01.01.10 – happy new year

NYE @ camp mission meadows 2009

Jess and I brought in the new year with over one hundred kids grades 7-12 from six different churches at Camp Mission Meadows.

Andy Frudd from Bemus Point Methodist brought an awesome message about allowing God to unload our backpacks full of junk and start the new year fresh. I presented the simple gospel message of God’s love and plan and an awesome time of worship followed led by Ben and Liz Blick.

Andy encouraged the kids to pray for one another. A teenage boy whom I didn’t know ran up to me sobbing and just clung on to me. I had the privelage to minister God’s love and truth to him as he spewed tears and snot all over my shoulder:)

What an awesome way to bring in the New Year.

God I ask that 2010 would be a year that we realize how much You love us and that you have so much more in store for us than we’re currently living in and that You’d free us up to walk in those things.

JIM baker

LisaJanuary 1, 2010 - 6:20 pm

i think some of the most privileged moments I’ve had involve someone spewing snot and tears all over my shoulder. honest.

jim bakerJanuary 2, 2010 - 5:45 am

yay for snot and tears!

AmazedJanuary 4, 2010 - 5:29 am

I am excited you are upgrading your photo equip. Can’t wait to see photos from Africa. LoisBentley

jim bakerJanuary 4, 2010 - 9:43 am

thanks lois!

12.31.09 – how to change your blog layout

A screen shot of what the old layout looked like…
(yes its off center, thats what happenes when the picture is to big for your layout)

A few people have asked how I changed my layout so here’s what I did.

Pranne Loffer gave me this link this past summer after I asked her the same question.

For the new layout I’m using 900px as my outer wrapper and 900px as my main wrapper with no sidebar. Just mess with all of those numbers and see what each one does and see what you like.

Hope that helps? If not feel free to ask more questions and I will do what I can.

I changed the comment section so everyone should be able to comment now too. (you should try it out!)

Happy New Year!
JIM baker

AaronDecember 31, 2009 - 5:14 am

I can comment now?

jim bakerDecember 31, 2009 - 5:15 am

haha you can indeed!

i changed it from that drop down box menu thing to this…

did you ever end up getting camino?

Kaarin SJanuary 4, 2010 - 12:39 pm

two million comments… hahahha

jim bakerJanuary 4, 2010 - 2:11 pm

haha :) glad you like it. it makes me feel good about my blog ๐Ÿ˜‰

12.30.09 – just come home

I saw this video on Perry Noble’s blog which was recommended to me by Justin Joyner at starbucks yesterday.

I went up to The Flip Side last night in Bemus to lead worship for the Camp Mission Meadows Staff Reunion. Their theme for the summer was “Now What?!” And 4 months after camp is over the theme really hits home. As I prepared for the time of ministry God led me to the story of the prodigal son.

Luke 15:11-24
Jesus continued: “There was a man who had two sons. The younger one said to his father, ‘Father, give me my share of the estate.’ So he divided his property between them. “Not long after that, the younger son got together all he had, set off for a distant country and there squandered his wealth in wild living. After he had spent everything, there was a severe famine in that whole country, and he began to be in need. He longed to fill his stomach with the pods that the pigs were eating, but no one gave him anything. “When he came to his senses, he said, ‘How many of my father’s hired men have food to spare, and here I am starving to death! I will set out and go back to my father and say to him: Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son; make me like one of your hired men.’ So he got up and went to his father. “But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him. “The son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and against you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.’ “But the father said to his servants, ‘Quick! Bring the best robe and put it on him. Put a ring on his finger and sandals on his feet. Bring the fattened calf and kill it. Let’s have a feast and celebrate.

What great imagery into the character of God. God does not have his arms crossed, waiting to scold us when we return in repentance from our wandering, He leaps off the porch and runs towards us the moment we are in sight.

Secondly the son, says that he’s no longer worthy to be called his son. The father’s response? To give him everything that his son deserved, because no matter what this son did, the father KNEW that his son was still his son. I long for us to really know the extravagant love of the Father. And to know who we are as sons and daughters of the king of kings.

“Identity creates destiny” – Kris Vallaton

JIM baker

AnonymousJanuary 1, 2010 - 4:13 am

Oh! that we would know who we are and the greatness of his love. Let the past be and move on to a new year in God’s love

jim bakerJanuary 1, 2010 - 10:02 am


12.29.09 – Robert Park… wow he did it.

taken at a Korean-American young adult missions conference 2007

If you don’t know what I’m talking about… the article is here.

But basically Robert Park a 28 year old Korean America went into North Korea and was detained. “He did this to bring awareness to the situation in North Korea, alert the churches around the world to the atrocities and human rights violations โ€” not pay lip service, and (to) do something about it,” Benson said in Tucson. “Drastic situations call for drastic measures.”

Well… you’ve got my attention. But… what do we do now?

I always knew koreans were crazy. Go to any 4am morning prayer meeting and you’ll see. Crazy in a good way. Most of the time.:)I have some Korean-American friends that have done missions work in North Korea. They don’t really talk about it much, like its no big deal.

I was thinking just the other day… where are the revolutionary leaders? Where are the people like Dr. Martin Luther King who had a dream and changed history? I don’t feel like we’ve seen a leader like that since, maybe we have and I’m just ignorant to it.

Leave your thoughts in the comment section.

JIM baker

A quote from Hotel Rwanda.

I am glad that you have shot this footage and that the world will see it. It is the only way we have a chance that people might intervene.

Yeah and if no one intervenes, is it still a good thing to show?

How can they not intervene when they witness such atrocities?

I think if people see this footage they’ll say, “oh my God that’s horrible,” and then go on eating their dinners.

12.28.09 – provision

jamestown audubon 2008

Matt 6:26Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they?

Mark 8:14-21 read it in context here.
14The disciples had forgotten to bring bread, except for one loaf they had with them in the boat. 15“Be careful,” Jesus warned them. “Watch out for the yeast of the Pharisees and that of Herod.”

16They discussed this with one another and said, “It is because we have no bread.”

17Aware of their discussion, Jesus asked them: “Why are you talking about having no bread? Do you still not see or understand? Are your hearts hardened? 18Do you have eyes but fail to see, and ears but fail to hear? And don’t you remember? 19When I broke the five loaves for the five thousand, how many basketfuls of pieces did you pick up?”
“Twelve,” they replied.

20“And when I broke the seven loaves for the four thousand, how many basketfuls of pieces did you pick up?”
They answered, “Seven.”

21He said to them, “Do you still not understand?”

* * * * *

Uh, Jesus… yeah… I guess I still don’t understand.

I’ve seen your hand of provision over and over again. Radical miracles… crazy provision. The kind of stories that people put in books.

I knew you told me that I’d have a new camera to go to Africa with, but it just didn’t look possible so I began to doubt. But in your PERFECT timing, you gave me a gift, something you knew I really wanted, to celebrate YOUR birthday.

Our financial situation looked BLEAK for 2010, but in your faithfulness, you are providing more than enough.

As a son of God, I don’t live under the curse where I sow and do not reap.

I do not even live in sowing and reaping, where I solely reap what I sow.

I live in Your blessing, where Your GOODNESS is made known to me in every area of my life and as a GOOD father, YOU provide for me.*

“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” – Matt 6:33

JIM baker

*a Kris Vallaton teaching

KateDecember 28, 2009 - 6:02 pm

Hey!! I’ve been visiting your blog for a little while now…my name is Kari and I work with your sis, Jeannie and she’s always talking about y’all!! She gave me your blog address and here I am! She told me about your NEW camera(?) and told me to come check it out…that is awesome, I’m slobbering and can’t wait to hear all about it!! :) LOVE your new layout, the header pict is totally cute! And so excited for y’all and your upcoming trip, AWESOME! Nice to “meet” you on here!! Have a great day!

jim bakerDecember 28, 2009 - 6:15 pm

kate! thanks for stopping by. My sis is great I miss her :) Yup, i’m getting a new camera soon indeed I’m pretty excited. Glad you like the new layout and the header pic my wife’s a babe :) talk with you soon!

12.28.09 – what the blog?!

a gift from my mother-in-law. it has a ball in it that lights up too.

Gary S Chapman tweeted recently a quote that he read in Collide Magazine.

“Use social media because you have something to say, not because you want to be heard.”

When I met with Stanley Leary this past summer and we were talking about blogging and push/pull marketing, he said that a blog had to offer people something for people to keep coming back.

Michael Hyatt, whose blog I just started reading wrote a blog entitled “Do you make these 10 mistakes when you blog?” Lets just say if this was a pop quiz… I’d fail. You can see the cached version here since his site is under construction for the new year.

But I’ve been chewing on all of this, I redesigned the layout of the blog because I want to be a better blogger.

I’m not sure this is at all what Rick Rohlin, the pastor of the church I work at, had in mind when he asked me to start a blog, but this is the result of “Hey Jim, why don’t you start a blog.”

The only blogs I ever looked at before starting this blog were photography blogs. I guess I did read real live preacher before I was into photography blogs though. The other blogs I’ve done in the past both had to do with photography. Well over half the blogs I read are photography blogs.
(If you’re an avid blog reader check out bloglines, I just set up an account yesterday and am loving it.)

The new layout visually sets it up to be a photography blog. But although a lot of the posts have had to do with photography, it can’t be constrained to JUST that. Good blogging would force me to have a separate blog for photography and another blog for everything else, whatever everything else is. Not happening.

So do I blog because I have something to say or because I want to be heard? Google analytics says I had 1472 visits in the past 30 days. 548 of those visits were absolutely unique visits. So I guess people are reading. But that doesn’t tell me why I’m writing.

If you’re a regular on my blog, what do I offer you that you keep coming back? What are you coming here to see? What do you want to see more of in the future? And if you had to sum up the three things we write/post about what would those be?
(yes WE my wife did post for the first time this month, probably the best post on the whole blog)

Leave your thoughts in the comment section. If you’re having problems leaving a comment try using a different internet browser, I know for a fact that firefox has problems with it. If you’re a mac user download camino. Its made by mozilla FOR mac.

I don’t think I’m ever going to be a good blogger. ๐Ÿ˜‰ This was WAY over 500 words.

JIM baker

jim bakerDecember 27, 2009 - 10:11 pm

yes i’m commenting on my own blog… and i just went through some of the comments and was trying to catch up on comments… i stopped when I saw dates from october… I guess step one of being a better blogger is to stay current with the comments…

12.27.09 – trusty and FAITHFUL

Canon 20d with EF-S 10-22mm f3.5-4.5 USM

EF-S 60mm f2.8 USM and EF 70-200 f4 usm

I woke up to an e-mail Christmas eve saying that someone wanted to buy my photography equipment. An amazing gift because now I can upgrade to PRO gear before I go to Africa in one month.

But I wanted to dedicate a post to the gear that I’ve pretty much learned to shoot on. My trusty Canon 20d.

Seth and Jamie wanted me to shoot their wedding in 2006 so they fronted me the money to get the gear. At the time I bought the 20d, an EF 28-105 f3.5-4.5 USM II and the 580ex flash.

Its been to 5 other countries with me.


The picture of the 20d has the 10-22 attached. It’s the lens that I shoot with most. I’ve actually realized lately that I’m really sick of the distortion that the super wide gives… but it did pretty good with landscapes. Below is a picture shot at 10mm.

Kailua Kona Hawaii 2008

The 60 was mainly used for portraits and macro stuff. And the 70-200 was used to ZOOM. I’ve had a couple of 50mm lenses in the past but didn’t see the need for one if I had a 60 in my bag.

Its been cool to go and look at professional photographers websites and see that they started out shooting with the 20d too. David duChemin’s ebook TEN has a picture on the first page that was taken with the 20d. I just read last night that Jasmine Star started out with a 20d. And one of our friends and supporters and professional photographer Rachel Barker started out with the 20d too.

I’ll be sure to give a full update on the NEW gear when it gets here.
JIM baker

colleenDecember 27, 2009 - 12:03 pm

new layout = kickin!!

jim bakerDecember 27, 2009 - 12:15 pm

thanks Colleen! when are we going to see a Colleen and Mike blog?

The RainwatersDecember 28, 2009 - 7:22 am

What equipment are you looking to buy?

jim bakerDecember 28, 2009 - 8:39 am

what do you think? :) I fell in love when you let me use yours at Mark’s wedding. 5dm2 here i come!!!

The RainwatersDecember 28, 2009 - 9:52 am

Ohh..you are going to LOOOVVEE it!!! Seth just shot a video with it, although it is taking him forever to render all the files, the video it takes is AMAZING, far better than our HD camcorders even! I’m soo excited for you! We should go shoot something together (the four of us)!

jim bakerDecember 28, 2009 - 10:27 am

i’m pumped about it… and yeah, we need to get together SOON I want to show you guys off camera lighting…

12.27.2009 – new blog layout

What REALLY seems to separate the boy blogs from the MAN blogs is simply LARGER pictures. So I moved some stuff around so I could accommodate larger pictures, got rid of the boring sidebar, and am using an awesome pic for our header of Jess and I by Pranne Loffer who was in my school of photography in 2008. Here’s another pic that she took of us in Columbia South Carolina this past July. Are you guys digging the new layout? I am:)

JIM baker

joan newhallDecember 27, 2009 - 3:15 am

Beautiful layout. I love those larger photos, especially the subjects. Nice work once again. Love, G

LisaDecember 27, 2009 - 10:29 am

nice layout and i love both the picture from July and the one as the title on top. you guys rock!

jim bakerDecember 27, 2009 - 9:52 pm

thanks grandma, and thanks lisa! yay for NEW!

The RainwatersDecember 28, 2009 - 9:54 am

love the lay out…how do you get your middle section to get wider? I’ve moved stuff around a lot and it doesn’t accommodate the x-large pictures, it cuts them off :(

jim bakerDecember 28, 2009 - 10:30 am

you’ve got to get in there and change the html… do a google search on it and you’ll find websites that will walk you through it.

hannahelaineDecember 30, 2009 - 6:35 pm

uh….i’ve been trying to figure out how to get my blog wide format like that for years. i’ve gotten it wider but i can’t figure out how to do that big and couldn’t find it on google either. why don’t you just share the love….eh?? please please please???

jim bakerDecember 31, 2009 - 4:37 am

hannah, i’ll post a blog about how to do it today since a bunch of ppl have asked…

12.22.09 – Christmas Newsletter!

Hey everyone, here is our Christmas Newsletter…
if you want a copy e-mailed to you so you can actually read it e-mail me requesting one jim@worshipplace.org

JIM and JESS baker:)

LisaDecember 26, 2009 - 4:27 pm

love the picture of you guys kissing behind the snowman & snowoman. :-) it’s cute. thanks for the update.

jim bakerDecember 27, 2009 - 9:52 pm

thanks lisa! its fun being able to do your own photoshoots.

12.20.2009 – Christmas and stuff

Jim and I watched this video clip the other day and I thought it was definitely worth sharing. Aside from the fact that it’s an entertaining twist on the typical nativity play, it completely changed my outlook on the Christmas story as we picture it. It hit me when the angels came in… and notice the chorus keeps repeating “i’ve been waiting my whole life for this one night.” I mean, how awesome is that? I have no idea how time works in heaven, but I am of the understanding that heavenly beings are at least aware of the passage of time here, and I bet they were up in heaven watching all of humanity waste away in our own sin and just waiting for the day when we would be redeemed, and then the day came!!! And think of the Jewish believers, the shepherds and even the wise men; all these people who have been anxiously anticipating the arrival of a savior who would bring them freedom. All that time waiting, hoping, and then finally to witness his arrival!I think that sense of excitement is completely lost on us. I mean, we get jazzed about waiting a year – or more likely – about a month for Christmas morning to arrive and that’s usually just so we can eat cookies and receive that expensive toy, phone, camera or whatever we’ve been wanting for the past six months. It’s easy to miss really, because Jesus already came for us. We don’t have to wait for anything. Which is actually probably for the best, as we all have short attention spans anymore anyways.

But these people were waiting for GENERATIONS… their WHOLE EXISTENCE for this one thing to happen! And when it does… can you even imagine the party in heaven?!? After all the build-up of excitement, the anticipation of joy… the celebration must have been unbelievable. I bet they danced their halos off. Literally. A completely unrestrained explosion of joy.
I’m all for reverence and honor and respect. But it’s an absolute crime to miss out on the excitement of the celebration. Party on, world. Party on!

JESS baker

LisaDecember 20, 2009 - 5:25 pm

i’m so excited you’re blogging :-) good post

Jess BakerDecember 21, 2009 - 6:01 am

thanks lisa… we’ll see how it goes. i’m not very tech savvy and have never been interested in blogging. unlike my handsome husband. but this experience wasn’t too painful. :)

colleenDecember 23, 2009 - 5:01 am

this kinda gave me chills. looooved it.

jim bakerDecember 27, 2009 - 9:51 pm

it gave me chills when I read it too the first time when it was still in draft. my wife’s a dang good writer.