Friday, July 31, 2009

Finally Here!

On Wednesday of this week my diploma from Asbury Theological Seminary finally arrived. It was a big moment for me because there was always a chance that something wasn't quite finished; that a problem would arise; that the school would shut down (I don't know, I'm just a pessimist about things like this).

Now I'm bona fide! I've got the diploma. If Asbury ever calls me and says, "There's a problem. You aren't really finished." I'll just pretend my iPhone dropped the call (something so plausible and common that I may not even have to pretend).

Thursday, July 30, 2009


I've been a bad blogger, but some weeks are just busy (with stuff that isnt' blog-worthy).

But here are a couple of the fun things that happened last week. Our Four By Four group went to a Johnson City Cardinal game and I was able to hunt down the mascot for a picture.I also turned 42 last week, but I don't have pictures of anything. I ate more pies and cakes and tiramasu than a 42-year-old should eat. Ooohhh the suffering!

This weekend my brother and his family came to town. We had a great time with them, especially at Lake Watauga where the weather was perfect. Here are his four children checking out the Butler Bridge as we approach.
Special thanks to Captain Blowers for providing the boat!
That's all I have time for today. I hope tomorrow to put up a picture of something that arrived at my house yesterday. I was more moved by its arrival then I expected!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Sneak Peak

I got to see the newest Grandview baby. Here is Jack's big sister, Olivia, holding her new brother and wearing her new big-sister-dress. Mom and Dad both look great. Welcome, Jack!

Monday, July 20, 2009

The Return

Here's the trip to Spartanburg/Greeneville, South Carolina to retrieve Meghan. We were all smiles on the way down there (although, I should probably be paying more attention to the road).
Oh, did you think I drove the family van to the airport? No. No. No.
(okay ... the limo was just there, but we can pretend)

Sisters purchased similar scarfs while apart. Slaves to fashion!

That's more like it!

Katy's luggage didn't arrive yet, but we're all happy anyway. It is great to have everyone home.
Dad's artful posing of the Wymer women.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Tomorrow's Offering

I haven't put much up about my sermons lately. We're in the midst of "The Big Picture" series. Tomorrow I will focus on "Creation" as the beginning of the story that defines us. What we believe about creation matters (in particular, who, how and why).

As I worked on the sermon this week I felt the need for an artist's input. On Friday morning I sat down with our own Tom Root and asked him to riff on creation and the artist's response. It was time well spent (any time chatting with Tom is well spent). The fruit of the discussion informs tomorrow's sermon.

Tom wasn't pleased with me when I took this picture, but he'll get over it.
If you want to read the pastoral prayer for the 11am sanctuary service, you can follow the link to Bob Hall's prayer blog. He has it finished and ready:

Bob's Prayer Blog

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Long Time No See--NACC

Sorry for my blog-absence. Sometimes I just don't feel like it. But here are some pictures from the North American Christian Convention in Louisville. The NACC is a yearly event that helps Christian Churches stay (get?) connected to one another.

The NACC gets a fair amount of bad press for its ... its ... convention-ness (I think that's the right word). I quit being hyper-critical of it a few years back when I realized that I enjoyed catching up with folks I hadn't seen in a while and that EVERY thing didn't have to be to my liking.

The main sessions look like this:

The music is pretty loud and drifts from worship into concert. That bugs me as much as anything else. When the lead singer starts holding out notes and bouncing them in R&B fashion, I kind of want to tell him to get a day-job. Be a "performer" or worship leader; you can't be both at the same time. Okay ... enough of the whiney complaining. I don't want to lead that kind of blog.

Max Lucado preached the final session on Friday morning and then our own Ben Cachiaras (senior minister at Mountain Christian and former Grandview minister) received the gavel as next year's president of the NACC. The big event will be in Indy. Check it out if you can.

In the below picture you see a street preacher preaching the gospel to Christians walking from the convention to lunch. I wanted to tell him that he was preaching to the choir ... then I realized that's what some of the main convention speakers were doing, too.

This is our view from our hotel room.Here you see Rob Castens and Ethan Magness (Ethan is our former youth minister) as they explain the Milligan College/Mountain Christian partnership for internships. Very well done. Ethan is doing good work up there (between Mountain Christian Church in Joppa, and First Christian Church in Johnson City, it's amazing we have any staff left at Grandview).

The Kentucky Visitors' Center was almost in the lobby of our hotel. I couldn't help but get a picture with the Colonel.
This interesting photo is one I took while Dr. Hull was introducing me as the speaker at the Emmanuel breakfast. I like how it came out!
This is a picture I took as the breakfast was starting. Everyone was digging into their "support Emmanuel" breakfast.

My talk went fine. I enjoyed being asked to do it.

Here is our own Bill Greer, preparing to lead his workshop. I paid a guy in the audience $10 to ask, "Why do you drive an SUV?" incessantly until the session was over. It was the best $10 I ever spent!

Monday, July 06, 2009

Meghico Update

The youth group is, of course, back in the good ol' U.S. of A. I don't need to update you on them. But Meghan and Katy remain in Mexico, so I thought I'd include a few pictures of her today. Tomorrow I will review the NACC.

Here is the youth group with storm clouds gathering. Here is Meghan during her visit to the monastery.
I like this picture from the Dallas Airport.

She looks like she's having a rich time.

Cindy and I talked to her last night. She sounds good. Host Erin is now on bed rest as she awaits the birth of the McBaby. I think this experience has been an important one in her formation. We're proud of her and we're glad Katy is there with her. They make a good team.