needy areas of Corpus.

Now, I notice that I've said a lot of 'I's - but it's not about me. I'm only laying groundwork for the Holy Spirit to work through ALL of us so that lives will be transformed.
The vision as we continue to move forward in church planting is that each of us individually - and collectively - would offer our time and talents and resources so that new churches can bring God's Kingdom to every corner of our City and beyond.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Vision 09' Update - Part III

On Mission . . . Life Groups . . .

This is where On Mission vision is starting to pick up steam!

Our groups are the core of doing life together at Oso Creek. The primary place where we're challenged and cheered-on in this spiritual journey.

To this point our groups have primarily been formed around 'affinity.' You like me, I like you. Or, you're like me and I'm like you. Good stuff.

But we started asking, what if instead our groups were formed around mission? What if our groups we're not just serving occassionally, but were identified by how they were on mission?

Instead of the Lawley group, or the Kratz group, the Hufstetler group -- it was the 'Mission 911 Group' , the 'Crisis Pregnancy Center Group', or the 'King High School Group' or ______ ______ (you fill in the blank)?

And so we said, 'Why not? Let's go for it!'

Over the past couple of months we have challenged EVERY group to identify the needs around them, and where God wants them to be on mission. Now as the groups identify that place/people/need, the next step is to ramp up the on mission focus.
Some of our groups are already there, but I've told the leaders that in the past we've spent maybe 10% of our group time and energy on being on mission . . . And what if that was more like 40%? How powerfully the Kingdom will come as we have that common, sustained purpose for the King!

Now, I realize that this may mean that some groups have a hard time identifying one mission. That's OK, maybe now you have two groups!
Or, maybe some folks move to another group because their passion resonates with another group's passion. That's awesome!

The point is, how can we be living out God's purposes in every facet of our lives and our church? How can we truly live out being the 'sent ones'?

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Live Like You're Dying

I love that song . . . I go back to it when I'm feeling stale. It helps wake me up.

I've been in Philippians with my DG guys . . . Paul says this near the beginning of that letter:

"I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death. For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain." (Philip. 1:20-21)

So here's a question that flowed from those verses and has been on my mind . . . A question I dare you to chew on this week . . .

'Is your purpose for living big enough to prepare you for dying?'

Vision 09' Update - Part II

On Mission.

On Mission is expressive of our lives being lived as 'sent' people, and not just 'seated' people in a building.

In Acts 1:8 Jesus said, 'When the Holy Spirit comes you will be filled with My Power. And you will go and live out my story all over the planet. On your street, at your job, in your City and across the world!' [OK, that's my version - if you want you can read the NIV here.]

The point is that we are called to be On Mission EVERYWHERE! That's why I love the word 'Glocal.' It's a combo-expression of Global and Local.

Jesus said: 'Go and make disciples of all nations . . .' (Matt 28)

Being a 'church' is not about a group of paid staff being on the field while the others watch and throw a few bucks into the game. 'Go!' is for all of us!

Just think about the POWER when we ALL discover what it looks like to use our talents and our vocations and our gifts to advance God's Kingdom across the street and across the world!

Being a Kingdom-Agent is a privilege that we all have, everywhere we go.

So, how are we seeking to encourage that and express that as Fellowship of Oso Creek, a unique voice of the Kingdom of God?
Watch for tomorrow's post . . .

Monday, April 27, 2009

Vision 09' Update - Part I

At the end of last year, we expressed the Oso Creek vision for 2009 that the leadership had been praying through for months, as two-winged -- DG's and being On-Mission.

And wow, has God ever been moving! And the Glocal Airlines imagery is becoming more real every day!

What I'm going to do this week is write several different posts to update you on all that is happening, because YOU are the vision!

But first in this post I want to connect again these two ideas - DG's and On Mission.

DG's simply stands for Discipleship Groups. Groups of 2 or 3 folks of the same gender reading God's Word together every week, having real accountability, and praying for those around them. Very simple. But vital because our vision for God's Kingdom begins with and revolves around our relationship with the King. Period.

You see the King brings His rule and reign everywhere He goes. And if our lives are going to be truly On Mission we must be continually plugged-in to His presence and power. And if we are, then where we go, the King goes. . .

. . . And where Christ rules, people and places are transformed!

I invite you to pray this with me every day . . . 'Lord, Your Kingdom come, Your will be done - in our lives, in our church, in our City, and in our world - just as it is in heaven!'

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Hooks . . .

Great time at the Hooks game tonight with my Dad and my Son! It was a beautiful night and good game . . .

But three generations of Bradshaws . . . now that's scary!

More Easter Fest Mission . . .

Man, I have been so lame in blogging the last week or two, but I have been neck deep in on mission and it's been exciting! I'm about to unleash a series of blogs that captures where God has us and where we are going on mission

-- so be watching next week!

Here's two more serving victories in our community from the Easter Festival:

- You collected 1,109 pounds of food for the food bank! That's an increase from the 720 pounds we collected last year!

- You gave 19 units of blood to the Blood Bank and that's an increase from 11 units last year!

That's life! Way to go Creekers!

Pray for Encounters . . .

Many ladies from Oso Creek are at Women's Encounter this weekend . . . Pray with me that they will find freedom in Christ!

'Consider yourselves to be dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus!' (Rom 6:11)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


Don't forget Dave Ramsey's Town Hall for Hope --- Thursday Night at 7pm at the building!

Forward this to friends who don't want to participate in the recession - and who want to have financial hope!

It's gonna be awesome . . . I've posted the video below again . . .

Monday, April 20, 2009

Weekend to Remember . . . This Week!

Weekend to Remember - an incredible marriage conference is in Corpus THIS weekend! It is not just for hurting marriages but for all marrieds and soon-to-be's who want a great marriage!

Creeker's Joe & Connie Sengler are the area Family Life representatives for Weekend to Remember and they told me yesterday that the cost for a couple has been reduced to $129 for this weekend! And if that is a stretch talk to Joe and we can help you. We want your marriages and families to be stronger!

Call Joe for more info . . . 361.946.6074

Weekend . . .

It was a great weekend . . .

On Saturday the Students made over $1,100 on their rummage sale! Awesome! Thanks to those of ya'll of donated rummage . . . it means students at camp to hear about the King!

Then yesterday was a powerful day of Celebration! Thanks for leading us into it Steve and the praise team . . . God is moving at Oso Creek!

And we wrapped us last night with an awesome Discovery Class . . . New Creekers who are excited about being On Mission with us!

This week . . . don't forget about Town Hall For Hope Thursday night at 7pm at the building!

And our Students still need resources and another vehicle to go to camp . . . if you can help call Beau (361.446.0322)

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Experiencing the Spirit

As a new believer I cut my biblical/theological teeth on Henry Blackaby's Experiencing God. Literally. I mean I went through it 4 times in less than two years and God used it in awesome ways in my life!

So when I was asked to do a blog review on his new book Experiencing the Spirit - it was a no brainer. (It was such a no brainer that I irrationally agreed to do it during Easter week! And now I'm late!)

With a vintage Blackaby heart, he encourages us to seek what God wants to supernaturally do through us - instead of seeking in our own power what we can do for God.

Blackaby talks in practical ways about how harnessing the Spirit's gifts and power in our life is about relationship. And when we enter into that relationship in a way that the Holy Spirit has full access to our lives, THEN we understand what it means to live life to the fullest!

The book is just an awesome reminder that the real and living power of God lives IN us!

While we are in this 40 day season between the Resurrection of Jesus and the exploding of the Holy Spirit into believers lives at Pentecost -- it would be an awesome time to read this book and allow God to teach us and remind us of all He has for us in the Spirit.

Now here's some good news --- I've got a free copy for the first person who replies to the blog AND will do a review of their own (you can either post it to your blog or send it to me!)

For everyone else, you can click here to order it at Amazon (or above from the publisher).

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

April 15th

What a beautiful morning, had a great run. I'm finally getting back in my running rhythm again after being sporadic the last 4-6 weeks. It feels so good to be back in that rhythm.

And the best thing about today . . . I finished my stinkin' taxes about 3 or 4 weeks ago! Yeah! I pray for you poor suckers who will be in the line at the downtown post office at about 11pm tonight (I've been there!)

Beginning THIS Sunday . . .

What is there to learn from the condition that our economy is in?

What does God say about how we are to protect, save and give our resources?

How can we live with financial confidence instead of doubt and fear?

Beginning this Sunday we are going to take on some Lessons from an Economic Downturn! Don't miss it!

And who around you is living in financial fear and needs to hear about the confidence we can have in God? Bring them with you and pray for God to change their lives!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The Students Need Your Stuff! This Week!

All these people will be lined up on Saturday morning to give our Student Ministry money so that students can go to camp and learn to more powerfully follow Jesus!

The catch is that the students need your rummage to sell to them!

The sale is THIS weekend, so get out there and clean out your garage (or attic, or closets) and get your stuff to the building asap . . . anything and everything will help!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Great Wisdom . . .

Our culture continually confuses what is personal and what is private . . . And as disciples of Jesus we many times keep private what is personal but should be shouted from the rooftops!

Below is a lengthy, but very wise post by Mark Beeson - one of the bloggers I read. I encourage you to read it, think about it, live it . . .

“It’s personal,” she said. She assumed the STOP sign she erected with her “It’s personal” comment would back me down. She was wrong.

Some things are personal. Some things are private. Some things are very personal but not at all private. It’s good to know the difference.

Want help with that? Consider these examples:

A man asked me to baptize him, “in private, because it’s so personal.” I refused. Baptism is very personal but it is anything but private.

A couple asked me to marry them in, “a secret ceremony because we want it to be intimate and personal.” I refused. I suggested they go on a date, tell each other they love each other on a moonlit walk and get their clandestine conversations out of the way so they can go public with their marriage commitment in the presence of witnesses. “Marriage is not a private matter,” I told them. “Weddings are public statements of deeply personal commitments.”

One woman told me she wanted to keep her faith “to herself.” She said she didn’t want to tell her children she was a Christian. She said her faith was “too personal.” I told her she was a selfish woman. I told her, “If everyone who deeply loves Jesus kept their faith to themselves, the church would be extinct in just one generation.”

Everything “personal” isn’t confidential, but some “personal” matters should be kept private.
Of course, reasonable people should assume a modicum of respect and civil decorum will militate against impropriety. In polite society, dignity and honor govern privacy issues. Confidentiality is the result of love as much as a corollary of decency.

I’m concerned that we may be losing both: civility and decency. Love seems to be missing. Our confusion about public and private matters, coinciding with voyeuristic tendencies riding the internet’s rails of information saturation, exacerbates the issue.

Some things are personal and should be kept private. When they are unfortunately made public, it’s shameful.

Ponder this...

Levi Johnston (who had described himself as “sex on skates”via MySpace) demonstrated the civility of a goat when he discussed the personal and private details of his sexual technique on The Tyra Banks Show. As millions watched he revealed more than he realized. Johnston’s mother, Sherry, and sister Mercede, sat next to Levi and laughed as he and Tyra traded winks and jokes. Young Levi behaved like a beast and betrayed Bristol Palin, the mother of his four-month-old son, with giggles and swollen self-importance.

There wasn’t enough love, decency, civility or honor on that television set to temper the boy’s words. Deeply personal, intimate and private moments went public. Salacious comments fueled the exchange. Tyra leaned in close to the boy, feigned intimacy and probed for more secrets. He fell for the trap. He forgot the words of Proverbs 5:3-4. “The lips of a seductive woman are oh so sweet; her soft words are oh so smooth. But it won't be long before she's gravel in your mouth, a pain in your gut, a wound in your heart.”

Flushed and full of himself, Levi told the world the secrets he’d promised Bristol he’d share only with her. In that moment his shame became ours.

How could he? If you haven’t asked yourself that question, you should.

Was it just immaturity? Levi told Neal Karlinsky of Good Morning America he wasn’t ready for marriage. “It’s just…me not being mature enough, or something, and having a kid and thinking…it could be better – better for us to separate for a while.” Really? It’ll be better? Hmmm. That’s what my dad told my sister and brother and me when he betrayed our family and left us. If the pile he left us in was “better,” I’d like to ask, “Better than what?” But, that’s not the point of this blog…

Here’s the point. Some things are personal, intimate and private; some things are not, and we better learn the difference because there is no upside to confusing which is which.

So, how do you know? What’s personal and private? What’s personal and public?

The answer is found in love. Love will guide you.

Love helps you know which personal matters to make public.

Do you love Jesus? Is your love personal, deep and meaningful? Going public with your love honors Him. Publicly praising God contextualizes your life and explains why you are who you are.

Do you love your husband? Is your love personal, deep and meaningful? Going public with your love honors him. Tell your friends how much you love him and everyone wins.

Do you love your church? Is your love personal, deep and meaningful? Opening up about your commitment to the Church strengthens your witness. Telling people about your congregation’s ministry adds value to others.

Do you love your wife? Is your love personal, deep and meaningful? Going public with your love strengthens your marriage and blesses your bride. Tell your secretary, your teammates and your neighbors how much you love your wife. Keep saying it: “I love her!”

Love also helps you know what to keep private.

Do you love your children? Is your knowledge of them personal, deep and confidential? Of course it is! So don’t speak of their private struggles, failures or weaknesses. Preserve the trusting safety of your family circle. Never take their private matters public.

Do you love your spouse? Is your knowledge of them personal, intimate and private? Of course! So don’t tell others about your intimate moments. Don’t publicize details you privately cherish. Don’t embarrass them. Don’t shame them. Don’t ever put them down in public. There are things the two of you should share with no one but each other!
Love gives clarity.

Personal is sometimes private, but not always. Love helps you know the difference. And if you still can’t figure it out, ask advice of the one whose issues you're about to make public. Tell them what you’re planning to reveal to the world. If you’re not sure whether it’s OK to take their personal matters public, they’ll tell you.

Trust me on this one….we all need more love.

1 John 4:7-11 - "Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another."

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Awesome Easter Festival!

Way to Go Creekers!
2009 was our largest Easter Festival ever!

Here's some numbers:

- 800 hot dogs and bags of chips given away
- 1000 free sno cones given away
- 1000 drinks given away
- And nearly 150 Creeker volunteers giving their time to bring the Kingdom of God to our community!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

An Easter Clinic!

Today the Easter Festival was a clinic in how we trust God in adversity and look for what He's gonna do next!

When it started raining 30-minutes before we were supposed to start, there was no panic, just prayer and action! The rain jackets went on, the umbrellas up, the egg hunts went inside, the praise team under the tent and it was awesome!

Way to go Audie and Steve and Amber and Lisa and Cindy and Harold and all you other leaders and partners who just kept on going. Way to go!
I'll blog with more pics and info about the Festival later!

See you tomorrow morning to celebrate the Resurrection!!!

Friday, April 10, 2009

How About 9?

I want to ask again for many of you to come to the 9am Celebration this weekend!

Of course if you're bringing friends who want to come at 11 that's awesome . . . For the rest of us, let's empty the seats at 11 so that our guests can hear about the empty tomb!

And then let's ask God to fill those empty seats! Who are you praying for? Who have you invited?

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Missio Dei - A Suggestion?

The Sending God.

Some more Missio Dei thoughts. Below is a quote by the pastor of church in California where Todd & Tracy Freuhaf are engaged - and it is spot on!

And then below that is a link to a great blog and videos showing a group of people just like you and me who are full-on on mission!

"To Be On Mission: To be an authentic Christian is to be on mission. It is the great rip-off of our time that people believe they can be Christians and have nothing to do with God’s mission. Jesus said to his disciples that He was sending them in the same way the Father had sent Him (John 20:21). And yet somehow we have come to see the Great Commission as the Vague Suggestion. This is a monumental failure. To be a Christian is to be called to mission."

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Why Do We Have the Easter Festival?

A, B or C?

A) Because there's a lot of kids in town who don't get to hunt Easter Eggs and we want to help fill that void for those families?
B) Because Easter is the most important holiday in the Christian calendar and we need to do something to celebrate it with our community?
C) Because we want all these people to come to church at Oso Creek!

We're going to spend over $3,000 on Saturday! There's gonna be 150 Creekers serving! Why? What's the goal?

A, B or C? Wrong. Easter eggs are nice. Celebrating Easter is great. If unchurched folks are move to come to Oso Creek then praise God. But none of those is it!

Our goal is that people will see the Kingdom of God through us and our serving them -- and ultimately they will have a relationship with God! Any other goal is not of God!

We don’t serve just to be nice people . . . . And when we serve people we aren’t social workers, but we’re Kingdom builders. We want to move from Serving to Relationship to Kingdom.

On Monday night I challenged our leaders that even though on Saturday we'll be on our campus to pretend that we are in a foreign country around people who have never heard of God and God has put us on a mission to bring His Kingdom to that community. . . .

I challenged them and I’m gonna challenge you to think like a church planter/missionary on Saturday . . . I want to ask all of you to come away with 3 new relationships from Saturday – 3 people who are far from God who you truly befriend.

You see we are building bridges to the Kingdom of God . . . to eternity!

So I ask you to pray. Pray that the Holy Spirit will be there and pour Himself out. Without God's power it will be nothing - with it heaven and earth will be moved. And pray that God will use you to bring His Kingdom to people who desperately need Him.

Easter Saturday Serve!

"Do you love who your talking to more than you love what you are saying?"

Think about that quote for a minute. . . I read it yesterday in a great book called Search and Rescue: Becoming a Disciple Who Makes a Difference by Neil Cole (HIGHLY recommend it!)

Think about the quote some more. . . .

Is it about you and what you have to say or do? Or, are you asking God to help you selflessly consider that individual He has given you the opportunity to serve and love?

THIS SATURDAY we have an incredible opportunity to serve potentially thousands of people - one at a time - at our Easter Festival . . . and it requires many of us! So far there are 120 Creekers signed up and we need 30 more servants to have the greatest impact!

Are you signed up? If not call Audie (960-9551) or email her by clicking here!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Easter Week Meditation . . .

As we celebrate the most historically important week in the history of the world, I want to encourage you to take some portions of the Bible and meditate on them.

Meditating (which you've probably heard me define as 'chewing the cud') is simply letting the words and thoughts and idesa roll around in your mind. Spending some time in quiet asking God to reveal to you: 'What does this mean?' 'How does this apply to me?'
And then just keeping parts of the Scripture that stand out on your mind throughout the day (I make notecards and carry them around).

Psalm 119 says: "Teach me, O Lord, to follow every one of your principles. Give me understanding and I will obey your law; I will put it into practice with all my heart. Make me walk along the path of your commands, for that is where my happiness is found."

It is God's Spirit using God's Word that changes our life!

Here are two passages that I would encourage you to use to meditate on this week:

1 Peter 1:3-5

Luke 24

God, give us passion for you and fire to love you! Show us the power of the resurrection of Jesus! Give us great expectation because He rose from the dead!

Friday, April 3, 2009

Town Hall for Hope!

As we talk about being On Mission in our city - there is probably no issue right now that is grabbing more people's attention and stealing more of their hope for life -- than our economy!

What's a biblical approach to our current economic situation? Do we have to fear, or can we have hope?

We have the opportunity to participate with hundreds of churches around the US on April 23rd as we are going to host Dave Ramsey's Town Hall for Hope at Oso Creek.

Click here and check out what it's all about or just watch the video below.

This is a great opportunity not just to learn, but to also bring others with us who need to hear about God's money management principles and God's hope!

5 Reasons . . . .

5 Reasons Why You Should Come to the 9am Celebration on Easter Sunday . . .

1) I will be there!

2) You will be saving a seat at the 11am Celebration for someone who does not know Jesus!

3) You can volunteer to help serve and meet all the new people at 11am!

4) Those unchurched friends who you invite can come with you at 9am and then they will have the rest of their Easter Day with their family!

5) By intentionally giving the most convenient seats to those who need Jesus we are living On Mission!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Happy Birthday Cindy!

Today is my beautiful wife's birthday! And this is one of my favorite pics of her and our beautiful daughters she has poured into.

I chose her gifts around a Proverbs 31 theme because she possesses the strength and wisdom and grace and faithfulness and care for her family and nobility that Proverbs 31 talks about.

Many of you don't know her well because she is quiet, chooses her words and moments. And I admire that about her. I watch how she gently and wisely leads women at Oso Creek and I'm in awe!

Happy Birthday! This is a cool gift some friends left this morning as she was out talking our puppies for a walk.

And the Envelope Please . . .

How has God been speaking to you through your envelope?
[If you have no idea what I'm talking about then check out this post]

Are you still saying 'Send Me!'? Are you 'All In'?

A few of you have kept the deal and shared your envelope story on

Go check em' out . . . and then tell us about how God is sending you . . . and remember there's no 'small' God story!