A Season of Good News — The Sacrament of Party – 10 Celebrations in 10 Days

I love a good party. Count me in! I also love a good “Top Ten” list. So combining the two, below is my“Top Ten Celebrations” I’ve been part of in the past ten days. Now in fairness, there’s not the usual countdown from 1-10. I love them all! So drum roll please!

Mentoring — OK so I fudged a little on this one! We celebrated the young men and women who we’ve mentored and also have learned from this past school year. Three GREAT mentoring initiatives, Men of Distinction, Boys2Men, and Lead Forward. Not to mention Rockbrook Reading Initiative and Operation Success. Thanks Ms. Beckman, Mr. Owens, Bob Johnson, Brannon Cox and all of our wonderful mentors!

Commissioning — Saying YES to those who want to carry the gospel message into the world in the hundreds of ways we get to do so is EXCITING! Kevin Gunn was commissioned to officiate at the wedding of close friends and relatives. Carry the light Kevin!

Grand Parenting— Being “Papa Jim” is one of my favorite roles. Heritage is what we receive and legacy is what we can impart. We are grateful for our three grands (Titus, Hannah & Jimmie) and to be able to celebrate Titus and his fourth birthday in Oklahoma. You’re growing up buddy!

Welcoming — Friday mornings are always a highlight as I get to participate with the Grateful Dads in smiling and giving out candy to the students arriving at the LHS Harmon campus. The cherry on the top is getting work along side Mr. Ben Harmon (campus namesake), who at 83 just keeps on going. Thanks Mr. Harmon!

Partnering — Strategic partnering is both smart and rewarding. I am so enriched by the partnership Loving Community has with the LISD (57,000 students) and the leadership of friend and Superintendent Dr. Kevin Rogers, School Board, and Educator Team. Thanks Dr. Rogers and Lyndsay Ayers for the inspiring breakfast!

Crying — Being moved to tears happens often as I rub shoulders with painful heartache and in turn unbelievable accomplishment. At the Central Zone Year End Principal’s Lunch we heard stories of graduating seniors who defied all odds, most first generation Americans and non-English speakers who are now graduating at the top of their class with full ride college scholarships. Thanks Mr. Plunkett & AVID!

Discipling — Training men and women to live as missionaries where they’re already doing life is the mantra and heart beat Forge Dallas and our missionary residency program. I am humbled to serve as the residency director and to see added to the Forge tribe ten new graduates. Thanks Ryan Hairston, Kevin Davis and Forge Dallas Team!

Coaching — Give a person a fish and you feed them for a day. Teach them to fish and you feed them (and others) for a lifetime. Coaching LHS STUCO juniors and seniors as they learned what it meant to mentor sixth graders was nerve wracking and life giving! 🙂 Our future is bright in the hands of these talented and giving student mentors. Thank Ms. Stamey, Ms. Duarte, and Ms. Hall!

Celebrating — Who doesn’t like at wedding? At Loving Celebrations every week (and sometimes several times a week) we get to celebrate with couples and their families as they take part in the miracle of marital love.

Collaborating — We believe we are better together! Collaborating in the community and serving alongside of business, faith communities, educators, government, and other non-profits was the goal of our Community Collaboration Conversation. May we seek the good of our community and in that find our good. His fame NOT ours!

Oh my goodness! Who gets to have this much fun and celebration? 

Perhaps Jesus, right? No really, think about it for a moment. Hugh Halter in his book “Happy Hour – The Sacrament of Holy Merriment” reminds us,

“From the beginning of time, and throughout the scriptures, God’s people pattern their lives around celebration, feasts, social gatherings, levity, story-telling, eating, drinking, laughter, and listening. It was a means of holding the fabric of society together.” 

Forge International founder and author Alan Hirsch has said, “Party in Sacrament.” Likewise, Bob Goff author of “Love Does” writes that we need to “do less Bible study and more Bible doing.” I agree!

Tonight we finished this rewarding and tiring stretch of life and ministry by dancing. No really dancing! A group of wonderful Loving Community volunteers for the third year danced the night away as sponsors and chaperones of the Durham Middle School Year Eighth Grade Year End Dance!

Today we set out on a week of vacation in the mountains of Colorado to rest. As we do, we will be reflecting on the season of good news it has been. Party on Jesus (and his followers)!

Live Humbly & Kind ~ Jim

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  1. Sharon Mustain May 27, 2017 at 8:53 am · · Reply

    I’m so grateful to be able to “party on” with you, Jesus, and so many other volunteers these volunteers these past ten days. What a party!

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