Thursday, May 17, 2012

Should we All Wear Name Tags at Church?

A long time ago, Seth Godin blogged about name tags. Here's why he argued that name tags should be a part of most meetings:

I think doing name tags properly transforms a meeting. Here's why:
a. people don't really know everyone, even if they think they do.
b. if you don't know someone's name, you are hesitant to talk to them.
c. if you don't talk to them, you never get to know them and you both lose.
d. if you are wearing a name tag, it's an invitation to start a conversation.
One summer, I led 90 people, some strangers to each other, through a three-day training. Every single person had to wear a hat with his or her name on it until every person in the group knew every other person's name and could prove it. It took two days. Worth it.
so this raises two questions in my mind:

1) should we all wear name tags at church?
2) if we can't because we're too big, are we too big?

just asking....

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Creating a Culture of Accomplishment

A team rarely accomplishes its goals without a great deal of effort. That effort begins with those who are responsible to "lead" or to coach. Without effective coaching a team may end up going many different directions.Below are three simple ways you can help your team get on the same page and create a culture of accomplishment.
Keep team members informed
  • Focus your communication on the essential details 
  • Repeat your communication more than you think you should 
  • Find fresh methods to communicate “old essentials” 
  • Always provide open lines for feedback 
Equip team members for success 
  • Clarify your expectations for each team member 
  • Provide an adequate allotment of time and resources for accomplishing each task 
  • Continue to provide open lines for feedback 
Unleash team members to act 
  • Clarify the evaluation criteria for each team member 
  • Define each team members' role for the other team members 
  • Allow room for failure 
  • Relentlessly seek feedback

Creating a Culture of Accomplishment

View more PowerPoint from David Rudd

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

10 Awesome Things That Aren't Really Awesome For Us

Top Ten Lists are Fun.
Instant gratification is a problem in our world. People often choose (unwittingly) to endure long-term consequences simply so they can enjoy short term pleasure.  This is not healthy.

To be clear, I'm not opposed to gratification. God desires us to enjoy his world, to be joyful, to find pleasure in the things He has created... However, we need to do so with balance.

This list is not so much about things we should avoid, but things we should be careful about. Here are 10 awesome things that aren't really awesome for us:

10. French Fries
9. Contact Sports
8. Cheese
7. Money
6. Couches
5. TV
4. Cola
3. Automobiles
2. Dollar Stores
1. Bacon

It's so easy for us to get out of balance because we're pursuing "good" things. Our career, and money, and entertainment, and toys, and houses, and stuff, and popularity can all cause us to get out of balance and neglect the things that are really important. We need to be willing to GIVE AWAY some of these good things so that we can pursue the greatest things...

Tuesday, May 8, 2012


Have you ever heard someone say something like:

"I just need some time alone to re-charge.
I've been giving out way too much and not taking in enough."

Sabbath IS important...
Now, I don't want to minimize the need we all have to budget our time. And it is important to rest. The sabbath is for man, not man for the sabbath. I often take time on Monday or Thursday to sit in Panera and just read or write because i'm taking a morning off to have some "David Time".

BUT... (and this is a big but) (snicker)

This idea of "re-charging" gets WAY OVERBLOWN. We are not cars, we don't require a fill-up on gas every 300 miles. We are not droids who need to be plugged in to the wall every night... I think we're way off base when we begin to live as if there is a formula that we can only "give" so much before we need to "take." It seems to me that the Bible talks VERY LITTLE about taking, and an awful lot about giving.

Service is not a scarce commodity. Consider the following biblical teachings and examples:

  • Jesus, when his disciples were exhausted made them feed the 5000. An interesting part of that story is that the disciples originally felt like their ability to "give" was limited to a few pieces of bread and some fish. Jesus showed them that when He is in it, their ability to give is far greater than they think.
  • Remember the widow at Zaraphath? The prophet Elijah went to her (on God's instructions) and asked her to feed him. She objected, thinking she only had enough to make one final meal for her and her son. She obeyed, and as long as she kept giving, she never ran out of food!
  • Jesus invested a lot into the lives of the disciples... Who invested into Jesus?
  • Paul compared himself to being poured out like a drink offering. For him, it was an honor to give away his life.
  • According to Philippians 1, Paul wanted to die so he could be with God. (the ultimate re-charging!) But he realized it was better to stay alive so he could give to others. He was willing to put off the thing that was good for him, so that he could do good for others.
  • Jesus said we are to wash each other's feet.
  • In the ultimate good act, Jesus EMPTIED himself.

What we give away is a demonstration of what we love.

If we truly love God, we will be willing to give ourselves away for the good of His Kingdom and for the benefit of those around us.

...and sometimes...

We won't get recharged. That's why it's called sacrifice.

"Greater love has no man than this, that he give his life for his friends."

Monday, May 7, 2012

What You Give Away is a Demonstration of what You Love

Actually, the statement in the title is a very loose paraphrase of Jesus' words:

"Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also."

This morning I was thinking about some other ways I might say the same thing to help me focus a little bit on what this truth means for me today.  Some of the thoughts I had were:
- If you want to know what you love, look at what you accumulate
- The words "I love you" only go as far as the action "I sacrifice for you"
- Jesus said the greatest love is that of giving one's life away. Then He did just that.
- If you don't keep track of it, you don't love it.
- Your calendar, your checkbook, and your GPS history are the best record of what you love.
Of course, the greatest challenge is learning to love God more than all things.  Jesus said to love Him with all our HEART, SOUL, MIND, and STRENGTH.  So, my question for myself today is this:

In each of these areas, what can I give up as a demonstration of my love for God?

  • Heart --> Do I let relationships with other people hamper my spritual growth?
  • Soul --> Do my emotions keep me from living a God-honoring life?
  • Mind --> Am I reading (surfing websites) that are detrimental to my relationship with God?
  • Strength --> Do I have health habits that prevent me from living as God desires?

Remember: What you give away is a demonstration of what you love.

Who do you love?

What are you giving away?

Thursday, May 3, 2012

22 Ways You Can Respond to God's Word

Psalm 119 is not just the longest chapter in the Bible, it is also one of the greatest pieces of writing ever to be solely focused on the Word of God. If we claim that the Bible is the inspired Word of God (and I do), then we ought to be very concerned with how it impacts our life.

From Psalm 119, here are 22 responses to God's Word we can exhibit in our life:

  1. Obey God's Word
  2. Know God's Word
  3. Seek Understanding of God's Word
  4. Choose God's Word
  5. Desire God's Word
  6. Rely on God's Word
  7. Find Comfort in God's Word
  8. Remember God's Word
  9. Return to God's Word
  10. Rest in God's Word
  11. Long for God's Word
  12. Trust God's Word
  13. Meditate on God's Word
  14. Live by God's Word
  15. Depend on God's Word
  16. Value God's Word
  17. Keep God's Word
  18. Be Zealous for God's Word
  19. Prioritize God's Word
  20. Draw Life from God's Word
  21. Rejoice in God's Word
  22. Be Thankful fo God's Word
If you picked 3 of these to work on in your life, which ones would you pick?

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Your Life is Boring Because You Aren't on a Quest!

Do you have a life quest? Why not?

Quests not only bring to mind thoughts of swords, armor, dragons, and battles; they also are part of an "epic" way of living. If you want to spice up your life, stop running errands and start going on quests. In a few minutes this morning, I'm headed out on a quest. If my quest is successful, I will have accomplished several important goals for this week.

Quest-thinking can make mundane tasks more exciting, but it can also help us think through important things in new ways.

We can approach our jobs with a quest perspective. We can approach family goals with a quest perspective. We can even approach discipleship with a quest perspective.

Consider the following 7 steps of a successful quest and think about how you might be able to implement them into your life today.  Particularly think about how you might walk through these steps together with your friends!

The 7 Steps of a Successful Quest:

  • determine a life-virtue to be developed
  • craft an impossible quest toward that virtue
  • observe someone else who is modelling a similar quest
  • assist someone else in their completion of a similar quest
  • attempt and fail at the quest
  • complete and memorialize the quest
  • determine a life-virtue to be developed