Wednesday, February 27, 2008


I have three kids. Two boys and a girl. They are all in their twenties. They are all married. All of them are funny! Yes, I am a bit partial, but they really are funny. Two of them and their spouses live in Northern California. The other one and his wife live in Texas.

Often someone will send out an e-mail about some random item or event. It is at that time we all "pounce." We begin putting in our two-cents worth. The stuff that begins to fly around is really very funny. Inside family stuff comes up and topics change quicker than a wet baby.

Today our daughter sent out a picture of a huge roller coaster. There were pictures from various angles to illustrate the severity of the drops. It twisted and turned. It went upside down. The last picture had a young lady getting off the ride with wet pants. This was all the group needed. They jabbed, joked and ran down random paths. I read their comments to my wife. We laughed.

Okay, most reading their comments would not find them all that humorous. But if you are a parent you know what it is like to enjoy your kids enjoying each other and life.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008


I came across an interesting statement. I believe it was made by Zuckerberg the guy behind Facebook. He said, “We want a system where anyone can develop without having our permission. There are things that we will never think of.”

This got me thinking about organizational dynamics. What makes the difference between an organizational environment (OE) that is empowering (without permission) and an OE that is controlling (withholding permission)? Here are some quick hitting thoughts.


“Information is power” attitude. I have the information, you don’t. I will release it at my discretion. You want it? Come to me! All ‘need to know’ stuff flows through a few
Distrust is assumed. People cannot be trusted, so don’t.
Multiple layers of decision making. If those closest to the results cannot make the decisions there is a control issue by those further out.
Risk is not rewarded.


Risk is not only rewarded it is encouraged
Trust is assumed. People are given the positive benefit of the doubt
Decision making is given to those most affected by the choice
Healthy disagreement is cultivated
Permission is pre-given. Make the call and we can discuss it later.
Mission is the guiding light, not mistake avoidance

I need to unpack this more. But I tend to think when I talk, or in this case write.

Monday, February 25, 2008


Yesterday in church our Pastor continued his series on relationships. He spoke on marriage. Joni and I along with a newly married couple (a tad over one year) were asked to share perspectives on this cherished union from the two extreme points. Ours was from the more “seasoned” viewpoint.

We have been married 32 years, will be 33 this coming June. We attend a brand new church. We began the church in October 2007. And like many new church starts it is populated with young people. So not only does our length of marriage put us in the “mature” category, we are the most mature participants in this church. It is much like attending a church full of our children’s peers. We enjoy the energy such youth instills in us.

Having to think through some of the stuff we have learned in our 32 plus years I thought I would share a few of them here.

  • It is not your spouse’s job to make you happy. Each marriage partner needs to be happy in their own right. If you abdicate your happiness to your spouse then you will be disappointed. And if they cease to make you happy you will look somewhere else, or to someone else for your happiness. Take responsibility for your happiness!
  • Your spouse should compliment, but not complete you. Looking for and hoping to find the person who might complete you is pure Hollywood. It indicates that if you choose not to be married at some level you are incomplete. Or if you get married and you don’t genuinely discover your completeness you will assume you missed out and will look for your “completeness” in another. When it is understood we each need to be complete in and of ourselves then our spouse will be a wonderful compliment to who we are.
  • Find your marriage sweet spot. There are more than enough people who want to tell us how our marriage should be. Self-Help books, Pastors, teachers, counselors, etc…. Ultimately you need to find what works for you and do it. Attempting to craft your marriage relationship so it will look like someone else is a recipe for frustration
  • Don’t speak for your spouse. Often people will want you to commit for your spouse or share your spouse’s opinion in their absence. Don’t do this. You speak for yourself and allow them to speak for themselves. You will save a great deal of misunderstanding.
  • Love Jesus, love each other and do the best you can. Enough said.

Thursday, February 14, 2008


Today the two ladies that work in my office were gone. This left me, Chris Conrad and Traver Butcher. We delcared it "guys day." Traver created a sign we placed outside our office. It had pictures of "real" guys, guys: Bruce Willis, Tom "Top Gun" Cruise and others. The text included on the sign made it clear that today was guys day and people should enter at their own risk.

Chris loudly played music from Rocky. We talked very loud. We relaxed in our conversation not worried if the sports topics we chose would leave the ladies out. No worries it was "guys day!"

Every person who entered our office suite commented on our sign. We would come out and greet them letting them know the benefits of "guys day." We went to a guys lunch. We went to sports bar. It too was loud and the food was excellent.

This was really a fun day. We even got work done. Maybe we will make every Valentine's Day "guys day" in the office.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008


Today we got a dose of snow and ice. First time in awhile I had to scrape my windshield. I chatted with a friend from San Diego. He told me it was 90 there. Pretty close to the 20's I found myself. Fortunately I had little reason to be outside. In fact I spent my day in the confines of my warm office. I like snow & ice best when I view it from my office and/or house window.

This coming Saturday I am registered to run in a 5K. It is suppose to be thirties and sunny. I trust this will be the case. I am pretty much a "sissy" runner. That is I prefer to have perfect outdoor running conditions. The treadmill can be boring, but it is warm. I have two other guys I am running with, so positive peer pressure will get me to the course regardless of the weather.

Sunday, February 10, 2008


The article's title of today's Indianapolis Star caught my attention: "Are we ready for a black president?" The same question has been asked as to our national readiness for a woman president.

I am not a political pundit. I am not an expert on anything democratic or republican. I do, however, find fascination with the process. I sense this is an exciting time in our political process. And like many I have opinions.

This being said, I have an opinion to the question posed by the article's title. I think it makes absolutely no difference if our next President is black, a woman, an elder statesman or whatever other label the media might create. I think what is needed is competency! Regardless of their color, ethnic background, age or sex if they can do the job, if they can lead, if they can inspire us beyond ourselves, if they can help us believe in ourselves and our America we are ready for them.

This is what JFK did in the few years he gave the country in the 60's. He dreamed big dreams. He challenged us to look toward the moon. He courageously stared down Russia during the Cuban missle crisis.

This is what Regan did in the 80's. He reignited the imgination of the American People. We believed enough to risk again. We took pride in our nation. We attempted to the do the right thing more often the wrong.

I do not suggest an attempt to recreate what they did, but to learn from their effectiveness. We are in a very different environment, but regardless leaders with courage, insight, vision and commitment to right change will always be followed.

Thursday, February 7, 2008


Today I am at Asbury Seminary. We are doing a pre-assessment for potential church planters. 16 potential planters are here. These 16 are currently attending Asbury Theological Seminary. They have come to explore the possibility of planting a church.

The National Superintendent of New Zealand of The Wesleyan Church is also here. He is attending the Beeson Program offered here. We are sharing ideas as to how to effectively minister in an increasingly secular society.

There is a team of us sharing our hearts and experience: Chris Conrad (Director of Church Planting for The Wesleyan Church), Jesse Pratt (Church Planter), Bryan Feathers (Director of Church Planting for the Ohio District of The Wesleyan Church), and Genetta Herrera (Founder of Great team! Great talents!

What do I see when I look around this room? I see a variety of new churches that may bubble up out of the hope, vision and heart of those here. They all may not plant a church, but they all will participate in a missional multiplication movement. In reality it is not about church planting, but missionally engaging our culture through a variety of methods.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008


Helmut Thielicke wrote: "The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Give as much of yourself as you know, to as much of Christ as you know. It will cost you nothing, and it will cost you everything. But there will be a wonder after wonder, and every wonder true."

This seems to illustrate the process of holiness. Give all that we know of ourselves to all that we know of God. It is daily. It is consistent. It is developmental. It is a journey that will take a lifetime.

Sunday, February 3, 2008


Its here! The close of my holiday season. I begin the holidays with Thanksgiving and conclude it with the Super Bowl. Neither of my teams, Chargers/Colts, made it. So I simply want a good game.

I am blogging while watching the pre-game stuff. Lots of diversity. Although I am not sure what I think about Ryan Seacrest and the Red Carpet. It seems to me if a Red Carpet is needed at all for a football game it ought to at least have grass stains on it.

Paula Abdul has just finished her debut song of "Dance Like There is no Tomorrow." First time she has released a song in many years. I am not a media critic, but if she wants to wait ten plus years until the next one I am sure few would be disappointed.

I love the commericals. I actually look foward to them. You know it has to be a special day when the ads get as much media attention as the game. Commercials promote the commercials. There must be an illustration there somewhere, but I'm not sure what it is.

I am off to a party soon. Food and football! I am already looking forward to the next holiday season.