Archive for the 'Random Thoughts' Category
November 8th, 2011 by Burlw
Last Saturday, my wife and I competed in the Savannah, GA 1/2 Marathon. It was a great event in that beautiful city! We had a few pre-race setbacks, when Casper had to be put in a walking boot due to a stress fracture in her foot a few weeks before the race. She got permission to take the boot off to do the race and then right back into it. Due to that, she asked me if I would walk the race with her instead of running it. Along the way I learned some valuable things.
1. Many people take off like madmen at the start…and then our walking pace passed them later in the race.
2. Finishing still felt good!
3. In order to finish, one has to start!
4. There is great room for improvement no matter what race we are in.
I thought those points apply to life as much as to running races. Get started…then persevere to the finish!
August 7th, 2011 by Burlw
The number one thing to keep in mind is that Jesus is number one on your list. Is everything you are doing making HIM known to others? If not, ask yourself, “Is it worth doing?”
July 24th, 2011 by Burlw
Today, July 24th, is my mother’s birthday. It is a big one for her. (I am of course smart enough not to announce her age on the internet.) She taught me much of what I know about being a servant leader. She led by example in ways that affected the rest of my life. For example: I can’t count the number of times that for one reason or another I got up early and walked into the living room to find my mother sitting there reading her Bible or praying. I knew she was praying for me when I was walking close to God, and I knew she was praying for me when I wasn’t. She was always helping people out. We lived in the country during my teen years. We attended a small country church that had an average Sunday morning attendance of 13! (And our family made up 4 of that count.) I remember mom giving the pastor’s wife a hug when they were ready to quit, and just listening to her cry. We seemed to always be able to make room when someone needed a place to stay “for a bit”, when they were “in between jobs” or take care of the kids for a few weeks when the parents were out of commission. Thanks Mom for being an incredible example! Have an awesome birthday! (And remember that you aren’t as old as Grandnana! When God said, “Let there be light!” She flipped the switch.)
July 16th, 2011 by Burlw
As a Christian, we believe that the only way to find forgiveness of sins and be found holy in the sight of God is through belief in Jesus Christ, the Son of God who came to earth in bodily form, was crucified on a cross, died, and three days later rose from the grave proving His dominance over sin and death. To say the least, we sell an odd product. To those who don’t believe, it seems to be foolishness. Jesus commands us to be salesmen. (Matt 28:19, Acts 1:8) Some would say, “We aren’t selling anything, it is a free gift.” I would respond by saying it is a free gift that costs you everything! While it is a bad comparison, it is a bit like being given a “free puppy”. The initial gift of the puppy is free, but then come the vet bills, food costs, collars, fencing, water bowls, food bowls, chew toys… When someone gives their heart to God, believing on His Son Jesus to be not only their Savior but their Lord, they are giving up their own will and desire and replacing it with God’s will and desire for their life. Now, nothing belongs to them anymore. While as a believer, I know that it is a great life to serve an Awesome God, the thought crossed my mind this morning that for the unbeliever, we are crazy!
July 13th, 2011 by Burlw
One of my students coined a new phrase today, “The investment marriage”. We have all heard of the “starter marriage”. Her idea is a little different. Marry the old rich guy as her “Investment marriage”. Then when he croaks, she will be financially set and ready to marry for love. This has nothing to do with Christian Leadership, but once in a while, a little demented humor is fun.
July 11th, 2011 by Burlw
Yesterday in church, our pastor was talking about the difference between precepts and preferences. Precepts are commands, but the word starts with a “P” so it works better with Preferences in a sermon title. In the world of Christian leadership it is easy to see our preferences on equal with God’s commands. We are commanded to go, to preach the gospel to all nations. That isn’t a preference. We don’t get a choice on that one. HOW we go about doing that is a preference. Some people are great musical composers and can create songs that bring people to know Jesus! Personally, I can’t even play a 6 string guitar. God gave people like Billy Graham that special ability to be able to communicate very personally to thousands of people at once. To others, talking one on one is your forte. God never told us exactly how to fulfill the great commission, HE commands that we fulfill it. Issues come up when we confuse the two. God didn’t give us the 10 suggestions, He gave us the 10 commandments. Likewise, when we try to make our personal preferences the same as God’s commands, we are out of line. When we insist on one style of music being holy while another isn’t, or one version of the bible is the only acceptable one or that one non culturally relevant interpretation of scripture is the rule for all people (ie. women must wear dresses because of the verse that says they shouldn’t wear men’s clothing.) Those are preferences, not commandments. We can’t say, “I don’t have the gift of evangelism”. It isn’t an excuse. How we evangelize may be different, but God didn’t give us the option of not telling people about His Son. In your own spiritual journey, has the confusion of commands and preferences caused you any trouble?
July 7th, 2011 by Burlw
I bet most of us haven’t thought about if our church’s website would meet God’s standards. What are HIS standards for technology? They didn’t have websites in the Bible, but HE does tell us that whatever our hand finds to do, that we are to do it with all our might! (Ecclesiastes 9:10) In other words, while we are here on earth, we are do do with excellence whatever we do. Our church’s website should be the best that we can possibly make it. That doesn’t mean that it has to be the biggest part of the budget, but it should be a tool that helps the church with its mission for evangelism rather than hurting it. If you are looking for specific guidelines to spruce up your church’s website, I would like to recommend checking out David Gillaspy’s site where he lays out 25 design tips for church websites in a very succinct and user friendly way. Most importantly, does your site have a purpose or is it just there because someone said your church should have a website? What is it doing to help you in spreading the Gospel to your community and letting people know about the vision of your church?
July 1st, 2011 by Burlw
Years ago, I got my first debit card. It didn’t have the ability to be used as a credit card, it only worked at the bank ATM. It did have one great feature though. There was NO expiration date on the card. Years later, the bank sent me a new card. I didn’t activate it. They called a few months later to find out why and I told them, the new card has an expiration date, the old one doesn’t, so I will stick with the old one…which I did. In the end, I moved, and that regional bank isn’t in other parts of the country so I had to get a new one. Now, my bank just sent me my new card…which means I have to update all my accounts. Wishing today that we could go back to the days of cards with no expiration dates. If you are a leader in the banking industry, maybe you can make that happen…adverize it, or let me know, and I will move to your bank to stay!
June 28th, 2011 by Burlw
I wrote the same post on my startstuff.net blog today, but thought both audiences would be interested.
In a post I wrote a few weeks ago, I called for a revolution in education. In a follow up post, I explained one way to work on that change in the educational setting. Today is day two of that experiment. My students are blogging and commenting on each other’s blogs in Spanish! I even heard through the grapevine that some of them are having fun with it! Some have redesigned the pages to make them more personal, but all have begun writing in the target language! Most importantly, we are successfully integrating their interests with the subject matter which of course makes me happy as an educator! It was stuff worth starting. I will post more updates as I see more results. (If you want to check out their blogs, they are open to the world to see, you will have to scroll down a bit to their names to see the links to each individual blog. I only have links up during this summer session so if you are reading this months from now, the link won’t work…and they are all in Spanish.)
June 27th, 2011 by Burlw
We talk a lot about vision in the world of leadership. Visions aren’t the same as Dreams. It is important to take time to dream, dream big! My current dream is to start a mini-golf course that can expand to a family fun center that can expand to an amusement park. Crazy, lots of hurdles, needs money, but a fun dream! Don’t forget to have a dream. Walter Disney did and look what he and a mouse were able to accomplish!