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SimplyJosh.com Has Moved!

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Exciting announcements today ... update your bookmarks and hit this link!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 8:51 AM |

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Gamerscore Hits 15,000

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Another month piling on the achievements on the Xbox 360, with today's work taking us over 15,000. Do you have a 360? I've got a bunch of youth workers on my friends list - join us!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:50 PM |

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Video Game Review: Meet the Robinsons

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Just finished up playing through a Christmas gift the boys bought - Meet the Robinsons for the Xbox 360. It is a fun game, with average graphics and surprisingly long playtime. The only problem is that the story is below par and the control is terrible. I enjoyed playing it with the kids for the family time, but I was frustrated more than a few times to throw the controller at the TV. Fun for the kids, frustrating for the dad. C-

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:35 PM |

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Free Arcade Game on the 360

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Taking a break from last minute Friday night sermon run-throughs ... just saw this note from Microsoft about some LIVE problems over the holidays that will result in all of us console owners getting a free game. Lovely! If you've got a 360, read the letter.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:34 PM |

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Leading from Beneath

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Thought this article from Andy Stanley was great. Here's a clip from Lead from Beneath on MinistryToday.com:

1. When an instruction is given, follow through now; debrief later. When the discussion's over and the one God has placed in authority over you says, "This is what we're gonna do," then you do it. Follow through first, and debrief later. Your words and actions need to express, "I am clearly and squarely on your team and under your authority." It doesn't mean you can't ask, "Why?" But do so in the clear context of serving the organization at large and observing the chain-of-command. In your own style and your own way, you must learn to communicate both: "I am under your authority," and "Can we talk about it?"

2. Never verbalize your frustration with the process in front of other team members. Public loyalty results in private leverage. If you want to have leverage one-on-one with your authorities, then show support for their ideas and strategies in front of the team—even if you think they're absolutely off the wall. Likewise, if you want to lose leverage with your boss, then disrupt and ask challenging questions and foster division among the ranks publicly.

Support publicly; challenge privately. Reverse those two things and you surrender your authority as a leader within your organization. Again, it's OK to think different—to challenge. But the method you use and the place you choose is critical. Everybody who has authority is also under authority.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:19 PM |

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Bizarre Text Message

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"Find where the moon touches the earth and release the humming bird."

This SMS hit my phone yesterday, the origin was Arkansas. I Googled it and came up with pretty much nothing. Am I missing something?

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 7:21 PM |

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The Great Mullet Hunt of 2008

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Yes, I've found a way to work this into my Best Year Ever talk.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 7:17 PM |

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Lightsaber Defender

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Various friends have sent me this link and I forgot to post about it - apparently an 11-year old kid wields a pretty good lightsaber. I love it!
An 11-year-old boy demonstrated The Force when he defended his mom by hitting an attacker with a toy lightsaber. The man, in his 30s, fled after being confronted by the youngster outside a bakery in Swardeston, near Norwich, England.

Police said the boy hit the man with his toy after the man had punched and verbally abused his mother as she approached her car. Officers are appealing for witnesses to the Dec. 22 attack. Allan Jennings of the Norfolk Police said: "The incident caused quite a commotion and it is unlikely it would have gone unnoticed."
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 8:59 AM |

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The Best Star Wars Christmas Gift

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Oh man, I was just given an amazing Christmas/birthday gift. Who wouldn't want the brand new Star Wars pop up book? I love it! Thanks, Allison!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 11:33 PM |

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Social Networks and the Church

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Ministry Today magazine asked me for a few quotes for an upcoming article for their publication of faith and blogs. Here's their questions and my replies:

1. What are some specific examples from your ministry where social networking has helped you connect with people? Just this afternoon, one of our worship leaders was trying to find a musician for the band, and she said, "I texted and MySpaced her, so I'm sure I'll hear back from her any second." As if by magic, within a few minutes she had her reply and figured out the bass player for the weekend. Social networking isn't a tool to youth pastors - it is a significant part of the student's world.

2. One of the strengths of Facebook is how it "latches on" to the user with applications and deeper features than MySpace -- yet, MySpace is still more popular. Is one tool better than another? Facebook is definitely a cleaner, sharper face on it - but MySpace has critical mass. Every student has a MySpace, though Facebook is growing rapidly as well. For someone just starting out I would suggest steering clear of MySpace because it is so easily full of spam and has so much advertising, but at the end of the day I think both are really the best option.

3. What advice do you have for other ministries thinking of using MySpace/Facebook? One of the big benefits of these tools is that they are in the real world. These aren't Christian versions - these are the real deal. While that brings along its own share of problems and concerns, it puts the church out there with real people, instead of giving in to the temptation to be so self-focused. When you Google your church or student ministry, I want my MySpace, blog, Facebook and official site all at the top.

4. What are some of the dangers in using social networking? I think the most obvious one is that what you see on the surface is not all there is. Because users can private message and talk "behind the scenes" you've got to be careful to keep everything in the open as much as possible. The other potential problem is for your spaces to be "spammed" and filled with compromised content or useless information. You've GOT to check your family of sites on a regular basis if they're going to work. They create some extra work, but I believe they're well worth it.

5. Say a ministry doesn't feel comfortable with social networks, what other options are out there? Everyone has to figure out what is right for their ministry, so I think not using these sites is fine. I do think a church without at least a basic web presence is really missing out, and if it is at all possible to blog and keep content fresh and timely, people can really get an inside look at the church without even stepping through the doors. At the end of the day, these are tools to bring people to Jesus - if a ministry believes this is a tool that is effective in that mission, then by all means jump in.

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:35 PM |

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The Missional Blog

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Thought this article was an interesting take on Christianity and the blogging world. Would have loved to been at that blogging convention this past week. Here's a clip of their take on blogging and faith:

When Al Mohler, the President of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary and nationally syndicated talk radio host, addressed the relatively small but enthusiastic audience at GodblogCon 2007 in Las Vegas in early December he pointed out that "the new media" was "a missiological opportunity to which we are obligated."

Mohler emphasized the importance of taking "the new media seriously, not making it a bulletin board for isolated, disconnected, reckless ideas, snarky comments and anonymous diatribes, but rather, a place where seriously-minded Christians do the seriously-minded Christian thing and make serious Christian arguments in a serious Christian way with love and with charity, with boldness and with courage.

"Should Christians go into the wild, wild, west? Yes," said Mohler. "But we need to go in understanding that there is no sheriff. But that doesn't mean that we do not have a higher accountability, certainly we do. "Don't write anything that you wouldn't want your parents, children, pastor or lost neighbor to read. That would certainly change a lot of what many of us are tempted to do. Use language that you can live with over time in terms of accountability. Don't make hit and run attacks and write for more than today. Let your horizon be more than a 24-hour period or the week. Write knowing that someone somewhere is going to find your blog on some future day, and don't be embarrassed. Think before you post. If at all possible, have other eyes that look."


JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 10:19 PM |

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


Lyrics for Our Opening Song This Week

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Stop And Stare Lyrics (by OneRepublic)

This town is colder now, I think it's sick of us
It's time to make our move, I'm shakin off the rust
I've got my heart set on anywhere but here
I'm staring down myself, counting up the years
Steady hands, just take the wheel...
And every glance is killing me
Time to make one last appeal... for the life I lead

Stop and stare
I think I'm moving but I go nowhere
Yeah I know that everyone gets scared
But I've become what I can't be, oh
Stop and stare
You start to wonder why you're 'here' not there
And you'd give anything to get what's fair
But fair ain't what you really need
Oh, can u see what I see

They're tryin to come back, all my senses push
Un-tie the weight bags, I never thought I could...
Steady feet, don't fail me now
Gonna run till you can't walk
But something pulls my focus out
And I'm standing down...

Stop and stare
I think I'm moving but I go nowhere
Yeah I know that everyone gets scared
But I've become what I can't be, oh
Stop and stare
You start to wonder why you're here not there
And you'd give anything to get what's fair
But fair ain't what you really need
Oh, you don't need

What u need, what u need...

Stop and stare
I think I'm moving but I go nowhere
Yeah I know that everyone gets scared
But I've become what I can't be
Oh, do u see what I see...
This weekend we're teaching a quick 2-week series called Best Year Ever - how to get the most out of 2008 - and we just landed on this OneRepublic song to cover at the open. We're closing with Tree63's I'll Stand for You the ends into Hillsong's The Time Has Come. I'm experimenting with something this week, it is an invitation with a photographic twist.

Pictures Saturday night!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:09 PM |

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Response Card from Satan

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This came in a few weeks ago at a High School service. Very creative!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:55 AM |

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New Video Small Group Resources at SYM

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

Simply Youth Ministry has updated their inventory with some new small group video resources - including Identity (which looks the most interesting to me), Surviving School, Teens vs. Dating and I Am. Check them out for a nice change up in your small groups in the New Year!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 4:30 PM |

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


How Much is Your Blog Worth?

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My blog is worth $78,471.06.
How much is your blog worth?


Apparently, quite a bit. Hmmm ...

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 3:34 PM |

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


New Season of Ministry

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Today starts the first day in a new season of ministry for our family - Kurt has asked me to fill in for the coming months as the interim high school pastor here at Saddleback Church. I met with the high school team once before the Christmas break, and this is the first weekend I'll be teaching our students. There are so many great volunteers and staff!

Most things should remain the same - I'm still doing the daily youth ministry blog, the SYM podcast and helping out with the Group Youth Ministry Conference next month. Should be fun!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 3:11 PM |

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


Starting the New Year Right

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Thought Tony had some good stuff today on New Year's resolutions, and there's a good article on YouthMinistry.com on the subject, too. Here's a clip from Ready to Get Serious About That Resolution?
  1. Focus on 30 days not 12 Months: Instead of trying to amp up for 12 months of commitment to something you obviously haven’t been able to do before, focus on just he first 30 days. None of us have will power in these areas of “resolution”, otherwise they wouldn’t need to be a resolution. Instead focus on making it to the point where the pursuit of your resolution can become a habit.
  2. Look for Lifestyle Tipping Points: Resolutions are typically results we haven’t been able to obtain yet - and they feel like big things to accomplish. But usually it is a simple decision or new behavior that will be the “tipping point” to finally pulling it off. For me it is always my sleeping schedule. Just going to bed and waking up earlier is often the tipping point a lot of people need.
JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 2:24 PM |

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Up in the Sky

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Two amazing things in the sky today. 1) the Goodyear blimp, and 2) 5 airplanes creating a "Ron Paul for President" smoke art. And I didn't get a picture of the F-18's during the national anthem, or the Navy Seals that parachuted into the stadium. So fun!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 9:01 PM |

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Rose Bowl - The Day in Pictures

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What a day!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 8:57 PM |

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Happy New Year!

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Welcome to 2008, friends!

JG

posted by Joshua Griffin @ 12:00 AM |

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