Archive for January, 2010

Some Thoughts

January 31, 2010

In just 2 days we will have been here in northern New England 1 month. I can’t believe how fast time flies, it’s like a blur. It seems like yesterday that we were packing up our moving truck with friends and family and counting down the days for our departure. I have been thinking through the past 30 days and have some thoughts:

Sunny Days – We have been blessed weather wise: sunny days have been common, more so than cloudy, gloomy days. I can take the cold with the sun shining no problem!

The Kindle – I was skeptical when I first heard about this piece of hardware. It is the best way for me to read books on the fly. If you are considering buying one let me encourage you to buy one, it’s amazing.

Books I’ve Read“Baptism With the Holy Spirit” R.A. Torrey, “Ignite: How to Spark Immediate Growth in Your Church” – Nelson Searcy, “Tipping Point” Malcom Gladwell

Music – Honestly, I’m a little out of the loop with any of the hip, cool music that is out there. It’s really not a priority these days so I have been depending on music of my past that is special to me. I will not bore you with what music but I will say this about one recent release, David Crowder Band “Church Music”, amazing.

Movies – Just watched “The Swiss Family Robinson” with the kids. I know it’s ancient but its great. I love the animal stunts, tree house, fights with pirates, etc. It’s the boys new favorite film. They call it “the tree house movie”.

Food – The food situation up here in New England is better than Florida. It seems as every meal we have out is an art or craft. I love it. Apple slices on a turkey sandwich, maple syrup on a pork loin. Good stuff for sure.


FIrst Launch Team Meeting!

January 25, 2010

Today was a monumental day not only in the life our new church, but in my personal life.  9 of us met in our apartment in downtown Lebanon for our first official Riverbank Church Launch Team Meeting. It was an amazing time of just hanging out and more important, vision casting. I shared from the book and life of Nehemiah, and his clear solution to a problem in his hometown of Jerusalem. Thats all vision is, a solution to a problem. In our context at Riverbank Church we recognize the problem locally is the fact that of the 78,000 people who live in the region only 4,000 actually go to church and of those 4,000 only 800 attend an evangelical Christian church. Amazing, staggering, motivating. Our vision is to be a solution to the problem. We will be a church that reaches out to the community with the life changing message and love of Jesus, making disciples. We will create environments where we will be able to reach out affectively. I then challenged the team to jump on board by committing to the vision. The commitment involves being time bound (70 days), attend meetings, invite others to participate, make the launch happen, focus on those outside of the Christian community.  We closed the evening by watching Mute Math videos and talking about the exciting times here in the Upper Valley of NH/VT.

Pretty much settled in.

January 16, 2010

This week was our first week of getting on with our new lives here in the Upper Valley. I worked on all of the final legal issues, finishing the final touches on getting our 501C3 tax exempt status, working with the church bookkeeper on all of our financials, distributing lots of Riverbank Church announcement flyers, meeting with potential Launch Team members, meeting with School District officials about our meeting place, amongst many others things…. Needless to say the ball is rolling and we are on our way to Launch Day! Saturday (January 16) Dylan and I are going to a local Emerging Artist Showcase in Hartland, Vermont where some of our Launch Team guys band will be playing. It will be a great opportunity to meet some local artists and recruit some Launch Team members. Last but not least, this Sunday I have the tremendous opportunity to join Calvary Fellowship in Hartford, Conn. and share our story of faith and the vision of Riverbank Church. Please pray that God will continue to open doors and bring the right people to our Launch Team.

Week 1 is down!

January 11, 2010

Just a few notes reviewing our first week in northern New England.

Monday January 4 – We just unpacked our boxes and tried to get the “smoke stank” out of our master bathroom. It was real nice having our living room set up, it was kind of an oasis as we unpacked and continued to purge. We had a huge yard sale in December trying to get rid of a lot junk. It wasn’t enough, we had much more junk than we originally thought.

Tuesday January 5 – Took the family around our new town and even went sledding in Hanover. The boys loved it and we enjoyed some great hot chocolate from the Dirt Cowboy. By this time we were starting to settle in a bit. Empty boxes were a-plenty and more space in the new apartment felt great. I must say , apartment life will be an adjustment.

Wednesday January 6 – Bethany (my sis) has been such a huge help and her son Ben, has been amazing keeping the 2 Goeppner boys busy. Their room is pretty close to completion, as is ours. There is light at the end of the tunnel! We went to Hanover again for sledding. This will be a winter staple for us! On a different note, we made our first big purchase for Riverbank Church, a new laser printer extreme. It’s a sweet machine and will be used much! Beth and I put the finishing touches on the boys room late that evening.

Thursday January 7 – We awoke early to take my sister and nephew to Manchester airport. It was a dreaded day for us as we have been so blessed to have them help us get moved in and settled. After dropping them off at the airport we drove down to the seacoast area and visited with my aunt Judy and uncle Chet.  We sipped some tea and caught up after about 10 months of spotty communication. From there we drove to Hampton, NH to meet my other aunts and uncles for lunch at THIS PLACE. Good stuff. We stopped at Target on the way home, the closest is an hour away 😦

Friday January 9 – Growing more and more comfortable in our new apartment we took to the streets of the Upper Valley and explored a bit. We went to Norwich, VT to the King Arthur Flour Bakery and ate some tasty pastries and hot tea. What a cool place, check their site here. Of course, we drove around a bit more, learning new roads and neighborhoods. It was our anniversary this day, but we didn’t celebrate due to the circumstances.

Saturday January 10 – I decided to take the crew out again to another town in the region,

Woodstock, VT. This is the quintessential New England town without a doubt. We walked around a bit and enjoyed a real cool general store. On the way there we saw the east coast Grand Canyon, Quechee Gorge, it’s quite beautiful!  Later our friends Dylan and Aimee Nicholas stopped by to watch the boys while we went out to eat to celebrate our 11th anniversary. There aren’t many restaurants in the area, but there are some very good ones. We ended up going to a Japanese place. Good stuff.

Sunday January 11 – Our first church experience in our

new hometown was at Wellspring Worship Center. We met some great people and I was able to chat with my friend, Pastor Craig Morton. What a great guy! After church we drove north to Fairlee, VT. for the annual Lake Morey Winterfest. It was very wintery day (high of 15 degrees today) and we decided to do as the Romans. There was snowshoe volleyball, ice skating and trails (on the lake), hay rides, dog sleds, snowmobiling….you get the point. So cool was the hospitality area where we were able to warm up with hot chocolate and banana bread. The craziest of all was the fact that Roman taught himself to ice skate today. The kid is a natural.

Tomorrow – Day one on the job at Riverbank Church.

On the ground.

January 8, 2010

On Friday January 1st the Goeppner family hopped in our vehicles and followed friends David, Jodie and Shae James in our moving truck to make our way on our journey to northern New England. We first stopped in Stuart, Florida to have a last family meal at Cracker Barrel. At 7am we hit the road and drove straight through to Staunton, Va. (pronounced Stanton ;). It was there we met up with long time friends Kenny and Esther Warren (and kids). They drove well over an hour from Lynchburg just to see us!! It was great to reconnect with them even if it was only for a quick visit. Early the next morning we took off for the last leg of the journey. Man is Virginia the longest state EVER? It seemed to go on and on. We stopped a few times (including Shartlesville, Pa.)and eventually hit some snow in Vermont (falling heavily at times). By 10pm on January 2, 2010 we arrived in White River Junction, our new area, 10 minutes from our apartment. We settled in for the night at the Hampton Inn (not too shabby!).On Sunday January 3rd we awoke to a fresh snow fall and very ready to begin our move into our apartment. By 9am we were full on lugging our gear up three floors and down to long halls to #312. Our great friend Derek Tsakiris had a crew of peeps ready to unload the Budget truck. By 11:30am all of our stuff was in-house and friends and family had unloaded boxes and pictures were already on the walls! What’a 3 days!! More to come……