Mental Post-Its

Thoughts, Notes and General Mental Mayhem


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Catalyst Labs Notes & Quotes

catalyst-labs-tag-and-bookOnce again, I attended the annual Catalyst Conference two weeks ago here in Atlanta. My favorite day of the conference is Labs. It’s the day where you get to choose who you want to hear, and tailor the topics more to your interest. I was able to sit in on some great ones this year! Check it out…

Reggie Joiner, founder of Orange

  • When you establish a habit of showing up for others, it may change you more than it does them.
  • You may need to change the way you think about influence. It’s not necessarily success, power, authority, etc.
  • Influence has to be earned.
    • You have to keep showing up.
    • Don’t pass judgement. Press pause.
    • Empathy amplifies the truth. It doesn’t change it.
    • Pause to imagine or pause to interact.
  • When you open the door to Jesus, you ope the door to wherever He takes you.

IF:Gathering Lab 1 (Jo Saxon, Vivian Mabuni, Jennie Allen, Tasha Morrison)

  • Jesus sets our example for racial reconciliation.
  • People of other colors are not our tokens. They need to become friends.
  • John 17, we must be a credible witness – Tasha
  • Creating new laws and amendments are not the same thing as dismantling the system. – Tasha
  • It’s ok for you to listen to someone else’s pain, and not know what to say. But please listen. – Jo
  • It’s ok for you to hear someone else’s pain and not know what to say. But we need to listen. – Jo
  • The Church has been the taillights when it comes to racial reconciliation, when it should be the headlights. Aren’t we the ones who have HOPE through Jesus? – Tasha
  • If you are someone with a platform, maybe you should use it to pass the mic to someone else with more knowledge on this issue. I have a black son, but I do not know what it is to be black. – Jennie Allen
  • Always start with prayer. – Tasha
  • Get to know People of Color as people first. Change happens when we find commonality and develop real relationships. – Tasha
  • Diversify your life in small ways first. – Tasha
  • Reconciliation will cost you. It could be pride or comfort, or even your politics. It’s hard work. – Tasha
  • I can support the police while speaking up for justice. – Tasha
  • Get off social media, turn off the TV, and get some real-life People of Color friends! Don’t try to understand our culture from a media perspective. It’s often wrong. – Tasha

IF:Gathering Lab 2 (Jenni Allen, Lindsay Nobles, Tasha Morrison, Rebekah Lyons, Esther Havens, Liz Curtis Higgs)

  • Romans 12:4-6 Message, Christ’s body and its many parts
  • In each of our life stages, we feel at some point that we are drowning.
  • Guilt and shame are entirely different. Shame is not of God. Guilt needs to get our attention. And guilt is the only time a good, Christian girl can say, “Go to hell!” – Liz 😉
  • Many times we are so overwhelmed in our world, we stay confined there. When in fact, we should get perspective and distraction from other people’s world. We forget that we are all living someone else’s dream. Be grateful for where you are, and run with it. – Esther
  • Look up “Simply Christian” by NT Wright (permanence, proximity and presence)
  • We all need 3:00 a.m. friends. Be the one to lead with vulnerability. – Rebekah
  • Be brave in saying what you need.
  • Your vulnerability is one of the greatest gift you have to give. – Rebekah

IF:Gathering Lab 3 (Lindsay Nobles, Esther Havens, Tasha Morrison, Vivian Mabuni, Jennie Allen, Jo Saxon, Liz Curtis Higgs and Rebekah Lyons)

  • Don’t put the pressure on others to come to you. Go to them. If you are white, put yourself in a place locally where you are in the minority. Sit in it for a while. – Tasha
  • Joshua had to be told to be ‘strong and courageous.’ We all feel inadequate in the beginning of big dreams. – Jennie
  • We don’t have to be afraid of what God tells us to do because He has bigger and better plans ahead anyway. We just have to start down the path. – Liz
  • It’s better to proactively get counseling for a year than to wait and need it for 10. – Jo
  • Your platform is not a place to do your therapy. Go first as a good example, but do it in a good and responsible way. – Liz
  • What are the visuals that people see in your church? For example, are all your missions pictures of white people saving the poor, black people? What does this communicate to your children? – Jo
  • If you have a multi-ethnic or diverse church, it doesn’t mean that you’ve arrived. The issue of racial reconciliation isn’t a box to be checked. It’s an ongoing conversation. – Tasha
  • Your church needs to be a safe place for kids of all ethnicities. If it’s not, the children of color will take impressions, feelings, memories, comments and even micro aggressions into adulthood. I know I have, and so have my friends. The Church should be a place where all feel welcome and wanted. That is what the gospel is all about. – Tasha
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My 2016 Conference Schedule

Ok, it’s April and I’m a late in getting this up, but wanted to share the conferences and major events I’ll be at throughout this year.

I love conferences! I always say that I could never go back to school, but I could always go to another conference.

In fact, I love learning so much that I usually plan my year around the conferences I’ll be attending. Even when I had a job with regular vacation days and limited time off, I’d fill those times with learning opportunities.

Let me know if you’re at any of these as well!

Possibly:

Are there any others I should put on my list?


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Catalyst: Favorite Notes and Quotes

CatalystAndy Stanley, Senior Pastor of North Point Ministries

  • Theology is what you believe. Ministry is what you do as a result of what you believe.
    • Ministry should change all the time, but not theology.
    • If you have bad theology, it will narrow what you minister to.
    • Jesus had perfect theology, and yet there is no one He wouldn’t minister to.
  • Churches who get this, and Christians will always be attractive to people.
  • To awaken the wonder of the world to the wonder of the church, we should take our cues from: Something Jesus said, something said about Jesus, something Jesus said without saying it, and something Jesus didn’t say.
  • Something said about Jesus: He embodied grace and truth. (John 1:14, 17)
    • Jesus never dumbed down the truth and never turned down the grace.
    • The grace/truth tension requires that we present the ideal while embracing what’s real.
  • Something Jesus said without saying it: Distinguish theology from ministry. (Matthew 9: 9-13)
    • Distinguishing between theology and ministry liberates ministry without compromising theology.
    • When churches fail to distinguish between theology and ministry, ministry becomes rigid and idealistic.
  • Something Jesus didn’t say: Never give up influence unnecessarily. (Luke 20:1-8)
    • Never make a point at the expense of making a difference.
    • Think twice before answering a question that has the potential to burn a bridge or close a door.
  • Something Jesus actually said: Love your enemies. (Matthew 5:43-45)
    • Objection: But didn’t Jesus say we should be concerned about people speaking well of us? No, of Jesus.
    • Think about the groups that would usually push back against your local church. How can you love them?
  • Conclusion:
    • Teach the ideal and embrace what’s real.
    • Teach your teams to distinguish between theology and ministry.
    • Never give up influence unnecessarily.
    • Identify your potential enemies and love them.

Dr. Brene Brown, Best-Selling Author

  • Leaders, know that you will fall a some point.
  • 3 ways to manage shame: move away, move toward and move against
  • When something hard happens to us, emotion gets the first crack at handling it and making sense of it.
    • As much as we think we are thinking beings, we are emotional beings.
  • The brain is hard-wired for survival.
    • The brain wants a story to make sense.
  • Both brains and hearts respond to stories – logically and emotionally.
    • The brain rewards us even if the truth is ambiguous. It just needs the logic of a narrative. Vulnerability and uncertainty are the enemy.
  • Getting through hard emotions well:
    • Try to recognize when they’re triggered by emotion.
      • You can’t create an innovative, loving landscape without understanding emotion.
      • You must have a high capacity for discomfort.
      • You need an understanding of your own emotional landscape, as well as the landscape of your people.
    • Good leaders are mindful and breathing.
      • Mindfullness =  paying attention, pray
      • We are better at inflicting pain than dealing with our own.
    • Rumble with the story we’re making up.
      • SFD (Shitty First Draft) – We don’t need shame about being human.
      • Consider writing immediate thoughts to help you deal. it’s telling what comes to mind first. It helps you deal.
      • In the absence of data, we make up a story, but we need to get the facts straight!
      • When you own your story, you get to write the ending. If you don’t, it owns you.
      • “The story I’m telling myself right now…” is the conversation you have with a person you have a conflict with. Let them clarify.
    • If you’re not falling, you’re not being brave enough.

Trip Lee, Award-winning Hip Hop Recording Artist and Author

  • Use music to celebrate God. (Exodus 18)
    • We are always standing on the other side of the Red Sea.
  • Use music to express pain and frustration.
    • We do not have a cold, dead Bible that doesn’t understand human experience.
    • We do not have a God that can’t handle our pain and suffering.
  • Use music to teach and encourage.
  • Use music for joy.

Margaret Feinberg, Author

  • Religious familiarity breeds unholy cynicism.
  • Isaiah 29: 13-14
  • Joy is the weapon we use to fight life’s battles. How will you respond to bad situations?
  • Rejoice when it makes no sense.
    • Rejoice in the Lord always, and again, I say rejoice.
    • Do it one square inch at a time.
    • Proclaim to the darkness that it will not win!
  • Remain suspicious that God is up to something good.
    • Joseph’s story.
    • Good things still came from Margaret’s cancer.
    • When we search for the goodness of God, we will find it.

Erwin McManus, Founder of Mosaic Church and Author

  • What makes us uniquely human? Hebrews 11
  • Faith restores our humanity.
  • We are only species that can live beneath our intention.
  • we seem to have more confidence is what we have, than what we hope for.
  • Hope only exists in the future. We are created for the future.
  • we need to move beyond enlightenment to living in the Light.
  • The question is not if you will create, but what kind of future you will create.
  • You are living in a future someone else dreamed of.
  • You can only create outside of you what is reflected inside of you.
  • The imagination is the playground of God.
  • What fear is God trying to eat away in your soul?
  • Dream. Risk. Create.

Louie Giglio, Pastor of Passion City Church and Lead Visionary of Passion Movement

  • God doesn’t call people to job descriptions. He calls them to Himself and His purpose in the world.
  • “Here am I, send me.” (main scripture reference)

John Maxwell, Leadership Expert

  • Success is about us, significance is about others.
  • To live a significant life, you must be intentional.
  • value people, believe in people and unconditionally love people.
  • You’re going to either read or write your own story. Be intentional, or something will write yours for you.
  • Move from good intentions to good actions.
  • Once you’ve listed significance, success will never satisfy.
  • Everyday:
    • Value people
      • Are we going to connect with people, or correct them?
    • Think of ways to add value to people.
      • Think on the front end, not on the back end.
      • Prepare or repair.
    • Look for ways to add value to people
      • Then evaluate your day, every day.
    • Do things that add value to people
      • You must act on your good intentions.
    • Encourage others to add value to people
      • Start a movement.

Christine Caine, Founder of The A21 Campaign, Propel and Author

  • It’s easy to ignore suffering when its nameless and faceless. (Genesis 50:20)
  • Numbers 13:1 (Sending spies to Canaan)
  • How you seem in your own eyes can also be how you look to others. (grasshoppers)
  • You can miss the miracles of God because of your perspective, even when you’re in the midst of it.
    • 10 people delayed a generation’s destiny.
    • Your perspective can shape the destiny of others.
  • God’s not obligated to finish what you start.
  • God wants to do amazing things. If you don’t want to be a part of it, get out of the way.
  • Joshua and Caleb weren’t any more gifted than the others, they just had more perspective and faith.
  • We need a world of hope and purpose, and that only comes through Christ.
  • The question is “how” we’ll take the land, not “if.”
  • Impossible is where God starts.
  • Do not limit God’s power by the size of your giant. They were holding the fruit, but focused on the giant.
  • If you are good enough, smart enough, or talented enough, you don’t need God anyway.
  • Some of you are praying for miracles, but refuse to put yourself in a situation where God will perform one.
    • We ask God for signs, wonders and miracles, but refuse to go into circumstances where we need them.
  • God’s promises are bigger than the problems.

Chris Brown, Nationally Syndicated Radio Host

  • Wonder often gets chucked out by familiarity, and distraction.
  • Gratitude is the key that unlocks wonder. We keep it with generosity.
  • As leaders, we should proactively create wonder in others.
  • “We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.” – Winston Churchill

Guy Kawasaki, Author, Chief Evangelist of Canva

  • Great innovation occurs when people decide to make meaning.
  • Make a mantra.
  • Jump the next curve.
  • Most orgs define themselves by what they currently do, it’s forward thinking we need.
  • Roll the dice.
    • Anticipate.
    • The best products are deep (multi-faceted) and intelligent and complete and empowering and elegant.
  • Don’t worry, be crappy.
    • It doesn’t have to be perfect. You’ll never finish.
  • Let 100 flowers blossom.
    • In the beginning, you can’t predict everything, including your audience.
  • Polarize people.
    • Great causes, churches, people, etc, polarize people. Not everyone’s going t like it. The worst case is that people don’t care.
  • Church, baby, churn.
    • There has to be a next version.
    • Then listen to the feedback.
  • Niche thyself (the key to marketing)
    • Be unique and add value
  • Perfect your pitch.
    • You have to sell it.
    • Customize your intro.
      • 10 slides is enough, 20 minutes, 30 point font with a black background
  • Don’t let the bozos grind you down.

Neil Blumenthal, Co-Founder and CEO of Warby Parker

  • Innovation often comes out of constraint.
  • Fail first.
  • De-risk the process in small steps.
  • Details are important.
  • Incremental progress.
  • Help others find their passion.
  • Help others identify their strengths.
  • Spur their creativity by setting expectations and constraints.
  • Innovation requires a deep examination of the problem
  • A million small steps lead to a big solution.

For my notes on Labs, click here.


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Catalyst Labs: Favorite Quotes and Notes

LabsOpening Session with Rich Wilkerson Jr., Chad Veach & Chris Durso

  • Genesis 37 (Joseph’s dream about his brothers bowing down to him)
  • God gives us a picture of the present to endure through the process and get to the future.
  • A dream that hasn’t been tested in a dream that can’t be trusted.
  • Test 1: Rejection
    • Not everyone will support the dream.
    • You don’t need anyone else to confirm what God has told you.
    • Most people share their dreams too quickly. Be a good steward of your dream, and share it at the appropriate time.
    • Your dreams are still going to come with nightmares.
    • No man can pull back what God decides to push forward.
    • Sometimes rejection can be part of your direction.
    • Joseph didn’t have a bad day. He had a bad decade.
  • Test 2: Temptation
    • God tests, Satan tempts and people tease.
    • Everyone has been tempted.
    • There is always  the temptation to indulge.
    • Dreams have to withstand the test of time. Don’t force the dream.
    • Joseph said that no matter where he was, he would be faithful. And he flourished. He was faithful to the call.
    • There is always a temptation to quit.
  • Test 3: Retribution
    • A God dream is always about God, not you. Joseph blessed, not cursed, his brothers when they needed his help. And this is after they almost killed him and sold him.
    • How do you handle the realization of your dreams?
    • God dreams test our motivations, not just behaviors.
    • The wrong motivation will never lead to the right destination.
    • If you are too big to serve, you are too small to lead.

Jennie Allen, Esther Havens & Lindsey Nobles

  • Leadership costs something. – JA
  • Many people do not finish the hard work. – JA
  • If we are building God’s Kingdom, then all of hell is coming against us.
  • Lessons from the Book of John
  • Jesus serves us out of relationship and rest.
  • What is preventing you from having the relationship with God that you desire?
    • Ex: fear, lists/responsibilities, people, time…what is competing?
  • Our lack of rest if often tied to identity.
    • Are we our job? Our family? Our friends? No! We are children go God.
  • We often feel like, as leaders, we must have it all together, and that is simply not true.
  • Netflix isn’t true rest. Make time to actually commune with God.
  • It’s hard to see a need and not wear yourself out trying to fix that. We have to trust God to do the work. All we can do is play our part.

Jennie Allen, Amena Brown and Rebekah Lyons

  • John 4 (Woman at the well)
    • An invitation can change lives.
    • Life change usually happens eye-to-eye, person-to-person.
  • Doing the everyday work of ministry is what moves it forward, as much as or more than the big and public things. – JA
  • What keeps you from being fully present in community?
  • Maybe have a set schedule to talk to the close people you need in your life. – AB
  • Jesus made Himself an outsider for the outsiders. He even died far outside the city gates.
  • Meekness is not weakness. The meek shall inherit the earth.
  • The greatest ministries happen over tables, not on stages.

Jennie Allen, Margaret Feinberg and Shelley Giglio

  • John 2 (water into wine miracle)
  • Jesus’ first miracle was at a party!
  • We’re only as good as leaders to the extent we are followers. – SG
  • Jesus brings life and light to us. It is our calling to mirror that. – SG
  • Jesus was the life of the party. We need to lighten up. – SG
  • Joy is the weapon we use to fight life’s battles. – MF
  • Wonder comes from gazing. You have to be willing to look, and keep looking. – SG
  • Joy comes in remembering. Remember God’s faithfulness. Recount His blessings. – SG
  • The more we chase God, the harder life gets. – JA
  • Dependence on God leads to joy. – SG

 


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Catalyst Conference: Main Session Highlights

Me and my friend Daron at Catalyst

Me and my friend Daron at Catalyst

I can’t believe it’s already been two weeks since I was at Catalyst East. It’s been a whirlwind since then. But hey, I guess the countdown continues until next year!

This year’s theme was “KNOWN,” which was awesome because there was a lot of talk about identity and foundational faith issues alongside leadership, which is the conference’s main focus. Good, deep stuff.

I would say of all the main stage speakers, my favorite would be Malcolm Gladwell. And really, I can probably say that any time he speaks. If you’ve never read his books, you’re really missing out. Utterly fascinating. I definitely feel a lot smarter after reading them. And, well, I’d like to say he’s someone I’d like to sit down over coffee with, but honestly, I don’t think I could keep up with him. But I’ll listen to him all day long!

And without further adieu…

Andy Stanley, Co-Founder of North Point Ministries

  • We all have an appetite to be known, but what level of known is enough? (family? friends? fame?)
  • We all want to be known for something, and known by someone.
  • There is no amount of known to satisfy. You think it’s the next thing, but it’s not.
  • What’s applauded as exceptional becomes expected. Applause is intoxicating and addictive.
  • To survive being known, remember who it’s from, and who it’s for.
  • You have been given a stewardship of known-ness, for making Him known.

Dave Ramsey and his daughter, Rachel Cruz

  • You don’t own anything. You are a steward.
  • Money magnifies the person you already are.
  • Who you hang around with is who you become.

Cory Booker, Mayor of Newark

  • Fear makes us small. Love makes us large.
  • The world you see outside of you is a reflection of what’s inside of you.
  • You can’t have great breakthroughs without great failures.

Malcolm Gladwell, Journalist and Author

  • We do not know our own strength.
  • David wasn’t actually an underdog.
  • We underestimate the power of heart.
  • We underestimate the power of our faith.

Jason Russell, Co-Founder of Invisible Children

  • Too often we let our mistakes define us.
  • The only way to Truth and freedom is vulnerability.
  • Declare your priorities and make them so.
  • I think God’s first miracle was at a wedding as a reminder to live abundantly.

Reggie Joiner, Founder of Orange (This is the company I work for.)

  • Make what matters, matter more.
  • Sometimes we get confused on what God is supposed to do and what we’re supposed to do.
  • The Bible doesn’t say change your neighbor as yourself.
  • Love over time is believable.
  • Legacy is about others. It’s about what you leave in others.
  • Until a person is known, they can’t feel love.

Jud Wilhite, Author and Senior Pastor of Central Christian Church

  • Love the calling you have, not the one you wish you had.
  • Go and love your calling. Go and love your church.
  • God didn’t call you to fruit, He called you to faithfulness.

There were some other great speakers I didn’t get to hear as well: Angela Ahrendts, CEO of Burberry; Lecrae Moore, Hip Hop Artist; John Piper, Founder DesiringGod.org; Judah Smith, Lead Pastor of The City Church and Author; Priscilla Shirer, Founder of Going Beyond Ministries. You can follow @CatalystLeader on Twitter or search the hashtag #Catalyst to find notes from these amazing people, and dig deeper into my highlights.

And if you missed my Labs recap, have a gander here.

Hope you feel smarter, more insightful and ready to take on the world. That’s what Catalyst does for me!