Here Comes the Sun

I have to be honest, I don’t love the Beatles (I know, I’m a rebel), but as I watch Winter turn to Spring, I hear the lyrics of Here Comes the Sun…”Little Darling, it’s been long cold lonely winter” in my head. This winter has kind of felt like that, right? The cold, and gloomy, and of the lack of life have been everywhere. It seems no matter where I turn, I hear stories of struggle. From the shooting in Kenya, to Isis, to illnesses, and people who have so much life to live leaving this earth too soon. Winter, has been upon us for so long and it at times has felt so lonely. With all the tragedy we can start to wonder where God is.

And then Easter happens. We are reminded that with Jesus’ death we are give new life, and we understand that Spring was always in God’s plan. From the death of winter comes the new life of Spring. Hope. New beginnings. A chance to start fresh.

As Spring slowly begins to wake the earth up, and grass gets greener and plants start to bloom, we see God’s fingerprints everywhere. If He keeps the small delicate flowers blooming, and he cares about the tiniest sparrow, certainly he is at work in our lives. Even when, or maybe especially when, we feel like we are in a season of unending Winter.

The blooming of Spring makes me feel strangely brave. Like the possibilities are endless and that we can change this world into something beautiful. Something that looks more like the Kingdom of God and less like the heartbreak we currently see across our papers and TV screens. I want to urge to look for the opportunities that might be right in front of you this season. Maybe you are looking to get involved at Crossroads, maybe you’re looking to serve somewhere in your community, or maybe you’re just looking for community and people do life with or maybe you’re looking for freedom from the past.

Whatever you feel you’re needing in your life be brave and pursue it, God will be faithful through it. The ice is slowing melting, and the sun is coming! While I don’t lose my mind over the Fab 4, i appreciate the hopefulness of this song, it’s a beautiful reminder of how Spring always comes, and God is always faithful.

If you’re interested in finding a place to serve, you can find some great opportunities in our GO catalog, here.

I also want to remind you ladies that on April 20th at 6:30 pm, we’ll be doing The Table for a second time at the Cottage Grove Campus. It’s a great opportunity to connect and get to know other women! You can register, here.

We’re also kicking off a 2 week series called “the After Party” this weekend!

Also, if you have never heard the song “Here Comes the Sun,” you can listen to it here, sung by Paul Simon, who I love a million times more than the Beatles.  Have a great weekend!


Lisa Adams,


Simple, As it Should Be

I really like New Year’s Day. I think there is something beautiful about a seemingly clean slate, unwritten futures, and the possibility of anything happening. I like living in a world of endless possibility.

You should know, though. I’m terrible at resolutions. Absolutely the worst. I make a list of them and then….i forget about it when life gets back into normal rhythms and then i have an uncrossed off list of things i wanted to accomplish, and that never feels good.

Over the last couple of years, I’ve been picking one or two words I want to focus on through out the year. It helps me be intentional, it’s doable, and above all else, it’s simplified.

Our current series, Simple,  has really gotten me thinking about getting down to the simple of roots of what Jesus taught us. We are called to love. Love God. Love people. That is simple, right? Well, yes. But sometimes it’s hard to love people, right? Like sometimes hurt, and being right, and brokenness get in the way and we forget to love people. And relationships suffer because of it.

That’s why, this year, the word I’ve chosen to focus on is, grace. Jesus extended grace to everyone.Everyone. including the people who hated him. Shouldn’t I try to extend grace to everyone, too? Even the people who have hurt me, or don’t like me? Isn’t there more to their story, too?

I also think it’s important to extend grace to ourselves. Currently, I’m awful at this. I’m super hard on myself all the time. Sometimes we’re in the refining fire, and some times we are living the dream. It’s important to remember that Jesus is at work in every season. If i used more grace with myself in and the people around me, who knows how things might change. I think, thought it will bring me closer to being more like Jesus, and it will strengthen my relationships.

Speaking of relationships, we all have them, right? They all take work. Some more than others. On January 23rd and 24th Crossroads hosting the RefineUS-Marriage Conference, hosted by Justin and Trisha Davis, authors of Beyond Ordinary. Now, don’t let the “marriage conference” part scare you. Currently, I’m as single as you can be and I’m really excited about it. We are going to figure out what good relationships look like. How to have them, and how to navigate them when everything feels wrong. Those tools are universal. So, if you’ve been married and aren’t any more (for whatever reason), if you want to get married, you’re newly married, or if you’ve been married for a million years, COME! There is something to be gained for everyone! It’ll be the best $10 you’ll spend this January. Maybe even this year!

We’ll see you this weekend for week two of Simple!


Nicole Case
Web Administrator

Being Brave and Saying Yes

There are a lot of words that you could use to describe me, and I’m sure if you asked my family and friends they’d give you a laundry list of descriptors, among them surely would include things like “sassy” and “funny.” I doubt, though, that “brave” would make the top 10.  I don’t think I’m what you would think of as “traditionally brave.”

I think the bravest thing I’ve ever done is say “yes” to Jesus.  Saying yes to a life that might look different that anything I would have expected. Saying yes to the messy of the world. Saying yes to deeply rooted relationships. Saying yes to be part of something so much bigger than me. It has changed in me in ways I’m still discovering.

Everyone’s brave is different, but no less important. Some yeses have led people across the world to serve people who speak a completely different language. Others, have made space in their home and heart through adoption. Still others reach out in their community, building deep relationships with the people down the block.

I’ve realized that bravery is: being open and willing to let your life be changed through God.  Saying yes to what’s God’s asking. Saying yes to love people when it’s hard, when it’s messy and when it’s inconvenient.

This weekend at Crossroads Woodbury and Cottage Grove we have over 30 Non-profits and organization who will be in the auditorium willing to help you say your next yes. Come and meet the people and places that are making positive differences in lives both locally and across the world. Come and ask questions, get inspired and be brave enough to say “YES” to something.  Don’t forget to grab a Missions Catalog as well, for even more opportunities to serve.

Crossroads is excited to have these organizations with us this weekend. We believe in the work their doing, we love how they are saying yeses in hard places and we are all invited along on their adventures.

I can’t wait to hear about all the ways you’ve said yes to being brave and how it’s changed you and the world for the better.

Excited to blaze these trails with you!


Nicole Case
Web Administrator 

Football and Jesus

Do you remember your first “real” sports game?  You know, the one. It’s a team from a different school. You have a sweet uniform. The score counts. You will walk away a winner or a loser.  And you have the potential to make a mistake and/or make a brilliant play.

My youngest son plays his first football game this Saturday. He’s so excited to play a game!  As his mom, I’m pretty excited too!   I love seeing him train and practice to prepare for Saturday. I know the years of flag football and nights spent hanging around the field will pay off with the lessons learned from football. Some of my favorite lessons so far:

  1.  Your equipment matters. Your helmet and pads are critical for protecting yourself.  They also need to fit right so they don’t inhibit your ability to play the game.
  2. Head up. You have to keep your head up when tackling so that you don’t hurt yourself or others.
  3. Teamwork. Everyone has a position to play. Not everyone will make a touch down or carry the ball. But every position is critical.
  4. Perseverance. You have to keep on pushing the ball forward. It may be yard by yard or it might be a long toss down the field, but you have to keep working on it. If you lose a game, you have to show up for practice on Monday and try again.
  5. Discipline. It starts with basic skills and as your mastery improves, there are layers added. Learning how to block, tackle, and read a play all come with practice. You repeat things over and over so that it becomes automatic.   You improve physically and mentally each time you practice. You gain confidence and your body is more physically fit.

Sitting on the sidelines, I’ve realized that there are similarities in football and my faith.  My Bible, my trust in God, my friends, my daily Bible readings, and the time spent putting my faith in action are all critical to me growing as a Christian. I have to “practice” and be disciplined and I need others to be my team mates.

I’ll let you know what lessons we learned after this weekend!


Lisa Adams,
Director of Missions and Care

Being the Body

I’m so thankful for amazing weekends. Those kind of weekends that when you get to the end of it, you have nothing but smiles and gratefulness.

This past weekend was one of those amazing weekends. Last weekend, Jeremiah (my husband of 10 years) and I had a date day, no kids, no home projects, just the two of us spending time together. Part of our day was spent serving together.   For us, it’s one of the things that we love to do.   When Pastor Phil talks about everyone being a different part of the body, Jeremiah and I really identify.  We are so different!   But, the way that we work together, we get amazing things done!

I’m a type A, analytical sort.  I like to take a problem and solve it.  I administrate.

Jeremiah is a work horse.   He likes to do.   He helps.   He wants to chop down a tree.

When we volunteer and serve in our sweet spots, there is something special that happens.   We see each other in a way we have taken for granted.  We reconnect with each other.  We are thankful for the opportunity to serve and help others.  The other thing that happens is we have the privilege of helping move God’s kingdom. How lucky are we that we get to do that with and organization like Urban Ventures?!?  I don’t know if there is anything else that I would rather be a part of than helping bring a little bit up there, down here!

Crossroads has had an amazing June!  We’ve served all over the Twin Cities and into Wisconsin.  From free garage sales to mission trips.  We even got to catch up with our missionaries fromReynosa that have been visiting and giving us updates on the work they are doing.  The way that everyone has jumped in and served and given of their time is incredible.  I can see all the different parts of the body working so beautifully together and it’s exactly how God designed us to be.  I love being a part of this movement of Jesus-like people doing Jesus-like stuff!

And, while I have your attention, I’d like to ask you to join me in praying for a situation in Uganda that some of our team encountered last August on a trip with International Justice Mission. Please pray for Ramona,* a Ugandan widow and mother of six. Her late husband’s family stole the property she relies on to support her family, and one uncle made death threats against her children. Despite a solid legal case and Ramona’s bold testimony, a judge found the primary suspect not guilty late last year. IJM Uganda appealed that judgment, but the latest hearing was canceled when the suspect failed to show up. Please pray that the next hearing on July 4 will take place. Ask God to give the judge integrity and wisdom to declare the truth, and pray that Ramona and her children will no longer have to live in fear.


Lisa Adams
Director of Missions and Care 

What I’m reading this month
When Helping Hurts: How to Alleviate Poverty Without Hurting the Poor . . . and Yourself by Steve Corbett and Brian Fikkert

What I’m watching this monthMaria Prean:  Life Get’s Better and Better