I’m Back!!!

So, I haven’t intentionally stayed away!  2013 has been a busy year, and I’ve allowed busyness to creep in to such a degree I barely have time to love my wife, my kids, and my church, let alone do something so foreign to me as blog.  Honestly, my lack of blogging is more telling about my age than anything else.  I’m not a twenty-something anymore…and just because I possess and preach from an iPad doesn’t mean I’m tech-savvy or that I’ve fully embraced all the tools technology affords me in my pursuit to engage my church family, my city, or society in general.  I feel largely inadequate and almost prideful really.  I mean, how arrogant can it appear to think that anyone would even care enough to read my ramblings?

But, if you’re so inclined….welcome to my blog….and to my journey as a life-long learner who is learning that the Gospel of Jesus Christ changes EVERYTHING!

Okay…books!  I’ve been reading them…just haven’t gotten around to writing about them.

The Advantage by Patrick Lencioni

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Now, this book was required reading for all the Divisional Superintendents and pastors of the Mid-Atlantic District of  Foursquare Churches…so, I was kind of forced to read it.  The Advantage is a book on organizational leadership that focuses on the idea that “the difference between successful companies and mediocre ones has little to do with how smart they are and more to do with how healthy they are.”  One of the greatest things that helped me was understanding about organizational wholeness…integrity.  Lencioni speaks a lot about four key disciplines that must be maintained if an organization is going to be whole, healthy, and productive that relate to building the right sized team, creating, communicating, and over communicating clarity.  All in all the book had many good qualities, though as a pastor (and as the pastors in my division were quick to point out), you really have to think about how to apply some of his ideas and points from a corporate world with employees and executives to a local church with one paid pastor on staff (sometimes) with an entirely volunteer staff.  Gave me much to think about in regards to how Anne and I lead River of Life.  Never a bad thing to think about what you’re thinking about…and RE-thinking it!

Embracing Grace by Dr. Daniel Brown

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I also finally finished the book by a great man of God in our Foursquare Family, Dr. Daniel Brown.Dr. D’s latest book, Embracing Grace was so refreshing in a number of ways:

1.  Dr. D is the master at taking complex concepts and illustrating them with simple pictures.  For example, when he is discussing how the Law of Moses was a tutor that led us to Christ, he compared it to his mother’s work as s seamstress.  She would take out the pattern for a new dress, unfold each piece, pin it to the fabric, then cut out the pieces.  After it was sown together, the dress would be lovely and wonderful…why would you ever gaze in awe and wonder at the old crinkly brown paper the pattern was printed on when you could admire the dress itself?  Great picture!

2.  Dr. D’s humility comes through over and over again.  As he shares about his own struggle with the Spirit of the Pharisee that continually condemned him, I can relate.  I have my own personal struggle there, and Dr. D’s willingness to be transparent made me feel like he was right there beside me.  He was speaking from experience, which is always the most believable.

3.  It’s refreshing that a voice from our Foursquare Family speaks with such conviction and clarity about a very complex subject.

I would highly recommend it!!

And, with that, I’ll be off.  Hope to be here more frequently, so check back often!

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