merry Christmas eve

I am enjoying some Christmas carols and an eggnog latte while I wrap up my message for tonights worship services at fresh life.  This morning the girls and I popped in the first disc of Jesus of Nazareth, which is a yearly tradition in my house.  (Disc two finds it’s way into the dvd player the week of Easter.) What a wonderful time of the year.  I am so thankful that God invaded our planet!  I hope that for all of us, like the Wise Men, Christmas would be marked by our desire to worship Jesus.

Matthew 2:2 “Where is he who has been born King of the Jews?  For we have come to worship Him.”

To inspire your worship–here is a vid that was recorded last wednesday night at Skull Church when Kristian Stanfill and his band showed up from Atlanta to lead worship. He is one of the most passionate and high energy guys I have ever seen on stage.   He will be leading worship alongside Chris Tomlin and David Crowder at Passion 2010 this year. This is one of Kristian’s songs called Kingdom that is on his most recent album, Attention.

Merry Christmas!


Last week we had a little, early Thanksgiving treat when Danyew performed at skull church. His music is incredible. I heard of him this summer when Phil Wickham played and then hung around for a little Montana vay-cay. We were hanging out and I had asked him who he thought we should look into booking for skull church, especially talented artists that are emerging onto the music scene, but haven’t been heard from a lot yet. Phil Danyew was one of the first that he mentioned and we booked him right away.

He is on Sparrow records, just got off David Crowder’s Church Music tour and last week his new song, wake up, was selected as the iTunes discovery download of the week. If you haven’t heard his music yet, do yourself a favor and check it out! Both him and his drummer were rad guys and integrated really well into the service and seemed stoked to be apart of what God was doing that night. Their holiday travel back home to SoCal became an unexpected adventure when fog rolled in at the end of the night–part and parcel of being a traveling musician–but I appreciate their sacrifice all the same. Here is one of the songs, called silver lining, from their set at skull church.

NBC News Story about fresh life

Here is a story that ran on our local NBC news broadcast on Friday, November 13th. We hope people that don’t know Christ saw it and will want to check out the church! Super fun.
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Run Kid Run

Last night was a great night at skull church. We continued our fire & ice series, studying the life of Elijah, and saw people respond to the gospel invitation making professions of faith in Christ. (always awesome to watch!) And we also had a special musical guest, Run Kid Run, who traveled from Illinois to join us.

They were originally scheduled to play last week but due to weather in Denver they were unable to fly in. They felt terrible but we assured them that it didn’t make a difference. (One of the benefits of not announcing artists ahead of time.)

They played a few songs during the service but also did a bonus 30 minute set at the end of the night and it was rad. Afterwards I caught up with them for a little interview, enjoy.
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Continue reading…

Fire & Ice

At skull church we have begun our third series, Fire and Ice, a study of the life of Elijah. He was a man who was powerfully used by God. For me, the very mention of his name evokes thoughts of intensity and action. But he was human like we are and his life was marked by periods of melancholy and fear as well. I have always been intrigued by his life and am super pumped to journey through his mysterious and eventful story.

God Rocks the Punk!

We kicked skull church off with a series called, the bloody death of Jesus Christ. With a macro-lens we focused on the events of skull hill. For ten weeks we considered the cross and paid careful attention to what Jesus did for us. It was powerful and moving to study His sufferings. It was also wonderful each week to see people responding to the message of the cross and make decisions for Christ–95 in all!

This week we started a new series in the book of Jonah called God Rocks the Punk! Because when we act like punks He is willing to rock our worlds. Last week we looked at the first 3 verses of chapter 1 and saw Jonah run from God. Tonight we will see that he didn’t run far or fast enough…and we will see God hurl a gnarly storm Jonah’s way in a message I am calling, the takedown.

Here is the vid from the first message in case you missed it:

John Reuben at Skull Church

Tonight was a great night at Skull Church. We finished our series on the bloody death of Jesus Christ. For the tenth week in a row we focused on the wonderful cross.  There are 175 mentions of Jesus’ death in the New Testament and a massive portion of the gospels focus on the events surrounding the crucifixion. I can think of no better way we could have begun this new service than by paying attention to this event that is of such monumental importance.

Tonight we studied all the phenomena that accompanied his death. (The veil being split, a great earthquake, a bunch of dead people cruising around and a centurion’s salvation)  We  looked at Jesus’ burial itself and of course we ended the series  with the good news of the resurrection. He didn’t stay dead–He is Risen!  At the invitation we saw 10 people make decisions to publicly profess Christ as Savior. So sweet.

We also heard some special music by John Reuben. John is a really cool guy, very funny. He shared a few songs before the message and then did a half hour concert after the service was over.  People were stoked.
John Reuben
With John Reuben before the night started.

A subdued side of Spoken

Last week Matt Baird, the lead singer of the band, Spoken dropped by skull church for a quick accoustic set. I had never met him before but he is a super cool guy.  Also, in the following pic he looks at least 79% tougher than I do. Continue reading…

Skull Church Press Release

For Immediate Release

June 15, 2009

More Information: Coy Trammel- (406) 257-3339

KALISPELL, MONTANA – What does an Arab bus station, a skull and a church in Montana have in common?

All three play a part in an intriguing concept to present the timeless salvation story of Jesus’ death on a unique platform.

“When I was preparing a teaching on the crucifixion story four years ago in Southern California,” Fresh Life Pastor Levi Lusko said, “I wanted a new take on a familiar story. It occurred to me that Jesus died in Jerusalem at the place of the skull, Golgatha. I noticed that many board shorts and surf clothes people wear had skulls on them.”

In John 19:17-18 the Bible says, “Carrying the cross by himself, he (Jesus) went to the place called Place of the Skull. There they nailed him to the cross.”

“The most beautiful thing that has ever happened in history occurred in a place of death—God died in our place.  Skull Church is a platform to amplify the message of what happened on that skull shaped hill to a lost world,” Lusko said.

From there, Lusko developed the concept of

‘Skull Church,’ which will kick off Wednesday night, June 17that Fresh Life Church in Kalispell, Montana and streaming live on the internet for people all over the country.

One of the most important events in the Bible, the death of Jesus Christ, is thought to have taken place just outside the

ancient walls of the Old City of Jerusalem.

At the time of Jesus, Golgotha stood just above a busy thoroughfare, just as it is now. Because today, a bustling Arab bus station operates at Golgotha, blank faced passengers roll in and out under the watchful gaze of a rock skull, the hill that Jesus died on.

Skull Church will feature an unusual presentation surrounding a church service, but the main event will be very familiar for Fresh Life: An in-depth Bible study.

“The platform may be edgy, the music and media aggressive, but the heart of the night is to lead the audience into a better understanding of what the Bible says,” assistant pastor Coy Trammel said.  And unlike some church services where an announcement is made to turn off mobile phones, at skull church phones can be used during the preaching to text-message in questions they have about the topic.

“The lights will be rocked out during the music, but you can be sure the auditorium lights will be on bright during the study for better Bible reading,” Lusko commented.

Skull Church is an unorthodox method of presenting an orthodox message. Lusko said the opening series will be,

‘The Bloody Death of Jesus Christ,’ a  review of the torture endured by Jesus to pay for the sins of the world.

Fresh Life meets at the historic Strand Theatre three times each weekend and then for Skull Church on Wednesday’s at 7 PM.  Lusko came to Kalispell in January of 2007 to start the church. Rapid growth has made it possible for over 1000 adults to attend each weekend.  The impact and response of Skull Church remains to be seen, but as Lusko says, the gospel is for everyone, and, ‘Wednesday night at Fresh Life may not feel like your grandmother’s church, but she’s welcome to come too!”