Thursday, April 26, 2012

Eric Trap Giveaway!!

This just in! I have two copies of The Eric Trap to give away! 
The Eric Trap is a modern-day fable that highlights the top 5 mistakes kidmin leaders (really, any church leaders) tend to make. You can read my full review here.

If you'd like a chance to win, simply leave a comment with your best leadership tip. I'll pick two winners at random at the end of the day on May 4th. If you're a leader, you want to read this book!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

"The Eric Trap: A Leadership Fable"

By Jim Wideman, Kenny Conley, Sam Luce, with the Infuse Team

Eric Newman is having a bad week. His ministry, his family, and his pride are crumbling around him, and he's not sure what went wrong or how to stop it. But the most gripping part of his story is that it's our story. Mine and yours. If you are in leadership, at least one of Eric's predicaments has stumped you, too. 

Part story, part instructional, this book is unlike any other on leadership! You'll go from chuckling at Eric's thoughts to being convicted of the same mistakes. Wideman, Conley, Luce, and the rest of the team have interwoven Eric's story with their own experiences and tips to help all of us avoid the top 5 most common pitfalls of leadership. 

I can't recommend this book enough! It's a very easy read in a unique style that can be read in a day.  The team has included thought-provoking questions to help put action behind the ideas. And perhaps the best news, it's not just for kidmin leaders! Any church leader will benefit from the lessons contained in this book. Add this to your list and you won't be disappointed! This is a book I'll definitely be revisiting.

Rated 5/5
Highly Recommended

Monday, April 23, 2012

The Hour of My Discontent

Warning: The following is a peek into the mind of Ashley. This journey should not be taken lightly, as very few have been privileged to this craziness we call thoughts. Actually, I can only think of one.  It's a tad messy. And may not make sense to everyone. But hey, that's life.

See, I feel like I'm made for more. More what? Life, I guess. I'm not 100% sure what exactly that more is, I just know it exists. I feel like I'm supposed to do more than I'm currently doing. Not more in quantity, but in quality. My dreams are so much bigger than where I'm at. Bigger than the dreams of those around me. I'm sorry if this comes off as conceited or whatever, that's not my intent. But I feel like, with very few exceptions, when I try to talk about this with people, I just get blank stares. Or people will come on board with an issue that needs to change, and be all gung-ho, but not actually put action behind the words. Very few people seem to actually understand what I'm talking about. As Belle says, 

I want adventure in the great wide somewhere
I want it more than I can tell
And for once, it might be grand
To have someone understand
I want so much more than they've got planned

I'm not content with the usual job-marriage-kids-retire kinda life. I look at my life and think, "If I'm still in this place a year from now, I WILL go crazy".  There's nothing inherently wrong with the job-and-retirement fund plan. But it's not for me. My heart gets restless when I think that is going to be my life. And if I never get married, it's not the end of the world to me. I know for some people its the end-all-be-all and they will do whatever it takes to make it happen. Don't get me wrong, I would love to find a husband. But I'm done trying (if you can call what I've been doing "trying"). However, if I can't look back and see that my life has made a difference, that the world is a better place because I was here, then it's a waste. 

I refuse to get to that point. I refuse....actually, this song says it way better than me:
I refuse. I refuse to be average. I refuse to stay when God tells me to move. I refuse to sit in my little bubble padding my bank account, when there is an entire world out there filled with hurting, dying, lonely people. I refuse. 

I don't necessarily know what's next. I don't even know what the next baby step looks like. I just know that the first step was the decision. The decision that my life will not be the same after this point. So it's time to figure it out. I'm sure it will take some prayer, some crying, some frustration, some sacrifice.

But I'm at my breaking point. 
I'm done with life as we know it. 
Something needs to change and it never will unless I take action. 
So you can join me in this adventure. Or you can stand back and watch. 
Either way, you have to choose. 
I choose to jump off the cliff. 

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Goals: The Beginning

So, I've been following a blog for a few weeks that does something I find kinda cool. She posts goals for each month and each week, then follows up at the end of the month/week on how she did with them. Her's are also broken into segments, like do, be, learn...but I'm not gonna go there yet. So, while I don't promise to keep it up, we're gonna try this whole monthly goals thing. And since we're halfway through the month, it will be a little easier- less pressure. Here are my goals for the rest of the month:
  • Read and review one ARC in my pile
  • Buy a new, whole-food vitamin
  • Plan the whole of Missions Month for kids ministry
  • Check my FICO Score
  • Get my eating habits back under control
  • Clean "The Pile" (you don't wanna know....)
  • Decide what to study in my quiet time next
  • Get a child from Compassion's Longest Waiting list sponsored
I would love for someone else to sponsor one of those kids and tell me about it, so I could feel better, but I think I may have to make some sacrifices and sponsor one myself. I already have one Compassion Kid, but the fact that some of these kids have been waiting for almost a year for someone to love them breaks my heart. Will you love them? Or do you already sponsor a child? Tell me about them!

So there you have it! My goals for the rest of this month. Now I have to do them, or let down the whole internet. Because, obviously, I'm that popular that the entire internet cares what's happening on my little 'ole blog!
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