I loved what Andrew and Stereo Waltz films did in this. I can’t wait to see the finished!
Tags: Cherie Blanchette, EXPRESSION58, marriage, shawn boltz, shawn bolz, shawnbolz
I got married to the love of my life….
So Cherie and I got home from our honeymoon and we settled into our little house in Glendale Hills. I don’t know how I did life alone for so long. Marriage is a wonderful thing that brings a different life then singleness. I loved my single years so much so I am in no way discounting the impact of my single life, but this season, this year everything changed.
2 became 1.
I am enjoying who she is, who I am with her, and who God is in us. Its a pretty magical (in the Disney sense) time. Even though I had a full amazing life before her I can not remember life without her. I love how it feels to do every day and every moment with someone else. Its a sacrifice but not a hardship.
I believe that God is bringing many people together but more then that I believe its because many people have been making themselves ready for the change. Cherie and I would have been miserable if we both hadn’t been on such a deep journey of personal transformation before we met each other. Its been a perfect combo because even when we struggle we love to see what we can change and how we can get new skills or creativity to do things better. I believe when you feel empowered relationships don’t have to cause more pain then they bring life.
So we are in love and married and ready for the new life, the life I can’t remember anything before. I highly recommend doing life with somebody.
Tags: Cherie Blanchette, EXPRESSION58, shawn bolz, shawn bolz marriage, shawn bolz weddding
Is the official site with all the info on where (its at Expression58) at 3PM. We also have included a guest registry and engagement pics. Come hang out with us!
From Expression58 Care Team:
Who is invited to the Bolz Reception: Everyone who wants to celebrate their love
What time: 3PM
What to bring: Finger food or dessert
Where are they registered: Please see website if you want to see their registry. We will have an area for cards or gifts but feel free to just come and celebrate
Dress: Business Casual
We are so excited to share their special day with them. If you need any information contact email@example.com
From Shawn & Cherie:
We couldn’t invite all of our friends and our church to our small ceremony in April so Expression58 is hosting a wedding reception on May 20, 2012 for us! We are so excited and honored and would love for all of our extended church family and ministry family as well as our friends and people who have just believed in us to be with us. You are special!
If you want to celebrate with us come see wedding photos and hear our story! Its going to be fun!
We love our love and am so privileged to celebrate it with you!
Tags: bob jones, disaster, earthquake, earthquake in la, EXPRESSION58, great faith church, morning star ministries, prohpetic perspective, prophecy, prophecy about california, prophetic bulleton, rick joyner, shawn bolz
I am going to write into the prophecies that have been going around from Rick Joyner and Bob Jones and I know this is very sensitive for many of you. I know the prophecies about California and the west coast having an Earthquake and nuclear melt down are all the buzz right now especially for those of you who received the most recent transcript from Bob Jones to the korean community last night which was very strong. I love Rick Joyner and I adore Bob Jones, but I want to give a different perspective. They are mature and can handle the fact that I am going to give an alternate view (and I welcome their feedback). Obviously you all need to pray and decide if you are supposed to stay on the West Coast or not, but for me it is a very easy decision, I have already heard God and therefore if something big does happen then I will be here for it.
I have never heard Bob so adamant about words before,he has actually told people to move away from California and the west coast. This is bolder then I have ever heard him on prophetic words. I felt I needed to address our stance on it.
I also know how many times his words have been misunderstood or didn’t have full interpretations or even full revelation. Prophets see in part, that is why it is helpful when 2 or 3 of them have these words so that you get a more full interpretation. One series of words Bob got was in the 1980s. He saw rioting would break out in the streets of Los Angeles, and that there would be a curfew and that people would die in the streets. He called them race riots and he said that it would be so dangerous in the streets that people wouldn’t leave their houses and that corporal punishment would be threatened. As we know this happened strongly, but not as strongly as the word put fear into people. The riots affected about 3 neighborhoods it was around 16 blocks, and about 40,000-200,000 people living or working in those areas were affected by the actual riots. This was not a city devastation that Christians in LA were planning for based on the word, as a matter of fact people in Sherman Oaks or Malibu never were affected by any of it except the sadness of the actual issue. There are 18 million here, and less then 200,000 were affected but the word felt like everyone could be doomed by the issue and the apocalypse was coming. I am not saying that was Bob’s intention but because we are still learning how to give and receive words, there is much bad interpretation and little to no activation on what to do. Again not Bob’s fault but it can show you that the prophetic really needs stewardship.
Another thing to note about that particular word was when Bob gave that word he was in Orange County prophesying like it was LA, so even the church in Orange County was very scared for themselves and yet nothing happened even remotely close to them.
About the Earthquake and Nuclear fallout: God has not been speaking to anyone I know in California about this theme for now. No one IN California or the west coast is getting these words on a level to suggest to people to actually move away. I am not trying to create a waring perspective between the west coast and east coast prophets but consider this:
Rick Joyner and Bob Jones don’t have a deep love for California and think it is a place where too much evil happens. Both of them have had little to no good prophecy for California. The problem with that is what if a Muslim got saved from the middle east and started prophesying disaster over Israel? Would we listen even if they were accurate everywhere else? I think God would rather use Israelis to prophecy about their future or America or someone who loves them.
If I began to prophecy over Fort Mills where Rick Joyner is from that there was a Tsunami coming and they should move, he would know because of what God has planted there for his movement that he would have to address the words. I know Rick enough to know that he would not stand for fear or for misinterpretation of possibilities to drive out the awesome thing they are believing for. It is the same for me, I am not debunking Rick or Bob but I am judging their words and want to say a few things about them.
1) These words are not promises from God but they are warnings. Bob Jones gave a warning several years ago about a Tsunami in LA hitting in 2010. There was not one, but in the natural we had the State prepare for one and put up Tsunami signs. Over 70 believers here that I know began to have dreams about Tsunamis and most of them hadn’t heard Bob’s word. We began to pray and there was State wide prayer organized by several different organizations and the Tsunami didn’t come. Praise God!
2) Words from God should not cause mass panic and fear but perspective and hope: You can’t tell people by the millions to move away without strategy…this is just foolish. If God was really giving us a perspective of mercy to move away because some big devastation was going to happen, then we should have a clearer directive then “Move away nuclear power is going to wipe you out probably in 6 months.” Bob’s most recent words were to move away by September 2011. What we can do with this is ask God together on the west coast for strategy. What SHOULD we do besides prayer? Maybe nothing, maybe something. When has anything terrible been unavoidable in the whole New Testament?
3) Words from God should carry clear instruction: When Agabus prophesied a drought in Acts, it was so that the believers were ready and could store up enough food (not just for them but for their small region). This drought effected less then 100,000 people and they were completely prepared with strategy and understanding on what to do. The words Bob gave were not clear and had no apostolic preparation. That means that the clearest way to respond is still intercession or moving. Those are the only two choices we were given by him.
3) God always has an army in the hardest places: Those of you who know you are supposed to be here, you are the army of the Kingdom who can help if something terrible does happen. That means you get to do relief and restoration and there is nothing like seeing the Kingdom move when there is so much need! Its amazing. I have done relief for over 20 years off and on, and God just shows up in the most beautiful way. Its a good time to do disaster preparedness and learn what is available in your city.
4) Other prophecies by Bob Jones: One word that Bob gave our friends just last year (and then repeated to us) is that the angel Uriel was standing over the plates in California with one foot on each side and holding them together and as long as the church would keep praying in God’s purposes we would be safe and he would hold them together. I don’t know what to do when he just gave that word and is now prophesying about the earthquake but I like the visitation of the angel better then the potential earthquake so we are praying with that.
I am not scared and I don’t feel I need to heed their warnings to move except to pray my guts out but I love them. Everyone has to decide for themselves. Again these are not promises from God they are potentials. We are Christians and we have to exercise power over the storms.
Also I am not rejecting Bob or Rick over my perspective nor am I saying they are wrong. I am just trying to give more perspective so we can be smarter in how we receive their words and what we do about what they are saying. We have to get a lot more intellegent about how we listen.
my new Dating book is out: nonreligiousguide.com
Helpful questions to pray through for yourself:
I have heard the words about disaster coming to the west coast, is moving an option for me?
Do I know how to be prepared in a disaster?
Since part of the prophecy is about nuclear leak do I live anywhere near a nuclear facility and am I prepared with nuclear relief supplies if I am?
What is our cities plan of evacuation and does my whole family know?
What is the current best earthquake proof plan for my property, for my workplace, for my childs school?
How can our church pray into what God is doing (not just focusing on the possible natural disaster that was prophesied)
Tags: christianinty, disaster response, earthquake, God's judgement, Jim Berkland, prophetic judgement, wrath
So yesterday I was bombarded by good meaning people (including my mother) who are responding to Jim Berkland who is an Earthquake expert who is predicting another quake here on the west coast (most likely LA) in the next week or so.
I love our family and our crew of friends. Its important that you hear my perspective on these types of issues if you are involved with us because it will help you know how my heart relates to disaster and crises.
I think this is timely information and it is good for us to be aware so we can be prepared but I have a few observations:
1) Humanity was never supposed to experience these disasters so its impossible to be completely prepared for them. Meaning: The Earth was never meant to groan and be dysfunctional but because of the fall it has been a mess. There are whole camps of Christians who overly prepare and have an inordinate focus on this preparation. No one predicted on time the New Orleans Hurricane or the Japan Earthquake….they happened. Preparedness is very important but it can’t be at the expense of peace.
2) The sources (whether prophetic or natural) of prediction are mostly wrong. Jim Berkland (who is the lastest source for the Earthquake in America) has tried to predict Earthquakes for decades and was right within 4 days of the San Francisco quake but that’s because his group has reported the possibility of over 200 Earthquakes…eventually you will get it right even if the public doesn’t look at the hundreds that did not happen. I applaud his efforts because seismology is such an unpredictable field, but the way the media has ran with this is ridiculous.
3) Christians are amazing in the days of adversity because we can move in the compassion of God and care for people that we would normally want to run from or cities we would rather escape from. The modern examples are profound: Haiti, New Orleans, and now Japan, etc have their best relief efforts from Christians. We have been involved in disaster relief, red zone missions, war zone missions, etc and you see Jesus on another whole level when you participate with Heavens solution to these terrible disasters and wars. Just like Doctors in Emergency rooms kick into another gear, Christians have the Spirit of God inside of them and if they are participating with Him they will find themselves capable of amazing heart attitudes and abilities during trauma. Christians who teach that we are to hide away or horde in those days of adversity and trial have a limited theology on the nature of Jesus who came to bring His government of peace and restoration. One of the greatest failures of the Roman Empire in its end was hoarding food, finances, resources, etc. People became so fearful they began to hoard and its proven that most the regions that fell first had the resources to maintain the region but those resources were being held back by Christian (and some none Christian) hoarding leaders.
4) You can prepare in more effective ways then hoarding and seperating. Your local fire department or police stations have programs like C.E.R.T. Which is an emergency disaster preparedness to help your city in times of trial. They are desperate to get churches involved. You can have some of your members become chaplains to police forces, fire depts, sports teams, prisons, so you will have access to disaster relief locations if things do happen, you can find out your cities disaster relief plan for different types of disasters which is public domain….find out the hundreds of thousands to millions of dollars your state has put into its disaster plans because America is not as stupid as the news media makes it sound. Find out what has worked in the disasters that your city is threatened with in the past and do basic education. Your average joe doesn’t need to focus on impending doom, but they need to be prepared for potential disasters. You can be part of private and public food banks to find out how to funnel foods to them so that there is an abundance.
5) One of the most important issues: Be part of a Kingdom and relief effort now. If you are becoming fearful about running out of something in the future, be part of your cities solution now and begin to find out the statistics of hunger in your city and become an answer. LA has about 15% malnutrition and we only feed maybe 17,000 meals a day to our poor and homeless population. Our food banks are low on quality food, and we need thousands of pounds of food and water now. If we could make this a well oiled process now we would be WAY ahead if a disaster hit because these food banks which work for the homeless in these days will work for the whole city in disaster days. In New Orleans, our friends Blood and Fire were feeding like 3500+ meals a day to relief workers and it was because they were already feeding people before that so it was easy to jump into helping. Bottom line is Christians can be ridiculous at hoarding resources when in a city like ours (LA) there isn’t enough food being stored for our current food crises right now. Be a part of healing your current food crises in your city and you will begin to understand how to handle a disaster (there is probably one already going on but its covered up by normalness). PS this is one of the areas that the Obama administration shines because they are amazing at disaster plans and social justice.
6) Modern History proves that disasters have not grown the church. The churches get full for a few weeks after, but its the goodness of God and the Kingdom of life that make people want to stay involved in their faith. I remember these Christians who were like “Katrina will force revival, New Orleans will know they have to turn to God now.” But you know what? Although God moves powerfully in peoples hearts when they are in disaster, it is not a healthy thing to say “This is the revival agent we have been waiting for!” The reality is all of Africa is in disaster all the time that is like in the days that most Christians think the end times will look like. Africa’s revival is not in response to its destruction, it is in response to seeing there is a GOOD GOD who restores all things and gives purpose beyond human survival. We have unrealistic expectations as western world Christians that think when it gets worse around us the church will grow and that God needs us to suffer in order to apprehend us. This hasn’t worked for Africa and its not the solution for America, humans do good when the original plan of God is at work: Peace, rest, love, life, goodness, fulfillment, these draw people into eternity more then destruction because they feel like eternity.
I like what Joe from my facebook friend status said: Jesus paid the price for the sins of the world and the Father is not imputing the world’s trespasses against them, why do some insist that the physical calamities our God’s judgments? Too many think God’s dealings with us are based on the Law, not on the grace of God in Christ. Or Bill Johnson: The insurance companies blame a lot of bad things on a good God.
7) You are part of the solution that the world is waiting for….Romans 8 says the whole earth is groaning that sons of God would be revealed because what happened when Jesus came? He brought the potential to restore all things. He started His whole ministry with Luke 4:18 which was to bring GOOD NEWS! Wow what a concept that we are supposed to bring good news even in the day of adversity like He was in…..it was a bad day when He came but He showed a GOOD God!
I love you guys and I love my city. I am here for my city when it is doing well or when it is suffering like right now……LA is at a terrible crises of hunger, 20% child homelessness, 10,000 slaves, 80,000 homeless adults, 2000 people being released from prison every night, 18% unemployment, and we have many other problems. An Earthquake is not going to bring revival, we are. We want to stand with our city in the day of adversity and love our city, not pull away and hoard resources because of weird prophetic perspectives that come from bad theology. Any word that makes you feel separate from the city you live in is not from the heart of God.
Lots of love
i love this photo from 911 because it was such a picture of these champion men & woman risking all to save lives
Tags: bill johnson, church planting, EXPRESSION58, global legacy, hollywood ministry, jennifer toledo, lance walnau, new church, revival alliance, shawn bolz
MANAGING OTHERS EXPECTATIONS:
I got an email from someone moving to LA. “I am so in love with LA and I know I am supposed to be part of what you are doing! I am completely dedicated and can’t wait to move out there! I have been waiting my whole life to impact the entertainment industry and now I want to come out and serve your team!”
I wrote a fun email back congratulating them for taking the risk but also being very practical making sure they had enough money to move out here and that they take the time to get to know what God is doing in our city not just with us because we are new and all their relational needs might not get met here since everyone lives so far a part and we only have five home groups at any given time.
They wrote back “No! You don’t understand! I know I am called to work with you! I can’t wait!”
Then they moved here and crashed in every expectation. They were disappointed that we weren’t more for them. They were disappointed that they couldn’t have more position and be paid to do it by us or by LA because GOD HAD CALLED THEM! In their mind it wasn’t fair after all and after a year they moved away writing me a letter that said that God had released them from LA and it was time to go somewhere else. Now multiply this by 20+ people (probably more like 50 I just haven’t had direct convo’s with all of them) and you will see some of what we have had to deal with.
Let me qualify that I am not sad or upset that it happened, they took a risk and it didn’t pay off for them but it is discouraging when someone gives you 100% passion in the start but doesn’t even persevere for more then 12 months….you can’t move to a city like LA and see any of your dreams happen without investing 10 years. There is a lot of entitlement in this generation that things are not worth working hard for. If it takes 30 years to get a gold watch and a pension in most jobs, its going to take 30 years to be paid back for your investment in something….and that just scares most people.
I am a conference speaker so all that I have to do is talk about what God is doing in Hollywood and anyone who doesn’t have satisfaction or clear direction who is looking for excitement and calling ends up “hearing from God” that they are called to move to California. I have to be very careful in this, because although we want everyone to move here (its an amazing city) you have to move here with wisdom, and a long term goal that doesn’t involve using the identity of those around you to find fulfillment (that is one of the problem areas of Hollywood itself).
BELIEVING IN WHAT YOU BELIEVE IN WHOLE HEARTEDLY MANAGES OTHERS EXPECTATIONS
On a positive note: How you believe what you believe and how you are vulnerable in the process will really be the powerful force of managing peoples expectations around you. Your belief in something is magnetic to those who trust or love you. Your belief multiplies in them.
You will never properly manage your critics opinions of you so don’t try (let God and the good work be defenders) but you sure can help lead those who are part of you be powerful in their expectations towards you.
I have tried to set a real culture of grace to our leaders and our ministry. I have said things to those who are involved statements like:
* Hey guys none of us have ever lead on this level before so we need lots of grace and years of development so we need you to double your adaptability and flexibility if you are going to make a commitment to us. Not just your grace for me, but grace for other areas or departments that may not be connected to you right now.
* When you start to come to a pioneering work like this you have to take a risk to believe in us and our leadership, but we also have to take risks with you as well! Lets be gracious risk takers.
* Many other ministries that have been established for 10+ years have fully developed departments and internal structure, you are part of the pioneering group that establishes that for everyone who comes after you (its not here yet). That means there will be tension and obvious sight to what ISN’T happening, but lets be constructive and empowered to believe we have a voice to what needs to happen but with our focus trained on what IS happening so we can celebrate who we are not who we are not yet.
* What if we never become a better version of the last church you were in, can we be a new thing instead of a recreation of a really good experience you have already had.
In other words, we have to have emotional intelligence and love for the people God is bringing us through our communication.
PEOPLE WILL BE CRITICAL, THEY CAN’T HELP IT
You can please some people some of the time….but sometimes its going to just feel like everyone is disappointed…it won’t be true but it will feel that way. It seems when one person is energized about something negative then this energy multiplies.
You do have a great defenses to this though, you need to develop a culture in your leadership team and in your people of belief and support. That means when someone is being critical you can ask them if its a critical analysis that is meant to help you or is it critical mindset based in missed expectations.
THE OLD CRITICAL ANALYSIS
If they have a critical analysis then its great because you will hear something that is good to be a listener too. It doesn’t mean you will want to hear it in the timing it is being given but it is worth listening too and can sometimes be a gift. Critical information never comes at the most opportune time, until you train yourself to hear it.
Repeat after me: Negative information does not have to bring negative conversations.
This is one area that I have failed in so many times when we were first starting because I get triggered by people I hadn’t developed enough relationship with yet, when they tell me what was not working but offer no solutions. I had to learn, this it is OK as long as their heart is for us its OK to see what needs to happen…but you can’t spend a lot of time here.
Example: So many people have told us our website sucks. You know what? The Bible School student who did it gave us a steal at 500 dollars and it was worth every penny! He did a good job. Since then we just haven’t had the 10,000 it takes to build a world class website but we are working towards it, we even have project managers who have developed the design ideas and are looking how to build it in phases but its been a rough time moving to LA in the middle of recession…see how easy it is to want to defend what is not happening yet? Its exhausting though….
The reality is its OK to just hear someone without having to feel responsible to them in a wrong way. They don’t need to know the back story or why its not working!
SOLUTION: They just need to know that you hear them and that you have a plan that eventually it will change. That is very powerful for people, to be heard and have agreement from you even if you have to set their expectation on your priorities for projects like this.
NEGATIVE WRONG PROCESSING
It might be a negative wrong processing that gets brought to you.
Example that is E58 specific: One thing my team has had to deal with is the fact that many people are upset that I am single. “Pastors can’t be single! Not senior pastors!” is the sentiment they are given. They are asked if I am “OK” meaning I might have a religious weird cultish perspective, I might be struggling with homosexuality, I might be celibate, I might be deformed…we have had all the questions come. People have a hard time following what they don’t understand so we do have to qualify from time to time that being single is not wrong and that I personally am pure and not deformed and that I am not celibate forever and Jesus was single when He lead the church.
Sometimes negative questions deserve a response, sometimes the way we are pioneering is so different that we spend more time qualifying… but we can not move into defensiveness or we can’t spend our good energy on high maintenance misunderstandings.
I use this as an example because there will always be something that your leaders will find themselves helping to explain or qualifying in reaction to you or what you are all doing together. The key here is to have simple answers that defuse negativity, but not to spend any time in arguing or in intensity. Remember negative people feed off of negativity so if you argue they win. Sometimes people are just going through something with their friends, family, job, hormones, etc and they need to know they are safe even when they are ugly so they get energized. Part of being their family is loving them through this and helping to be a safe place again for them to de-energize.
FEELING SAFE HELPS TO MANAGE EXPECTATIONS
I have had a few people tell me some really negative reasons why they didn’t feel safe with us as a ministry. The problem was I couldn’t de-energize them and I couldn’t fix in the short term the areas of the ministry they wanted me to focus on because it just didn’t line up with our priorities or our vision for the order in which we were going to build so you know what? I had to release them. For us as a ministry it was telling them “There are amazing churches in this city that are fully developed and it sounds like you really need something that is already established. We are still building and our process is going to be slow in some of the areas that you need a fast moving system just because we are moving forward so many things at once.”
To people that get mad at us for not being all they want us to be yet, I put 2 fingers up and say “We are only just over 2 years old as a church. 2, do you see that? 2 years….JK I don’t say that part.”
Of course some of those people want their 2 year old child to go to college but for the most part people come back into reality and go….”Oh yeah, I should give them a break and walk out the days of small beginnings with them….that’s what that scripture is about.”
DON’T LET OTHERS EXPECTATIONS MANAGE YOU
The oldest pitfall in the book for pioneers? Reacting to new or uncommitted peoples expectations and trying to be a people pleaser rather then building with your family and team. Let me tell you a quick story:
When I lived in the South (yes I lived there) I realized how much people put an emphasis on appearance in my neighborhood. There was one lady whose son went through a hip hop phase (who was totally a white baby faced sweet kid). She was so embarrassed that one day when they were over at my house as a family she told him that he couldn’t wear his new hip hop jacket outside because “What would the neighbors think?”
I took her aside and said “Sweetie pie (in a great southern style) you care more about what the neighbors think then what your boy thinks. He will only go through this phase once, and its precious because he is becoming an individual exploring his identity in a totally pure (and one day the photos will show) hysterical way. Enjoy this! Don’t let pressure from what people think rob him from exploring!”
She realized she was caring more for her neighbors feelings then her son and it was learned behavior. She decided to have fun with his phase and laugh it off. He is now the popular star Eminem. Just kidding!
We often do this, we care more for what a few people who are not really involved or committed or central to what we are doing think at the expense of what those who really matter think.
Some of us as we pioneer have learned behavior on how to bend towards people who aren’t even really committed to us in our community we are building because they are tithers, or they are important in the community, or they are older, or whatever but you know what? Love the child God gave you and the team and family he gave you first. Then apply the strength of this love to the community around you and you know what will happen? You will develop good boundaries!
There is a lot to figure out with expectations when you are starting, but you know what? Enjoy it even when people who are starting to
come along side you are upset or counting the cost because when they get through whatever they are going through (with your love and support I hope) you will have really committed people who have paid a price.
Lots of love from the red zone of Los Angeles
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