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Every Sunday morning at 7:30am

August 6, 2012

Are you bored or unfulfilled? Does life feel “bland”?

That’s where I found myself four years ago. I want to share some of my adventure hoping it will encourage you.

For years I had been in love with my routine. Every Sunday morning at 7:30am I flipped on the lights in my large, comfortable office to begin preparing my heart and head for our first worship service. I’d beg God to let us experience his presence in the service, allow me to encourage someone, and to use us to expand his Kingdom. This had been my weekly routine for twelve years.

Each week after the second service our family would usually join my parents or my in-laws (both lived in our town) for lunch.

Despite ministry “success”, my life was beginning to feel . . . “ordinary”. There’s nothing wrong with ordinary. But for me ordinary morphed from routine to monotony to lifeless.

I wanted to scream! Not because anything was wrong it just wasn’t right. For me, life had become tediously dull.

Did I just need a kick in the pants or a pep talk? After all, maybe a mature adult’s life is supposed to be bland? Had I lost my focus? Had I lost my love for people and God’s mission?

Truthfully, I loved and continue to love the people of this faith community. And, I desperately wanted to see life-change!

Later I would learn that God was actually preparing my life for a new chapter.

“Plant a church! I know nothing about that. How will we pay our bills? Where will we meet? What about our comfortable life?” As God began revealing his next step to us, these were some of the questions my wife and I battled through before taking our biggest and most difficult step of faith at the end of 2008.

We took the leap. Not because we felt completely prepared but we were completely convinced God was leading. This may have been a step for some but it felt like a giant, scary leap to us. Adventure here we come!

We worked as hard as we could alongside some wonderful people. But after two-and-a-half years our new church closed. Closed?! Crap! That wasn’t the kind of adventure we had in mind. We envisioned lives being changed for decades. Why did God lead us to take a difficult leap of faith that ended in a big, fat, public failure? I know God led it all but that’s exactly how it felt at the time.

After closing the church, (almost a year ago now) God moved our family from our comfortable place in West Texas to the beautiful coastal town of Ventura, California. The leadership team and church family are full of extraordinary people. We are in love. This is the largest church in the most beautiful place I’ve ever served. But that’s not the best part.

Wanna know the best part? I’m 41 years old and my wife and I have experienced the lowest lows and the highest highs of our lives during the past four years. In other words, we’re back in the adventure!

I’m so glad that God entrusted me with this adventure. I’m grateful I took the leap. I’m grateful my wife was willing to grab my hand and leap with me.

If you’re tired of flipping on the same old light switch (metaphorically), I want to suggest a book. Ken Davis’ new book Fully Alive will remind you that your heart is intended to beat fast. I believe wholeheartedly in this message. I’ll review the book tomorrow. In the meantime, click HERE to get your copy.

  1. Marilyn Pennington permalink

    God bless you and Ginger Mark! You both will always hold a special place in my heart! I am proud of you for having the courage to step out in faith and follow God’s leading. May the adventure continue! Love you!

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