Day 1 takeaway:

Tomorrow officially starts CreativeMissions 2013. To say I am beyond excited is an extreme underestimate of the lack of sleep and the many carbonated beverages I have had to get me from North Carolina to Alaska.

Today was a breath-taking exploration of Anchorage, Girdwood and Whittier Alaska. Incredible views and amazing #CreativeMissions Instagram feeds are already capturing the beauty that our great creator, God, made in the last frontier of Alaska from the team on the ground.

As we prepare for the week ahead of us, we had a great social event today over pizza and got to hear from an Alaska church pastor. I am always in awe of the stories being told as we get the fortunate opportunity to interact with the pastors on the frontline and serving the local communities. Albany, New York; Northwest Arkansas; Anchorage, Alaska is going to be no different. We are partaking of helping these pastors share their stories with the masses (the connections we have within the “Creative Community”) and the real purpose behind why we continue to do CreativeMissions. The purpose and picture is far greater than us.

What was most influential today during our brief introduction to the city of Anchorage is the critical mission we need to have for the week ahead in properly assessing the needs of the churches. There is a critical question we need to ask to effectively serve these pastors, the churches, and the unchurched – “What is your Alaska story?” You know, there is an actual story behind why we do and why we do not choose to take time to talk with those we encounter on a day basis. I have been learning this more and more over the past 9 months of this journey that God has brought me and my family down; not what is my “Alaska story” but what story am I creating with my life, and more importantly what story am I sharing with those I encounter? The stories we will hear this week will be beyond effectively communicating via a blog or pictures … it is something that we will never sufficiently communicate although we will all do our best. Every member of this year’s team take our position serious and this blog post will just be 1 of over a dozen to be made this week.

I just want to quickly share with you 1 takeaway that I think sets the tone for the week adequately, as we sit here at the Puffin Inn over a cup of coffee and open journals, is the comment made by Pastor Brent Williams of True North Anchorage,

“If you reach this one city (Anchorage), you will reach an entire state.”

Wow; powerful, insightful and my motivation as I end this post and look forward toward worship tomorrow.