Archive for June, 2010

A Tribute Video to Dads

The guys over at Church On The Move put together this video for Father’s Day.  And, although Father’s Day has come and gone, we can still all enjoy this clip that pays tribute to dads…in a pretty humorous way.  Enjoy!  I’m sure some of you dads out there can identify with this video.

Dad Life from Church on the Move on Vimeo.

United We Stand. Divided We Fall.

It strikes me that in the church world we sometimes spend more time fighting against each other instead of fighting against the enemy…the devil and his crew.  The thing is, what President Lincoln said about our nation is probably true for our churches as well, “United we stand. Divided we fall.”  And actually, that’s a biblical concept.  Check out Matthew 12:22-30, especially verse 25.

Today, marketing guru, Seth Godin, made a blog post about his growing frustration with people who try to divide their tribe.  Here’s what he says:

The easiest way to make noise within a community is to divide the tribe.

Modernism, classicism, realism, impressionism–dividing things into schools of thought–or even warring camps–makes it easy to create tension and thus attention.

I’m running out of patience for people who would further their personal or media goals by dividing us in exchange for a cheap point or a few votes. If members of a tribe encourage schisms and cheer on the battles, is it any wonder that it’s hard to create forward motion? When we’re not in sync, power is dissipated.

Thoughtful conversation, dissent and disagreement are an essential part of growth. Intentionally pitting people against one another to make a few bucks is dangerous self-indulgence. The hardest part of being patriotic to your cause is rooting on the whole even when it’s easier to be a cynical critic.

So, take an inventory of where you are in life.  Are you contributing positively to your tribe or is it time change things around (join a different tribe or get on board with your tribe)?

iPhone = Cool. AT&T = Fail.

Jesus on the iPhoneSure, the iPhone is totally awesome, but AT&T is totally not.  The thing is, AT&T used to be ahead of the game in regard to service (back when they were Bell South Mobility or even Cingular), but now they are known to be a slower network with spotty service.  In fact, that’s one of  the reasons you no longer hear the “Fewest Dropped Calls” advertisements.  At any rate, a lot more people would buy the iPhone if it were on another network.  Take Perry Noble for example.  He just wrote a blog post about this very issue.  And, his comments raise some really good questions for Christians to think about.

Allow me to share his analogy (Don’t hate on it).  Could it be that sometimes Jesus is like the iPhone and the church is like AT&T?  Meaning, people like Jesus, but they just don’t care for the service (literally and figuratively), which is the church.

Let’s try to be the type of Christians that influence people toward Jesus rather than the type that cause people to take a pass. Said another way, “be a good example of a believer” (1 Timothy 4:12).

So Much Email. So Little Time.

Laptop Dispensing EmailAre you faced with an almost insurmountable stack of email everyday?  Well, I think I’ve found a helpful system for managing email in a post by Michael Hyatt, CEO of Thomas Nelson Publishers.

To be honest, this is exactly what I need(ed).  Let me give you a run down of my email scenario.  Every day, I actively check six email accounts.  Some are my personal accounts.  Some belong to the church.  In the course of a day, I easily take in 50 to 100 messages or so.  At this very moment, I have three email accounts with very extremely full inboxes.  One has 108 emails, another has 354, and another has 614!!!  Why do I let these pile up!  And, all that doesn’t even mention my intricate file folders system… between the six email accounts, I have 75 folders!  So, I’m definitely putting some of these principles into practice… starting today!

Here’s a summary of what Michael Hyatt says (Click here to read his full post):

1. Empty your inbox everyday.

2. Don’t get bogged down, keep moving. 5 possible actions for every email:

  • Do it now – If you can do it in 2 minutes or less.
  • Defer it – Schedule a time to do it (b/c it’ll take more than 2 minutes).
  • Delegate it – If it would be better for someone else to do it.
  • Delete it – If it’s not important or actionable.
  • File it – In one folder. If you need it, you can search for it later.

3. Use keyboard shortcuts and avoid the mouse.

4. Use email rules to filter low-priority stuff (like Bacn)

That’s just the outline skeleton of what Michael says.  Check out his post for the more meaty explanation.

Now, what are you waiting for?! Go forth and conquer your inbox!

Did you need to hear this today?
Are you swimming in a deep inbox?

And, what other tips could you give that might be helpful?

Click comment below to give us your thoughts.

Spam covering a woman at her computer.

Friday Favorites #5 – Tweets

Can you believe it?  Friday is here already!  Actually, it’s almost over.  So, it’s time for another set of Friday Favorites.  Twitter was an active part of this past week for me so I’ve decided to return to some of my favorite tweets.  Plus, this gives you a glimpse of some of the people I follow.  Enjoy…and let me know which one is your favorite.

  1. leopercer
    “A proud man is always looking down on things and people; and as long as you’re looking down, you can’t see what’s above you.” C. S. Lewis
  2. ChickfilA
    @johncmaxwell: Leadership is ab influence & u earn influence by connecting. Connecting is ab others & requires energy. #cfaleadercast
  3. johncmaxwell
    Success does not cause failure. Hubris (arrogance) born of success does. – Jim Collins #cfaleadercast
  4. johncmaxwell
    The most called-upon prerequisite of a friend is an accessible ear. –  Maya Angelou
  5. YouQuotedQuotes
    I had rather do and not promise than promise and not do. ~ Arthur Warwick
  6. leopercer
    Thomas á Kempis—”Adversities do not make a man frail, they show what sort of man he is.”
  7. YouQuotedQuotes
    The state of your life is nothing more than a reflection of your state of mind. ~ Dr. Wayne W. Dyer
  8. YouQuotedQuotes
    Seek First to understand, then to be understood. ~ Stephen Covey
  9. YouQuotedQuotes
    He, who moves not forward, goes backward. ~ Johann Wolfgangvon
  10. erguncaner
    Faith  Fact: Earth is the only planet in our system not named after a mythical god. “The earth is the Lord’s…” (Ps 24:1)

Friday Favorites #4 – Local Business

So, I’ve recently discovered a new business in town that makes me happy.  And so, I was thinking that for this installment of the Friday Favorites I would share with you one of my favorite local establishments.  For those of you who live near me, go and support this business.  For those of you who live elsewhere, I’m sorry.  You’re on your own.  So, here is one of my favorite local businesses.

Favorite Gas Station – RaceTrac
So, my favorite gas station used to be 7 Eleven.  I mean, who doesn’t like a slurpee every now and again?  But now, my favorite is RaceTrac.  It’s not the biggest or newest in town, but there are several reasons I like it most.  First, this summer they’re running a special deal.  Buy a keeper-cup, and you get free refills all summer!!!  What a deal!  That’s what initially got me coming there frequently, but soon I realized there are many other reasons to frequent this place.  Second, they have a slurpee-like frozen beverage that tastes like Dr. Pepper.  It’s awesome!  Third, there are always plenty of employees on duty there.  So, it’s safer, cleaner, and better stocked.  That’s better customer service!  Fourth, my daughter recently needed to go to the bathroom badly so we hesitantly took her inside, expecting the typical gas station restroom… yuck-tacular!  But, to our surprise, it was clean… really clean… even smelled that way.  Needless to say, that left a good impression on my wife.  Fifth, last night I was there getting my free refill (my “freefill”), and one of the workers went out of his way help another customer and me out.  The other guy was buying bottled water… and the worker voluntarily told him, “They’re on sale buy-one-get-one free.”  That’s awesome.  As for me, the ice machine was “hiccupping,” and the guy pointed me to the special iced coffee ice machine and encouraged me to use it.  Maybe, it doesn’t sound like that big of a deal, but get this… the guy was already off the clock, but he still helped us out anyway.  That kind of customer service makes me happy.

So, what are some of your favorite business around town?  I have more to share, but this will have to do for this week.  But I wonder, what makes your favorite businesses favorites?  What qualities do you look for?  And, what steps are you taking at your place of work to encourage people to come back for more?

Learning to Study Your Bible: 3 Step Process

Enlightening BibleDo you want to get more out of your personal bible study time?  Have you ever wondered how it is that some Christians, pastors, or bible study leaders seem to be able to identify so much more truth in God’s word?  Well, there’s a three step process that can put you on a path to understanding and applying God’s word to your life.  This will help you to be a doer of the word and not a hearer only (James 1:22).

Here are the three steps of inductive Bible study:

1). Observation: What does it say?
This first step is a simple one.  Read the text carefully a time or two in a Bible version that you can understand.  (There are many great versions and translations available.  The one that I use personally and recommend is the NET Bible.  If you want to know why I like this one best, ask me some time.)  As you read, look for the following things:

  1. Are there any commands?
  2. Are there any promises?
  3. Are there any repeated words or phrases?
  4. Are there any results or conclusions (look for therefore or so that)?
  5. What is the main idea of the passage?

2). Interpretation: What does it mean?
This can be a challenging step, and it’s the one that people sometimes fail to carry out correctly.  To perform this step, you may need to seek out a few Bible study tools (commentary, concordance, etc.).   But, don’t get too intimidated at this step.  Simply, consider the following questions:

  1. Are there any terms, words, or phrases that need to be defined?
  2. How does the passage fit into the broader context of the chapter & book?
  3. What was the author of this book trying to say?
  4. What did the audience understand the author to have been saying?

3). Application: What does it mean to me?
Now, it is time to apply the timeless truth of the passage to life.  Though all of the Bible may not be written directly to us, it is certainly written for us.   And, we must ask a few questions to learn how this passage should change our lives:

  1. What attitude does this passage instruct me to have?
  2. What action does this passage instruct me to take?
  3. What does this passage instruct me to believe?
  4. What does this passage instruct me to avoid?

At this step of application, also look for the How and the Why.  In addition to telling us what to do, believe, and avoid, the Bible also frequently tells us how and why to apply the truth of the passage.  So, look for that.

Certainly, this is not an exhaustive guide, but it should be a great start to helping you learn more from your Bible study time.  So, try taking these steps sometime this week, and let me know how it goes.  And of course, feel free to ask me any questions that arise from your personal study of the Bible.

Subscribe to My Blog: A How-To Guide

RSS LogoSo, it dawned on me this week that many people are just now beginning to understand what blogging is all about.  Sure, we know that a blog is an online journal of sorts, and it’s an extension of the social media frenzy.  But, many of us are just now beginning to understand the extra features that are out there.

For example, have you ever wondered what that strange, little, orange icon with waves is all about?  (It’s this icon right here ↑ )  This little icon and others like it can be found all across the web, but what is it there for?

That little icon says, “Hey! Subscribe here!  We’ll send you the blog posts from this site for free.”  It shows that an RSS Feed is available from the site.  That’s why I’ve got one in the upper right hand corner of this web page.

Okay, so now you know what it’s there for, but how does it work?

Watch this video to learn more about RSS Feeds & the little orange icon.
(And if you prefer you can subscribe by email, click subscribe to do that, too!)

Welcome to another dimension of the blogosphere!
Let me know if this little video was helpful to you.

The Don’t Song by Johnny & Chachi

This past Sunday at Palmetto Avenue Baptist Church, we showed two awesome videos from Johnny & Chachi (Check out their site.  These guys are hilarious.).  The Don’t Video, which you can watch below, helped provide a good intro to the next message in our Who Cares? series, “Who Care’s About Marriage?”

Enjoy the video.  I’d encourage you to watch it several times.  For one, watching it multiple times will hammer home the truth behind the video.  And second, you should watch it multiple times because undoubtedly you missed some of the funny stuff going on in the video the first time through.  Enjoy… and tell me what you think!

Friday Favorites #3 – Tweets

It’s that time again.  This Friday brings the third installment of the Friday Favorites series.  Each Friday you’ll find a listing of some of my favorite things.  I try to mix it up each week, but I have so many favorite tweets that I have to share more of these with you.  So, here are some of my favorite tweets from April 2010.

  1. hughballou

    Success is going from failure to failure without losing your enthusiasm – Abraham Lincoln

  2. JWill85

    When the people around you, limit God’s work within you, it’s time to get up and move – @stevenfurtick

  3. erguncaner

    “Beware of men who have strong convictions, but no compassion.” – WA Criswell

  4. leopercer

    Listening to gossip and accusations simply encourages ungodly behavior like sleeping with pigs encourages one to get dirty!

  5. leopercer

    “A lie consists in speaking a falsehood with the intention of deceiving.” – Augustine

  6. leopercer

    “Be not angry that you cannot make others as you wish them to be, since you cannot make yourself as you wish to be.” – Thomas A Kempis

  7. leopercer

    “God sends no one away empty except those who are full of themselves.” – D. L. Moody

  8. YouQuotedQuotes

    The best way to cheer yourself is to try to cheer somebody else up. – Mark Twain

  9. johncmaxwell

    On keeping it simple: If u can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it enough. – Albert Einstein

  10. johncmaxwell

    Connecting is not about YOU. It’s hard to find common ground w others when the only 1 you’re focused on is yourself.

So, which of these is your favorite?  And then, is there a type of favorite you’d like to request from me for next week?