Category Archives: Pastors

The Church Speaks on SEX

Okay, I bet that headline got your attention!  This blog is actually a Book Review.  The book is entitled, “REAL MARRIAGE” ‘The Truth about Sex, Friendship & Life Together by Mark and Grace Driscoll.

In preparing for this post, I read a couple of other bloggers review on this book.  Where I truly believe everyone is entitled to their own opinions concerning their likes and dislikes, it infuriates me for someone to render stark opinions about a book having not even cracked it open.

Let’s face it Pastor Mark Driscoll is known for being a loud mouth, pompous, crude, somewhat bully and an opinionated tyrant when it comes to addressing certain topics of discussion.  On the surface it appears nothing is off limits. He has earned the title of One of the 25 Most Influential Pastors some have called him the “Most Controversial preacher of the 21st Century.”

Although I don’t always agree with everything he says and I believe that he can be a loose cannon with his mouth, I do applaud him as being, at least , one of the ‘brave pastors’ who is willing to take certain subjects  dead on while other pastors promise to take them on but never really deliver.

I also believe that Driscoll is an effective teacher, evidenced by his 7000 member church (Mars  Hill Church). I must admit I was intrigued by all the fuss about his controversial book a on marriage and made a point to order it and was glad I did.

Here are a few reasons that I did like the book.

1)      Like Captain Kirk, he dared go where no other preacher would go addressing real issues frank and explicit – no coded terms in here.

2)      Driscoll shares the historical perspective of priest abstinence, sex for procreation only, birth control violations, etc. without drowning us in endless details.

3)      He addresses facts that Christians really want to know about but can’t get frank answers from the church because of fear.  Chapter 10 which is called, “Can We ______?” leaves no subject uncovered.

4)      His book does reference scripture, but does not waste the readers time filtering through scriptural rewrites with the exception of his interpretation of the Song of Solomon which he breaks down.

5)      Book size is manageable.  I like reading books that I can get through in a couple of days.

The first part of the book talks about friendship and marriage as well as a transparent view of  personal hang-ups and baggage both Mark and Grace brought into their marriage.  They offer practical suggestions how to communicate better with each other especially in the chapter called, “Friends with Benefits.”

The second part of the book deals with the subject of SEX. The chapter causing the most fireworks is chapter 10 which is called, “Can We _____?”  This addressed just about every issue from masturbation, oral sex to the use of toys, role playing and even cosmetic surgery.  I did like how they addressed each topic in this chapter addressing each topic According to God and According to Government laws by these three measurements:

1)      Is it Lawful?
2)      Is it Helpful?
3)      Is it Enslaving?

I must admit some things were a little hard to wrap your mind around, and some things I outright disagreed with, however,  I must say I am grateful that someone really decided to take this subject on in more of a direct way instead of beating around the bush using coded worded leaving their readers to guess what they are talking about.

Mark’s passion was that this book was designed to enrich marriages, get couples talking to one another again, to answer questions of what is permissible and to create greater intimacy.  He further added that if the church doesn’t address the questions because of fear, then members will attempt to get answers from unhealthy places.

What do you think about the video clip?  Have you read the book?  What sayeth you?


Akin – Open Mouth, Insert Foot

Rep. Todd Akin (R-Mo.), a candidate for the U.S. Senate will go down in the chronicles of history for opening his mouth and sticking his foot in.  Let this really be a lesson to us all, especially pastors.  Who hasn’t said things in the pulpit and in hindsight wish you had not? Come on, tell the truth and shame the devilye without sin cast the first stone.  Two things we pastors must always keep in mind:

  1. Check our facts
  2. Follow the script (your prepared script & the Holy Spirit script)

We sometimes miss the ball when we move out of the spirit into the flesh. Are we really to believe that our congregation never picks up when we blunder?  We should just thank God for Grace & Mercy.

Akin’s passion for LIFE regardless of “conception means” caused him to misspeak as he is a strong proponent and advocate for the Pro-Life stance.

Here’s where he really messed up, “If it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down.”

Here’s what we heard, “Women have the means to be able to shut down, redirect the sperm before it can get to the egg.”  What? We do? We can? That’s  the ultimate birth control.  Is it  some type of telepathic state we can put ourselves in that we can, like Star Trek’s Captain Kirk shout out, “Lower the defense shield – incoming!”?

I’m just poking fun, trying to lift a somber mood, but the real sad commentary on this is, I believe Akin really believed this to be true in cases of sexual trauma as a result of rape.

I personally believe he should stay in the race, but these days our culture is quick to crucify anyone who stands up for one’s own moral conviction.  Just ask Dan Cathy, CEO of Chick Fil-A who took a stand to defend traditional marriage being between a man and a woman.

As Christians, we are to expect persecution.  And let’s face it persecution can come disguised in many forms.  However, in the same sense, the Bible also tells us to be as why as a serpent and as innocent as a dove.

If a man already has an unloaded gun pointed at your head, it’s crazy to give him a bullet.  That’s not murder, that’s suicide.  I think my dad’s advice comes in real handy here, “Think before you speak.”

Me . . Left Behind?

I love Sci-Fi movies.  Some of my all time favorites include anything Twilight Zone, Outer Limits, Jaws & Jurassic Park I, II, III, IV, the Matrix, Alien -you get my point. Well when I found a single DVD with 10 Sci-Fi movies on it for only $4.99, I thought I have hit the “Jack Pot!”

One movie I watched really got me thinking.  It was called, “Apocalypse.”  I sat back in my comfy lounge chair with the foot rest up and awaited Bruce Willis and Billy Bob Thornton, but soon remembered that movie was called, “Armageddon.”

Although I did not know these actors; there was a similarity between both movies  in that they both dealt with an  unwelcome guest – an asteroid that threatened the existence of man.

It was an ordinary day.  People were busy doing what they do when a small asteroid hit and destroyed an entire city throwing an entire population in a panic.  The movie centered around a mother and father’s quest to find their teenage daughter who was in another state before the next ‘giant’ asteroid headed to destroy earth.

To my surprise this movie was a film about faith, guilt, courage, rejection and  acceptance.  Honestly, I don’t know how this movie was squeezed in among all the others but to my enjoyment, I was glad it was.

In the midst of coping with the aftermath of the first asteroid decent which set off additional tremors, quakes, tsunamis, tornadoes and the mysterious disappearance of people, while on their adventurous journey, the mother attempts to witness  to her husband about faith and about the rapture.

REJECTION IN SPITE OF EVIDENCE. Like many others, the father vehemently dismisses and rejects her claims and desperately searches for an intellectual and reasonable explanation for the tragic events.

There was a point in the story where some one said, “Well, if you’re a Christian why weren’t you taken up?”  A response went something similar to this ” . . .God had taken up the ‘true’ believers.”

DO I MEASURE UP BY GOD’S STANDARDS? Wow! What a statement, ‘He took up ‘true’ believers.’ It left me thinking.  By man’s judgment, I am thought to be a ‘true’ Christian, but what about ‘God’s’ judgment?  Does He? hmm…..

PERSONALLY PONDERING. I have been reflecting ever since.  How is my relationship with God and His Son Jesus? Am I doing all I can? Is my worship for real? Is God really pleased with me or at this present state – would I be taken up or would I be left behind? hmm…..

PASTORS LEFT BEHIND? This movie was also very similar to the Christian movie, “Left Behind” starring Kirk Cameron.

What sayeth you that in this movie some pastors were originally left behind?

Pastor Outraged over Song “AMEN” Threatens to Boycott!


The Rev. Jomo K. Johnson, a pastor out of Philadelphia is calling for a boycott of one of Philly’s most popular rappers, Meek Mill on his latest hit called, “Amen,” after being offended by what Johnson calls ‘blasphemous’ lyrics.
Mills thanks God for allowing him to indulge with pretty women a.k.a. ‘bitches’, free sex, money, drugs, alcohol and violence all at the same time referring to such ‘spiritual’ terms as “the Holy Ghost, church, praying to God, forgiveness, etc.

MESSAGE CLEAR. Regardless of Mill’s intention, Johnson points out that the message is clear – pray to your god and he will give you the desires of your heart: women, drugs, cars, money, boats, alcohol, etc. all the while rapping using  filthy words including the “F-word, P-word,’ etc.

It’s no wonder why Philly’s Pastor Johnson flew off his handle and wanted to ‘shut Mill down.’

SUBTLE MESSAGE. As I listened to the audio and saw the video I also heard and saw a subtle message in that Mill cares about people, that he shares his fortune and does some type of service to keep people out of jail and since he’s made it to the top, he shows that it’s important to give back.

NO RECONCILING HERE. Johnson and Mill attempted to dialog on a radio station, without success. It went south and it was clear that Mill was enraged with Pastor Johnson accusing him not only judging and singling him out, but being an opportunist in using that platform to make a name for himself.

Clearly, Mill felt justified in his music as it has opened the ‘money’ door for him to provide services to those who are less fortunate as he distributes: coats, tennis shoes, other tangibles to poor neighborhoods. He challenged Rev. Johnson, shouting repetitively “And where were you while I was doing all this?!”

MILL’S RESUME. Mill felt a need to run down his resume on how he is continually on the streets everyday with the people, helping those less fortunate, talking to the young people to help them change their ways and all of this was possible through his music.

YOU WANT SOME MONEY? Mill, during his ranting and raving also told the pastor that had he (Johnson) attempted to talk to him personally rather than on the radio, he might have agreed to come talk to his young people and may have even given his church some money.

YOU NEED JESUS! Johnson attempted (without success) to let Mill know that it was not about the money, but it was about salvation. Mills interrupted him stating that he was not listening nor did he want to hear what he had to say. Again, shouting at Johnson that while he was doing all the hands-on community service, “..where were you?!”

Why am I telling YOU this? Because it is important for US as leaders to know what the young people in church are listening to – to stay abreast to what is being fed to them every day and to know what they are attracted to.

DISPEL THE ILLUSION. In addition, we need all the help we can get raising this generation and as a body, we need to work together in dispelling the illusion that Money is the ‘fix all and is the key to true happiness.” There are a lot of people in graves today to prove that statement is false.

TWO WRONGS – RIGHT? Furthermore, I commend Mill for his outreach efforts. I believe at the core he has a good heart, but he seems convinced that the only way to make money is by way of compromising values and ethics. Two wrongs do not make a right.

I must say that the song has a great beat and potential despite its lyrics. However, the video does promote the fast and reckless lifestyle. It reminds me of the scripture: “There is a way that seems right, but in the end leads to destruction.”

It’s really too bad because Mill has a lot of talent and I do believe that if Mill could have gotten with Kirk Franklin they could have tore it up!

DISCLAIMER: This song (video too) is filled with raunchy and filthy lyrics – repeated uses of the “F-Word, reference to the woman’s anatomy and promotion of drugs for gain. Both the audio and video should be rated  “R” or even “X” just on the “F-word use alone. and both  should be labeled “Parental Discretion.”

Finding Mentors Online – 5 Reasons Download Podcasts

Just about all of the old management and leadership books I’ve read said that the key to your success is ultimately finding yourself a good mentor.  In its simplest terms, a mentor is someone who trains, advises, and shares practical experience with someone else. The mentee gains from a “knowledge transfer.”  But how many of you know mentors don’t just fall from the sky?  You can’t go through Burger King’s ‘Have it your way’ drive through and say, “I’ll have the combo meal – no pickles and a ‘mentor’ please.”

When we think in terms of mentors we think of a single person we can call, meet with to guide and advise us personally.  But the truth is who really has the time? By the time you manage all of your own stuff that you are REQUIRED to manage;  it’s unreasonable to say  with the left over time that you’re going to mentor someone. Don’t get me wrong, I am sure there are people who devote their lives to mentoring others and have successful mentor/mentee relationships I just wasn’t one of them. Thank God, however, that I did not throw myself a pity party and accept defeat, but began looking for indirect mentoring opportunities.

Here’s what I mean.  I have an extensive library on church management and leadership.  I have come to respect and really appreciate the life experience of many of the authors. They have addressed just about every area of ministry- my topic of interest.  As I stated before, a mentor is one who trains, advises, and shares …  The truth of the matter is we can be mentored through the words in a book or words on an audio and if you are lucky you can be mentored by way of a video. The bottom line is to find a format where you can receive benefits from a ‘knowledge transfer.’

Finding an ‘online’ mentor is easier than you think.  Once you identify someone you respect, many times you will find them referencing how someone else that has spoken into their lives. Some even share names of their favorite blogs and web sites as resource links on their sites.  I start here, compiling a list of their favorites.  Next, I start the visits.  Chances are if the person you started with has a website, a blog and a podcast so do your other potential mentors.  Once you identify that they have a podcast — download a way!

Why look for a mentor this way and download their podcast?  Here are 5 Reasons.

  1. It’s quick, easier than the traditional ways of finding a mentor and its convenient.
  2. You get to hear with your ears their voice and sense the author’s feelings and passion on a particular subject
  3. It’s to the point, because you download just what you want to hear or see.
  4. More exposure and engagement. Many podcasters provide blogs and or forums where you can engage in conversation too.
  5. It’s FREE.  For the most part there is no cost to download a podcast.

Mentor / Mentee Relationship
Knowledge Transfer

My ‘short’  list of  author’s who I consider to be my online mentors in the area of church leadership and management. DISCLAIMER:   I am not connected to them personally so if they were to ever mess up – they mess up.  I don’t believe in throwing the baby out with the bath water.  I benefit from the “knowledge transfer” of such individuals as: Andy Stanley, Matthew Hyatt, Rick Warren, Mark Driscoll, Frances Chan, Myles Munroe along with others.

5 Reasons to Download a Podcast

Years ago I was given a Microsoft ‘Zune’ as a Christmas gift.  This happened to be one of the best gifts I ever received.  A Zune is equivalent to an iPod or a MP3 player which is a device that plays a variety of recordings.  You can subscribe to a company’s Podcast or someone’s personal Podcast and download it onto your device.  You can download just about anything and everything that is of interest to you including, but NOT limited to:  Arts, business, education, entertainment, health, music, news, religion, technology, sports, travel, etc.  My Zune even plays videos.

I represent that segment of society that loves to read and loves to learn new things all the time.  But reading books takes time and for just as many books you purchase that are great, there are just as many not-so-great books. And it’s nothing like feeling like you have wasted time, when there is always a demand on your time.  Well, I am not always in a place where I can pull out a book so while I’m in my car, waiting in line, waiting at the doctor’s office, attending a boring meeting, etc., I pull out my Zune, plug in the earpiece and get my exposure on!

Well what is a Podcast?
I’m not going to bore you with a technical definition, just know this how would you like to be able to turn on some device and listen to or view what you want,

This is a Podcast icon.
This website offers downloads

when you want and how you want?  People who believe they have something of value to say have taken the time to record themselves either by way of just audio or record themselves by video and have put in on the Internet for others to download on their iPods, Zunes or MP3 players. No more use for bulky CDs/DVD’s or tapes in a cassette recorder.  These have been replaced with one device.  All you do is download what you want, take it where you want and listen to where ever you want.

How do I get in and get started?
My recommendation would be for you to buy the device.  Zunes and iPods are rather pricey, but you will come to love it I promise you. If budget is a real concern, start with a simple MP3 player. They are less expensive.  Of course you can go to your local Best Buys, Office Depot, etc. however, try online too or .  Hop onto to the site you like and let the downloading begin.

5 Reasons to Download a Podcast

  1. Portability.  You are not confined to having to sit in front of your computer, but can take your device on the go.
  2. Exposure. You’re exposed to experts who will speak into your life concerning things that interest you.
  3. It’s FREE.  For the most part businesses, and personal podcasters provide their content either for free or a nominal fee.
  4. Saves time.  Reading books are great. My shelves are full of them, but you must carve out reading time. Listening to books in an audio format gets the job done in less than half the time.
  5. Can multi-task.  Listen or view at your leisure – anywhere and anytime. Can listen while doing household chores, cleaning your office, washing your car, gardening, exercising, walking, etc.

What Podcasts do you listen to? Since I am very interested in management, leadership especially in the church, I love to listen to Andy Stanley’s “Your Move” podcast or Michael Hyatt’s “This is Your Life” podcast. I’m also brushing up on my Spanish so I have a ‘How to Speak Spanish’ podcast too. I also enjoy listening to Tony Evans, T.D. Jakes, Andrew Wommack.  I have about 40 podcast downloaded on my device. I’ve got a variety podcast downloaded and depending on how I feel is what I end up listening to.

Hope to see you on the download podcast bandwagon.

7 Steps to Protect You from Credit Card Fraud

This information comes from an attorney’s whose wallet was stolen.  He writes this warning to his employees. Because he was not prepared, the thieves, within the week, ordered an expensive monthly cell phone package, applied for a VISA credit card, had a credit line approved to buy a Gateway computer, received a PIN number from the DMV to change his driving record information online, just to start . . . .

Here is some FREE Legal Advice . . .

1. DO NOT SIGN BACK OF YOUR CREDIT CARDS. Instead, put ‘Photo ID Required.’

2. When you are writing checks to pay on your Credit card accounts, DO NOT put the complete account number on the ‘For’ line. Instead, just put the last four numbers.  The credit card company knows the rest of the number, and anyone who might be handling your check as it passes through all the check processing channels won’t have access to it.

3. Put your work phone # on your checks instead of your home phone. If you have a PO Box use that instead of your home address. If you do not have a PO Box, use your work address. NEVER have your SS# printed on your checks. (DUH!) You can add it if it is necessary. But if you have it printed, anyone can get it.

4. COPY THE CONTENTS of your WALLET.  Copy both sides of your license, credit card, etc. If your wallet has been stolen CANCEL your credit cards  immediately. But the key is having the toll free numbers and your card numbers handy so you know whom to call. This is NOT the time to be running around guessing where to find your information so you can make the numerous calls. Keep the copies in a safe place.

5.  File a police report immediately in the jurisdiction where your credit cards, etc., were stolen. This proves to credit providers you were diligent, and this is a first step toward an investigation (if there ever is one).

6.  Call the 3 national credit reporting organizations immediately to place a fraud alert on your name. Equifax: 1-800-525-6285, Experian 1-888-397-3742,  Trans Union : 1-800-680 7289

7. Call the Social Security fraud alert number. 1-800-269-0271   The attorney stated “I had never heard of doing that until advised by a bank that called to tell me an application for credit was made over the Internet in my name.”  The alert means any company that checks your credit knows your information was stolen, and they have to contact you by phone to authorize new credit.

BONUS: Keep a copy of your passport on you when you travel abroad. We’ve all heard horror stories about fraud that’s committed on US citizens in stealing passports, names, addresses, Social Security Numbers, credit cards, etc.

“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”

Did you find this post useful?  If so, give us a shot out and by all means share it with someone you care about. Pastors and ministry leaders please pass onto your congregation.  Identity theft and fraud is so common place today.