Mental Post-Its

Thoughts, Notes and General Mental Mayhem


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#IFgathering2016: Quotes and Notes

Just got back from Austin! It was a fun event, and I loved making new friends and discovering new speakers and resources. God showed up and big and small ways, as He always does. He is faithful.

It was a powerful statement to see over 2,000 women gather, get equipped and be unleashed to live God’s calling on their lives. And there were over 100 countries watching from over 2,000 live streams all around the globe! It is quite the community.

Here are my notes from a number of the speakers. And if you’d like to watch the live stream recordings, they are free until tomorrow evening at www.live.ifgathering.com. Enjoy!

 

Jo Saxton

  • Jesus is the redeemer of your life. Jesus is the one who restores your purpose.

Jennie Allen

  • When you have nothing to prove and nothing to protect, you have freedom.
  • We are like Peter. We are zealots and sinners.

Ann Voskamp

  • There is a space and place for you at the table. There is no disgrace.
  • Jesus first miracle was at a table, a gathering.

Eugene Cho

  • John 14:6, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” There are a lot of theological issues we can disagree on, but this isn’t one of them.
  • Is it possible that we’re more in love with the idea of follow Jesus than actually following Him?
  • John 13-17
    • To follow Jesus is to know that He loves you.
    • To follow Jesus means that we hear His voice.
    • To follow Jesus is to love people.
    • To follow Jesus is to usher in the Kingdom of God. (Gal 3:28)
  • Listen to the Holy Spirit first.
  • If you believe the grass is greener on the other side, maybe the Holy Spirit is telling you to water the grass you’re standing on!

Bianca Olthoff

  • In following Christ, and in times of trial, we may not understand the why, but we must know the Who.
  • John 11:1-32 (Lazarus)
    • The challenge in the midst of the chaos is to still believe.
    • When we change our posture, and fall at the feet of Jesus, we are changed.
    • If he doesn’t heal, will you still believe?

Vivian Mabuni

  • Let the Bible be your primary source of Truth.
  • Read your Bible with intention.
  • Read like the Word points you to God, not for what you can get out of it for yourself.
  • We tend to think of the fruit as the blessing, but the vine is the real blessing—our relationship with Christ.

Rebekah Lyons

  • The Bible gives you what you need to push back the darkness.
  • There is a boot camp required for the next phase of what God wants you to do.

Esther Havens

  • When time is short, pick one scripture to meditate on throughout the day. Also try an audio version to have the Bible on the go.
  • What would happen if we didn’t care about being known (famous), but only about making God known?

Margaret Feinberg

  • Color or mark up your Bible, if needed. Make it yours.
  • It takes seven years to produce the first fruits/wine at a vineyard. It takes perseverance.

Shelley Giglio

  • Luke 8:1-3, 17:11-17
    • Mary Magdalene was cured of demons, and she was also present at the death and resurrection of Jesus. He surrounded himself with all kinds of people.
  • John 19:25
    • Sometimes we don’t know what to say or do for hurting people, but we can simply be near them.
  • John 20:11-18
    • We can be saved by Jesus, but sometimes we don’t recognize Him.
    • Mary didn’t recognize Him until He called her name.
    • The next thing He said to her was, “Go.”
    • Your role in the Kingdom is at its best when you can tell people about Jesus.
    • Believe. Engage. Respond.

IJM Staffer (We were asked not to give her name.)

  • Isaiah 61 (a garment of praise from brokenness)
  • Pain turned into hope.
  • If the speaker’s life had gone perfectly, or as she wanted, she would never have been part of this work.
  • Sometimes we are more ok with letting our flesh rot than showing another person and asking them for help.
  • We’ll search for anything, even garbage, to cover up our pain. (part of her personal story)
  • Giving a garment of praise to someone else, sharing it, is life-giving.
  • We need to be a source of God’s love to those without hope.
  • Quoting Gary Haugen, “If the bad guys are ganging up, why can’t we?”

Melissa Russell

  • IJM is making slavery too hard to do good business.
  • Holding people accountable to crimes is what will change the system.

Jen Hatmaker

  • Jesus told his disciples to love well again and again. It sounds easier than it is.
  • Some people we find easy to love, and can easily leave God out of it.
  • Loving the hard people is what points others to God.
  • Jesus loved everyone with touch, presence, proximity, dignity and as a friend.
  • When we love people well, we love them as friends and equals. There is no agenda.
  • Power, fear and superiority keep us from loving others well.
  • God’s Truth will provide you with the how and why of loving well. If you get push back, you’re probably doing it right.
  • Jesus was scandalous and reckless with His love!

Angie Smith

  • I don’t want to have spent my life trying to look like other Christians instead of trying to look like Christ.
  • Story of Isaac’s almost sacrifice (Genesis 22) is the first time the word, “love” is used in the Bible. And the same word/context is used later to describe Jesus’ sacrifice.
  • 2K years later, Jesus was crucified in the same area as God provided the sacrifice for Abraham and Isaac.
  • In times of testing, have you been more focused on the thicket or the cross? We aren’t promised the ram, only the Lamb.

David Platt

  • John 17
  • Where has God placed you? Recognize your unique place.
    • God loves people not only so much that He gave us His son, but He sent you our uniquely and with authority. Don’t keep this love to yourself!
  • Realize what’s at stake for those around you.
    • It may sound hateful to say to others that Jesus is the only way out of Hell, but if you believe it, it’s hateful not to share it.
  • Remember the simple purpose God has given you: make disciples.
    • Jesus’ revolution revolved around 12 men.
    • You don’t need a blog or movement or website or to be famous: you just need to make one disciple. What if we all just made one each?
    • Love makes you do strange things!

Jennie Allen

  • We exist for the glory of God and the good of the people.
  • Jesus walked in surrender and obedience.
  • Acts 2:42
  • Its not about what happens in this room at this event. It’s about what happens when we leave.
  • People need to see a compelling reason in you for why they should know Jesus.

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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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Lent 2015

464613430It’s hard to believe, but we are about halfway through the Lenten season already. I’ve participated in Lent for a number of years now, and always feel that it’s an encouraging and challenging (in a good way) experience.

The New Year begins and we resolve to read our Bibles more, or pray more, or give more, but as we know, most resolutions are short-lived. And that is one reason I really like Lent. If I start the New Year off strong, but wane a few weeks or a month later, Lent is there to kick me in the pants and get me motivated again.

I didn’t really have a plan for what I was going to read this year. But I came across Margaret Feinberg’s 40-day plan via Twitter, and decided to give it a go. I’ve been spending a lot of time in the Old Testament, so I thought it would be a good idea to focus on Jesus’ life while looking toward Easter. (I’m actually reading it through YouVersion if you prefer to read it digitally. Plus, I really like those little check marks that it gives me. 😉 Another reason I really liked her plan was the post she wrote about her #LentChallenge, stating that she wanted us to start each day’s reading with this prayer, “As I read today, Lord, reveal that which I most need to read but least want to hear.” Wow. That’s asking to be challenged for sure!

Another thing that’s greatly influenced Lent for me this year is this article on Relevant Magazine’s website by Ken Wystma. I definitely tend to go into Lent each year with my own questions, my own agenda. Sometimes I get an answer, and sometimes I don’t. It doesn’t make the season any less valuable, but yep, I’d rather have the answers on my schedule. So this was a fantastic article for centering myself, and for my approach to prayer at any time of the year. I particularly resonated with this part, “We often start our prayers with: ‘God, what is your will for my life?’ when we should be asking, ‘God, how can I serve you with my life?’” Um, guilty as charged.

Both of these items have given me a strong foundation for Lent 2015. It’s not been particularly unique or life-changing so far, and that’s ok. I’m learning to slow down, focus and listen. Those are always valuable lessons, and I have no doubt that I’ll have to learn them again later. For now, I’ll take them and the time I’m spending with my Creator. And I’ll look to April 5, when we all get to celebrate together.

______________________________

Curious about Lent but don’t really know much about it? I read this post recently on Ken Wytsma’s blog, and thought this writer did a really good job of explaining it.

We’re halfway there, but it’s not too late for you to join! Why not make this your first Lent. If you do, I don’t think it’ll be your last.