Wednesday, December 24, 2008

CELEBRATE GOD WITH US



We celebrate Christmas for the miracle that in Jesus, God is with us.

How has your life changed because God is with us? What hope does knowing that God is with us bring to your life?

Thursday, December 18, 2008

3,2,1...Jump, Score, It's a World Record!!!



Checkout this amazing feat that is now a World Record!!! WOW!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

12 Days of Christmas Down in Africa... Toto What?



Great tune to give you a holiday laugh. Sit back with a hot cup of cocoa and enjoy! Thanks for this one @shawnw!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Revelation Song



May you grasp the real meaning of this season as you watch this amazing video that needs no explanation. May God be glorified and hearts transformed... today is the day for salvation!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

May the Force Be With You



May the Force be with you as you brave the lines at the local shopping centers looking for that perfect gift for that someone in your life. I will just pray that God will protect you from all the squirrels that are fighting over the last Wii game system and talking/dancing/do-the-dishes Elmo while I stay home drinking hot coffee and reading a the Gospel According to Jesus.

Don't Forget the Batteries!!!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Don't Mess with Granny



My friend Marybeth Stockdale posted this on her Facebook recently. I felt I needed to share some laughter with you today. Enjoy. God Bless!

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

No Glasses, Hats, Scarves — and even Smiles

MUNSTER, Ind. — The Indiana Bureau of Motor Vehicles is restricting glasses, hats, scarves — and even smiles — in driver's license photographs.

The new rules imposed last month are needed so that facial recognition software can spot fraudulent license applications, BMV officials told The Times of Northwest Indiana.

The software compares applicants' new photographs with old photographs on file to protect them from identity fraud, said BMV commissioner Ron Stiver.

"We take very seriously our responsibility to help protect the personal identity of Hoosiers, and the employment of this innovative technology is yet another important step forward in doing just that," Stiver said.

The new technology represents an advancement of what the BMV already was doing, agency spokesman Dennis Rosebrough said. BMV employees always have looked at the old photo of a person to see if it looked like the person seeking a new license.

Indiana is one of about 20 states using the facial recognition technology, he said, and other states have similar restrictions on driver's license photographs.


"We believe it's our responsibility to assure all Hoosiers the credentials we issue ... are as accurate as possible," Rosebrough said.

BMV officials want driver's license photographs to accurately show people's permanent facial features, Rosebrough said. That means glasses need to be removed. And if a person has hair hanging their face, it should be swept aside. Smiling can distort facial features measured by the software, Rosebrough said, so that is also restricted.

http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,463708,00.html

My First Mobile Blog

It is official. I have turned the tech corner by blogging with my Blackberry. Totally amazed by the versitility of all the technology available to bloggers today. May God be glorified by the use of such tools. Stay tuned to all future posts.
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Lukewarmness... Continued!

Craig Groeschel's Follow-Up Blog post on Lukewarmness looks like this:

Question: What do you do when you realize you are lukewarm?

Answer: You do something drastic!

If some small change would have made the difference in your spiritual life, you would have made the change a long time ago.

You might:
  • Start a seven day fast and devote extra time to seeking God.
  • Take a sabbatical and pray like you haven’t in years.
  • Confess to your spouse, your elders, or to trusted friends and ask for help.
  • Seek spiritual counseling from another pastor or counselor.
  • Take the week off and go to a hotel alone with no cell phone, no computer, and no books but the Bible.
  • Read a Children’s Bible and pretend like you’re hearing the gospel story for the very first time.
  • Repent to your family for your lack of spiritual passion and leadership.
  • Tell your church honestly that you are struggling and invite them to pray for you.
  • You might turn off your computer now and go somewhere and cry and repent deeply.
Whatever you do, it should be drastic and you should do it before another voice talks you out of it.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

My Year-End Self-Evaluation

Craig Groeschel recently posted some signs of a lukewarm pastor. Since lukewarmness is something detested by our Lord, I think an effective year-end self-evaluation can be created from the points following:

Do I pray as much, or more, publicly than privately?
Am I almost exclusively dependent on others’ sermons to preach than directly hearing from God?
Do I care more about my church than The Church?
Do I preach about evangelism but not practice evangelism privately?
Do I tolerate and rationalize unconfessed sin?
Do I preach for the approval of people rather than the approval of God?
Am I overly sensitive to criticism?
Do I harbor bitterness and unforgiveness?
Do I read the Bible to prepare sermons but not for personal devotion to God?
Am I jealous or critical of someone else that God is blessing?

Do you see any of this in yourself?

According to Craig, a lukewarm pastor:
Prays as much, or more, publicly than privately.
Is almost exclusively dependent on others’ sermons to preach than directly hearing from God.
Cares more about his church than The Church.
Preaches about evangelism but doesn’t practice evangelism privately.
Tolerates and rationalizes unconfessed sin.
Preaches for the approval of people rather than the approval of God.
Is overly sensitive to criticism.
Harbors bitterness and unforgiveness.
Reads the Bible to prepare sermons but not for personal devotion to God.
Is jealous or critical of someone else that God is blessing.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Bruce Wayne... Batman... Dead!!!



Bruce Wayne — who by night is Batman — gets murdered by a man claiming to be the father he thought was dead.

In a highly controversial new comic book storyline, Bruce, who first appeared in 1939, is killed by Simon Hurt — the leader of the shady Black Glove organization.

Simon claims he is really Dr Thomas Wayne, saying he faked his own passing when Bruce was a child.

The superhero dies when he tries to stop his foe escaping by helicopter in the new comic Batman R.I.P.

"This is so much better than death. People have killed characters in the past but to me, that kind of ends the story!" said writer Grant Morrison.

"I like to keep the story twisting and turning," he added. "So what I am doing is a fate worse than death. Things that no one would expect to happen to these guys at all.

"This is the end of Bruce Wayne as Batman."

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Help With Autism Research


Check out "What that kind of world do you want?" This web-site will distribute approximately 90% of money donated to selected charities. Watching the video will contribute $.49 per play.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Student Impact at the Luminate Concert

A great time was had by all the Impact Students at the Luminate Concert held at Crossroads in Sullivan. Great sound; Great tunes! Way to go guys!!!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

New "Extreme" Activity For the Office



Don't think I could get Pastor Rich to participate, esp. if I was doing the jumping!!! Accident waiting to happen. Maybe a Jr. Higher???

Friday, November 14, 2008

10 Reasons Why You’re Probably Going to Fail
Author: Tony Morgan

I’ve experienced failures. I’ve watched others fail. I’m guessing you’ve seen plenty as well. This morning I tried to think through some common reasons why failure happens. I’m looking forward to some healthy conversation on this one. With that, here are:

10 Reasons Why You’re Probably Going to Fail

1. It’s not your passion. If it doesn’t make your heart beat fast or cause your mind to race when you’re trying to sleep, you’re probably doing the wrong thing.

2. You don’t have a plan. You need a vision, and you need to identify specific steps to make that vision become reality. That includes a financial plan. (I happen to believe you need direction from God on this.)

3. You’re waiting for it to be perfect. Test-drive it. Beta-test that new idea. You’ll fall into the trap of inaction if you think it has to be absolutely right from day one.

4. You’re not willing to work hard. Everything worth pursuing in my life has involved discipline and perseverance.

5. It’ll outgrow you. Keep learning. Keep growing. But more importantly, build a team of people including leaders that can be who you’re not.

6. You’ve had success in the past. I’ve watched organizations hang on to a good idea for too long. Time passes. Momentum fades. It’s risky to let go of the past and jump on the next wave.

7. You’re unwilling to stop doing something else. Complexity is easy. Simplicity takes discipline.
You can’t build a healthy marriage if you’re unwilling to give up dating other women. Who/what do you need to stop dating?

8. You won’t build a team of friends. Anyone can hire from a resume. You need to find people you want to share life with. In the long run, great relationships will get you out of bed in the morning.

9. You won’t have the tough conversations. When breakdown happens (and it always does), someone needs to put on their big-boy pants and initiate the difficult conversation that leads to relational healing.

10. You’re afraid of failure. When fear consumes you, it will cause you to do stupid things. You’ll let negativity distract you. You’ll embrace the known, and grow comfortable with mediocrity. The more often you fail, though, the more often you’ll find success.

Here’s the deal. I don’t think this list is just about personal failure. This is about organizational failure (your ministry, your church plant, etc.). This is about business failure (your start up, your turnaround effort, etc.). This is about relational failure (your marriage, your dating relationship, etc.). The same principles apply.

Now it’s your turn. What else should be on the list? What are some other ingredients for failure you’ve experienced or witnessed? What would you add/delete from the list?

For other great posts, checkout:
http://tonymorganlive.com

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Generation "Me"

Today's American high school students are far likelier than those in the 1970s to believe they'll make outstanding spouses, parents and workers, new research shows.

They're also much more likely to claim they are "A" students with high IQs -- even though other research shows that today's students do less homework than their counterparts did in the 1970s.
The findings, published in the November issue of Psychological Science, support the idea that the "self-esteem" movement popular among today's parents and teachers may have gone too far, the study's co-author said.

"What this shows is that confidence has crossed over into overconfidence," said Jean Twenge, an associate professor of psychology at San Diego State University.

Read More:
http://news.yahoo.com/s/hsn/20081112/hl_hsn/usteensbrimmingwithselfesteem

By E.J. Mundell
HealthDay Reporter – Wed Nov 12, 5:02 pm ET

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Many Bitten by the Twilight Soundtrack
The soundtrack to the upcoming teen vampire romance Twilight debuts at #1 on The Billboard 200. Twilight is the first soundtrack to hit #1 in advance of the movie's release since 8 Mile six years ago. And I just thought the books were all the rave.

Friday, November 07, 2008

What if Starbucks Marketed like the Church



Much can be learned from the Starbucks Marketing Strategy.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Live 2008 Election Results

Toy Story Meets Dark Knight



This is one of the best mix-up I've seen in some time!!! So many creative people, so little viewer time!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

When Marriage Counseling is Required



Don't impress your wife by singing this if you intend on celebrating your next anniversary.
Animal Behind the Wheel


Yes, the photo above is real: It is Animal—from The Muppets—driving a British Audi while speeding through a German road. The famous pink drummer is driving the police there absolutely crazy, because he keeps doing it again and again. Or better said, the real driver is, using a low-tech approach to take advantage of a weak point of the radar cameras. I don't know about you, but this image makes me laugh out loud. The German police, however, wasn't amused when they explained to the press how the whole joke worked and how they couldn't fine the driver...

Posted by Gizmodo
3:50 PM on Mon Oct 27 2008
By Jesus Diaz

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

"MARGINS"
(Help Needed!!!)

How you answer the following ten questions will speak volumes about the kind of life you’re living now – and how this lifestyle will affect your family in the future. I seem to be failing in every area. As Christians, we need to encourage each other to evaluate and correct our failures in these areas and rely on Christ to transform our lifestyles to what He has designed. Failures in these areas directly affect our energy and efficiency for Kingdom work and family alike.

1. Have you stopped enjoying life because you’re too busy? Remember the words of the Apostle Paul – “Rejoice in the Lord always – again I say, ‘Rejoice!’” There are so many things in life to enjoy. If you can’t think of one of them, that’s a “Red Flag.”

2. Have you stopped developing new relationships? And talking to parents on the sidelines at soccer games doesn’t count. When was the last time you had a meaningful conversation with someone you don’t know very well? There’s no reason why each of us can’t make at least one new friend every year.

3. Are you exhausted most of the time? Scripture says we’re never to grow weary of doing good. And it’s been my experience that the things we find most enjoyable in life don’t drain us of our energy – they increase it! That said, there’s no reason why anyone should be exhausted most of the time. Occasionally tired, perhaps, at times – but not to the point of constant exhaustion.

4. (If you’re married) Do you and your spouse have a regular “date night?” If you don’t, download a free copy of my Fact Sheet on “Why Dating Your Spouse is Good for the Whole Family.”

5. Do you have credit problems or a large load of debt? The amount of consumer debt in this country is staggering . . . and it’s only getting worse. There was a reason Jesus said, “You cannot serve two masters” (meaning God and money). If you’re spending as much as you’re earning – or more – the margin you’ve eliminated by doing so could cost you a much greater price.

6. Are you getting enough sleep? This might sound a bit redundant (see #3 above) but we feel it’s actually a different subject altogether. Research indicates that the average adult needs 6 to 8 hours of sleep each day to maintain good health . . . so, if you need 8 and are only getting 6, time to think about an earlier bedtime.

7. Does your family have dinner together on a regular basis? This may sound hard to believe, but the secret to reducing stress, improving your love life and keeping your kids off of drugs may be as simple as sitting down to dinner as a family 3 – 5 times a week. Recent studies confirm it – families who eat together . . . at home . . . around the family dinner table . . . create a more stable environment than those who are constantly on the go. Establish family dinnertime as a non-negotiable – then, turn on the phone answering machine, turn off the TV – and dig in!

8. Do you take a restful “day off?” Too few of us do . . . even though God requires is of His children. (“Remember the Sabbath and keep it holy.” “Six days shall you labor . . . .” You know the drill.)

9. Do you have regular “family time” together? Now, this would be apart from Church and school activities. Sporting events and other “have to’s” don’t count, either. We’re talking about “hanging out” time here. Do you have any? If not, you should!

10. Are your children showing signs of stress? Stress among teenagers is becoming more and more common. In fact, in his book called, The Seven Cries of Today’s Teens, author and family expert Tim Smith says that the cries for love and security are greater now among children than ever before...especially after the 9/11 attacks. And, chances are that, if one of the key contributors to stress in your children is the overloaded schedule of their parents.

How you answered these questions speaks volumes about your current quality of life. If it needs to change, then change it – don’t wait for a catastrophy to bring you back to reality!

(Based on principles included in the book, Margin: Restoring Emotional, Physical, Financial and Time Reserves to Overloaded Lives by Richard A. Swenson, M.D.

Shared by http://www.homeword.com/

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Masks: Hiding the Real Us

Why do we need masks for Halloween when the real us is already hidden? What people see when they look at us is exactly what we want them to see. Our world thrives on fakeness. Our culture needs to understand that God loves the real us. We are loved and valued despite what others say. It is time to reveal the real you. Just a few things we will be talking about as we unleash the new series "Reflection" tomorrow evening at IMPACT. Come check it out. NO MASKS ALLOWED!!!

Friday, October 24, 2008

My New Office


I am pretty excited about my new office. Much has be accomplished since the June flood in which destroyed my office and library. Thanks to SYM and Group, as well as, insurance and donations, I finally have place to work. Praise God!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Why does it have to be so complicated?


It's OK Granny!!! I normally feel like you when I purchase the newest tech devices... Like when I converted to the Macbook Pro and set up the apps on the Blackberry!!! Why does it have to be so complicated?
McDuff

McDuff

This is my in-laws new dog.  A Westie with an attitude.  McDuff had fun experinces with Schyler over the fall break weekend.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Poll Question: Should parents prohibit their kids from participating in church and youth group activities as a method of discipline?

Yes: 26%
No: 74%

Selected Comments:

I have to say that I struggle with this sometimes. Sometimes my daughter doesn't spend enough time prepping for tests/quizzes & I feel guilty for letting her go off to church related youth activities for 1 1/2 hrs - when I know that she is not prepared for the test or quiz the next day.

Spiritual training is very important. Not all youth group activities involve spiritual training, but the ones that do should not be prohibited. In fact, I believe we should encourage kids to hang around Christians.

"Homeward" Survey
5 Tips for Helping Busy Parents Re-Prioritize Their Lives:

1. Ruthlessly Eliminate Stress No one can get their priorities straight if they’re constantly living “under the gun.” If there’s so much stress in your life that you’re finding it difficult to keep your priorities in order, lighten your load first – and now!

2. Make Daily Solitude a Priority Don’t feel guilty or like you’re “avoiding your family” for making time for yourself each day. It’s a must... even if it’s just 15 minutes in the morning for “quiet time” with the Lord. No one will miss you if you “take 5” for yourself every now and then... so do it.

3. Develop a “Blank Slate” Approach In other words, begin and end each day with no agenda. Come before the Lord with open arms, hands and an open mind and heart each morning. Let Him set your day in motion and then give everything back to Him at the end of each day – all your worries, cares, successes, failures. Exchange them for a good night’s sleep. (Psalm 91:1)

4. Give Your Family Your Best – Not Your “Emotional Leftovers” It’s very noble to “give your all” at work. But, what does that leave for your spouse and kids? Not much? Not good! Your family deserves the best you have to offer. They need you healthy, rested, happy, or perhaps more importantly, content. No “table scraps” from your heart for them. Give them the main course. Then, watch how your priorities change by themselves!

5. Don’t Wait for Someone Else to Do this For You This is your life – these should be your priorities. If you’re waiting for someone else to come alongside you and tell you how to live your life, you’re in for a long wait. The time to make the changes is now – so get to it!
Reprioritizing your life doesn’t have to be difficult. But, if you’re like most of us, it does need to be done every now and then. And, with God’s help, you can do it!

(Excerpted from the book, The 10 Building Blocks for a Happy Family by Jim Burns, Ph.D.)

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Unprecedented Confusion, Uncertainty, and Fear

Check out this relevant letter I received this AM from my friend Tim Ramseier (Executive Dir. of Vigo Co. YFC)... Talking about timely for today. Let us hold fast to the wisdom and security of God and the hope we have in Christ!

My Dear Brothers and Sisters…
“Though the fig tree should not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines, the produce of the olive fail and the fields yield no food, the flock be cut off from the fold and there be no herd in the stalls, yet I will rejoice in the Lord; I will take joy in the God of my salvation.” Habakkuk 3:17-18

There is unprecedented confusion, uncertainty, fear and polarization in our country today. The volatility in the stock market is becoming an appropriate proxy for what has long been the story of many souls.

It is with this situation as a backdrop that I write, knowing that many of you/us are facing deep and difficult challenges. It is against this canvas that we paint the picture of hope and certainty. Our Lord and Savior is not panicked, He is not wringing His hands in worry. He needs not call any emergency meeting of the Godhead.

These are wonderful days to be a part of the ministry of Youth for Christ. The stakes are high. The test is intense. The opposition is sharp. The problems are daunting. But when, in the midst of all of this, we are able to catch a glimpse of the sovereignty of God, then we will begin to find the joy of our salvation.

I treasure your partnership in the Gospel. I treasure your commitment and sacrifice on behalf of Youth for Christ.

I am honored to serve for you and with you. I am praying for you as you resist the urge to fold or cave or retreat. Courage my friend. You are not alone. There is great comfort in the companionship of battle. And so today I wanted to shine a light on that partnership. “I will take joy in the God of my salvation.” Be dispensers of this hope to the many individuals in your communities that are hurting, unraveled and broken by the times in which we live.

I love and appreciate you.

Soli Deo Gloria.
Dan

Daniel S. Wolgemuth
President/CEO

Photo from Yahoo.com

Monday, October 06, 2008

Cell Phone vs. Bible

(Checkout the new "LIVE" Bible--NLT)

Ever wonder what would happen if we treated our Bible like we treat our cell phone?

What if we carried it around in our purses or pockets?

What if we flipped through it several time a day?

What if we turned back to go get it if we forgot it?

What if we used it to receive messages from the text?

What if we treated it like we couldn't live without it?

What if we gave it to kids as gifts?

What if we used it when we traveled?

What if we us ed it in case of emergency?

This is something to make you go... hmm... where is my Bible?

Oh, and one more thing. Unlike our cell phone, we don't have to worry about our Bible being
disconnected because Jesus already paid the bill.

Makes you stop and think 'where are my priorities? And no dropped calls!
from my friend Micheala

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Youth Volunteers: For Your Eyes Only

"Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit." 2 Corinthians 3:17-18

The Holy Spirit Himself is the real, lead, youth pastor for the teens in our youth group.

Do you really believe the Spirit can transform our teens?

Are you entreating the Spirit of God in prayer to transform our teens?

How are we doing depending on Him as we seek to nudge our teenagers deeper and wider?

Is every lesson we teach, every conversation we have with a teenager and every prayer we utter on their behalf done in reliance on the Holy Spirit?

Is reliance on the Holy Spirit something real and practical that our teens can see in our life?

Q's from D2S Energy

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Hey YP's... Checkout the NYMC Connect Site

Hope to see you all at the National Youth Ministry Conference in Columbus, OH in February. This is by far the best training opportunity that you can participate. Informative, encouraging, and a chance to catch your breath. Check out the Web-site at:

Join Me on Twitter
Hey I would like to invite you to be a tweetin' friend on Twitter.
Stay in touch with myself and some really cool friends who love Jesus!

http://twitter.com/PastorShan

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Do You Know Why Mona Lisa Smells Like Sausage?


She is made from sausage. There are masterpieces from Russia being made from sausage, - according to the description anyone can just walk up and eat the artwork. Where is the eggs?
Pilgrimmed!!! Take candy? Just say no!



Which way do I turn? What should I choose! Check it out!!!
CIY 2009... Anderson, IN. June 22nd. Plan now to attend!

Friday, September 19, 2008

Dominoes: More than a Game...A Life lesson



Just wondering how one would have so much time and stability to create such an amazing structure, only to watch it fall. And why? Don't we do that with the things of this world? I put too much effort in things that don't matter, only to watch them turn to rust or fade away. God give me the ability to focus on the things that really matter and things that have eternal significance.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Amazing!!! God Is Visible Throughout Nature


A lady found a hummingbird nest and got pictures all the way from the egg to leaving the nest. It took 24 days from birth to flight. Wow! Two tiny pearl white eggs, all of 13mm (½") long! Keep in mind one egg is smaller than a tic tac and a quarter fits the opening of the nest!


For more pics and info checkout:
http://community-2.webtv.net/Velpics/HUM/

Friday, September 12, 2008

Leadership

Following is a post by my friend Kurt Johnston. There is so much we can learn from Andy's wisdom shared at the DRIVE Conference. Check it out...

At the final General session of DRIVE, Andy Stanley decided to toss away his plans to teach on vision casting and share some of his recent random thoughts about leadership in general instead.

Thought #1
"To reach people no one else is reaching we must do things no one else is doing."
- Craig Groeschel; founder of Lifechurch.tv

Andy's big thought related to this quote was that obviously the majority of things church's are doing must not be what most people are interested in because most people aren't going to the things church's are doing! Even a super cool worship service must not be what most people are interested in because most people aren't going to super cool worship services...they are doing a bunch of other stuff instead.

Andy's takeaway for us: Become preoccupied with those we haven't reached instead of being preoccupied with those we are trying to keep.

What might this mean in a junior high setting?
- Does my ministry have at least as much focus on reaching un-churched kids as it does ministering to kids who already know Jesus?
- Is there a new way to begin reaching kids who don't show an interest in coming to programs?
- What is one thing that nobody else is doing for junior highers that you have the resources, passion and ability to do in your ministry?

POSTED BY KURT JOHNSTON AT 11:33 AM
LifeShare / A LifeChurch.tv and RagamuffinSoul Initiative
from Ragamuffin Soul by loswhit

Coming up this next Wednesday, September 17 we are starting LifeShare, a 7 day online challenge for all of us with blogs, friends in social networks, and in online communities to put our love and faith into action…

I am teaming YOU guys up with the amazing team at the LifeChurch.tv Internet Campus to see how we can truly be the church online. I think we already are doing a GREAT job here at RagamuffinSoul and love the idea of partnering with another online community that “gets it”.
Here’s the skinny.

What will we be doing?
This LifeShare online challenge will have 5 different levels at which you can get involved.

1. Share the Experience - Tell YOUR online communities about it and lets see this thing gain momentum.

2. Share your Space - Embed the mogulus player where it all will be going down, insert badges, countdown timers, ect

3. Share His Message - We will step out and share why Christ is our message in different ways

4. Share your Story - Next week I’m going to give you all an avenue to share your story of your spiritual journey here on RagamuffinSoul.com. If you can, try and snag a webcam for the latter part of next week. I think it’s going to be cool.

5. Share your Life - We will be challenged to step out of our own “web spaces” and get uncomfortable with those around us by giving ourselves to them.

So what is next?
Begin by praying that God would use those seven days to show you the power of His love and how it can be used in the online world. Then click here and sign up to get all the deets as they come out. I’ll be sharing more as we lead up to the challenge and CAN’T wait to see our community shape the web for HIM!!!

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

Bad Day at the Park

You know you are having a bad day when you exit the park after a day of exercise and your bike comes out looking twisted like the pic above. I am just glad the blood was removed before the pic was taken.
Power Windows



This YouTube classic reminds me of my High School days in Sullivan, IN. where my friends and I would cruise the square in an old rusty van until we were on fumes. Then, the old couch would come out of the back for us to enjoy everyone else wasting their gas. Yes, we hung out on the square, sitting on an old beat up couch and eating peanuts!

We had to push that old van more than once. Even changed a tire as "Clyde" one of my friends acted as the jack. Yes, he could lift the back end up while the rest of the "couch" gang changed the tire! Amazing!

The only hang up for us and an invention like the "Power Window conversion kit/mixer" is that we didn't have windows in the old van!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Join Me In Prayer:
Gustav (Cat. 4 Hurricane) headed toward New Orleans


Join me in prayer for those being affected by Gustav which has already has killed 78 people in the Caribbean. The U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami said it could strengthen even more after hitting Cuba and entering the warm Gulf of Mexico on a projected course for the Katrina-battered U.S. coast.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

My Favorite Toy Box Gang Video



The gang discuss their current social commitments. Louis is the coolest!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Inviting People to Follow Christ

10 Reasons to Invite People to Follow Christ Every Week At Church
from LifeChurch.tv : swerve by Craig Groeschel

1. Someone may be at church only once.
2. The Holy Spirit may have been working on them for months or years.
3. Even some churched people don’t understand the gospel.
4. Many trust in the church for salvation instead of trusting Christ.
5. Seeing others saved gives believers another reason to worship and motivation to witness.
6. New Christians can “light a church on fire.”
7. Angels in heaven get to party when one person meets Christ.
8. Hell is a real place.
9. You care deeply about people.
10. Families, workplaces, neighborhoods, cities, and generations could be different when one person meets Christ.

10 Reasons Not To Invite People to Follow Christ at Your Church
from LifeChurch.tv : swerve by Craig Groeschel

1. You are afraid of rejection.
2. You think everyone at church is already a believer.
3. You wouldn’t dream of offending someone.
4. You don’t really believe the gospel changes lives.
5. You are so busy preaching about “sex” or “how to have a better life” that you don’t have time to present Christ.
6. You would rather tell another joke than spend time explaining the gospel.
7. You don’t want to be criticized for being narrow minded.
8. You care more about everyone feeling welcome than about their eternity.
9. You are embarrassed to talk a lot about Jesus.
10. You don’t really really believe the gospel yourself.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Shawn Johnson Won the Gold

On her fourth and final chance, Johnson won her gold medal with a nearly flawless routine on balance beam, outpacing teammate Nastia Liukin and China’s Cheng Fei.

At the end she unleashed a smile as big as Beijing itself, a glorious conclusion to a competition that never got her down and only taught her more about herself as she came to appreciate the journey as much as the destination.

“I kept saying, ‘finally’ a lot,” Johnson laughed. “I made it. I finally won a gold medal.

I can’t stop smiling. I’m so excited.”

by Dan Wetzel yahoo.sports

Friday, August 15, 2008

Michael Phelps: Is he listening to "We are the Champions?"
Chris Chase recently wrote about the iPod headphones dangling from Phelps' ears. He said, "The earbuds are a ubiquitous presence in the ready room and on the starting block; they're just as much a part of Phelps' 'uniform' as goggles and a swim cap. About two minutes prior to the start of a race, Phelps sheds the iPod along with his warm-ups. So, what is he listening to?"

Good question! It has been said that he listens to hip-hop, but I am thinking some Queen from the 70's... "We are the Champions," because he is the champion. With 7 Gold Metals at Bejing and an opportunity for one more, he can claim it as his theme song!

Copyright © 2008 Yahoo!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Trend Sites Youth Workers Should Follow
from ysmarko by marko

A few weeks back, anastasia at ypulse posted 10 sites she thinks everyone in media or marketing to youth should follow regularly. a handful of them would be really helpful for christian youth workers to follow also. i’ve bookmarked several of them, and list them here, with anastasia’s comments:

1. MTV News. Whatever your thoughts are on the relevance of MTV, the channel invests heavily in researching their demographic and knowing what teens (collective) want. Reading MTV News online is basically reading headlines handpicked by editors who are deciding what entertainment news is most relevant to their audience. It’s worth checking on a daily basis. You can also sign up for MTV Sticky, a free trend email from MTV’s research department.

4. My High School Journalism. Obviously this site is dead during the summer months when school’s out, but this fall you should definitely check in on a weekly basis. This is the gateway to loads of high school newspaper websites and a way to see what teens think are important issues both at their school and in the world.

5. Next Great Thing Youth. Mobile. Trends. Fleishman’s blog description says it all. They do nice roundups of youth oriented mobile links along with more in-depth posts on what’s happening in this space.

6. Trends & Tudes - Harris Interactive (a sponsor of Ypulse Research) has a monthly e-newsletter that highlights research they’ve done for their clients. They don’t just offer numbers but always offer insights you can pull from the research, whether it’s on bullying at school or college students today.

7. The Pew Internet & American Life Project - Pew produces free reports on how teens are using the internet. Every one is a free goldmine of information.

9. danah boyd’s research. danah is one of the few academics who consciously strives to make as much of her research free and available online. Not only that, it’s required reading if you’re focused on youth and social media.

10. Youth Media Exchange. If you are interested in social change and want to know what young people all over the world are concerned about, YME is a great resource and a truly international youth activism site. Worth checking to get a global pulse of what youth activists are thinking (and doing) around the world. Also a great resource for corporations looking to partner or create global pro-social campaigns.

Monday, August 11, 2008

New Office Furniture!!!


Tennis Ball Office Chair
VHS Visitor Chair
This was not what I had in mind when I started looking for new office furniture. I was thinking a trip to IKEA would take care of business. Maybe I am missing some new trend from the latest designer.
Spread the Love
18 ways for students to make someone's day.

1. Send "thinking of you" cards to some guys and girls in your youth group who need cheering up.

2. Surprise Mom by offering to do this week's grocery shopping or laundry.

3. Have dinner ready when your parents come home from work.

4. Call your pastor or youth pastor and volunteer to help out around the church for a few days during your summer break.

5. Surprise a missionary family from your church. Get your youth group friends together, buy some gifts and assemble a package to send to the family. (Contact your pastor or youth pastor for ideas on what to send.)

6. Take pictures of your family and e-mail digital copies (or mail prints) to your grandparents or extended family members who may live far away.

7. Spend a Saturday or a day of your summer break volunteering at your local food bank, soup kitchen or Salvation Army shelter.

8. Spend a day at the zoo or a park with your little brother or sister.

9. Smile and say "Hi!" to someone you don't know.

10. Send "thank you" cards to a few of your favorite past teachers—including teachers from your elementary and middle school years. Tell them what you enjoyed most about your time in their classroom.

11. Offer to help an elderly person in your neighborhood with yard work or even just bringing in the groceries.

12. Walk your neighbor's dog.

13. Treat a friend at his or her favorite coffee shop.

14. Buy your mom a single rose.

15. Get together with some church friends and deliver homemade snacks to new members of your youth group.

16. Spend an afternoon visiting residents at a local nursing home.

17. Wash your parents' car without being asked.

18. Don't stop now. Look for little ways to make somebody's day every single day.

Copyright © 2008 by the author or Christianity Today International/Ignite Your Faith magazine.

Saturday, August 09, 2008

A Great Way To Impress Your Friends



Picked this video up from my friend Marco.  
I would love to see someone at youth group "WOW" a "Newby" showing their impressive Dominoes skills.  This is better than the "Ligger" skills of Nepoleon.

Friday, August 08, 2008

Seven Burning Questions About Star Wars: The Clone Wars
by Tom Burns


August 15th... it's reality folk! Coming to a theater near you. Checkout some detailed info/answers to questions I know you have.

http://www.thedeadbolt.com/news/104852/7clonewars_feature.php

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Please Pray for the Greg Laurie Family

Christopher Laurie, son of Pastor Greg Laurie and Cathe Laurie of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Riverside, Calif., passed away on July 24, 2008 in a car accident. A resident of Huntington Beach, Laurie, 33, served as the art director at Harvest Christian Fellowship for the past three years.

In addition to his parents, Christopher is survived by his wife, Brittany, and daughter, Stella, as well as his brother Jonathan. Christopher and his wife are expecting another daughter in November.

Update: A memorial service will be held on Friday, August 1, at 11 a.m., Pacific Time at Harvest Christian Fellowship. You may watch the service live online by visiting harvest.org.
Ken Griffey Jr.-Going to the White Sox

Cincinnati Reds' Ken Griffey Jr. agreed to accept a trade to the Chicago White Sox today.
Sad day in Cincy!
Anchors
by Nelson Searcy

Anchors are set activities that keep our priorities in order.

There are many different kinds of anchors: family anchors, spiritual anchors, personal growth anchors, etc.

Spiritual anchors are daily, weekly, yearly or occasional activities that we do to celebrate our faith or keep us grounded in faith.

Family anchors are things you do with your family to keep your priorities in order.

Let me give you some examples from our group discussion:

SPIRITUAL ANCHORS
- Daily time with God
- Practicing a weekly Sabbath

FAMILY ANCHORS
- Regular date night with your spouse
- Monthly son/daughter lunch or dinner

PERSONAL GROWTH ANCHORS
- Reading one book a month
- A monthly mentoring or coaching relationship

Some are very systematic…do this every week or every month.

What are the anchors in your life?

How are you helping the members of your church build anchors?

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Poll: What should Oklahoma City's nickname be?
I Voted for the Barons!!!
The NBA didn't like that KOCO-TV leaked word that the Oklahoma City team name was going to be Thunder, so they went and registered five other names on Friday to keep us on our toes. The six names filled for trademark: Barons, Bison, Energy, Marshalls, Thunder and Wind.

Nickname: Barons
Marketing campaign: "Shoot 'em up, shoot 'em down."
Mascot: Snoopy
Dance team: The Flying Aces
Arena songs: "We Fly High" by Jim Jones, "I Want To Take You Higher" by Sly & The Family Stone, "Shoot 'Em Down" by Twisted Sisters, "Pump Up the Jam" by Technotronic

Original Article By J.E. Skeets
Isn't Money... Money?



Often I pay with rolled coins and seem to face the same response. Are you sure there is 100 pennies in the roll? "That's what my coin machine says," is my response! I love the disgusted look on the clerks face.

I am also amazed at the response I receive when I pay with cash... "the pause, the look, the yellow pen (Could it be counterfeit?), the pause, the confused look (I can't count change back!), the slap-back from the receipt!" What was it like before credit cards? Isn't Money... Money?

What are your funny experiences?

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Jimmie Johnson Wins the Brickyard!!!

Jimmie Johnson grabbed his second win at Indianapolis Motor Speedway by surviving horrendous tire troubles that made Sunday's race a caution-marred debacle.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

My Redeemer Lives



I am still amazed how the Lord Jesus picks me up and carries me in my weaknesses and inabilities.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Sad Day for the Golden Girls
Estelle Getty, the diminutive actress who spent 40 years struggling for success before landing a role of a lifetime in 1985 as the sarcastic octogenarian Sophia on TV's "The Golden Girls," has died. She was 84. My favorite line: After listening to the grueling non-sense story of Betty White, Estelle said," I have had kidney stones with less pain!"

Yahoo.com News

Monday, July 21, 2008

US Makes Mark in History on July 20th



Yesterday marked the 39th year the Apollo 11 landing on the moon. Dispite those who believe the landing was a hoax, it was the first manned mission to land on the Moon. The first steps by humans on another planetary body were taken by Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin on July 20, 1969. The astronauts also returned to Earth the first samples from another planetary body. Apollo 11 achieved its primary mission - to perform a manned lunar landing and return the mission safely to Earth - and paved the way for the Apollo lunar landing missions to follow. Happy B-Day Space Team USA.
Is the Inflatable Car Our Answer to Rising Gas Prices?

Is this the answer to the ever rising gas prices? I can't imagine a blow-up car. Just thought this was funny.

The photo is an artistic recreation of a Porsche Carrera. It is completely inflatable and runs from natural "air" gas. To drive it, you simply unplug the cork, and sit on the thing, and inch forward as the escaping air propels you down the street. Look out there she blows!!!

I guess if every one owned one, wrecks would resemble bumper cars; but what about pranks like keying an enemies car. No more car!

Keep your eyes pealed for this beauty!

Friday, July 18, 2008

Why Buy?

Why do I always have to stand in line at the gas station when the following stat exists?

Your odds of dating a millionaire are 1 in 215?

But the likelihood of winning a single state lottery are about
18 million to 1?

Maybe I should tell those making there hopeful choice to save their money for the rising gas prices, pick up some Krispy Kreme Donuts, or just search for a single millionaire.
I Just Keep Dreaming!!!

Oh, how much simpler my life could be if I could purchase the new IPhone. However, due to Verizon's lack of sophisticated technology, and the company's inability to handle such a powerful tool, I must only dream! Please pray for me that I would not covet all my friends who have simplified their lives by purchasing the new "3"!!! God help Verizon.

Monday, July 14, 2008

At the "Office" with My Friends from D2S 


Free Youth Ministry Resources

Greg... do you have too much time on your hands? If so, come help us in the flooded Office. Bring your boots!

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Break Dancing Baby



Oh! How this takes me back. One word: Ouch!!!

Thursday, July 03, 2008

One Decked Out Multi-Purpose Toilet
I came home this afternoon only to find a broken toilet in our master bathroom. After two trips (the norm) to Lowe's for replacement toilet parts and gaskets, I was able to make it function like a well-tuned Cadillac. However, after checking out one of my favorite tech blogs, I discovered that I should have picked up a few more parts and accessories to deck out my toilet like this multi-purpose beauty! I believe the owner of this techno-john thought of everything!

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Wall-E Needed to Help Clean Agape

Wall-E is one lean, mean, cleaning machine.  Great movie for the whole family!  Many positive underlying messages.
 
I would love to have this emotion-bearing, loving robot at the church to help in the recovery process.  He just scoops in the garbage, compresses it with a flex, dumps out the cubed trash, and stacks it in the correct location.  What a dream!

If you go see the movie, be sure to look for the ever-so-slightly hidden easter eggs which are a claim to fame for all Pixar Films. (Hint: Eve, and the hunt.)  

Friday, June 27, 2008

Wall-E Did not show up at the Drive-In but the Storm Did!

We had a great evening with friends meandering through the countryside to Spencer, IN to see Wall-E at the drive-in theater. However, due to road closings and a massive storm we did not meet the robotic alien. It was a wild ride with lots of laughs, especially after "Billy Joe Bob and his cousin Earnie Dale" from the local fillin' station gave us directions back to a main semi-straight paved road. Decided to trek back to the Haute, which needed no more water, to eat at Cheeseburger in Paradise to the sounds of a "dog calling/hollorin" singer.

Sweet memories and lots of teasing material for our neighborhood weather watchers. Great time. Thanks for the laughs Larson's!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Their Real Names Are...

It's no wonder that many celebs choose to drop their given name for something a bit more... catchy. Below is a list of 15 "real name" searches. Most people stick with the name they're given. Celebrities are not "most people."

1. Tiger Woods Real Name (Eldrick Woods)
2. Madonna Real Name (Madonna Ciccone)
3. Miley Cyrus Real Name (Destiny Hope Cyrus)
4. Coco Crisp Real Name (Covelli Crisp)
5. Hilary Banks Real Name (played by Karyn Parsons)
6. Gene Simmons Real Name (Chaim Witz)
7. Hulk Hogan Real Name (Terry Bollea)
8. Larry the Cable Guy (Daniel Lawrence Whitney)
9. Ray Stevens Real Name (Harold Ray Ragsdale)
10. Bono Real Name (Paul Hewson)
11. Sting's Real Name (Gordon Sumner)
12. Jay-Z's Real Name (Shawn Carter)
13. Marilyn Manson Real Name (Brian Warner)
14. John Wayne Real Name (Marion Morrison)
15. Prince's Real Name (Prince Rogers Nelson)

by Mike Krumboltz
June 24, 2008 11:56:54 AM
More Tim Hawkins
Corporation Worship



...just because he is so gut busting!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Tim Hawkins on Tech Support


Before I got a Mac, this song described my life!
Click to play The Impact News
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The New NES Conversion Model

Although this controller won't be seen by many people because it's under the hood of a car, we still applaud this maker who managed to create a giant NES controller that sits on top of his car's motor. Playing a game with this controller might be difficult if you are driving, although you'll be the popular one at the tailgate party.

My biggest questions... Does this make this model a "GO GREEN" car, and how much more efficient is the mileage after Restart and Enter?

Friday, June 20, 2008

A Few New Teen Stats and Trends
ypulse had a great summary the other day of some new research about teen preferences in a bunch of areas. i’ll break it into 5 posts. second up: Internet

- Teens spend 12.5 hours online while tweens spend only 6.4 hours (typical week during school year)

- Teens have grown tired of MySpace and have moved on to Facebook in the past six months

- Only a couple of virtual worlds are on tweens’ radars

- The top sites tweens visit — Webkinz among both tween boys and tween girls. Neopets, owned by Viacom’s interactive unit as well as Nick.com

- Club Penguin remains in third place for tween girls and dropped from 11th place to 13th place for tween boys since last summer

- AddictingGames is fast becoming the top casual gaming site among all youth, not just the kids and teens

Thanks Marco for the update!




I Just Pity the Fool!

At $200, Burger King Does World's Most Expensive Burger

20080619-bkcharity.jpg

The pricey burger is for charity, and it's only available in one Burger King in West London once a week. Here's what it's made up of:

The fine ingredients of what is called simply 'The Burger' include Wagyu beef, white truffles, Pata Negra ham slices, Cristal onion straws, Modena balsamic vinegar, lambs lettuce, pink Himalayan rock salt, organic white wine and shallot infused mayonnaise in an Iranian saffron and white truffle dusted bun.

Another megaexpensiveburger. Meh.

Posted by Adam Kuban, June 19, 2008 at 1:00 PM

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Cardboard Testimonies



What would your cardboard have on it? Are you trusting in and on Jesus Christ to transform your life into the image of our Lord? How has your life been transformed by the Saving Grace of Jesus Christ? What's your story? Are you prepared to share it?

Lost....Found!
Unloved...Loved!
Suicidal...Living Passionate for Jesus!
Manager...Minister!
Hopeless...Have Hope!
Clone High School Musical


Who would have thought that even the warriors of Star Wars would catch the "High School Musical" Fever. I guess they just..."Gotta, Gotta, Gotta Get in the Game." Obiwan is such a skeptic sometimes!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

My Day at the Office
Just a few of my books that were ruined with mold from the flooding of Agape.

My Office after the destruction crew finished. Almost as bad as Doug Fields' office after the weekend.

My home away from home. I think I am suffering from white lung!

Guess what I get to do tomorrow?
Trying to see the glass as half full!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Early Christian Church

Archaeologists have found what they believe is the earliest discovery of a Christian Church, in a cave in Jordan, dating from 33 AD. Pretty amazing, Huh?

Archaeologist Abdel-Qader Hussein, head of the Rihab Center for Archaeological Studies, Abdul Qader al-Husan told The Jordan Times:’We have uncovered what we believe to be the first church in the world, dating from 33 AD to 70 AD.

‘We have evidence to believe this church sheltered the early Christians - the 70 disciples of Jesus Christ.’

Mr Hussein said there was evidence that the underground cave was used in the first century after Christ’s death, which would make it the oldest Christian site of worship in the world.

The cave was unearthed in the northern Jordanian city of Rihab after three months of excavation and shows evidence of early Christian rituals.

Agape Christian Church doesn't look much different after all the damage caused by the flood and sewage water.

Thanks Marko for the heads up!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Agape Impact Students @ CIY 2oo8


Can You believe that HS students were this awake at 7:30am?

Buck Buck... it isn't just for Fat Albert and the Gang anymore. Definitely a CIY attraction!

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Agape Has Left the Building

After a great week at CIY, this is the picture I came back to. Yes, the flood did much more damage than previously expected. Now all the walls, flooring, and cabinetry has been removed out of our Family Life Center and Atrium. WOW... What a mess. We have much work to do after Serve Pro clears and drys everything out. This is a real shot in the arm to the momentum we were building in our student and children's ministry.

But… God is so amazingly awesome. It is in times of struggle that we see the greatest work of our Lord. We are unified in our efforts, people are being saved, and He continues to provide for our need.

All our services will be held at 10am. in the Oakley Auditorium at Ivy Tech Community College directly across the Highway from the church.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Headed to CIY

Just a quick note to let all my fellow Blog friends know that I am headed to the CIY Conference in Anderson, IN. It will be a week until my next post; however, I will be making frequent updates to my Twitter page, which will keep everyone informed of all my happenings throughout this week. You can catch the excitement here or on my Facebook page.

Pray that our students would develop a heart of passion for our Lord and Savior. Pray that they might hunger and thirst for Christ and His righteousness because of this week long experience. It is my desire to see all attending students from everywhere "Move" from apathy to excitement and passion.

Also, keep Agape Christian Church in your prayers, as we recover from serious flood issues from the weekend. Great headway has been made to clean up, but much work still ahead.

May God bless you all,
Shan

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Agape Flooded by 7 Inches of Rain Last Night

Family Life Center

FLC Entrance

Foyer and G-Force Sign In

Kitchen and Glen's Legs

My Library Under Water

My Office Under 2 Inches of Water