December 9, 2011

Making the Move

I've recently started toying around with Wordpress and have made the move to their platform. The domain name is already pointed there, however, if you use a reader to get this, you may need to restart your rss as it is coming from a different feed!


See you over at!

December 6, 2011

Who Do I Think I Am?

I was venting a bit the other day to a few friends about the place that God seemed to have me at the time. Basically looking at my own life and saying, "You know what. I could do a better job with this whole thing." I was convinced, in that moment that my life was one thing, and given my own intellect, it could be something much greater. Even after my fury was poured out, I left that conversation, not really remembering anything my friend had said, still fuming about my current situation and my life. I was so frustrated with my current set of circumstances that I was clearly over analyzing certain aspects of the situation and clearly doubting the providence of the one that I was preaching about 5 days earlier.

I mean if I am really honest about it, my personal plan would be to glorify myself. Be the coolest pastor. Be the pastor of the biggest church. Have 6 million followers on Twitter and like a gajillion friends on facebook. I'd have written books and have websites and all sorts of social media apps so that people could continue to stay in touch with me and my ministry. I'd speak at the biggest events. I'd be known by a ton of people. Because its not time yet.

Because I'm not humble enough yet.
Because I've not gone through the Holy Spirit-guided fires.
Because I haven't seen the things and experienced the things that I would have to go through to have all of those things and still be humble; and still consider Jesus as my Lord and my Savior.

I would never say that that is my belief of God's ultimate plan for me. I also would never say that I truly desire all of that. However, given the chance, I know it would be a temptation for me. A temptation so great that I am not sure, given my present status in life, I would be willing to fight and willing to wage war against.

But I'm not done yet. And God's not through with me yet. And that is a terribly difficult thing to accept as a controlling, fixing, get things done, "Big D" personality.

The real statement to me is "who do I think I am?" Not for questioning where I am in my life, but for questioning where I'm going. For questioning the process that God is continuing and has promised to continue until He returns. I am not God and I am not the author of my salvation. He is. And today, I hold on to that promise.

"being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus." - Philippians 1:6

December 4, 2011

Wearing Sunglasses in Tunnels Makes it Pretty Hard to See Clearly

I was recently in a very "freaked out" temperament. I couldn't see the light at the end of the short tunnel  that I was driving through. It was interesting, because I was frustrated with myself and the things that I hadn't taken care of or had forgotten to be disciplined with. This, of course, led me to get a little frustrated at myself. I began to put on my own sunglasses of self-centeredness that are aimed at trying to skew my own view of what is going on in my life. I tried to ignore certain things so that I could deal with doing my job, living my life, and continuing to press on. But, the problem is, you can't see very well when you have sunglasses on and you are driving through a tunnel.

And like the sign says, you have to watch out for slow moving traffic in tunnels, because some other people aren't willing to drive as fast as you are. So, I get overly frustrated at the slow moving traffic because I can't see them coming up, all because I have my self-centered sunglasses on and am just being stupid. After this, my frustration begins to build up as I get frustrated at the fact that there is even a tunnel here. Why in the world am I doing what I'm doing and why am I trapped in this place? I begin to question so much more than just the slow moving traffic or my the conditions of the road. I begin to question and get frustrated with the tunnel that is my path in life through the mountain and my life turns into this big crying towel fest where nothing gets done all because I didn't read the signs and see that I should just take off my sunglasses.

"I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." - John 16:33

Take off the sunglasses of self-centeredness. Focus on the Son and the tunnel that He might have us in so that we can come out on the other side trusting that it is the path He has set before us. Trust in His plan and purpose. Trust in the people He has put in front of you. You will make it. He has overcome the world.

Want to get involved?

If you attend NMC and have been looking for that opportunity to serve, I think I might have a spot for you. We are looking to raise up a few more teachers for our Sunday morning program. This ranges from Youth Class Teachers to Assistant Teachers to Elective Class instructors. We are looking for men and women who are ready to step up and answer the call that God has placed on their lives to work with Senior Highers.

If you think that that might be you, leave a note in the comment section and I will get in touch with your or send me an email and we can get the process started!

November 28, 2011

The Beauty of Earth

As I write this, we are travelling down through the heart of the United States through Kentucky and Tennessee onward to Atlanta, Georgia, one of my favorite places. As we drive, I am blessed to have a front row view of the scenery that continues to change and become increasingly textured and contoured. In the advent of autumn and the dawn of leafless trees, deadened grass and the bony structures of the ash trees we pass, the trueness of the ground is revealed.

What continues to be displayed is the power of God to remain the arbiter of truth and the definer of the definite. We build roads through the mountains, we fix train tracks on the sides of hills, we burrow tunnels into the depths of the earth, and yet, the depths remain deep, the hills continue to hold, and the mountains still have not bowed at the beckon of our will. The structures that He established at the beginning of history remain true even today.

He is the creator, sustainer, and judge. He is immovable. He is strong. He is deep. He is unchanging from the beginning to the end. May His name be praised!

November 26, 2011

Too Much in the Way

It happens from time to time, but lately, it happened again. It looks like writer's block, but it is a lot worse than that. It turns from writer's block to a full-fledged idea block. It's that moment where all the ideas that are floating around in my brain all converge on the one exit point that is either my mouth or my fingers and neither has ever done a very good job of processing quickly or with precision when under pressure. And typically, this is when there are so many ideas in my head that I can't figure out which one to figure out so that I can figure which one is the most beneficial to figure out. You sense my dilemma.

So, I'm very thankful for a short week this week. At the same time, I'm going to be heading into another short week. So perhaps that isn't that good. Regardless, I'm ready to get thinking again. Just need to make some space upstairs.

What about you? What do you do to make space in your head?

November 10, 2011

Are We Reckless?

What holds us back?

As Christians, we have so many passages of scripture that are intended to unleash us to the world and empower us to live recklessly for the sake of His name. Why is it so hard for us to trust that and live that way?

"The Lord is my Shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside still waters. He restores my soul. He leads me in paths of righteousness for his name's sake." - Psalm 23:1-3 (It doesn't end there in this chapter)

"Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him, and he will act. He will bring forth your righteousness as the light, and your justice as the noonday." - Psalm 37:4-6

The list could go on and on. Paul was so zealous for the sake of Christ and he did it by living his life in reckless abandon for the sake of the name of Jesus Christ. How free he must of have felt?! How empowered by the Spirit he must have been!? Talk about living on the edge! He knew the voice of the Lord and he went and did whatever it said.

We are so good at asking questions. We are extremely talented at analyzing things. We think that wisdom resides in thinking through things; that we can figure out what the Will of God is. Why don't we ask one question, only one question? The trick is we can't lie to ourselves. We can't falsify our response or we miss out and we fail to hear the wisdom in the Psalms.

All we need to ask:
"Is that the voice of the Lord?"
If the answer is "yes," then go. If the answer is "no," then stay.

We are so good at over complicating these things. Let's just trust Him! He's on the throne! He can contend with our misunderstandings and failures (He does it all of the time.). I wonder what a world with Christians who are pursuing Christ like that looks like.

November 8, 2011

For Whose Namesake?

Have you ever stopped and considered what's in a name?

Psalm 23:3 doesn't read the way it does because God simply wants to make David righteous. There is no doubt that this is part of God's mission to bring his People back to him. However, he does it for his name's sake. There is weight there. There is weight in the way that Jesus relates the reaction of the world to his disciples. There is weight in the life that Paul lived and when I say his name, we know that weight. And I'm not sure we grasp that very easily or very well.

There are many in this country who have taken to making a name for themselves. I am not innocent from this desire or vain ambition. It seems that a growing trend in the world is to make an individual mark on the world by dancing to a different beat or making my life stand for, or represent, something great, something significant. We want to live for our own name's sake. And frankly, I'm sick of seeing the Church try and do the same thing.

The Church has begun to do what it can to make a name for itself, both individually and collectively. We lift up worship leaders, worshippers, churches, and speakers to a level of unhealth that mimics, if not personifies, idolatry. We strive to proclaim the name of _________ church or _______________ (insert your favorite "Christian" artist or speaker). And we have gravely missed the point.

I recently downloaded a new song that we have been singing at my church called "Great I Am" by New Life Worship. We started singing it when its writer, Jared Anderson, came to my church. I love the lyrics of this song because it forces us to proclaim our love for the Name that is truly above all names.

I am committing to live for a Name other than my name.

Geoffrey Cocanower doesn't free sinners.
Geoffrey Cocanower doesn't feed the hungry.
Geoffrey Cocanower doesn't provide strength to the weak.
Geoffrey Cocanower didn't die on the Cross at Cavalry.
Geoffrey Cocanower isn't seated at the right hand of God.

People don't bow at the name of Geoffrey Cocanower.
People won't bow at the name of Geoffrey Cocanower.
Demons don't shudder at the name of Geoffrey Cocanower.
Satan doesn't tremble at the sound of Geoffrey Cocanower.

His name is Jesus.
His name is I Am.
His name moves mountains.
His name sets the captive free.
His name is worthy to be praised.

"For you are my rock and my fortress; and for your name's sake you lead me and guide me;" - Psalm 31:3

November 6, 2011

Slaying Giants

I've heard it many times, but I've never actually reflected long enough to see that it was true in my life until right about now. You know that saying that goes something like, "Everything that you have experienced to this point has prepared you for this exact moment" or something like that. That is so easy to say and yet so hard to believe and put into practice unless you are willing to, literally, just do/believe it.

Pastor Dave took us through 2 Samuel 17 and David's interaction with Goliath this past Sunday. Let me tell you, add in the fact that it has been like a month since I have gotten into a service (let's not talk about that one) and I needed to hear from God through P. Dave and you have the makings of a pretty significant Sunday. But today, the little snippet that I took away from that message is this: Goliath wasn't David's biggest giant.

Sure, this was the first time that we would see David's bravery obviously recorded, that is without doubt. But, David will face bigger giants later in life. David has to face the music from Nathan, David pours his life out in the Psalms, David has to face his own temptation and selfish ambitions, and yet. And yet, he remains a man after God's own heart. 

I have come to the end of a tough season. A season that has stretched me and challenged me greatly. But the reality is, this is just the beginning. I'm only 25 and if I think that this was all I was meant for, I am terribly mistaken. There are greater giants that God has set before me to slay. And I'm ready.