All posts tagged: rancho community

A lot goes on behind the scenes when we launch a teaching series at Rancho Community – It never really starts the same way however. This particular series started with a trifecta of:

  1. A conversation with our lead pastor about a “foundational” teaching series for fall
  2. The song “Cornerstone“, which I actually heard for the first time by our Murrieta Campus worship team
  3. Coldplay’s Live 2012 album & concert art

From that point on I had a pretty good idea what this should look and feel like… just didn’t know exactly how.

The concept would be build around the stage backdrop design – that’s where everything would kind of spring from. I wanted to create a kind of back alley, block wall kind of feel – real strong and bold. So I started with something like this:

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Then I added grunge and some elements to the wall – and added the text.

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Then I added some fluorescent light bulbs…

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After that came the real fun – the hand-drawn art. For that, I just used a pencil first and then a sharpie…

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After the hand drawing it was time to get the images into Photoshop. I used my iPhone 4s to shoot the drawings and bring them into Photoshop.
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After some work with masking and coloring we ended up with this:

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No light bulbs on this version because this is the stage backdrop – 16′ x 32′ for our Temecula Campus. In order to do that we printed 16) 4′ x 8′ pieces and then our Tech team put it all together. Preparing the file for this almost killed my 2009 MBP…

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Here’s a pic of one of the 4×8’s right off the press…

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After the pieces were delivered, it was time for construction by our tech team…

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While our Temecula Campus got the real thing, our Murrieta Campus got the digital version…

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And last but not least, the bulletin…

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I’m hoping to get some better pics of the stage from both campuses – it’s awesome how the lighting really changes the look of this graphic.


Tonight I had the privilege of participating in a worship concert benefit for Newtown, CT. hosted by my church in partnership with many local churches & organizations. It was a great night of worship and unity in our community. My part was the prayer of “lament” at the front of the event. This is what I prepared – and are really my thoughts and prayer for those in Newtown and for our community:

When Tim began the conversation of putting together this evening, I immediately felt that this wasn’t just a good idea – it was the right idea. This is what the Church is for – we are a light in a dark place, a constant in an ever-changing world, and a place that stands together when things are seemingly falling apart. Tonight we stand together in the face of darkness and doubt and hopelessness – and in standing, together, we help one another – we help our community – we help our world…

Sometimes I think in a fast-paced world overloaded with media and communication we can move too quickly past the pain, the doubt and the uncertainty that we experience when a tragedy such as what happened on the morning of December 14th at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Where 20 children and 6 adults lost their lives and the cause of it all took his own life. We can’t help but ask questions like: “where was God in all this?”, “how could He allow this to happen?”, “how can any good possibly come from this?”

I’m not here to try and answer those questions. But I do want to in a very real way – give us all permission to ask those questions tonight. Part of tonight is just for that. It is to grieve: to allow our hearts to be soft and open. To think of those innocent children, those teachers and administrators and weep. To imagine the lives of parents, grandparents, brothers, sisters, friends, and first responders whose lives are now forever changed. To look at ourselves, our families and our own community and reflect on how this event has changed us. To take time to reflect on all this and look to God.

Let’s pray:

Psalm 130 begins, “From the depths of despair, O Lord, I call for your help. Hear my cry, O Lord. Pay attention to my prayer”.

Father – that’s where many of us find ourselves tonight when we reflect on the recent event in Newtown, CT. We grieve together. Our hearts break when we think of the lives lost – the lives of the truly innocent. Our minds wrestle with the evil that visited that school and the darkness that persists in this world. Sometimes we just don’t understand, or have the answers – we find ourselves not even knowing what or how to pray.

We ask for comfort tonight.
For comfort that only your Spirit can offer for the families of those who were at Sandy Hook that day. For lives lost, for lives laid down willingly, for lives that are now forever changed. You are the great comforter and ask believing that you are already at work in Newtown and surrounding communities.

We ask for healing.
So many lives have been torn apart. So much sadness and anger. Only you can bring true healing to Newtown and to our world. We pray that families will stay strong through their grieving. We pray that the community will come out of this tragedy with more love for one another and a love for You. We look with anticipation to the day when you right every wrong, when you’re Kindom truly comes on Earth as it is in Heaven.

We ask for faith.
We know that through Christ, we have been given all things – and that our faith is very real and secure. But in times like these when our faith is challenged, we feel weak and sometimes far from you. Even though we may be weak tonight, remind us that it is when we are weak that You are strong. Remind us tonight of your faithfulness and our position in Christ: redeemed, forgiven, righteous, sons and daughters of your Kingdom.

As we stand together tonight, may we have the strength to grieve together, to sing together, to hope together, and to be encouraged in the face of darkness to be the light – that by your Spirit we would be a stronghold of faith, justice and mercy.


Here’s some photos from tonight…

Great weekend @ranchocommunity & @ranchomurrieta. I was in Murrieta this weekend and did the welcome/updates. We introduced a new song, “The One Who Saves“, followed by “Forever Reign” – as we were singing I was thinking of how these lyrics:

we have found our hope
we have found our peace
we have found our rest
in the One who Loves
He will light the way
He will lead us home
as we offer all
to the One who saves us

Along with these lyrics:

I’m running to your arms
I’m running to your arms
the riches of your love
will always be enough

Those songs speak so well of the truths we are trying to convey each weekend:

  1. That it is God that does the work of saving and of (here comes a big word) sanctification.
  2. That we “run into His arms” as he is our Heavenly Father and his Holy Spirit empowers us to live out the gospel.
I shared from Matthew 10 as a follow up encouragement to our time of singing together:
But not a single sparrow can fall to the ground without your Father knowing it. And the very hairs on your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are more valuable to God than a whole flock of sparrows.
The encouragement for our church was that we tend to work towards pleasing God, trying to be good parents, spouses, employees, etc. most times out of our own energy, and many times we fail. God is reminding us that he knows us intimately, and wants us to trust him, with our every day lives – to run into his arms and let him be enough. To really live out of the overflow of God’s love and grace in our lives.

Check the pics.

Mark Gungor at Rancho Community Temecula

Today I read Karl’s blog and remembered when he used to not blog. And I used to bug everybody (and I mean everybody) about blogging. Oh how the tables have turned. I feel like I need to stand up and say, “My name is Alex and I haven’t blogged in a month”.

I used to do mind-dumps when I didn’t have something really well thought out. So, inspired by Karl, here we go.

  • I got to hang out @ranchocommunity all weekend, I did the updates and introduced Mark Gungor a couple times, which was cool.
  • The Superbowl was kind of a let down. I went from rooting for the Giants (because I’ve always disliked the Patriots), to pulling for the Patriots because Miles was so into them. He knows the team, runs around talking about Welker, Gronk, Hernandez, Woodhead, Green-Ellis, etc.
  • Learned about the sad but inspiring story of former Saint’s safety, Steve Gleason.
  • I thought the story about Vince Wilfork was excellent too.
  • Learned more about Matt Barkley – I already was a fan because of the fact that he didn’t go pro, and how he did it:
    “Barkley, 21, informed Kiffin and the rest of the coaching staff at his Newport Beach home on Wednesday evening about his decision. He presented Kiffin with an ornament that said, “One More Year.” Kiffin said at the conclusion of USC’s season last month that the only way Barkley would return to school would be if he decided to be a “special Trojan” and put the university’s interests ahead of his own. That’s what he did Thursday, Kiffin said.” (maybe I’ll become a USC fan?)
  • Kind of cool to watch Xenia, Jeff, Karl, Brian, Kevin & others from our town on NBC filmed at Rancho.
  • As for the commercials… this was my only favorite.
  • I desperately need a haircut.
  • We’re a couple weeks away from becoming a family of six! I never dreamed that would happen and am so thankful for our family – and my wife is A-MA-ZING!
And finally, courtesy of Karl’s inspiration, enjoy some David Gilmore:

This week and weekend at Rancho Community were insane. Flat out insane.

  • Our school is growing in the middle of a recession.
  • Our first inaugural High School football team is 3-0.
  • I get to help brand this school and it’s teams – we’re having so much fun!
  • Our church has two very healthy campuses and a church plant and I get to help dream of more!
  • I get to oversee the worship teams at Rancho and I’ve watched them grow and develop so much over the past year, and watched our church engage like never before.
  • I get to help develop designs (series art, stage design, spirit wear, etc.), communication tools (facebook, twitter, websites, working with local press, etc.), and growth & organization tools to help Rancho grow.

I also get the opportunity to work with some crazy talented, and humble people, people like (in no particular order):

  • Scott Treadway, our lead pastor. Well, of course I’m going to put him first – he might read this! And anything I say will sound like I’m placating, but this guy’s the real deal – great communicator, great leader. (and sometimes he tweets).
  • Mike Johnson, our school’s superintendent – sounds all important, but he’s really a down-to-earth guy and a great friend.
  • Julianna Morlet, one of our worship leaders – who also happens to be a pretty dang talented blogger too.
  • Jeff Johnson, another one of our worship leaders – the guy who puts it all together.
  • Brian Howley, our Tech Arts Director – the guy who, with his team makes it all happen.
  • Ryan Beaver, one of my best friends who just so happens to be leading things over at our Murrieta Campus. (oh yeah, he doesn’t really tweet, or have a blog… yet.)
  • Chris Stout, another great friend & our Tech support in Murrieta – one of the nicest, hard-working guys I’ve ever met.
  • Marcy Rossi. Her ‘official’ title is ‘Executive Assistant’, but she builds, designs, imagines, and actually follows through. Let’s just say she built the 4D stage. by. her. self.
  • Don Hallworth, our Executive Pastor of Ministries – this guy’s got more wisdom in his pinky than most people do in their entire body.
  • Chad Fergerstrom, another one of our worship leaders – this guy brings order to chaos and makes Murrieta smooth every week.
  • Robert Powell, another worship leader – I’ve made it no secret, my favorite worship leader, of all time. Don’t be afraid of the beard! Seriously, a gifted guy.
  • Casey Riley, IT Director – this guy could probably do anything, and he’s here making things happen all over the place – crazy talented.
  • And some of our amazing worship team members: Travis, Emily, Tyson, Justin, Jules, Brian, Jason, Ashley, Eric, Mikey, Joe, Crystal-Lee, Madison, Andrew.
  • And of of course our tech team (many of whom I’ve yet to get to know!): Darrin, Randy, Michael, Dylan, John L, John J, Steven, Hanyu, Paul, Gary, Lance, Jeff, Adam & Matt.
  • Oh yeah and this weekend we had the illustrious Rich Kirkpatrick on keys in Murrieta!

There’s a lot more people who make our organization go-round, including tons of volunteers who serve faithfully every weekend. This weekend was just a good reminder of what a privilege it is to be a part of something like Rancho.

How was your weekend?