Saturday, September 16, 2017

staying the same

I loved this sentence I just read in a leadership book I'm studying,

when the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of changing, we are ripe for making a move.  Awareness also involves being able to see the possibility of living in a new way.  

In the chapter I'm reading, the study is in the context of Moses leading the Israelites, and just as they got going they faced the Red Sea.

It discusses how God rarely if ever takes us the fastest, most logical way - He has too much to teach us by leading us through the 'roundabout way'.

Just this week I had a chance to spend some time chatting with our pastor and we were discussing some of the things people have been through this past year.  And how in our earthly - limited human way it's impossible to see the whole picture and especially difficult to see the 'why'.  But, we can have such confidence in the fact that God, the creator of the entire universe and all of it's inhabitants can see everything from the beginning of time to the end.   He sees how it all fits together and all supports our journeys.  And all it takes for us to 'change or move on' is trust in His all-knowing plan and surrendering our lives to His way.

My prayer is to see the change He needs in me and in turn to lead well through change which always makes us stronger than we were before!  I do not want to stay the same!!

Monday, September 11, 2017

weekend report

By 7:00 a.m. Saturday the GoMissions team was ready for action downtown Mansfield as we provided drinks and cheered on those running in the Spherion MidOhio 13er!  Here are just a couple of shots.  We used sidewalk chalk to write encouraging words on the street, and rang cowbells loudly to encourage those running past us!


Bill and others wore signs telling the runners what we were providing.

As always Darlene had our missions booth looking great! 

GO  Mark - everyone cheered even the little ones got into it!

Taking your family to serve at a GoMissions event is such a great way to teach them about missions!  It provides a platform for explaining why we need to serve others - both locally, nationally as well as globally.

Later Saturday and Sunday again...  I stood and looked at all the people that the Lord brought through our doors this weekend and am amazed that He allows us the privilege of leading!  It's so humbling to work on projects, watch the time come for them to actually happen and see people come and get needs met!   Oh my goodness what an honor to watch my brothers and sisters in the Lord worshipping, serving, caring for others just being the church!  And our church was definitely hopping this weekend!

We had the honor to welcome Les Parrott to speak in our weekend services and then for the Parrott's together to lead us in the Fight Night event.  Everyone was so blessed and had such a great time together!

As I sometimes do, while amazing things were happening in the auditorium, I wondered around Crossroads and watched the behind-the-scenes ministry that takes tons of organizing in order to care for all of our Crossroads' Kids and teens - just pure joy to see them growing in the Lord!

Here are some pictures from the weekend!

Thankful for our faithful children's workers who are dedicated to teaching
Biblical truths to our kids that will shape them for all of eternity!

Our student ministry praise team lead the youth in worship!

I found Pastor Jesse acting like he was running tech in the
student ministry room with Dylan!
Our praise team lead us in worship in the big room!

The response to Fight Night was unbelievable!

Les and Leslie are amazing communicators!

Signing books

Felt like we'd been friends for a long time!
Our setlist:

Announcements on Video

Glorious Day
Call Upon the Lord
Throne Room
Break Every Chain
No Longer Slaves
City Center Update - Intro of Nicole Blakely and Dr. Les Parrott -Pastor Dave Vance
Message: Dr. Les Parrott
Dismiss: Pastor Dave/Les
Exit Song:  No Longer Slaves

To watch our services live on-line, go to

Thursday, September 7, 2017

always preparing

As I was working on Christmas at Crossroads today, I realized I was doing what I'm always doing - preparing!

As I listened to some pieces and parts for Christmas I got a call from Les Parrott who will be with us this weekend at Crossroads. He was calling to answer my final questions regarding preparations for he and his wife to be with us this weekend.  He seems like someone that would be a lot of fun to have as a friend - so it caused me to be even more excited about the weekend.

So I continued to prepare by adding notes to my Les and Leslie folder!

Earlier this afternoon at Crossroads - two local art teachers stopped by with my friend Vicki following up on some details we needed to discuss in order to prepare for a "Coffee and Painting" event we're going to be hosting in a couple of weeks.  Who needs wine anyway!  Ha ha!

More preparing...

As I prayed for wisdom with our Christmas services I pictured God preparing to send His son to earth - preparing the event we now call Christmas.  How careful I want to be to preserve the integrity of that sacrifice.  How I long to have even a tiny understanding of how terrified Mary was when she was told she was carrying the Messiah, the promised one she had been taught about since she was born.  She knew what it would cost her, her reputation, possibly Joseph the man she hoped to marry and any chance of a normal life.  Still she chose obedience - all part of God's amazing plan...

And when the time had come he sent His son for us and now I need to prepare well and somehow tell the amazing story in a way that conveys who this Savior really was!   I really, really covet your prayers!

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

weekend report

From the moment I saw Ernesto practicing with the vocalists, to the first notes I heard on stage at rehearsal this week, I knew we were in for something special!

Ernesto Alcantara blessed us by guest worship leading this weekend and it lit up the house!  He's a gifted communicator whose personal relationship with the Lord shines through everything he says and does.  We enjoyed getting to know his wife Vanesa and daughter as well - it was amazing.

Ernesto leading vocal rehearsal

Pastor Dave lead us into the discovery that we can and should be both deep and wide in our relationship with the Lord and others, as well as our ministry's focus.  He left us with a challenge to each begin to pray that God will present us with an opportunity to lead another to Christ.  Can you imagine how that would change our community?  More than fancy programs, worrying about trivial things - just tell someone about your relationship with Jesus!  So we can go deep spiritually as well as reaching out and with God's help - go wide into our community, into our jobs, wherever God places us - just reach out!

Our setlist:

Welcome- Announcements - Judy Trueblood (our front office manager extraordinaire)

Great Are You Lord
The Lion and the Lamb
Have it All
My Heart is Yours

Hurricane Harry offering challenge - Pastor Dave

Message:  Deep and Wide - Pastor Dave Vance

Ending Song:  My Heart if Yours

To watch our services go to

You'll want to be with us again this week when special guest Les Parrott will teach our 3 weekend services!   There is still time to register for the 2:00 Sunday FIGHT NIGHT event - but only a few seats left so hurry!!   You can also use the above link to get to our website and register!

See you Saturday night!

Monday, August 28, 2017

weekend report

I knew this weekend was going to be something special and I was right!

We hosted guest speaker, A. J. Sherrill from the Mars Hill church this weekend.
A. J. Sherrill
He shared a great challenge encouraging our congregation to be involved in community!   We launched our Fall Community sign-ups and have so many groups and classes to offer!  It will be a very strong Fall! Thank you Doug Taylor!

We had the privilege to shoot a music video at our new downtown City Center with the Young Adult worship team and used that under the first song of worship.  This is not the mixed audio version - just a live chunk during rehearsal.

It gave us both the opportunity to show our congregation an update on the City Center progress as well as feature our Young Adult group as they launched their fall program last night.  They had nearly 60 in attendance and had a great time of worship, teaching and fellowship!  This area of our ministry is SO vital to our continued maturity and the invitation into ministry to our younger adults!  And to provide the connection so vitally needed in a large ministry!  Our 18-35 year olds meet once each month for a service and also have small groups that meet each month.  We are so blessed by them!

From the minute the first music video/song began in worship - I don't know when I've heard louder singing from our congregation - I closed my eyes and just imagined for a moment being surrounded by brothers and sisters for all of eternity worshipping our Lord!

Darin is such a faithful - excellent drummer!

Jocelyn lead us to the thrown!

Tammy serves so faithfully on the team!

Our 4th weekend team prepared well and lead us strongly!
When we see the Lord someday we will not be able to resist falling to our knees in worship and praising Him!

It was SO strong!  A huge thank you for everyone's hard work on stage and behind the scenes our tech team was amazing too working to make the weekend so great!

Our Setlist:

Jocelyn and Pastor Jesse did a live Welcome and told us about Les and Leslie Parrott and Young Adult announcements.

With Everything/ From the Inside Out
The Stand
Lord I Need You
Do It Again

Bumper video transition

Doug Taylor promoted our Fall Community Groups and introduced A. J.

Message:  Communities - A. J. Sherrill

Exit video:  Pastor Dave Vance ended our services by encouraging every one of our congregation to join a group or class!  It should be a really strong Fall!

To register for our Fall groups go to

You can also register to attend our FIGHT NIGHT event in 2 weeks with Les and Leslie Parrott by going to the above link and clicking on events.

I pray you all have a blessed week as we're planning special things for next weekend too!

Thursday, August 24, 2017

weekend report

It's been a while since I've written.

I messed up and lost my domain temporarily - but was able to get it back fortunately!  So here I am.

It's been so busy at Crossroads that I barely get to think about what's next, but thankfully I get to do life with staff I love - while pursuing our ultimate goal to provide as many opportunities for people to know our Savior and grow closer to Him in their daily lives as we possibly can.  Always with a focus on eternity, not the problems of today!

As we carry on the daily work I try take time to praise Him and thank Him for all he's given us at Crossroads.

This past week our praise team did an awesome job leading us in a great time of worship with our praise choir as Pastor Jesse completed the Desperation series.

 Our Setlist:

Glorious Day
Amazing Grace My Sins Are Gone
Revelation Song
Series Bumper video
Message: The Gift of Desperation  - Jesse Rider
Exit Song - Wonder

It's amazing to watch ministry during the week when the services are over and not everyone is there.

I watched a beloved friend who serves weekly move about the office cleaning the bathrooms and washing our towels.  She just quietly moves through our work zone, doing what she does to make our areas so wonderfully clean and neat!

Today was also a good example of the church at work as we hosted a funeral meal for one of our precious senior attendees.  My husband and I had been in his families' home for card parties, Christmas get togethers and meals together.  He always had some teasing for me and I'll miss him. This weekend there will be one more empty seat in our auditorium, instead of being there he's sitting with my dad, looking at the face of the King of Kings!  How amazing is that?

We have a team of volunteers that do a beautiful job of serving our funeral meals at Crossroads and I got to witness them 'doing what they do' so well to comfort and serve a family experiencing loss.

the Crossroads kitchen full of generous serving

This is ministry.

And I'll never tire of being part of it!

Sunday, August 6, 2017

weekend report...among other things

It was another powerful weekend at Crossroads!  Pastor Dave started the Desperation Series today by teaching on 'Fighting Desperation', this is going to be a great series of study and worship!  I heard multiple comments on what the service meant to them - I'm so thankful!

To listen to Part 1 of Desperation - go to on Monday and click on Messages to find the message you want to listen to.   This weekend's message goes up Monday.

I'm so thankful for our praise team and their dedication!

Our setlist:

Jeanette Chase our Director of Family Ministry took care of announcements for us, as we anticipate hosting the simulcast of the Global Leadership Summit next Thursday and Friday! (there are still tickets available on our website)

Do It Again
My Heart Is Yours
Glorious Day
Bumper video
Message:  Desperation Pt. 1 - Fighting Desperation
Special Music: Even If
God is Able

I've just never been more thankful for our church and all it's doing to reach people for the Lord! There were more first time visitors in attendance again today that we got to show around and still others signing up to be baptized next Sunday taking next steps in their spiritual maturity!  Nothing more encouraging!

As we prepare to learn from some of the top leaders around the world this week at the Global Leadership Summit, I've been reading Strengthening the Soul of Your Leadership.  In it I've read about Moses' leadership journey.  Quite the story!  A major part of his surrender to the Lord involved solitude.  An extended time alone with the Lord.  I love this description of the work of solitude.

Just as the physical law of gravity ensures that sediment swirling in a jar of muddy river water will eventually settle and the water will become clear, so the spiritual law of gravity ensures that the chaos of the human soul will settle if it sits still long enough.

I hope to grab a little solitude, to sit still before the the Lord this week and prepare well for all of the leadership principles I'll get to learn and be reminded of at the end of the week.

I pray your week will be full of some 'settling' and listening to the will of the Lord!