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Mixed Tape Vol. I

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It’s all about the mixtape!

That’s right, you know what I’m talking about. That wonderful combination of plastic and magnetic tape capturing every song that "identified" who you were as a teen…or maybe as an adult (if that’s the case…just keep that to yourself).

There’s a good chance if you were born after 1990 you may not know what I’m talking about so by today’s standard, you’d call this your playlist, your Spotify list, or your  Pandora station, so don’t tune out yet young people!

Whatever your generation, I’m talking about that mix of songs that will likely get you stared at in your car as you scream sing your way to work...you know who you are...

You see, music just has a way of reaching deep into our hearts, building us up, comforting us, relieving anxiety, and of course, bringing us into the throne room of God.

If you know me, you know that I have music pumping through my veins, I have theme songs constantly playing in the background (uuhh who doesn’t!), and my wife doesn’t hear snoring…she hears my sweet melodic symphony…ok, maybe not. Seriously though, I absolutely love music, so when it comes to glorifying God, I can think of no better way to lift Him up than through music!

1 Chronicles 16 says:

23  Let the whole earth sing to the LORD!
    Each day proclaim the good news that he saves.


29  Give to the LORD the glory he deserves! Bring your offering and come into his presence. Worship the LORD in all his holy splendor.

See, We were made to worship God and music is a natural avenue for our worship!

I must tell you, I absolutely LOVE the heart for worship in our Church. Matt Wallenburg has done a wonderful job following the Lord and submitting his ministry wholeheartedly over to God. I’ll be honest, growing up in "church" I was familiar with places that sing the same songs every week…over and over and over...and over again, so when I first experienced worship at C4 I was a little bit caught off guard.

I mean, how are you supposed to learn the songs when they don’t repeat week after week!? I know you’ve asked that question too… ;)

Yet when I learned the heart of worship that emanates from our fellowship it all made absolute sense!

You see, the heart of worship at C4 is to be a ministry that is raw, unedited, pure, and 100%, wholly devoted to, and led by the Spirit.

Don't get me Wrong, we do strive to be excellent in ministry…raw and unedited does not equal sloppy and unprepared.

Every worship set is personal and prepared specifically for that service. The songs are prayed over and chosen with the leading of the Spirit. We do not coordinate with the messages being taught, and we do not choose songs by the popularity of the artist, song, or theme. This ministry is truly organic, focused 100% on God and led by the Holy Spirit.

Once I came to realize this, my perspective changed and my heart welled up for Matt Wallenburg and the work he was doing here. God has put a great calling on his life, and he has answered that call faithfully. I’m blessed to be involved in Ministry with Matt and am excited about what God is doing in the Worship ministry here at C4.

What does all this have to do with a mixed tape? Well I want you to join me for my next 6 posts, where we’ll take a look at my worship mixtape! These are songs you will hear while attending C4, songs that are focused on the Lord and lead us to a closer relationship with Him. These are some of my favorite worship tunes, and yes, you could catch me scream singing these all the way down Arapahoe...

Which songs are on the top of my list? What do they have to do with scripture and why are they significant to our fellowship? I’ll be sharing all of this and more, so come on back...subscribe...like...share...bookmark...whatever it is you do, and check it out next time!

Posted by Ben Young with
in Family

Letters to my son - Introduction

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O' my son! 

This year has been a crazy one...you've really stirred the waters! I was beginning to wonder if being a father was in God's plan for me. I mean, I have to admit, the thought of changing another human being's poopy diapers was exactly bucket list material for me. You're too young to know, but the hard rock wall between your grandpa and I, that definitely made me wonder... What if? What if I do have a son and he grows up to want nothing to do with me to live a totally different life, could I take that? I believe that little by little God was preparing me for the responsibility of leading you and Mom, of guiding you both spiritually, and of loving you both sacrificially. I have to say, though, that once you "made your entrance," a lot of those questions kind of faded away. 


Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord,
The fruit of the womb is a reward.

Like arrows in the hand of a warrior,
So are the children of one’s youth.


- Psalm 127:3-4

I guess I never really saw having children as a reward, but I totally do now! I look at the above verse and think of arrows in a warrior's hand, how they must give Him purpose, envigorate Him, and propel Him forward in being a warrior. Son, you have given me more purpose to persevere in my walk with Jesus. It hasn't all been roses these last seven months! Oh boy, I thought I knew what exhaustion was, but I had no idea. Never have I seen someone so demanding over for milk! I mean, milk isn't THAT great is it? The only other person I know who seems to love soft things as much as you is your mother... waking both of you up in the climax of your nap is a BAD IDEA!!! 

Oh, but there are so many awesome things about you! You love to giggle when I make goofy sounds and faces... and I'm pretty stoked that only I can make you laugh that way. You don't give up easily! Watching you trying to master crawling is like watching a fish flop around on dry land! You got it down, eventually, but I love that you didn't give up. 

 I want to start writing you through these blogs with the hopes that, as God teaches me new and exciting things through being a parent, you will one day grow to know His heart AND my heart through them. I KNOW, I KNOW I can be an overly sentimental dude! You will just have to get used to it. Sorry, I am now stuck with you...the good and the stinky... so I guess that means for the next 18 years you are also stuck with me.

I guess the first thing God's taught me and I want to leave with you is this. It may be difficult to be a parent, but not hard to love you. It may be taxing when you won't be still and let me put a fresh diaper on you, but I enjoy each second. I have come to see a parallel these last seven months between being a parent, and my relationship with the Lord. How come the Lord's mercies fail not? We can be such boneheads!! How can God be so gracious? I know that God's purpose, at least in part, in allowing couples to have children is to give us a window into His own heart towards us. We may be able to vicariously look into other's lives and imagine God's fatherly heart towards His beloved children when we see them love their own children so deeply, but we will never know fully until we experience it ourselves. 

In short, you are a gift as the verse above said...a demanding one, but just the one I needed to draw nearer to God and understand His heart in a new and fresh way. 


Love your Father,

James Stroud


 17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.


- James 1:17







Posted by James Stroud with