Shocking Math

calculator_and_money_515824A Math Lesson

I’m not a math guy, never have been. Give me history or psychology any day over algebra! However, I don’t have to be an accountant to understand that the little “x” button on the calculator has more potential to impact a number than the larger “+” button.

Humor me a minute with the following example: If you start with number “20” and you hit the “+” button and the number “3,” you will end up with “23.” However, if you start with the number “20” and you hit the “x” button and the number “3,” you will end up with what? That’s right! You will end up with “60!” Oh, the power of multiplication.

So…what’s the point? Why this review of elementary math? What does this have to do with a blog that focuses on the life available to those to love and follow Jesus?

Shockingly Normal

The short answer is, “EVERYTHING!” Multiplication is the normal way of functioning in the kingdom of God. Think about the characteristics of God that have multiplied in your life. When love takes root, it isn’t simply added to one small component of your life. Instead, it expands almost endlessly. As you come to know the love of God, you transform to be able to offer that same love in endless and sometimes shocking ways.

Question: What if Jesus intends to multiply his kingdom through you the same way? What if your transformation isn’t simply about you? What if it’s also about a handful of people in your life who will be changed because Jesus has taken root in you? And what if your task in the kingdom is more than to simply “show them Jesus” but to model for them what it means to become like him?

What then? Won’t you be amazed by the multiplication of God’s nature in them? And won’t they burn inside themselves to share this change with those in their lives? As a result, the kingdom of God is quickly multiplied beyond your ability to count.

No Longer Theory

Last week, this scenario moved from theory to reality for me while I was attending a Nexus church planting conference. Author and church planter, Ralph Moore, spoke with us over a three day period and challenged a room full of church planters to move from addition to multiplication. As he taught, he told his story that included him personally planting 3 different churches. Over the years those 3 churches directly planted over 80 more churches. And – that’s right – those 80 churches have all together planted over 2,100 churches!

Shocking math is right!

Question is…are we ready to hit the little “x” button?

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Write an Amazon Review

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Reckless Pursuit hit Amazon last week and it’s gotten some chatter…over 11,000 people saw the announcement on Facebook. Pretty exciting stuff. But we’re just getting started and you can help!

HERE’S WHAT YOU CAN DO: If you’ve read Reckless Pursuit, click on this link – WRITE AN AMAZON REVIEW! It will take you to the book page of Amazon where you can rate Reckless Pursuit and write a quick review. It will only take 2 or 3 minutes and it will help to put this story of God’s relentless love in front of people who need to hear it. Thanks for helping to get the word out!

TAKE A LOOK: If you’re new to Reckless Pursuit, you can take a look at the Amazon author page at: amazon.com/author/landoncollard.

If you have any thoughts or questions, let me know – I’d love to hear from you! You can reply back to this blog, message me on Facebook or email me directly at: landon@journeycs.org. I look forward to hearing from you.

Scary Love

Murray.Bears

My hobby and entertainment outlet of choice is the Dallas Cowboys. I know, that in itself is pretty polarizing but they’re my team and it’s the one addiction I will allow myself. On my days off, I’ll research their stats, read up on their opponents and do my best to project their future.

Last night, before the Cowboys visited the Bears – and utterly fell apart – I received a series of texts from one of my friends. Although he lives in Waco, Texas (and attends Journey), he for some reason feels an unnatural allegiance to his “home team” the Chicago Bears. He and I spent the next half hour sparing back and forth, explaining why “my” team was better and would ultimately come out on top. It was a lot of fun!

However, even as I made my case, I wasn’t convinced. I knew my arguments were hollow and I doubted that the joy of victory would be ours. The final outcome of the game, a 45-28 embarrassment, was all too predictable.

In response to yet another crippling defeat, I posted on Facebook my thoughts about why this keeps happening to the Cowboys. I explained some X’s & O’s and then made the case that the problem is deeper than any one player or even a ridiculously bad defense. The problem is deeper than that and can be summed up in one word…

INFLUENCE.

It’s the single most important word in football and is, I believe, in the top 5 most important words in life. Influence. Consider for a moment the power behind this word. This is the force that guides you, shapes your thoughts and your character. It impacts everything in our lives. Our relationships. Our professions. Our self-esteem. Our faith. What we invite to influence us directly determines who we will be, what we will do and how we will impact the world around us.

The problem with the Cowboys is a problem of poor influence. Poor influence in the draft room, possibly (although probably getting better – consider the last couple of drafts, emphasizing the offensive line – but I digress). Poor influence on the management of critical game situations…absolutely! I am convinced that if this one piece of influence was changed for the Cowboys, it would impact their win column by 3 to 4 wins a year!

In considering this, I can’t help but think about how this plays out in my life. I both celebrate and struggle with influence – especially as a dad. I realize the power I have to shape and mold my kids because of the influence I have over them and I don’t want to sleep walk through it. I want to use it intentionally and proactively. I know who I want my kids to become and I want to do everything I can to direct that. Sometimes I do a great job, sometimes I feel like I’m sleepwalking but I realize I am influencing regardless. And mostly, I am grateful for that.

The struggle comes not because of what my influence means but because of what it doesn’t mean. Think about it…with all that influence can do there is one thing it can never and will never do.

CONTROL.

I influence my kids every day but I will never be able to control them. I can not “make” them “do” anything. I can guide. Teach. Direct. Shape. Mentor. Challenge. Correct. Discipline. And on and on. But I will never be able to control them nor anyone in my sphere of influence.

And this is both freeing and troubling at the same time. It allows me to be critically important but ultimately puts the responsibility fully on their choice. As I consider the depth of such a dynamic, I am highly aware that this where our God chose to live with us.

That’s scary love!

Reblog: Don’t Mix Colors (or Words)

Is there a difference between transparency and brutal honesty? I love the simplicity at which children approach the world. Don’t always love the sting that it brings and want to coach the pursuit of love over everything but honest, transparent living is SO GOOD!

May you live free today!

Stuff Kids Write

honest.art.eval

Melanie asked her 5th grade students to “be honest” with their assessments.

This artist received an A+ in Not Mixing Words.

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Reblog: Eyes of Christ

It’s incredible the impact we can have by simply living in a way that reflects Jesus. It’s what authentic Christian community promotes and reproduces. It’s what “church” is all about! Live well today. Live with the eyes of Christ. Live in love!

Morning Story and Dilbert

He has wild hair, wears a T-shirt with holes
in it, jeans, and no shoes.  This was literally his
wardrobe for his entire four years of college.

He is brilliant.  Kind of profound and very, very bright.
He became a Christian while attending college.

Across the street from the campus is a well-dressed,
very conservative church.  They want to develop a ministry
to the students but are not sure how to go about it.

One day Tim decides to go there.  He walks in
with no shoes, jeans, his T-shirt, and wild hair.

The service has already started, and so Tim
starts down the aisle looking for a seat.

The church is completely packed and he can’t
find a seat.  By now, people are really looking
a bit uncomfortable, but no one says anything.

Tim gets closer and closer and closer to the pulpit,
and when he realizes there are…

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TQ Music

TQ

I love seeing those I love succeed! I love celebrating with them, giving them a high-five and bragging about them fearlessly. If you’ve ever been at Journey, there’s a good likelihood that you’ve heard me do this. I tend to regularly brag on my God, my three kids and our church family. It comes from this overwhelming emotion that can’t help but be shared. It’s what drives the new father to relentlessly post picture after picture on Facebook of his newborn, simply because it’s the most amazing thing he’s ever seen.

So…let me tell you about my friend Tquan. I have had the joy of calling him my friend for about a decade now. In that time, he has taught me, cared for my heart, modeled Jesus for me, and inspired me to live more authentically…more radically in pursuit of Jesus. He is truly a treasure, a man I would trust with what is most sacred to me. And on top of all of that, he is simply the coolest person I think I have ever known. He just has this thing that makes you want to be around him – to be a part of whatever it is he is doing.

What Tquan is doing and doing well is music! A few years ago, he walked away from full-time youth ministry and dove headlong into pursuing a life of leading people to the throne of God through music. God is blessing this, bringing many opportunities for him to perform, lead worship or simply play at local coffee shops. A couple of summers ago, The Passage youth ministry here at Journey invited him to lead the worship at their Disciple Now event and it was amazing!

If you haven’t ever heard Tquan, you need to! His music and ministry will touch your heart and challenge your life. Recently, he was invited to an event that could continue to open new doors for his ministry and you can help.

Click on this link http://www.tquanmoore.com/music and check it out! If you like what you find, consider joining him as he pursues furthering the reach of his ministry and the advancement of the kingdom. Here’s what you can do…

On the music page of his site, you can download Tquan’s NEW CHRISTMAS SINGLE “Let the World Rejoice” and GET %50 OFF his album “ALL I NEED”. The proceeds will go toward travel expenses for Shine, an event held by Actor’s, Models and Talent for Christ (AMTC) in Orlando in January 2013.

Check out TQ Music & Ministry. Spread the Word and celebrate with us!