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Pressing On


I love to read. Books are a passion for me. I have read hundreds of books over the last several years. If I am really into a book, I can’t hardly put it down. I have been known to read books in a day or two. I think one thing that keeps me going are chapter breaks. I really love to read books with short simple chapters that share a focused principle or concept, then, ends the thought with a chapter break before moving on. It kind of gives me time to reflect and change gears before moving forward. Sometimes chapters even end with followup questions. I really like that.

Anyway, I feel like we have read and lived a few chapters so far in the journey of CrossLife. I would like to share some things we are learning through these chapters, mostly the hard way.

Chapter One:

  • Preparation and move to Southaven: garage sales, U-Hauls, car dollies, boxes, and broken furniture!
  • We learned our call was not necessarily to a particular place, but a particular task: making disciples.
  • Wise council was proved extremely valuable. Thanx, Mike Prince, Mike Evans, and Reach America!
  • Friendships have been an awesome source of strength and stability. I love our team.
  • Getting settled in and learning the cultural landscapes of suburban life.
  • Talking less and listening more. This proved the most difficult process for me.
  • Nay-sayers. Need I say more?

Chapter Two:

  • Saying goodbye: The Kelley family moved, Ed & Krystal moved on, Mike, Deby, and Woody moved on.
  • Failure. We learned about the deficiencies of our communication abilities. We neglected follow-ups. We lost several people.
  • We saw some people relapse, lie, steal, and manipulate. This has made it hard to maintain a compassionate and tender heart toward those who really want to change.
  • Helping people too much. Some people are beyond our ability to help.
  • We had to confront our severe limitations.

Chapter Three:

  • Today
  • We are basically about to start fresh again.
  • We have the same vision and mission, but we have a renewed passion and direction.
  • We are taking the lessons we’ve learned so far very serious, and adjusting some of the things we do.
  • I think my cynicism is subsiding a bit. Lord, help me!
  • …..

We have some very exciting things coming up soon that I will be sharing, like: new groups, new locations, new times, etc. Stay tuned!



4 Responses

  1. I’m not a church planter (yet…possibly) so I really can’t speak from experience but possibly I can relate things that I have read in ways it may help.

    Conerning Chapter 3, it’s interesting that you have to start fresh yet once again. Mark Driscoll and his church done this many times (often he calls this the “attacks of Satan”). I think it was to purge the leaven (fake people) from the church and also for him to reinvent himself and his theology. Mistakes had to be made so that he can learn what most effectively worked for his particular culture. After a couple of literal restarts in his church, his church really started taking off.

    The way you characterize yourself and your church is very similar to what I seen in Mark Driscoll’s biography. I pray that things really start taking off for Jesus Christ, and that His name can be known and glorified among the people of West Memphis.

    I hope this helps in some way…

  2. Thanx, bro. BTW, in case of any confusion, our sponsoring church, Trinity Baptist, is located in West Memphis, AR. We are in Southaven/Olive Branch, MS. We are still close with Trinity, and pastor, Kyle Lewallen, and, of course, their on staff church planter trainer, Mike Prince, but they no longer financially support us. We are now self-supporting, and soon to be self-propagating, and certainly indigenous.

    Anyway, I would certainly like to read more about Driscoll. I listen to his podcast.


  3. So if this is your book, I need to write the introduction. If chapter 1 starts with the move, the preface would be the seminary discussions in Robbie Horne’s class. I would write it, but I couldn’t repeat about half of it. I guess it would have to be on the down low!

  4. I would be interested to read your recaps of that class! I miss those crazy Mondays!

    Have you eaten any bean burritos lately?

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