Special Announcement

For Ava’s last gift on Christmas morning, we wrote her a note to tell her something special.
Here’s the video of how it went down…

So a little back story…
We wrestled with how to tell Ava for a week and a half.
We knew we wanted it to be special and at the same time value her as our oldest child.
At every turn we want her to know how loved and cherished she is to us.
Though the family grows, no one is being replaced or forgotten.
All are unique and special and whatever happens to one of us in this family, happens to all of us.
Both the good and the bad… we face it together.

So the night before Christmas I wrote her a note and we included the ultrasound pic.
We wrapped it up and made it the last gift for her to open Christmas morning.

The look on her face was worth it and the tears of joy in the room made Christmas day all the more amazing!

We are so grateful and are trusting God in the days ahead.
We’ve been through the highs and lows of pregnancy,
but seeing how this is kind of a miracle (if miracle’s have “kind of” as a category)
We are hopeful for that special day to come this August!

We believe in prayer and would be grateful for yours for us and this baby!

Thanks so much and we’ll being keeping updates here at the blog
So stay tuned!

– CASE

PS: Don’t make fun of my drawing… it was late and my fingers were tired from wrapping.

Note to ava

Christmas in Bevelton

 *Link to download song for free at bottom

Yesterday – Dec 22 – we showed a unique video to kick off the Christmas service at all the church’s of  North Point Community Church
(NorthPoint, Buckhead, Brownsbridge, Watermark, Gwinnett) – each campus executed it differently but the video/song was the same.

The video pretty much explains it all, but in short, we were given pages of material on Christmas from the perspective of Children, and then charged with writing a song that would be stuck in everyone’s head as well as meet the expectations that come with the excellence of NP openers at Christmas time!

No pressure.   Pshhh…. lots of pressure!!!

I’ll be honest, this was one of the most fun and yet, most challenging songs I’ve ever been a part of writing.
However, thanks to working with these sick, talented dudes – Jared Hamilton, Matt Melton & Matt Adkins – we came up with a song and rallied the troops to pull it off… and from what I’ve heard, I think it went over well.

The long day in the studio was amazing and in the end, I’m grateful to be a part of such a creative team!
(special thanks to the mega talented Trey Roth for that epic day in the studio)

Hope you enjoy it, cause after all… it is Christmas in Bevelton, so make it a merry one!!!

– CASE

NOTE: Download the song for FREE (and share it!)
http://northpoint.org/bevelton

WARNING: It will potentially be stuck in you and your kid’s heads for a LONG time 😉

LYRICS:

Verse 1:
100 years old and the cookies keep him alive
I tell Santa Clause what I like, and I like, and I like
Silver and gold and merchandise
Blue underwear that fits to tight
Can you smell it? I think I can smell it

Verse 2:
An angel came down but I can’t remember the rest
Mary knew she was pregnant cause that’s what the doctor said
And Jesus is bigger then Santa Claus
Wrapped in jeans, He was born in a barn
Can you smell it? I think I can smell it

In lethlahem… or wait… was it Methlahem?!?

Chorus 1:
It’s Christmas, in a town called Bevelton
It’s Christmas, they didn’t have no Hampton Inn
Smellin animal’s business, with candy canes and shepermen
There’s a stranger, in a manger, power ranger
It’s Christmas in Bevelton

Verse 3:
Reindeers and mammals, Platypus lay the eggs
Scorpions in the barn with tiny little legs
I think there were ligers! Were there ligers back then?
Yeah there were ligers back then! There were ligers back then!

2 Buzzin bees, a snake and a pig
Of all the animals: What did the ox say?
Moo moo moo we haw
we haw haw moo moo
grrr grrr Baaaahhhhhhhhhhh

Chorus 2:
It’s Christmas, in a town called Bevelton
It’s Christmas, they didn’t have no Hampton Inn
Smellin animal’s business, with candy canes and shepermen
Because of Jesus and the presents and my ELF comes!!!

If you can’t learn nothing then you don’t know nothin…. nothin…

RAP:
I just wanna leave Joseph we’re havin a baby
Mary I know your pregnant but you’re drivin me crazy
All the hotels and the motels and the houses are full
The wise men brought crowns, ducks and pencils
He was wrapped in wrapping paper that wasn’t invented yet
He was wrapped in jeans, in a haystack with a blanket
He was born in a manger y’all in a manger y’all… born in a manger y’all

Bridge:
Last year all I got was blue underwear
And I still smell the cheese in Santa’s beard
So all around the world
Let our noses burn….

Chorus: (Key change 1)
It’s Christmas, in a town called Bevelton
It’s Christmas, they didn’t have no Hampton Inn
Smellin animal’s business, with candy canes and shepermen
There’s a stranger, in a manger, power ranger
It’s Christmas in Bevelton

Chorus: (key change 2)
It’s Christmas, in a town called Bevelton
It’s Christmas, they didn’t have no Hampton Inn
Smellin animal’s business, with candy canes and shepermen
Because of Jesus and the present and my ELF comes!!!!!!!!!!
It’s Christmas in Bevelton

*Special thanks to Andy Stanley for the closing piano 😉

Darnell Family – Celebrating Uncle Skot

Darnell

Today we celebrated the life of Uncle Skot Darnell.

I was blessed with a lot of uncles and aunts,
but Skot was a mold breaker.
The youngest of all 6 of them on my dad’s side.
He was an astounding artist, sketching life like drawings of anything.
Passionate about Atlanta sports, David Letterman show,
annual family football games, well made movies and… us, his family.
He was a big fan of us all.
He never married or had kids, but was RICH in nieces and nephews.

For the last several years as we watched his health degrade,
his faith never wavered.
His desire to glorify God through his cancer was unrivaled, up until
this past Sunday when I watched him take his last breath.

In those last few moments, some might think cancer beat him and death won.
But in that moment, we held to the hope that 1 Corinthians 15 tells us:
“Death has been swallowed up in Victory!
Where Oh death is your victory?
Where Oh death is your sting?”

Bringing us to today…
Today was a journey down memory lane with so many family members,
reflecting on the laughs and tears that come with loving someone so much!

I arrived with a heavy heart, but left feeling Grateful.
Grateful for such a rich heritage in our family… the Darnell Family.
From music and art to a deep rooted trust and hope in Jesus.
That He is the author and finisher of our faith.
He is our joy and peace beyond understanding, that all the Christmas songs celebrate.
And the very life that filled Skot in that next moment, claiming the victory over death!

We know with full confidence that Skot is breathing the air of heaven,
in a cancer free body, experiencing with new eyes a whole new reality!
A reality we are told in 2 Cor 2:9 that,
“No eye has seen, no ear has heard
and no mind can conceive, what God
has prepared for those that love Him”

And Skot loved Jesus!!

God, thank you for uncle’s like Skot.
Thank you for the reminder here at Christmas time
of why the gift of your son means so much!
And thank you for the time to reflect with a full heart
on what matters most and that while we’re alive,
we still have a little more time to love.

Screen Shot 2013-12-20 at 7.09.39 PM  1506727_10152154197219789_1528000513_n  

*The Music notes on the tombstone are to the song “That Glad Reunion Day”
This is where my great grandmother and many, many others are buried in Talking Rock, GA.

Stay Focused

Focus

When I took this pic, my iPhone was struggling to focus on the right thing.
Due to the lights and depth of people, it took several attempts with most looking like this one.

Leading worship comes with the same challenge:
keeping the right thing in focus at the right time.

Multiple services of the same thing can take it’s toll on your mind and keeping the “right thing” in focus can get more challenging as you grow more tired. Though we are given a microphone to project our voices and make what we are singing/saying louder… In the end, it’s not about my voice.
The lights and camera are aimed at us on stage, but it’s not about us…
It’s about God and people.
Not to impress God, cause we can’t (have you seen the stars lately?)
And not to impress people, but to connect them.
This challenge exist for everyone in whatever spotlight they are given, “who will I make famous?”
When the lights and camera are off, who will have benefited from the attention I was given in my time in the spotlight?

May our aim be to keep people in focus.
May we leverage our given stages to serve others and in doing so know we are serving God.

Love God. Love People. Stay Focused.