Archive - December, 2009

130 Best Books of 2009

2009As we are wrapping up the year, I thought I would get a compilation of some of the best books that people read in 2009.  I sent out this simple tweet “What is your favorite book/author that you read in ’09? (Only 1, your replies will be a blogpost) Ready, Set, Go! RT.

The results are below.  The answers are in the respondents own words, so if they seem odd or didn’t follow the rules, blame them not me. 🙂   The responses at the top with the link are from Twitter and the ones at the bottom are from Facebook.  After looking through these responses, the title of this post could probably be 130 Best Christian Books Of 2009.  The favorites were: Crazy Love, A Million Miles In A Thousand Years and Principle of the Path.  Here’s the list:

  1. @ScottWilliams   The War Of Art by @spressfield
  2. tmamone “A Million Miles in a Thousand Years.”
  3. cheerfulchicka The Circle Series (Black, Red, White, Green) by Ted Dekker
  4. KDenise ANdy Stanley “Principle of the Path” Ridiculously awesome!
  5. NRGonzalez “The Wild Goose Chase” by @MarkBatterson
  6. leebezotte Spiritual Leadershp by Oswald Sanders. A classic!
  7. kentshaffer Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell
  8. mikewhenderson Derailed.
  9. CyndiAKADisneyq Servolution by Dinno Rizzo
  10. AudioBible Quest for the Life Tree by Laurie Green Westlake
  11. prophetesstli “Corporate Anointing” by Kelley Varner
  12. nancypurdy The Hole In Our Gospel
  13. patrickcmoore “IT” by Groeschel
  14. andylie Donald Miller, A Million Miles in a Thousand Years.
  15. AmandaSims Gifted to Lead by Nancy Beach.
  16. danalynbyers Gifted To Lead-Nancy Beach
  17. richardwestley Robert Benson, The Body Broken
  18. nataliewitcher The Indwelling Spirit by Andrew Murray
  19. mandymckeown Battlefield of the Mind by Joyce Meyer.
  20. jessicayates Captivating by John & Stasi Eldredge
  21. ericurbach “Playing For Pizza” –John Grisham.
  22. MichaelBensch The Marketing of Evil – David Kupelia
  23. JamesWhiteHair Michael Heppel – Flip it
  24. PaulDaunno Fearless by @MaxLucado. I need to read it again in 2010
  25. cwileygo The Shack… By Far
  26. mfeatherson Found: God’s Will – by John MacArthur
  27. TraLeeFitz Anathem by Neal Stephenson
  28. tquizzle Crazy Love by Francis Chan. Excellent read by the way.
  29. _natewoods “Crazy Love” Francis Chan, by far.
  30. blooji Velvet Elvis by Rob Bell @realrobbell
  31. samhepner My favorite book I read this year was “Beyond Belief”,the Josh Hamilton story. Amazing 2 c God redeem! I cudn’t put it down!
  32. rachellelucero Outrageous, Contagious, Joy by @edyoung not released in 09, but none the less it made a lasting impression!
  33. 100prayingwomen RT CRUSH IT!!!! by Gary vaynerchuk
  34. briancromer “Crazy Love” by Francis Chan
  35. DaveSandell Skirmish by Dobby Gibson
  36. franco3x When God Writes Your Love Story by Eric Ludy (or Lundy, can’t remember)
  37. eddieljones Forgotten God by Francis Chan
  38. DavidLermy My favorite book of ’09 was SECONDHAND JESUS by Glenn Packiam (@gpackiam) … I read it at a time it was most needed
  39. chadmissildine A Million Miles in 1000 Years- D.Miller. I don’t agree w everything Miller says, but its great insp. to live a better story!
  40. Cindy_Reynolds The Good and Beautiful God by James Bryan Smith
  41. joshuareich “water from a deep well” by gerald sittser, great read
  42. LaDyMoNi The Secret to True Happiness, Joyce Meyer
  43. spackett Counterfeit Gods by Tim Keller.
  44. dfoulks What is your favorite book that you read in ’09? >> “Good to Great” by Jim Collins
  45. TiffVacca “The Answer is Simple…Love Yourself, Live Your Spirit” by Sonia Choquette. Opened up a whole new world for me!
  46. BrianJRussell Outliers (but ’08 release). 09 release: million miles in 1,000 years – just love @donmilleris
  47. PastorShan Crazy Love
  48. PastorChrisj Principle of the Path by Andy Stanley
  49. StanColemanSPCC Axiom by Bill Hybels.  Incredibly practical snippets of advice for pastors and church leaders.
  50. Adamclausen When Heaven Invades Earth By Bill Johnson
  51. SCHEFFXP The Bible – God
  52. SpeakTheCulture Chasing the Dragon by Jackie Pullinger
  53. DannyBDaniels “Room of Marvels” by James Bryan Smith
  54. cjhennessey Best book I read in 2009 was “Strengthening the Soul of Your Leadership” by Ruth Barton.
  55. marklesher The Principle of the Path, @AndyStanley
  56. dale_schaeffer Real Leaders Don’t Do Powerpoint
  57. DryforkPastor New book by @MarkBatterson It challenge the way I think about my relationship w/ #Jesus. Read my review:
  58. Josh_Pennington “Spiritual Leadership” J. Oswald Sanders
  59. VivGroskop Atonement by Ian McEwan
  60. knutsoncody In a Pit with a Lion on a Snowy Day
  61. thomreagan Favorite book of ’09? Me To We: A Pastor’s Discovery of the Power of
  62. ineffableGod Crazy Love !
  63. scottgould Most life changing book I read: Getting Things Done
  64. pattigibbons Forgotten God by Francis Chan
  65. Orpheus47 “Primal” by Mark Batterson (still reading, but amazed and inspired!)
  66. edgedood The irresistable revolution-shane claiborne. life ruining book!
  67. memachel “The Mysterious Stranger Manuscripts” Mark Twain – ok, read it ruffly 30 times.. it’s still good & relevant
  68. YPClayConry Total Church by Tim Chester and Steve Timmis
  69. dawndavenport1 How cruel to limit me only to 1. I’ll go with my last favorite- The Elegance of Hedgehogs.
  70. JohnHowell The Hole in the Gospel
  71. Vetashep The Jesus Creed.
  72. MrsHyman The Bible
  73. Sknief The Chronicles of Narnia the Voyage of the Dawn Treader by CS Lewis
  74. abedis Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell
  75. edhaskin favorite book: the bible; you know the author.
  76. DavidTCopeland Book? Grown up Digital by Don Tapscott
  77. evanmcelrath favorite book. Chasing Daylight by Erwin McManus
  78. jjkehm66 love the energy. sure beats “2010’s going to be more of the same…”
  79. michaeljmetts When You Are Engulfed In – David Sedaris
  80. dshropsh Sacred Echoes – Margaret Feinberg
  81. gods_man The Noticer by @AndyAndrews
  82. dubdynomite “Angry Conversations with God” By Susan E Isaacs
  83. ubinam_rosarium anything by Andrew Greely (have read lots, can’t recall titles)
  84. desiwright Crazy Love by Francis Chan
  85. cwdillard Liberty and Tyranny, Mark Levin
  86. BarbInNebraska This is from my Australian teacher friend @heyjudeonline hunger games – Suzanne Collins
  87. SavedSister7 What is your favorite book/author that you read in ’09? // Captivating by Stasi Eldredge
  88. 11Locs Emotionally Healthy Spirituality by Peter Scazzero
  89. RaquelTWG Out of the Silent Planet by C.S. Lewis.
  90. bugsact Power of praying for your adult children by stormie Omartian..I wish I had read it n jan/09,started reading in Nov changed ME
  91. BarbInNebraska Left to Tell by Immaculee Ilibagiza.
  92. MoNique32002 Battlefield Of The Mind-Joyce Meyer.
  93. JonasAsberg John Bevere Extraordinary. It was truly a life changing book.
  94. angieti Destined To Reign by, Joseph Prince (true). The Shack (fiction)
  95. BoLane The Road by Cormac McCarthy. Hands down, best book I’ve read all year.
  96. freshgreenbeans I’ve read tons this year. But I enjoyed Angry Conversations With God by @susanisaacs
  97. Tamika Bryant- “The Shack”
  98. Donna Dalrymple- “Redeeming Love–Francine Rivers”
  99. Katie Strandlund- “A Million Miles in a Thousand years – Donald Miller”
  100. Yonas Atlabachew- “Blue Like Jazz – Donald Miller”
  101. Dona Clayton Pugh- “If You Want to Walk on Water, You’ve Got to Get Out of the Boat–John Ortberg”
  102. Jessica Kay Adams– “Emily Griffin”
  103. LaVonne T. V. Harmon- “God’s Harvest: The Nature of True Revival, by I.D.E Thomas.”
  104. Trina Sanchez– “Joyce Meyer”
  105. Dave Ingland- “It by Craig Groeschel”
  106. Rose Beaudry– “Crafted Prayer by Graham Cooke (or anything else by him!!)”
  107. Jody Gresham Glaze- “Nicholas Sparks”
  108. Ryan Luelf- “The Journey to the Inner Chamber by – Rocky Fleming –
  109. Scott Werner– “Proverbs “
  110. John Bizal- “Malcolm Gladwell – What the Dog Saw and Outliers”
  111. Cyndy Lavoie– “Jesus wants to save Christians, by Rob Bell”
  112. Donna Cole “I am in the midst of “Desiring God” by John Piper..with LG 180..the many topics covered have made a huge difference in my perception of God…and pleasing Him..and we’re only on Week 4!”
  113. Gaye Turner Sanders- “Same Kind of Different as Me by Denver Moore and Ron Hall.”
  114. Deanna Marks-White- “Crazy Love by Francis Chan”
  115. Tekedra Sanders- Blanding- “THE SHACK!!!”
  116. Adam Zuercher- “In a Pit With a Lion on a Snowy Day by Mark Batterson”
  117. Christy Wilkins- “the shack it was awesome”
  118. Christine Pechstein- “It” by Craig Groeschel”
  119. Benjamin Thomas Abee- “Crazy Love by Chan.”
  120. Maurice Arnall– “Prodigal God – Keller”
  121. Kevin Bailey- “Crazy Love by Francis Chan”
  122. Kelly Burleson- “The Shack.”
  123. Allison Adams- “Dee Henderson – The O’Malley Series totally helpful for those who have questions about faith, just amazing , a most read series .”
  124. Angela Eichor- “Pastor Craig’s “Going All The Way” and “Confessions of a Pastor.” if it can only be one, then confessions wins. “
  125. Chuck Brock-“Bible / God! haha couldn’t resist ok Love Revolution / Joyce Meyers “
  126. Missy Smith Lawson- “Sabbatical Journey – Henri Nouwen; Nouwen’s diary the year before his death; honest, theological, pastoral…”
  127. John M. Key- “Wild Goose – Mark Batterson”
  128. Kendra Golden- “Forgotten God by Francis Chan. Crazy Love was my favorite last year. :)”
  129. Bob Willits- “Leach deserves to go for his treatment of Burn. “
  130. Jeremy Mitchell- “John Maxwell-some leadership book he is awesome though…

Share your favorite book that you read in ’09 or your thoughts on any of the above.  RT or Facebook this and share the love!

Stop Telling People What They Want To Hear!

keepin it realThis may sound elementary; however I wish folks would “Stop Telling People What They Want To Hear!” More often than not people sugar-coat things and basically tell people what they want to hear.  This happens in marriages, relationships, educational settings, from the pulpit, work environments and countless other arenas.

We need less political correct, candy-coated politician interactions and more keepin’ it real.  Telling people what they want to hear is a loose loose proposition; one person holds back and the other person genuinely doesn’t know where they stand.   These types of interactions create “The World of The Oblivious.”

Don’t confuse keepin’ it real with being rude or crude.  Tone, style and delivery are Oh So important.  It doesn’t matter if you are the “Good Cop” or the “Bad Cop.”  What’s important is that you be “The Cop” and write the ticket.  Write the ticket, keep it real and Stop Telling People What They Want To Hear!

What do you think?

Read The Bible In A Year via iPhone

This is by far the easiest solution and application to Read The Bible In A Year via iPhone.  YouVersion has updated the app to reflect the new changes and offers many daily reading solutions.  Start the year off right!

Do you use your iPhone for your daily Bible reading? If so, What do you like best about the app? If not, Will you this year?

I Like To Doodle On Napkins…

boys at coffee shopRandom Thought: I Like To Doodle On Napkins...

Earlier this evening my boys and I had a fellas night.  My wife was running errands and making some returns to the mall, so we decided to go to my favorite little coffee shop Vintage Coffee.  My boys 6 & 10 years old had never hung out at the coffee shop before and have always wondered why it’s one of my home away from homes.

Their first coffee shop experience consisted of them splitting a Vanilla Chai Tea Latte in their own little coffee mugs, topped off with whip cream of course.  They were equipped with an  iPhone and Nintendo DSI to make sure they stayed entertained.  They loved every minute of their experience; not only did they love it, they were perfect angels.  The coffee shop owner even turned on Pirates of the Caribbean for them acknowledging how well behaved they were.  We all had a great time simply maxin’, relaxin’ and chillaxin’.  My 10yo said, “Dad, I see why you like to go to the coffee shop, it’s just peaceful… I had fun!”

I had fun too, I was able to do some thinking, writing and take some random notes.  One of my favorite random forms of note-taking outside of the yellow notepad in my iPhone is doodling.  I like to doodle random notes and thoughts on napkins.  Below are my random thoughts from earlier this evening.

Random Thought: I Like To Doodle On Napkins…  How about you?


#1 Thing Twitter Users Like To Read About

twitterverseThe beauty of Twitter is the fact that it has it’s own little world, community and what many people refer to as the Twitterverse.  The Twiiterverse is a world or sphere in which individuals who twitter exist.  It’s the totality of known or supposed objects, thoughts, people and phenomena throughout the social media community known as Twitter.  You are probably reading this and asking: What are you talking about? Me Too!

The above definitional language is to provide context and show that the people who exist within the Twitterverse are as unique as those in the real universe.  Everyone in the Twitter community uses the social media platform for different reasons and enjoy reading different types of content.  If you don’t believe me just take a few moments and peruse the various tweets rolling in by the millisecond.

As I interact in the Twitterverse I have come to realize that the #1 Thing Twitter Users Like To Read About is Twitter.  The level of Twitter sophistication doesn’t matter; beginners, businesses, to proclaimed gurus all like to read bout the happenings of Twitter.  Some of the most retweeted posts in the Twitterverse share content that pertain to, you guessed it… “Twitter.”  The content can be Tips, Trends, Fails, Possibilities, New Uses, Applications and many other topics, as long as the content is Twitter related.  This is definitely true for the community; so over the last several months I have set aside my Late Sunday/Early Monday blogposts for some sort of Twitter discussion.

Reading about Twitter is the one thing that the Twitterverse can and will always agree on.  Everything else is suspect, debatable and personal preference.

Do You Agree?  Is Twitter the #1 Thing Twitter Users Like To Read About?

The Art Of Leadership

art leadershipLeadership is a form of art.  It’s an art form that almost anyone can learn to some degree.  Just because someone learns an art doesn’t mean they will necessarily be good or effective.  Think about all of the painters, musicians, communicators, or artists of any sort; although they have learned an art very few get through the threshold of simply being an artist, to being an effective, sought after or compelling artist.  The effective artists of any genre are able do something a little different with their artistry.  That same statement is true for The Art Of Leadership... there are many leaders who never realize The Of Art Leadership.

I’m not trying to be the alliteration guy; however I’ve identified 6 thoughts that can help develop The Art Of Leadership.  Each of these concepts just happen to begin with the letter “R.”

6 Ways To Develop The Art Of Leadership:

  1. Recognize- Recognize that leadership is a gift, an art, a craft… that has to be continually developed.  Seek out and be willing to learn from effective leaders who have developed this craft we call leadership.
  2. Realize- Realize the fact that although leadership is a craft, it is not rocket science.  STOP MAKING IT SO DIFFICULT.  I repeat, unless you are a leader at NASA, your leadership role is not rocket science; chill-out and quit making things so hard on yourself and others.  BTW- If you are a leader at NASA or a rocket scientist, you should probably be asking the tough question: “Is what we do still necessary or relevant?”
  3. Remember- Remember The Golden Rule: “Do unto others as you would have others do unto you!”  Most leaders’ barley remember the bronze rule, let alone The Golden Rule.  As a leader it’s important to care about your people, to love your people, to care about their interests, care about their success… to treat them how you would want and expect someone to treat you.  Remember in order to become an effective leader you have to understand that “Relationships Matter!”
  4. Replicate- Replicate what works and don’t force things that don’t work.  Don’t try to be a replicate of another leader or simply replicate what you have read in a book, but rather replicate the effective “What Works” concept into who you are and what you do!
  5. Resurrect- Resurrect a dying team member; an effective leader has the ability to take a dying team member on the verge of being fired and help resurrect them into a story that begins with this sentence… “There was a time when so and so team member was on the verge of being fired and so and so leader believed in them… Wow, Look at how successful they are now!”
  6. Reinvent- Reinvent the way leadership is carried out!  Break the box, find a new way, figure out what works for you, don’t be scared to be different, reinvent what might has been seen as irrefutable.  Reinvent out of hunger, creativity, thinking, believing, seeking etc.; don’t reinvent for the sake of reinventing!  “Don’t reinvent the wheel” applies to those who reinvent for the sake of reinventing!

What do you think?  Share your thoughts on any of these thoughts or how you have seen them carried out.

5 Twitter Predictions for 2010

predictionsThere are many predictions meandering around the Twittersphere about how different Twitter will look in 2010.  Although there are many hypothesis about how Twitter will evolve, it’s somewhat unpredictable.   Looking back a year ago, who would have thought that all of the things that happened via Twitter would have happened.  Everything from: Twitter being Oprahtized, Ashton Kutcher being the first to 1 million followers, Reporting the Hudson Plane Crash, Michael Jackson’s Death being released on Twitter before major networks, development of tons 3rd party Twitter Apps, green-faced profile pics. supporting Iran Election, to every news outlet/media personality/sports figures/stars pimping their twitter profile…

The bottom line is that Twitter is ever evolving and 2010 is going to be a big-time year for the micro-blogging phenomenon.  Here are 5 Twitter Predictions for 2010 (In the spirit of Twitter, they are all in 140 characters or less).   These predictions are my opinion and although my last name is Williams, I am of no relation to Twitter founder Ev Williams @ev.

  1. Monetization- Twitter will be monetized by 3r. quarter 2010 thru a legitimate add space option, as well the opportunity to purchase commercial accounts.
  2. Marketing– Twitter will replace 25% of most small businesses marketing budget. Lg. corporations will have 2 use twttr & have a designated staff person
  3. Redundancy–  Posts like this 1 that outline 7 ways or 5 tips… will be a thing of the past. They’ll be redundant & people will be tired of reading them.
  4. Change Catalyst- Twitter will B a catalyst 4 chng 4 sum major political/legislative decision, uproar of a “Rodney King’ish caught on vid scenario” or similar
  5. Unknown–  Something will happen that absolutely no one would have predicted!

Let’s keep this list going… Share your Twitter Predictions for 2010.

You're A Liar!

liarNo one wants to be called a liar, but the bottom line is that many people are just that… Big Fat Liars!  Many of you reading this post are Big Fat Liars or know someone who is a Big Fat Liar.  If you believe the lies saying you can’t, you don’t have what it takes, you will never be good enough, you can’t measure up…  you are lying to yourself.  If you are lying to yourself, You’re A Liar!

Sometimes you have to put the blinders on, earplugs in and mute the distractions of others, so you can clearly hear the inner voice churning like a train saying “I think I Can, I Think I Can… I know I Can, I know I Can.”

Stop listening to the lies and start listening to God’s whispers.

Again, if you believe the lies… You’re A Liar! Stop believing the lies, and start believing the truth… You can do all things through Christ who gives you the strength, courage and ability to get er’ done.  BELIEVE!

What do you think?  Are You A Liar?  Do You Know Some Liars?

Lord Have Mercy!

have mercyHave Mercy On Me is not a phrase that you hear very often.  When many of us hear “Have Mercy On Me,” we immediately think of the Parable of The Pharisee and the Tax Collector.  You know where the Pharisee prayed to God, “Oh, God, I thank you that I am not like those other people—robbers, crooks, adulterers, or heaven forbid, like this IRS Guy, I mean Tax Collector. I fast twice a week and tithe on all my income.” Meanwhile the Tax Collector slumped in the shadows with his face in his hands, not daring to look up, said, “God, Have Mercy On Me…  I’m A Sinner.“

This story reminds me of the story of a young lady who attends my church.  About six weeks ago we had offered for people to come down for prayer at the end of service.  This young lady came down and began to share the story of “Livin’ la Vida Loca” (livin’ the crazy life).   She was excited about the fact that she was once that crazy troubled teenager and now she gets to work with troubled youth as a Detention Officer.

As we talked about Juvenile Corrections, I shared the fact that I used to be the Warden of a local Juvenile Correctional Facility.  One thing led to anther and I realized that her younger brother used to be one of my kids in the facility.  I quickly remembered that I had seen on the news several years back that her younger brother was murdered.  She shared the story of her 19-year-old brother being murdered execution style in 2005.  Recalling a knock on the door around midnight one summer evening in 2006, that knock led to her 16-year-old brother going to answer the door.   The next thing she remembers is hearing gunshots.  One Year after her 19-year-old brother was killed; her 16-year-old brother was gunned down by a group of guys that were coming to kill her.

For years and years she walked around with the guilt that she was responsible for her brothers death.  “I felt like I was brainwashed, I was brainwashed into thinking that I was supposed to live that crazy life forever.”  It wasn’t until she quit saying “poor me” and truly humbled herself before the Lord, that things began to change.  “I remember getting on my knees, with my face in my hands and tears running down my face.”  Understanding that she wasn’t worthy, she prayed this prayer “God, I know I’m jacked up and should have probably died instead of my brother.   God Make Me Different; Change Me for Real, Lord Have Mercy On Me… I’m A Sinner!

We all need to pray less like the Pharisee and more like the humble Tax Collector and this young lady (modern day tax collector).   God I don’t just ask for your forgiveness, God Have Mercy On Me…  I’m A Sinner!

I’ll close with these words from Jesus talking about the Tax Collector in Luke 18:14  “I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.

Sometimes you gotta get down, so that God can lift you up!  Lord Have Mercy!

What do you think?

The Importance of Attitude

attitudeI am a firm believer in the saying from the movie Remember The Titans dealing with attitude… the quote was “Attitude reflects leadership captain.”  As a leader I have always realized that my attitude affects everything that happens around me.  I have to make a daily choice to ensure that my attitude is not only positive, but consistent.  If my attitude is positive on a daily basis, I give my team the opportunity to have a better day; therefore creating a culture of productivity.  This same concept can be applied to sports teams, families, marriages etc.

Attitude is one thing that I have total control over… My attitude controls my altitude, if I have a poor attitude, I bring myself and others down, prohibiting me from flying!  As I was reflecting on The Importance Of Attitude, I was reminded of an amazing piece written by the very wise Chuck Swindol entitled “Attitude.”   You can read it for yourself below:


The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life.

Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness, or skill. It will make or break a company … a church … a home.

The remarkable thing is we have a choice every day regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past. We cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable.

The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude … I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me, and 90% how I react to it. And so it is with you … we are in charge of our Attitudes.

What do you think about The Importance of Attitude?

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