Archive for the ‘vision’ Category

What If…

Posted: March 29, 2011 in Leadership, Lessons, vision
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What if all that we have gone through, good and bad, had a bigger purpose?  What if the events of our life was to shape us and mold us into the person God intended us to be?  What if the hurts and pains of life were designed to build our character for something greater in the future?

I know, many of you are reading this and saying…duh, you are just now getting that?  Well, the simple answer is…Yes.  I remember coming out of college and thinking I had the world by the tail.  I was going to have success and change the world (just like the commencement speaker at graduation said I would).  Well after graduation, life started happening and I experienced “the real world” that they never told me about in college.  I complained to God and told Him how he wasn’t playing fair.  I had given up a lot to purse Him and his plan for the world and He was not returning the favor, or was he?

Graduation was nearly 20 years ago and I am a different person than I was back then.  My journey has not been easy and I would not wish it on my worst enemy, however, I wouldn’t trade it.  It has helped shape my character, my competency, and my compassion for others.  Here a few of my lessons I have learned along the journey…

  1. Find the positive in the negative
  2. Be truthful, even if it may hurt.
  3. If you must make a hard decision, do it with integrity.
  4. Don’t judge (my younger years was full of judgement, and it has come back to bite me)
  5. Be patient with others, they are on a journey…just like me
  6. encourage, love and inspire others to be great

There are many more I have learned.  I am sure there are many more I still need to learn.  I haven’t gotten life figured out yet but I will keep adding each lesson I learn into my arsenal.  Life is still hard at times, however, I am on the journey to something great.

I am just curios…What have you learned?

Here is a little quiz you can take.  Simply answer with “improvement” or “not improvement”…

  1. Cordless Phones…improvement or not improvement
  2. McDonalds……improvement or not improvement
  3. Hawaii 5-0…..improvement or not improvement
  4. American Idol……..improvement or not improvement
  5. Email…………..improvement or not improvement
  6. Denver Nuggets (after the trade)………improvement or not improvement
  7. President Obama………..improvement or not improvement
  8. Caller ID…………improvement or not improvement
  9. TV Programming…..improvement or not improvement
  10. Verizon……improvement or not improvement

There are a lot of things that may or may not improve the quality of your life.  However, there is one thing we can all do….do something to improve the quality of life for someone else.  A simple smile, a nice tip to the waitress, a kind comment to a stranger, picking up that wrapper off the ground, planting a tree, or calling someone to say hi.  When we serve others, we change the quality of life for a lot of people.  A kind word can give someone confidence and confidence is a key to success and that persons success can improve the quality of life for many others.  Picking up that wrapper seems so minor but everyone enjoys visiting a clean place, it feels good and it improves that quality of life for all who experience it.

So what are you doing to improve the quality of life for others?

My Church Website…

Posted: September 11, 2009 in Leadership, Thoughts, vision
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websiteI read an interesting article today about church marketing.  The article points out that most websites point out the positive of the church (and often times not truthfully).  But, what if a church website was honest about their weakness.  Instead of trying to hide them, and hope no one sees them, what if we mentioned them up front?  Here are a few from the article:

  • Our sermons run an hour plus and our pews aren’t padded: You do the math.
  • We work our volunteers to death. Then grumble when they want a break.
  • Drums are evil.
  • Our Sunday morning service is a major production. Sit back and enjoy the show.
  • Our people probably won’t talk to you until you volunteer for something and even then don’t hold your breath.
  • We pay lip service to social justice.
  • We stand up and sit down a lot, so try to keep up, OK?
  • Our sermons have more movie clips than Bible quotes.
  • You’re going to get lost in our sprawling campus. Bring a map or hire a guide.
  • We believe homosexuality is…
  • The only diversity you’ll find here is in our stock photography.
  • We’re so heavenly minded that we’re no earthly good.
  • We plan more social events than Bible studies.
  • Nothing ever starts on time at our church.
  • Our pastor is a minor celebrity with an ego to match.
  • We think the role of women in leadership is…
  • We’re really old.
  • Churchese spoken here. Translators are not available.
  • We’re good people but we’re going to judge you.
  • Our children’s ministry is an after thought.
  • We hug.
  • On Sunday morning you’ll never/always see an altar call.
  • Our people talk more gossip than gospel.
  • We lift up our hands and get a little crazy when we worship. It’s going to freak you out.

So, what would your church website look like, if you were honest?

Life is a process of events and moments that help mold and shape you into what God’s desire is.  That sounds great but moments can be hard.  Moments in life are often painful and full of questions.  However, think about this, what if every moment in my life, and yours,  were driving us to a destination?  It doesn’t matter if the moments are good or bad, they are the fuel to push us to a greater destination.  Moments help fine-tune us.

Moments may drive us to a destination but the road is paved with attitude.  Moments have the potential to launch us into the next phase or sink us into despair. Like standing at a crossroad with one sign pointing to the left and one to the right, I must decide my attitude. That attitude will shape and formulate my destination.

Embrace the moments of life and let them drive you to your destination, as long as you have the right attitude. It is not easy at times (I sometimes relapse with a bad attitude) but stay focused and stay on track.

Imagine if our churches were filled with embraced moments with good attitudes?  Imagine if the work place were filled with embraced moments with good attitudes?

I recently read an article by Sam Chand asking the question; Would you rather be successful or fulfilled?  Interesting question.  Which one would you like for your life?  If you answer honestly you would say, both.  We each desire both success and fulfillment.  Here is a brief rundown of the differences:

  1. Success is external, fulfillment is internal
  2. Success is measurable, fulfillment is hard to measure
  3. Success is temporal; fulfillment is eternal
  4. Success you work for; fulfillment you live for
  5. Success is taught; fulfillment is learned

Both are good but fulfillment is preferred over success.

4 vs. 6.5 Billion

Posted: October 2, 2008 in Thoughts, Uncategorized, vision
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My recent journey through Church Planting Boot Camp was a major mile marker in my discovery of who I am and what God has called me to do.  During my time there, I was presented with this thought…”There are approximately 6.5 billion people on the planet and God intentionally selected me for an assignment.”  The assignment is planting a church in Parker, Colorado. 

As I think about that, my first reaction is, “God, surely you could have found someone better?”  The truth is, as I think about it, He couldn’t have!!!  I Corinthians tells me that “God deliberatlely chooses the exploited, ovelooked and abused…”  He deliberetly picked me!!!!  He knows my strengths and my weaknesses and out of 6.5 billion people…HE PICKED ME.

I know, you are wondering where the 4 vs 6.5 billion people?  Well, out of 6.5 billion he called 2 couples, the Hamps and the Gullions to partner together with the same vision to reach Parker, Colorado.   This assignment is bigger than one couple.  This assignment is bigger than 2 couples.  However, it is such an incredible assignment, God needed two couples to come together to begin the journey of launching something bigger than either couple could imagine.  Two couples, with one vision…Help families to Discover their place in the Family of God. 4 vs 6.5 billion people and He picked us!

My family and I are about to take a huge leap of faith.  We are going from a home we own, a salary that gives us reliable consistent income, a school system we are comfortable and familiar with, and not to mention being close to family members (which helps when we need a sitter) to a life uncertainty.  The crazy thing about it is, IT IS MY CHOICE to do this.

Looking from the outside it appears to be social and financial suicide, AKA, stupidity.  I can certainly see how others might think that.  The truth is, I know I am doing the right thing.  I have never been more sure in my life.  I have control and I choose to place myself in the uncontrollable.

Several years ago when Cindy and I first got married (15 years this month), we made $305 a month.  We had $301 in school loans to pay each month and a whole lot of other living obligations.  Needless to say, we didn’t have much, but we made it and our faith was strong.  We trusted God for our needs and amazingly He came through.  Our rent was paid, our loans were paid, we had food, and we even were able to save some money to buy our first purchase, a couch and love seat.  Wow, those were the days.  How times have changed…

Now we are making more money then we ever have.  We have a retirement account, vacation, and even health insurance.  Sounds great.  The problem is, is that we have acquired more stuff and more debt.  We fight to survive and our faith is not nearly as strong as it once was.  I am not saying God doesn’t meet our needs today.  He does!  But, I miss the excitement of the unknown.  I miss the expectancy of God meeting my needs.  The truth is, I miss the faith I once had.

Many may think I am have caught the “stupidity” bug and are hoping that I come out of it quickly.  However, I feel like I have caught the infectious “FAITH FEVER” and I hope others catch it.  Am I scared?  Yes.  Do I get nervous?  Yes.  Do I worry?  Yes.  However, I know this time next year, my blog will be filled with faith stories.  Stories that will prove, this is not stupidity but faith.  And faith without works is dead!!!