.




Change the channel: Blog | MySpace | YouTube | My 360's Blog | Facebook | YouthMinistry.com | SimplyYouthMinistry.com

 



I Love Staff Meetings

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!



Great staff meeting today, took some funny shots to share. Ryanne and Josh are the best.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:21 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Austin Carty on eBay

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

After yesterday's show, we called Austin and asked about auctioning him off on eBay. He agreed, so we've set up a pretty funny auction to raise money for Compassion International. He's a great guy, good times. Check it out!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:14 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Austin Featured for His Faith

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

A friend found this article today in the News-Record and forwarded it on. Here's a clip about Austin (who is on this week's podcast as well as the PDYM Student Conference in July):
He says his decisions on the show were dictated by his Christian faith. There were the prayers during times of trial, such as when his tribe couldn't start a fire to boil water to drink.

Or the time he tried to make his own hidden idol to trick tribemates into believing he had the show's, but decided in the end not to use it.

"The system of 'Survivor' is contrary to how I want to live my life," said Carty from a seat at Barnes & Noble, one of his favorite hangouts.

Carty's display of faith on the show has garnered interest among Christian fans. His MySpace account has received hundreds of e-mails from those who say his dedication to the Lord was encouraging on such an aggressive, ego-ridden show.

But he admits the show's following isn't as big as it use to be and certainly can't compete with other reality television shows, such as Fox's "American Idol."

Still, he says he plans to use his brief notoriety to further his own career goals.

"It opens up a lot of doors," Carty said. "I just have to be careful as to who I follow and who I trust."

His display of integrity on the show has helped him get into public speaking.

His agents are booking him to appear at events such as the Purpose Driven Youth Conference this July in California, along with engagements at other churches and youth conferences.
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:11 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Projects I'm Working On

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Here's a few of the projects I've been working on:

New site skin - we're reskinning the site giving SYM a new color scheme. We're moving away from such . Here's a screenshot of where we're going. We'll launch a whole new world then in November that will rock the world, too.

New products - this past week I added several new clothing products and about a half dozen CDs, too. We also relaunched When People Meet Jesus with a new look and some value-added includes.

Product Review - later this week we're adding a "review this product" footer to all product detail pages. It'll be automated, and look pretty slick.

Live Help - also in the footer in the product detail pages we're adding a live person functionality. Should be cool, you can just click on it and it'll open a chat window with Debbie or Nadim. Great tool to help answer questions and make suggestions for resources that might work in a specific setting.

SJH Video Podcast -This week Kurt's monthly training jumps into iTunes with a debut at #31 in Religion and Spirituality. Pretty great, isn't it?

Lots more coming, but some fun highlights from when I actually do work.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:48 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Don't Mess With Batman

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

BBC has an article about political correctness and comic books. Obviously some diversity is welcome, but the lesbian Bat Woman is over the top. Argh!

The new-look Batwoman is just one of a wave of ethnically and sexually diverse characters entering the DC Comics universe. Others include Mexican teenager Blue Beetle - who replaces the character's previous white incarnation - and the Great Ten, a government-sponsored team of Chinese superheroes.


Regular characters Firestorm and The Atom, meanwhile, have been reinvented as black and Asian heroes respectively. The characters are part of a wider effort to broaden the make-up of comic-book creations in line with society as a whole. Batwoman, who first appeared in July 1956, has not been seen since September 1979 when she was killed by the League of Assassins and the Bronze Tiger.


JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:19 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Kurt is the Man

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

OK ... without wanting this to go to his head, I just found out today that Kurt Johnston is the #1 Youth Pastor in the World. How do I know it? This website told me so. Of course, I'm more excited they mention SJH, but what do I know? Congrats, Kurt!

Read his blog, make sure you get his email and subscribe to the monthly training podcast, too.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:43 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Tempers Rise with Gas Prices

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Interesting article about people pretty ticked at the pump. Here's a clip:

Tempers are rising along with gas prices. Gas stations across the country report
that drivers are taking out their gas rage against big oil by yelling at clerks
and cashiers and sometimes driving off without paying.

"Everyone is suffering at the same time," said Sam Shirazie, a clerk at a Chevron station east of downtown Los Angeles. "If I could help to reduce that pain, I would."
No detailed statistics are kept on incidents of gas rage. But the National Association of Convenience Stores said anecdotal evidence indicates they have increased since prices began climbing in February.

Employees of Fleming Corp., which operates 14 gas stations in Kansas and
Missouri, have heard everything from "just a mumble-grumble kind of thing to a cheap shot or blaming the clerk for world oil prices," owner Ed Roitz said.


And you saw GM's $1.99 Gas commercials during Apprentice, right? Interesting idea, I'll give them credit. Someone should do a spinoff with a green car, too.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:39 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Jesus in My Shower

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

This is solidly funny.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:38 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Finished BLACK Tonight

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Finished up the stellar BLACK from EA and Criterion. The gameplay formula wears just a bit thin by the end of the game, but still a very solid title for the Xbox that I'm playing on my 360. At the end of the game it runs some stats after the credits, thought I should let you see them.

Current Rank: Soldier
Total Game Completed: 30%
Number of headshots: 235
Weapon of choice: G38C
Total Game Time 6:10:35
Total enemy count: 1,653
Total bullets fired: 26,196

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:33 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Goodbye to Nicole

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

I've worked to a limited degree with Nicole since day one at Purpose Driven, and this past week she moved on to greener pastures. Or she was put out to pasture? Pasturized? Either way, I don't want to imply she's a cow. Man, this is all coming out wrong. Love you, Nic.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:31 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Here it is ... 2AM Again

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

OK, I'm hooked on BLACK. I just found out that I'm on the last level of the game, but too beat to stay awake. The Memorial Day steak is marinating, the house is clean for company tomorrow, the kids are all asleep - the world is at peace. OK, I'll savor the last bit of BLACK tomorrow. Really, aside from some minor quirks, this is truly an outstanding game.

+ The levels look incredible - great lighting
+ The particle effects (dust, sparks, fragments, chips) are absolutely beautiful
+ Grenades really whomp
+ Tons of different guns to choose from
+ The "focus" effect during reload should become standard on all games [the game goes out of focus except for the gun you are reloading. You really need to see it!]
+ Great explosions and fire
- RPG guys can be a bit cheap
- There's only like 3 different enemies to kill
- Repetitive, repetitive, repetitive
- At best average cut scenes, and odd they are live-action, too
- Lots of cursing, especially near the end
- Menu system a bit too many layers

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:01 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Soul Patrol Finale

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Thought you might enjoy a shot of the boys and I on Wednesday this past week. The American Idol finale is a big deal at the Griffin house. We were all gray-haired for the night - the boys danced and shouted "soul patrol" all night, more excited about the "boys beating the girls" than really anything else. We had so much fun and our friends that were over were so funny, too - good times.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:59 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Fuji Photo Spot at Sea World

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Took a picture of this sign, because it said it was a photo spot. Nice, isn't it?

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:37 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Compartmentalizing Jesus

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Great message tonight from Pastor Rick on world-view and living out your faith day to day.

Had a fun illustration of just that when the kids noticed a little lack of integrity - like me sliding through a stop sign on the way to church tonight. Funny how many times I ask them to obey, then when it comes time for me to do the same I let it slide. Of course, in my defense, the stop sign is pointless, like 4 people a day come through there, it really should be a yield sign - don't ya think?

OK, I think I get the point. Don't compartmentalize Jesus, let your faith enter every area of life. Greater than that, faith IS life itself. We can't be church Christians and office sinners, or give Jesus the afternoon off.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:27 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


X-Men 3 - Too Much Drama, Great Special Effects

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Watched X-Men 3 with new dad Matt Hall and soon to be dad again Leigh Sarti. Pretty good film, really I was wowed by a couple of great action scenes than the overall movie. I think there's a couple of really solid moments in the film, surrounded by a bit too much drama for my taste. It never seemed to break the pace - we're moving toward the last stand the entire time! But, the "house scene" is utterly amazing, and though it gets a bit "Matrixy" at times near the end the film is still a fairly good time. I think the President was horribly cast, and I hated the way (spoiler deleted) dies. Of course, does anyone REALLY die in X-Men? Apparently not, especially if you stayed for the scene after the credits.

In the fight scenes, Wolverine really shined, which makes him an ideal candidate for a spinoff movie and less of the whole team and a mutant soap. Could have been great, but Bryan Singer was too busy making Superman. I'll give this film a 6.5 ...

If you saw the film, post reaction/counterpoint, too!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:45 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Black on Xbox 360

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

The backwards compatibility of the Xbox 360 grew a few in the past few days, to include a game I've been wanting to play pretty badly and now I finally can. It's a brand new game from EA - BLACK. I've just stayed up until ... oh 1:40AM ... playing this game tonight.

It's really fun, and even though it was made for the original Xbox it really looks smooth on the 360. It's bumped up to 480p HDTV, digital surround and of course uses the 360 wireless controllers which are perfect. Pretty good game, I'm enjoying it. A long weekend is always more fun with a new game.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:36 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Full Memorial Day Weekend

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Just getting in from San Deigo and Sea World tonight, spending the day with some friends of ours. Good times, I'll post some pictures tonight or in the morning. Great burrito from Santana's, too.

We've got church tomorrow and a nice day of rest, then we're having some friends over for Memorial Day with Shish-k-bobs on the grill and some quality time at the beach. I hope your weekend is restful and fun!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:04 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Happily Married for 10 Years

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Reading Kurt's post this morning about his upcoming 15th wedding anniversary made me think about how on June 7th it'll be 10 years for Angela and I. Scary, huh? Quite the journey so far - we're taking a few days after the HSM staff retreat to celebrate the big 10. Should be fun - Ang's mom is in town for that week so we'll spend the first half with friends in ministry and then the last half with each other.

Life is good! Love you babe.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:45 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


History of Youth Ministry Vol 1

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!



Pretty funny video from PDYM - the first of four in the series we played at the conference. Now available in Quicktime from SYM. Check it out.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:44 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Best. Lost. Ever.

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

OK, that show is seriously messed up. If you're not watching LOST, you really should be. It is easily one of the best shows on television these days. The season finale was this week, and I finally got around to pulling it off of TiVo tonight. I love it because it is totally confusing and random, and yet you can begin to discover secrets and figure out where the story may lead. Season One is on DVD, and I'm sure this season will be out in time to catch up for the 2006/7 run of the show.

Really truly amazing - this is the ground that 24 was in during it's 3rd season. Innovative and unique design of the show, great characters, and a surprise at every turn. Did you notice the Hanso commercial worked into the mix, too? Love that kind of stuff.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:20 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


New Look for the Blog

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

After working so hard on Kurt's new look, I thought it might be fun to take mine to the next level. Anyhow, I've got lots of adjustments and tweaks to make, but here's round one. Enjoy!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:57 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Taylor Hicks is the American Idol

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Good stuff ... soul patrol! Fun night ... the neighbors probably regret us moving in to this place. What a fun night! A+

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:15 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Best American Idol Article Ever

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

This is a great article in the Washington Post. So funny, I just had to share it. And while I don't agree with it, you've got to read it, too. Here's a clip:
Absolutely everyone had forecast a big win for silver-haired goofball Taylor Hicks over Katharine McPhee before their final "American Idol" performances last night.

Even judges Mopsy, Flopsy and Tipsy.

Still, the show must go on, as they say.

"It's now or never, baby -- you've got to lay it all on the line tonight!" Mopsy says, pulling out the very best from his bag of five gag-inducing cliches.

Tipsy hopes Taylor and Katharine are "in good voice." Flopsy says he "would suggest the contestants pray the other one forgets the words."

This week, the two finalists are forced to revisit two songs they've already sung during the competition, after which they'd be subjected to traditional made-for-"Idol" treacle tunes created just for them.
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:48 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Stacking Hands on the new SYM Catalog

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

The new SYM catalog won't be out for another 4 months, but work has already begun on the monster project. Today we stacked hands on the design of the piece which I think is going to be totally sweet. We landed on a look and feel for the design, a contest that runs throughout, several of what we think are funny bits and, oh yeah, about a jillion great resources for youth workers. Nothing better than the satisfaction of a good meeting and great chili dogs at Weinerschnitsel!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:29 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Austin Carty: From Exile Island to Saddleback Church

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

How cool is it that PDYM Student Leadership is getting one of the castaways from this season's Survivor? Very excited about Austin Carty coming to Saddleback Church this July to challenge students in their spiritual journey and faith in Jesus Christ. Just announced today!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:50 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


American Idol Toss-Up

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Before today I thought that Taylor was going to run away with the title, but after the broadcast tonight I thought Katherine actually gave him a run for his money. My gut still says Taylor, but was pleased that Kat tone down some of her runs and all that jazz to come strong at the Soul Patrol powerhouse. How much do I love this show? Kinda sad, really. There's just so little we can watch on TV as a family.

Tomorrow night there's going to be an American Idol finale gathering of sorts over at the Griffins. We're hosting a Soul Patrol party - we'll see who comes out on top then!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:45 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Simply Junior High Podcast

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Big news today ... I just finished up a new project! This should help explain what I do all day. Or at least for a few hours the past couple of weeks.

Kurt Johnston's Simply Junior High monthly training is now podcasting on iTunes. We uploaded a new show today in honor of the achievement, too. Good stuff, Kurt! Great, free content for the legions of juinor high youth workers. Enjoy!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 5:06 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Anne Geddes Eat Your Heart Out

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

We were at Downtown Disney tonight after work, and stopped by the new Anne Geddes store there in the strip. This is the free part of Disneyland, in case you didn't know. I'm cheap, what can I say? And if you don't know who Anne is, she's the lady who takes pictures of babies with weird flower arrangements and stuff. You gotta follow the link above if this is still hitting you funny. Anyhow, pretty cool stuff, Angela was excited about it and the kids were mesmerized by the gallery of babies.

While I was there, I handed Lexie a plant to see if I had the same magic that Anne does when she takes pictures. Apparently a) I do have that same magic, and b) just being in her studio made my camera-phone picture that much more awesome and my child even more beautiful than any normal situation.

I think I've got the gift. Thoughts?


JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:47 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Sports Brings Out the Best in Us

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

this is an audio post - click to play

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 5:39 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Lost: The Videogame

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Love the show ... but would it make a good videogame? Wonder no more:
"We are delighted to work with Bryan Burk, one of the biggest producers in Hollywood and with Touchstone Television," said Yves Guillemot, CEO of Ubisoft. "That they have chosen us for the adaptation of the cult series 'Lost' is the best homage that a producer can make to the creativity of Ubisoft."

Bruce Gersh, senior vice president, business development, ABC Entertainment and Touchstone Television said, "We are excited to work together with Ubisoft to create a gaming experience that will allow fans to further immerse themselves into the mysteries and intrigues of the series."

"The creative appeal of Lost transcends borders with its character driven stories and addictive mysterious mythology," said Julia Franz of Touchstone Television. "It's not enough for fans worldwide to just watch Lost, the game is a wonderful opportunity to organically extend this creative phenomenon into an interactive consumer experience."
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 3:42 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Bring on the Noyz

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


This is our Wildside group putting on a little Noyz performance at PDYM this year. Just noticed it on You Tube and thought I should show it off.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:40 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Megachurch Humor

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

YouTube: King of the Hill takes on megachurches. Not to be missed.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:23 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Madonna on the Cross

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Oh, Madonna. You never quit, do you? Here's an article from the LA Times last night:
Later on, she donned a crown of thorns and suspended herself from a giant mirrored cross to deliver the ballad "Live to Tell." Video screens showed images of third-world poverty and reeled off grim statistics. During one of her half-dozen costume changes, another video montage juxtaposed images of Bush, members of his administration and British Prime Minister Tony Blair with footage of Adolf Hitler, Osama bin Laden, and Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe.
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:15 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


My table at HSM

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Here's McKinsie and Aly at my table from HSM. I took this shot of them Saturday night during the All Out War series. You made the blog, ladies! JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:35 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Monday Morning Inspiration

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

If you need some Monday morning inspiration? Check out Despair, Inc they make those funny calendars and posters that defeat and dampen your spirit. And have you seen their video podcast? I'm checking it out now, looks pretty funny so far. Kinda reminds me of an Office episode crossed with a book promotion. Pretty funny.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 4:00 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Davinci Does 77M at the Box Office

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Davinci got $10 of my hard-earned money this weekend.

OK, it was actually McGill's $10 since I took at Minister of the Day (MoD) shift for him on Friday and he paid me back with a movie Friday night. Davinci raked in almost 225M worldwide in it's first weekend of release. Not bad for a film that completely bombed in my opinion.

Someone there said, "I couldn't put the book down" which is great, but I can't put this movie down enough either. Not good.

I think I'm still excited to talk about it in church this weekend, but then I'm past it for sure. I might read Josh McDowell's new book we gave away this weekend to HSM students, but I'm not nearly as hooked as I anticipated.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 3:26 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Driving Home After HSM

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

this is an audio post - click to play

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 8:25 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


No Rumble in PS3 Controller

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Just an interesting note about the PS3 controller not having a rumble feature that has become standard on all systems since the N64. Not a deal breaker, but an unusual deletion.
In 2004 Immersion sued Sony for violating rumble patents with their PlayStation controllers. Immersion believes that it is not impossible to have rumble in the PS3 controllers, and has offered solutions to Sony. Sony stated at E3 that the tilt functionality interfered with rumble. However, Immersion wants Sony to drop the appeal, and award Immersion the $90 million in damages before they'll help Sony out.
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:02 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Sunny Delight Spill

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Check out this article about a spill of Sunny Delight. Not exactly the Exxon Valdez, but still worth noting. Apparently about 8,000 liters spill into a local creek. Nice.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:58 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Kurt's Got a New Look

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Check out Kurt's new look on his blog. We put it together yesterday and I think it turned out pretty good. We've got a few tweaks left on it, but I think it'll impress.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:56 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


The Divinci Bomb

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Just got home from seeing the Divinci Code with McGill. We had to wait for the 10:40pm show to start since the 10:20 was sold out. Ours filled up as well though we managed to get pretty good seats.

But wow, I wish I could get those 2 1/2 hours of my life back. Full review of it tomorrow, that was pretty bad. At least the Road to E3 got Tivo'd.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:10 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Guy Sleeping in Rick's Session

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


This was just a funny shot I had to share today during the PDC conference.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:20 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Granger's Face the Music Series

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Granger Community Church is doing a new series with an iPod look and feel that looks really sharp. Innovative fellas over there ... check out the new series here.
Music defines generations. It captures the senses and expresses emotions we didn’t know we had inside. It reflects our desires, our dreams for the future and sometimes, our biggest fears.

And if you listen carefully you might even hear a longing for purpose, a fresh start...and God.

Join us for the next five weeks as we listen to the heart and consider the truths of today’s hottest music - like songs by Nickelback, Natasha Bedingfield, Kenny Chesney and Coldplay.
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:17 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Lee Strobel Apologetics

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Lee Strobel at lunch yesterday talked about hundreds of free videos on his newly-launched website LeeStrobel.com. There's even a large selection on The Davinci Code for people to use personally, in their small groups and church services in the coming weeks. It sounded so great - someone donated a sum of money so everything could be offered for free.

As he spoke about seekers and the upcoming needs of the people in the church, my mind went to how much of mainstream Christianity and this generation of the church has been largely about seekers. As I thought about their infant faith, and then that new faith passed on to their children, the need for apologetics and defense and evidence for belief will be stronger than ever before. What a great free resource!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 8:49 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


SYM Podcast Episode 16

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

The latest episode of the Youth Ministry podcast is up over at Simply Youth Ministry and on iTunes. Don't miss it - I appear in the show for almost 20 minutes before having to leave early to host PDC!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:45 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Pictures from E3

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Jake checking out Windows Vista

Jake and I in the Xbox360 press lounge

Inside the Gears of War demo with CliffyB

Hadn't got these posted yet, so thought I would toss up some shots from E3. Enjoy!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:15 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Plush Jesus

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Wild. Check this link.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:09 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Conscious on a Coffee Cup

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

The Independent talks about Rick's new Starbucks cup and Saddleback a bit today. Here's a clip:
Rick Warren is not your typical American evangelist. He's not an especially charismatic speaker, keeping his rhetoric deliberately folksy and low key. He's unassuming, a little bit pudgy and has a fondness for Hawaiian shirts, even when he's delivering his weekend sermons.

A long time ago, he decided he never wanted to be on television. He doesn't think a lot of televangelists or the powerful, media-anointed leaders of the Christian right, whom he accuses of "self-centred consumerism" and self-aggrandisement at the expense of their spiritual mission. Until relatively recently, he worked almost entirely under the radar and, despite building a movement of extraordinary power and reach in churches around the world, was barely known in the broader culture.

And yet he has achieved extraordinary things, and intends to keep achieving many more. His church, which he founded from scratch 26 years ago in the freshly planted suburbs of Orange County, south of Los Angeles, attracts more than 20,000 worshippers each week, making it one of the three largest congregations in the country. His sermons, which he posts on the internet, are downloaded and used by thousands of churches around the world.

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:57 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Terrible Bible Action Figures

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

This has got to be a joke, right? Wow.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:46 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


My Friend Looks Like Philip Seymour Hoffman

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

I just took this picture of Andrew, a friend of mine from PD, who I think looks a lot like Philip Seymour Hoffman. What do you think?

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:31 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


The Bible Disclaimer

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Ian McKellen from the Davinci Code thinks the Bible should carry a disclaimer. Interesting perspective:

There was a pause, and then famed British actor Ian McKellen [Gandalf of Lord of the Rings], piped up:

"Well, I've often thought the Bible should have a disclaimer in the front saying this is fiction. I mean, walking on water, it takes an act of faith. And I have faith in this movie. Not that it's true, not that it's factual, but that it's a jolly good story. And I think audiences are clever enough and bright enough to separate out fact and fiction, and discuss the thing after they've seen it."

With the camera focused on McKellen, one could hear a distinctly nervous laugh in the background, seeming to come from either actor Tom Hanks or director Howard. McKellen's stunning bit of blasphemy is likely to test the adage that all publicity is good publicity.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:43 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Long Day Done

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

OK, just getting home and launching the new Student Leader page for SYM. Between the PDC conference, the podcast and out with some friends from Michigan that won a 2006 Health Award, this family is beat. Not beat enough to go to bed, mind you, just beat enough to blog a bit then watch American Idol before crashing hard.

Penn Friends Community Church was one of the winners of the 2006 Health Award from Purpose Driven - I was standing just off stage and Rick was announcing them. I heard Penn Friends? How many of those are there in the world? Sure enough, some good friends and new ones, too turned out to recieve the award. I coulnd't be more proud of them, it sounds like they're turning their community upsidedown for Jesus. Awesome!

To Bonnie and Wayne - thanks for the Cheesecake Factory tonight, too. So good seeing you!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:18 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Backstage at PDC

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Just hanging out here at the Purpose Driven Church Conference here at Saddleback, doing the emcee/announcements at the end of each general session. Thought it would be fun to share a picture from the green room, bunch of staff working furiously behind the scenes to pull it off. Had a funny joke about senior pastors being old, which is always good times.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:13 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Beat Jason 3 Games to 1

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Had a good day on the raquetball court! After Jason romped me last week, I was able to come back strong and start this week out right with 3 solid games to 1. Good stuff! I need a new raquet though ... this one looks nice ...

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:38 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Airplanes and Thunderstorms

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

This video is worth checking out. Cool.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:22 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Websites I've Had Some Part In

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

I get some questions about my checkered internet past - including rumors of a rather large Star Wars website. Yes, they're all true, I'm afraid. I'm a big geek at heart. Here's a list of some of the websites I currently manage and/or have managed in the past:

TheForce.Net - I was editor/co-owner of the website for maybe 7 years, and currently co-owner of the website and taking a quiet or even silent role these days. It has afforded me some pretty cool experiences in life, including visiting Skywalker Ranch, digital theater press screenings, access to E3, press interviews, speaking engagements and even meeting Lucas himself. Pretty cool stuff, it was a great adventure! The site has been featured in the Wall St. Journal, Business 2.0, Entertainment Weekly, USA Today, TIME and many, many more. It is currently ranked maybe 8,000 in the world, though it has cracked the worldwide top 1,000 websites when the Star Wars prequels hit theaters.

MovieHeadlines.Net - Scott Chitwood and I started this website and eventually rolled it into ComingSoon.Net, where he still contributes regularly. I've done some stuff for them as well, but my youth ministry schedule these days and family obligations conflict all too often, which is OK with me, too.

Filmforce - I started this website with the guys from TFN, we felt that we had the knowledge and expertise to start a general movie site and not just limit it to Star Wars. Good stuff.

In the Christian world I manage the blog you are reading as well as PDYMCommunity.com, a website for youth workers to connect in community and find models and mentoring. I also dabble over at SimplyYouthMinistry.com,
a great place to find youth ministry resources and tools to be even more effective. And don't forget about the podcast and SJH, too.

So there you have it - more than you wanted to know!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:47 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Emcee the PDC Conference

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

I'll be gone most of tomorrow and Wednesday, handling the emcee duties for the Purpose Driven Church Conference. I'm most excited about hanging with a bunch of senior pastors and encouraging them not to kill their youth worker. What a great chance to talk with your boss!

I'm also excited about meeting some great guests on campus, too - like Tim Stevens, Tony Morgan, Kerry Shook and Kenny Luck. Good people!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:53 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Fewer People Going to Church

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Interesting article from the Agape Press today about church attendance. Not sure I agree with some of the more subjective conclusions, but interesting nonetheless:

A new study concludes the number of Americans attending church every Sunday is a whole lot less than what has been reported. One of the researchers suggests that the success of mega-churches across the country could be one reason for the misperception about how many Americans actually spend Sunday morning in a worship service.

Christianity Today notes that for years, Gallup pollsters have reported that 40 percent of Americans -- roughly 118 million people -- attend a church every Sunday. But a new study done by an Episcopal Church researcher, Kirk Hadaway, and Penny Marler of Samford University concludes the actual number is much less than that.
They did a "count-based" estimate of church attendance -- in other words, actual attendance figures -- and concluded that only about 20 percent of Americans go to a church on Sunday.

That lower figure, says Hadaway, may come as a surprise to many. But he believes part of the problem may be that people see or hear about the big crowds attending the mega-churches and get the impression that church attendance overall is increasing.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:50 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Passion and Survivor Finale

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Had a great Mother's Day today - got Ang some nice gifts including Snapple Peach Iced Tea and a chaise lounger for getting some sun. Good stuff. Went to church as a family, had about 100 people at the Passion service and then over to Fields for Survivor. In my sealed envelope since week I had Terry and Danielle as 1st and 2nd ... too bad that Aras won. Oh well, I'll be back with some funny observations about the show in the morning, too. Good day, and now, good night!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:30 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


That Was Easy - Faceplates on eBay

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

I wanted to find a good home for my Gears of War media-exclusive faceplate for the Xbox360 - and I guess that was easy. I listed it and 12 hours later it was gone because someone gave me a price I liked. Maybe I should have jacked it up? I sold it for $125.

Of course, in response to the action I listed my Zero Hour launch party exclusive faceplate on eBay, too - so we'll see what happens there. Nice!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:50 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Gears of War Faceplate on eBay

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Just slapped up the exclusive Gears of War Xbox 360 faceplate up on eBay. I love the console just white, and I'm expecting this rare media-only giveaway to go for big bucks - gotta have some lunch money. Anyhow, pretty sweet stuff!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 6:22 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Our Kids and Fruit

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Angela had a teachable moment with the kids today - she was helping them learn about obedience and this funny story emerged.

The boys have been playing lots of preschool stuff on the home computer recently, but they have to be off by 11AM sharp and play with non-electronic stuff. Today, as Angela was walking up the stairs shortly after 11, she heard the clicks of a mouse and laughter of the boys as they played the computer. They heard her coming up the stairs, she could hear the computer being clicked off and the scamper of little feet running away.

She found them in the bathroom, hiding from her. In a very godly, motherly way she told them the story of Adam and Eve, and how they ate the forbidden fruit and then hid from God just like they were doing. She was particularly impressed with the way they listened and really felt that her motherly duty was complete.

Later that afternoon at the park, she revealed a treat for the kids - some fruit! They were all very excited about it except Austin, who looked at mom and in all seriousness said, "I don't want any - God doesn't want me to eat the apple."

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:30 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Other Great Games and Notes from E3

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Aside from the stunning Gears of War which EASILY was Best of Show ... there were tons of other games that looked and played amazing. Here's a list of what I think are the runner ups.

HALO 3 - Although only in video form, this is going to be the bad boy of 2007. I can't wait and am super pumped about the possibilites of this game. This is the final Halo in the trilogy, and the game engine looks SO powerful. Gears of War is must-have 2006, Halo is must have 2007. These two are system sellers.

RAINBOX 6 VEGAS - This excited me, because I love the Xbox Rainbow 6 titles. I like the location, the screenshots have been great and to see the guys play it in real-time was cool. They played a level rescuing hostages in a casino, then saw there was a bomb in another building across the street. The other building blew up, then the shockwave came across and blew out all the windows. And the chopper scenes flying over Vegas looked GREAT.

MEDAL OF HONOR AIRBORNE - EA had a killer half-acre booth at E3 and this was the best trailer. It was definitely pre-rendered, so its hard to know what to expect. Very ppwerful looking. We'll have to see.

HAZE - My only wish on this was that I hadn't seen Gears of War right before I saw this demonstration. The presentation was pretty innovative, and the game looked good. Probably the 360's Pariah, but still looks interesting to me.

PREY - Almost forgot about this one - probably because it's coming out so soon. This title looks a bit creepy, but VERY cool. I love shooting through portals and the designs look great. Hopefully this will tide me over until the Fall.

BATTLEFIELD 2142 - This was running on the PCs at the event, but I want to play this game. Is it coming to the 360? Not sure, but it looked like a great title. Everything we love about the 1942 original game, but updated into something futuristic. Very cool.

What about F.E.A.R., Bioshock, Street Fighter Arcade, Lego Star Wars 2, Indiana Jones and Fable 2? I just didn't get enough time with them but they all look/sound great, too. So much to see, so little time.

All in all, a fantastic afternoon at E3 and a great time hanging with Jake.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:08 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Best of Show at E3

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Gears of War.

It easily eclipses any other game there by a mile. And dare I say it, at the risk of video game blasphemy, I'm more excited about this title than Halo 3. I know that it's early in Halo's life and late in Gears' development cycle, but this thing is so stinkin' awesome you've absolutely got to see it to believe it.

Or, you could take the other route. Refuse to see anything about it until September, just believe the hype. Believe that it is THAT good and take it all in on Emergence Day 2006 in the purest form. Wow, from meeting the designer of the game (CliffyB) today to seeing the entire first level twice, I'm sincerely blown away.

After that 15-minute demo we moved up to the media-only section of the massive 360 booth, where we got to witness 16 player multiplayer mayhem. Absolutely amazing. Great control, incredible design, stunning graphics and fantastic sound. In fact, some parts of it were SO good I seriously thought it was a prerendered movie. The designer made sure muiltiple times that HE was controlling it in real time and I have to tell him thanks for the assurance because I was fooled.

Gang, this is it and the 360 is the system. With this title this fall plus other notable titles I'll mention in the next post that stood out at E3, you've got to get in on this. Wow.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:28 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


I Like Andy's Blog

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Andy went from not having a blog or any interest in one, to having a blog and it's pretty interesting. He's going all audio, and it rocks. Check it out!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:24 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Picking Up Fields and Headed to E3

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

OK, so I stayed up until 2AM and have been cranking this morning on projects so I can head up to LAX to pick up Fields and McGill from the airport. OK, that's not exactly the reason I was working so hard.

From the airport I'm taking a slight detour to the big E3 show as long as we're in LA. Jake Rutenbar and I are taking 2 vehicles to make this happen, so don't get me started on gas prices!

Pretty sweet stuff. Full report from E3 tonight!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:22 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Domo Arigato Mr. Lovato: 24 vs. American Idol

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

You should read what my friend Mike posted about the American Idol from last night. Domo Arigato Mr. Lovato: 24 vs. American Idol

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:21 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Congratulations to Natalie

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

OK, so Natalie won our little bet from yesterday here at the SYM offices. Chris was voted off American Idol as she predicted. You win ... I'm at the church office this morning as well, last night's show is the talk of the town.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:44 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


SYM Podcast Episode 15

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

From Germany with love. The Simply Youth Ministry podcast is now up. Episode 15 comes to us from Deutchland - Doug and Matt are on a journey of international intrigue and excitement teaching at a Willow Conference. Don't miss the first road trip show with special German guests, too!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:15 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Jesus Pan and Rapture Pet Care

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Couple of funny links this week poking fun at Christians:
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:09 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


New Speakers Added to PDYM Student Leadership

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Pretty exciting day today - we added Greg Stier, Jay Strack and Jim Burns to the speaking schedule for PDYM Student Leadership Conference. Good stuff, those guys are GREAT - this is going to be a powerful event for students this July.

I think my favorite part of the whole thing is the idea of my students finally "getting" what PDYM is all about and getting on board with the vision for the church. Gonna be cool watching it 'click' for so many of them,

If you've got student leaders, get them this.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:02 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


You've Got to Be Kidding Me!

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

I guess you can't complain if you didn't vote (like me), but still.

Chris?

I thought for sure he was the American Idol. I'm less bummed about losing this bet to the SYM staffers than I am about losing my pick to win the show. That dude was the one. Oh well ...

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:50 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Taylor Hicks is Going Down Tonight

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Sorry Taylor, tonight's your night to go home.

I've got a feeling that this is the surprise end of the road for our favorite gray-haired American Idol contestant. The reason?

I can't remember his name.

I can tell you about all about Chris the Rocker (those sunglasses were terrible), Catherine the Pretty One (was that a suit with belly showing), Elliot the Everyman (smoker's voice) but for the life of me I can't ever pull up the name Taylor. Even when writing this I had to ask the team what's the name of the grey-haired guy? So, because he doesn't have an identity in my mind, I say he's done.

I'm betting lunch with the SYM gang on it I'm so confident (not Andy, because he denies the show exists).

Goodbye, Taylor ... sorry, soul patrol!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:27 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


How Bad Do I Want This

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Oh man ... how bad to I want this!? The new Xbox 360 wireless headset. I'm pretty sure this coupled with my wireless controller could be the downfall of any semblance of family time I had left to give. Yes, I just used the word 'semblance' in a post about video games. Rugged.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:06 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


World of Warcraft Movie

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

In the "Matt McGill will be so pumped" department comes the news that World of Warcraft is going to be made into a big budget movie. I'm sure angels are dancing on that news - well, at least Matt is dancing on his gout feet.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:03 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Family Night at the Griffins

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Had a great day at the office today, sent out a PDYM Neighborhood newsletter, took care of some long-overdue receipts from PDYM (my least favorite part of life, I think) and cleaned up a few hundred various PDYM/SYM tasks. Great fun - no podcast here in the States this week because Matt and Fields are doing it from the road as they wrap up a tour of Germany.

Over lunch today, Jason schooled me in raquetball 3-nil. I don't really want to talk about it anymore. Propel is expensive.

Tonight we had a family night and went to Saddleback for a magic show for the kids in the Worship Center. It was good for us and GREAT for the kids, we topped it off with pizza at Rubino's and are home for the night. Whew! Solid day.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:38 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


What Would Jesus Think of Mega Churches?

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Here's an interesting article in the Register-Herald about megachurches. Saddleback is mentioned, in this clip:

The letter arrived in my mailbox unannounced. It laid out a plan for starting a new church outside town with another congregation. This new church would have plenty of parking, a multipurpose building and baseball and soccer fields.

I appreciated the consideration of the letter since I only attend that church and am not a member. But I was a little surprised because I hadn’t realized anyone at the church was imagining this new direction.

The Great Commission in Matthew Chapter 28 says to go forth teaching, preaching and baptizing in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost. It says nothing about building soccer fields and multipurpose buildings.

It’s the mega-church movement, the big-box concept lived out in the evangelical community. According to The Week Magazine’s Web site, the United States has 1,210 churches with congregations of more than 2,000 people. Three sources I consulted used 2,000 to define a mega-church.

Some of the mega-churches have their own restaurants and coffee shops plus myriad other activities going on at their “campuses.” Rick Warren, pastor of the nation’s largest church, said the parking lot at his Saddleback Church is 30 acres.

The “build it and they will come” mentality came from Hollywood, not the Holy Word.


JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:33 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


HALO 3

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Hello my little friend. CLICK NOW

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 3:09 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Rick's Starbucks Cup

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

I've seen The Way I See It #92 - in fact I've seen it twice now. I was at a Starbucks in Seattle and saw the cup, then just today here in the OC the guy who Andy and I were meeting with about the new SYM website got the cup, too. Click here to view the cup and enter the PD Cafe. You are not an accident!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:09 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Kay Warren Interview

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Christianity Today has a new article interviewing Kay Warren - she'll be one of the speakers this Sunday at our Mother's Day services, too.

It took a magazine article in 2002 to completely change the trajectory of Kay Warren's comfortable suburban life. Then 48 and the wife of Rick Warren, author of the bestselling book The Purpose-Driven Life and pastor of Southern California's megachurch, Saddleback, Kay was a busy "soccer mom" of three who dreamed, once
their nest was empty, of sharing a platform with Rick and ministering to pastors' wives.

Then one day Kay picked up a news magazine and was arrested by an article on AIDS. When she read that 12 million children were orphaned in Africa due to AIDS, "I realized I didn't know even one orphan. I couldn't imagine millions of them anywhere," she admits. "That number haunted me. My life's never been the same."
Since that "divine appointment," Kay, now 52, has become a woman on a mission. Despite being treated for breast cancer in 2003, in the last four years Kay has visited Africa five times plus six other countries. Rick, with whom she celebrates their 31st wedding anniversary this June, caught Kay's passion for HIV/AIDS ministry, and together they, along with lay teams from Saddleback and other Purpose-Driven churches, travel overseas to work with local church, business, and political leaders to combat the AIDS pandemic. Their hope is for more churches and individuals to become personally involved.

But Kay's mission isn't only global; she's equally passionate about ministering to HIV-positive people in her community. To this end, last November, Kay initiated the first annual Saddleback-sponsored international HIV/AIDS conference, Disturbing Voices, to create awareness within the church body about the pressing local needs to minister to those with HIV.


JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:08 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Skeptical of Saddleback

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Interesting article today in the SF Chronicle about Saddleback, Kay Warren and the AIDS initiative. Here's a clip:

Witchey roughly estimates that two-thirds of the foundation's clientele is gay.
"There are people concerned that Saddleback would want to try to convert them
from gay to straight," he said.

With 22,000 people attending services every weekend at its 120-acre campus in Lake Forest, the Saddleback community would seem to be a bottomless resource to help support those with HIV. Volunteers are certainly needed in Orange County. Health officials say 3,278 people in the county were living with AIDS in 2005, 84 percent more than in 1995. Federal funding to fight the disease in the county has dropped 3 percent a year for the past three years. And burnout leads to a constant churn of volunteers at organizations fighting an epidemic that is now in its third decade.

Other religious organizations, such as the National Episcopal AIDS Coalition and various interfaith groups, have worked with people with HIV for years. In San Francisco, Catholic Charities provides supportive housing for people with HIV. "For me, it is about purpose and agenda," said Donna Fleming, program manager for Orange County's HIV Planning and Coordination office. "If they have a religious agenda, that is fine, as long as they are up front about it, and people know where they are coming from. And then those agencies can make their own decisions about whether to get involved.

"There is other work to be done," Fleming said. "They just need to show up at (HIV-related) events and keep showing up to show they're committed." Warren says she understands that Saddleback is going to "have to earn its stripes."

"Now we show up at the football game, and the game is in progress," she said. "And the coach looks around, and he has more than enough players sitting there on his bench -- or not -- and he says, 'Maybe next game. Or maybe next year.' Just because they don't trust us, they're not going to put us in the game." Fleming suggested that there probably wouldn't be much resistance from skeptical HIV care providers if Saddleback volunteers wanted to do things like stock food pantries, where they would be less likely to be in contact with people with HIV.

Warren said Saddleback members are willing to stock shelves, but she doesn't want church members to be isolated from people with HIV. The point of Saddleback's HIV ministry -- or Care Teams, as the church calls them -- to is to interact with the sick and their families at their time of need, and literally hold their hands.


JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:04 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Be Responsible

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Youth workers: take the new PDYM poll - what are you responsible at your church? VOTE HERE

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:30 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Newspaper Circulation Dropping

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Does this surprise anyone? I don't think I've taken a paper since I was born. Unless it's USA Today in a hotel, I'm reading the net for news. Here's an excerpt:

Average paid circulation at Sunday newspapers fell 3.1 percent versus the same period a year ago, also a comparable decline with the last time circulation tallies were reported, the NAA said.

The figures were based on NAA's analysis of circulation figures released Monday by the Audit Bureau of Circulations, a separate group which reports figures on individual newspapers but not industrywide data.

Despite the declines in paid copies, the NAA also reported Monday that newspaper-run Web sites had an 8 percent increase in viewers in the first quarter. The data from Nielsen/NetRatings found that newspaper Web sites averaged 56 million users in the period, or 37 percent of all online users in the period, the NAA said.

According to Audit Bureau data, Gannett Co.'s USA Today remained the top-selling newspaper with 2,272,815 copies, up 0.09 percent from the same period a year ago; while The Wall Street Journal, published by Dow Jones & Co., was second with 2,049,786, down 1 percent.


JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:35 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Decoding the EULA Code

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Ever clicked "I agree" when installing new software fromMicrosoft? Linux Advocate has an explanation line by line of what you're agreeing to. I'm a Windows guy all the way, but still enjoy reading stuff like this. Check it out!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:28 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Gas is $3.43 - Argh!

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Driving to the office today, noticed that gas prices jumped to $3.43 for the cheapest gas here in the OC. That hurts just a little bit! For the lowest (or highest) price of gas in the area, I check this website. There's probably one for where you live, too!

JG

PS: And then on the radio, they threaten $4/gallon by the end of the week.

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 8:49 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Transformers, the Movie

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

You know a Transformers live-action movie is coming to a theater near you in 2007, right? IGN has a scoop on some of the cast members. Man, I loved that stuff as a kid. Star Wars is going live-action (on TV though), too. It's not exactly new news, but if Transformers is new to you, this will be, too.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 8:47 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Funny Satire Directed at PD

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

This made me laugh today. Here's a clip:

Youth pastor Josh Dyson, an advocate of contemplative spirituality, was disappointed with his church’s decision to maintain their current seeker-sensitive style. Argued Dyson, "Look, I'm all for manipulating the congregation's emotions with a professional worship program, but if I hear another half-hour power praise medley with Barry Manilow crescendos, I'm going to stab pencils in my ears. I need some quiet time right now, dude.

When asked about the elders' concern that contemplative spirituality smacks of Eastern mysticism, Dyson bristled at the charge. "Leave it to some old schoolers to demand biblical support before bringing cool ideas into the church. I mean, why should Buddhists enjoy all the bangin' paths to divinity?" Dyson readily admits to practicing a mantra-like, one-word prayer to empty his mind as part of his morning ritual, followed by Cap'n Crunch and a Red Bull chaser. "It releases my consciousness from earthly restraints and brings me closer to my Source," he revealed. "In fact, I'm still in an altered state of consciousness right now... no, wait. I think I just lost a contact lens. Never mind."

Pastor Wiggins understands his youth pastor’s appreciation for contemplative spirituality, but he doesn’t believe this practice is part of God’s dream for New Day Family Church right now. “If the Lord wanted our church to be involved with contemplative spirituality He wouldn’t have given us a rockin' praise band and a quarter million dollar sound system that can blow the cushions off our theater seating,” Wiggins said. “There’s plenty of time for us to ‘enter the silence’ when the congregation begins to suffer more significant hearing loss.”

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:56 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


SYM Podcast by the numbers

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

1 Peak rank of the show in Religion and Spirituality on iTunes
5 Current rank of the SYM Video podcast
46 Megabytes saved by shrinking the video podcast quality
10 Megabyte pipeline for the SYM content server
20+ Megabyte pipeline for downloads starting soon
100 Gigabyte daily weekday downloads from the content server
1400 Last month's total download bandwidth in gigabytes

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:43 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Family Day and Passion

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Had a great day with the family after a couple weeks of travelling off and on. I may have snuck out for an hour to play some racquetball time with Jason (and he may have smoked me 3 games to one, too) but other than that enjoyed a full day with the kids.

Tonight we went to Passion and had a nice crowd - a pastor from East Lake in San Diego, Mike Meeks, filled in for Rick tonight and finished the Workplace series. Great stuff, anytime a pastor uses clips from Conan and Seinfeld, I'm more than into it. Cool learning about how a simple conversation can change someone's life direction! I can think very specifically of one conversation that changed my life forever - that's why I'm in youth ministry! Next week at Saddleback we'll hear from Kay Warren, amongst others, for Mother's Day. Should be great!

After church we had some friends over for burgers and dogs on the grill. Good excuse to clean the house and get ready for a big week ahead. And yes, I'm just going to bed now, up late working on a Purpose Driven Church Conference project. Just finished - whew!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:37 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Great American Idol Article

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Interesting article in the weekend Variety about one of my top 5 shows - American Idol. The whole thing is worth the read - here's a clip:

Yes, it's getting ridiculous.

In its fifth season, "American Idol" is re-arranging the entire showbiz landscape. There are hits and there are hits; this show is a full-fledged cultural phenom. "Idol" is steamrolling every show in its path and generating hundreds of millions of dollars every year in ad sales for Fox. But "Idol" riches are also trickling into many other sectors of the showbiz economy.

TV shows, newspapers and record labels that touch the show have enjoyed a lucrative ride on the "Idol" express. And the show's shadow economy isn't limited to media -- it's also lifted the fortunes of a wide array of "Idol" carpetbaggers, from Cingular to Coca-Cola to a host of licensees.

The attention is flattering, but Fox and the producers aren't always thrilled by the frenzy and the risks of overexposure. Still, a frenzy is pretty much guaranteed right up through the show's finale, which airs May 24, before the series goes into hibernation until next year.

"Idol" is not a saga of brilliant showbiz vision. As Bill Carter details in his new book "Desperate Networks," every network passed on "Idol" before Fox came along. Even Fox was skeptical: the web only picked up the show after Rupert Murdoch, at the behest of various people including his daughter Elisabeth, instructed the network to
close the deal.


JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:35 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Mission: Impossible 3 Review

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Pretty solid movie. Went with Leigh, Drew, Gerry and about half of the HSM team. The theater was packed, so we got a pretty terrible angle and everyone had to sit in different places. On place I won't sit is in the first 2 rows of any theater - why do they even have seats there?

Regardless, it really was a great movie. I'd give it 4 out of 5 for sure. Thankfully it stuck to the M:I mold but not too cliche in so many other ways like current Hollywood. I LOVE the villian in the film (played by Philip Seymore Hoffman) and have few gripes from start to finish.

Too bad the film only picked up 48M this weekend, I think that is a dissapointment for the studio. Perhaps Tom Cruise's love life, new baby and general drama hurt the film? I've stayed away from that pretty much (as much as anyone can) and just enjoyed the movie.

Positive word of mouth will help the film - and be sure to read my friend Scott's full review - he always posts great stuff, check it out on CS!.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:08 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Good Parody Stings a Bit

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Funny article about Christians this week in The Onion. Here's a clip below, the rest is at the link:

GAINESVILLE, FL–In an address before three fellow residents of Tenney Hall's fourth-floor west wing Tuesday, University of Florida sophomore Jeff Arnell, 18, issued a warning about the Christian in 462.

"If you see the guy who lives in the single down at the end of the hall, get away," Arnell told Troy Rasbach, Pete Marquez and Jonathan Wilkins, who had assembled in Arnell's room to watch SportsCenter. "He'll totally corner you and start telling you about Jesus."

According to Arnell, the Christian, Ocala, FL, elementary-education major Matthew Leske, not only attends church on a regular basis despite a lack of parental supervision at school, but also voluntarily goes to campus prayer meetings and other Christian youth-group functions.

Arnell said he first suspected his dormmate's faith in the Lord last Friday.


JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 4:46 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Moral Flexibility

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Watched "Thank You for Not Smoking" with Andy in Seattle next week. Pretty base movie, but there was a great subject that is brought up by one of the main characters. When asked about the character he did or didn't have working in the tabacco industry, he replied to his son that it required some "moral flexibility." Just thought that term was worth noting in our lives and youth ministry, too.

Are we morally flexible, is our character situation sensitive, or is it very clear what is right or wrong with the utmost consistency? People should know where we stand and see character every day, even in the little things. Sweat the small stuff.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 4:42 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


New Gears of War Screenshot

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


One of the many reasons I'm happy with my Xbox360 is because of a few upcoming games, one of them being Gears of War. Today a new screenshot was released from the game due this Fall. Check it out over at IGN.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:12 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Zondervan Buys Youth Specialties

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Interesting moves this week in the youth ministry world. This from the Christian Post:
Zondervan has acquired a youth ministry organization that provides publications, resources, training, and encouragement for youth workers and youth-oriented organizations around the world, according to a public announcement made on Tuesday.

The Christian communication company’s acquisition of Youth Specialties marks the culmination of a 30-year business relationship – including a co-publishing and distribution partnership – between the two companies. To date, the Youth Specialties/Zondervan partnership has published more than 500 resources that help youth workers connect with kids and help them experience the adventure and excitement of faith."

Youth Specialties has consistently proven itself as an innovator and trusted resource committed to meeting the unique needs of youth ministries," stated Doug Lockhart, Zondervan President and CEO, in Tuesday’s announcement. "Our three decade relationship has been extremely positive and complementary and our respective missions are closely aligned. This acquisition is a natural fit as Zondervan continues to look for ways to expand our impact. We look forward to embracing the entire YS team into our family and to supporting their efforts to reach the next generation."

Each year, Youth Specialties serves more than 100,000 volunteer and career youth workers through conventions, training seminars and youth worker retreats. The company also serves youth ministries with books, CD-ROMS, videos, the magazine Journal of Student Ministries and online resources. It reaches beyond the borders of the U.S. through its Spanish division, Especialidades Juveniles.
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:04 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


The Real Mission: Impossible

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

I'm hoping to see MI:3 tomorrow at our local movie theater after the student ministry - but before the review here a funny related article:

The management of The Los Angeles Times said a musical promotion for Paramount Pictures' upcoming movie, "Mission: Impossible III" was designed to turn the "everyday news rack experience" into an "extraordinary mission." But the stunt created a real mission for federal law enforcement officers who had to evacuate patients and staff at an area veterans' medical facility last week.

The plan was to conceal digital audio players in 4,500 randomly selected newspaper boxes around Los Angeles and Ventura County. When newspaper buyers opened the racks, the six inch long, two-and-a-half inch wide red plastic boxes -- connected to activator switches on the news rack doors -- would play the easily-recognizable "Mission: Impossible" theme song. A photo of the movie's star, Tom Cruise, adorned a promotional poster on the front of the racks, although there was no warning that the doors had been rigged to play music.

Despite the simplicity of the plan, the digital audio players and the red, white and black wires leading to their activator switches did not stay concealed. One newspaper buyer saw the device and switch, thought it was a bomb and called authorities. After an inspection of the newspaper rack could not determine whether the device was explosive, the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department bomb squad blew up the newspaper rack.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:01 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


NBC Goes Viral Video

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

NBC is getting into the YouTube game, making sure their funny and viral videos make it up and accessible on the web. Check out all of them here, and make sure you watch Lazy Sunday, Laser Cats and the Deal or No Deal SNL spoof, too.

iFilm (you've seen the WebJunk show, right?) and Google Video are doing the same thing, amongst others. CNet has one that even changes daily. Fun stuff.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 8:20 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


OC Slang of the Week

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Just had a cool-looking student come to the door shilling subscriptions to the Orange County Register. He was a super nice kid trying to raise money for his books. As I told him I wasn't interested in the service, twice he used "rugged" as an expression of sadness that I wasn't interested. Proper sentence usage: Oh dude, are you sure? That's rugged.

So now you can add that word to your vocabulary (next to "tight" or if you're old school "narly" - though I heard that may be making a comeback, too) and look cool in front of your students. Or dorky in front of other youth workers. Actually, dorky in front of your students, too.

You're 34. THAT's rugged.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 8:15 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Home Sweet Orange County

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Madeit back home safe and spending time with the family today. Whew - been a long couple of weeks. Up today I'm NOT going to work (heeding our own instruction to protect family time, have margin and be balanced) and spending time with the kids and Angela.

We're going to the Mission Viejo Lake Association to get our lake membership access, and then picking up my car from the repair shop. Some ball bearing issues to the tune of $400. Lovely. Anyhow, not much going on in the blog today, just happy to be HOME.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:14 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Tagging Air Force One

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Check out this video

Interesting idea, don't necessarily agree and/or care about what he says about graffiti as a legitimate art form. However, very cool viral video. Tagging Air Force One.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:12 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Does Audioblogger Even Work?

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

this is an audio post - click to play

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 3:25 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


View from the Space Needle

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Here's the view from the top of the Space Needle last night. Pretty sweet! Headed home in just a few hours - here goes!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:34 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Powerbar Update

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Powerbar update - with just 2 hours left before we head to the airport, I'm happy to report I've managed to score 10 nutritional bars during the conference. Keep in mind there was only 2 breaks that offered these Powerbars, which meant taking 4 at one break and 6 yesterday morning. That's double digits, people!

And no thanks to Andy, who didn't help one bit and goes to bed at 8:15 each night, too.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:46 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


The Way the Cookie Crumbles

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

OK, so I tried a bit of an experiment today. It really started more as a funny bit, but then turned into something great.

When we checked in to the Paramount, I asked the front desk guy if they had any cookies. He said they didn't and when we went upstairs. I've then proceeded in asking the same question of whoever was at the front desk.

"Do you have any cookies?"

Over and over again for the past 30 hours - whenever we were in the lobby we asked. Andy and I alternated, and I even asked complete strangers to get into the act. Coming down the elevator, I asked a guy to again mention cookies at the front desk. I wondered if we asked enough if someone would step up and get some cookies for us without us really ever asking or expecting it.
Then it happened. When I asked last night, the guy looked at me, and said, "Sure!" He stepped into the back and grabbed me a small bag of freshly-baked Otis Spunkmeyer cookies. "Here you go," he said. Amazing.

I'm not sure what all of that means, but it was pretty stinkin' sweet.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:31 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Coke Blak

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

I heard that Coke Blak came out today, and since we were in the capital of coffee it seemed only right to try it here. What is it, you ask? How about a highly-caffinated Coca-Cola espresso drink. It only comes in glass bottles and released to the market this week.

Pretty good. I would clasify it as "mysterious" if you pressed me for a description. You're not sure what to expect, so you're greeted with a traditional Coke flavor with a coffee chaser.

You've got to try it today! $1.99 whereever Coke is sold.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:28 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Ice Age 2

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

There's this lady chewing ice during this session. I wish I was dead.

There's nothing less exciting to me than someone chewing ice. I'm pretty sure it's my pet peeve. Yep, it is. During the whole session at random intervals she took mouthfuls of water and then crunched the included ice. If that was me up there presenting, I would ask her to leave and/or make fun of her from up front. The poor presenter - argh!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:30 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Andy Won't Eat Squid

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

We just had appetizers while brainstorming The Greatest Website Ever Made, as we'll call the Winter SYM site from now on. Maybe an appreviation like TGWEM: SYM or something like that. Man, that's a big abbreviation.

Anyhow, the appetizer was calamari (insert any Kelly Pickler reference you want here) and there was a few ounces of tentacles included, too. Here's a shot of Andy with one of them. Gotta love Seattle!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 4:57 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


My personal goal for this conference

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

I'm trying to get as many Power Bars as possible at this conference. So far I've got 4 from breakfast alone. If I get to double digits, even I will be impressed. Wish me luck!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 4:48 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


A hot cookiee and flying first class

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

So Andy and I were messing around with the people at the ticketing counter at John Wayne yesterday, and happened to mention to the agent that we would love an upgrade to first class.

After lots of banter and a very rude supervisor, and at least getting something (a non-stop to Seattle), we felt like all hope was lost for the free upgrade to the big league. Upon further review, as we sat in 12C and 12D, the sympathetic agent actually boarded the plan and assisted the two yahoos to first class on the American Airlines flight. That's right, those yahoos were Andy and I.

She was a Fred (see my book review from earlier today).

Amazing! Did you know the seats in 1st class recline to something approximately as comfortable as a year-old futon? And the beverages come fast, furious and FREE? Don't get me started on the butter pretzels! Even the conversation in first class is better! I sat next to a guy from Microsoft and the guy next to Andy owned like a billion-dollar matress pad company. That guy was on a personal mission to visit every country in the world, and I'd be happy just to try every drink at Starbucks before I die.

Thanks for making my very first 1st class flight amazing, stranger lady.

I don't even know her name - but I guarantee I'll find it out, send her something AND fly on American again soon. So great. Did you know that the seats are as big as a small love seat? Did you know you're assigned 1 stewardess for every 12 passengers? Did you know they bake a fresh cookie (double-chocolate) when you take off? Ah, the little luxuries of life that have avoided me for so long. My body was made for first class, the buffet has no mercy.

I'll probably never be able to fly up front again, but I'm very excited for my first time last night. What a great experience!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 4:38 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Fred Factor Book Review

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Kerry, the Community to Crowd pastor here at Saddleback Church, gave all of the venue pastors a new book last week - The Fred Factor.

It's an easy read - I read it on the flight back from Dallas last week, maybe 50 pages. Basically it is the story of a USPS worker who went the extra mile for the author. It is about how your job, no matter how mundane it is or may appear on the surface, is actually critical to the success of the organization. And how your spirit and effort to go the extra mile makes all of the difference. The Postal Service doesn't even know how good of a job Fred is doing, but the people on his route do.

What are you doing that is going the extra mile for your customers, for the people of your church, for a member of your family? Can you think of many times when you went WAY beyond expectation? For a parent? A student? For your spouse?

Good learnings for me never to do "just enough" to get by or stay under the radar.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 3:58 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


PDYM Videos: The History of Youth Ministry

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

If you attended PDYM this year you saw several funny video series we produced for the conference. Here's a few more of the videos for you to download and watch - these are the 4 episodes of "The History of Youth Ministry" which got some great laughs. If you missed "The Church Office" than click here now. Enjoy!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:22 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Fields Teaches the Weekend

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Pastor Rick lost his voice on Friday so Doug Fields had to come in and pinch hit for our Workplace series at Saddleback Church. Rick got him good in the video introduction, and there was plenty of shots back and forth that made everyone really laugh. Good stuff, I love banter between pastors!

Anyhow, this week was particularly good, I was really proud of Fields. Here's why: at Saddleback we always teach about failure stories, and this week he had some really great ones. Sometimes I wonder if he screws up just to make a good illustration! Hahahha ... the honesty and transparency from him made the service really excellent. So many of us fail and then cover it up, or pretend we're perfect. The audience knows that isn't true, so it distracts from receiving the message.

Bottom line: if you're not using a failure story a week, you're missing a key ingredient in connecting with your audience.

I haven't been this excited about a series since the G-rated kids one this summer. Good stuff!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:05 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Off to Seattle

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Andy and I are leaving tonight for for Seattle via the city of San Francisco. Should be fun, off to a Digital River website conference to make cool stuff happen on the internet. The dress is business casual, so I think I need a whole new wardrobe. I kinda like the relaxed look - ie Rainbows and camo shorts. Oh well, this'll be a good change.

Today we hung out as a family, enjoying some Weinershnitzel, calling mom for her birthday and running various errands. The kids are down for a nap now, time to pack and get ready for another trip. Should be fun! I'll probably blog throughout, including various learnings and such as well. See you around!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:01 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Orange County Robbery

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

Nothing worst than a good friend getting robbed to complete a weekend. Matt from our creative team lost his iPod, work computer and more in a car break-in at Fudruckers. Life in the real OC ...

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:58 PM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


PDYM Videos: The Church Office

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

If you attended PDYM this year you saw several funny video series we produced for the conference. Up today is a few of the videos for you to download and watch - the first is 2 episodes of "The Church Office" which got some great laughs. Enjoy!

Church Office Episode 1

Church Office Episode 2


JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:45 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!


Pictures from Michigan

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to DownloadYouthMinistry.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!

I was just sent a few pictures of some friends from Michigan. Thought you might enjoy seeing them. They are wonderful people that I care for very much - the best volunteers in the world! Jake and Andrea now go to Granger Community Church, Josh and April go to Lawton Mennonite Church. Sounds like the families are doing well!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:00 AM |

SimplyJosh.com has now moved to MoreThanDodgeball.com - follow this link to visit the new site with new posts everyday!