This is the story of a collection of people who follow Jesus. We live in Littleton. We encounter people in the name of Jesus, we allow Jesus to turn us into disciples, we gather often, and we equip people to love and serve other people better.

Friday, July 31, 2009

GodSightings: The Plight of Homeless Christians, by EC Scott: 7/31/09

The following email came to my inbox today.

I really like it, and the fact that it is written by my friend Eugene Scott is an added bonus.  Wise words from a good friend.


----- Forwarded Message ----
From: Eugene C. Scott
To: Mark Kraakevik
Sent: Friday, July 31, 2009 10:41:16 AM
Subject: GodSightings: The Plight of Homeless Christians, by EC Scott: 7/31/09

The Plight of Homeless Christians

By Eugene C. Scott


In 1977 I was homeless.  So, disgusted with city-life, I high-tailed it for the mountains and pitched my tiny orange tent in Cottonwood Lake Campground.  I dropped out and spent my days hiking, trout fishing, and reading Tolkien’s “The Lord of the Rings.”  Waking as the tent heated from the morning sun and falling asleep with a billion stars shining as my nightlight was freedom defined.

Occasionally my camp-mate and I drove his Plymouth Belvedere to my cousin’s house on Trout Creek.  There we sat in stiff wooden chairs around her kitchen table and ate and talked and laughed with incense burning and Pink Floyd playing in the background.  Inside her walls lived a different kind of freedom: the freedom of belonging.  Her screen door slammed shut on a fearsome loneliness.  The summer wore on.  We visited my cousin’s home, our home away from homelessness, more frequently.

I was a young, immature, follower of Christ in 1977.  I knew less than nothing about God and life.  I had no idea that what we were doing around my cousin’s kitchen table was oddly church-like.  We sang no hymns, passed no offering plate, and followed no liturgy. We broke bread; we gave thanks; we encouraged one another; we loved one another.  We had a sacred fellowship.  And God was there, though not invoked, yet gentle, invisible, insistent.  God surfaced in nearly every conversation, hung around in every corner.

Everyone needs a place to belong: a community to talk, laugh, cry, and encounter God with.

In 2008 I became a homeless Christian, without a gathered Christian community to encounter God with.  At first, like in the summer of 1977, the freedom was exhilarating.  Did you know people sleep in, read the comics, and freely hang out in coffee shops on Sunday mornings?  Suddenly Sundays became Sabbath, relaxed and unpressurized.

Eventually though, reading the funnies, or even the Bible, in my boxers lost its appeal.  I missed the intellectual, social, and spiritual stimulation present in a gathered Christian community.  I yearned for encountering God in music, sermons, ancient and modern rites, and most of all, other people.  I did not miss, however, the politics, the griping, or the massive weight of trying to speak honestly for God.

While homeless, my spiritual life resembled a slowly receding tide, leaving bleached, empty shells of faith on the beach.  My faith became a distant, powerless belief system rather than a vibrant way of life.  Now months later, surrounded by a grace-filled Christian community, God is rebuilding my soul.

I am not the only one to experience spiritual homelessness.  Disgusted with the real and perceived hypocrisy, ritual, dogma, judgementalism, and general irrelevance of what we now call church, many followers of Christ have dropped out and pitched a tent in their own backyards hoping for the best.  Researchers claim only about 20% of Americans attend church.  While three quarters of American adults call themselves Christian.

A sizable majority of Christians are homeless, without a gathered community to belong to.  You may be one.

The problem is God designed life to be lived with-in a caring, serving, worshiping community called church.  Unlike bowling, Christianity is not an individualistic sport.  God most often shows up in the spaces (interactions) between people and the more distant those spaces the smaller the interaction and the easier it is to lose sight of God.  God loves us as individuals but calls us to live in community.  “Let’s see how inventive we can be in encouraging one another, not avoiding worshiping together as some do but spurring each other on . . . .” Hebrews 10:24-25, The Message. 

This question is not whether one “can be a Christian while never ‘going’ to church.”  Church is a family, if often a dysfunctional one.  You may go to your family’s house, but you don’t “go to” family.  You are family.  You are the church.  In Christ we have been adopted and are a part of a family whether we are estranged—homeless—or not.  And just as being estranged from our biological families has far-reaching effects, so too, does being estranged from our spiritual families.  The plight of homeless Christians is serious and debilitating to us as individuals and to us as the church.

Often it is not laziness or apostasy that keeps us homeless.  Very real fear, pain, and past disappointments keep many of us from belonging to a faith family.  Jesus knows our pain and estrangement.  The Prodigal Son is not just a story about forgiveness, but also about coming home to God and family, pouty older brother and all.  Reconnecting is a fearful prospect, I know.  But know also that God is waiting for your return and will kill the fatted calf when you do.  We might even put on some Pink Floyd.

GodSightings are an uncommon view of God from a common point of view written by Dr. Eugene C. Scott.  Reach him at  If you wish to be discontinued from this list, please reply with Unsubscribe in the subject line.  

Dr. Eugene C. Scott
The Neighborhood Church

Posted via email from Mark's posterous

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Status?? A study in introspection - what an extrovert does when left alone

My dashboard

My Bible:  I have read it three days in a row!

My forecast here in Denver: high of 70, currently 55 and rainy

My physical condition: no substantial physical exercise is quite awhile.  Current routine is a 1/2 mile walk each morning.

My emotional condition: (see physical condition) currently a bit bumpy, just saw that the dog dish still has food in it (Bailey died 16 days ago on the highway in Montana).  I am homesick for Brasil, and I am starting to really miss my family. 

My outlook:  Postive.  This fall is going to be a great one at the EDGE.  As a whole, we are falling deeper in love with Jesus, our community is gelling, we have the right peole in leadership, and the possibility exists for significant impact on our community.

My current email count: 6686 messages in yahoo, 5642 in aol/mac/edgeco

My voice mails: 3

My kids: A and B are taking tennis lessons this week.  Shopping for a new puppy

My cell phone: blackberry is present and currently syncing with my mac computer (miracle).  Because I was in Brazil, I have enough minutes left to talk for several days straight and still not use all of July's minutes.

My filing: (the box) the pile on my kitchen table of things to file is currently ten inches high

My facebook: 2045 friends (clear indication that God created me with a desire to connect with people - my hell is a deserted Island)

My twitter: I follow 738 people, 675 people follow me, and I have posted 2,166 status updates

Edge Offerings in church last week: 2973.00 - we made budget in July!  Thank you God.

The bizarre part is God is intimately connected with all of the above details.  They all matter, and yet his love for me is not based on any of this indicators.

Posted via email from Mark's posterous

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

The movie Watchmen

Rented it from Redbox last night.

Definitely a good superhero movie.

Like all good superhero movies it wrestles with identity, and purpose, and justice and the frailty of human live.

I didn't like the existentialism of the film.  It kept saying, "If God does exist, he must not care very much about humans."

The quote that has me thinking is a dialogue between two heroes.  One says "What happened to the American Dream?" and the other one says, "It came true!"  That is crazy.  So much of the American dream was about consumerism, and now we have it all, but are not happy. 




Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Posted via email from Mark's posterous

Friday, July 17, 2009

Sat. 2am: finished loading videos, going to bed. Tomorrow is the last full day of Promife

Posted via email from Mark's posterous

Tonight is the last street preaching night - I am going with Alex's group

Mark Kraakevik

of 8776 West Geddes Place, Littleton, CO 80128
Mark can be reached at 720-308-4051
Mark's blog can be found at

"The secret of staying young is to live honestly, eat slowly, and lie about your age."
  - Lucille Ball

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Monday, July 13, 2009

Lunch on Monday in Brasil

This is a ten minute video of me saying hello to a lot of people. In the middle we play the classic cup game, you may want to fast forward, and in the end we are playing dancing to someone singing a rap.

Posted via web from Mark's posterous

Video from last nights street presentation - Dance Troop

This was the group that performed before I got up to speak. They are from the local church.

Posted via web from Mark's posterous

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Video report from this afternoon's home visits.

David talks to 9 people about Jesus at a picnic table

Posted via email from Mark's posterous

Sunday Morning

It is 11:20AM Sunday morning here.

Just finished preaching on Genesis Chpt. 1.  Focused on how God, the creator of the universe, created each of us with purpose.  It was well received.  I am posting on a short video from earlier this morning to show you what the worship its like.  Its very hard to capture on video what is actually happening.  God's presence was here. 

Now they are going over how to make a home visit.  This afternoon we will make our first home visits.  This is all cold call visits, unlike the rest of the week, which will be follow up visits to those who attend the Jesus film/street preaching/patomime events in the evening.

To the parents: Alex and Ian are doing great.  Both have already found friends and are injoying learning phrases in Portuguese. 

Prayer request:

1) Pray for us as we make these visits this afternoon that they are well recieved and that people decide to come to the event in the park this evening. 
2) Pray for our health, we are all tired.  People were up till 1pm last night, and up at the school moving around at 6am this morning.  We were to sleep from 11 to 7, but not many got to actually do that.
3) Pray for the new people here at Promife, the atmosphere of the week is shaped by how well the new students understand what we are doing.  There are 116 people here, and about 40 -50 of them are new this year.

Gotta run,


Posted via email from Mark's posterous

Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Final push from Billings to Bozeman

We left Minnesota at 4am and we are now in our last two hours. Drive through North Dakota was uneventfully. Two barf bags, one spilled chocolate shake, the endless search for good coffee and a Redbox video (the only redbox we found was busted). Text message conversation with Community life pastor Grant as we drover through the middle NOWHERE. Surreal experience. Brazil Trip update: we leave on Friday. We got 500 more dollars towards the trip on Sunday. Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Posted via email from Mark's posterous

Monday, July 06, 2009

Playing in the sprinklers

Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Posted via email from Mark's posterous

Half way through the vacation: Jefson Reunion was awesome

It was so great to spend the weekend with my family in Forest City, Iowa.  I did not take many pictures.  But others did and hopefully I will be able to forward some of those on to you soon.  I got the honor of preaching yesterday at our family gathering.  It was such a blast.  We met in an old Lutheran church that they have moved onto the Heritage Park. 

Sounds like church on Sunday went well.  We raised another 500 towards the trip, so we are closing in on our financial goals.  Grant preached, and I heard is was good.  I hope someone podcaste the sermon, although it does not look like it has been posted yet.

Today we begin the trek to Montana.

Posted via email from Mark's posterous

Saturday, July 04, 2009

5 great from last years Brazil trip





the end group shot


four on a wall promife


Mark Kraakevik
The EDGE Colorado - live the message

We all have demons, don't face your alone***
"Faith is our relationship to and with God. And it is given life and meaning in our relationship to and with each other."


Mark Kraakevik
The EDGE Colorado - Live The Message

To live is Christ, to die is gain.


See and download the full gallery on posterous

Posted via email from Mark's posterous

Friday, July 03, 2009

brazil flag_country

Posted via email from Mark's posterous

Brazil Trip Info

Hey friends,

Our missions team is leaving for Brazil in one week.  This time the team includes two teens, one seminary student and Pastor Mark.  They leave on July 10th for a 12 day trip.  They will travel to Sao Paulo, Bra, which is the third largest city in the world, and then go about 2 hours north of that city to the city of Ribeirao Preto.  There they will join about 100 Brazilian teens in a week long outreach event.  They will spend our mornings studying the Bible, and the teaching of Jesus, and then in the afternoon, some will make door to door visits while others will lead an afternoon kids club.  In the evening, the group will show a movie about Jesus on a portable screen in one of several local parks.  Pastor Mark will be one of several preachers that will share the good news that Jesus offers freedom from sin and death with the crowds that gather. 

If you want to support our team, they would love your prayers and donations.  We have currently raised $2,000.  We still need to raise an additional $1,000 to cover the cost of our plane tickets.  We also have $450 in visa expenses.  Checks can be made out to The EDGE Colorado.  Please send your support to PO Box 620489, Littleton CO 80162.

Thanks for helping us make a difference in the lives of familes in Brazil,
Mark Kraakevik

Mailing address
The EDGE Colorado
PO Box 620489, Littleton, CO 80162


Street Address
7870 So. Garrison, Litteton, CO 80128


The Colorado Services
Sunday, 10:08AM

Mark Kraakevik
To live is Christ, to die is gain.


Posted via email from Mark's posterous

golf with the jefsons

Posted via SMS from Mark's posterous