Mental Post-Its

Thoughts, Notes, and General Mental Mayhem


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Me and 5,000 of My Closest Friends

It’s been a long couple of months. Honestly, I feel like like I’ve been in a haze. It’s just about “go time” for me with my job. The days have been long, the nights have been short, and the work has been steady, sometimes overwhelming. In my day gig, I’m the event marketing director at Orange. And most of my year, about 80% or more actually, is spent on The Orange Conference.

I can’t believe it, but we’re only 11 days away from hosting people at the Gwinnett Center in Duluth, Ga! Yep, just me and 5,000 of my closest friends gathering to learn and have a little fun. My company, Orange, will be bringing together church leaders from all over the world to rethink the traditional church model’s approach to family ministry. We are all about partnering the home and the church to work together to better influence the faith of the next generation. (Red represents the heart of the family and yellow represents the light of the church. Orange is a bridge.)

Sure, we’ve got some big names like Andy Stanley and Craig Groeschel coming, but usually the more exciting people to hobnob with are the people I haven’t heard of, and hearing stories from church leaders implementing the Orange Strategy in their context. It’s always touching to hear how our work is affecting local communities, as well as brainstorm, troubleshoot or simply listen to their stories. Some situations are the same, and many are different, but it’s cool to be on the journey with these churches as they minister to others. It makes the long work days with it.

We’re going to laugh a lot, and learn a lot. We’ll have hijinks and heartwarming moments. We’ll be more tired than we are now, but it’ll all be worth.

So if you aren’t busy April 25-27, make plans to join us. And if you’d like to come and serve as a volunteer, that’s available too. We’ll be glad to see you either way.

For more info, visit www.TheOrangeConference.com. Stay tuned for a recap!

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Different Drummer, Disney and Orange

Here is a reprint of a post I co-wrote for work about a really unique trip I recently went on.

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Recently, our friends at Different Drummer offered two of us Orange staffers a unique opportunity to spend time at Walt Disney Animation Studios with a group of amazing women in ministry from churches all across the country. These women had a variety of Orange experience, ranging from none to some to thinking Orange, which made for a lot of fun discussion. During our two-day visit, we were asked, “What is Orange?” many times. And every time we gave our answer, we would receive a thoughtful and puzzled response—”So, you don’t just work with children’s ministry?” or “I had no idea our church’s entire ministry staff could utilize Orange resources.” So, over the course of the next 36-hours, while experiencing Los Angeles and Disney Studios together, we set the record straight.

It was a wonderful whirlwind of a trip and during our brief stint as VIP’s, our little group of women still found plenty of time to chat. Our first stop was a private screening of the new Winnie the Pooh movie in its entirety and the first four minutes of The Lion King 3D, to be released in July and September, respectively. What great family movies! After the viewing, we were all able to discuss how Pooh and his friends showcase many qualities of a strong Christian family—love, trust and kindness—and do so in a cute and funny storyline. Next, we were off to the Walt Disney Animation Studios where we met with some of the directors, producers, writers and animation artists from the movie. What a unique experience to hear the background on planning, research, casting and implementation of a Disney movie. Several of them also shared their personal testimony and faith with us, and how that is lived out on the job at Disney. They have seen some very cool things happen as they pray for their coworkers.

A few of our other excursions included the opportunity to try our hand as the voiceover for Piglet, speak with an original Pooh animator who has a 50-year-plus career with Disney, tour the archive building with over 65 million sketches from all Disney films, and watch The Lion King animators at work. We even received our very own drawing to take home!

Overall, it was a fantastic behind-the-scenes look at one of the most recognizable companies in the world. We were delighted with the chance to educate those new to Orange, as well as encourage those currently incorporating the strategy. Additionally, it was inspiring for us to hear how these women were serving God and their communities. We definitely made some great friends! And hopefully, they are also now able to answer the question, “What is Orange?”

A big thanks once again to Different Drummer and Disney! And be sure to see Winnie the Pooh at your local theater July 15—it’s a movie the whole family will enjoy!