Archive for January, 2009

Quick Post #2

Right now I’m waiting for the bus to pick me up, and this big black dog walked by. It reminded me of the craziest thing that’s happened to me in a long time.

On a hot and humid day last summer Amanda and I rode our bikes from my house to my sisters. As night fell a big thunder and lightning storm rolled in, and we decided to chance it and ride the three miles back to my house. As soon as we we five blocks away, the heavens opened and immediatly we were drenched to the bone. The power went out and everything was pitch black except our blinky lights and the occasional bolt of lightning.

It was pretty scary and kind of hilarious, and all the way home people were standing on their darkened porches watching the storm. As we turned onto my street I veered onto the sidewalk a few houses before mine. Just at that moment a huge clap of thunder crashed, a bolt of lightning flashed and the neighbors huge black dog came barreling off the porch barking an chasing after me. And then he bit me. Right in the meaty part of the thigh. I yelled at the owners “Your dog BIT ME!” and left my bike in my yard and ran soaking wet to check my wound. When I realized, yes, I was bleeding I marched back over there to scold them. I think I told them something about “keeping their dogs tied up” but I’m not sure. They offered me a beer and I declined, marched back home, put a bandaid on and dried off.

The next day we left for vacation, and while we were gone they left a card and a Peace Lily. Which was very thoughtful.


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This post is a part of Sunday Setlists! Go check out what other churches are doing!

I’ve been looking forward to this week, maybe even more than our official launch service. After all the visitors and celebrations last week, it was so good to just have church. I tried to take some video of the morning. It’s at the end of the post. I was pretty busy most of the time, so its about 45 seconds long but it gives you a good idea of what our setup is like every week. I asked Bryce if he’d take video of some of the worship set too. He got just a little bit, the sound is terrible, but at least my singing was in tune 😉 !

Opener – All We Need (Hall) – D Here is a very very short clip from Sunday morning. My “cameraman” got distracted by his friend who came in late.

Dismiss kids to classes, and a short coffee break.

For Who You Are (Hillsong) – D

Here I am to Worship (Hughes) – D

Reign in Us (Starfield) – G

Hosanna (Hillsong) – E


Communion – Nothing but the Blood – D

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Encouragement is Nice

I got an email today from someone at church:

Someone left us a hand written note. Here’s what it said:

“I LOVE how you do the worship music! You’ve made it work in this space so well… it’s not scary to sing along… somehow you’ve made the acoustics work. THANKS!!!!”

Thought you might like know that people think you are doing a good job!”

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Sunday Setlists 01/18/09

This post is a part of Sunday Setlists.

Yesterday was our 1 year anniversary and the official launch for Lifehouse!
We had a lot of friends, families and visitors. The cafeteria/auditorium that meet in was packed with people. Even my grandma came to support us. After the service we all had meatball sandwiches and cake together in the gym, and the food was amazing! Thank you Lisa!

We got to have a full band – which meant we got to set up the big sound system. It’s a LOT of work. It’s worth it to me, to be able to have a drum set. I had to borrow a few friends to play bass and guitar. I am so grateful for the talented friends I have!

Here’s what our set looked like:

Unchanging (Tomlin) – E

Coffee break and Kids dismissal

My Life Belongs to You (Derick W. Thomas) – E We reprised Unchanging, building on the bridge, taking it really huge on the final chorus and I went right into this next song. This song is infinitely better with drums. Especially with the drummer Danny – we a did a calypso groove on the chorus that made me want to dance. Seriously.

Desert Song (Fraser) – D Joi and I led this song together, like the recording. It’s one of our favorites (as a church).

How Great is Our God (Tomlin) – F This is a whole step lower than I normally lead this song in, but I lead it in a lower key so I could sing the harmonies above the melody in the 2nd verse easier.

Rescue (Anderson) – Bb Annnnddddddd…. this is a whole step higher than usual. I think playing it in Ab was too low for the guys to sing along with. This is absolutely in my range and I’m not sure why I haven’t always done it in Bb.

Doxology (Walker) – D LOVE Tommy Walker’s arrangement. If you haven’t heard it, look it up.

We had a great time yesterday morning, and I was pooped afterwards!

How was your Sunday?

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About Me Pt. 3

So, for the final installment! Please read part one and part two first, I swear if you do this will make more sense. It’s all rather long-winded but I think it’s worth a read.

I did all the fairly normal things after high school – got a job, went to community college, moved in with friends. On top of my normal life stuff I moved straight from high school student to staff in the high school ministry. On top of leading worship, I also lead groups, directed activities, went to camps, sang in the big church choir, ran media, and if you can believe it, even more. I’m tired just thinking about it. Being a naive little girl I was honestly scared to say no because I didn’t want to hurt anybodies feelings or let anyone be disappointed in me. On a deeper level I believed that my spirituality and status with God was tied to how much I did. That was never stated in words at the church, but the way volunteers were treated and how some of the leadership showed value to their staff made it pretty clear to me at the time how a ‘committed’ Christian should act.

I don’t want to get carried away with negativity because there were plenty of positive experiences during those years I did youth staff. I made some of my best friends during that time, married Bryce, learned a lot about leadership, and about myself. It wasn’t until after we were married that Bryce started to really notice how much of myself I was giving away to the church. It was sucking away my free time, my school time, and I could barely find time to work on top of that. Of the many reasons that prompted us to leave that church, the problem was that I was pouring out my life into church work and getting little in return. Being able to be mentored as a worship leader was a dead end. Being a female, not sounding professional enough, and probably a lot of things I’ll never know made it so.

We left completely burned out and burned up. Eventually we started taking a membership class at another big church here in Portland. After we’d finished the class I tried to plug into the music ministry, but was told they didn’t have room for any more musicians. Hrmph. In hindsight I recognize my reaction was completely selfish, but I told Bryce that I was done with that church. And I refused to go back. And so began my time of churchlessness. During the next two to three years I went through a range of feelings. Anger, bitterness, depression, complacency. I was pissed at God for giving me a passion and then not giving me an outlet. Bryce and I fought about church and I was sad a lot.

Gradually as the time went by, life happened. Good things, bad things. We bought a house, got a dog, made new friends. My mother and grandfather died. I started to realize that maybe I needed some time away from church to get a grip on what real life was. To keep it short, I came to a realization that following Jesus has less to do with church programs and a lot more to do with heart.

Stuff with Lifehouse also happened gradually. I was asked to lead worship a few times in the beginning of 2008. Bryce was reluctant to make any commitments. We decided to do an extended trial period this fall/winter. January was approaching and we felt like we should stay. And so we did.

wet fenway

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A Day In My Life

I brought the camera around with me today and shot a video of a typical day working. It’s a little long, but please watch!

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Quick Post #1

I’ve downloaded the wordpress app to my iPhone. This is my idea: to do quick posts when the inspiration hits. Here is my very first:

Those guys/gals who hang outside the library, coffee shops and new seasons annoy the crap out of me with their clipboards and incessant interuptions. You know who I mean- they want your signature to legalize pot. Or for any ballot measure. These guys certainly are worse than people at kiosks in the mall but not nearly as bad as the men in the robes selling books downtown.

Don’t make eye contact. Say nothankyou and walk away. Quickly.

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