Dying to Live

Changing seasons have always fascinated me.  Each one has its uniqueness, as it brings newness to the earth just in time.  But what about fall and winter?  Do they bring new life to the world?  Or do they bring death?  The warmth of the sun goes away and blasts of cold blow in its place.  Fields of green turn gray and become lifeless for months.  Leaves turn brown and fall to the ground, only to become mulch on the forest floor.  Seeds fall from the branches and are buried deep in the dirt.  

Read More
Travis Runion
What is a "Real" man?

by Michael Webb

Growing up in a very small southern town in Georgia, being a man meant being tough.  Being a ‘real’ man meant being tough and knowing how to fix things, too.  And you better know how to hunt and fish or your man card would be tossed up in the air and have buck shot fired through it. 

Read More
Travis Runion
Let's Change the Game this Father's Day

by Travis Runion

Let me challenge you to do something different this Father’s Day. Rather than sitting back and waiting to receive the gifts, praise, and attention, why not spend a few moments yourself preparing some gifts and words of blessing for your kids?

Read More
Travis Runion
I hate to dance... but not this night.

by Mitchell Ellett

I love my daughter.  I love my daughter’s friends.  I love that they love to dance.  But I hate to dance…at least 364 days out of the year.  However, there is one night that I dust off my dress shoes, put on my sport coat and do my best not to pull a muscle or injure myself.  That night is the Daddy Daughter Dance. 

Read More
Travis Runion
Heavy Rain, Thieves, and Fortresses

by Jay Borck

I realized that this Men’s retreat was - more than anything - a time of reunion with my Father. There’s something about walking to breakfast in the morning without the responsibilities of the work day ahead.  And there were no shoes to tie; no stroller to park. There were faces I knew, and many that I didn’t. And they looked rested, relaxed for the first time in a long time. There was laughter. 

Read More
Travis Runion
Getting Unstuck: The Power of Movement & Community

“I just feel stuck, like I can’t move or grow spiritually. I don’t know what I need to do but I know I can’t stay here. I just know I need to move, so count me in.”

That was the response I got when I asked a friend at church if he wanted to join a Next Level group we were putting together. His response was similar to several others I invited. In all, 13 men made the commitment to meet together every Friday morning at 6:00 AM for 40 weeks…

Read More
Travis Runion
The Christmas Crazy Train

As wonderful as the Christmas season is, especially for followers of Christ, it doesn’t take much to lose sight of what the world is actually stopping to celebrate. It starts at Walmart and Home Depot, the day before Halloween, with aisles of well-lit trees, inflatable Santa’s and elves, and fake snow falling. We begin to make our lists. What to decorate, what to bake, what gifts to buy the kids, and what family members are coming into town (...and why?). A good friend of mine calls it the “Christmas Crazy Train”. It’s a train that’s easy to ride and tough to get off of. And just about everyone we know is on it, so why not ride too?

Read More
Ed Sweeny
A Truly Hallowed Evening

I’m not a big fan of scary costumes or creepy decorations, but I do love it when October 31 comes around every year.  For many reasons actually.  I love the cool, crisp evening air that always finds it way to my hometown by late October.  I love pumpkin pie, hot apple cider, and high school football playoffs.  And I love it when giant bags full of chocolate find their way onto my living room floor. 

But the thing I love most about Halloween night is a tradition that my family started a few years ago.  A big front yard bonfire. 

Read More
Ed Sweeny
Before the Storm

I was at Walmart today buying a few essentials in preparation for the hurricane that’s forecast to hit our South Carolina coast this weekend.  I don’t live on the coast, but this storm is a big one, and we’ve been told statewide to prepare for significant wind, major flooding, and crippling power outages. 

Read More
Ed Sweeny