Monday, February 9, 2009 • 8:24 am
Quest has had the privilege of helping facilitate a new churchplant in the Kent, Washington area. But it’s likely that these folks have never even heard of the word ‘churchplant’ and the numerous technical words that pastors like myself like to throw around. And to be honest, these folks probably don’t care.
But they do care about one another, family, community, justice, their children, their people, and of course, they care about their faith in Christ.
Over a year ago, a group of friends including Rich and Teresa from Quest helped start a church community for refugees from Burma including the Karen and Chin people. The group has since grown to over 100 people the last time I heard including tons of young children. I’ve had the privilege of visiting and preaching there and I’ve been immensely encouraged by this community – even though I know there are numerous hardships and struggles. I was even greeted by a man who recognized me from my visit to Burma several years ago. I’m glad to report that this community has moved to another location that better accomodates their growing community. The last time I visited them, the kids were meeting in the janitor’s room.
This isn’t an official Quest plant but we are supporting them through our Quest Churchplanting Foundation. Years ago, Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: churchplanting, ministry, quest church, seattle
Friday, January 16, 2009 • 1:44 am
I hope it was ok for me to be honest about some of the suckiness I’ve been feeling recently. Sometimes, I’ll read and hear what other pastors are writing or saying and I sometimes have doubts. Everything they say, do, or experience about their lives or their ministry seems to be perfect, amazing, and incredible…like totally…like 24/7…every day. That’s cool if it’s true.
I’m not like that. I have my share of stuff, frustrations, and pain. Of course, I don’t use the blogosphere to share alot of that stuff because it may hurt people but I don’t mind sharing – as honestly as I can – that sometimes, things suck. Simply, I’m okay with not always being okay.
The things I shared on my last post – When It Rains, It Pours – are stuff that sucked that I could share. The stuff I couldn’t share were the real sucky stuff. I don’t want to paint or portray that everything is perfect, beautiful, and rosy all the time. Because it’s not.
So, what does that mean for Quest? Nothing…except to say Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: church, quest church, seattle
Friday, January 9, 2009 • 2:01 am
No, this isn’t a post about President Bush although can read my latest one here about W.
About 8 years ago, Minhee and I sent an email to folks about our desire to plant a church in the city of Seattle called Quest. It was pretty scary not knowing who was going to show up – if anyone. But seven people showed including two people that are still with us right now. Over the next several months, about 30 people joined us of which about 5 people are still us with us.
Lots of changes. People coming in and out. Lots of pain. Lots of growth. Lots of joy. Lots of memories. And lots of “What in the world am I doing?” There’s been lots of ups and downs and but through it all, Minhee and I have been privileged to have a handful of people journey with us for the majority of our journey.
In particular, I’m thankful for George and Jin – two brothers amongst the seven folks Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: quest church, seattle
Wednesday, January 7, 2009 • 1:24 am
[photos by HageCreative]
Yesterday was a really sucky day. A tough day for some reasons I won’t share here but I can share one thing. I woke up to a phone call very early morning that our non-profit Q Cafe was broken into at some point in the middle of the night. Whoever – broke in, made a little mess, broke into several office rooms, snagged a laptop, and took the cash from the cafe and live music venue. We’ll get over the loss and damage but it just sucks bigtime to have someone rob your place.
But in the scope of the bigger world, it’s nothing. Even before the news of the break-in, I’ve been recently overwhelmed by heavy news: Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: bible, christianity, church, quest church, seattle
Sunday, December 21, 2008 • 1:14 pm
As you know, Quest Church canceled our church services in light of the current snow storm [aka Snowpocalypse]. This is the first time in the 17 years of ministry that I’ve cancelled a Sunday gathering so this is awkward but the other elders and pastors believed this was the wisest decision for all involved.
But it’s cool. The “church” doesn’t cease to be the church if it’s not meeting in a building. I hope that numerous Questers are choosing to intentionally worship at home. In that effort, the pastors have put together a simple worship flow to guide you as you see fit. Here’s the worship guide which includes prayer, Scripture reading, communion liturgy, etc.
Also, I recorded my sermon Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: church, quest church, seattle, seattle snowstorm, snowpocalypse
Saturday, December 20, 2008 • 7:10 pm
Due to Seattle’s version of Snowpocalypse, Quest Church is cancelling all three services for Sunday, December 21. With safety in mind for the 500+ people that drive, cycle, and walk their way to church, the elders and I prayerfully made this decision. I have to share that I feel a little strange since this is the first cancellation in the history of Quest but this is also a great opportunity.
This shouldn’t b excuse for us to play pagan and do nothing except watch football games, consume christmas cake and egg nog, and shovel snow. We want to invite you to carve out some quality time tomorrow to ”Worship @ Home.” While it’s an amazing experience to gather with fellow worshippers from the Quest family on Sundays, you don’t need a worship team, program, or minister to worship the Triune God.
Tomorrow, I want to encourage you Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: church, quest church, seattle
Thursday, December 18, 2008 • 2:05 pm
I love Seattle. Many things to love: coffee, music, quasi-diversity if you look hard enough, the topography, ocean, the rain, teriyaki restaurants to rival Starbucks stores, etc. But it doesn’t snow very often and so when it does, people go crazy. Schools were delayed two hours earlier this week because of possible icy conditions. Yesterday, school was shut down because of a pending snowstorm – which never came. But alas, we get our “snowstorm” today that folks are jokingly calling the Seattle Snowpocalypse.
Seriously, it’s not that big of a deal but when you’re not use to it, local news stations cover it for hours as if it’s the end of the world. But just case it is the end of Seattle as we know it, here’s my farewell address to everyone. God bless you. I hope to see you at the other side. Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: seattle, travel, seattle snowstorm, snowpocalypse
Monday, December 15, 2008 • 1:01 am
This is a must read for any person in leadership but I share this especially for pastors and church leaders for your consideration as you consider the uncharted journey ahead. When people talk about the vision of being a multiethnic or multicultural church, it nearly always comes down to numbers. For a moment, don’t worry so much about getting to the 20% threshhold that enables your church to then “qualify” or pat yourself as a multicultural church. It’s over-rated in my opinion.
But we have the privilege and burden in influencing the ‘worldview’ of this and emerging generations of Christ followers. Read this and consider how this impacts the way you see your church, neighbor, country and ultimately, your ministry context. You will eventually grow extinct if you unable to adjust to a changing landscape where diversity IS the way we see the world.
Read this NY Times entitled In a Generation, Minorities May be the U.S. Majority. It’s not a matter of IF but WHEN: Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: christianity, church, culture, seattle
Tuesday, December 9, 2008 • 2:24 am
It’s crazy. I can’t believe it’s December already. The older I get, the faster time seems to fly. As the new year is soon upon us, I’m sharing 7 personal goals for the upcoming year. Why seven? Just sounds more spiritual…
What are some of your goals/resolutions?
Last week, we managed to get some of the lurkers and quiet blog readers off the stands and onto the field. So, let’s do it again!
In addition to “regulars” sharing their answers, I am especially inviting the lurkers and quiet blog readers to chime in. This is your chance to join in and become one of the cool people.
Here are my 7 personal goals for the upcoming year – all in hopes of honoring Christ through my life, family, and gifts: Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: family, marriage, seattle, books, goals, humanitarian, resolution
Monday, December 8, 2008 • 1:42 am
Minhee and I moved to Seattle in 1997. We are entering our 12th year in Seattle but it was only about 8 years ago when I really began to grow in love with the city of Seattle. I was kayaking in Lake Union when I just gushed over the beauty over the city. And I just started praying for the city and the hope – someday – of being able to plant a church in the city. God honored that prayer and on occasion, I’ll trek over to Kerry Park [few mins from Quest] and lift occasional prayers for the city and people of this city.
It isn’t a perfect city by any means: I wish there was more diversity; city remains ethnically divided; the road systems are wacky; a subway system would be nice; our sports teams are dreadfully cursed, we need more sun, etc. But there are also some amazing things about this city: the topography is absolutely breathtaking; the local music scene is alive and well; everything is green and wet; the city is a creative force and is the hub of numerous companies, etc.
How about you? Where do you live and what do you like or dislike about your city or town?
One of the regular chats I give when I’ve had the privilege of speaking at conferences or churches has been the importance of knowing, loving, and engaging your city. Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: church, churchplanting, family, leadership, ministry, quest church, seattle, travel
Saturday, December 6, 2008 • 2:15 am
I hope that while this entry topic might not be as alluring as your top search engine topics like Britney Spears and Barack Obama, you’ll take a few minutes to read up the progress of our global poverty organization. This has been one of the most humbling seasons of our life. When we went public with our vision to give our year’s salary to start this poverty initiative, we had absolutely no idea about what was in store with the financial crisis and meltdown. Our convictions have been tested but each time we think about how “bad” we have it, we’re reminded of the grave situation for the poorest of the poor – those affected by “extreme global poverty.”
Here’s 5 Updates on our Progress:
- FACEBOOK. On Friday, December 5, our Facebook Group – which can be accessed at http://fightglobalpoverty.com – surpassed 200,000 members. It’s pretty amazing considering we started the group on May 15, 2008. While there are no guarantees if folks will ultimately support our organization, it confirms our aspiration for our initiative in helping change the world:
Human Relationships + Technology + [Vision] = Movement Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: seattle, technology, compassion, facebook, global poverty, NGO, philantrophy, poverty
Thursday, May 22, 2008 • 12:41 am
As a father of two young girls [my youngest is a son], I am appalled at what seems to be a weekly occurrence of my daughters sharing with me how school boys keep telling them how much weaker, slower, inferior, and “you can’t do this” kind of statements. It’s opening my eyes and heart in painful ways. And the sad truth, I fear, is that not much will change as they grow to be adult women. They will experience opposition – albeit in more subtle or systemic ways or in the stories I share below, directly.
I’m not trying to get brownie points from my female readers, but here are two examples - locally and nationally – of the ways women are exploited and disrespected.
The first involves naked and bikini dressed female baristas. Yes, you read that correctly. Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: politics, seattle, hilary clinton
Friday, November 30, 2007 • 2:35 am
Sunday, November 4, 2007 • 1:38 am
The Seattle Times published an inspiring article entitled, Out of the Comfort Zone, as its feature article in today’s Sunday Pacific Northwest Magazine. It’s written by Paula Bock who has traveled/vacationed with her husband [and now daughter] to the Thai-Burma border annually since 1996. During their trips, they volunteer with the refugees on the border. In her words:
Volunteering on the Thai-Burma border for a dozen years has changed me. Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: family, seattle, travel
Thursday, October 25, 2007 • 1:39 am
Quest quietly turned six years old two Sundays ago. No hoopla. No hurrah. No fireworks. No big party. Just a quiet reflection with my wife at home. We enjoyed a small cake ourselves [for my birthday]. The six years have been immensely adventurous. At times, unbearable, painful, and suffocating. Other times, intoxicating, profound, and beautiful. Through it all, God has been steadfast and faithful. We feel so humbled and privileged.
Here’s a picture [before the warehouse/cafe renovation] and an article from the first year: Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: church, faith, religion, seattle, churchplanting, emerging church
Wednesday, October 24, 2007 • 1:24 am
In a city where there seems to be a cafe [mostly with those dang mermaids on the logo] on every other street corner, the path to viability and visibility has not been the easiest thing for our non-profit Q Cafe. We are still alive and kicking but barely. It’s been very tough and the church and cafe leadership have taken some time to really examine the mission of the cafe. Through these conversations, we’re collectively reminded how significant the cafe is to the ecclesiology of our church. Q, a non-profit and non-religious community cafe, is essential to our commitment to be an incarnational presence to our neighborhood and larger city.
Personally, I’m excited to grow back in love Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: emerging church, ministry, religion, seattle, cafes, coffee, Q Cafe, quest church
Friday, October 12, 2007 • 12:55 am
There’s a new hero in Seattle and she’s 86 years old and she lives in my neighborhood.
My family and I live in a neighborhood called Ballard in Seattle. We’ve lived in Seattle for 10 years and moved to Ballard about 3 years ago. On the most part, we enjoy living in this part of Seattle. Interestingly, everything 24 hours is within 3 blocks to our home – 24 hours Safeway, 24 hours Ballard Market, 24 hours McDonald’s, 24 hours Sunset Bowling, 24 Hours Walgreen, 24 hours Denny’s, etc. Crazy…
But Ballard is busting at its seams. It’s an example of a neighborhood with a long history that is fast changing with businesses, lots of condos, developments, and such. Many don’t know that Ballard was an independent city in 1890 but was annexed by Seattle in 1907. In 1900, Ballard was the 7th largest city in the state of Washington with a population of 4,568. How is it changing now? Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: family, religion, seattle
Monday, September 10, 2007 • 12:44 am
As we’re in the midst of a basic remodel of the church building we were recently given, I was just thinking that it was about 5 years ago in 2002 when not many of us at Quest [probably about 40-60] worked on renovating this Warehouse below into our place of Worship, non-profit Cafe, and space for some community engagement.
We renovated it and rented the building for the past five years. We now own the building and are busy renovating the church building right next door. Lots of work. I wish I learned something about construction when I was younger. Below are pictures that demonstrate the transformation of the building…
Read the rest of this entry »
Filed under: emerging church, quest church, religion, seattle