My encounter with Wilco

Monday, April 20, 2009
My view from the 7th row of the TN Theater

The band posing for a pic with the employees of Disc Exchange

Saturday was National Record Store Day and since Wilco was in town for a show at the TN Theater, they stopped by the Disc Exchange for their DVD release and an autograph signing. I was there recording some audio so I got a chance to meet the band.

For the record: I don't care what anyone else has ever said about Jeff Tweedy. I feel like I'm a pretty good judge of character and these are the words I would use to describe him after meeting and talking with him: classy, polite, and a real gentleman.

Strength Finders 2.0

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Really liked this book. Although, it wasn't about the book at all.

The first couple of chapters introduce a philosophy that goes against what we've grown up with here in America. It's the idea that fighting through our weaknesses is usually a waste of time. If we instead took that effort and put it towards developing our strengths, we could maximize our potential and rise above the status quo.

I've always believed that, but the first two chapters really put it into terms I could understand. After reading through the first portion of the book, you are given a pass code that gives you access to the Strength Finders 2.0 personal strength assessment. The online interview takes about 20 minutes. Once the results are calculated, you are assigned 5 themes based on your strengths. With the 5 themes is a report with detailed descriptions of areas in which you excel and ideas on how to put the strengths into action.

My top five:






I recommend going through this book and assessment on your own, with your family, team, coworkers, etc...It not only has great personal strength building potential, but also team building potential.
Get your copy here.


Tuesday, April 14, 2009 daughter is not that crazy about hats I guess.

When you're sharing ideas with your peers, do you get this look? Do you ever feel like you have a hard time motivating people to come on board with your ideas? You think, "what else do I have to do to get these people excited about my idea???"

You might not have a motivation might have an idea problem.

Pray that your ideas are aligned with God's vision. Then he'll do the motivating; starting with the hearts.

wait for it....wait for it...

Friday, April 10, 2009

....And he said to them, "Follow me, and I will make you fishers of men." - Matthew 4:19

Okay, I love the outdoors. I love to hike, camp, bike, and do just about everything outdoors. Everything that is, except for fishing. Fishing is boring. There, I said it.
My pastor is cringing as he reads this. He loves to fish. That's okay though. He's also a LeBron James fan. ugh...We disagree on some really important things like that.

In Matthew chapter 4, Jesus is telling the men he chose to join him in ministry that if they follow him, he will make them fishers of men. He is using a metaphor by comparing adding people to the kingdom of God to fishing, something the men could relate to since their culture was based upon the sea, and their food supply depended on the catching of fish.

I've been thinking about that metaphor in today's terms. Going fishing in my culture usually means either sitting on a dock, a bank, or standing in a river waiting for the fish to bite whatever you've thrown at them. If they bite, it's a good day. If they don't, you just chalk it up to bad luck because there's always tomorrow, right?

The metaphor just doesn't work in today's terms. That's why it's important for us to understand the culture of the people we encounter in the Bible.

Fishing was tough for the men back then and probably a lot more adventurous than what we've ever experienced on the water. If a storm came, they couldn't just hop in the truck or head for cover. They had to face the storm head on and hope the waves didn't capsize their boats. There was also much more importance placed upon their fishing trips. If the fish weren't biting, they couldn't sell them. If they had nothing to sell, they may have not had food to eat. I would think that if the fish weren't biting, they would have to take desperate measures and move to another spot or try techniques they've never used before. I bet they got pretty innovative with their methods when the pressure was put on them. Can you imagine the joy and satisfaction they got pulling in full nets of fish because they found the right strategy?

That's the kind of fishing I'd want to be a part of. It sounds exciting. There is importance placed upon it. It sounds vital to a thriving culture. It involves life and death situations. It's dangerous at times, but the payoff is

I don't want to stand around in a river waiting for fish to come to me. I want to go after them.

I don't want to be a part of a church that throws out "bait" and waits for individuals to "bite".
I want to GO.
I want to use new strategies.
I want to find new ways to spread the message of Jesus to a lost world in order to add to the kingdom of God.
I don't want to be a part of a boring "stand in one spot and wait" kind of church.
I want to be a part of a dangerous church.

That's how I choose to fish.

Online Easter Experience

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Last night, Pastor Bobby Williams, Nick Miller, and I filmed some elements we'll be using in The Ridge's online Easter Experience airing on our web campus Sunday morning at 10am eastern. (Yeah, we filmed in my garage. We're all about DIY at The Ridge. We have to be. We're broke. lol)

This will be a chance for someone to log on and hear the message of Jesus in a very clear, straight-to-the-point way. We've also set up ways to communicate with each other while you watch with a chat function and also a way to communicate with me and Pastor B, if anyone decides that they want to dive deeper in a relationship with Christ.

We are pumped about using technology to have an online Easter experience. Hope to see you there!

as polymer smoothens polymer...

Tuesday, April 7, 2009
On Friday, I met with 12 church leaders from around the country at NewSpring Church as part of a coaching network hosted by Tony Morgan. Among many other topics, we discussed how important it is to surround yourself with passionate individuals who know when it's appropriate to push back. We found out that Perry Noble thinks it's essential for his partners in ministry to be honest and never be a "yes man" type person.

That got me thinking about Proverbs 27:17; "As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another." In our ministry work together, we must be honest with one another and not be afraid to say what God puts on your heart, even if it feels uncomfortable or goes against your natural non-confrontational human instincts.

I think we are better for each other if we are iron sharpening iron instead of a polymers smoothing polymers.