May 9, 2018

Your Ideas or Your Stories

NOTE: This is an edited version of what was in my May '18 newsletter. Go subscribe and you'll be the first to read these kinds of updates.

Gary Vaynerchuck is a brash entrepreneur and podcaster that appears to have a heart of gold–all at the same time. He recently said something in an episode that caught my ear, "No one's interested in your opinion. They're interested in your process." This may not be exactly what he said, but it's close enough. If I understand him correctly, this simple statement means that people are more interested in your story than your ideas. Ideas are interesting but they are not as captivating as when an idea is practiced, lived out.

I think I agree with this. Here's why: more and more these days, I have found myself explaining what I think are amazing ideas to a room full of people. A hand excitedly shoots up. I think it's going to be about my great ideas. Yet, the person says, "Can you tell us your story?" Okay. Got it. Change gears. Tell stories.

This got me thinking about something that I've been discreet about: the process of discerning whether I'm called to be a priest in the Episcopal Church. For those outside of this tradition, it is an extensive process. Cultural distinctives in this tradition that have led me to avoid this until now. I'm not anxious about it but I know it creates tons of anxiety for others. So, rather than share my opinions, I'm taking Gary's advice and I'm going to be more transparent about this process.

I meet with my committee this evening. I invite your prayers and conversation.

Wherever you are. Whomever you are. I hope what sticks with you here is a simple principle: ideas are powerful but your story is even more powerful. Share yours.

May 7, 2018

Network Effect

Fascinating read on the "network effect" here.

"We want to be in the 'in group' and be accepted by others. Sharing common beliefs is a critical part of that. If people believe in something, others are more likely to stick with it and believe in it, too. ... Most importantly, beliefs become more valuable to believers the more people believe."

My interpretation? Evangelism matters. Evangelism changes parties on both ends.

As an aside, for those that the "e-word" makes them anxious, it does not have to be coercive or commercial.

More here.

Thanks for the tip, Jacob.

May 2, 2018

My Latest Newsletter Went Out

My newsletter just went out again. You missed it this time. But you can subscribe here and get it next time it goes out. It's where I share the stuff I am working on; news about my podcast, what I'm doing at work, music I'm listening to, books I'm reading, etc. All in one place. In your inbox.

I hope you subscribe!

April 20, 2018

Becoming Disciples

Some friends of mine are putting together a video series of what it means to be a disciple. Here's my contribution:

April 18, 2018

Amorality or Morality Anew

At times we speak, in our culture–especially within our churches, about the loss of moral authority, of secularization. It is presented to those listening as if we have been on a slippery slope since the 60's. I disagree. What if what we are watching emerge is not an amoral culture but a new set of moral expectations? Does that change your perspective?