Saying Goodbye to Saturday

As most of you know by now, we are making a pretty big change starting the weekend of February 11th and 12th.  That weekend we will no longer have our Saturday Weekend Experience at Lithopolis and will host all of our Experiences on Sunday only. This is a major change, as we have held church on Saturday for nearly nine years!  That’s almost as long as I’ve had my 2nd daughter, Audrey.  Wow.

I know that this decision might not be popular and might be hard to understand.  Just know that it is not one that we made lightly or quickly.  This is something we’ve been talking about for over six months.  If you like attending on Saturday, we know that this could certainly be an inconvenience. We understand that some people who work different shifts (my wife being one of them) may be affected by this change.  Many will miss the Saturday Experience, including me.  It is often one of my favorite groups of people to preach to on the weekend.

I thought I would take a moment to share a little more about why we are making this change.  I previously shared why we are making this change with our volunteers and our entire church in a video.  The reasons that I shared on that video are the primary reasons we are making the change.  Those reasons have not changed.  But I also know that sometimes people need to hear things in a different way to fully grasp the “why” behind the decision.  So here are a few other things that were considered as we made this decision.

SATURDAYS ARE HARD TO MAINTAIN THROUGHOUT THE YEAR.

  • We have found that people really enjoy Saturday evenings for church in the winter, and then winter ends and the crowd thins out. As soon as the weather breaks in the spring and the days get longer, people start into projects or outdoor sports that take their Saturdays.  We also see a decline in attendance near the end of the school year, and it rarely comes back until after the New Year.  We completely understand that people just want their entire Saturday to get things done. Because of this, it is hard to maintain two Weekend Experiences on Saturdays throughout the entire year. (Trust me. We tried.) By not having two Weekend Experiences, it severely limits our ability to find volunteers to help teach kid’s ministry, run cameras, help greet on the parking team and fill other important parts of the Weekend Experience.  We have many people who sacrifice by serving on Saturday and then coming back on to attend on Sunday.  I am indebted to those folks for their dedication and service to God and to our church.  Moving all of our Experiences to Sunday will help those families and will open up more opportunities for people to serve who can’t do both days each weekend.

SATURDAYS ARE HARD ON THE STAFF.

  • I know that most people don’t care about the “paid” folks at church, but I do.  Without them we can’t provide proper leadership and care for our church.  Having only one day off each week can put a severe strain on families, especially families where both the husband and wife work outside the home.  This might be hard for some of you to understand, but Saturday is never a day off when you know in the back of your mind that you have to preach, lead worship or coordinate lessons for an evening Experience.  Sure, you get the morning off, but you can’t make it to your kid’s events that run until 2pm or do something like leave town for the day to visit family.  I’m not asking anyone to feel sorry for the staff that get paid to lead and to serve in the church.  I’m just asking for understanding that this is something that can be a hardship for our families, and that matters.  I care about all of the people that God has brought to our team, and I want them to be healthy leaders, not burnout leaders.

SUNDAY IS STILL THE PRIMARY TIME TO REACH PEOPLE.

  • When it comes to people visiting or attending a church, Sunday is still ingrained in our culture as the day for church.  Sure, there are exceptions, but for the most part, people want to go to church on Sunday.  Perhaps for many of the reasons I already listed above.  Most people don’t even know that part of the reason we began Saturday Experiences was to facilitate multi-site (video based sermon delivery) and to open up more space on Sunday.  This has facilitated our Lancaster campus for many years, but growing our Saturday experience has been quite a challenge.  For this reason, we want to try our best to fit three Experiences in on Sunday mornings.  I contacted several pastors who hold the same experience times that we are moving to on Sunday (8:30/10/11:30a) and have found that most like it better than offering a Saturday experience.  Two pastors that I spoke with have higher attendance at 8:30am on Sunday morning than they did at their Saturday night Experience.  Will this happen for us? I’m not sure.  Every church’s culture is different.  However, the only way we will find out if this will help us reach more people on the weekend is if we give it a try!

WE HAVE TECHNOLOGY THAT FACILITATES LIVE BROADCAST ON SUNDAY.

  • Originally, we used Saturday’s Experience to play back the sermon at our Lancaster Campus on Sundays.  This past year, we were able to upgrade our network and to buy equipment that allows us to broadcast live to our Lancaster location on Sundays.  Prior to this change, moving from Saturday to Sunday only wasn’t even in the discussion.  We began to move down this road as we started to anticipate the future steps for our Lithopolis campus, including selling our building and moving to a new facility in Canal Winchester.  At the time, we didn’t know if selling our building meant that we would have to move to a portable facility on Sunday.  We began to move in this direction last year and have finally, after many months, figured out the live broadcast to our Lancaster Campus.  It’s not always perfect, but it’s pretty close now!

WE WERE PLANNING TO MOVE TO SUNDAY ONLY WHEN OUR NEW FACILITY IN CANAL WINCHESTER OPENS.

  • I’m sure not everyone lives in the world of church ministry, but when you do, you learn quickly about spaces and energy.  People don’t want to be sitting on top of other people, and yet not enough people in a room creates a low-energy experience that most don’t enjoy.  I say that because when we open our new broadcast location in CW, it will seat about 3x the amount of people that we can seat in Lithopolis currently.  With this room for growth, our plan when we open is to go to two Sunday AM Experiences.  Once we fill those, we will add more.  We want to use the building as much as possible, but we plan to “grow” into it.  The technology investment we made for live broadcast was in anticipation of this move, whenever it happens.

Again, I just wanted to share some of the rationale behind this decision.  I think that most of the time when people struggle with a leader’s decision, it is because they don’t know the “why” behind it.  That is why it was important to me to share with you some of the primary reasons for us making this change now.  We will continue to have discussions about the possibility of other evening experiences down the road at our campuses as we need to open up space to reach more people.  That is still our greatest desire, but we have to be smart about the limited resources we have in doing this.

We know that this change will also create some challenges for parking and flow between Experiences.  We have done many things in preparation to help mitigate those challenges (procured additional parking next door, purchase golf carts to transport quickly, etc.)  I’m sure we will still have challenges, and we will do our best to work through them.  It will be draining for me to preach three times in a row.  Honestly, I prefer to preach one on Saturday and two on Sunday, but this seems to be the best move for our church in this season.

I hope this change does not adversely affect you or your family’s schedule.  If you will not be able to attend our church on the weekends anymore because of this change, please contact your campus pastor. We will do our best to refer you to another great church with a schedule that would work best for you.  We know that we cannot please everyone, and we do not seek to do so.  In the end, we just want to please God and do what is best to continue our mission of helping people get on the path to God!

See you this weekend.

 

Words to Live By Resources

This past weekend we kicked off our Series Good Intentions talking about the Battle for your Mind. The reason so many of the good things we want to do never happen is because they are defeated in our thought life. Our spiritual enemy lies to us to keep us locked up with fear and insecurity when God has called us to step out in faith.

We must realize that God has given us the power to overcome the lies of our enemy. We can do this by taking every thought captive and making it obedient to Christ (2 Cor 10:5.) I truly believe that we can renew our thought life by filling it with faith-filled thoughts! Romans 10:17 says that “Faith comes from hearing the word of Christ.” If we only could get into our spirit what is true about us through Christ, I believe it would change the way we live. Our Good Intentions would turn into Obedient Actions.

I want to challenge you to begin a new discipline with me this year. It’s something I got from Pastor Craig Groeschel that he calls, “Words to Live By.” First, take some time to ask, “What negative thoughts are dominating my thinking?” Take a day or two to think about any insecurities, fears or defeating thoughts that are keeping you from doing what God created you to do. This might include some dreams in your life that you have given up on because you are afraid to take the first step. Write these negative thoughts down.

Now, ask yourself this question, “What spiritual truth will demolish these lies?” What has God said about you through His Word that flies directly in the face of the lies you were believing? Here are just a few.

  • I do not have a spirit of fear, but of power, love and a sound mind. (2 Tim 1:7)
  • I was created by God for great things – which he prepared in advance for me to do. (Eph 2:10)
  • I am a child of God. God loves me just as I am. (Jn 1:12)
  • I have the Power of God in me for everything I need for life and godliness. (2 Pet 1:3)

Once you write down the truth in response to the negative thoughts that are dominating your mind, begin saying them out loud every day. Make these declarations your faith-filled thoughts every morning. As you begin to say them every day, it will begin to reshape your thought life. Your faith will grow with each passing day as you declare and receive these truths in your mind. (Romans 12:2)

If we are going to turn our good intentions into obedient actions, we must first deal with the battle for our mind. This is the first step toward fulfilling the calling that God has on your life. Begin to make this part of your daily time with God and see what happens in 2017.

RESOURCES:

Here are My Words to Live By that I shared this past weekend:

  • I am a loving father who cares deeply for my family and will demonstrate my love to them just as my Heavenly Father did by sending His Son for me. 
  • I am not just raising daughters, I am raising strong, gifted young women who were created to impact the world for Christ. 
  • I will sacrifice my life so that I can serve them as the leader of this family. 
  • I will be the father and husband that my family needs to reach their fullest potential in Christ.
  • I will walk by the Spirit today, because God’s Spirit is strong within me.  The things of this world do not have a hold on me, because this world is not my home.  
  • I will not compromise my purpose or my future for anything self-serving. 
  • I set my eyes, my heart, my mind, my hands and feet on things above so that I may glorify God in everything I do.
  • God has put within me everything I need to be the kind of pastor and leader my church needs. 
  • I am a compassionate and godly leader who lives to serve others.
  • I will live my life in a manner that is worthy of the calling God has placed on me.
  • I am more than enough because Christ is within me.  Building the Church is His idea, not mine. This vision is from Him and He who is faithful to start it will also bring it to completion.
  • I am anointed, empowered, equipped and gifted to preach God’s Word. In my weakness, Christ’s strength is made perfect. It is not my words that change lives, it is the Power of God speaking His Word through me that will alter destinies and change eternities.
  • I will live my life to glorify God in everything I do today.  

Here’s a resource to help you develop your own Words to Live By.
My Good Intentions message will be posted by Tuesday if you missed it.

I think you should vote for…

America! Did you really think I was going to tell you who to vote for? No, but what I hope is that you will actually go and vote!

If we have learned anything from this election season, it’s that politics are emotional. People get angry at other people who don’t share their same political view. Some people picket candidates, and others have even threatened violence. It’s crazy how passionate people get about the issues that matter the most to them.

Anyone who knows me well knows that I have an opinion about everything – including the candidates. But I refrain from being too political because of how emotional people are when it comes to their parties. My greatest desire is to reach people with a message of hope, not in a political candidate, but in a God who can actually back up His promises.

So, I won’t tell you who to vote for, but I will give a little bit of advice. If you are like me, you have probably been quite discouraged about the two primary candidates for this election. It saddens me to think that our best options to lead this great country are Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. (Whether we like it or not, we have a 2 party political system until the process gets reformed!) A couple of weeks ago, I was convinced that I was going to write my own name in for President. Haha!

But then I decided to separate my emotional feelings from my civic duty. You might not like the options, but at least we have options! Too many men and women have given their lives so that we can be part of this free electoral process. I believe we should embrace this beautiful opportunity, even if we don’t love the candidates.

Can I encourage you to do the same? Remove your emotional feelings about the candidates and simply look at their stance on serious issues. Trust me, I understand how important character is for any leader. But these are our choices, and one of them will be our next President. I also separate moral issues from social issues. Here’s why, because as a Christ-follower, I can know God’s heart through God’s Word on moral issues. I want to embrace the same values as the God I follow.

Here’s what I did. I went to a bi-partisan website (isidewith.com) that asked me how I stand on certain issues. My answers revealed the candidate that most closely aligns with my political view, and then I cast a vote for that person. Yes, I already voted. (You can vote early in Ohio.)

So rather than getting into heated debates or worse on social media, how about simply find the candidate that most closely aligns with your view and exercise your civil right to vote?! By the way, your actual vote is what matters, not what you retweet on Twitter.

Then on November 8th, when the new president is elected into office, begin to pray for that person. Don’t freak out. Just remember that the next president won’t be the next King. Jesus has that position covered, and He can’t lose in any election.

Stop and read this! BTH Miracles…

We are just beginning our two year campaign for Build The House. Hundreds of people have taken a big step of faith to commit to giving to Build The House. In just one week’s time, we have already heard many miraculous stories! We are trusting that God is faithful to His promise of blessing us when we put His House first.

I invite you to take some time to read through just some of the stories we’ve already received.

 

My husband and I committed to increase our giving for Build The House. This week, out of complete “left field” we were contacted by some friends, and told that they wanted to GIVE us one of their extra cars for our son. We just picked it up, and we are blown away once again by God’s faithfulness. No way could we have gone out and bought something as nice as what they gave us. I wish I could yell it from the rooftops, “His promises are true people. You cannot out-give Him!”

– Andi

Continue reading “Stop and read this! BTH Miracles…”

185.

That’s the number of people who took their next step in following Jesus this past weekend in our church – 185. One hundred and eighty-five people got baptized. Can we pause for a moment to consider that God is building something great in our church? BTW- that’s over 10% of the number of people that attended a Crossroads.TV campus this past weekend! That’s insane. Now, imagine when our church is reaching 10,000 people on the weekend. I pray for the day when we get to witness over 1,000 people taking their next step in water baptism. It’s coming.

Watch the Recap:

Also, take some time to watch this past weekend’s message. Not only did I talk about water baptism, but I shared a message that speaks to our season of Build The House. It’s a message of vision that shares my heart for the kind of church that God is building here.

Don’t forget, next weekend is our Commitment Weekend. It is going to be very special. Do not miss it! Bring some tissues. Come ready to take a step of faith and to help us Build the House. If you cannot attend in person this weekend, you can still make your commitment online here.

See you this weekend!

Why I’m nervous about May 14/15th…

My wife and I will be celebrating 20 years of marriage on May 11th. (Yes, I got married when I was 16 if you are counting!) I am so very thankful that God gave my wife to me. She is truly my best friend, and the last 20 years of marriage have been the best years of my life.

There is a reason why I’m so excited and nervous to have my wife, Lorelei, take the stage with me on the weekend of May 14/15th. This will be the first time she will take the stage with a microphone during a message.

I’m excited because I believe Lorelei has much to give to our church. My wife is a pretty private person. She is truly my opposite in many respects. I’m the outgoing one. She’s the more introverted one, but don’t let her soft demeanor fool you, she is WISE beyond her years. Every time we discuss something, she always seems to have the “best” perspective. Let me assure you that this never helps my cause when we argue. For that reason, I can’t wait for the church to hear her perspective on Family Matters.

I’m also a little scared because I have had 13 years of sharing stories from the stage about her, and I’m not sure what she is going to say. There have been a few times along the way when she was not happy with how I portrayed her from the pulpit. Not knowing what might be said means that this could be a scary endeavor for me.

That weekend, we are going to answer YOUR questions regarding family matters. We will be talking marriage, dating, gender roles, spiritual dynamics and parenting. I promise that you will want to hear her answers way more than mine! Take a moment and submit your questions for that weekend. We may also allow people to tweet questions live each experience.

Submit your questions on social media using #AskTheMoores or via email to askthemoores@crossroads.tv. If you want your question to remain anonymous, just let us know in the email. We know that some people might have private questions, and we will be sensitive with them.

Don’t miss this special weekend!

I’m quitting social media!

Ok, not really, but right now I almost want to quit.

I’m sure we could all agree that social media has provided us many good things. It has helped us remain more connected to friends and family and has helped raise awareness around worthy causes. I have also seen some of the ways in which it is destroying us.

Social media has given a voice to everyone. In times of injustice, social media has given a voice to people who will stand up for the hurting. But unfortunately, social media platforms have also given a voice to the deepest depravity in our culture.

What sparked this blog post was a video that ESPN made in an attempt to stop online bullying. The video depicted men reading other men’s tweets aimed at women who work in sports journalism. However, what made the video real was watching random men read these comments face-to-face with the women that received them. Here’s a link to watch it.

To say I was floored by the lack of respect would be an understatement. Honestly, I was embarrassed and a bit ashamed of my gender. Aren’t we supposed to be the ones who are “man enough” to say something to someone’s face? There is NO way these comments would have ever been said if they were face-to-face with the person. Disgusted.

Yet, I know that this isn’t just a gender issue; this is a SIN issue. Women are just as guilty of online bullying as men are in this country. I have seen comments made from teen girls toward other girls that are disrespectful and demeaning. Sometimes people just follow someone so they can DM them hurtful comments, then they unfollow and block that person so they can’t respond. When this happens to people I know, I want so badly to say or do something the would probably cause me to lose my witness, at the very least.

Unfortunately, giving a voice to sin will lead to so much hate and hurt through outlets like social media. If things continue to trend this way, I predict that many people will leave social media platforms in the future. I really do see the good that can come through social media, but at some point, we might have to decide if it is worth all the baggage that comes with it.

To everyone reading this, I want to challenge you to first check your own heart. If you are someone who sends private messages to hurt others, or you spew your hateful comments behind a shrouded screen name, you need to repent and delete your social media account. Every person of every race, gender, or religion is created by God. They are special to Him! I would think twice about demeaning God’s children.

Here’s a link to a series I did earlier this year on social media.

How about a free shirt?

Everyone loves free, right? Sure enough, we are going to give out a free shirt to everyone who attends on the weekend of May 7/8th. But what this shirt represents and why we are giving it away is the real reason I wanted you to read this. We are in a series called Build the House, and it is one of the most important seasons in the life of our church. I wanted to bring you up to speed.

Last weekend, I shared a Principle and a Promise from the Bible about how God responds to our generosity. I believe generosity is often misunderstood and something many of us struggle with, myself included. If you missed this message, I strongly encourage you to take some time to watch it. You might find that God wants to position you through generosity to impact the world around you and to experience God’s blessing at the same time.

You can watch last week’s message here. If you have missed any messages in this series, you can find them all here.

We only have 2 weekends left of Build The House. I want to strongly encourage you to make every attempt to attend both of them. I believe they will be some of the greatest weekends in the life of our church. Here’s what’s coming up.

This coming weekend (Apr 30/May 1) is personally one of my favorite weekends of the year. It’s baptism weekend! We have more people registered to get dunked this weekend than we have ever seen in one baptism in the history of our church! That’s incredible. We had to order extra blank shirts just in case we run out of them. God is truly moving through our church, and we are seeing hundreds take their next step in baptism as evidence. Come out and support those who are taking their next step of faith.

The following weekend is our Commitment Weekend (May 7/8) for Build The House. I truly believe this one experience is going to move your heart and inspire your faith. Not only are we coming together to make our commitments for Build the House, but we are also going to experience what God is building here! Also, every person who attends our adult experience will get a free Build The House Vision shirt! Yep, that’s right, free! Only on this weekend however. If you miss it, you won’t get the shirt. Unless we sell any leftover shirts for a premium. 🙂

Seriously, you need to come both of these weekends, otherwise your life will suck.
🙂

The Blessing of 10

Two weeks ago I shared a messaged called “The Power of 10.” It’s about the vision that I shared with our church to reach 10,000 people and to give away at least 1,000,000 each year in outreach. If you missed that message, you should take a few moments to watch it here.

This past weekend, I shared how I believe we can fund this vision from within our church. I believe God has created a system for building His House on this Earth through tithes and offerings. This can often been a hard concept for many Christ-followers to embrace, especially here in America. We have more money than ever before, and yet we are less generous than ever before. Money has a way of holding on to us, so that we hold on to it. That’s why Jesus said in Matthew 6:24, “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.”

I believe that if we will focus on building God’s House, that He will focus on building ours. In other words, when we prioritize honoring God with our tithes and offerings, God will pour out blessings on our household. This is a promise found in Scripture that we have seen fulfilled hundreds of times within our church. In fact, I shared this story of how Anthony and Holly Smith experienced God’s blessing in their house when they committed to the tithe.

If you missed the message from this past weekend, I encourage you to take a moment to watch it here. I call it “The Blessing of 10.” I have personally experienced God’s blessing in my own life, and I believe much is attributed to our faithfulness to building God’s House through our tithes and offerings.

One of the best ways to train yourself to be disciplined in this area is through online giving. You can setup reoccurring giving to automatically deduct your tithe (10% of your gross income) on whatever day you get paid. I have done this and have never missed it! God has always blessed us with more than enough to meet our needs. I encourage you to TEST God in this (Malachi 3:10).

If you want to begin this faith journey with your finances, visit crossroads.tv/give to setup your giving online, or you can always text the dollar amount (e.g. $200) to 614-524-5373 and use our Smart Giving feature.

Are you Red-E?

We are two weeks into our Build The House series, and I couldn’t be more fired up! This past weekend I shared a ten year vision for our church. I truly believe that we can run after something big because we have a BIG God. God is passionate about His Church reaching people with the message of His Son! I truly believe that with God’s help, we will reach 10,000 people.

If you are part of Crossroads.TV, you need to know our vision for the next ten years. We are going to agressively focus our energy on expansion over these next ten years. We only have so much time on this earth to build something great and to leave behind something even better than we had! This is my personal vision, and I invite you to be part of it.

If you missed this past weekend’s message, I beg you to go watch it. HERE. The message is called “The Power of 10.” I hope you can get excited about a vision that will reach thousands more with the Gospel and that will set the pace to invest millions back into our city.

Don’t miss this coming weekend. I have more details to share with our church about how we are going to approach our next step in building in Canal Winchester. For more information about Build the House, visit crossroads.tv/buildthehouse.

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#BuildTheHouse