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From God to Sex on the Radio

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Just saw this interesting news piece in USA Today. Thought a link was in order:
KFYE-FM hasn't budged from the Fresno-area dial, but it's about as far as you can get from the Christian music, sermons and Bible stories it was broadcasting until about a week ago. Now it calls itself "Porn Radio" — "all sex radio, all the time," with a suggestion that people under 21 not listen.

Songs with little in common except suggestive titles and lyrics fill the playlist, including "Why Don't We Do It in the Road" by The Beatles, "Sexual Healing" by Marvin Gaye and "Nasty" by Janet Jackson. Tamer songs are heated up by adding recorded moans and groans.

The change, made after the station was sold this month, was met with several non-sexual groans from some residents.
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 4:59 PM |

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New SYM Website Starts to Take Form

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Spent the better part of today in design meetings for the 2007-2010 Simply Youth Ministry website. I'm thinking this is going to be big, a robust online community with the best resources and freebies around. To help with this task, we hung out with Pat from Normalcy Design in preparation for our big upgrade and launch this winter. He's about the coolest cat on the planet, and he's going to take this thing from my sad wireframe drawing and scribbles to absolute magic.

Anyhow, that's how I spent most my day. That and getting ready for a huge digital download sale starting tomorrow on SYM. No rest for the wicked!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 4:09 PM |

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2 Movies Over the Weekend

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I haven't had one of those "I have nothing to show for this weekend" type of a weekends in a long time. This was finally one of them!

Of course, that doesn't count if you include a pile of serious quality time with the family and a few services at Saddleback. But, I didn't work on any projects, stayed far away from email and basically shut myself off from getting anything productive done except investing in relationships and relaxing.

And I did watch a couple of movies.

The first of which was Lady in the Water, which Matt dragged me to on Friday. Not only was the storytelling weak and uninspired, the visuals left me really wanting more. When they wanted to explain part of the story, a character just talked for 3 minutes about what would happen next - then you watched it on screen. Then when that was over he got up for 3 minutes and talked about what would happen next, then you watched it. Repeat and rinse a few more times and that's the movie.

Aside from a few neat angles it was totally lame, I'm just glad I didn't have to pay for the ticket (Thanks, McGill). Read Treece's thoughts if you think there's anything redeemable there, because I sure didn't. C-

The second movie was My Super Ex-Girlfriend, which I saw tonight with the Fields' family. Talk about a bomb - terrible plot, horrible special effects and the worst acting since Justin Met Kelly. Put that quote on the trailer! I didn't know if I should be embarrased more for Uma Thurman for being in the movie, or me for being in the movie theater! The only redeeming quality is that I got to see the train wreck with friends, so you can talk about how bad it was forever and ever. All bad movies from now until I die will be compared to this one.

Though I did like the guy from The Office being in it. Anyhow, super-lame, I'm again just glad I didn't have to pay for the ticket (Thanks, Fields). Allison agrees on how lame it was. D-

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:14 AM |

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Adventure Management Series Ends

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Another great Saddleback weekend in the can - Fields finished up his 3-week series called "Adventure Management" on the topic of relationships. At the beginning of the series people used a response card to suggest possible topics where they needed some direction or help, so we had conflict, busyness and then ended with relationships tonight. The part that spoke to me the most was on familiar strangers, the concept of being so shallow with people and never getting to the heart of the matter - and how that is a fraction of how God called us to live in community with the biblical "one anothers." Great stuff, and anytime we use Peter as an example (because I think I resemble him sometimes) I'm excited!

Passion had mid-80s tonight, we've got some fun things planned in the coming weeks for our little community as well - should be fun! God is doing some great things, many children accepted Christ this week at the Summer Spectacular, and the Gospel was clear as ever from the platform this weekend as well.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:07 AM |

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Stephen Wears Girls' Clothes

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Apparently, Wildside intern Stephen likes girls clothes. OK, it's not quite that dramatic, but he is wrestling with a particular piece of clothing in his closet that he isn't sure is for a man or a woman. It zips up on the opposite side, which in my mind that clearly means it's a woman's piece of clothing or possibly French. Maybe you could surf over to his site and leave him a comment to help him out?

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:59 AM |

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Alanna Blogs on Emotional Purity

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Alanna has some great thoughts on purity this weekend, I would typically just link to my friends' posts during the weekly roundup, but this one feels bigger than that. With over 10 years in the trenches in youth ministry, the subject she is writing about always comes up - as youth workers we're good at talking to students about physical purity, but we rarely talk about the emotional attachment and the incredible loss after a breakup. She's got some great thoughts on the subject you should check out and/or plagarize during your next series or retreat. Here's a clip:
Growing up in church, I've heard about purtiy...a lot. About every year or so we go through at least one sex series and talk about "how far is too far" and how to have a "pure" relationship. All these things are very important, and extremely relevant to people's lives. However, I strongly feel that we overlook a HUGE part of purity that I feel is just as important as physical purity...and that is emotional purity. I see it all the time...two people start dating...they've grown up in church...they've had purity engrained into their minds...they know how far they're supposed to go. They wait and wait and wait to kiss...again...all good things. But...instead of making out...they spend their time talking for hours and sharing all about their hurts and struggles, family problems, past relationships...they become best friends...learn to trust each other, they express their love for each other, spend all their time together, they know each other inside and out...they get close with each others family, and soon learn to depend on each other as a support and refuge for lifes struggles...and then...it ends.

Now, they not only have to deal with the loss of a boyfriend...but also the loss of a best friend...a family, a support, counselor, etc. They may not have given themselves away physically...but emotionally...they've given everything. They are left broken and confused..."I thought it would last forever". This is because they never knew what emotional purity was all about.
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:50 AM |

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YS Marko Gets Shuffled

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Treece has posted his latest Friday edition of Shuffle Up and Deal, this time letting us know the first five songs that came on random on Marko's iPod. Check 'em out - a little more tame than I expected, I have to admit!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:17 AM |

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Great Stuff from Blog Friends

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Another Friday, another edition of highlights from my friends' blogs. Here's a quick list of some of the more memorable ones. Check 'em out.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:01 AM |

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Beat Sa'kred 21-8

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The guys over at sa'kred put up a great match tonight in a battle of the crosstown softball rivals, but we managed to take them 21-8. If you haven't checked out their church, it's a cool chuch in the area reaching the next generation. Great group of guys, good times.
At sa'kred we desire to be a growing community of people who believe that our faith should be authentic, personal, exciting and relevant. We value doing life and sharing life together. We are compelled to helping each other discover that our life matters to God and that we are His sa'kred children.

Our regular Sunday Morning gatherings start at 10:00 am or close to, but since we know that God doesn't just work on weekends, we have a variety of midweek small groups and we would like to encourage you to get plugged in at sa'kred by connecting with others during the week.
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:16 PM |

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Met Chris Collinsworth in Laguna Beach

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Funny story ... this guy and his daughter were walking the beach yesterday in Laguna where my family and I were enjoying a nice evening off with the family. He smiled at our kids running in and out of the waves when he walked by us the first time, and then on the way back mentioned how cute they were and gave us a nice smile.

Only later did I realize that it was Fox Sports announcer and famous football star Chris Collinsworth. Cool ... my only wish is that I had turned on my "radio voice" in the long shot of being discovered for sports play-by-play.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:28 PM |

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Google Searches That Lead Here

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Here's volume 3 of the Google searches that have led people to my blog. If you're new or curious, here's Volume 1 and Volume 2, too. There's some interesting ones, then I'll also post a list of ones that I wish led people here, too. Enjoy!

Actual Google searches
PDYM webcam
shaun blakeney saddleback
marc woodson
Greg Steir Willow Creek
dwight schrute's speech
ryans red carpet challenge
Maranatha ed horn
scott schwanbeck ign
PDYM Youth Ministry Conference Video
History of Youth Ministry Simply Youth Ministry
simply youth ministries blog
josh griffin
The history of youth ministry saddleback
summer spectacular saddleback church
"pass it on" "helping hurting kids"

Google searches I wish led here
surfing Jesus
leaders are learners
youth ministry blog
why can't christians be normal
grarls barkley crazy
youth pastor blog
religion and spirituality
are all christians nuts
a verse a day keeps the demons away
empire strikes back was the best
wienerschnitzel

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:16 AM |

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Take Me Home, Country Road

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This guy named Brian sent me an email before Andy and I's trip to Colorado. At least, that's what I think his name was. Yeah ... Ryan ... Dirk ... Wesley. Something like that.

Anyhow, he seemed like this nice dude (read: stalker / engineer) that listened to the SYM Podcast and wanted to know if we wanted to break bread together. I never want to let anyone down and always have a difficult time saying no to bread, so of course said yes.

By the time we could connect, we were on our way to the airport and did a "drive-by hello." If we're in your state soon and you want to do the same, it was really a blast and we should. Maybe if you'll be at YS this fall? So fun. Anyhow, here's a clip from his account of the incident:

I finally got a call from him a few minutes later, saying they just got done and were on their way down. Apparently since they were running late, Andy was getting all worried about missing their flight, and would only allow them to stop for 4min. So Josh's plan was to grab two diet cokes, slap me a high five, snap a picture and head off to the airport.

Thinking ahead, I went and had the cokes ready for them, and at around 4:00pm I met them in the Heidi's Deli parking lot with two diet cokes ready on the top of my car, as they came speeding in nearly hitting an old women. (just kidding about the old lady, but if there was one, Andy probably would have hit her in his panic).

So in what seemed to be about 5 min (and it probably literally was) Josh jumps out of this little white car, we shake hands and give a quick hug with other hand. Immediately Josh whips out his camera, tosses it to Andy who has a very worried look on his face about the plane, and we take our Kodak moment together. Then we
switch and I take one with Andy. I then ran to my green Saturn and grabbed my One Minute Bible curriculum and told them they had to sign it from themselves, and also sign it as if they were Doug. (I might put it on eBay later, just kidding) Then we said our good byes and they were off in a hurry drinking their Diet Pepsi's.

Head there for more of the story - I've included a few pics of the event in this post, too. And I hear his wife makes a mean chicken enchilada, so rest assured we'll be back, and with time to stay for dinner. Fun to meet you!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:28 PM |

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In My Xbox 360

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Just finished Tomb Raider for my 360, it sure was a solid game. There's always been some controversy around the series because the lead character is somewhat of a sex symbol, and this was my first exposure to the long-standing series. I can see why people play the game, not just because Lara is attractive but because it is really fun.

There's an element of adventure, puzzle, racer and shooter all wrapped into one, which typically doesn't work but for some reason really does here. Sometimes the puzzles were a bit too difficult, the bosses too tough and the racing got repetitive, but I'm impressed. It was a good 7 hours of playtime then back on GameFly. A-

Next game in my 360 starting tonight? FarCry.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:19 PM |

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Andy is Cheap

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So we went to Colorado the other day, Andy was in charge of our travel arrangements. He booked us on a flight so early in the morning we had to leave at 5:15 AM, then when we got to Colorado we got a luxury Chevy Aveo to travel in.

Have you seen this car? Midgets are cramped for space in this thing. It has almost 6 square feet of passenger space, and my carry on actually fit into the trunk with a little coaxing. I'm telling you, I'd rather be sitting with a fat guy on the airplane than being in that car. Actually, I am that fat guy on the airplane, but that's another post altogether I suppose.

All this to say I think perhaps I should be in charge of our ministry's travel arrangements from now on, I'm not sure Andy is up to the task. Thoughts about the car?

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:10 PM |

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Jedis and Jesus

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I love Jesus. I love Jedi. But is this a good idea? The wierd thing is, I strangely want to order one.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:25 PM |

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My Dad is the Greatest

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I met my dad for dinner at the Little America truck stop in Cheyenne, Wyoming.

I have to tell you, he's a miracle. Tonight he was full of life again, walking like it was no big deal, being the funny guy with lots of great comebacks and quips, being a tour guide for Andy and I for the airforce base and Frontier Days. We ate steaks, made fun of cowboys and laughed for more than 3 hours. Then he drove the 2 1/2 hours back home. That means he drove 5 hours to spend 3 with me.

But that's just the way he is.

This is a bigger deal than just giving him an excuse to listen to a few books on tape on the open road. Even as little as a year ago, the man was practically a cripple. Just three years ago he was in a wheelchair. But he's back with a force, and I love it.

He brought a pennant for my boys to hang on the garage wall. He smiled like I haven't seen him in a long time. He cared for our life situations and continually focused me back to God. I don't know, it was like ... well, he was never gone or anything ... but he's back.

There's a passion for the people in his church as a pastor, there's a passion for his community as a judge, there's passion for his wife as a husband. And most importantly, there's a passion for his family as a dad.

I love my dad more than anyone else in the world (just kidding, mom). He's the single most influential person in my life, if anything good comes of it it can be attributed to God and him. I've been given a gift of the most godly, loving parents in the world, an honor which so many aren't priviledged to have.

I just wanted you ... and him ... to know that. Love you, dad.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:55 PM |

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Youth Worker Training on the Go

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New product up on Simply Youth Ministry tonight, and at a fiercely deep discount, too. Just finished uploading the images and copy for a cool new youth leader resource that puts lots of great handouts, email copy and CDs into the hands of your volunteers. Click the image above if you want to see Youth Worker Training on the Go, it's in stock and ready to fire.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:44 PM |

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No Podcast Yet ...

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Because Andy and I were gone all day, don't be looking for a new SYM podcast in the near future. We'll probably shoot one with the gang on Thursday maybe, so by week's end we'll be back in the game for sure. I'm telling you - getting the four of us together at once is difficult these days! And with Fields' going to Kenya, too, this summer schedule is going to be crazy, I can feel it already.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:39 PM |

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Quick Trip to Colorado

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Did another one of those quick longest-day-ever trips to Colorado today for some meetings up at Group Publishing at noon. Love that place - such good people and great youth worker resources, too. Also ran up to Wyoming to meet my dad for steak at Little America. It was a great time hanging out with him - more about that later tonight!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:30 PM |

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Selling My Baby

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click on car for blue book value

OK ... after some long evaluation of our finances and the awful cost of living here in California, not to mention the rising cost of gas (yeah, it's down to $3.39!) ... shoot, we'll, the Griffin's are "downsizing" to one car. And unfortunately, we're going to have to stick with the mini-van.

Soon I'll be listing my sweet 2002 Chrysler Sebring convertible and try to get some cash out of it to reduce some monthly bills. It just looks like we've been limping along on bandaids for a while while we really need surgery.

Ever feel that way? Sigh. Oh well, I think it's the right thing to do - this is one of the sacrifices we have to make for our family to work the way we want it to. It's just hard letting such a fun car go. Oh well!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 7:40 PM |

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Ryan's Red Carpet Challenge

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I want to do this Red Carpet Challenge thing with Ryan Seacrest. Wouldn't it be fun to be a red carpet co-host at the Emmys? I don't think I have a shot at it, but that doesn't mean I'm not willing to give it one. I'll post my submission video when I get it done.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:39 AM |

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Awesome Weekend at Saddleback

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Just coming off another great weekend here at the church. Fields taught week 2 of the Adventure Management series on the topic of busyness and time management. There were some great learnings and humor - it was an awesome service. Sarah Kelly was the guest musical artist this weekend, it was cool to meet her backstage, too.

So a great weekend, I think the part that spoke to me the most was on how busyness leads to a superficial faith and a compromise of morality. The grey areas become as inviting as black and white, and we fall or stay shallow. God, from the very beginning of creation, made us in need of a rest.
Remember to observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. Six days a week are set apart for your daily duties and regular work, but the seventh day is a day of rest dedicated to the Lord your God….For in six days the Lord made the heavens, the earth, the sea, and everything in them; then he rested on the seventh day. That is why the Lord blessed the Sabbath day and set it apart as holy. Exodus 20:8-11 (NLT)
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:22 AM |

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Funny Bulletin Cameo

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Happened to notice this weekend's program at Saddleback had a small reference to Star Wars on it. Made my day, especially if you know my Star Wars history. They were going for a Star Wars adventure movie type poster on the program, I guess? Either way, a very cool cameo.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:06 AM |

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My Dad is Funny

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My mom's been here in California for a week spending time at a conference on natural health and chillin' with the grandkids. He sent me this hilarious email last night after picking mom up at the airport after she flew home yesterday. My response is below, too ... he's SO funny.
From: Dr Bob Griffin
Sent: Sunday, July 23, 2006 11:12
RE: Last few days with Mom

Mom arrived safely at 10:20 pm. Tired out by those grandkids, but couldn’t stop talking about how great it was.

And me? Hey, she satisfied me immediately. IN THE AIRPORT! What an experience. I saw her walking in thru security and started to drool and could hardly WAIT to get my arms around . . . the box of KRISPY KREME’s Josh had sent from California.

And oh, yeah, as I recall, I think I kissed her, too.

Pops

My response:

From: Josh Griffin
Sent: Sun 7/23/2006 11:48
Subject: RE: Last few days with Mom

Best. Email. Ever.

We’re laughing (and grossed out) out
loud.
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 7:30 AM |

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Google Searches That Lead Here: Vol 2

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Here's volume 2 in my series entitled, Google Searches That Lead Here (volume 1 here). Some interesting ones in this week's lineup - I promise these are actual Google words that people used to discover this site for the first time. At the end I'll put up a few I wish people could use to get here, that perhaps in the future the search engine will pick up:

Actual search words
austin carty saddleback
ferarri cars movie
josh griffin
vince beresford california church
worship from a-z saddleback
"rick warren" AND "conference video" 2006
"history of youth ministry vol 1"
united methodist
simply youth ministry blog
chic fil a marriage counseling
gears of war faceplate
minus media rick warren
"something like silas" forestry
Shaun Blakeney

...there's was even one visitor from a private message in the fundamental forums.

Ones that I wish led people here
dog the bounty hunter rocks
can a christian go to movies?
talk like a pirate day
you have a face for radio
Maranatha Baptist Bible College
Rick Warren's blog
short shorts
filled with the spirit
ninjas rule

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 6:44 AM |

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Good Friend Passing

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You don't know him like I do, but his story is still one you should read.

Ed Horn was a classmate of mine at bible school back in a day. He was the speciman of health and fitness, literally his body could not have been more pure. He married one of my best college friends' sister, so there's always been a connection. Last year, doctor's discovered he had lymphoma.

Read his story ... the journey is almost over.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:43 PM |

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Father of the Bride Speech

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This weekend we went to a great wedding for some friends of ours, and my wife and I got a chance to spend some nice time together celebrating our 10 years together, too.

It was the first real wedding since our daughter was born, so when the father of the bride came up to give his toast about his baby daughter, it struck a new chord deep inside me. As he spoke of how he was changing her diaper what seemed like yesterday, I was thinking I was changing my daughter's diaper yesterday. As he spoke of all of the memories they had in his reflection, I thought of how we were making those memories today.

So I had a thought ... maybe every wedding I go to from now until my daughters I'll write her a short note. At the end of the next 20-25 marriages, I think I'll have a pretty good speech written. Not sure how it will all work out, but hopefully it will become one of the most meaningful moments in our relationship.

Maybe this will be the opening to the speech ...

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:11 PM |

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Ah yes ... Christian Parody

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I enjoy reading parody of the Christian world.

It helps me 1) get a fresh perspective on what people outside of faith think about Christians, b) learn what language non-Christians are tired of hearing, c) confront the image we are sending a very observant community, and d) laugh at some of the stupid things we might say and do. Some of it can be biting, frightening or even horrifying ... so caution is in order. I'm not saying this is for everyone, but it is certainly for me.

Here's a clip from this month's issue of the Onion, an article on someone's regret of being born-again.

Jesus must totally hate me.

I know that His yoke is easy and His burden light, but I can't help feeling that I'm a big part of that burden. After all, the New Testament was written a couple thousand years before any of the Apostles came across the likes of me. In my Bible reading, I don't recall Him ever saying, "Blessed are the boring, the losers, the wasters of space." I know my Scripture, and I know that Jesus never said anything about the dumbasses inheriting the earth. Yeah, there's only one set of footprints in the sand, and they belong to Jesus—bolting away from me at top speed.

Also there's an article on a Save-A-Child sponsor that withheld his monthly $18 contribution from his Zimbabwean child, Mtumbe Chigumbura, in order to teach him a lesson in responsibility.

Read at your own risk ... also try Lark News or Sacred Sandwich if you want some Christians poking fun at themselves, too.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 8:47 PM |

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The Microsoft Zune

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Hold on to your iPods everyone (Nano for me), I just read in WiRED that Microsoft is readying it's new portable entertainment device. As much as I love Windows XP and my Xbox 360, this is going to be a tough hill to climb. iTunes is pretty unstoppable right now ... but I'm sure someone said that about Nintendo, too, and look where they are. Atari? K-Mart? The big polka worship trend? All drown in the same boat. Here's a clip of the news.
Microsoft said on Friday it plans to release a new music and entertainment player and accompanying software under the "Zune" brand this year, in a belated attempt to challenge the dominance of Apple Computer's iPod player.

Microsoft confirmed the plans for an entertainment device and software in a statement after touting those products to record companies in recent months.

The world's largest software maker faces an uphill climb in closing the gap on Apple's iPod media player and iTunes Music Store, the runaway leaders in their respective areas.

Now if it could play games ... so like a PSP/iPod hybrid ... well, then ...

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:29 PM |

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Dwight Schrute's Lost Battlestar

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Oh wow. Funniest thing I've read in a long time. Check out Dwight Schrute's (The Office) latest update to his blog. Here's a clip:

WHAT WOULD HAPPEN IF THE CAST OF BATTLESTAR GALACTICA CRASH LANDED ON THE ‘LOST’ ISLAND???!!!

First of all, they would have lasers. Adama would quickly secure the hatch for his crew. The survivors of the Oceanic flight 815 would be herded up like little children and inspected like cattle.

“Could these people actually be Cylons!” Starbuck would be thinking to herself. Then she would think, “That one who calls himself Sawyer is pretty hot. I wonder what he would look like swimming in just his jeans.”

Starbuck would take Sawyer on a reconnoiter of the island and they would visit the swimming hole and start necking. And then Kate and Apollo would stumble upon them and they would all be getting it on when a huge crashing would come through the jungle and one of those huge unseen monsters would tower above them (the monsters that disappeared after episode 8 of season 1) and they would be screaming.

AHHHHH!!!!

Cut to commercial.


There's plenty more there, follow the link!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:13 PM |

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Blog Friends Roundup

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Here's this week's edition of blog friends roundup - a post where I highlight what's going on in my friends' lives and alert you to some posts you really shouldn't miss.
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:36 AM |

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Uncle Spencer's Car

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My uncle Spencer Bohren is a jazz musician from Louisiana. He's had this '55 Chevy Bel-Air since, well forever, I guess. I think it just crossed 900,000 miles. Well, it was destroyed in Hurricane Katrina, and he's having it restored as a symbol of American willpower and determiniation. The only problem is that his livelihood is in jeopardy and their house was destroyed as well. I'm sure the life of a jazz musician is pretty humble already (kinda like being a pastor, haha) so to have this taken away must have been a really hard knock.

Anyhow, I wanted to post a clip from his site and mention that he's taking donations - he's several thousands of dollars into raising the $14,000 needed to make it perfect again. Either way it's a great story to read ... click on the picture for the full story:

On the morning of August 29th, Hurricane Katrina visited New Orleans and left in her wake a disaster of biblical proportions. New Orleans East was one of the hardest-hit areas, and we naturally assumed that the Chevy was lost.

And make no mistake, the Chevy has indeed sustained considerable water damage. Tevis, however, once I finally managed to track him down, refused to let it go. His
family's house had ten feet of water in it for two weeks; his wife and kids are evacuated indefinitely to Jackson, Mississippi; most of his tools, equipment and
office are ruined; his shop is seriously damaged, and still, he refuses to let the Chevy go.

When I say, "My house is ruined and I have no money to spend on the Chevy," he says, "You already paid me."

I say, "That was before the hurricane added all this water and mud into the equation."

He says, "But I made a promise."

I say, "I'm letting you off the hook." He gets frustrated and replies, "That car can be fixed!

Read the rest here.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:01 PM |

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Dog the Bounty Hunter

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Probably our favorite show during the hiatus of 24, Lost and American Idol is Dog the Bounty Hunter. I caught it a while ago, but it didn't hook me in - now I can't be stopped. It's in reruns right now, but since I hadn't seen any of the shows yet we're watching 2-3 a night. Argh!

My favorite part of it is that he's a Christian. He's still struggling though life like all of us, but his faith plays a big part on it. I think he might take some criticism because he smokes like a chimney and swears like a sailor, but he's on the journey, and I respect that.

It's a great show ... if you're looking for something until the new season arrives, check this out. Comments welcome!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:25 PM |

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World Jump Day

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You guys all participated in World Jump Day, right? If you didn't ... you contributed to global warming. Unless you have a Pruis, then you're off the hook. The only jumping I did today was off my lazy boy to turn the air conditioner on high.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:36 PM |

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Watch the Webcam

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Be sure to check out the Simply webcam tomorrow for an interesting preview of the 06-07 resource catalog. I don't want to spill all of the beans, but there's some pretty cool stuff happening through the lens of that camera and you can check it out tomorrow from 9-4 Pacific Time.

If you happened to peak in today, you would have seen intern Matt painting the wall a very interesting way. OK, enough clues - check it out when you get a break.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:20 PM |

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New SYM Resources Online

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Spent the bulk of the day uploading new products to the Simply website. Not real sexy, but someone's got to do it. Here's a quick list of the newbies for sale, with tons more stuff on the way in the next 30 days:

Instant Skits
Alter 4
Alter Bundle 1-4
Case for a Creator
Case for a Creator 10-pack

Also we put into motion a new customer service bar that will remind people of the toll-free number, live online help and order tracking. Little known fact about Simply - most resources that are ordered are processed same day and shipped immediately. It doesn't always happen, but it does the majority of the time.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 8:12 PM |

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YouTube and The Office Contest

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Dude! You've got to check this out! Just discovered it tonight, and it ends tomorrow! Create your own 20-second Office promo and win! Argh ... so little time! Leigh? Jake?

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:17 AM |

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Your Website is Old After 36 Hours

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If you don't update your website every 36 hours, you might as well not have one. Internet visitors consider a site "out of date" or "irrelevant" after that time period according to a NY Times piece this week. Good advice for bloggers, MySpacers or people who want traffic to their website. If you update it, they will come.

A new research paper seeks to answer a riddle for publishers, editors and even readers: when does new news become old news?

In the case of a news article on the Internet, the answer is surprisingly long: 36 hours on average, according to the paper, “The Dynamics of Information Access on the Web,” which appeared in the June issue of Physical Review E, the journal of the American Physical Society.

More precisely, 36 hours is the amount of time it takes for half of the total readership of an article to have read it, the paper found. The physicist who led the research, Albert-László Barabási of the University of Notre Dame, said that the paper’s conclusion should give journalists hope, even in the era of instant news. Dr. Barabási said that traditional ideas about the way people use the Internet would have led researchers to expect a much shorter half-life, more like two to four hours.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:12 PM |

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Podcast 24 is On the Server

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The podcast is alive and kicking - not sure if it's in iTunes yet and I know the main page isn't done, but here's some direct links if you just HAVE to have it.

Audio
listen to it now

Video
watch it now

Enjoy!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 5:14 PM |

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Angels 4, Indians 6

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Just got back from a great Angels game this afternoon with the kids. Was a treat to ditch work and spend time with the family. Difficult loss for the Halos, but hanging with Jake and my kids is always a good time.

The highlights:
Getting 4 tickets for free
Getting a free premium parking pass
Getting Jake to come help me watch the kids ... and the game, too
Sitting in nice enough seats they bring the food to you
Super nachos!
The kids being excited about the 7th inning - the song and the cotton candy
The kids asking me each inning what inning it was, every single inning until the 7th
Watching them dance and sing to "Take Me Out to the Ballgame"
Sticky hands
Watching them fall asleep on the way home, hands stuck to their faces

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 5:00 PM |

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No Arms, No Legs, No Worries

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The OC Register has an article about one of our speakers at the PDYM Student Leadership Conference last week. Pretty compelling stuff - what a night and what a story. Here's a clip:
At 15, Nick officially thanked God that he was alive. At 17, he gave his first talk to a prayer group. The requests to speak snowballed. And now, at 23, that's all he does. His nonprofit is called Life Without Limbs.

"'Hey, look. I've got no arms and legs, what are you complaining about?' That's not the message," he told the crowd at Leesa's house. "I'm not here to say I understand your pain."

His mission is encouraging people not to give up; being a living example that struggle leads to strength; and sometimes making people laugh. ("This boy came up to me and goes 'WHAT HAPPENED!?' I go, 'CIGARETTES!' I love to freak kids out.'")

Most of his travels are through Third World countries, places where people like him often are abandoned at birth, left to die.

Before the night was over, Leesa asked her 30 or so guests to gather around Nick in the living room and lay hands on him. Prayers were said.

"If you leave here without a hug, I'm going to run after you," he said. "And if you run fast, I'm gonna get someone to throw me at you."

The evening with Leesa led to an invitation to speak at a youth conference at Saddleback Church later in the week. Next Sunday he will speak at Mission Hills Church in Mission Viejo.

"It turns out having no arms and legs has gotten me into some doors I would not have been able to walk through."


JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:18 AM |

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Wasabi Peanut

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This is one of the students that came to the PDYM Student Leadership Conference. This is entitled "eating a wasabi peanut in the hotel room." Classic youth group antics after a long day of leading and learning. Funny.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:47 AM |

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Auction Online and SYM Podcast Filmed

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The SYM podcast is being digitized as we speak - look for it in iTunes and on the official website first thing in the morning. We've also got a new auction up on eBay with proceeds going to the Compassion goat fund. We managed to get an autographed playlist, a sampler CD and a new t-shirt from the band formerly known as Something Like Silas. Check it out!

Future of Forestry eBay auction for Compassion goats

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 5:31 PM |

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JC's Cafe

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Interesting idea I read about today in the Des Moines Register, talking about a fun and safe place for students to hang out under a Christian influence. Here's a clip of the article, if you want you can post reaction in the comments section below:
Kids looking for cool, Christian fun can find it at JC's Cafe, a newly remodeled youth center at Ankeny First United Methodist Church, 206 S.W. Walnut St.

Complete with a coffee/smoothie bar, the contemporary hangout has become a popular place for local teenagers to relax and unwind with their friends.

Thomas Frank, 15, of Ankeny said he comes to the center as often as he can to have fun and play the video games.

"I go to a different church than this," Thomas said, "but my brother told me about this place and it's really fun."

As a flashy music video by a contemporary Christian rock group played on a giant projection screen, Frank divided his time between the video game area and the pool table. "I know people here," he said. "When I'm not working I like to come here to hang out with friends and play pool."
Obviously this doesn't replace church by any means, but it sure looks like a safe, fun place to hang out after school. What a great place for conversations about Christ to unfold, discussion about life and an opportunity for people to hear about Jesus from a caring adult and their peers.

Dude, I want to hang out there!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 3:53 PM |

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Apple on a Stick

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Just finished a nice little thank you gift for my part in the student leadership conference last week. A Carmel, white chocolate butterfinger apple from Rocky Mountain Chocolate Company. Delicious! We just tackled a 1 1/2 hour debrief of the event, lots of positive comments and plenty of tweaks for next year. Gonna be great - July 10-13, 2007!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:51 PM |

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Swimsuit Season

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Funny.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:03 AM |

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Pirates 2 ... Stay Until the End of the Credits

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I'm SO bummed!

I just found out there's a short movie clip at the end of the Pirates 2 credits! Argh, the movie was long enough already so we were out of there, but the fate of a character is shown in the scene. Oh well - maybe on DVD or if someone else pays I might see it again. I hate it when I miss something like that.

I did manage to find a description of the clip online, so use your mouse to highlight below if you missed it, too!

After the credits there is a brief sequence showing the cannibals have now adopted the stowaway key-taunting dog from the first movie as their new chief.

Aaaarrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrgh!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 8:30 PM |

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Souplantation

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Took my mom to Souplantation for lunch today - it's a resturant they don't have in her home state of Wyoming. Looking at their map, it seems like they're only in a few states - maybe they're coming to a midwest near you. Well, their charm is 55 feet of fresh vegetable and salads, plus a bakery and soup bar. Not to mention the desserts! Not bad for $7.25. Fun day, eating healthy (bleah) California style.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 4:53 PM |

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Pirates 2 Review

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Well ... interesting film. I honestly think it's a mixed bag of bad, good and really amazing.

SPOILER ALERT!

Length: C
First off, the movie is way too long. By the time we get to the amazing spectacle of the last hour, we've been desensitized and the 'wow factor' is somewhat played out. The pacing is off in the first act, and the plot is somewhat confusing and some things are just overplayed too much. This film could easily have been 120 minutes. Instead, we're cruising past two and a half hours.

Ciematography: A
Great cinematography takes some of the pain of the long cut away. This film is sweeping, epic and visually stunning. Whew! But, it still can't save it outright and there's just not enough action sequences to keep me interested. But oh when they come, they're absolutely amazing - in the meantime I'm bummed by long setups and wayyyy to much story. This is a summer spectacular, kill me with the action, baby!

Acting: B+
Captain Jack Sparrow is now more feminine and drunk than ever - and sometimes it's over the top but he is a scene stealer. I love his pithy phrases, people were saying 'oh bugger' as soon as we left the theater. I did think that perhaps some of the funny moments were misplaced, or maybe that's Pirates charm and I just missed it. Kiera Knightly is sadly underused, not believeable as a paige boy stowaway and the love-triangle at the end utterly confused me. What? Isn't this whole thing because of Will Turner's love for her? Of course, she left her lover in the first film for him, so perhaps she's doing the same again. Most of the characters are pretty one-dimensional - so I'm hoping this is just setting up the 3rd film where we'll appreciate more nuances of the writing and characters.

Action Scenes: A
As I mentioned that are far too few, but truly stunning. Or maybe there are enough, it's just that the first 1.5 hours of the film don't contain any of them. Yes, that's it.

Visual effects: A
Industrial Light and Magic (of Star Wars fame) have really created some amazing special effects here. There are scores of fantastic digital characters, complete with the main villian of the film Davy Jones. This is some stunning stuff you've never seen before! I can only remember 2 scenes that looked somewhat fakey (both involving the Cracken, which had to have been the most difficult scene to make believable). GREAT work.

Sound effects: A
Great sound effects - I especially love the sound of Captain Davy's octopus beard. There's plenty to see and hear - it all fits nicely, well done.

Score: A
Sounded a bit Gladiator-esque, but I loved that film and score, too. It seemed to fit really well.

Overall: B-
Overall the film was great, just needed one more critical edit. More Kiera Knightly, more action and I'll be ready for Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End next summer.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 3:16 PM |

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Gears of War Excitement

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Whew ... just reading up on the latest news about Gears of War - this Fall's exclusive to the Xbox 360. Couldn't be more excited - you should be, too!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 3:09 PM |

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Samuel L. Jackson Voices God

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Check out this story about our man Samuel L. Jackson voicing God. He does have a great voice, just hopefully he won't swear.
Movie superstar SAMUEL L JACKSON will voice God in a new audio version of the Bible. The taped recording of the New Testament will feature many famous other black actors and musicians. Jackson was given the lead role because producers felt his deep, authorative voice was perfect for the role of God.
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:12 AM |

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Saddleback Weekend with Austin Carty

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Here's a shot of Austin Carty from Survivor: Exile Island and myself after the services this weekend. We ran out afterward and grabbed a bite to eat and saw Pirates of the Carribean 2 as well. Good stuff - full review of that film tomorrow. The weekend was really great - Fields taught on conflict in the new Adventure Management series in big church and did a great job. Passion was good - beautiful sunset to boot. A great weekend!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:59 PM |

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MySpace on My Space

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Couldn't remember if I'd mentioned this little space before or not. Not much to look at since I fully rather prefer the blog, but enjoy!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:08 AM |

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McGill Orders Coffee

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There's no shortage of great stories on my friend's blogs. Read about Matt's coffee ordering, Leigh's photo of the week, Allison's critical spirit, Lovato's student leadership pics, Natalie meets No Arms, No Limbs, Witt on armpit care, Kurt on the future of jr high ministry and Jensen on Pirates 2.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:58 PM |

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NBC's The Office Webisodes

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You guys all know the best show on TV, right? OK ... The Office may be tied with 24, Lost and American Idol ... new this week you can check out some exclusive summertime webisodes? Yup, they're sweet and you really need to check them out. Especially since the rest of the free world is in reruns.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:55 PM |

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A Celebration of Chipotle

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I was just thinking tonight about how much I like Chipotle. For those of you unaware of these fantastic burritos, you'll want to click the link above. I've had 2-3 of them this week, which is about average, I think.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:42 PM |

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Student Leadership Is Over

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Whew. I'm beat.

Here's some shots of the end of the conference. Jim Burns did a great job with Future of Forestry playing several songs into communion. We did a narrated skit involving bread formed into the body of Jesus that Thom over at Group sent over to Fields last week - it was SO great. If I can get permission, I'll post it here on the blog, too. We ended with a commissioning prayer and that was that. The end.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 4:54 PM |

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Saddleback is #2

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I'm not quite sure how they figure out the rankings, but Saddleback Church is now #2 on the most influential church list according to The Church Report. Here's a clip from Christian Post:

Willow Creek Community Church moved up as the number one most influential church in America in a list of the top 50 released early this week by The Church Report. Saddleback Church was moved to second.
Many of the top 50 influential churches were non-affiliated congregations, according to the report. Participants from more than 2,000 of the largest non-Catholic congregations listed the same top five as featured in the 2005 list, with Willow Creek taking the first position this time.

Willow Creek had its beginnings at a Palatine movie theater in 1975 with an initial turnout of 125 people. The church grew to 2,000 people in three years from whence they purchased 90 acres of farmland in South Barrington, Ill. There, 100 ministries have been launched and the property was expanded to 155 acres. More than 18,000 people attend weekly services now.

The next three churches featured in the 2006 list following the top two spots were (in order) North Point Community Church in Alpharetta, Ga.; Fellowship Church in Grapevine, Texas; and Lakewood Church in Houston, which is the oldest and largest congregations in the nation.
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 4:50 PM |

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Survivor Student Leadership

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Austin Carty just finished on stage today - a GREAT job talking about conflict and leadership. He was funny, had some great stories and was a really genuine person. Great for students to see someone on TV and then be so authentic in person!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:48 AM |

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This is It

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OK ... here we go. This is the last day of SLC - the whole thing ends at noon today. We've got Austin Carty from Survivor, Jim Burns from HomeWord, funny videos, a table game, killer songs with Future of Forestry, communion and the final challenge of committtment to student leadership with Doug Fieds. Full report from backstage when it's over. Whew, I slept hard last night. This is hard work!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 8:12 AM |

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Blogging the Conference

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Just realizing there's a few of us blogging this conference. Check out Mike Lovato's 5 posts and learnings at the conference, look for others soon. Great observations over there ...

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:16 PM |

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My Space on MySpace

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Taught a new workshop a couple of times today - I've been doing some research on MySpace, Friendster and Blogspot with an overarching theme of characteristics of a great website. I've really been pushing people to blog recently - I taught the Saddleback's intern staff a few weeks ago and now the PDYM Student Leader Conference. Here's three of the action steps of my talk today, and a few of the funny pics I manged to work in, too. Enjoy!
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:07 PM |

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Student Leadership: Day 3

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Amazing day ... we're running late in this last session of the day, but the programming team is the only one who knows it. The kids are having a blast - going old school with some Simon Says, Deal or No Deal and then Greg Stier. Soooo good ... here's a few pictures of the day. Enjoy!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:02 PM |

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Simply Blogging

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Tony over at Simply Strategic (no relation) has posted 49 strategies to be a better blogger. Good stuff there, don't miss it. Here's a few, head there immediately for the complete list:
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 8:58 PM |

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SYM Podcast is Almost Ready ...

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OK ... iTunes isn't updated yet (McGill had to teach today and I'm slammed with SLC) but we DID record one yesterday morning before the conference setup. I honestly think its one of our best ... see for yourself. If you just can't wait, here's some direct links that are live now:

VIDEO
http://content.simplyyouthministry.com/podcast/video/023_July11_06.mp4.zip

AUDIO
http://content.simplyyouthministry.com/podcast/023.mp3

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:32 PM |

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Student Leadership: Day 2

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Here's some pics from today's events so far ... we're outside doing student leader activities and problem solving - my favorite of which is the penny dive in the parking lot. The sessions have been great - Kenny Luck from Every Man, Matt McGill from Saddleback - good stuff. The next session deals with Invisible Children, Compassion International and more. Nooma this afternoon, Future of Forestry concert tonight - this is really a good time.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:09 PM |

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Is this Condescending?

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Interesting interaction I had today. If you got an email including the following words, what would you think?
Obviously I've removed the context and protected the sender, but my heart hurt a little bit when I got this. Am I just being a bit of a wuss? Am I right? Would love some comments giving some feedback.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:31 AM |

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Shoutout to Stephanie

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Allison righfully acknowledged Stephanie's amazing tech work yesterday during Day 1 of SLC. Unreal!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 8:26 AM |

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Goggle Searches That Lead Here

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I've been checking the referral pages of Google to see how people are finding my blog, and in the last week here's a few of the search terms that have led people here:

you're beautiful parody
rick warren korea
youth group pirate recipies
josh griffin blog
the hunt volvo
jake rutenbar
shaun blakeney

Here's a few things I would love if Google picked up that eventually led people here:

student leadership
youth ministry blog
more youth group pirate recipies
national kickball team captain
pdym blog
youth pastors gone wild
dodgeball champion
leaders are learners
hyundai world domination
is purpose driven a cult
sweet hair
every man's cattle

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 7:35 AM |

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Proverbs 11 Highlight

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The Lord detests people with crooked hearts, but he delights in those with integrity. (v.20)

God sees your motives, he knows the rest of the story before the story is even written. He knows the intent before it was sent. He knows the spite in your heart during an inauthentic conversation. God wants me to live honrably, with integrity - it even brings him delight. Now that's something that I want to do.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:34 PM |

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Student Leadership: Day 1

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Just wrapping up tonight's last session ... still working on my MySpace workshop for Thursday, and listening to Something Like Silas/Future of Forestry. Good times, nothing like blogging with some Wahoo's and the satisfaction of a great team pulling off the opening sessions. Fields was great, a new session called "the makeup of a leader" which focused on body parts being used for God's service. Solid stuff, a great night. Whew!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:18 PM |

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300 Posts

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This is the 300th post ... a milestone in the young blog's history. And I think a fitting time to repeat a message that we all need to hear from time to time

Don't believe everything you read on the internet.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 5:27 PM |

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SLC in Full Swing

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The PDYM Student Leadership Conference is rolling now!

We just finished setup and I've got 20 minutes to be at the leader's kickoff meeting and get this thing rolling! I'm super excited about some of our stage humor bits and some compelling video stuff, as well as some great tactile learning opportunities as well.

Got to go - the In-N-Out truck just pulled up - pictures tonight!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 5:25 PM |

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Another Funny Worship Conference Video

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posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:45 AM |

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30,000 People Hunting for the SUV

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By now you've heard about this genius promotion involving an SUV and Pirates of the Caribbean:
Maybe they are at their computers, treasure map in hand, dressed in swashbuckling garb with a sea-traveled parrot resting on their shoulder. Or, maybe not. Either way, nearly 30,000 Americans are now participating in Volvo Car Corporation's global, multi-media treasure hunt for a Volvo XC90 V8 that has been buried somewhere in the world.

The treasure hunt is part of Volvo Cars' official promotion of Disney's upcoming Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest. To participate, through July 11, individuals nationwide must visit their local Volvo retailer to pick up a free treasure map and start The Hunt process. Next, they register online at www.volvocars.us/thehunt and participate in an engaging and fun-filled adventure to solve a series of online clues and puzzles through July 12. Individuals registering now that The Hunt is in progress can catch up with other participants if they correctly answer the puzzles posted online as they are emailed to participants.

"This is a challenging treasure hunt, and to already have 30,000 people actively participating halfway through this first stage is exciting," said Anne Belec, president and chief executive officer of Volvo Cars of North America. "With this promotion, we sought a unique way to extend the Volvo brand and bring individuals into our retail facilities, and we're delighted with the results."
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 1:51 PM |

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Best World Cup Moment

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posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:10 AM |

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Working Weekend Comes to a Close

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Still cranking on Student Leadership tasks this weekend (the leader's guide to the week has been my main focus - it goes to the printer 1st thing in the AM), but managed to include some pretty good times today with the family. First we slept in today, a rarity in a house with 3.5 kids. I think the kids might have been playing with matches, but at least I got some of that much-needed sleep.

We've been planning on going swimming so went to the pool and spent most of the late morning there. Then we were off to watch World Cup with some friends, quick naps and then off to lead the Passion venue at Saddleback Church. Kenny Luck wrapped up the Worship from A to Z series this week, focusing on making worship throughout your life rather than an hour on Sunday morning.

Good weekend ... somewhat restful ... PDYM:SLC is here!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:08 PM |

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LOST at the Emmy Awards

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Ouch. The best show on TV, LOST, gets snubbed for Emmy Awards. According to USA Today:

As for the hope that the new procedures would open the Emmys up to new networks, the results are spotty at best. Denis Leary was justly rewarded for his incredible star turn in FX's Rescue Me, and thank goodness for that. But the change did nothing to help WB or UPN, or to stop the academy from once again snubbing Gilmore Girls and Veronica Mars — not to mention the Sci Fi powerhouse Battlestar Galactica.

Though this was no doubt not the intent, splitting the nominations into panels inevitably led to some truly nonsensical split decisions. I'm glad the best-drama panel picked House — but how can the Emmys justify nominating House without nominating Hugh Laurie, who basically is the show? What were they rewarding, the set?

Then there's the year's most outrageous omission: the failure to nominate ABC's Lost, which won last year and should have been a front-runner this year

And though it's possible that the ensemble nature of the show hurt the chances of the individual stars, it's impossible to explain how voters decided that the only actor who merited a nod was Henry Ian Cusick as Desmond.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:57 PM |

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Pirates 2 Opens BIG

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Box Office Mojo is reporting that Pirates of the Carribean 2 is crushing box office records. Funny, since I'm not all that excited to see it, that it did so well. Of course I still will, and hopefully love it - sometime early next week. Some friends tried to see it yesterday, and couldn't because it was sold out (all 6 shows). Now that's saying something.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:52 PM |

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SVCC, HSM and UFC

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Had a great day with the kids and World Cup - and now just got back from Saddleback where I snuck backstage to the main service and made sure we were announcing Austin Carty will be here in the services next weekend. It'll be fun having him here for the Student Leadership Conference, and then staying through all 6 services, too. Fields is starting a new 3-week series - Adventure Management, which should be great.

And speaking of DF, he played a wicked game of Simon Says in HSM (High School Ministry) tonight that had everyone rolling. That guy is GOOD at that game. Shoot! After the service I ran over to McGill's house and watched the big UFC with a dozen friends, too.

So a good Saturday. Now, off to work on the leader's guide to next week's Student Leadership Conference. That's just how we roll around here.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:44 PM |

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Thoughts from a TV Fast

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Treece just wrapped up a 30-day television fast and has some great insights about himself and his youth ministry. Impressive stuff from such a young lad in ministry - insightful and a must read. Here's a clip:
* The dust on my TV screen is caused by the static electrical build-up that happens when the TV is turned on. Thus, my TV has been dust free for over 30 days now...

* I sleep better when I don't fall asleep in front of the TV watching The Colbert Report and then get up around 3am to get in bed...

* Silence isn't as scary as I thought...

* I have a lot more self control than I thought. This excites me and makes me somewhat proud. It also makes me a little scared; as I can no longer use the excuse "I can't help it" for most of my behaviors...
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:19 AM |

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Sweet New 360 Game

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I'm going to buy this game as soon as the Student Leadership Conference is over. And them I'm going to sit on the couch for a few days and do nothing but play it and love on my kids. That's how I veg, and no one is going to stop me.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:09 AM |

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Couple Shots from Staff Retreat

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Just digging through some phone pictures this morning and found a couple more shots from the student ministry staff retreat last week. The first is of part of our team at a mexican resturant (delicious) and the other is the view of the hotel courtyard from the 4th floor. It was so great to get away, hang with the team, swim, get sunburned and play DDR.

Doesn't get much better than that.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:02 AM |

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Trends of the Next Generation

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Neil send me this link to a blog that has interviews with some pretty powerful people in the youth culture world. They've done a ton of work and research figuring out "what's next." If you want to know more about that - then hit the link. Here's a clip of it, too:

Question: Typically, how long does a “young-people” fad last?

Answer: It depends on the country and age group, but generally young people do not think something is a fad. It’s just what’s happening right then. A 15-year-old’s sense of history is about three years, which explains, for example, why they think they’re creating punk rock, even though their parents may have listened to the Sex Pistols.

If something becomes “classic” than it’s more long term and most likely has become a part of several aspects of youth lifestyle. Such as Converse sneaks—most young people have no idea they were intended as basketball shoes. They represent quintessential punk. Timberlands have crossed over yet maintained their cred. Once used for utilitarian purposes, they are now the footwear of choice in various urban markets, particularly among the krumping scene in South-Central LA where it’s a part of the tribal street dance style, even if you’re wearing a pleated Brazilian-capoiera-inspired skirt with “American Apparel” type tube socks and arm sock-sleeves.

A Japanese trend that’s crossed over is BAPE—Bathing Ape—bringing colorful patent leather sneaks, characters, urban vinyl dolls, and entire collection of cool, inspired by manga to the States. I realize I just talked about a bunch of footwear examples, but hopefully it shows concepts of fads, trends, and quintessential classics.

We asked the question across all our global studies about information overload: “Do you feel there’s too much information coming at you to absorb?” The young people in the United States, Canada, and Japan said No. If anything, young people want more…they’re hungry. You can see this in our China Study too.

But the European results are much different. In the UK, they feel overloaded, saturated, can’t handle it; and in Germany there’s a similar feeling. It’s like they don’t want change as much. Whereas Spain, they’re far more into information in general and don’t feel that overwhelmed. Italy’s like Spain in that sense. Here’s a generalization: China and Japan are futuristic and optimistic; Western Europe is stuck in their history; and America has no past and no future—we’re Now.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:45 AM |

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Cranking on the SLC Notebook

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Been slammed today on this PDYM Student Leadership notebook from 8AM until now - taking just a short break for a venue pastor meeting up at chuch (with Claimjumper to boot) and some fun interaction with the staff throughout the day. Good times.

Thought I would post a small .pdf sample of the project in it's very pre-final form if you wanted to see what I've been sweating over non-stop today. Enjoy!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:43 PM |

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One Last Sports Instructional Video on Ebay

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OK .. you'll be happy to know that the latest podcast charity auction of Matt McGill's Sports Instructional Video went for a cool $87.00. In light of the fact that we can now buy another goat for Tanzania on this auction alone, I think I'll toss up another for bidding tonight. I think this is the last one if I hold out the last couple copies - 1 for McGill, 1 for Fields and one for the SYM archives. You may bid when ready.

CLICK HERE TO CHECK IT OUT

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:27 PM |

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Looks Like Next Week for the Podcast?

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It appears that we might not be shooting the next podcast until Tuesday morning ... been a long week already crazy busy prepping for the PDYM Student Leadership conference next week. Not to mention Andy's new baby, a quick trip to Colorado and that little holiday called the 4th of July. I'll keep you updated right here, but for sure next Tuesday we're on the air!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:23 PM |

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Back from Colorado

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Went on a quick 24-hour trip to Colorado today - good times checking out Group Publishing and seeing how the operation works there. Solid place - lots of great people with great hearts. Got to eat some authentic Mexican food, sample the Starbucks in their lobby, and hang with some great friends. Time for bed!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:12 AM |

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Student Leader Notebook Due Tomorrow

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OK ... the PDYM Student Leadership notebook is due to the printer ... and I've got miles to go before I sleep. Argh! Let's get cranking - the conference is going to be SO much fun - can't wait!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:40 PM |

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Swimming, BBQ and the Bounce House

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Spent the bulk of the day over at the Fields' house enjoying the pool and tossing some burgers around on the BBQ. Really fun day, capped off with a few fireworks (in the sky and in the backyard). If there ever was an example of how Americans should be celebrating Independence Day, I think we could run a clinic. The "bounce house" thing for all of the kids was great, and everyone ate way too much and had too much fun.

Some observations:
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:18 PM |

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Unofficial SYM Podcast Blog

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A funny new blog sprung up today on wordpress, apparently its sole function is to review the SYM podcast and/or add in some funny links. I have no idea who's behind it, but I hope it gets updated weekly - made me laugh.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:14 PM |

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World Cup and Space Shuttle Launch

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Solid 4th of July so far ... watched the space shuttle take off with the kids and then the afternoon match of Germany vs. Italy. Too bad Germany couldn't convert on some earlier opportunities in the match ... still a great game. Time to hang up my Ballak jersey for another 4 years. Next time!

Off to the Fields ...

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:39 PM |

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The 3rd of July

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While the 3rd of July doesn't have nearly the clout of July 4th here in America - it sure was a great day here in Southern California. The church gave everyone the day off, so we spent the day in the sun and around the house cooking for the family on the grill and spending time with the boys in the pool. And for good measure, spent some time editing some videos for the PDYM Student Leadership Conference. Ah, such is life - in the home stretch.

Tomorrow we'll hang with the Fields and friends and do the fireworks thing, should be fun!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:59 AM |

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America Eats

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There's a fantastic show on the History Channel that I just discovered during the hiatus season of good TV like 24, LOST and American Idol.

America Eats. Here's a clip from their press release:

Did you know that Teddy Roosevelt took over 500 gallons of beer on an African safari? Ever wonder who first came up with the idea for pizza… how the hot dog found its bun… or how the brand name of a soft drink became the second most recognized word on the planet? The new series AMERICAN EATS is the quirky, nostalgic – and often surprising – look back at the history, mystery and technology behind our favorite foods. AMERICAN EATS makes its world premiere on The History Channel on Thursday, June 29 at 10pm ET/PT.

Each light-hearted weekly episode tells the story of the brilliant ideas, offbeat inventions, and daring innovators who transformed the way we eat while helping to define American culture. Along the way, viewers will discover why it took much more than a tasty recipe for pizza to go from Italy to pizza-parlor delivery trucks everywhere. We learn how a backyard concoction went from pharmacy soda fountains to become a staple of American life … and how a chef’s hurt feelings led to the ever-popular potato chip! AMERICAN EATS is a celebration of the foods we love and the remarkable stories behind them. Experts featured on AMERICAN EATS include authors, food innovators, pop culture experts, magazine writers, industry historians and university professors.

Basically it is a history of food, an examination of the socital evolution changing the way and what we eat, and also a description of the origin of food and how it was named. SO fun.

Here's an example of my learnings after just 2 episodes:
Here's an article on the show as well. You MUST watch it.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 7:50 AM |

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Doing My Part

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In honor of all of the global warming craze these days, I wanted to assue my blog readers I'm doing my part to help the environment.

Tomorrow I will eat Subway for lunch. You can bank on it.

Yes, that's my contribution ... I know it's not as good as maybe taking the subway or buying a Prius, but hey, it's a start. And, it's definitely too hot to walk anywhere so I'll need to drive with my air conditioning on max, and I'll want to look good so I'll be sure to use aerosol hair spray. And no doubt I'll take a few too many napkins that'll end up in the landfill, too.

I wonder if someone could do a study on if everyone just used 1 napkin at each fast food meal how much better the ozone layer would be. And hey, that's something people might actually do.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:55 PM |

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Would It Be OK?

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Let's say I get invited to speak all over the country. I know - but just go with me for a second.

Would it be OK for me to speak at a synagogue? Would it be OK for me to speak at a sporting event? Would it be OK for me to speak in a communistic country? Would it be OK for me to go on a TV show? Would it be OK if I spoke at a church that had a very different faith than I believed? Would it be OK to keynote a conference that didn't share all of the same values I did?

Let's add another layer here, too. Let's say there were absoltely no limits on what I could say. Although the place I was speaking in and I may have different messages or values, I had the freedom to say whatever I wanted in any way that was led.

Would it be OK?

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:43 PM |

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Funny Worm Video

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My kids were watching when I saw this over on Gerry's blog - they loved it and must have watched it 50 times. In light of that, I had to put it here for everyone to enjoy, too. Funny.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:54 PM |

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Matt's Going to Mexico

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Matt McGill is going to Mexico tomorrow. Read about his preparation for his trip on his blog. He will be missed. Here's my favorite paragraph from this entry:
Someone put avocados in the cart. Please understand that we are going to Mexico, all of these guys have been there, and this is the country that offers guacamole FOR FREE at their taco stands. I took the avocados out.
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:49 PM |

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Great Weekend Service at Saddleback

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Doug Fields taught big church tonight here at Saddleback. It was an expositional study from the book of Genesis - the tough but beautiful story of Abraham and Issac. Really good stuff - continuing the series Worship from A to Z.

I think my favorite part of the night (aside from all of the spoof Newsweek humor) was the attention given to a strong parallel in the Bible - the potential sacrifice of Abraham's only son and God giving us His only Son Jesus. It really was an excellent presentation of the Gospel as clear as could be and an open opportunity for people to trust Christ as their Savior.

Great weekend!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:31 PM |

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Record of Rights and Wrongs

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Just be glad your senior pastor or elders don't keep track of all of your fouls as a youth pastor like they do in soccer. How would you like a newspaper article like this about you?

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 8:20 PM |

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We're Going to the Zoo

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Just finished a quick trip today to the Santa Ana Zoo. Pretty stinkin' hot today here in SoCal. According to weather.com it was only 85 there, but it felt like the surface of the sun. It was so hot they took many of the animals inside and out of the heat, which kinda makes a trip to the zoo a bit anti-climactic. But still, great time with the kids and grandma who's in town for a few more days. Good times!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:25 PM |

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