Sunday, August 05, 2007

Life is Crazy

Lot's of emotions lately, can't explain it, but there have just been a lot. A lot going on since I last posted here. I am sitting in Seymor, IN...not sure if that's spelled right, not sure at all. Sometimes I would like it if a lot wasn't going on, just go to work, come home. Maybe someday.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Oh yeah

Aw, yes. My least favorite part of my mission trips to Mexico. I was actually blessed a few years to be the person who got to clean the bucket out. What an honor.

This is funny, but good.

My buddy Tom designed this and I thought it was funny. This is for the next Metro Detroit Youth Pastors Lunch on Sept. 8th.

Project311 Lunch Gathering

PS...Can you PS in the beginning? Oh well, thanks to Pat Williams for this idea. I saw this on his blog and I was like...I should put it on mine.


I don't want to take up a lot of your time, but you have a month and a few days notice, so right this down and put it in Outlook or iCal as quick as you can.

September 8th, 2006


Faith Lutheran Church
37635 Dequindre Rd
Troy MI 48083

Reasons Not to Attend:

1. It’s too far. Let me be real honest, I hate that reason, but that’s coming from a guy who loves to connect with other youth workers. You have plenty of time to set up a car pool and save money
for gas. Please don’t let this be your reason.

2. I don’t need another Meeting. Maybe, but trust me, you need this one. Local gatherings and
networks are where it’s at, but what a sign of unity when youth workers come together from all over
Metro Detroit. Let’s Unite, Come Together, Encourage Each Other and Pray for one Another.

3. I’m A Tool and I don’t need other youth workers. I was there, actually, I gave myself the award for
world’s biggest tool. Back in the day, I only wanted to “network” to make myself feel better, to talk
numbers, to get my name out there and hear myself talk. Then I was slapped in the face, not
literally, by my youth ministry professor and she let me know that I was a tool and I needed to cut it
out. When I did, I realized that by building connections with other youth workers was one of the
healthiest decisions I have ever made in ministry.

4. It’s my day off. Ok, real touchy subject here. Yes, days off are EXTREMELY important, but can you
switch it, just for that week? Just asking.

Reasons to Attend:

1. We Love You, Pray for You and we are Concerned for you.

2. Our dream is to see all of the Metro Detroit Youth Workers come together. All be in one room, at
once and encourage each other. Pray for each other. Be concerned with each other’s needs
and let’s see what will happen. Our dream is to not just see Suburban youth workers come together
but Urban as well. Full and part time and volunteer youth workers.

3. Hopefully you will leave encouraged & blessed. I don’t know about you, but this last year has been
the most stressful of my life. Quiet moments with my Father, Laughter filled moments with my family
and moments I have spent with many of you have been extremely uplifting during these stressful times. So, please consider.

4. We are putting a lot of effort and hard work into a lunch for you and we would love for you to
attend, that’s it, plain and simple.

More Information to Come

In the coming weeks, you will get more information about how we are going to fill this exciting two hours of your life, so keep a look out. If you can help or would like to help, please email me at


1. If you are going to NYWC and you haven’t bought your ticket yet, this is for you. Youth Specialties has given Project311 a special rate to offer to you. That’s right, YOU! If your not buying a ton of tickets, this should save you some money. Our rate is $275 compared to the regular rate of $350. So, if you would like that rate, please email Jason RAITZ (ha, you get it, Raitz, Rates?) and I can give you the information you will need.

2. Thank you for your support during our transition. Many of you have called and emailed and it has
meant a lot. Thank you.

Please know you are being prayed for!


Jason & Project311

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Tough Night

Don't want to get all woe is me, but man, I am having a tough night. Scratch that, a tough week...month...year.

Thank goodness I can rely on Christ.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Love 7th Grade Boys

Well I am on my way home from camp and my bus smells. It is a crazy smell, nothing I have ever expeienced before. It still amazes me how drastic they change between 7th and 8th grade and how little things like being clean start to matter. Anyways, what a blast.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

My boy was moved

I don't know if you can see his tears, but Zach was truly moved by the episode of Thomas he was watching. He is so deep, there are so many sides to him.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

What I would like to blog about

Due to time issues, here is what I would like to blog about:

  • If I picked the speakers/breakouts for NYWC.
  • Review of my first week at my new church.
  • Elevate's summer camp.
  • Metro Detroit Youth Workers Lunch coming Sept. 8th, 2006.
  • How much I love John Ortberg.
  • I shot a shotgun at camp and now I have a bruise.
  • Why I can't wait for the National Youth Workers Convention! (We are going to Cincy)
  • Moving is hard stuff!
  • I miss my kids!
  • I miss my wife!
  • I miss my wife more!
  • I miss my mom.
  • With out my families help, we would be lost.
  • How amazing the Elevate staff is.
  • I don't like Chicago's talk radio, yet. Or the newspapers. They don't have enough highlights about Detroit teams.
Well, that's some of the list. Wow. Crazy. Neato, Super.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Huge Fun

I am on a bus with 45 seventh grade boys...what a blast! We are on our way to summer camp and right now we are watching the classif movie...Angels in the Outfield.

Saturday, August 05, 2006

This is Incredible.

(Ht or So to Scott)

First Elevate

I guess it's not my first Elevate, I have been here a couple of times the last year as a guest speaker, but this is my first official Elevate as a staffer.

I can still remember driving up to Elevate the first time I spoke here last summer and I couldn't of been more nervous. We were driving up to IL from KY and I spent the entire drive just worrying. I worried about messing up, not being funny, getting my points wrong, and all that. It was so wild. Tracie just kept saying, don't worry, it will be great. Well, not really nervous this time, just glad to be a part of the team. Basically, I made the most common of mistakes for speaker/teachers...I wasn't confident. I put it all on me and not on God working through me. I have really worked hard the last year making sure that I wasn't being a "tool" and putting all the emphasis on me and not God. Well, I am telling one of my stories tonight..."The Wolfboy". I haven't told it too much, but I am going to tell it tonight. I think it brings out Ps. 119:105.

Friday, August 04, 2006

7.5 days

Only 7.5 days left till I can hug my kids and my beautiful wife. I have already talked with Tracie 4 times today, hopefully she isn't getting tired of me. I doubt that could happen, I am her "special Raitz". You know it.

Huh? Bekah has a way with her brothers

I don't know what's going on here, I really don't. Let's just say bekah sue really wants sisters.

I don't know if her wish will ever come true. We'll see.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

One of my new Mission's in Life

I have another Mission in life and I believe it is EXTREMELY IMPORTANT!!! I am passionate about this and I am going to fight and lobby and do everything I can to make sure this mission is implemented. Not just locally, no way, not just by State, no way, but throughout the World. That Mission, is two fold:

1. Get kid size toilets and urinals and sinks in every public restroom. I hate when Bobby says, "Daddy I have to go" and all that is around is a public restroom. They are nasty and messy and gross. They need kid size ones, yes they do. And they need some kind of cleaning device, something simple, like a foamy spray.

The second is as important...

2. To get Diet Pepsi with Lime in every gas station in the world. It was huge a year or two ago, now you can barely find it. But, folks, it is fantastic! We need it everywhere and I will not go to sleep until it happens.

There they are, my two missions! Help me! Let's Unite! In the words of Third Day, "We gotta come together", in the words of Johnny Cash, "Get rhyhm...when you get the blues".

Help me. Join. Fight. Love. In the words of Petra..."This means War"

Lack of Blogging due to Craziness

Wow, I have lots and lots and lots to blog about, but it has been crazy the last few days, scratch that, the last few weeks, scratch that, the last few months. You get the idea. I am looking forward to not traveling as much and I can't till my family can get out here in Chicago.

I was driving away yesterday and to see those faces and hands waving good-bye, it was hard. I would love to get isight, or something like that someday, so I could see them and they could see me. I am definately looking forward to the fall, barely any travel. I may only be checking out a conference, but still working on that. I have no retreats scheduled, no trips, no nothing. And I can't wait till next summer because I will not be traveling all summer! Yeah, Yippee, Super-Duper!

I arrived yesterday and had an incredible greeting from the team here at Elevate. Can I just say what an honor it is to be a part of this team, they are awesome. I really look forward to getting to know them and being apart. Next week we leave for summer camp at Springhill (IND.) and so that will be a great time to get to know them and students. We get back on Friday the 11th and the leadership summit will be taking place, so I may stay that night so I don't have drive another 5 hours and then I will leave Saturday morning and race to Detroit to hug my kids and my beautiful wife.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

First official day on the job

I am leaving in just a few seconds to drive to Chicago for the 5th time in 2 months, it's almost like I am moving there. I should make it in time, scratch that, I will make it in time for the weekly staff meeting.

On a bummer note, I won't see my family for 10 days. Just with packing, and only having one car as a family, we couldn't figure it out. So, I will call home 5-7 times a day. It will be the longest I
have been away since going to Jamaica in 2001 for 10 days. But, Tracie has lots of support and my brother will be working on the house and my parents are just around the corner.

On a cool note, I guess I get an office. I haven't had an office for awhile and it's really cool I get a place to call my own. I have worked out of Panera Bread's, friends offices, my car and so many more places this year, it's cool.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Bye, Bye Children's Hospital of Detroit

I can't believe this is our last visit to the hospital for Zach. We have been here a lot the last two years to see Zach's dieticion, his genetic counselor, his genetic doctor and the nurses who stopby to see him because they say he is "soooo cute". Next month we already have an apointment at Chicago's childrens hospital, good thing my wife is on top of it all.

Monday, July 31, 2006

Who Said this?

Whoever is wounded deeply, God will use greatly.


Whoever is used greatly, will be deeply wounded.

Is that even right?

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Is there something wrong with me?

This weekend Ashlee Simpson and Ashley Parker Angel were in town for a concert and if I would had the cash...I would of went. Is there something wrong me? I mean, I would of gone only to study youth culture, or something like that. Seriously though, what the heck is wrong with me. It's not that I even like them, I don't know what it is.

Friday, July 28, 2006

Camp Velocity...Day 5

I can't believe it's almost over. 1 talk to go, tear down the sound/lights, haul the gear out to the trailer, say good byes to some veyr good friends and head home tomorrow morning.

My parents just left and they surprised us by taking our older two, including the birthday boy himself, Bobby Jay. So, it's quiet with just Zachary. That could be because he's soon as he gets up, it will be loud again.

Highlights this week:

  • Spending the week with some great Jr. highers.
  • Getting to hang out with Dave Kurt, Jason Shinn, Mark Butler, Phil Woodman, Dana Kidder, and Clint Beiri. These are great guys and I wish I would of spent more time with them. There are other great youth pastors here as well and it was great talking with them.
  • Hanging out with my kids. What a blast!
  • Watching the guys lead worship. I am so proud of them and they did a great job.

God is Amazing!

As some of you know, we have been struggling to find a truck/driver to pull back our trailer full of equipment. Well, I spoke with this awesome guy last night from Calvary Baptist in Canton and he is going to come back down and haul the trailer back to MI for us. Wow, what an answer to Prayer!

By borrowing equipment and a trailer and finding folks who drove for us, we were able to save the camps we partnered with something like three thousand dollars. Yippe, Super-Duper.