My Journey Into OD

Set up coffee today with the leader from our local chapter of American Society for Trainers and Developers (ASTD, I know, it’s terrible to use STD in the name of a professional society) SIG (Special Interest Group) on OD (Organizational Development). The more I talk with OD professionals, the more I have to recognize that this journey will not be easy and it will not be short.

I can’t say how much I appreciate his time today. One of the reasons I’m so eager to help those who are newer to the profession than I am is because I know what it feels like to be lost. If someone looks to me and wants a mentor or if a new co-worker wants to know how to navigate the perils of the company and my business unit, I’m eager to help. I’ve contacted a few people in the past and asked for professional mentorship – all to no avail. However informal it was, Elmo (I’m still waiting on the story behind his name) was more than willing to share his experiences with me.

It’s time to get serious about working on my master’s or ASTD certification process. Dang, I don’t want to go back to school – that’s why I graduated a semester early – I HATED COLLEGE! I just wanted to get out and move on with life. I gotta slow down again and enjoy this part of the journey.



Leonard Jones: Bless the Lord

I’m always searching YouTube for good videos from the list I gave in my last post. Here’s a sample of Leonard’s stuff:

On my youth praise team when I first started leading, I had an amazing young lady named Natalie who would lead with me. She was a dancer, I used to love when she would break out into this kind of stuff. We had some stuff we were working on that would feature her worship through dance, but for some reason we never actually followed through with that. I’ve had some great teams over the years, but there was nothing like my first team – Jenny, Nat, Brandi, and Nick (my brother). Maybe it was because we were all teenagers. There were problems that come with that – but there was such abandon on that stage that it blew me away. I’m sure we blew some notes here and there, but we were constantly working to take it to the next level. Good times…

You could lose your job for this…

I’ve heard stories recently of MySpace Pics and Facebook info causing people to lose their jobs. A simple search for my name can give you a lot of info on somebody.

I write a lot on this blog, but I’d like to think it’s not something I don’t vocalize with my superiors. I actually have just as many searches each day leading to my blog because of training issues as I do for ministry related stuff. My company name is no where on my blog – ever. There’s a reason for that! I think this is an issue that more companies are going to run into as time progresses. It will likely result in one of two things:

1.Companies regularly searching blogs and eventually adding policies around online postings.
2.Companies using blogs as a tool to address employee problems, grievances, improvements, etc.

I’d like to see #2, but that will probably take years to see addressed. Hmmmm….

This is going to be an issue.

Why I have the Coolest Wife in the Whole World…

Yesterday after an amazing service at church, we went to Calypso Cafe. I’m not too crazy about the place – evidently I don’t like Carribean seasoning, but I digress – as we were checking out of the cafe we saw a picture of a man above it read “Do you know this man” and someone had hand written “Pastor Jerry” on the sheet. Chel asked the girl behind the counter what he had done and this was the story:

“He came in and told the chick at the cash register that he had locked himself out of his house and he needed to borrow $70 for a couple of hours to get his house unlocked and he would come back that evening to pay. He said his name was Pastor Jerry and he worked at BCC (a local church that he evidently didn’t work for). He returned a couple of hours later, but not to repay it – to ask for $30 more which the new chick at the register refused to give. He left and no one’s seen him since.”

That same twinge came to our stomachs. Here’s this cafe with a bunch Rastafarians (I don’t know if they really are – but you definitely get that impression) and a man claiming to be a Pastor stole money from them. Why? There are plenty of pastors out there who’ve done enough damage to the name of Christ – why here? We said we were sorry to hear about that and we got in the car – but of course, the Holy Spirit (HS) wouldn’t leave Chel alone about it. We drove a quarter of a mile to the ATM and pulled out the cash and returned to the cafe.

Chel went in and gave her the money and said something close to this:

“The Lord told me to come repay that man’s debt to you and to let you know that those actions aren’t his character. Our God is a God of abundance – he doesn’t need to steal anything from any man.” Of course it was much more eloquent than I can write, but the girl refused and Chel told her it wasn’t an option. The girl started tearing up and came around the counter and gave Chel a hug and told her about how she had restored her faith in humanity – Chel said (man, she’s incredible) “I hope this is able to do more than restore your faith in humanity – I hope it restores your faith in God.”

My wife is the COOLEST!


Divine Apointments

You never know who you might sit by on the plane.

I was having a deep moment in the airport last night thinking about my dreams, about how they seem unfocused and like I don’t know how to take steps to begin achieving them – thus the Dreams post yesterday, and then I sat down on the plane next to Sharon – a trainer who focuses on transition and leadership development. God knew exactly what I needed to hear last night and sent her to me.

I feel like I don’t have a mentor. My first year of employment I had Kris and Cassie – and those two ladies pushed me and loved me more than I can describe. They started me on a path to what I wanted, but I’ve been making the rest of the journey by myself (Good thing Cassie taught me how important it was that God be in the middle of every business decision).

Last night, I found a woman that I could listen to for hours. She’s been a trainer for over 30 years – and she listened and spoke directly to so many of the things that I’ve been dealing with.

Training is an industry that has many focuses, and my company has not encouraged any one focus – just meeting the demands of the individual contracts – but that’s also why our turnover rate is through the roof. The two managers I’ve had who have encouraged a focus have gotten much loyalty out of me – they want to bring out the best in me and we all can benefit from it. The point is, I think I finally know where my niche in training is – Organizational Development. My struggle has always been that I don’t know how to make the OD and ministry work at the same time – and Sharon encouraged me to realize just how much they should co-exist.

So here’s what I think my dream is: to do OD in the church. So what does that look like in a practical manner – I don’t know. Churches rarely bring in consultants and businesses rarely want pastors – but I’m convinced they can co-exist. I have no idea what it will look like – but I know that I’m about to start focusing my energy on bringing more of my life into that alignment – more books, more seminars/meetings, a job that’s going to lead me further into the field, and possibly working on my master’s degree.

My time with Sharon was so important to me. There are few things as fulfilling to me as helping someone find their purpose and plan how they’re going to get there – but I’ve struggled with mine. It’s time to start praying diligently through this, making lists, and start working towards achieving those lists.

Thanks Sharon!



I’m not interested in making loans to the Federal government. The more time it’s in their hands, the more time they have to make interest off of the money I should be earning interest on! I filed my taxes tonight! Whew! Can’t wait till Huck’s president so we’ll be done with this foolishness. Do you know what the Fair Tax is? Did you know there are 67 representatives and 5 senators who have already backed the legislation for the Fair Tax? Do a little search on that…

Point is, I’ll be making some adjustments to my filing status…if I have to pay in $50 rather than getting a large sum back, I can deal with it…


My Body Hates Me

I’ve been switching back and for to EST from CST every other week since October. Throw in the normal change in Daylight Savings, a trip to Knoxville (also on EST), and you’ll know that my body is confused. I prefer having customers in Mountain time or on the West Coast, at least then you get extra sleep. I’ve got to start making phone calls by 6:30am to get in touch with the folks on the work-site or they’re out in the plant. I’ve always been a morning person, but I’m dreading Monday morning again – up by 4:30am to catch my flight out! I’ve only been up for an hour and I’m ready for a nap :)!

My body hates me!


Slow Down

I think this is the first time I’ve sat down at the computer for non-work related stuff in 2 weeks. I’m back in NJ. I made it off the plane, into the rental car, and to the client-site for a meeting in 45 mins – needless to say, I love rental cars! Don’t ever buy a rental car! Chances are, I’ve driven it and I promise that I didn’t treat it like it was mine. Work is intense – I started this project designing 4 courses, I just topped my load off with two more today to total out at 9 courses. AHHHHHHH!!!!

We made a trip to East Tennessee to help our friends, Bryan and Dana McKnight, with the first pre-launch meeting for The Summit Church. It was a great meeting with 35 people showing up! We had a great time with Bryan and Dana, and it was great to meet so many locals from Seymour! We also got a chance to take a quick drive around Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg. It was absolutely beautiful. We’ll definitely be visiting Dana and Bryan for vacation on a regular basis.


It was also great to be back in the saddle leading worship. We’re enjoying this season in our lives, but it was great to lead people into worship again. We kept it pretty simple with recognizable songs (when you’re working off of a jacked up laptop, it’s important to plan for Murphy’s attendance). We tied in hymns, especially knowing that the culture we were with comes from a more traditional background. All that was important to us was to be life-giving, no matter what song we were doing.

Open the Eyes of My Heart/Holy Holy Holy
Agnus Dei
How Great is Our God/How Great Thou Art

Hopefully, I’ll have more content and time to post later this week!


Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is

I told myself I wouldn’t go here, but it’s just that important to me. If you’re anything like me, you like the values that the republican candidates stand for, but want someone who’s not paid off by big-business, ruled by the wealthy, and who has a vision for people – if you’ve ever said any of those things, then put your money where your mouth is.

Why do Primaries Matter?
Chelsea and I always said we wished that we could pick a candidate for more than their stand on abortion and homosexual marriage – that we wanted to vote for someone who was committed to addressing our economy, our foreign policy, our tax system. This year is when I finally realized that everyone has that right – it’s called the primary. If you’re voting Republican, you’ll have the option for 3 or more candidates with like views on values issues but different views of big business, economy, health care, and foreign policy. At the end of the day, this election will come down to two candidates, just like most other elections. Many of you will vote, but you’ll wait till the November election to vote when you’re given a choice between supporting a pro-abortion, pro-“diversity”, pro-gun control, pro-big government candidate and the opposite. As Christians, it seems as though we have an obligation to vote against the “bad” candidate, no matter how we feel about the “good” candidate – that’s the purpose of primaries. You can choose who that “good candidate will be in just a couple of more days – FEBRUARY 5TH! VOTE!!!

Put Your Money Where Your Mouth IS!!!!
If you don’t want a big business candidate – then you’re going to have to send him money yourself. You can’t wait for someone else to come through and give it away. Chelsea and I have followed through during this election by contributing a couple of hundred dollars so far. If you want to help Darfur – give money, if you want to help the aids epidimic, give money! Quit running your mouth about how your government should help those people – your government doesn’t have enough money to keep itself afloat. I don’t go into debt to give gifts to family just to save face, and neither should our government. If you want to see more homeless programs, give to the Nashville Rescue Mission. If you want your church to invest in new technology – GIVE UP THE MONEY! Don’t hold on so tight to it – I promise, it’s not worth it. I am truly amazed that as Chelsea and I have taken steps to give money away to multiple causes, it has been returned to us by the Lord in amazing ways.

That’s my rant for the day! If you believe in Mike Huckabee, don’t just pray for him, start sending money his way. Super Tuesday is when dozens of states will select their delegates for the Republican Convention. Most likely, the first round of heavy politics will be over on that day – we’ll have a pretty good idea of who the Republican Candidate will be. If you think Huckabee is the guy, it won’t happen by accident, you’re going to have to email friends, give money, get informed, vote, and advertise for him. To do the advertising the campaign wants, they need $10M by Super Tuesday. Will you care, will you vote, will you give?

New Supervisor

I haven’t gotten an email like this in a very long time:

We’ve been through a bit as a project team this week and I wanted to send a note to relate that I’m confident we are going to deliver a program that our customer will be happy with.

Thanks for your hard work!!

I was really anxious about getting a new boss. I was afraid he would be a clock-watching, foul-mouthed, long-timer who just cared about his own project success. My new supervisor has led by example. He’s stepped in to be a buffer with a tough customer, he led us to better productivity with vision instead of belittling, he’s more interested in teaching and establishing long-term profits than positioning employees as pawns. He’s helping me get set up with ASTD again (American Society for Trainers and Developers) including training, certification, and networking for future work. It’s been exciting to be around someone who is so positive, but pushes me professionally for so much more!

I hope I can truly meet his expectations, and I hope he continues to invest in me. Maybe I’ll start enjoying my job again! 🙂 God’s provision is fantastic – I’d just like to enjoy what I’m doing again – and I think he’s going to help me get there.