Archive - October, 2007

Just Because or Because

I had one of those “Ah Ha” moments this week in our staff meeting as we were visiting and sharing what we call “God Moments.” As I was communicating a team member’s situation, I made a comment using a word combination that I found to be intriguing “Just Because or Because.”  A team member had approached me about their role, whether it was the right fit and the fact that they felt as though they were doing their role in ministry “Just Because;” instead of doing their role “Because” they are called to that specific role.   Hmmmmmm, green light!  There is some wisdom in being honest with yourself, your job, your friends, your family or your calling and recognize the things that you do “Just Because!”  Have we arrived at a place where we accept doing things “Just Because, Just Because”   Here are some “Just Because” statements to ponder:

  • I say my grace before I eat, Just Because….
  • I disrespect adults, Just Because….
  • I go to a job that I don’t like, Just Because….
  • I stay in an abusive relationship, Just Because….
  • I am voting for so and so, Just Because….
  • I don’t believe in God, Just Because….
  • I don’t feel comfortable around those people, Just Because….
  • I don’t think she can be a Pastor, Just Because….
  • I am not doing that today, Just Because….
  • I raise my voice, Just Because….
  • I don’t likes so and so, Just Because….

Okay, you get the picture!  The bottom line is that these “Just Becauses” are nothing more than a bunch of Big Fat Excuses to not be intellectually honest and begin to do things “Because!” Do you find yourself or others you know doing things “Just Because?”  Share your thoughts!

10 Ways To Increase Blog Traffic (2)

I thought I would share some ways to increase your blog traffic, these are a combination of things that I have read and things that I have done.  Here you go:

  1. Be Original– Share information that is unique, be an expert on a subject, be funny, be real and make your posts stand out.  Be consistent with your posts, if you don’t post readers will not come back.
  2. Blogroll– Add other good blogs to your blogroll, rotate your blogroll, and encourage your friends to add you to theirs. Write challenging/interesting content that encourages your readers to provide links to your blog.
  3. Guest Blog– Be a guest blogger for friends and other blogs in the blogsphere.  Make sure that your posts are challenging and hard-hitting.  Allow other bloggers to be featured guest bloggers on your site.  Sahre and link interesting blog posts to yours.
  4. Take a Stand– Make sure that some of your posts clearly take a stand on a topic or issue.  Readers will return to a site that has strong, unique and relative opinions.
  5. Submit to Search Engines– Submit your site to search engines, submit it to as many as you can, understanding that Google is the “Grand Daddy.”  There are a number of manual ways to submit your site, as well as paid services.  A couple of sites to consider are AdMe    SubmitExpress    TrafficZap   Google AdWords   BuildTraffic   There are many other sites and services to consider.
  6. Use Media– Use images, links to images, YouTube videos and graphics.
  7. Allow Comments– Allow readers to comment and respond to all comments.  Be prepared to articulately respond to adversarial comments.  Comment on blogs that you read.
  8. Add Link Tools– Consider using some or all of the following, one of the new and more popular is Blogrush, you can sign up for Blogrush by clicking the icon to the right of my blog.  Here are some free services, links, communities and tools to consider: Technorati    StubleUpon    DiggThis    Delicious   BlogExplosion   Blogs4God    BlogRush
  9. Evaluate– Ask an educated Digerati and fellow bloggers to evaluate your site and recommend necessary changes.
  10. Blog About Interesting Topics–  Technology, I-Phone, Religion, Current Issues, “Don’t Taze Me Bro,” Breaking News, Sports, Stupid Stuff, Church Trends and How To Increase Blog Traffic.
  11. Bonus: Don’t give up!  You keep writing and people will start reading!

What are some things that you have done to increase your blog traffic?  Share your thoughts! 

For those of you who don’t have a blog, how do you come across the blogs that you read?

Craig posted that they would add those that link their blog to Swerve, to the Swerve blogroll.  That will increase your traffic; read about here.

I Left My Wife!

I can’t believe it but after knowing one another for over 11 years, 2 children and a marriage before God; “I Left My Wife!  I know that you are probably saying No, What do you mean?   Are you serious?   I can’t believe it either, but while we were at the Denver airport, I left her.  As we were coming down the escalator we noticed that the train was about to leave and I didn’t want to miss it.  I decided to take charge and lead the way, in order to get us on the train.  It was my understanding that if I just made it into the doors, they wood stop and re-open; just like an elevator.  I was wrong and the door closed with my wife standing outside the train looking at me.  It reminded me of a soap opera. I received more advice in that two minute ride than I normally receive in a week; such as:

  • An elderly lady said “ladies are supposed to be first”
  • A man in a cowboy hat said you will have about 2 minutes to find some flowers
  • A wise man said “just pray that she forgives you”

I decided to take the advice of the wise-man!  This was one of those situations in which I reacted based on previous experiences…. elevator doors open.  The problem is that I didn’t have any previous experience with train doors.  BTW I found my wife at baggage claim and she was laughing/smiling and said “I was fine; I was not going to get smashed by a train door!”  Hmmmm prayer does work, thanks “Mr. Wise Man!” 

In what ways are churches, businesses, marriages, sports teams….. reacting based on previous experiences; when the reality is that the current experiences are totally different? 

Share any situations that you have found yourself in similar to this one!

Friday Drive-by (4)

I am in Denver on vacation:

  • I packed for snow and Denver had record temperatures (80 degrees)
  • Rockies fans are a little down but ready for tomorrow
  • Maybe someone on the streets will bless us with some tickets LOL
  • Downtown Denver is Cool, I like this place
  • We have eaten at some great restaurants
  • I will attend the Internet Campus tonight

For you to know and for you to do!

  • Get a copy of Craig’s book “Going All The Way”  It is a great read for couples or singles; especially those planning on getting married.  I am going to begin using it in my Prep For Marriage Classes!  
  • The post that I made this week entitled: No Sex Offenders Allowed was featured on Monday Morning insight, check it out here.
  • I was reading Gina McClain’s blog and ran across a cool blog concept called “Proof of Purchase” it has some explicit verbiage; however I think that I am going to use some version of this concept in the future.

Blogs That have recently added BigIsTheNewSmall/Scott Williams to their blogroll:  Let me know if I am missing yours and I will add you to the list!

Robin Meadows  Chilly Chilton  Aaron Havens  Think Virtue  The Greater Love Blog 

Learning to Breathe  Rachel Cobb  Well Bread  Churchsmo

Questions:

  • Who is going to win the World Series, Rockies or Red Sox?
  • Should a Senior, Campus or Lead Pastor have to be married to be in their role?  Why or Why Not!

Have a great weekend!

Laughing Inside

The other day my eight year old son Wesley and I were having our daily download after school; in which he tells me how his day was, what he did at school…..  Part of the conversation went like this “Dad this kid at school named Jacob said that this girl was on crack! What does that mean?”  grin, lol, li, ahhh $#1@&^/   

Pardon my sometimes warped sense of humor, but this had me (li) laughing inside!   I wasn’t laughing at the ingorance of the statement, but rather the innocence of the question “What does that mean?”

My question to all of my blogsphere friends is: How would you have responded to that question?  Share your funny responses, serious responses, ridiculous responses; just share your responses!   

BTW- If you want to hear some lessons learned from kids; check out Swerve.  

Why Big Is The New Small?

gorilla.JPGI was inspired to begin reading blogs after Sam Roberts from the LifeChurch.tv Directional Leadership Team encouraged campus leaders to begin reading blogs and hook up an RSS Reader.  My question at the time was “What’s an RSS Reader and What’s a Blog?”  Nevertheless, I found myself knee deep in the blogsphere scouring through tons of great blogs, as well as some pretty bad ones.  A little over three months ago, I decided that I was going to officially enter into the blogsphere and create my own blog.  When I was deciding to come up with a name for my blog, I wanted something that was easy to remember, catchy and not simply Scott’s Blog Hmmmmmmm.  I immediately flocked to Big Is The New Small; which was inspired from Seth Godin’s Small is The New Big.  Let me give you some perspective of what Big Is The New Small is all about:

  •  The Bigger and more successful an organization or ministry becomes the Smaller and more laser focused they must become. 

  • The Bigger a persons belly becomes, in order to loose weight their portions must become Smaller. 

  • The Bigger the lottery amount, the Smaller the chances of winning.

  • The Bigger a leader becomes the Smaller the number of individuals they can directly disciple (Think about it, Jesus only had 12).

  •  The Bigger the gorilla, the Smaller the stroller.

For those of you who are considering starting a blog, I definitely encourage you to do so.  Blogging provides you the opportunity to rant, inspire, encourage, laugh, teach, lead, share and learn on a daily basis; more importantly it challenges you to “Think.”  Oh and did I mention that it’s Free! 

Who inspired you to and when did you start reading blogs?  How did you come up with your blog name?  Share some cool blog names and good blogs that you have ran across!

If you want to learn more about blogs or hear questions that others are asking, check out Craig and Bobby’s series of posts entitled “Blogging Week!”

Married Without a Spouse

Last week I was visiting with a lady who is currently going through a divorce.  As we were talking, I realized that she is in a really difficult situation because she is basically “Married Without a Spouse.”  In other words; she has been separated for about a year pending the finalization of her divorce and is in an awkward limbo.  Here are a few questions that she asks herself, that makes her situation really awkward:

  • How do I encourage couples w/ a struggling marriage?
  • How do I engage in couple, family and marriage conversations?
  • What do I do the weeks that I have my kids and the weeks that I don’t?
  • Do I attend a small group for married couples or singles?
  • Do I feel guilty moving forward with divorce, even with biblical grounds?

These are just a few questions; however the list goes on and on.  There are times in our lives that we just need some closure on a particular situation; to allow God to take us to the next season.  Unfortunately, there are also those times when we have to weather the Winter Storm, as frigid as it may be; in order to reach the Spring.   

Are you “Married Without a Spouse” in other words, are there areas of your life in which you are in an awkward limbo; waiting for the next season?  How do you handle the storms?  Share your thoughts!

No Sex Offenders Allowed

Let’s talk about one of those Big Pink Elephant in the Room subjects that no one wants to talk about; yes I’m talking about Sex Offenders and the church.  I worked with an exclusive sex offender population for many years during my career in corrections.  It was during those years that I realized that Sex Offenders were one of the few populations that were treated differently; both behind the walls of a prison and on the streets of society.   Let’s be honest sex offenders are definitely not treated nice in prison and they can be treated equally as bad by their neighbors/society when they are released.     

The real question is should sex offenders be treated differently by the church and faith communities.  There is overwhelming research that sex offenders have the propensity to re-offend, which puts everyone on red alert.  That’s why Sex Offenders are all in a national database and are required to register upon their release.  There are over a half million registered sex offenders in the U.S.; Texas leads the nation with well over 51,000 registered sex offenders and Florida is a close second.  If you put a truth serum in most Christians they will tell you that they are uncomfortable around and even scared of sex offenders; especially when it comes to their children.  Let’s face it, insurance companies even have exclusionary clauses for churches that hire or allow sex offenders to volunteer; in other words no coverage. 

The church must play a critical role in helping sex offenders develop a relationship with Christ; in order for them to restore their lives, rebuild relationships and have freedom from certain thoughts/behaviors.  Hmmmmm, this same process applies to each of us and our sinful nature! 

Should Sex Offenders be allowed to be on staff, volunteer or be in a role that officially represents a church?  Is it appropriate for Sex Offenders to volunteer w/ children? Share your thoughts!

Friday Drive-by (3)

RANDOM BULLETS   

LifeChurch.tv:

  • I am looking forward to a great weekend!
  • Anne Jackson is joining the LifeChurch.tv team!
  • Bobby G. talks about the environment

Life:

  • My son’s are both in swimming lessons and “I Can’t Swim!”
  • My wife and I are going to Denver on vacation next week!
  • My hotel reservations are jacked and Denver is sold out

 The Choice is Yours:

  • Hillary Clinton or Rudy Giuliani
  • Crushed Ice or Cubed Ice
  • Hawaii or Jamaica
  • NIV or The Message
  • OU Sooners or LSU Tigers
  • Read a Book or Watch a Movie

Questions:

  • Outside of family or a spouse; is it acceptable to give some of the opposite sex a front hug, or should it only be a side hug?
  • What are you reading? I need some new books to read!

Whyway 4

question-mark.jpg 

 

  • Why don’t we pray more often?
  • Why are there 97 casinos in Oklahoma?
  • Why are angels white and demons black?
  • Why do people pay $5 for a cup of coffee?
  • Why did the chicken cross the road, seriously?
  • Why is blogging and reading blogs so addictive?
  • Why doesn’t glue stick to the inside of the bottle?
  • Why can we swear on the Bible in court, but can’t pray in school?
  • Why is it not over until the fat lady sings, and who is she anyway?
  • Why is there a church on every corner and not fruit on all the trees?

Share your own “Why” questions, or share your thoughts on any of the above.

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