Archives For klampert

I have been doing “ministry” my whole life it seems. My dad was a pastor and my family can be best described as missionaries. I have been in ministry/working in and out of the church on my own and with my wife for 18 years now. I have seen it all. I have seen the amazing side of the church. The side that loves and cares for those who need jesus. Somewhere along the way, and I can’t remember exactly where, I saw the veil pulled back from the Church.

Pay no attention to the crap behind the curtain.

The hidden side of the church is an ugly side. It is a side of conflict, discouragement, gossip and hypocritical prejudice. We all know that this exists as a whole, but love the idea of our church leaders being exempt from such things.

Great words, rich with meaning and purpose, once gave the church purpose. Words like: evangelical, sacraments, charisma, and even Christian are now tainted by politics and culture. They now give way to judgement from people on the outside and Christ is automatically written off because of His followers.

“I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.”
― Mahatma Gandhi

I wanted to just spill some stuff from my soul and since this is my blog I can do what I want.

To those who are not in “the Church”

I am sorry…
I’m sorry that we have not loved as Christ loves us.
You are not our pet project.
We are not the sin police.
I am sorry you think we are nasty, judgmental, hypocritical, uncaring and isolated.
You are right…We are…
The truth is we are messy and scarred. Many of us are still bleeding from life.
We are torn and broken.
Broken people have sharp edges. Our words can cut deep.
Our leaders and pastors are good at pretending sometimes, but we are just as messed up.
We all need jesus.
What sins are you carrying?
I am carrying sin as well, but I get to lay it at the feet of jesus.
Please don’t let the cloud of my mess and imperfections make it hard for you to look through the Fog and see the light of Christ.
My job as a pastor is not to judge you.
My job is not to change you.
My job is not to constantly point out your cuts and then pour salt on the wound.

My job is to grab your arm and walk side by side with you helping us both chase after Jesus and rest in the shadow of His grace.

To those who are in “the Church”

Awake O sleeper. Rise from your apathy.
Stop licking your wounds while cutting others.
The church is a hospital for the sick and for those who don’t know there is a cure.
It is not a country club and a place to get “high” on the spirit.
If the spirit keeps telling you to stay in the building and not go tell others about God then you are listening to the wrong spirit.
Our call is to love.
More importantly our call is to walk in humility.
Always remember we are in constant need of God’s grace.
We can’t give grace when we haven’t received it yet
We can’t give the love of Christ to others when we haven’t submitted ourselves to Him.
Don’t forsake the one that loves you and gave His life for you and then pretend you are sacrificing sitting in the comfort of your brand new church chair.
Stop arguing.
Stop debating meaningless drivel.
Stop justifying and defending church culture and instead BE THE CHURCH.

Our job as the church is to point others to Jesus.
We are to shadow Jesus. To copy how He heals the broken hearted. To copy how He sets the captives free.
We are to be ambassadors of His love.
Preach transformation.
Preach grace
More importantly ask God to help you live it.

 

It is 12:24am…

5/6ths of the klampert family stayed awake for the ball drop.

I am about to go to sleep and can’t quite because I am just floored about how the year has gone.
My wife, Kelly, said to me “It’s been a week already since Christmas…It went too quick!”.
What I find amazing about that statement is that the year seems to have gone by even quicker.

This was an amazing year for our family. The kids are growing up fast and getting so smart. We have our great times and we have our challenges like every family, but at the end of the day We have four of the coolest kids on the planet.

We had the opportunity to minister at a great church this year and I had the wonderful pleasure of pastoring in worship some amazing people.

God gave me a personal retreat where I could be with friends in the mountains and worship. This led to the production of a very raw, live worship album.

This summer, I had the privilege of seeing God move prophetically through friends in the band “the brothers mcclurg” at the church I was working at. Even more amazing God made it very clear that He is ready to shake the foundations of our area and he healed a man who could barely walk that night.
Miracle after miracle. Strongholds were broken and broken were made whole. Our God has been good this year.

The changes came swiftly after. I stepped down from my role at the church and our family followed God’s leading to head into prayer and seek God’s heart and call with surrender and with no personal agenda.

God birthed in myself and 3 other families to start a new church in Newport County. He gave us a call and a vision. God followed that with a name; Ember Church. He made it clear that we would pastor the church together as 4 co-pastors. I will blog on this more later, but it has taught me so much about submission and surrender.

So much has changed this past year. So much pain and confusion. So much Joy and victory. Much is uncertain about the next year, but i know it is well with my soul.

I am praying 2014 is a year not of resolution, but instead a year of restitution and a year of revolution.
I pray God binds my family together even more strongly this year.
I pray God makes my marriage bulletproof.
I pray God helps us instill the fruit of the spirit in our kids.
I pray for my co-pastors that He would do the same for them.
I pray for an awakening in our city.
I pray for dreams and visions.
I pray that I can be used as God’s instrument.
I pray that Ember Church grows from the lost finding Jesus.
I pray the other churches around us overflow with people seeking hope.
I pray we see revival in the Church and that God would breathe on these dry bones.
I pray for miracles and that the glory of God would flood our city!

“It’s time for heaven to invade, and all the earth to shake
It’s time for the miraculous. It’s time for dreams to be unleashed
And every curse to cease. I know nothing is impossible”
-Daniel Bashta

trail

I was doing some internet strolling this past week while in prayer and thinking about ministry leading and I kept getting this picture of a trail guide. Once that was in my brain I did a little searching and came across an article on WikiHow called “How to lead a nature walk“. I found it very interesting and things started to pop up in my brain as I went through each step and compared to the local church and leading towards a vision. Below is the list on leading a nature walk and how it translates to the church

1. Read up about the local plants and animals that live in your area. Field guides are a good introduction to acquiring this skill set. So is tapping the wisdom of long-time naturalists who might live nearby.

Church: Study the word, be in prayer, read books, find a mentor

2. Take a hike through the area beforehand and note any unusual features about the area. Are there nests to observe or evidence of animal activity (beaver damage to trees along a riverbank for example)?

Church: Plan and be sensitive to the Holy Spirit. Canvass the field. Make sure to grab your compass (Jesus) and fix your eyes on him

3. On the day of the tour, gather your group and assess their physical limitations if any. Will the weather impact slipperiness of trails? Is there a more comfortable, safer alternate?

Church: Assess the people you are leading and their spiritual limitations. Take a look at the plan ahead and see if you need to disciple more to prepare for the road ahead.

4. Introduce yourself. Provide your group with a brief explanation of the planned walk. Give out maps if relevant. Point out comfort facilities; it is a good idea to suggest a rest stop before heading off. If you have any heavy props to show, this is a good time to do it (to avoid carrying them, or forgetting them at the end of the walk).

Church: Introduce vision, preach vision, and then repeat. Make sure to communicate so everybody understands the vision.

5. Have the members of the group introduce themselves to one another. This way they can get to feel comfortable around one another quickly.

Church: An effective team is most often a team with real relationships. Foster authenticity and community.

6. Ask members of your group to let you know what they would be most interested in viewing, for example, edible plants, birds, nests, burrows, medicinal plants, etc. You can then tailor the hike as much as possible to their interests.

Church: Make sure to ask people their desires and hopes and give them ownership along the way.

7. Find out if anyone is phobic about snakes, spiders, insects or any other animals that you may see on your hike. You may actually be able to help them face their fears if you show them how to correctly handle the animals. At the very least, provide appropriate reassurances as to the group’s safety.

Church: Sin, addiction, fear, etc will always thwart moving forward with a vision. Creating an environment where you can put everything on the table is important. As hinderances come up you will be more prepared to address them.

8. During the tour, ask questions, don’t talk at people. Engage them by pointing out a few things and then let them take it from there. Be open to questions.

Church: Engage people and hearts. Lead by example and as a servant. Don’t dictate.

9. Collect your walk items. Ensure that all your other carry items are with you, such as demonstration props, and essentials such as First Aid, maps, two-way radio, water, snacks, etc. When it’s time to set off on the walk – either lead the way or point the way where appropriate.

Church: Be prepared and well planned. The same God that can change anything with a word also honors those who plan and are good stewards of His work

10. Give presentations where appropriate during the walk. When you make your stop to wait for the group to catch up, adjust your position so that you are positioned in the middle of the group. With you at the middle of the group, the whole group has a better chance of hearing your talk and seeing any activity.

Church: Use every opportunity to preach Jesus. In the same way Jesus entered our story we have entered His and taking time to remind people along the way is important.

11. Be aware that there will always be stragglers. If you’re leading without others, take a head count and silently add up the numbers at regular intervals. If you’re lucky enough to be a leader with a few sweepers, use the sweepers to check if everyone has arrived at a stop. One of the sweepers can always be elected to return to base if needed, without disrupting the whole group. If you have a very large group that feels unwieldy in terms of managing, it might be better to break this large group into smaller groups, making sure to keep people with their family/friend groupings.

Church: Press forward and take care of those who drift. Make sure not to let one persons problems monopolize or deter the group from the vision and instead equip people to care and mentor them.

12. Prefer frequent shorter stops over longer, less frequent stops. When you have a group of mixed fitness, interest levels, and stamina, it is best to make stops short and frequent, so as to maintain the group’s attention.

Church: Short rests are fine. Burn out ends vision. Avoid long breaks because it breed complacency and makes people selfish and give up on the vision

13. Children are amazingly observant – and they usually are more interested in animals than plants and other non-moving things, so if they’re along, focus on their interests too!

Church: Jesus said let the children come to me and we are to have the heart and faith of a child. We need to watch them and listen to them along the way because they see and feel things in ways we never will.

14. Allow time for photo-taking. Depending on the length of the walk, drink and refreshment breaks will also need to be considered. Find clean, dry, sturdy logs, mossy or grass patches, etc. to sit on for a rest where needed.

Church: Take time to breathe. Go out with your wife. Play and enjoy life. Take a rest and get away from the noise. Getting burned out kills vision and drive

15. When the tour is completed, ask people what their favorite part was and note that for your next field outing.

Church: When tasks are done; when vision is complete; when God brings visions and victories… talk about them; document them; take pictures so you can learn and always have a reminder of God’s faithfulness

16. Finish with a stirring message that recaps the experience. Ensure that it includes conservation messages that draw on what the group has seen, so that their experience informs them about the future opportunities for stewardship that they might be able to participate in directly too.

Church: With every journey make sure to lead people in a way that teaches that each “hike” is a trip towards the larger vision of caring for people and leading them to Christ.

birdofprey2A while ago I wrote a post about a lesson I learned from an excursion at a sanctuary for Birds of prey. Even though I get messages every once in a while from people who have read the post, It has been a long time since I have thought about it.

A few nights ago however our family was watching a great cartoon series called “Redwall“.

In the cartoon a few little mice are taking care of a Red Kite who has a broken wing. The bird starts freaking out because it does not want to be helped so they have to give her a sleeping potion so they can set her wing.

The Redwall Abbey Monk (mouse) says to the nurse, “Cornflower”, something very interesting.

“There is nothing more dangerous than an injured animal”

This line from the little mouse struck me. It is a sad but frequent affair that people in the church tend to HURT others out of their own hurt.  Like my first post on this subject, the truth is we love to hide our hurt and really only ask for help when we are at a critical state. It also seems that regardless if we hide it or not we end up injuring others as we flail around in our lives.

Broken people truly do have sharp edges.

“By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” (John 13:35)

How can we show God’s love while we are wounding others?
How can we avoid exacerbating our current injuries?

The Bible says in Ephesians that our conflict is spiritual and not against flesh and blood. We need to remind ourselves to be aware of situations where we are attacking the wrong thing.

“Be alert and always keep on praying” (Ephesians 6:18)
We need to be vigilant in prayer. Prayer is our defense. Prayer is our bulletproof vest. A lack of prayer life makes you vulnerable.

Galatians 5:22-23 says “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control…”

Take an account of the fruit in your life. Is the Spirit visible in us. Do we pour out the goodness of the Lord, or are we constantly scraping our open festering wounds on anything that we encounter?

Another side of this is made clear in this quote:

“We have been called to heal wounds, to unite what has fallen apart, and to bring home those who have lost their way.”

― St. Francis of Assisi

As I was thinking, praying and reading about these birds I came across an article that said: “An injured bird will not know you are trying to help it and will resist your efforts in whatever way it can…When rescuing these birds the rescuer must take precautions to avoid being stabbed, bitten or clawed by the “rescuee.””

As much as we have been called to heal wounds we must be covered in prayer and walk forward, careful to stay in tune with the holy spirit. We need the “covering” to avoid being stabbed, bitten, or clawed. We need to be walking in love and trying to be like Christ by not judging others to insure we don’t injure people more.

Can we stop the church from hurting itself?
We live in a fallen world and there will always be pain and suffering till our Lord returns, but… WE can work on trying to be more like Christ. We can seek to love others in the same way He loves us. We can be willing to step into a dangerous situation just to help one scared “Bird of Prey”.

“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things.” Phil 4:8

ironman

Iron Man 3: a review from a comic book nerd dad –
TIRADE ALERT

Last night I took my awesome wife out to see iron man 3. I have been crazy excited about this movie for ages. We bought tickets hours ahead of time and showed up 30 min early, greeted by a nice long long of fanboys and 4 year olds. 4 year olds? Let me segway here for a moment. I have many friends that let their kids see movies like this and ones that are PG-13 when the kids are clearly 6 years away from ever meeting that restriction age. I am fully aware that some PG movies play like PG-13 and some PG-13 movies really could pass for PG. I also know that every parent gets to choose how they parent. We might be in the extreme in that we haven’t let any of our kids, including our 12 year old, see any of the comic book movies.

The reason is simple… Innocence.

It is a word we seemed to have lost along the way in regards to our kids. We live in a day in age when 15 year olds can get the morning after pill, children bring guns to school, bullies no longer just pull hair, and terrorism can come from your next door neighbor. It’s possible some of my friends might be mad at me for saying this, but as parents I think more than ever we need to guard the innocence in our children. Notice I didn’t say put them in a bubble, but there is a difference between our kids just experiencing life and parents introducing violence and sex into an 8 year olds brain and heart. I will get back to that in a second.

This Iron Man was fantastic. It had every element I love from the comic, the other iron man films and even tying in the avengers through the movie. Some of the twists were interesting and I will eliminate spoilers here. Some changes I liked and some I didn’t.

The writing in this film is brilliant. Character development, story arc, love interest, and it keeps you entertained from beginning to end. Through the movie we start to see bits of humility shine through stark and yet we retain his witty ego which is a blast to watch. I would have loved to have seen iron mans Extensis armor. I can’t wait for Avengers 2.

Gwyneth Paltrow, an actress I am normally not a fan of, was pretty great in the film.Gwyneth is a woman who supposedly works out every day for 2 hours with personal trainer to the stars, Tracy Anderson. I actually have one of Tracy’s videos that my wife and I have worked out to and it kicked our tails. What I noticed in the film was they made sure to as much as humanly possible show Gwyneth’s Abs. At the end of the credits I was waiting for a workout video info-mercial.

Now back to what I started with. This was the most violent and dark film of the marvel superhero genre so far. It didn’t bother me one bit because I am 36 and have been reading comics all my life. I am a nerd/geek and proud of it. While I was watching a film a film with a hero that of course saves the day it also had terrorism, people being burned, people being shot, evil characters in bed with two women, and very close to home flickering scenes of maniacal evil people. The whole time I sat there I enjoyed one of my favorite characters, but only could slightly because I watched parents bring their 4 year olds into the room. In front of us 7 and 8 year olds were cheering their hero while watching scenes sprinkled with violence that was growing them up too fast.

I can go on for days on this, but let me end with this:
Iron man gets 5 stars from me. Its brilliant and dark and awesome. It is also PG-13 for a reason.
The parents who brought there 4-11 year olds into the theater last night get -12 stars because they chose not to exercise wisdom and are subjecting their kids to “comic book violence”. As much as we would not like to admit it the “comic book violence” we saw on that movie is happening all around the world even as I type this.

So GO SEE IRON MAN 3!!!! but… for the sake of keeping our children innocent for just a little bit longer please don’t take them with you.