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Ted Meyer

Sunday, October 29, 2006 by Mike Lovato

Every youth pastor needs a Ted Meyer. Let me explain. Ted Meyer has a son, Josh, who's a Junior in our high school ministry. Ted's one of those guys who's just always SUPER encouraging. He's always telling me how great stuff in our ministry is and how I'm doing a great job. In fact, when I get down, I should just go talk to Ted for a few minutes and I'll be filled right back up. I love it. He's one of our ministry's biggest fans and he talks to people about it. That, in turn, helps the high school ministry build momentum and helps our reputation in both our church and our community.

So, who's your Ted Meyer?


Flying Solo

Saturday, October 28, 2006 by Mike Lovato

I'm a bachelor this weekend. Nicole's up in Fresno taking care of my mom who's recovering from surgery #2 from a torn Achilles tendon. So what did I do on day 1? Did I go to the beach? Did I go and spend as much time as I want to at Borders? Did I do all my studying for my Missions final on Monday? Nope....I spent most of my day in our home office playing SimCity 4. That was following a stint on Google Earth and looking up random facts on Wikipedia and stuff. I'm a nerd. I think I'm going to go grab some Starbucks since I haven't left the house since helping Nicole load the car this morning.


Our Team

Wednesday, October 25, 2006 by Mike Lovato

Let me tell you a little about our student ministries team.

Lucas Miller (jr. high pastor) - Lucas is from the thriving metropolis of Tehachapi, CA. He's a senior at CBU and can play the bagpipes. He like to shoot people with AirSoft guns.

Chris Davis (jr. high intern) - Chris was a student in our high school ministry until recently. He's now a freshman at CBU and is working with our jr. high ministry. He wears a lot of black t-shirts with some sort of band name on them. One of his big areas in our ministry is working with the worship team in jr. high.

Jon McWhorter
(high school associate) - Jon oversees our midweek program, leads our student band, does some other stuff, and currently leads worship at our 9:30 service for the whole church. He is busy. He is from Fresno. He's also an RA at CBU where he's a senior. He is the only person I've ever hired based on a recommendation from my mom. He likes to ride his bike like 800 miles at a time and is dating Whitney.

Ben Wahlman (high school intern) - Ben is from St. Louis and is a sophomore at CBU. I believe he is dating a different Whitney. He's also a new addition to our team and is really good at connecting with students relationally. He'll be overseeing our discipleship groups and doing some other random stuff.

That's it. We're also looking for a college ministry intern right now so hopefully that will fill the team out soon. I'm the only full-time guy at the moment, but it's great having several people on-board.


24 Trailer

by Mike Lovato

Ok, do yourself a favor right now and go watch the extended 24 trailer. I think this may be the most pre-season info they've ever given out. Ok, now go check it out. Seriously. Go.

Oh, and by the way, check out who the new president is!

24 Trailer

(SO to Corey Mann)



Monday, October 23, 2006 by Mike Lovato

I just found out a little while ago about a really cool opportunity that's opening up for me. I need to do some praying and thinking about it. I'll post more when a decision is made.

(No, I'm not leaving for a new church somewhere else).


Random Monday Morning Thoughts

by Mike Lovato

Sitting at Coffee Depot...sorting through my week...enjoying a raspberry mocha.

  • Ran into Jim and Laura Paulus- Introduced myself and I am known as "Brian's brother". That's fun when your little brother is the one who is known. That's ok because he got "Michael's brother" most of his life.
  • It was fun seeing a lot of our OC friends Friday night at Allison's LOST Birthday party. I miss them. A lot.
  • Had nothing for me to do with church last night....that's rare and it was nice to have some down time.
  • They're playing Jewel in here right now. Old Jewel, the good stuff. "Foolish Games" is on as I type this.
  • I think I might be more of a details person than I like to admit.
  • I think I might be more introverted than I like to admit.
  • I just upgraded my AOL Instant Messenger. I never really go on AIM anymore, except thought I would this morning to see if my brother was on.
  • Another Jewel song just started.....I don't think I know this one.
  • I've had more relaxed and peaceful moments in the last week than I've had in the last 6 months.
UPDATE: "Foolish Games" is on again......if I listen to much more Jewel I'm probably going to start getting all emotional and crying or something.


Blogs I Dig

Thursday, October 19, 2006 by Mike Lovato

Time for another installment of "Blogs I Dig." Today's blog I dig is none other than Josh Griffin. Josh does something at Saddleback Church and something else at Simply Youth Ministry. I have some ideas, but am not entirely sure anymore. Anyways, he's the man and posts A TON. Lots of good youth ministry stuff, lots of random stuff. He's also the creator of TheForce.net so all you Star Wars fans can enjoy that. Josh is one of those guys you just enjoy being around so do yourself a favor and enjoy being around his blog for a few minutes today.

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Almost Done

by Mike Lovato

I just discovered that my final exit course for seminary is being offered in a two-day format up in Mill Valley in January. I'm thinking about knocking it out then rather than in 6 classes here in the Spring. My only other thing to figure out is I have 1 random unit left to finish up. The plan was to do an independent study with my Spring prof down here. Now I'm going to see if he'll help me with doing that in January instead. I'm almost there!


I'm Back

Wednesday, October 18, 2006 by Mike Lovato

Back from Ohio....here's some of the highlights.

  • Time away from work was awesome to just be away
  • Didn't go on the computer for the whole trip (other than a Manatee exhibit at the Zoo)
  • Spend a day in the rain at the zoo
  • Fossil hunting - not too bad....it basically consists of laying on the ground and staring at tiny rocks
  • Lots of time with Nicole was super cool
  • Actual Fall weather
  • Actual trees changing colors
  • Visited Shaker Town in Kentucky
  • Heard lots of Southern accents in Kentucky....amazing how it changes when you head a couple hours south
  • Ate at a Churrascaria....if you've never done this you need to.....they just keep bringing meat around on these skewers until you tell them to stop. It's awesome.



Wednesday, October 11, 2006 by Mike Lovato

I'm sitting in my last small groups class right now. I think Erwin McManus might be teaching up in the Auditorium.....maybe I should cut out and head up there.


Fossil Hunting

Tuesday, October 10, 2006 by Mike Lovato

Jon reminded me that I need to mention fossil hunting.

So, I'm talking to my dad the other day and here is the basic conversation:

Dad: We'll leave Robin and Nicole to do their thing one day and you and I will go fossil hunting.
Me: Do you have fossil hunting tools?
Dad: I'll buy some little hammers. I have knee-high boots we can wear so we can go in the water. What's your shoe size?
Me: 10 and a half
Dad: Ok, good. These will fit. You know this entire area used to be an inland sea....

So I'm going fossil hunting....it'll be an adventure. This is the same man who a couple weeks flew my stepbrother from LA to meet in Arkansas to go diamond hunting in a muddy field.



Sunday, October 08, 2006 by Mike Lovato

It's time to slow down. On Thursday, we fly out to Ohio to visit my dad for a few days. I'm looking forward to it. I've lived in California my whole life, but there's something very intriguing and simple that I like about the Midwest. The pace feels slower. Stuff is more spread out. It's supposed to be freezing so that'll be an adventure. I've got a research paper for my missions class to turn in before I go and a couple other loose ends to tie up. The laptop will be staying at home on this trip and it's all about hanging out and relaxing.


The Unthinkable

by Mike Lovato

Tonight I did the unthinkable....I left a high school event early. We're at the point in our ministry where we're now staffed where it makes that possible and also where my ministry responsibilities make it necessary. Our senior pastor's wife asked me today if I felt like I'm burning the candle at both ends. Honestly, my pace lately has been unsustainable. It's usually been my goal to be out with church stuff no more than a couple nights a week. That part hasn't been too bad. But, school's also been keeping a decent amount of pressure on me. Friday night was my first night just completely at home with Nicole since the previous Tuesday (not the "three days before" Tuesday, but the "ten days before" Tuesday).

Anyways, back to my original thought....I'm not scared of leaving an event early because it'll fall apart. I trust Jon to totally take care of stuff. He's proven himself to be totally capable. I think I'm more scared because I have some sort of self-pressure to be there (and probably to feel needed).

So, I'm working on all this still. I know that I have total people-pleasing tendencies. I know that I tend to take on too much. I know that I'm very driven to "succeed" and don't want to settle for second best.

Reality - at this point in our ministry if I don't release ministry and let some stuff go, we'll bottleneck and I'll burn out. My friend Josh has blogged about the whole burn-out thing that he's been experiencing.....reality is I'm probably just a couple steps away from there if I don't make some changes.


Midweek At a Glance

Thursday, October 05, 2006 by Mike Lovato

Series: Developing HABITS That Will Change Your Life
Message: Hanging Out With God
Game: Average. Table game from the HABITS super-series from Simply Youth Ministry.
Music: Average. Songs: Hallelujah (Your Love is Amazing), Your Grace is Enough, God of Wonders, Sit With You, Let Everything That Has Breath
Message Length: 30-ishminutes
Message Quality: Average. I felt pretty good about it going in, but the crowd was fairly chatty.
Volunteer Interaction: Below Average.
Student Response: Below Average. I guess there's some that responded well, but a handful that were super chatty during the talk and at least one girl that looked like she was at the dentist getting a cavity filled.
Attendance: Average.
1st Time Guests: None that I know of....maybe 1, but I think I'd seen him.

Decent night. I almost said something about the talking from the stage which I rarely do. I pulled out the "shhh" which I hate and me standing silent a couple times. We need to help some of our adult leaders know it's ok to tell the student near them to shut it (but in nicer words) sometimes.


Free Dinner

Wednesday, October 04, 2006 by Mike Lovato

I pulled into the In-n-Out drive-thru tonight and found myself right behind Jon and Ben. Jon is our newly promoted high school associate and Ben is our new high school intern. So I called Jon and we talked on the cell phone mere yards away from each other. Best part - Ben paid for mine and Nicole's dinner too when they pulled up to the window.....he may have gotten more than he bargained for since Nicole wasn't in the car. Anyways, thanks, Ben....I owe you $10.25 sometime.



by Mike Lovato

Dear East Coast Bloggers,
Please refrain from blogging about LOST and other TV shows until those of us on the West Coast have had a chance to see them. We would like to discover any new surprises ourselves.
Mike Lovato

- I almost had some stuff ruined for me as I checked blogs. Thanks, Corey Mann. Ok, just a few more minutes now until we start LOST on the DVR.


Catalyst Bloggers

by Mike Lovato

Here's a list of people I know will be blogging from Catalyst. I'll update from time to time as I find more people.

Lucas Miller
Ben Arment
Mark Batterson
David Trotter


Small Groups

Tuesday, October 03, 2006 by Mike Lovato

I'm in this small groups class this semester and tonight I'm going to observe a small group from The Grove. It'll be interesting. It's one thing to check out a church service from an outsider's point of view, but it's quite another to check out something at a person's house who you do not know. But in a real sense, that's the reality for a lot of people who are looking to plug into a group. Experiential learning tonight, guys, experiential learning.



Mike Lovato is a follower of Jesus, husband to Nicole, daddy to Addison, and pastor to teenagers in Riverside, CA.


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