Wednesday, October 13, 2010


I recently attended the Catalyst leadership conference in Atlanta, GA and was challenged with a number of different thoughts and ideas that have begun to reshape the way I think about the world. There were a number of amazing and inspiring speakers who tried to push the minds and spirits of the 15,000 attendees. One speaker talked about an issue that really challenged the way I view my ministry and the opportunities that I have in life to make an impact. This speaker was Seth Godin, who is a world renowned author, blogger, and entrepreneur. He has written a dozen best selling books and has also spent time as the VP of Direct Marketing for a little company called “Yahoo!” Needless to say, the guy knows what he is talking about.

The thought that he really challenged me with was the difference between creating “art” and creating a “painting.” He stated that there is a big difference between a work of art and someone painting a picture. There is a city in China that accounts for one-third of the worlds production of paintings. There are painters who make 10 Mona Lisa paintings every day and turn around and sell them for $40-$60. He challenged us with the question of whether or not these paintings created in the masses are “art” or merely just a painting. The answer was fairly obvious. They are simply just paintings. So I started to think about that concept an how it plays into my life and my ministry. What is the difference between the two? And does that difference really make a difference? In the end you get the same beautiful painting that everyone recognizes. So what does it matter? But then it hit me. And it was the idea of taking a risk, putting something on the line, and chancing the fact that you might fail if you try to create “art” rather than just a painting. What I realized is that the difference between the two actually make all the difference.

Is anything really worth doing if there isn’t a chance that you will fail at doing it? If you think about it that is really what separates our lives from being more than a production line or a computer. We have the chance to make “art” not just a “painting”. We have the chance to make a difference and connect people when we make “art” with our lives. A piece of art is something new, something fresh, something that inspires people because it is ground breaking. But simply making a “painting” is just complying to the mold that this world and the people in it have already made. That mold is acceptable and it has a very minimal chance of failure. And even if you do fail, it isn’t that big of a deal because you didn’t create enough change for anyone to really care either way. There is no risk. But if we break the mold and dare to make something new, something that makes everyone question what else is possible in the world, we are on an entirely different level. It causes people to ask themselves, “If that person can create something like that, what else is possible?” This is the beauty and excitement of someone who pushes the envelope, someone that dares to succeed with the possibility of failure, who creates, inspires, and causes change.

God never once called us to be mediocre Christians. He called us to be world changers, disciple makers, and risk takers. Paul stated that we are "more than conquerors" because there is nothing in this world that can separate us from the love of God. Can you imagine what the world would look like if Christians took risks to create “art” with their lives rather than just regurgitating a painting of what they have seen before? It is nearly impossible to measure the amount of change and inspiration a piece of art causes on the world. When one person creates something, it inspires and motivates others to look at the other possibilities that are out there in the world. It challenges others to think, “I wonder what I can create? I wonder what kind of difference I can really make if I just took a risk?” We need people in this world who will bring change, even if it means that they will fail. Without the possibility of failure, change cannot happen, because nothing is being challenged. The thing about art is that it is a human act that changes something. It connects people together.

The conclusion that I want to draw out of this is that it is about time that we start creating art with our lives. God doesn’t need people to just stick the the status-quo and just be average. He needs people to step up and go after an idea or an opportunity with so much passion and focus that the thought of failure isn’t a deterrent, it is an inspiration to succeed. God needs those who care enough to take a risk with their lives and impact the world with ideas and passions that will never leave it the same as it was before. Let us ask God to give us the opportunity and direction to create “art” with our lives starting right now.

Thursday, September 2, 2010


The sounds. The smells. The sights. The emotions. The thrill of victory. The agony of defeat.

The cluttering of footsteps as fans are herded into the stadium. The scent of bratwursts and mouth-watering burgers penetrating the appetites of all in the vicinity. The overwhelming glimpse of one of college footballs greatest and most historic sanctuaries, towering over you as you stare up at its beauty. The energy of thousands of devoted fans whose hearts literally beat for the Big Red. The consuming sense of pride and honor when the team marches off the field victorious. And the heart ache when they collapse in defeat.

This is game day at Memorial Stadium.

There is almost something spiritual about game day in Lincoln, NE. Now as a pastor, I know I need to be careful when I say things like this. But to me there are very few places or events that I have been to where are I have felt such an overwhelming sense of purpose and devotion directed towards one epicenter. You can literally feel the sense of pride on your skin as you walk throughout the stadium. You feel like you are a part of something bigger, and yet something so small because you are all focused on one goal: victory.

I have been a devoted Husker fan all of my life. It has been a huge part of who I am. There are few things that get me as pumped up or as beat down as does watching a Nebraska game. Some may say that I have a problem, and maybe I do, because it brings into discussion the idea of worshipping something other than God. Now most of you know that I love Jesus more than anything, and that I truly try to live my life for him. But do I get as jacked or as devastated over the things he tries to convict my heart of? I really don’t think I do. I don’t believe that I am at that point in my faith and in my walk with Christ.

Some of you may suggest, “Well why don’t you stop watching Nebraska and focus on more on Jesus with your life?” But I do not think that is the problem. I don’t think there is anything wrong with being a fan of a sports team as long as you don’t make it the focal point of your reason for living. What I DO think it is about is where I am at with my relationship with God. See faith isn’t about an experience, or about a feeling. It is about a person. Faith is about the thing that you have faith in. In my case, it is Jesus (...and Husker football). I need to become more in tune and in love with Christ in my life so that I can be fully on board with the way the Spirit is trying to move me. How can I hear the Holy Spirit’s guidance if I am not really listening? (Especially since I am a guy! We can only focus on one thing at a time. Ladies, you might be okay in this area!)

The conclusion that I want to draw is this: Nebraska Cornhuskers are the greatest college football team in the history of sports....oh wait I forgot what the purpose of this blog was....awkward.....What I meant was that we all need to focus on the person we claim to have faith in. We need to fall in love with him every day. We need to focus on his teachings, on his example, and on his sacrifice. Why can’t the church have the same feel as Memorial Stadium does on game day? Well it can! But the people attending it need to be so amazed by the one being worship in the church that they feel that same kind unity among one another. What would our worship services look like if we did this?

I would love to experience the sensations that would come along with that.

The sounds. The smells. The sights. The emotions. The thrill of victory. And the understand that we never have to feel the agony of defeat.

Thursday, July 29, 2010


What makes us human? Is it the blood running through our veins? Maybe. Is it what we look like or how our bodies work so perfectly in a world of such chaos? Perhaps. Or at least that is a small part of what makes us human. But if you think of that question and give more than just a surface level answer then I think you can find a connection to God unlike anything else in this world. We are his creation. Every beat of our heart speaks to the rhythm of what his hands can create. Every sight that we see and process in our brains is an image of inspiration that magnifies the glory of an all powerful God. Every step that we take, every word that we say, and every breathe that we breath all give evidence of our God.

But is being a human being more than just sharing the same DNA as that of other humans? Or does it go so much deeper into our souls that the only thing that really makes us human is our dependency on God’s goodness? Hmmm. If we depend only on God, and God is good, then everything in this world should be a result of that perfect humanity that God created.

But wait, Drew. We don’t live in such a paradise? You mean things aren’t perfect? So if we have an omnipresent, omnipotent God that is perfect and holy in every way how can there possibly be evil in this world? If God is so good and glorious then why is there suffering? Why is there death? Why is there pain, grief, loneliness, guilt, and sorrow? Hmmm.

If all things are possible with God, then why didn’t he create a world without sin?

Well....He did. Remember Genesis chapters 1 & 2 where God created everything around us, including humanity in general, and he repeatedly said, “And it was good”? Well if you don’t, go back and look! God did create a perfect world where sin did not exist and where humanity lived in the harmonious state that it was intended to be lived in. But somewhere along the way we messed it up. God did not give up on humanity, humanity gave up on God by putting our dependence on something other than Him.

When you live in the world that we live in, it is so easy to lose hope and faith in God. The world we live in is very broken and distorted compared to the world that God always wanted us to live in. But remember this: Evil’s source is not of God’s power but of man’s freedom.

God gave us free will. It is a part of who we are and of our humanity. Without it we wouldn’t be able to love, have happiness, or worship. Without the freedom of free will, we wouldn’t be humans. We would be nothing more than robots that lived according to a biological code within ourselves.

Yes, God created everything, and yes there is evil in the world. But God did not create evil because evil is not a “thing”. A gun isn’t evil. A sword isn’t evil. They are nothing more than a construction and manipulation of various materials to perform a certain task. But what is evil is man throwing his humanity aside and abusing his freedom by performing a selfish and inhumane act. Nothing about that situation has anything to do with an all powerful and good God. That has everything to do with someone who has alienated themselves into another species by disobeying the order in which God created each and every one of us.

God created us as good and perfect creatures. When we stray away from that we stray away from our humanity. We stray away from what we were created to be. God never wanted us to feel pain, or suffering, or guilt. But because of our own selfishness (as a human race) this is now the world we live it.

The conclusion that I want to draw out of this is that we can no longer blame God for the evil things in this world. That is the most cowardly and foolish thing we can do. What we can do is take responsibility for our own short comings, seek out God’s forgiveness, and do whatever we possibly can to share that message with others.

I know this seems like a very depressing and I apologize. I am not saying that if we sin then God is going to do something bad to us. That is the opposite of the point that I am trying to make. I have just felt convicted lately to stand up for God against those who want take the easy way out and blame him, and even more so deny him, because of the evil things that we see in the world. God has some really big shoulders and can handle all of our doubts and questions that we have. In fact, I think that is when we grow most. But if you are doubting God because of the evil in this world, remember that evil isn’t something of God’s own heart or his goodness. And also remember that his grace covers all who seek it.

Feel free to add comments, questions, or insight.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


This is a hard blog to write because I know that I am not in a place in my faith where I am as obedient as I should be on this particular topic. It is also a hard blog to write because it will hit home in a personal way with every person that is going to read this, or at least it should.

We in America live in the wealthiest country in the world. I know this is not a shocker to any of you, but it is a fact none-the-less. We have more money, more cars, more clothes, more food, and to put it simply, more stuff than anywhere else on this planet. And we like it that way. Why is this? Because it makes us feel secure. It makes us feel in control. It makes us feel that we have the means to not only take care of ourselves and our families but to provide higher quality of living and hopefully happiness. I want to say something that might make a few of you mad, but that is ok! It is not acceptable in God’s eyes to be living this way.

"Then Jesus said to his disciples, 'I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.'" (Matthew 19:23-24)

I have read this passage a countless number of times in my life but never really considered how it played into my own life. Jesus is teaching us here that it is next to impossible to get into heaven when you are rich. Why did he say this? The Bible also teaches us that God’s grace is available to anyone who wishes to seek it, that includes those who are rich. Jesus wasn’t teaching the disciples that God’s grace doesn’t extend to those who are wealthy or that they aren’t loved as much as those who are not. What he is teaching here is that when you are rich, it is so easy to get wrapped up in yourself because you have security and comfort in your life. Money does provide these things in a number of different ways, and it is so easy to adjust your mindset to the idea that you do not need God in your life because you already have everything that you need. Why would you need to worship God when you are already have the security and control in your life that you desire and even need? The fact of the matter is that when you have these things in your life it often hard to see a need for God. You can become so wrapped up in yourself and in your own pleasure that you are completely going against the purpose that God created you, and this can lead you down a dark and very dangerous road. This is the message that Jesus was teaching his disciples.

When do you feel more compassion for those who are suffering and in poverty: When you are living in comfort and security, or when you are experiencing what it feels like to live that way? Maybe another lesson that Jesus was trying to teach is that when we are rich we lose the compassion and the heart that Jesus himself had for those who are poor and weak. You have to see that it is not about being wealthy. It is about being righteous in the eyes of God. It is about striving to have a heart like Jesus and to live your life like he would live it if he were standing in your shoes.

"Wealth is worthless in the day of wrath, but righteousness delivers from death."

(Proverbs 11:4)

Like I said this is a hard blog to write because I haven’t figure this out completely in my own walk with Christ. But I do realize this: I believe we live in the hardest place in the world to evangelize. It is a lot easier to share the hope of Christ to a country that is so desperate and hopeless than it is to a country full of people who do feel that they already have all of the hope and security that they need. We have become so corrupted and mesmerized by a sense of false wealth that it has almost completely blinded us from the true riches that God offers to those who follow and love Him.

The conclusion that I want to draw is that we need to rethink what it means to be wealthy, and what we should do with the wealth that we are blessed with. It is not a bad thing to have money. In fact, it can be a great thing for God’s kingdom if you learn to be generous like Jesus taught us to be. But if you do not learn how to do this in your life, Jesus’ teaching speaks for itself: It is almost impossible to get to heaven. But the great thing about my God is that through Him, nothing is impossible.

"Rich and poor have this in common: The LORD is the Maker of them all." (Proverbs 22:2)

"Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share. In this way they will lay up treasure for themselves as a firm foundation for the coming age, so that they may take hold of the life that is truly life." (1 Timothy 6:17-19)

"Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have." (Hebrews 13:5)

Wednesday, July 7, 2010


When I was a little kid, before this world cursed me with an abrupt sense of “reality”, I used to love going on adventures. Whether it was building a fort out of the trees in the back corner of my yard or it was pretending I was riding away from the bad guys on my bike, I loved making my life feel exciting. I loved pretending that I was part of something bigger than the circumstances that were actually surrounding me. But recently I have had a very depressing realization in my life:

Somewhere along the way in life I have lost this sense of adventure.

I don’t know what it is about our culture but once you reach a certain age you are supposed to put your imagination and dreams aside and become a “grown up”. I do understand that the older you get the more responsibilities you acquire, but what does that have to do with living a life with adventure and an imagination? Without these two elements in our lives, day to day life becomes BORING. And in my opinion, I don’t think that God ever intended our lives to be BORING! In fact, it is quite the opposite.

In my last blog I talked about purpose. I mainly focused on discovering the purpose in our own lives, but what would you say was the purpose of Jesus’ life? Well of course he came here to die for us on the cross so that we may have eternal life with him in heaven. And that is HUGE! But when thinking about this idea of adventure, could it be possible that another purpose of Jesus’ life here on earth was to teach us to be followers who live a life of adventure? I think so! Look at the numerous crazy things that he did throughout the gospel. He hung out with a prostitute, he ate dinner with sinners, he raised someone from the dead, he took on the high priests and challenged everything they were doing, he healed the sick and lame, etc. All the while he did this with his students near by, teaching them that there is power when you carry the name of God with you.

Then Jesus gave what we now call the great commission, which states:

Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. Then Jesus came to them and said, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age." (Matthew 28:16-20)

Jesus was sending his disciples on an adventure! An adventure that was going to take them all over the world spreading the news of Christ and baptizing people in his name. This concept is commonplace today but this was a huge and dangerous task for these men to take on. A task that in the end took many of their lives in very violent and cruel ways. But I can guarantee that if we could ask the disciples today if they would do it again that they would say the adventure was worth it.

The conclusion I want to draw out of this is that we need to live our lives like it is an adventure. And a forewarning that goes along with that is it wont always be safe. What kind of adventure doesn’t include a little danger? But God never calls us to be safe in our faith. He calls us to be bold and to trust in Him to lead us to do what He knows is best. But are we brave enough to follow? I just pray that we approach our walks with a more childlike sense of adventure and to break away from what this world tells us it means to be a grown up.

“Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” (Hebrews 4:16)

Monday, June 28, 2010


Purpose. We all have it. In fact just about anything you can think about has it in some form or another. A football team’s purpose is to win games. An artist’s purpose is to create something out of what seems to be nothing. A musician’s purpose is to create beautiful and inspiring music. I can sit here all day and list just about anything or anyone and tell you what the purpose is of their existence. In my studies lately, I have been contemplating what this concept means and how it reflects in my life.

If I was to take my own life and write it down into a story, chapter by chapter, and hand it to someone and ask them to read it, what would they think my life was all about? Would they find my life inspiring? Full of adventure? Or would they find the purpose of my life to be full of selfish ambitions, missed opportunities, and constant failures and letdowns? Through the many plot changes, climaxes, and character balances that would be found in the pages of my life would the reader see a man who is living his life fully devoted to God? As much as I would like to answer this last question in the affirmative, I do not believe that I could while maintaining my integrity. Sure some of the chapters in that book would show a man living for God, a man who finds his purpose in what Christ did for us on the cross, but not all of them. And in my opinion, if there is any chapter in my life that is not centered around Christ’s death and resurrection than I am wasting my time and finding my purpose outside of God’s love.

In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will, in order that we, who were the first to hope in Christ, might be for the praise of his glory. And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God's possession—to the praise of his glory. (Ephesians 1:11-14)

We have a purpose in this world, and that is to praise the glory of God with our lives.

This seems like such a foreign concept in our culture too. We live in a culture where we are taught from birth that everything in out lives is about our own story. We are supposed to do everything by answering for ourselves the question, “Is this good for me?” If the answer to this question ends up being no than our culture teaches us to just leave it behind and find something better for ourselves. But this is NOT what God calls us to do.

As I was considering this idea of purpose in my life I realized that it isn’t just about my own story. It is so much bigger than that because my story is just a sub-story to a meta-narrative which is the story of everything around us. A story that includes life, brokenness, retribution, deceit, murder, death, joy, a promise, danger, an adventure, and most importantly a hero, that is Jesus Christ our Lord. This is God’s story, and I feel lucky to be a part of it.

The conclusion that I want to draw out of this is that we are all made for a purpose. God did not mass produce us, he hand crafted each and every one of us. We were created intentionally and therefore we have purpose in our lives. It doesn’t matter what story you have lived in the past, because God doesn’t care about that. What he does care about is how you will live your life right now, tomorrow, and in the many days to come. It is never too late to rewrite your story. Just remember that when you do, write it for the one who gave you the pen in paper in the first place.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Prince of Peace.

Hello everyone! This is my first blog!! I have never blogged before but a number of people told me that I needed to start one so I figured, "Why not?" I really enjoy writing and putting my thoughts together so I think I will enjoy doing this. I'm jumping on the bloggers bandwagon!! So without further ado, welcome to "Drewing Conclusions". This will more than likely be a pretty random blog as far what I will be talking about. At times I might be sharing what I am studying at that moment in my life. I might also give a review on a book I am reading, a movie I am watching, or whatever else is inspiring me. I might also give updates on things that are going on in my life and in my ministry. So keep on your toes!! You never know what is going to come at you!! I hope you enjoy.

For my first blog I really wanted to share a little bit from what I am studying in the Bible. I'm really into finding out more about who God is and what His character is like, so this is what I have been digging into lately!

We have a God that is so amazing, so unbelievably perfect in every way, so indescribable that any language that we have developed has humans cannot captivate who he is with a single word or even a few words. In fact there are hundreds of references throughout the Bible that try to describe God and His character. I believe the better that we can understand God and who He is the better we can understand who we are as His followers.

While studying these names of God one stuck out to me above all other names. I think this is because that the meaning behind this title that has been given to God is so life changing, so unbelievably powerful that if we can just wrap our minds about it our lives will literally never be the same. This title is found in Isaiah 9:6 which reads:

“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”

Prince of Peace. What comes to mind when you hear that as a title of God? When I think of the word “peace” I think of things such as the abolition of war and violence, unity among all of the churches, and a comfort knowing that things are going to be alright. While these all deal with peace, this title of God is teaching us something different about our creator, and like I said before it is life changing! The Hebrew word translated "peace" is shalom, which also means "completeness," "soundness," "welfare," "tranquility," "contentment," and "friendship." Read over that list one more time. Completeness. Soundness. Welfare. Tranquility. Soundness. Our God is the Prince of all of these things. He has complete power over all of these areas in our lives if we only look to him for comfort through our struggles.

You might be asking yourselves right now, “Ok Drew, thats sounds great and all, but how is this life changing like you made it sound before.” Well please do not be disappointed just yet, because I am not done making my point!

When we have this kind of peace in our lives, we can look into the eyes of any kind of adversity that we are facing and be completely content with the assurance that none of it matters because we are protected by the love of God. We can be going through the darkest parts of our lives, whether it is persecution, family issues, a death of a close friend, the loss of a job, or whatever else you want to fill in this blank with and we can still come out smiling because we know that we have peace in God. And when we have peace in God it doesn’t matter what is going on in our lives because we do not have to fear anything but God himself. We do not have to worry. We do not have to cower away. We do not have to give up because our God gives us peace over all of this. We can be completely content through any temptation, any hardship, or anything else because our God is more powerful than any of that. When we accept this we can finally realize that our God is not only the God of the mountain top but he is also the God of the valley! And let me tell you right now that there is nothing more powerful than that!

Once you accept this truth of who God is you can look at any temptation that Satan puts in front of you and know that he has no hold over you in any way, shape, or form because our God is more powerful than any of that and that we can find a refuge and peace in him. When we find ourselves in financial problems, we can find peace in God because he is God over all things and we know that we are rich in Him, even if our bank account makes us feel hopeless and poor. When someone close to us dies, we can be comforted because we know that we are living for a God who has promised us eternal life if we have excepted him into our lives.

Once we can accept the fact that we can find joy in any trouble that we will face in this world we can take away a huge foothold that Satan has on people in our culture. We are not slaves to anything in this world. As it teaches us in the book of Romans, we are now slaves to righteousness. We are sons and daughters of a God of peace that is good and righteous and is chained down by no one or no thing.

  • For the mountains may be removed and the hills may shake, But My lovingkindness will not be removed from you, And My covenant of peace will not be shaken," Says the LORD who has compassion on you. (Isaiah 54:10)
  • "And I will make a covenant of peace with them; it will be an everlasting covenant with them. And I will place them and multiply them, and will set My sanctuary in their midst forever. (Ezekiel 37:26)
I hope you enjoyed my first blog. If you have any comments or questions on what I talked about please feel free to leave them on here. I am looking forward to blogging with you in the future! God Bless!