22 December 2006

You look so much like... So, I am really bad with who people look like. Someone told me that I look like a country music singer. Seeing that I don't and won't listen to country music... I won't really ever know. Now, there's a site that tells you what celebrity you look like. I still don't see it, but it is fun to see the results.

21 December 2006

A Close call...

While driving on the frontage road on the South side of Black Road I had a close call today. This morning, actually all day it has been raining. As you can see from the picture there is a 90 degree turn on the frontage road. Many cars have driven off the road at this corner. I was able to see this first hand today. A car came up on the turn very fast and then hit the curb, it then jumped the curb practically doing a 180 degree turn in the air. The car landed on the curb after skidding across the grass. It then spun out on the street head on in the lane about 10 feet infront of me. I steered around the car into oncoming traffic, narrowly missing an accident. All in all it was a huge blessing being able to avoid the accident. I only wish two things would have been different: a) I had a camera with me to take pictures to post (b) I had a video camera rolling, it was like a scene out of a movie. This would have been great on YouTube.

20 December 2006

After a LONG afternoon of Christmas shopping, it seems appropriate to see just how rich you are. Christmas seems so quickly forgotten of its real meaning and message; it quickly becomes more about selfishness. A couple days ago my daughter and I were out running some errands. While out, we had the opportunity to give back. This provided a perfect moment to discuss how blessed we are to be able to celebrate Christmas, not just the gifts. So instead of comparing, try checking out how rich you are...

18 December 2006

After the survivor finale last night we had way too much fun creating a "personalized nutcracker".
Survivor Finale. A great time with everyone that was able to come. I was glad that Yul won.

13 December 2006

Quote of the day... and my thoughts

"Whatever you are, be a good one." -Abraham Lincoln

I read this quote in a book I am going through. As I thought more about it some people that fit the quote came to mind.

• My wife - she is just simply great... she is a good: friend, mom, thinker, brainstormer, sudoko-er, apple cider maker, I could go on and on and on...
• My kids are good at making me laugh. I need that right now.
• My dad is good at leadership, grace, patience, knowing what to say.
• H. Solo productions is sooo good with graphic design and fast at it. He has a great eye for design, also a very good worship leader. He has such a good connection with leading people to honor God.
• Rhoda is so good at reaching out, finding new ways to get new students connected to God. She is so good at commitment and loyalty.
• Camille is such a good administrator, which I am thankful for. I am not great at administration, so it is a blessing to have her on the team.

A sign of a leader is to know your weaknesses and place people around you with strengths in the areas you are weak in. I am thankful for people that are good at the things I am not. Another sign of a good leader is to let people know what they are good and the good things they do.

11 December 2006

I have become an elf

I jumped in and found the humor of becoming an elf...
A staple in most youth ministry settings is pop and pizza. I ran across a some interesting effects of drinking a Coke:
* In The First 10 minutes: 10 teaspoons of sugar hit your system. (100% of your recommended daily intake.) You don’t immediately vomit from the overwhelming sweetness because phosphoric acid cuts the flavor allowing you to keep it down.
* 20 minutes: Your blood sugar spikes, causing an insulin burst. Your liver responds to this by turning any sugar it can get its hands on into fat. (There’s plenty of that at this particular moment)
* 40 minutes: Caffeine absorption is complete. Your pupils dialate, your blood pressure rises, as a response your livers dumps more sugar into your bloodstream. The adenosine receptors in your brain are now blocked preventing drowsiness.
* 45 minutes: Your body ups your dopamine production stimulating the pleasure centers of your brain. This is physically the same way heroin works, by the way.
* 60 minutes: The phosphoric acid binds calcium, magnesium and zinc in your lower intestine, providing a further boost in metabolism. This is compounded by high doses of sugar and artificial sweeteners also increasing the urinary excretion of calcium.
* 60 Minutes: The caffeine’s diuretic properties come into play. (It makes you have to pee.) It is now assured that you’ll evacuate the bonded calcium, magnesium and zinc that was headed to your bones as well as sodium, electrolyte and water.
* 60 minutes: You’ll start to have a sugar crash. You may become irritable and/or sluggish. You’ve also now, literally, peed away all the water that was in the Coke. But not before infusing it with valuable nutrients your body could have used for things like even having the ability to hydrate your system or build strong bones and teeth.
Just a few interesting tid bits for those of you Coke drinkers out there...
Interesting? Read more.
Jack is back... I know that my wife and I are excited for 24 to start back up.

07 December 2006

I cannot believe it... no Office
tonight. Bummer.
Ode to the 'bou

Lately Caribou Coffee has gotten some less than positive remarks concerning their WiFi service from someone that will remain nameless.

It is true, it is annoying having to log back in every hour. The part that is getting negative reaction is that you have to ask for an access card. Evidently they are difficult to come by. I guess that store employees hoard them or something?

I just sat back down from receiving not one but two cards just from asking. Aren't I lucky? Now if they would only make it so that you don't have to use the cards. I suppose it could be worse, I could be at Starbucks and not be able to connect at all the the pricey service of T-mobile.

By the way someone needs to show me how to post a picture so it's not backwards...

06 December 2006

I cannot believe this kid... you have to give him credit for trying it.

Thanks to Marko for the link.

05 December 2006

Attract or Pursue

I had a great conversation with a friend yesterday. We met at one of the best places to meet, second only to the 'bou. So, I grabbed my triple grande latte and then was given some help realizing that I met Scott on the wrong day. Our meeting was supposed to be Wednesday and not Monday... sorry Scott. He was generous enough to let me steal an hour and a half of his day off (thanks). Our conversation was wrapping up as we came across a topic I love discussing.

How are we, as the church, reaching people?

Are we attracting people to church or are we pursuing them?

What are the pros and cons of pursuing or attracting? Pursuing is a way of life in youth ministry. We have an incentive for everything... bring a visitor once in your life and you'll win an iPod. Pursuing seems to compromise the values of our message. Maybe a compromise is done unknowingly, but pursuing is more about getting the "person" and less about the "message". When we are attractive, there is something desirable in us that draws that person to want what we have.

I met with a group of youth pastors a few months back where we discussed this topic, Josh blogged about it. Bill Daily shared some marketing essentials. Bill's worked for Gatorade, Mastercard and Oakley as the VP of marketing. Now he's doing the marketing at Purpose Driven. Bill had some amazing thoughts on marketing your ministry. He verbalized this tension between attracting vs. pursuing the best I have ever heard. Here is what he had to say about it:
1. Don’t assume that you know the audience or what they want. You are most likely not going to get it right.
2. Understand the world the student lives in. Subtly grab a small piece of territory and connect with them.
3. Understand their beliefs, attitudes, and behaviors.
I still don't quite know how to do this right. Maybe some of you out there know some things I haven't discovered yet. But, I love discovering the process of making your life and ministry "attractive". Making everything about it attractive... the smell, the look, the feel, the atmosphere... everything. How is that done? I think there are a small number of churches that have figured this out.

04 December 2006

Happy Birthday Emma!

We had a great day yesterday. My daughter celebrated her 5th birthday. I cannot believe how big she is getting. I am so proud of her. She is so beautiful and smart, she is turning out just like her mother. Emma had a great time with friends and family all celebrating. Glenda made a great cake; Emma requested a lavagirl cake. We started the day out waking Emma up singing to her. It was so great to see her have such a great day. My favorite thing she said all day was to her brother, "Sam, I am older than you, I'm five now." I can't believe it! She's 5... my little girl is growing up.
Flurry of activity

Whew! Since the Thanksgiving weekend it has been a whirlwind. I have really wanted to post about it, so I am going to give some quick highlights.

1. Thanksgiving at my grandparents. My grandma would talk every now and then like Yoda. "Coffee, would you like some?" Going out to my uncle's property. My kids had so much fun chasing the goats. Seriously, he owns 7 goats if i remember right. I was surprised at how my kids enjoyed feeding them. My son thought it was more fun to chase them. I was very proud of my daughter she did great (not a real animal lover). My wife wrote more about the goats. It was great to be with family.

2. IHSA Football State Championships. We drove home from Des Moines, IA and arrived at 11:30am on Saturday. A couple of coaches and I left for the IL high school football state championship game at 12:30PM. An excellent championship game between Mt. Carmel and Wheaton/Warrenville South.

3. 2nd Annual Stadium Turkey Bowl. We start off bowling with a frozen turkey. This is not as easy as it may sound. One wrong move and you hit a turkey leg and... gutter ball. After bowling with a frozen turkey we head out for some flag football.

4. Snow! December 1st it snowed. This is a controversial subject since some here in the Chicagoland area aren't fond of the winters. I love them. Let it snow! To add to the fun, I get to do some snow plowing this winter.