a copy of a copy

thought mashups from garret shelsta

Combining thoughts copied from other places

Pastor of College and Young Adults at Christ the King

One of the ekklesia facilitators 

Bellingham, Wa

Thought Mashup 2.17.16 - Vampire Honeymoon music, Pinoy Karaoke, Harps that are loud, God's Faithfulness and the #EkklesiaRetreat

I am sorry that this has been the first blog in a little bit. Between seeing one of my best friends get married and having incredible time #ekklesiaretreat time has been a little hard to come by. But as I have been thinking about these two big events it got me reflecting on some things. 

I love cover songs and I love mashups. I have never been really able to move too far beyond my love of them actually. That is part of the reason this blog is called “thought mashups”

For Example… this is one of my favorite things to put on when I am writing a my Ekklesia messages. 

I have often times wondered what occurred in my life that has developed a deep love for mashups and covers and I have come to a few different conclusions. 

  1. I am filipino and for some reason (which may be the subject of a future blog post) my people love singing songs made famous by other people (See here, here, here, and here). 
  2. I love the idea of taking something familiar and putting it in a strange place so you can hear it again for the first time. 
  3. I really enjoy when things from different contexts get pushed together to make something new. 

I asked the community to process how the Lord revealed himself to the community this weekend and the last of those three was my launching pad for processing how that happened for me. 

Through an incredible and grace filled set of events I somehow got connected to a community of people in Boulder, CO that had crazy incredible musical voices in it. Two of those voices,  Dave Wilton and Caleb Killian, were here in Washington this weekend.

I took this picture of Dave and my son Jonah on Sunday morning. 


Jonah is my only child that wasn’t born in Colorado and the only one of my kids that Dave hasn’t met. And watching him meet my son was one of the moment that made me thoroughly thankful this weekend. 

Dave Wilton is one of the contributors to the worship duo Loud Harp (Asher, the other half of that outfit has a special place in my life too but that too will need to wait to another time). Dave also moonlights writing songs that prepare PNW vampires for their wedding night. Most importantly, he is one of the most incredible pastors and fathers I have had the opportunity to become friends with.  Dave comes from a space in my life where I was in the process of healing from some pretty deep wounds. He was part of a tapestry of people who were instrumental in helping my family and I walk into the restoration that prepared us to move up to Bellingham. This weekend the songs that he wrote which helped me heal gave language of worship to the community that those songs prepared me to lead.

 Two spaces in one space making something new. 

This is my friend Caleb Killian


This is my friend Caleb Killian and some his friends at the first ever “Space” retreat in 2008 in Estes Park, Colorado. 


When I was Calebs youth director in Colorado I was still very much broken and hurting. Our little youth group was a place that I got begin seeing that God was not done with me yet. Having him here, still following the Lord and leading us in worship, was continued proof to me that God is the one that sustains the work of the Church because God knows I had very little to do with how incredible Caleb has turned out. Having Caleb here helping with his music create an architecture or frame for God’s presence to dwell, helped me see how constant and faithful the Lord is and reminder that God is never finished with us.

 Two spaces in one space making something new. 

Jonah, Ekklesia, Dave and Caleb in one space all together. 

This mashup up moment for me was was a different one for me… it was simply being reminded that I have been in very different places and spaces over the last 6 years. And this past weekend I had people from all of those different spaces in my life, who saw different versions of me, together for a weekend and for me it was a simple reminder of how God is and was present in all of those moments and how faithful our God is. 

It reminded me that the goodness of our God is seeking to restore all things. For a weekend, I got to be surrounded by people who the Lord used and is using to put me back together, and for a few short hours, they got to do the same for the community of people that I now have the incredible blessing to co-work with God’s Spirit to help facilitate. It was these two separate spaces in my life all combining to create these moments of incredible restorative beauty that reminds me that God presence is our only good. And our good Father wants the very best things for His kids. 

God helped restore my life for the better.  
These two (and other Caleb and Asher) helped reminded me of that this weekend. 
And I am very thankful.

I also am reminded that even though this moment was sweet, it  doesn't mean that all the paths we encounter are easy ones to walk. But without those “I just can’t go on” moments … these mountain top ones would not be nearly so incredible. 

Thanks for letting the nature of this post be introspective. And please forgive my self indulgent reflection if it wasn't to your taste or what you have come to expect from me.

I will be sure to stir the theological pot more in the future. I may have a post brewing about the theological meaning of Kendrick's Grammy performance and Beyoncé's Super Bowl Show....

We will just have to see.