Archive for June, 2008


video of the camping trip

June 30, 2008

Macy Trillium trip June 08 from Jay McKenney on Vimeo.


Camping with Macy

June 28, 2008

Macy and I decided to take a spur of the moment camping trip yesterday. 

We went to one of my favorite spots in Oregon, Trillium lake.  The scenery there is literally breath taking.

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Let me just say first off, we had a BLAST!!! Macy is SO fun to camp with.   And holy cow did she catch a lot of fish.  Many of them all by herself!  All I did was cast it out there, she waited till she got a bite, pulled up, and reeled some of them all the way, it was awesome! She caught over 10 fish!  That’s a fish she caught in the grassy reeds, you might not be able to see it.


One thing I discovered, is that Macy HATES bugs.  I mean despises mosquitoes, ants, gnats and the like.  Often she was engaged in conversation with them, telling them how much she did not like them, and asking them to please GO AWAY!

At night around the campfire she was SO precious.  She kept saying that this was so peaceful and that she was so happy to be with me.  We made smores and stared into the fire.  We read Prince Caspian in our tent.  Right before she drifted off she asked me, "Daddy, could a bear come and kill us?"  I’ve been camping all my life, but not with Macy alone like that.  Let’s just say I didn’t sleep much last night.  All night long I was plotting what I would do to protect Macy in the event a bear or mountain lion made its way into our camp.  When I drifted off to sleep now and then, I dreamed about bears.

We both woke up at about 2:00 am.  We had windows in the top of our tent, and the stars were insane.  Macy took one look and sad, "Daddy, its DAZZLING!"  It truly was.

I think Macy is hooked on camping, and fishing, but still hates bugs.  I can’t wait until Ava is old enough to take on this trip.

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My brother Mike

June 26, 2008


This is my brother Mike.  He’s a stud.  I remember when I had abs like that.  I had just turned 5 and my metabolism was still really active. 

Mike lives in Georgia, he is a firefighter there.  I miss him terribly.  There is a chance he may be coming to visit the family with his wife in a week or two, I so hope he does.  I have never met his wife pictured below.

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My brother is funny, real, and a blast to be around.  We used to try to weight lift together and we would end up getting so frustated because we just kept laughing.  He is the kind of guy that when you meet you want to be counted as his friend.   He has a heart for Jesus, and talks about Him naturally. 

I could tell you endless stories of Mike and I growing up.  I’ll tell you one. Since we’re close to the 4th of July this is sorta relevant.

I’m not sure what the firecracker of choice was, all I remember is, Mike was way too close and it was way too powerful.  The amazing thing was, that the extent of the damage was mainly limited to taking off his eyebrows.  Which I’m pretty sure at that time was more scary to Mike than anything else.  So, be careful everyone this year with your fireworks, and be willing to part with some facial hair. 

Love you Mike.  Praying you can get here.



June 25, 2008

A firewall is a device or set of devices configured to permit, deny, encrypt, or proxy all computer traffic between different security domains based upon a set of rules and other criteria. (Wikipedia)

Michael Sainz heads up the IT department at Sunset. He is my friend, and he is a security nut. He is constantly safeguarding and protecting the flow of information and the infrastructure of our network from threats on the outside and inside as well. Routinely changing passwords, carefully scrutinized computer privileges, and the ever stronger firewall are par for the course around here. I used to think he was over protective, but Mike knows much better than I how vulnerable we are, and what kind of commitment it takes to preserve a functional work place. And it’s not just the monster virus he is trying to avoid, but it’s also all the little threats, like spyware, hackers etc, that over time can be just as destructive.

Most thoughts in your head just happen on auto pilot. You aren’t even aware of them. You aren’t analyzing them. They just flow. They just happen. They are happening now. They pass freely, some from within, some from without, usually with unlimited access.

What is more valuable, the internal network of a church, or a human mind, your mind? Are you safeguarding it? Are you aware of the threats? Not just the big ones, but all the little threats that over time shape the way you are thinking even today? Have you set up a firewall at the doorway to your mind? Are you analyzing the thoughts from within that are worth keeping, or worth rejecting? The best firewall I know of for our minds is the Bible.

The Bible is a device configured (spoken) by God to help us know what to permit, deny, encrypt, or proxy all thought traffic between the world and the domain of our brain upon a set of rules and other criteria. (Jay’s morphing of Wikipedia)


Serves Up more recap

June 23, 2008

Here are some more highlights from me from our serves up day in Vernonia.

*My father-in-law Bob mowing the greater part of Vernonia for hours on end.

*The group that went going above and beyond and taking an impromptu collection to give to the pastor and his wife of the church we worked on.

*Watching Scott Resnick go to town with the paint roller on that church, he was an animal.

*Watching the Resnick kids jump in there and help and work hard like their mom and dad.

*Seeing that church transformed with fresh paint and hearing all the stories about how God has been providing for that congregation and community.

*Eating lunch with the 70 plus and remembering our goal to take to Vernonia was 40.

*Seeing the bathroom in the church that had two sit down toilets pretty much straight across from eachother, no walls, no barriers.  We got a good laugh out of that one.

Serving together was so so so fun.  It was really minimal effort on our part, but the impact on the town and that church  we worked on was huge, and will last far beyond the Saturday we gave up to make it happen.  It was addicting too, I can’t wait to do more in our community, with my Sunset family, and hopefully take Alli and Macy next time.


Serves up

June 20, 2008

I am excited for tomorrow!  So many people have signed up at Sunset to go out and serve our community that we had to find new jobs.  Over 400 people heading out to just serve outside our walls with a united front.  Can’t wait to see what God does with it, for the people we’re serving, for our community, and for His Kingdom!


young and old in the church

June 18, 2008

The following blog is more insight and things I am wrestling with from my time at the Arts Conference in Chicago last week.

I’m officially a tweener at this stage of my life.  Young people think I’m old, and old people think I’m young. Won’t be long before I’m no longer a tweener.

I’m learning a lot about things that younger people value in our society, and how different those values are than what you find in most churches.  Here are a few.

*Freedom.  Freedom of schedule, freedom of work flow.  Technology has changed everything when it comes to where you can work, when you can work, and how you can communicate.  Young people don’t know what it means to “wait till after work” to connect with someone.  Connection is seamless, always, and continuous, with everyone and from anywhere.  And this blew me away, most are past email!!  While we are still trying to catch some people up on using email, young people have moved on to texts, twitter etc, and many consider email to corporate and outdated.  

*Multi-tasking.  This one overlaps the above.  Its not that younger people are more muli-tasking oriented than previous generations, its that they have so much more to mulitask with!

*Permission granting.  If you look at companies like Google, Yahoo, Microsoft etc, you find a culture of permission granting.  They welcome ideas, change, and challenge to their way of thinking.  Microsoft encourages people manipulating there programs, hacking their defenses, or finding new applications for their programs, and they seize the opportunity to grow as a company and reach more people. 

This is a stark contrast to a permission withholding culture found in many churches.  The culture can be this if we’re not careful: We are not going to let you do anything, unless you come and ask, and then if we talk about it enough, we may let you do it.  This is not an attractive atmosphere for a young person to come be a part of. 

Why is this important to discuss?  Because ideally, we are family.  Ideally the church will be the whole family, with everyone having a seat around the dinner table.   We have to find ways for the young to respect and learn from the wisdom and experience of the old, and for the old to bless the energy and the innovation of the young. 

Tweeners like me are off the hook and have no responsibility whatsoever.  Just kidding.  Tweeners like me might be one of our best chances to try and pull both generations towards eachother, because we have a foot in both worlds. 


Being a leader is hard

June 17, 2008

*Because at my core I’m a people pleaser, still trying to learn that its God’s opinion of me that truly matters.

*Because making mistakes is part of the deal.

*Because the people you are serving become your family.

*Because staying engaged, energetic, and passionate is not a guarantee.

*Because people see your weaknesses.

I still feel called to be a leader.  I still have so much to learn.  I am so grateful to be at a place where people love me and have patience with me.  Without that being a leader would be a whole lot harder.


random twitter thought

June 16, 2008

I figured out what bothers me about twitter.  Now don’t get me wrong, I love twitter, love following my friends on it, connecting with them through it, and occasionally sending out a tweet of my own now and then.  I think my red flag with it, is the tendency to use it as a tool to make myself look better.  Meaning just twitter the cool stuff.  Again, not that that is wrong, but it leaves out all the authentic, not so cool stuff that can also make up a day, a week, or a month of my life.  Then again who wants to hear that stuff? 🙂 


Spiders and blessings

June 15, 2008

Tonight I went to spend father’s day with some of my family.  My mom and dad are house sitting at this awesome place out by Oxbow Park, and they had these flowers at their house that have these white spiders on it that catch bees with their arms, no web.  This is a picture of it, that little white spot is the spider, and it is chowing down on a bee it just caught. Pretty amazing!

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The book I am reading pictured to the left on my blog, Building Faith at Home, had a chapter on giving a blessing to your children every night.  I have been saying a blessing to Macy and Ava every night.  When I told Allison about it and what I was saying, she shared with me that she had been doing the same thing every night on her own for most of Ava’s life.  I love my wife! Tonight Macy came up to me right before bed and say "Daddy, can I have my blessing now?"  Too cool.  Here is what I say to her (and Ava) with all the meaning and passion I can.

"Macy, may the Lord continue to bless you and keep you, May the Lord continue to make His face shine on you and be gracious to you. May the Lord continue to look upon you with favor and give you peace."

"Macy may you be a dangerous Christ follower. In the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. I love you. Amen."

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