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Posts Tagged "process"

Worms, Compost & God

Posted by on May 21, 2015 in My Life

This summer the McClain family embarks on the adventure of composting.  I’m not a particularly ‘green’ person.  I’m not afraid to get my hands dirty, but at the same time… I’m not game for complicated living.  I like throwing things away that I no longer need without thought of its reuse.  However, my kids come home on a regular basis touting the virtues of recycling, taking care of our environment and all that other ‘green-living’ jargon.  (Do I sound jaded?)

Here’s the thing.  As easy as it is to toss plastic in the trash can I can’t argue my son’s point when he reminds me that we should care about the environment God gave us.  So, over the past few years my family has made some lifestyle changes.  We began recycling and are better at taking the initiative to separate our trash and recycle what we can.  We watch our lights and make sure we turn out lights in rooms we’re not occupying.  And over time we replace equipment in our home that will conserve water and energy.

Our next ‘green’ adventure is composting.  I found some pretty simple instructions to make a home-made composter with worms and all.  (Wha?!?)  It’s called Vermicomposting.  I won’t go into detail… you can Wikipedia it here.  Essentially it will reduce the amount of waste that ends up in the McClain family garbage can.

However, this adventure opens up opportunity for a new line of conversations with my kids.  As we learn about how composting works for our environment I can connect them to how God works in our lives.  As we learn the process of how a leftover apple core can turn into rich garden soil, I can teach them how God takes the scraps of life and turns them into rich nutrients to help us grow.  How He never wastes a thing (good or bad) when it comes to enriching us so we might produce the fruits of the Spirit.

When you see my kids on the weekends, ask them how the composting is going.  This should be an entertaining summer project.

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girls have lots of words

Posted by on Oct 25, 2013 in My Life, Parenting


There are proven statistics, apparently.  I’m sure someone reading this blog will know their source.

When my 14 year old was younger, there were days I would completely forget to drop my son off at school.  I’d be within a mile of my office and glance in the rear view mirror only to see my son sitting in the backseat… lost in thought.

He was so quiet, I forgot he was there.

Lost in my own thoughts, I would drive right past his school.

Not much has changed today. He’s a man of few words. I have to ask very targeted questions in hopes of gaining insight into what’s going on inside his teenage head.

Not so with my daughter. She has lots of words. And they must be released in a steady stream of dialogue throughout her day.

A few days ago I picked her up from swim practice. As we walked into a nearby McDonald’s to buy ice cream, I said,

“Tell me everything that happened today.”

It was like releasing the green flag in a NASCAR race. The words burst forth.

As we drove to pick up her little brother from Boy Scouts, the torrent of topics abated she grew quieter and started thinking internally. She sighed with a sense of satisfaction.

It’s such an odd dynamic between my son and daughter.

My son needs time to internally process before he can externally communicate.

My daughter needs time to externally communicate before she can internally process.

And giving her a defined time and opportunity to externally communicate to me shows her how much I value her. It’s a great reminder for me that she needs my time. Not just quality… but quantity. Where the only equation his mom’s attention and daughter’s words.

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Cranking Out the Basics

Posted by on Oct 27, 2011 in Leadership, Ministry

I’ve spent the better part of the last week updating the Children’s Ministry Handbook for fpKIDS.

The last kidmin handbook was several years old and needed to be refreshed.  Though we’ve spent a lot of time  over the past 18 months clarifying the mission/vision/values/policies & procedures/etc… up until today we did not have all of that in a single document.  Now we do.

At least we’re one step closer.  We’re in the final stages of editing this ever-evolving document.  Even as I type this post I recall a section about Volunteer Culture that I want to include.

I’m excited to have a document that provides firm direction for our volunteer team.  It’s a structural piece that has been in place within fpKIDS but needed to be dusted off and updated.  I’ve found that a document like this has to grow as your ministry grows.  Some things (like safety policies) may never change, while other things will (like evacuation procedures).

So use this post as a friendly reminder to revisit your Children’s Ministry Handbook.  Do you have something that you can put in the hands of your volunteers to guide and equip?

If you’re curious, you’re welcome to peruse my latest creation.  If it helps you… great.  I used content from other policy & procedure manuals that kidmin friends provided me.  I love that about collaboration.  Less work for me.  😉

fpKIDS Volunteer Handbook

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Multi-Site Kidmin: N Knox Campus

Posted by on Oct 17, 2011 in Leadership, Ministry, Multi-Site

The multi-site church launches are a little like childbirth.  So much time and effort goes into preparing to launch a site, researching the right equipment, configuring the space, weighing pros and cons as you negotiate changes and unpredicted shifts.

The next several months hold a ton of ups and downs as we push to launch our N Knox location of Faith Promise Church.  And after all the late nights, the frustrating bumps in the road and creative solutions…  when it’s all said and done the hands that raise and the lives changed make it all worth while.

I’ll share the process and steps we take as we prepare to launch this next site right here.  If it translates and is helpful to you… awesome.  If you see I’m about to step in a hole, would you give me a shout and let me know?  🙂

I’ve written a few other posts about Multi-Site Kidmin Systems.  You can read those here.

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Orange Week: Best Orange Speaker So Far (imho)

Posted by on Feb 8, 2011 in Leadership, Ministry, Orange

Welcome to Orange Week 2011!

The Orange Conference 2011 is a few short weeks away.  I’m looking forward to a couple days of absorbing, growing & connecting with some amazing kidmin, stumin, & fammin people.  (Did I spelll that right??)

Last year I attended Orange Conference 2010.  Day 1 set the tone for a great conference when Nancy Ortberg took the stage. Nancy is a proven team leader that knows the value of building leaders.  The first time I heard her speak was when she taught on the book Silos, Politics & Turf Wars.  I soaked up every bit of it.

Nothing changed this time around.  Ortberg did not disappoint.  Here are a few of my favorite thoughts…

The power that gets unleashed when a leader knows a team is unmatched.  What is the condition of my team?  Are their things going on personally they need help with ?  Would your team choose a team meeting over a movie?

Give your people challenges.  Conflict is fundamental to a healthy team.  One of the best crucibles for spiritual formation process.  Yet churches tend to avoid it.

In order to do conflict well you have to give people permission to do it poorly.

Environment of relationships.  There needs to be some point of relational so that challenges have a context in which to work through.

Just rewriting these notes reminds me that I should have Nancy Ortberg quotes pasted to my walls.  These are fundamental truths for building a great team.  And I want to build a great team.

I’m looking forward to the Orange Conference 2011 April 27-29.  I anticipate more equipping moments like those I had in 2010.  You’re welcome to read my notes from the 2010 Orange Conference here.  If you haven’t registered for Orange 2011, you can do that here.

Hope to see you there.  🙂

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