About Joel

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So far Joel has created 187 blog entries.

A Country Boy From Assisi, A Mountain Boy From Arizona

By |2019-10-04T20:14:33+00:00October 4th, 2019|francis of assisi|

I remember when I was introduced to a person who has been revolutionary to my faith. Yes, obviously Jesus is the most revolutionary, but I am talking about somebody who inspired me to take a look at my life and ask, "How am I following Jesus? Really following Him." This person is St. Francis of Assisi. I remember being in a university choral class when we were given a piece to sing called "Servants of Peace" by James Quinn and K. Lee Scott, which was based on the Prayer of Peace which has been attributed to the Franciscan tradition (though it is unlikely that Francis was the author). Regardless, where the prayer came from, it definitely reflects Francis' life [...]

Worshiping God When You Don’t Feel Like It [Audio]

By |2019-09-13T17:37:02+00:00September 13th, 2019|Audio, discipleship, Spiritual Disciplines, Spiritual Formation, Worship, Worship Leading|

Bless the Lord, O my soul,     and all that is within me,     bless His holy name! David (shepherd boy turned king), Psalm 103:1 One thing that has been a part of my spiritual and character formation has been worship. Yes, worship is a response to what God has done, but what happens when worship (or rather, creating the environment for worship to happen) is your job? Through the week to week routine of it all, as well as in the times where you are walking through personal battles or frustrations of your own, there is temptation to slip into autopilot, in a way that does not engage the heart (personally). One thing I've found, however, is [...]

In The Storm: What Do You Say? [Audio]

By |2019-07-26T00:30:20+00:00July 26th, 2019|A Prelude To Tomorrow, Music, Prayers and Blessings, Spiritual Disciplines, Spiritual Formation|

"Going through a storm doesn't mean that we're just waiting for it to go away, but as followers of Jesus, it is looking for Jesus in the storm. And saying, 'I think I see Jesus [on the water], and if that's Jesus, I would rather be with Him, out there in this mess, than in this boat relying on my own ingenuity and resources.' Even though we might be afraid and fearful, He is inviting us into a deeper experience of trust in Him." - my sermon, "This is My Story: In the Storm" For most of my songs, I can recall the moments when I wrote, scribbled, labored, or arm wrestled the lyrics and melodies [...]

What A Friend: a song for community

By |2019-06-13T15:11:07+00:00June 13th, 2019|Christian Music, Christianity, Jesus Shaped Community, Music, Worship, Worship Leading|

Over the years, I've heard songwriters and/or musicians say things to the effect of, "I wish I wrote that song." And actually, I'm sure I've said that at some point - but this one, I'm glad was penned by my friend Bruce. I remember when I first heard it. It was shortly after my wife and I walked through a tragic time in our lives. It was one of those times where it felt as if the world was crashing down, and nothing felt safe. Bruce and his wife Lois were trusted friends who walked through that time with us. We were left with many questions and very few answers, and through that messy time I [...]