I had the most beautiful picture of family this week.

My dad had open-heart surgery on Tuesday. But, after a successful surgery, Dad began having complications. His blood pressure and blood oxygen levels were dropping. The nurse called his surgeon and was told to prep Dad for surgery again.

We didn't totally know what was going on, just that it wasn't good. And so we began to make calls. Immediately, people started praying. And before we knew it, people started showing up.

At one point during Dad's second surgery, more than 35 people filled the waiting room. We cried and prayed and laughed to lessen the tension. And then we celebrated the good news from the surgeon and threatened to give him a "group hug."

What struck me throughout the whole process was how beautiful the Body of Christ can be. Sure, we have our bumps and bruises, but for the most part, we're beautiful. We support each other. We love each other. We show up when asked.....and when we're needed, even if not asked.

It makes Paul's admonition in 2 Cor. 1:4 come to life. We comfort those in trouble by the comfort we've received ourselves.

I was comforted by so many on Tuesday. I was loved by family - by birth and by faith. And it made me smile.

Immersion DEVOTION: 05.30.07

QUOTE OF THE WEEK: “Way beyond religion…” Jason Upton, singer/songwriter.

I think we’re coming to a place in human history where, “that’s the way we’ve always done it” isn’t going to quite cut it any longer.

If you pay attention to the statistics, people (specifically young adults) aren’t coming to church anymore. They cite boredom and irrelevancy to their everyday lives as reasons for not coming. “The way we’ve always done it” is not working any longer, and I could not be more pleased. You see, we are in a time when God is doing something fresh and new – something that looks very different from “the way things have always been done.” God will no longer allow political or denominational lines to form a box around his beauty and majesty. Those lines, that box – the “box” of religion – is beginning to be dismantled by the gracious hand of God.

What are we, as Immersion, going to do with that? God is such that he does not reside only in a temple “built by human hands.” What are we going to do with this knowledge? How are we going to respond to a God who “desires mercy, not sacrifice?” Meaning – God desires a “repentant and contrite heart” over you coming to church on Thursdays or Sundays. What are we going to do when the walls of religion come tumbling down in the church of America? Will we be ready…?

Prayer for the week: Father of Lights, the Fragrant One, break us out of the boxes that we spend so much of our time in. The boxes of religion, of “the way things have always been done,” these boxes of fear and apathy, of doing things by rote and uncreatively. You are the one who is constant but always changing. Teach us to be constant in our devotion and love to you but open to change everywhere else. In Yeshua’s Name, Amen.

The tank is not included...

So my charcoal grill finally bit the dust after 5 years of faithful service... I am a diehard charcoal guy but my wife convinced me to get into the now and go acquire a gas grill. We were having a HUGE Mother's day gathering and the grillmaster needed an appropriate weapon at his disposal. And so the quest began...

I started with the Sunday ads in an attempt to find the cheapest/best option out there. I poured over every major retailer and found the one I wanted... I ventured out at 10:00am only to experience my first roadblock- the store did not open until 11:00am. So after twiddling my thumbs and getting a cup of coffee, young Noah Brandt and I finally stood before the future Brandt family grilling machine. The price was right and we called over the friendly neighborhood grill expert to complete the sale. This grill also came with the most beautiful words my eyes had ever seen while grill shopping, "free assembly included!" However, my next roadblock came with my next obvious question... "so where is the tank?" After tacking an additional $50 onto the sticker price, the entire package, tank and all made it safely home to my deck... Ah the fine print we so often miss...

Do you ever wonder what life would be like if we had the whole picture going into things? Have you ever thought about how much simpler it would be in our feeble attempt to understand God if we knew everything about Him? Adam and Eve tried that approach... Moses asked to see God's face only to catch a glimpse of his backside which was so intense, Moses glowed all the way down the mountain... Job found out the hard way that God is and he wasn't... and on and on in scripture. The bigness of God, even the mystery of God is what drew His people to Him and can draw us yet today! You can read the same passage of scripture many times and have God speak to you in many different ways! It is impossible to know God fully this side of heaven. And yet we are fully known by Him! I find peace in that... but I am a simple guy that doesn't always concern himself with the fine print...





Some of you have been asking about the music we were playing last night during the service. For your listening pleasure, here is a sampling of the songs that were played, available for purchase through iTunes. Enjoy...

Busy "Be"

This week at Immersion we'll be hosting, "Quiet Night." What is "quiet night," you might ask? It's a night dedicated to being still. To slowing down. To resting. To listening. To "being."

Is it hard for you to "just be"? It can be for me. I like to be busy. I like to have things on the calendar. I'm very social and being around people fills me up. I like to be "busy as a bee."

But, when does busyness becomes a distraction? When does it become avoidance?

A few years ago, my husband went on a 40-day silence fast. That's right....he didn't talk for 40 days. Not for work. Not with friends. Not even to order a hamburger at the drive-thru.

Armed with a small notepad for emergencies, he spent 40 days in silence. His goal was to become more still. He goal was to learn how to be a better listener. And it worked.

But, I tell you, he wasn't the only one learning the lessons. After the first 48 hours, I thought I'd go insane. I was alone with my thoughts and it wasn't a pretty picture. All that I could avoid by keeping busy or turning up the volume, screamed at me through the silence.

Quiet and stillness are refreshment for our spirits. They allow God's voice to breakthrough the busyness and volume of life. He gets our ears. He gets our attention. He gets our hearts.

Will you join us on Thursday as we quiet down and listen. As we rest. As we meet Him in the still, small whisper?

See you there.

- Christine

PS: For all of you with big dreams for your life, check out www.bigdreamgathering.com It's happening next week and it's sure to change your life.