Tag Archives: blogs

Catalyst :: Backstage 2010

I get the chance to be a co-host of catalystbackstage.com this week in Atlanta. I’m joining up with John Acuff, Shauna Niequist and Carlos Whittaker to bring you live interviews with the Speakers and all kinds of behind the scenes stuff at Catalyst this week. This is a little real time conference resource for all of your that couldn’t make it. There’s also rumor that they’ll be streaming a couple of the main sessions. Tune in starting Wednesday starting at 12pm (EST) as we get started and follow along with us through the end of Friday.

Anybody actually going to be at Catalyst this week?

Ryan Axtell :: This Valley :: CD Release

I just wanted to take a second to remind you how blessed I am to have Ryan & Danielle Axtell as friends of mine. I’ve been so honored to have been able to walk alongside Ryan during these past months as God has given and taken away with the loss of their first child. Ryan has never ceased to amaze me with his capacity to follow Jesus into ‘This Valley’. He has been relentless to dig in to find out how God could use this tragedy for His glory. Ryan and Danielle have traversed this trial with honor, integrity, humility, authenticity and yet anchored in the hope we have in Jesus. I only hope I can do my ‘valley’ with that level of respect and honor!

That being said, I could think of no greater thing than for all of us to come out Thursday night, April 15th 2010, to support Ryan and Danielle with the release of ‘This Valley’ his brand new CD. Out of ‘This Valley’ birthed songs rooted in the word and telling the God story in their lives. Ryan has worked vigorously on this project and the album sounds AWESOME!! The release is tomorrow night at 7pm in the auditorium at Cornerstone Chandler. Nyke our Camber Pastor will be interviewing Ryan about the still birth of their first child and all that has come with this hard season for he and Danielle. It will be a powerful time to share in music, story and community. Bring your family and friends to come enjoy this night!

If you can’t make it out to Arizona for the show, but, want to purchase his new Album CLICK HERE!!

My amazing Promise designed all the artwork for Ryan. I think she did a KILLER job and, yes, I am totally biased! 🙂

Music Flashback: Plankeye

So back in the day I used to go to a lot of ‘shows’. Where I grew up in Southern California in the 90’s it was a mecca for a lot of REALLY good music. One of my all time favorite bands in Jr. High/High School was a band on Tooth and Nail (BEC) called Plankeye. They had a fresh poppy, melodic sound and they were incredibly fun to watch live. I’ve probably seen these guys like 20 times in my life. HA. Anyways, I woke up this morning remembering the good old days and much to my surprise a lot of the peeps that follow me on Twitter liked Plankeye too.

So…for those of you that don’t have a clue…well…here are few videos I found of Plankeye. You can see where some of my musical influences came from back in the day. Who were some of your favorite 90’s bands?!

BC was one of the songs I really liked by these guys. There album Commonwealth was my favorite record they made.

My brother and I used to jam ‘Open House’ in the garage when we were kids. HAHA. So rad. Actually, so RADICOOL!!!

‘Goodbye’ was the closing credit song on one of The Real World seasons at the turn of the Millennium.
Good times…RIGHT?!?! Plankeye needs to do an original band flashback tour!!

Photogs (WPPI), Las Vegas, ShowIt, Friends & More…

I had the privilege of tagging along with my amazing wife to a Professional Photographers convention in Las Vegas. Promise is always has always been so good to tag along to my many outings in the church world and it was a blast to swim in her world for the week.

I was moved in so many ways this week. I was moved to see how a general market business could be so full of ministry potential. I was moved by the passion and heart of these ambitious, hard-working, sometimes lonely, talented and artistic group of Professional Photographers. Seriously, there are some amazing people in this industry.

The organization WPPI puts the convention on and it is primarily for wedding and portrait photographers. Total, I think I heard there were about 14,000 of them hanging around in Las Vegas over the convention days. Pretty wild. It’s a great chance to connect with other photographers, hear from some influential voices in the industry, talk to product vendors on the trade show floor and get inspired about photography.

Honestly, the convention was just okay. I wasn’t the hugest fan of how the thing was run…the whole thing was kind of hectic and unclear for new people. The part I loved the most was connecting with all the people there. We met SOOOO many great new people and got to hang with some of our good photog friends too.

We spent quite a bit of time with the crew from ShowIt. Promise uses their web software for her website. They’re team was their at the convention and getting good time with this group was one of the highlights of the week. They hosted some focus groups with some of their really great photographers and I got to sit in a couple of them. I was really inspired by the heart of a lot of the photographers that spoke in these focus groups. ShowIt set things up very relationally and less sales pitchy. It was a the kind of vibe I would want if I were in this industry.

So many friends and to much good to say about them all.

A few people from our week in Las Vegas that you should check out too:

David Jay is the visionary, team builder and the heart of ShowIt. He’s got a prolific mind and is always thinking quite a few steps in front of the average Joe. Promise and I got to spend some significant time with DJ (as they call him), his girlfriend Christianne and their team. This guy follows Jesus and lives like him. If I can love and treat people with half the heart of DJ I’ll be in good shape. So grateful for his encouragement to me and Promise in this season!

Jamie is 19 years old and one of the most talented, articulate, professional, fun, faith-filled and wise beyond her years people I’ve met in a long time. She’s a rising voice in the industry and I’m glad to now call her a friend.

Troy Grover is my brother-in-law and awesome friend. He has been a HUGE part of connecting Promise and I in this industry. Troy is one of those guys that has the ability to be great at whatever he touche. Troy is an amazing photographer and handles his business with such tact and professionalism. I’ve got lots to learn from Troy. Good thing he’s in the family! I think he got the short straw on this deal. 🙂


Steve and Stephanie have become great friends in recent months. They live here in the Phoenix area and are just such a good hang for us. These are easy, no drama-for-yo-mama kind of friends. They run a great Photography business too and we have plenty to learn from them!


Melissa Jill is a wise soul and a woman that has figured out the way to tether her art for justice too. She’s a solid photographer and has a quiet wisdom about her. It was an honor to get to hang with her a bit this week.


Zach and Jody Gray are awesome Nashville photographers. These two gave me quite a glimpse at the potential of what Wedding Photographers could do to change things like divorce rate, etc… It’s amazing to think of the ministry potential in a general market business. I love the drive and tenacity that the Grays have and I’m looking forward to the chance to hang with them again in the future!

Like I said, these are just a few of the faces of some of the amazing people we spent time with this past week. Anyways, go check these guys out and be inspired through their amazing images. There is so much to be learned in life by looking at wedding and portrait photography. These cats are paving the way for good days ahead too!

Overall, our experience at WPPI was really great. We’re thankful that we had the opportunity to be a part of it. We’re hoping to go back next year too!


Neue Magazine :: My Article…

I think this would be my first ‘note-worthy’ publication and I’m excited to tell you about it. I was recently asked to write a piece for Neue Resources which is a branch of Relevant Magazine. I was asked to write about why we sing the songs we sing and the importance of such things. Anyways, I’d love for you to read it and hopefully you’ll catch a small glimpse into my small brain on what I think is important as it relates to the songs we sing.

This is a read for everyone, but especially Worship Leaders.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on what you read too! Hopefully you’ll enjoy! CLICK HERE TO READ THE ARTICLE (if it’s to small to read click the page and it will ZOOM in for ya).

Worship: Why We Sing

We are in a new series here at Cornerstone called 3-2-B which, in essence, is a series that’s sort of pointing our church to simple ways to walk closer to Jesus. The ‘3 to be strong’ are Worship, Grow and Serve. We’re talking about this idea and asking the question, ‘what IF every person in our church took a step forward in this season in each of those areas? What could happen? How much more like Christ could we become if we actually matured in our faith? How much could our maturity influence Kingdom capacity?’

This past weekend we talked to the concept of worship. We talked about this idea that worship is the bowing down of our lives in the obedient effort to give God His rightful place in our lives. His rightful place is first and above everything else. Worship is the broad canvas of our lives and there is nothing in our lives that get excluded. Everything is spiritual and everyone has the ability to worship.

As the Worship Leader at a local church I have to be honest to say that there is nothing more frustrating than how we have compartmentalized the concept of Worship to music. Music is but a fiber of what worship really should be in our lives. True worship is the bowing down of our lives in the every decision of our every day.

If you’re like a lot of people though, you may have had a simple yet unanswered question that may be the following: ‘WHY DO WE SING?’ It seems like singing is a foundational element of what we do in our local churches. I think I’ve got a guy that may be able to give you some insights on this question.

I’ve got an AMAZING friend, mentor and theologian in my life that I want you all to get to know. His name is Dr. John Hubley. The guy is an absolute lover of life, people and the Word of God. He has been responsible for taking me to all new places as it relates to my ‘Biblical Interpretation of Worship’. I’ve done everything I can to get this guy on film to capture his wisdom and legacy.

I recently sat down with John to ask him this burning question, ‘WHY DO WE SING?’.

Where there any new concepts or ideas that you learned about WHY WE SING that came out through this video? Do you like to express your worship in song? Do you dislike expressing your worship in song? What does singing mean to you in light of hearing that singing is close to the heart of God?

Michael Jackson – The Death of A Legend

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I’m a pretty big Michael Jackson fan. The reports today of his cardiac arrest and his death are heartbreaking. He’s an entertainer like no other and has a songwriting ability that only a few have and a voice like no one in history. I know some people that have worked with him and they say he was an unbelievable musician and quite a guy.

Whether you think he’s weird or great, he was an epic talent and that’s undeniable. Truly this historic day is a sad one for those of us that appreciate great artistry!

Are you a fan? What is it about M.J. that you really dig? Seriously, how big of a bummer would it be to have lost the King of Pop today?