Saturday, January 31, 2004

Well I'm all done with my message for tomorrow. I need to go over it a bit. I really want to have a good feel for it and know it backwards and forwards, because this is more of a vision message. Anyways - I am a bit nervous about speaking tomorrow, because I can't use my body a lot tomorrow because of the FALL. And I aint Adam. What? :)

Anyways - I learned a ton studying for this and look forward to someday sharing some of the things that I came across. If you would like to go to a great site that gives you some great background info. on the context of the Bible go to: follow the rabbi. Link to the left.

I had a great encouraging word today from a Watermarker I meet with. He shared some things he's been learning in the Bible and was encouraging me to use this time of sickness or injury to grow in my walk with God and not to be discouraged. To see this as a time of testing to grow my faith and perseverance.

Anyways - I want to be faithful. It is just hard when you can't do some of the most basic things to help around the house, but we've had great support and I'm learning to accept help. THAT IS A MIRACLE!

The Dutchman,
sd

Friday, January 30, 2004

Are you a Watermarker living out the river? Have a story to tell?
-----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Post a story in the Watermark Stories section!

Go to http://www.blogspot.com
Enter the username: watermarkstories
Enter the password: iam
Enter the story in the post window.
Click on the "preview your post" button
Click on the publish button
Wait a second... and you are done!

Thanks for sharing your story!
sd

Watermark's web site is up.
We still have to make some additions and tweaks, but you can check it out on the link to the left under churches.
www.iamwatermark.com

Thanks to ONPO!NT Media for their help with this! (Link to them on left)

AHHHH! I am trying to finish this message for Sunday. Taking a quick break to say hello.

In the River,
sd

Thursday, January 29, 2004

rivernew.swf

RIVER PROMO by Vinmark Productions.
Thanks Brad!

Wednesday, January 28, 2004

Went and saw "Return of the King" tonight with Vicki. Great movie. Very inspirational. Great scenes of courage and calling people to sacrifice. It inspired me in my own leadership situation. I found myself inspired to:
1) Be courageous no matter the obstacles
2) Lead from the front lines
3) Call people to sacrifice for a bigger worthy cause
4) Never give up

The movie showed a contrast of leading from position verses leading from personal purpose.

Anyways - cool stuff.

Put out the vibe,
sd

Tuesday, January 27, 2004

Met with some of the fellas this morning to follow up on our staff advance from last week. Then I did the Buffalo Wild Wings thing for lunch. Hot wings rock! But those suckers are messy. The real money could be made if they charged for napkins.

Had some friends come and shovel our drive since I am MIA in things like that. It was really nice - because we are getting a TON of snow!

I have to start cranking on my message for this week. Brad is making a flash video promo for us - so that should rock.
I apparently made the person of the week list for: kevinstinehart.com. That site is a good fun and has a cool name and is run by a cool dude. But the photo of me taken from the www.winningathome.com web site is old and not the best. :)

Hey Shorty - it's ya birthday...
sd
We had prayer tonight and had some new people participate with us. It was great. I really desire to have prayer be a natural part of our lives together within the Watermark community, because we value intimacy with God. Anyways - following the prayer meeting I had a great meeting with Carter. Carter is pursuing full time ministry and we chatted about some ways we can align with his journey and support him.

Anyways - we had a great chat about "being the church." We didn't get into it with those exact words, but it came down to that. We chatted about how we just need to pull the trigger more and realize that ministry is realizing that WE are the church and that God calls us to be MINISTERS! Anyways - I hunger to see Watermarkers develop their God initiated ministries. I so desire to see Watermarkers see themselves as ministers that they don't wait for the "official" green light from me or another staff member before "being the church and making disciples."

Tomorrow is kind of a meeting day - so I am just wrapping up some advance planning for it.

We should be ready to get the www.iamwatermark.com site up this week - if all goes according to plan.

Harrison has bit me a few times. The dude has 12 year old boy teeth in his top row. They kind of are bucky beaver teeth because of their size so I call him "Jerry Mathers" (Jerry Mathers as the BEAVER.) :) Believe it or not I used to watch the Beav and the Cleaver clan. But anyways - I can't believe how cute he is. We play a little rap song for him and he smiles and bops up and down.

Have you filled out my poll? If not you can do it under my links section. Thanks.

sd

Sunday, January 25, 2004

Today we had a great gathering experience highlighting the next generation and had kids and students tell stories that live out the vision of Watermark. "The next generation is a catalyst for the movement and examples to all believers."

We heard from a 4th grader who told her friend about Jesus, a nineteen year old guy who shared his belief that God is calling him to give his life to invest in young people and a few high school gals who talked about their journey in connecting and growing with God. Great stories and Nate wrapped it all together with a great challenge from Jesus.

Matthew 18:3-5
"And he said: "I tell you the truth, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoever welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me."

At the end we prayed over our kids and teens and closed out the morning. Anyways - it was a great experience to honor and value the next generation and see them as the church of today.

Tomorrow I get started on the "RIVER" Sunday. The music was great this morning and great mix. I enjoy the music and worshipping with the whole family (Autumn and Harrison were with us for the beginning.)

Good night sweet sweet falcon,
sd

Saturday, January 24, 2004

Today I had a fantastic spiritual conversation with someone who is on the way front end of seeking. I love unpacking the love and mercy of God. I get so excited to watch people react to God's unmeritted grace and the free gift of salvation. Anyways - shoot up a prayer for this person who desires to find God in a personal way.

A great little book for people who are trying to figure stuff out is: how good is good enough? by Andy Stanley.

Anyways - tomorrow we look at the Next Generation in our gathering. We have some new people coming so I hope I can get some time to connect with them.

Someone sent me a nice little bag with some goodies and a video. I have so appreciated the support we have received in this time of being a one legged monster.

in the river,
sd

Friday, January 23, 2004

I added a poll for those who care. Below the link section. I encourage you to fill it out and sound off. Thanks. I have some people dropping off some meals for us - which is really nice with me being down and out on the couch.

Working today on some family and marriage talk stuff.

sd
Last night we had a great life group. Everyone brought appetizers to eat. I think that is my favorite meal... a bunch of appetizers and pick food.

What made the night great was that I was able to share the "RIVER" with my group finally and they seemed to respond well. Also as a result of the "RIVER" (God's movement) Jeff VK from our group invited a friend of his who volunteers for P.O.R.T. (a support service to families with kids with cancer) Check them out at: http://www.portkids.com

Anyways - Dan came from PORT and shared stories, their vision and their need for people to help families in times of need. It was really challenging. I think our group is going to help out by buying Meijer gas cards for families, helping stock their snack cabnet at the hospital and giving support to local families. Anyways - we had a great time praying and hanging.

Also - a pizza delivery guy came by and I felt impressed by God to invite him to church and find out where he was at with God. I don't have time to lay out the whole story, but he and I chatted for a bit about his life and some struggles he's had. God moved in a cool way. Pray for the pizza delivery guy if you get a chance and pray that he will come to know God. I have his name and number and I think I'm going to hire him to do my driveway and help with leaves while I am down... unsure but praying through it... then inviting him to the FAMILY GAMES coversations at the gathering - for what he is working through.

THAT IS WHAT THE RIVER IS ABOUT! Getting into the current of God's vision!

What if we saw pizza delivery drivers as God's beloved rather than a pizza guy?

sd

Wednesday, January 21, 2004

The eagle has landed.
The surgery is over and I sit on the trusty comfy couch that I've been on for almost 2 weeks.
I found out that I had more than one tear in the cartiledge.
I also had a chipped bone and partially torn MCL.

So.... I can't put weight on my leg because of the MCL and bone and have to have crutches and brace for 6 weeks. A long road ahead. I am disappointed a bit with the time it will take, but I look forward to starting the recovery process now that surgery is over. I also am trying to maximize my time with God, family and work without going stir crazy. :)

Scott L. (from my life group) brought me a Whitman's Chocolate Sampler for a treat. It came in a big red heart! I LOVE THOSE CHOCOLATES! I guess he asked what I loved to snack on and Vicki gave him the info on my love of chocolates. It was a nice treat.

I found out that friends of ours in pregnant and I am pumped for them. They'll have to tell you if you know them. :)

Our Watermark Web site is almost up...
You can preview it at: http://www.iamwatermark.com/index3.php

We need to add a few pages and make updates and get more photos, but otherwise we are really close.
Send feedback to me at: deur@charter.net

Staying positive,
sd

Tuesday, January 20, 2004

Just got back today from a staff advance. (retreat). Anyways we hammered through a ton of issues and systems and stuff. It was a lot of pressing and focusing, but I feel really good about the results!

We have a great team of people that help Watermark align and function under a corporate banner. It is a high honor and priviledge to serve beside the men and women who volunteer and give their best every week in their life groups and gatherings.

Tomorrow I have surgery. I am very much looking forward to getting it over with and probably should be sleeping instead of typing this.

Our gathering this past Sunday was awesome and we had a great follow up lunch with some people who are wanting more information regarding Watermark. I am going to have a conversation with one gentleman this week who has never read the Bible. He seems really cool and wants to chat about stuff. One of the things we chatted about in the lunch we did was ask why they are connected in to Watermark... It was cool to hear their responses. It was nice to hear things about the teaching and music and all the other things that typically go into a critique of a church experience. BUT - it was cooler to hear how people were seeking God and connecting with others they did not know and felt like they were accepted and that they could understand things. They shared some cool value stuff that came across.

That is totally God working through our core team. In church planting (attempt at a thought here) you can have the greatest leadership team in the world, but you will not see the church become what it can become if there is not a strong core team... WHY? Because they are the church! They live it - they bring Jesus to people - they serve - they are the church.

Well - I am ready to pray and battle the pre-operation anxieties with Scripture and sleep.

Good night and God Bless,
sd

Sunday, January 18, 2004



"Family Games" : Our next conversation series beginning February 8th.
Thanks to Ked for the logo (this is a draft, but I like it)

I am out with Mike, Nate and Steve for some planning Monday and Tuesday.
Pray it will be an effective time of tackling some issues and making headway.

PS - We heard Wade's story today at the gathering and he did awesome!

sd

Saturday, January 17, 2004

I have been having some brief conversations with a few people who are checking out Watermark. These people are from other churches and are looking at different churches. Anyways - I hate the whole "church shopping" mentality. When I find out they attend another church I just encourage them regarding that church and then mention if they know someone who is unchurched who needs to find a people to belong to - that they encourage them to plug into Watermark if they can't plug in elsewhere.

Anyways - I guess I feel frustrated by consumer Christians who look to a church organization to meet their needs and meet a certain criteria. I don't think that is what Jesus was picturing when it comes to being the church. I don't know - maybe I'm a bit on edge about the issue and I'm sure I have been guilty of my share of consumer Christianity... I don't feel like I have time to woo people like that - they should be connected in their church - or if they feel like they have to leave - fine, but don't shop for a church like you do a microwave.

I thank God for the Christians that are a part of our Core team. They left their churches to be a part of a movement - a calling from God. Now we attract church and unchurched people. The unchurched people are flexible, open, participate and seem to be taking risks. Some of the churched people who are coming aren't looking to be a part of something life changing from what my conversations have brought out...

Well - I apologize if I'm making general sweeps and bashing Christians, but I'm not trying to. I just want us to see the life with Christ as more than finding a church to meet our needs (which often are things we are commanded to do in God's Word as individual followers of Christ).

Can you tell I'm amped a bit? The couch does it to me and the conviction of being a 1% church that grows from people coming to know Jesus. God help us - we can't do this - this is all you.

Thanks for reading with a grain of salt.

sd

Friday, January 16, 2004

I have surgery scheduled for Weds. for a torn meniscus and to clean out my knee from a bunch of blood and stuff. My MCL is also torn, but it will be fixed by wearing a brace. It will be a 4 to 6 week process of recovery. Anyways - just a quick update.

Sunday we are interviewing the Wade man and telling his story and how we hooked up and how he became a follower of Jesus. I pray it will be an encouragement for Christians to tell people about Christ and an opportunity for people to respond to Jesus.

The river is moving...

Have a great day! I am looking forward to getting better - it is hard to stay positive. :)

The one legged pastor,
sd

Wednesday, January 14, 2004

My name is Steve Deur and I have been on my couch for the past week! I did a funeral yesterday that went as good as a funeral can go. I pray it was meaningful for the family. It is tough stuff. I have to get ready for a meeting with Andy in a bit, but I wanted to say hello. I have been cranking on web stuff and other documents this past week. We have a staff advance coming up (we never retreat) :)

Bye bye,
sd

Sunday, January 11, 2004

Today we had a gathering. We experienced it in the round (horse shoe) and used the schools table and chairs combo. It was a great time of hearing people share how being connected to others in Life Groups has impacted them. Since beginning the "RIVER" - vision emphasis - I have sensed a cool spirit when we get together as a church. I have heard some great stories of people realizing that they are ministers and can be used by God. Anyways - I stood up in front of the gathering on one leg and crutches... Interesting. Great day and great job by our set up team, band, tech team, Steve T. organizing it and those that shared their stories. We have great servants apart of our team... We also highlighted Life Group opportunities - it was cool to see the ones that will be starting... YOGA, Nature Walking, Young Marrieds, Movies, etc...

I also had my MRI today for my left knee. Thanks to Andy for taking me and hanging out.

Well - see ya - big week ahead!

sd

Saturday, January 10, 2004

Hey - today I worked all day on the video and met with the family regarding the funeral on Tuesday. I enjoy spending time hearing families share about loved ones after they have passed. I get to hear all the fun stories and get to know the person who passed through the lives and experiences of those sharing. It always causes me to ask the question - what will my family and friends say to the preacher some day for my funeral? What was most important to me? What did I like to do? How did I treat others? What kind of material would they have to work with for the Eulogy? Anyways - great family pulling together in a tough time. Please pray for me as I share about Christ and connect with the family and friends on Tuesday. Thanks - I really need it and appreciate it! :)

My daughter is sitting with me and I am going to ask her to say some things and I will type out her words exactly...
So here she is...

"I love you. And Daddy's take care of kids and people talk about Jesus and people lie in bed and sleep. Delaney's dad loves Delaney. Dad I can't say any more I am too tired. Dad, you can do what I say, okay? Friends love, friends play with, friends like, friends all, friends z, I love my dad, I love my family, I love my whole family. Madison loves her dad. Garret is funny. That's all daddy, that's all that I want to say."

The thoughts of a 4 year old. (She just said: "I think "H" pooped his pants. I guess it's time to go.) :)

Gathering tomorrow - talking about LIFE TOGETHER! Wow - I want to value that to the point of living it!

Diet Pepsi is better than Diet Coke,
sd

Friday, January 09, 2004

Big day today.
Started just after 7 am with a call from a friend. His uncle passed away.
I spent time with the family at the hospital and then got a ride home.
The frustrating thing about my knee injury is that I can't drive (especially with the meds).
I hurt for the family - they have faced many difficult loses and now a 48 husband, father, brother and friend (and I think grandfather.) I think I may be assisting in the funeral so please pray for me to be effective in displaying and sharing Christ and His comfort as well as strength to do it on one leg. :) Pray also for the family.

I then hammered out the "RIVER" packet. I think it will assist people in having a greater understanding of what this vision emphasis is all about. I will try to load the materials at these links:

river cover.doc
letter river.doc
RIVER PACKET

Dad and mom came over an helped a bunch with house projects and Vicki gave some design help to them for their house that is currently being built. Vicki is gaining clients for home interiors - which is cool - we need to get a brochure made for her.

Well - I am excited about what God is doing in the midst of the madness! I heard of more people who are pumped and inspired by God's work through the reminder of the "RIVER."

Fair Dinkum,
sd

Thursday, January 08, 2004

So, there's this guy I know... He was walking out of Russ' restaurant and slipped on some ice and blew his knee out. What kind of 6 foot 4 inch dude can't hack an icy drive? This bloke. I totally whacked my knee and possibly tore a ligament (or so it appears.) It looks like a long road ahead for my knee. Last year at this time I had surgery for my right knee!

Just wanted to share my angst, but alas - I am praying that God will use this to advance the "RIVER" vision experience in my life. I also have been looking for opportunities to talk to people about Jesus. Started 2 conversations today to try to open the door to sharing... 1 person already was connected to a church and the other stranger started sharing his life a bit, but then I had to go. Anyways - the experience was important and I find myself saying hello to strangers and talking to people about life and God more. The desire and heart and passion is growing.

Well - my poor wife is waiting on me as I sit in my living room trying to get work done over the phone, web and email and she has to juggle 2 kids as well.

If you want - I would very much value prayer for healing on my left knee. The first thing I thought of when my knee popped was - "What will this mean to my involvement in the 'RIVER?'" I don't want this knee to slow down my leadership. I think it will just make me depend more on God. (I love life lessons!) Also Vicki and I are supposed to go on a cruise in March to celebrate 10 years of marriage this year... I want to be back in action for that significant adventure. Well - enough sobbing - thanks for reading (if you ever came back after my internet fast) :)

popping pain meds,
sd

special thanks to Nate Smith (below) for getting me to all my appointments today.

Wednesday, January 07, 2004



My awesome wife and kids...
We just recently launched a new vision emphasis experience called: "RIVER." I believe it will be the most significant experience so far in the life of our baby church. The purpose is to see people live out the vision of Watermark in practical and personal ways. I feel really heavy with this. It came in a flash and a deep sense of urgency and desire to see every person - starting with me - really believing that God wants us to live out the vision. The getting it done!

It seems like sharing and casting vision is exciting and a great pump me up, but getting it done...turning vision into reality is the heart shaping, hard working, prayer intensive stuff that makes the difference. So I am trying to lead this thing with Vicki by example and I have already had some cool God stories and sense growth in my life.

Anyways for more info you can check out Watermark stories.

I joined a gym and worked out for the first time today. I am trying to lose 20 pounds in 10 weeks. Anyways - I am enjoying the program I am on at the moment.

We have life group tomorrow night and I am really really looking forward to that! I've missed our group over the holidays. We are highlighting life groups this Sunday at the gathering and it should be a great day of "story telling."

xoxoxox
sd

Monday, January 05, 2004

I am back and have a lot to share.

I will give you a brief run down on personal stuff and then get to other stuff in the next few days...

> Great Christmas season - a lot of driving (to Dertroit twice and Chicago once and multiple times to Holland)
> Great Watermark series "Sam X" was fun to do and a creative way to look at Christmas.
> Fantastic family time with Vic and the kids and extended family.

But now as I enter the world of blogging again my daughter is releasing the contents of her stomach regularly. This is not fun, but she is the absolute best person in the world to be sick. She is so sweet and helpful. The FLU makes her into an angel. I was helping her get cleaned up and she looked at me and said, "I love you daddy - you are so kind to me."

I love to be tender and gentle with my beautiful little girl. We started a little night time thing called: "Say something nice." So before bed I tell her something I really like about her and she does the same. I once told her that I think she has a beautiful smile and I think she has the best smile. She lit up like the Christmas tree that MUST COME DOWN TODAY!!!! Anyways - you forget how powerful encouragement is - to your family, friends and people around you.

Well - I'll blog more later. Thanks for stopping in after all this time.

May God bless you!
sd