Friday, June 22, 2012

The 5 "Be's" of Evangelsim (by Mike Bergman)

I saw this post today from Mike Bergman at SBC Voices and decided to share an abbreviated version of his post with a link for those desiring to read the whole thing. Basically, these are 5 tips for evangelism that are a little different from most evangelism pointers, here they are:

1.     Be talkative – if you are going to share, you’ve got to talk
2.     Be friendly – the Gospel is offensive, you cannot be
3.     Be authentic – be yourself and share with your personality
4.     Be different – a saved person is transformed, be different than a non-believer
5.     Be prayerful – the Holy Spirit calls, pray they receive Jesus

These are 5 good tips I hope you found worthy of thinking about as well.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Great Wall of China Travel Tips

After visiting the Great Wall of China, I decided it would be good to share some travel tops for those reading this that might be traveling there soon. While this list is not the greatest list of travel tips ever assembled, this list is made up of things I wish I would have known before I got there. Here are my tips:
1.     Wake up early and get there early – we waited until 8:30 to leave the hotel. It took about 90 minutes to travel to the Great Wall, and I feel like we wasted time unnecessarily. Had we left at 6:30 or 7:00, we would have made it back to the Forbidden City in time to make that tour in one day. 

2.     Take the gondola up – save your legs, it is the easiest way up.
3.     Head West (to the alternate ways down) once you get to the top.
4.     Wear comfortable shoes for walking, with ankle support if you need it... I wore decent shoes, but should have brought better shoes!
5.     Take drinks and snacks with you – It seemed a though we walked about 2-3 miles on rough terrain. They sell water and snacks, but if you like to save money, bring your own.
6.     Take the sled (slideway) down. This was really cool. It is a sled that you ride down. It has a handheld break, it goes as fast or as slow as you want, and is definitely a unique experience.
7.     Purchase souvenirs after you come down from the wall – vendors will hustle you on the way up, but there is no reason to waste your time on the way up (most people already know this)
8.     Bring $1 bills (US) – you can buy most everything for just a dollar. There is no need to exchange your money here, and your money will go further this way.

9.     Have fun – this is an incredible site to see, enjoy it and have fun with the experience. You will get tired, hot, and sweaty, so make sure you have fun seeing this site!

Monday, June 11, 2012

My Trip to the Great Wall: June 8, 2012

According to Chinese folklore, I became a man on June 8 as I scaled the Great Wall in China. It was a truly incredible experience to see that huge structure built by mere men over 2,000 years ago.  My friend Jess & I rode a gondola up to the get on top of it, and spent about 3 hours walking/climbing on it. There are some obvious areas where the wall has been updated, but the base seems to be in tact. There are holes where soldiers would shoot arrows, there were replica cannons, and even a watchtower you could scale. 

It spans nine provinces and its total length is 6,700 km (3,948 miles). The first portion was built on 221 BC by the Qin dynasty; the last portion built concluded in 1911 in the Qing dynasty. There have been numerous repairs throughout the years, which are ongoing. 

Throughout the duration of my time on the wall, I really only had one thought going through my head. I know men built it, but God placed a Scripture in my head, “the earth is the Lord’s and everything in it.” Psalm 24:1 tells us that whether or not man gives God the credit, they and everything they make are a gift from our Heavenly Father.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Book Review: Quitter by Jon Acuff

Quitter by Jon Acuff was a good book, easy to read, with really good insight about dealing with your day job and progressing into your dream job. For many of us, there are times where we find ourselves struggling with the job we are in for various reasons, and we dream about the job we would one day like to have (it is not a secret that I would love to senior pastor one day). 

Acuff talks about the counter-intelligent “wisdom” some people have to quit their day job to truly pursue their dream. While that may make sense, it is not very wise because we all have bills to pay, families to provide for, and responsibilities. With this, he encourages a focus on falling in like with you job – focus on the things your job does provide you with, and learn to appreciate all of those things. Refocusing one’s attention on the good, instead of what we are missing out on, was a great nugget of wisdom from this book.

He also encourages individuals to pursue their dream outside of work time, as not to rob from your current employer and to actual do something to pursue that dream one might have! The final nugget of wisdom he talked about was for those pursing a dream (job) to create a list of rules for a new job. He was talking about personal/family boundaries, but I think it is fair to apply it to creating a list of requirements a future job must have.

Overall, Quitter was a very worthwhile read. I would strongly encourage anyone facing discouragement in their day job to read it. While it is not a theological work, it does provide great wisdom and insight for people with dreams. Acuff uses humor, personal experience, and learned lesson to guide people who are where he is to do what he has done. This was a really good book.