Archive - January, 2011

Top-of-Mind Mondays

  • My search for social media metrics in church and ministry settings has largely come up short. I want to know how social media is affecting churches across the nation. Can you help?
  • I’m launching a new blog tomorrow. Can’t wait. I’ve been sitting on this one for awhile!
  • Half of the Super Bowl ad campaigns will feature or launch a social media endeavor. That’s a big deal.
  • On a related note, I read recently that 50% of Brits use social media while watching TV. They call it “Social TV”. Aptly named, but huge implications for the blending of new and old media. It’s a trend that will also continue. Need proof? Follow the #bachelor hashtag tonight.
  • I tried a little Twitter experiment at church this past weekend. I tweeted out towards the end of the message, “Find me and win a $50 gift card to the book store!” Within five minutes after service was over, I had a winner. Think people at your church aren’t on Twitter? Think again.
  • Need to lift your spirits? Watch the Interlude Dance. Some students at my alma mater, UNI, made this. I had the chance to see it live and in person last week and the guy is right, it is like a religious experience.
  • Apple TV just got a whole lot cooler. If you have the device and are comfy with hacking, get Seas0nPass. Well worth it.
  • I’m becoming averse to the term “Social Media Strategist,” and I am one. It feels…hokey.
  • My wife and I saw “No Strings Attached” over the weekend. Take out 50% of the curse words and the pointless drug use and you’ve got four stars. Otherwise, I’d give it three and a half.
  • By 2012, 88% of marketers will use social media tools.
  • What’s the latest and greatest in your world, deviants?

Who Is Using Social Media to Generate Real-World Results?

I posted a question on Twitter the other day:

I’m looking for real-world results from the impact of social media on churches. Any studies you could point me to? #helpless than a minute ago via HootSuite

I felt this was a big enough ask to post it here on the blog. So I posit to you the same question as above:


What are You Be-Holding?

I remember watching a news story once about a woman who died after she accidentally drove her car into a lake and drowned.

Tragic enough, the story had a dark twist of irony laced in. Family members who were interviewed about her death said she was absolutely paranoid about one thing: Drowning in a car submerged in water. The very thing she was terrified of–petrified, in fact–was the very thing that ended up happening to her. Tragic.

Family members filled out the story: She would purposefully avoid driving by bodies of water. She wouldn’t ride in cars with people unless she could drive. A seemingly normal woman who was completely immobilized by fear. A fear that eventually took her life.

What do you spend conscious energy purposefully avoiding during the course of your day? I’m not suggesting it will literally take your life, but it may end up taking more than you bargained for.

“What you behold, you become.” A popular idiom in Christian circles that carries tremendous power. What we focus on doing (or not doing) will eventually shape us into the people that we will be.

Question is, what are you beholding?

One-Sentence State of the Union

In light of last night’s State of the Union speech by President Obama, I want to ask you:

What would your State of the Union sound like?

Of course, “Union” could be anything from your own personal life to how your church is doing to what your dog had yesterday for lunch. It’s up to you.

Either way, let us know in the comments what your address would sound like in one sentence.

Here’s mine:

Learning how to be yourself and listen to what the desires of your heart truly are takes time, patience and the voices of those who’ve done it before.

What about you? Holler.

Something for Churches to Chew On

Something for churches to chew on:

‘There is nothing wrong with using a church website to simply give directions to the church or state the church’s beliefs,’ McConnell added. ‘However, we must realize that more and more people expect to be able to interact online without having to drive or make a phone call to the church.’

I find this satisfying.

We’re at a time in church communications where a website can be both/and. Both an informational outpost and an interactive online community. Clearly, though, church websites favor the former over the latter.

I think we’ll find this trend reversing in the next 5-10 years. Church websites will be places of rich interactivity, depth and content.

Websites will continue to provide information about the church. But more importantly, the interactivity within the site will allow you to experience the church before you even step foot inside.

I like how Fellowship Technology’s Curtis Simmons puts it:

‘Social networking tools have become an integral part of most people’s daily lives and relationships … If churches desire to connect with their congregation and community in meaningful ways, then they need to establish a strategy for actively engaging in the social media conversation. Thousands of individuals are sharing support and encouragement through these tools. The church needs to be an active participant in these conversations and connections.’

What’s your take?

Top-of-Mind Mondays

  • I spent a few days last week in San Diego visiting some friends. Want to know how the trip went? Here’s a look at some of the food I ate: Here and here and (not) here.
  • I’m thinking of picking up a goLITE sun lamp on the recommendation of Tim Ferriss. It’s cold here in the DeMo. Like, real cold. A little vitamin D never hurt anyone, right?
  • Ricky Gervais intrigues me. He goes from plump, affable comic to sarcastic, wry atheist, seemingly overnight. Even Hollywood noticed at the Golden Globes. Then there’s his interview with Piers Morgan. What do you think?
  • I have a newfound love for my iPad. After watching a few movies on the plane, writing a few pages and answering some emails, I don’t think I could find a better travel companion. Huzzah technology!
  • Want to know what Pandora station I’ve been digging on lately? Listen here.
  • I’ve begun implementing Freedom into my workflow. Seems you don’t realize how many digital distractions there are until you turn them off.
  • My little guy has peanut and milk allergies. Poor Finny! Good news is the doc thinks he’ll grow out of it in time for grade school. The cause? “We (Americans) are too clean.”
  • Slight change in programming. I’m fortunate enough to be able to head to Catalyst West. It was a last-minute addition, so I’ll be moving the digital ministry intensive to Saturday, March 12. Have you grabbed a ticket yet?
  • I snipped at an elderly man on the plane. We were jammed in like sardines and he wanted to move from his middle seat a few rows up to the empty one next to mine. Gah. I like my space (I am 6’4″), but that’s still no excuse. I felt terrible. I apologized profusely. We shared coffee together. All is well.
  • Julien Smith writes a guide on being awesome (Caution: Strong language, but I like the heart of what he’s getting at. Read past the curse words.).
  • What’s the latest and greatest in your world, deviants?

Should Atheism Offend?

Interesting thoughts from Ricky Gervais. Do you agree or disagree?

Of course, he may be referencing his close to this year’s Golden Globes, seen here:



Peter tried to fish.

Didn’t catch.

Grew tired.

You spoke.

They listened.

They fished.

They caught many fish.

What does this mean for our churches?

Top-of-Mind Mondays

  • Is it just me or did the Patriots lose last night? My father-in-law, born and raised in a Boston suburb, will not be happy. Happy for Shon Greene (former Hawkeye). Sad for all the little Boston kids who woke up crushed this morning.
  • For those who came to the party late, like me: Deadmau5.
  • I finally got my first bottle of Templeton Rye over the weekend (thanks Ma! Thanks Old Man!) It’s legit. Delivers as advertised. Smooth, sweet, delicious. It was Al Capone’s whiskey for a reason!
  • Launching a few new endeavors in the next couple of months. In March we’re doing a digital ministry intensive for this in the greater Des Moines area. 30 spots available…
  • …But before then, I’ll be launching a new site I’ve been tinkering on for the past few months. Can’t wait for you all to see it!
  • Blogging must run in my family or something. My baby sister is, in the words of a developer friend, “legit.” Iowa Girl Eats, a.k.a. Kristin Porter, a.k.a. Kristin Wise, is taking Des Moines (and the world) by storm. Go get ’em girl!
  • About two-thirds done with my first eBook “A Simple Guide to Blogging“. Jam-packed with bloggy goodness and the story of how this site came into being.
  • I finished Tim Ferriss’ 4-Hour Workweek over the weekend and cracked the (digital) spine on his new one, 4-Hour Body. Already liking Body more than Workweek. Tim seems more at home when talking about nutrition and fitness.
  • Holla! Social Network won best picture last night at the Golden Globes. People were upset because Inception didn’t win. They shouldn’t be. Network was clearly better. I liked Inception, but it was no Matrix, as people were claiming it to be.
  • What’s the latest and greatest in your world, deviants?

The Brain Can Only Absorb What the Butt Can Endure

I like pro football. It feels right. I enjoy lazy Sundays with games on in the background while I roughhouse with my son. My wife will occasionally gasp and say, “be gentle!”


Football commentators usually fall into one of two categories for me:

  1. Enjoyable
  2. Loathsome

There’s not much wiggle-room in between.


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