Saturday, December 30, 2006

"Rewind and Fast Forward of 2006"

I have a couple of things before I start my blog. One is I am sorry for those of you came on last week looking for a new thought by me. Again I am sorry I was busy with Christmas and the power went off, at my house for a bit 2 hours. Second is I am changing the mean of lol which means laugh out loud to lots of laughs. I want to change this because it would be funny and also because no one laughs out loud when they lol on msn or yahoo or whatever you use.

As we are coming up to the new year. Tomorrow night is New Years Eve in case you did not know, or just forgot.

When we come to this time of year, we look back over the year that was, the things we did, the fun we had, the lol we had. This year has been an awesome year for me. I did a lot I do not even know were to start. I finished another year of school. I saw changes in my own life. I saw God keep doing things in my life, and I saw myself grow in different areas.
I saw a lot of things happen at Rainstorm at the start of 2006, we started a road trip. Not a real road trip this was just the wording we use to talk about what we were doing. We saw people join us on this trip. We saw people leave on their own road trip of life. It has been a great year. We saw young people start relationships with God. We saw young people keep growing in their relationship with God. We saw young people get baptized which was sweet. It was awesome to play a part of this. (There is so much to write here but I do not want to have to long of a blog)

We have add something new to the road trip this year. We added "Share Moments. Share Life" I talked about it in my last thought.

Now I have some questions to get you thinking about your year:

What will you remember from 2006?
What was your best moment of 2006?
What was the worst moment of 2006?
What did God do for you in 2006?
What did He teach you in 2006?
What will you 2007 like look for you?
What things will you do?
What things do you have planed to do?

I can not wait to see what 2007 will look like. I am starting 2007 off with a bang. I am going to Guatemala in February. I fly out on the 14th and return on the 26th. This is a missions trip. This is my first missions trip and also my first time in a plane.

Howden Matt Howden

Saturday, December 16, 2006

"Moments that define our lives"

This is a talk I did last night at Rainstorm. It had to do with moments that define our lives. I have had a few moments this year that has help to define my life. We talk about about two stories in the Bible that talk about define moments for the People of God. These two stories are found in Exodus 14:1-18 and Joshua 3:13-4:7; 21-24. These two stories talk about the People of God, crossing over bodies of water on dry ground. These were moments that defined their lives. We take a few these of out those stories. God does moments in peoples lives to show His Glory, God is about moving us from moment to moment and He does not want us to get "stuck in a moment." This is a song by U2 and the line says "You've got stuck in a moment
And now you can't get out of it"
God wants us to remember the moments we have with Him and when He does stuff in our lives. In the second story we read He told the people to take 12 stones out of the Jordan river to set up a permanent memorial. He wanted the people to be able to remember what He did for them. I loved to parts in read in this story yesterday. The First is:"Select twelve men from the people, a man from each tribe, and tell them, 'From right here, the middle of the Jordan where the feet of the priests are standing firm, take twelve stones. Carry them across with you and set them down in the place where you camp tonight.'" (Joshua 4:2-3 MSG) He wanted them to set the stones up where they camped that night, He did not say take them with you and set up each time. It wanted them to keep going and get ready for the next thing He was going to do, but He did want them to remember it. Some times when we have a moment we just stop and want to stay at that moment and never move past that moment. We can remember it but do not get stuck in the moment.
The second is: "In the days to come, when your children ask their fathers, 'What are these stones doing here?' tell your children this: 'Israel crossed over this Jordan on dry ground.'
"Yes, GOD, your God, dried up the Jordan's waters for you until you had crossed, just as GOD, your God, did at the Red Sea, which had dried up before us until we had crossed. This was so that everybody on earth would recognize how strong GOD's rescuing hand is and so that you would hold GOD in solemn reverence always."
He also wanted the stones to be set up so the next generation would know what He did for His people. I think that is so awesome. We do not go around setting up stones like this anymore it might be a bit different to see that. But we take pictures or make videos of the moments we have. Then we can share moments with people. Kodak has a line it is "Share Moments. Share Life."

In January 2006, at Rainstorm we start a road trip to see young people start relationships with God or get back to a relationship with God. We saw this happen. In 2007 we are going to keep going on the road trip and we are adding "Share Moments. Share Life" This idea came out of something that was said by one of the young people that started a relationship with God in October. We were sitting in the office on Friday after Acquire the Fire and she said I wish I had camera to take a picture to remember this day or something like that I do not remember it word for word.
What have been "moments that have defined your life? This year or past year?
Have you handle on to that moment that you ended up missing other moments?
In another blog I will talk about those moments from 2006, that happened at Rainstorm and in my personal life.
We have seen God to some great things this year at Rainstorm, and we know we can remember the moments and talk about with other young people so they know what God has done in the group, but we know that God is moving us to another moment in 2007. The first talk I am giving in January 2007 is going to be entitled "Why can't things be like they were before?"
Let your comments about "moments that have defined your life"

Saturday, December 09, 2006

"For Kids Only"

Today I was part of an event. Know as "For Kids Only", I was on the team that helped plan this event. My role was to bring the elves and also get the elves. I was able to get the best group of elves ever. They did a great job. What was this event you ask? Let me tell you. It was an event put on by a few churches in the Dundas area. It was done at St. Paul's a church in Dundas. We had children come in from the Salvation army. These kids were between the ages of 5 to 12. They were going to pick out Christmas gifts for their mom or dad, or both. It was a long day for me on my feet, and I also had Rainstorm the night before and we had a coffee house. So I am tried, but it was worth it. To see this kids come out of the gift store and walk over to where their parent or parents, and see the look on both the kids face and the parents face. I did not know what to say sometimes. I would like to say a big huge thanks to all the elves you came out help. When doing this event today I was drawn to a verse in the Bible. The first is found in Matthew 19:13-14 "One day children were brought to Jesus in the hope that he would lay hands on them and pray over them. The disciples shooed them off. But Jesus intervened: "Let the children alone, don't prevent them from coming to me. God's kingdom is made up of people like these."" (MSG)
Remember that each one of those kids we helped today that God's kingdom is made of people like these children.
For some of these kids you made their Christmas by helping them pick of a gift for their parent(s). And you have played a part that down the road can help them start a relationship with God. But they will remember how nice the elves were to them and helped them with their Christmas as kids to give good gifts to their parent(s). You also meant the needs of people and Acts talks about that the sold what they had and meant the needs of people, so their was no needy among them. I just want to say thanks for all your hard work with the kids today. There is nothing great then meeting the need of someone who can not repay you. What will you do this Christmas to meet the needs of someone?
Christ came and gave us the best gift His life and we can repay for what He did.

Here is a picture of the elves.

Howden Matt Howden

Friday, December 01, 2006

"Freedom Speakers"

I would like to say thanks for taking the time to come to read my thoughts. I hope you get something out of them as you read them.
Well this Friday, at Rainstorm Youth Ministry I talked about sharing your story. We then gave the chance for someone to come up and share his story. This guy has been coming out for four months now. He had been in a relationship Christ for about four months. This Friday was his last week with us. The family that he lives with moving to B.C. first they are going to do some traveling down in the U.S.A. (that is not the reason for the picture, I will explain later) It has been a great honour to get to know this family, and they youth. They will be missed.
Before we had him come up and share his story. I just talked a bit about sharing your story. There was this verse in the Bible I came across as I reading someone else's blog this week. She had Psalms 107 down at the bottom of her blog. So I looked the verse up and I used verse 2. It says:

"All of you set free by God, tell the world!
Tell how he freed you from oppression" (Ps. 107:2 MSG)

When I read that this week I was like that is awesome we need to share that God has set us free, and we need to tell the world this. So the U.S.A has freedom fries and they have freedom fighters, we can be known as freedom speakers. People that go around telling the world that God has freedom them from different things and the relationship we have with Him. I want to be known as a freedom speaker what about you?

We have to say goodbye to this family this week. And this Sunday we are going to be baptising three from the family 2 girls and one guy. Not only we will be baptising these ones but also two more (one guy and one girl). It has been great getting to know this youth and young adults and seeing some of them start a relationship with God in the past few months, and seeing some of the continue with the relationship they have with Him. It is great to see these youth and young adults doing this, it is a honour to know these young people and to have been a part of this it have been awesome. So this Sunday I will be getting in a hot tub (much like this one)
and hear about their relationship with God and then I will get to dunk of the guys. I found out today it will be awesome, because the guys I am dunking, started coming out to Rainstorm when he was invited to Undertow, which is a faith-club I lead at a local high school in Dundas. He was then invited out to a event at Rainstorm a coffee house we did at the end of June. It started coming out on a week to week after that. He also attend Ignite our young adults small group. He then left and went to Ottawa to attend a school their. So we have not seen him since he left. We have talked to him on msn. It will be sweet to see him again. It is awesome to see when people start a relationship with God and you talk to them about it. After this guy left he sent a card to the church, the card was read by the pastor on Sunday morning during his talk. The guy said my name and the impact on had on his journey towards starting this relationship with God, and how me and another lead helped him with stuff about God. When I heard this I started crying. He talked about the impact Rainstorm had on his journey too. So this Friday at Rainstorm we celebrated that he is coming home to do this, and the other people that entered into a relationship with God the past few months. It is great to see when young people do this, and we at Rainstorm can fulfill our mission statement: To produce young people of passion - pursuing Christ!

Maybe you have read this and you say to yourself I have not started a relationship with God yet, that's cool each person is on a journey. I want you to know that if you have question feel free to email me and ask away.
If you are in a relationship with God but you it has broken down somewhere I would like to get together with you and talk about it, you can also email me.

Sorry for the blog being so long, I know the last time have been short. I want to try to keep them short so I am sorry. But I think you know why it is so long.

Howden Matt Howden