I wrote nearly that same headline almost 2 years ago, and I’m excited to announce again that I’ll be speaking at the 2013 Epoch Awards on October 28 in Atlanta. We’re giving away another $50,000 in grants to six nonprofit leaders–to people who are crossing the street or the world to change this world we live in. Fantastic, huh?
So, tell me, who deserves this money? Is it your friend? Missionary? Neighbor? Co-worker? Ministry leader? Pastor? Well, they can’t win if you don’t nominate them, so do it! Today! Here’s the link: http://epochawards.com/nominations/nominate/
The deadline for nominations is June 15th, so get them in now!
Last time, we got more than 430 nominations from 5 continents and 25 countries. We can beat that this go ‘round, don’t you think?
In addition to handing out the money to the winners, one of my favorite speakers of all time, Bob Goff, will be doing the keynote. You don’t want to miss his heart-felt, mind-blowing, and rather comedic, explanation of how to live.
Finally, I leave you with this 30 seconds of Epoch:
When: October 28, 2013
Where: Fox Theater, Atlanta, Georgia
Tickets: Purchase tickets for yourself and a friend, or for a table of friends here. Use code “Jon,” and you’ll save $25 off the ticket price!
Attire: The Epoch Awards is a black tie event. While I know most of you own tuxedos (and ladies, we don’t need to know how many evening gowns are tucked away in that closet), I’ll be renting one and you can, too, but don’t feel like you have to.
It’s going to be an awesome night, in an awesome location, for an awesome reason. Hope to see you in Atlanta!
I don’t need to be sprayed with cologne while I am walking in the mall. I already smell like sandalwood and a forgotten beach day.
But sometimes, I’ll get approached by mall kiosk salespeople.
They want to sell me a hair braid kit for my wife or a vacation rental or a small helicopter that will break when I make eye contact with it at home.
It’s a problem, albeit a small one.
How does my friend Wendy deal with it?
She tells the salespeople, “I’ll stop and listen to your pitch if, at the end of it, I can tell you about Jesus.”
That my friends is the very definition of win-win.
If they say “no thanks,” then you don’t get blasted with lavender body rinse.
If they say “yes,” then you get to share about Jesus.
And it’s so unexpected, that it usually starts some really interesting conversations.
Next time you are at the mall and don’t need a knock off pillow pet, do what Wendy does.
I promise your day won’t be boring.
Coffee houses: Bars for Christians
As single Christians, we are told time and time again that, in order to meet our future husband/wife, we should scour the church, because that’s really the only place to find good spousal material. But finding your Boaz or Ruth can be tricky on Sunday mornings, especially since it’s a difficult transition from a sermon about Stephen’s martyrdom to “Hey, uh, can I get your number?” Singles groups can be nice, but the sheer awkwardness of such a forced environment isn’t exactly conducive to getting a date. So where else are Christians to turn? Luckily, there is a highly caffeinated haven for singles activity: the coffee house.
Lately I’ve been thinking about a few simple things. Lately as the volume of things turned up, there’s a bit of a whisper that won’t leave me alone. Here’s what’s bouncing around my head:
If at the end of my life, the only thing I’ve accomplished is a comfortable life, my days have been wasted.
If at the end of my life, the only thing I’ve fought for is my own name, my days have been wasted.
If at the end of my life, the only thing I’ve cared about is my own care, my days have been wasted.
If at the end of my life, the only thing I’ve stood for is my own reputation, my days have been wasted.
If at the end of my life, the only thing I’ve traded are works for rewards, my days have been wasted.
May we not go to the grave quietly.
May we not make refuse of the gifts we’ve been given.
May we never chase the shiny in place of the holy, the trend instead of the truth, the immediate instead of the eternal.
Arrive empty to the grave, having given all you were given, stewarded all you were tasked with.
Give the grave only bones.
Dear college me,
You were right. This is a trick.
Older, cooler you.
P.S. Be honest. Have you ever said this? Has anyone ever said it to you?
If your kid ends up in the vehicle pictured at the bottom of this post during Sunday School, one of the following things has happened:
1. They bit somebody.
2. Somebody bit them, at which point they started crying.
3. They are crying uncontrollably, hoping to slam shut your 32-minute long window of worship.
4. They have eaten their bodyweight in goldfish crackers and have a stomach ache.
5. They sass-mouthed their Sunday School teacher and said, “Oh jeez, another story about Noah? What else ya’ got?
6. Your church doesn’t tag kids like whales and can’t therefore alert you that “child #2453″ needs to be picked up ASAP.
7. Your kid whipped some other kid with a palm branch, celebrating WWE wrestling, not Palm Sunday.
8. A volunteer remembers your kids from VBS and started crying silently in the corner of the Sunday School class in the fetal position.
Bottom line: You never want your kid in the bye-bye buggy, but it happens.
Has your kid ever been kicked out of Sunday School?
The Ultimate Church Potluck Menu
Something all Christians love to do is have a church potluck. It gives us a great opportunity to fellowship and do life together while sidehugging in our V-necks.
But do you ever feel though like we’re not always fulfilling our potluck potential? Is there a hole that two crock-pots of chili doesn’t seem to fill? That there’s got to be more to potluck life than just another spoonful of potato salad?
If so, here’s my guide to the Ultimate Church Potluck Menu.
Chips & no salsa dancing
Omelet the children come to me
For my yolk is over-easy
Mozzarella cheesus sticks
Soar on buffalo wings like eagles
Adam’s spare ribs
Blessed be your game
Like a beef in the night
Rock of saus-ages
Elijah’s fire-roasted steaks
Salmon on the mount
It is well with my sole
Trout to the Lord
Simon Pita bread
Teachers of the coles-law
Gnocchi and the door will be opened to you
Stephen’s stoned-baked pizza
Tobymac n’ cheese
Soy to the world
I will give you the quiche of the kingdom of heaven
Caesar Augustus salad
Peas on Earth
There’s no mushroom at the inn
Jonah and the kale
The gourd is my shepherd
Brussels sprouting Thomas
How great’s thou tart
Take this cupcake from me
Jars Of Creme Brulee
Passionfruit of the Christ
The Lord’s Pear
Fruit salad of the spirit
Walk on watermelon
Mango and make disciples of all nations
Love your chardonneighbor
Items that didn’t quite make the (crinkle) cut
Milky Way, the truth and the life
Land of milk and honey nut Cheerios
John The Baptist’s platter
Question: What other items would you add to the Ultimate Church Potluck Menu?
(For more great writing from Stephen, check out his blog.)
Recently, a college senior asked Joe Jonas, of Jonas Brothers fame, to a dance.
She made a video describing why he should go with her. Joe Jonas loved the video and made his own. He then said yes to her on The Today Show.
At minute 2 of her original video, she points out that she knows he has a girlfriend. She promises that they can leave enough room for the Holy Spirit. She doesn’t say those words, instead she shows the picture of how to properly dance from the Stuff Christians Like book.
So I guess what I am trying to say is, Joe Jonas, I’m teaching the youth of this country how to dance.