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You’re Exceptional … That’s Your Problem!

The leaders I’m investing in are all exceptional!  Exceptionally gifted Exceptionally resourced Exceptionally appreciated In addition to these wonderful assets from God and His people, they also enjoy exceptional freedoms. Freedom to set their own schedules Freedom to work independently Freedom to hide from accountability Every gift and every freedom can be abused. No one is exempt from the temptations of entitlement. Those who are exceptionally blessed can easily be deceived. Remember King Solomon. He was an exceptionally gifted man. After he humbly asked for the wisdom to lead well, the Lord stunned him with far more, saying: “I will do what […]

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The Law Of The Bigger Yes!

Last night my plans for the next day suddenly changed with a  simple text.  Cam asked if I could meet him at the Denver airport for breakfast before he left on a family vacation in Colorado. My one word response was an emphatic one, “Absolutely!” I immediately set aside previous plans because I suddenly had a bigger yes burning inside me! Some days are like that,  when we experience a life-enriching opportunity that changes everything for the better. Few people in my life lift my spirits more than my 45-year friend, Cam Huxford. As Paul once said of his young protege, Timothy, “I have no […]

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One Powerful Word

It’s been said that the man who doesn’t read is no better off than the one who can’t. Some books may be savored over several weeks, others over several hours. Here’s one I first finished in only 49 minutes! One Word That Will Change Your Life. The authors contend that goal setting rarely works; however, simply focusing on one word does. They got my attention and led me in a process to identify God’s one word for me to focus on during the entire year. It wasn’t hard; in fact, I’ve been following that pattern for the last seven year. […]

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Home For Christmas!

“Home for Christmas” is one of the warmest of phrases. This year we are all experiencing a Christmas unique from any other before, a “COVID Christmas.” For some it’s merely an inconvenience, for others it’s a painfully lonely one, even a grieving one. For everyone it’s far from an ideal one. Ours is definitely not ideal, as once again this year our family is scattered far and wide. Our youngest daughter and her tribe will be celebrating Christmas far from our Colorado home. They’re snug and warm in a 37 foot RV somewhere in the Florida Everglades.  Our son will also be […]

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Surprise!

The only surprises I like are good ones … and the best one of all is yet to come!  We’re smack in the middle of Advent, the season of heavenly surprise. Advent means “coming” and therefore we celebrate the first coming of Christ. However, it is also when we anticipate the second Advent, when Jesus comes again! Advent is at the root of adventure. When Jesus first arrived He entered a world at war, a world torn apart with conflict socially, politically and militarily. Things were in a mess, and as the Messiah He entered right into the middle of that mess. He’s […]

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Ingenious!

A good buddy is preaching a series right now entitled: “The Genius of Gratitude!” When Bryan Myers shared his theme with me we each began to celebrate some of what we’ve learned about this life giving truth. But then after a long call he texted me with a further request for help. He wanted me to email an illustration I had shared earlier. I was in the middle of other things and honestly wasn’t very “grateful” for the interruption! Ironic isn’t it? Here we were, gripped with the theme of gratitude, and then a few hours later I was bothered by his […]

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Are You Contagious?

Are you contagious? I know several pastors who are contagious with COVID 19, but dozens are contagious with their enthusiasm for Covenant Groups in 2021! Last week Shan Wood just launched a new group in Cape Cod, it was remarkable…exceeding all expectations. So much so that Shan is hoping to launch another new group early next year. He’s not alone. Soul care isn’t for sissies! Some of the strongest guys I know are admitting they don’t know where they would be without their group. When a recent retreat had to be postponed it took one tough guy a week to recover from […]

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Refreshing 4 D’s

“Hey Alan, do you have a simple synopsis of the 4 D’s you could share with me? I have my notes, but I anticipate you have something to summarize the 4 D’s better than my scribbles.” A good friend recently asked me this question about the template I have been using to catalyze deeper conversations for years, so look over my shoulder as I respond to Rick, a retired Director of HR and current Bible class teacher. The 4 D’s I’ve used for years are simply: Delight, Drain, Discovery, Determination. I use these as a conversational template for all of our group gatherings, and […]

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Cheer Up!

“All the days of the oppressed are wretched, but the cheerful heart has a continual feast . . . . A cheerful look brings joy to the heart, and good news gives health to the bones.” (Proverbs 15:15 & 30) Could it be that we can all choose cheerfulness? By personality type some people seem predisposed to see more of the dreariness of life while others seem predisposed to see more of the delightfulness.  However, I believe that ultimately it is our choice that determines our degree of cheerfulness. We don’t have to live in perpetual dismay; in fact, the Lord […]

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Hope to Survive!

It happened again, another of my friends was just hammered by a hurricane. Scott Clevenger leads a church in Pensacola, Florida where everyone was surprised by a ferocious storm dumping several feet of water in just a few hours, knocking out power for several hundred thousand and leaving some just hoping to survive! My buddy Cam Huxford says, “In Savannah we’ve learned that you can prepare for a storm, but you can’t prepare for a hurricane – you can only hope to survive!” I’m no expert when it comes to literal hurricanes, but I do know something about emotional ones. I’ve experienced my […]

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