Sunday, August 19, 2018

Are you mad at God? Know someone who is?

Just in case any of my friends are angry at God, this video is for you.

Thank you for subscribing and reading Cup O' Joe with Bill.

Please share this with someone in your life who might need a word of encouragement.

You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
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Sunday, August 12, 2018

Power Connection Summer 2018

Click any image below to enlarge for viewing.
On some occasions, I'll go on a ministry adventure by myself. It's not often. But God always shows up to touch people's lives and that's why we are disciplemaking missionaries with Cadre Missionaries. However, when these two girls are with me on a ministry adventure, the fun, impact, and relationships are exponential. They have a way of connecting with people and then connecting those people to God.

Such was the case when I spoke to over 800 junior high/middle school students and youth leaders from the Reformed Church of America at Kansas State University, Kansas City, KS. This is the fourth time I've been the keynote speaker at Power Connection! I loved each time but this time was special.

Here's just one thing I love about being around the next generation: Ice cream for breakfast. This picture was taken at 8 AM. No parents or youth leaders in sight. Nice. As you can see, I'm sticking with coffee. I might reconsider if they offered coffee ice cream.

Here's another thing I love about Power Connection: Students do business with God! Many students came to Christ in our main sessions and in the small groups after the sessions. Many more opened their hearts to their youth leaders (many of whom are parents) about getting serious about following Jesus together. In the words of one youth leader: "Power Connection 2018 was life-changing. Awesome to see students connecting with youth leaders and other students about following Jesus together."

I love making disciplemakers with the next generations and those who love the next generations. One youth leader wrote to us: "I loved watching the kids we brought with us learn more about God and really want to keep learning more. One of the kids we brought along happens to be our niece and we had the privilege to witness her accept Jesus Christ as her Lord and Savior and that had to be the best moment of the whole trip." We love disciplemaking friendships—starting with our families!

One youth leader wrote: "Sitting through your three keynote sessions and then in small groups after each session, I saw the girls and myself grow closer to Jesus and each other. We all loved every minute of Power Connection. I challenged the girls to take your challenge to read the book of Proverbs for 31 days as well as read another verse that I send them daily. We had such open and honest conversations in youth group time, so we set up a group chat through text where we are going to talk about the verse I sent them and each chapter of Proverbs. My daughter was the first one to read it this morning. Please pray that the girls and I will continue to grow in their relationship with Christ and each other."

The young woman on the right is married to a youth pastor. She told us, “You were the speaker when I was in junior high and God really began to get a hold of me then.” Of course, this filled my heart with joy—to see her now investing her life in disciplemaking with the next generation. Exactly! That's how we roll as Cadre Missionaries. We aspire to make disciplemakers like Jesus did.

We've been doing ministry with the next generations for a long time with Cadre and I can honestly say that One Time Blind (pictured above) is worth contacting if you like drama that is engaging, funny and speaks the truth in a powerful way without being corny. Every time I have had the honor of working with them, there art speaks directly and powerfully to my soul.

"My love for Christ grew so much! I gave my whole heart to the Lord and was surrounded by many others doing the same." —from a student.

To God, and God alone, be all the glory! We're just thrilled to be along for the ride.

You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
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Sunday, August 05, 2018

Disciplemaking Friendships, One-Anothering, and Living on Mission TOGETHER Wherever You Are...

Bill,
We're in the airport on our way home from ministry in Uganda. We're enjoying one more time of havering through the "one-anothers." What a gift Cadre's One Another Living Guide has been to our team. We have been equipped daily to serve King Jesus and our Ugandan family. Today we drilled down on #19: "spurring each other on to acts of love" (Heb. 10:24). A great reminder that this disciplemaking mission doesn't end when we get on a plane. We long to take what we have learned here and spur each other on to make disciples back at home, "starting with our family!"
Love you brother!
Steve 
(Also known as CPS—Crazy Pastor Steve)


But Wait! There's more! 
Everyone gets a One Another Living Guide when they participate in this!


You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
Let me encourage you and and make you think 1 stinking time a week (usually Monday morning) with a virtual Cup O' Joe with Bill in your email inbox. Two Simple Steps...
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2. Go to your email and click the Feedburner confirmation link.
You can unsubscribe at any time with no questions asked simply by clicking the unsubscribe link at the bottom of any email you receive from Cup O' Joe with Bill. Honest. You got nothing to lose. Try it.

Sunday, July 29, 2018

The first and foremost need of the day?

Click image below to enlarge for viewing and thinking...
Study the above diagram closely. I dare you to think this through.

Is this true? Why or why not?

What happens if you start at the top—focusing your energies on everything but developing disciplemaking men and women?

What could happen if we start at the bottom—focusing our energies first and foremost on developing disciplemaking men and women?

Now, take what you know about Jesus' life and ministry and run it through the diagram above.

Could it really be that the first and foremost need of our day is disciplemaking men and women? 

I concede that focusing on helping men and women live and share a disciplemaking way of life with others isn't as sexy or cool as say, "casting a compelling vision" for a whole community, neighborhood, or church.

But since when have the followers of Jesus been about the sexy and cool?

Instead of asking, "What does disciplemaking look like in the church?" perhaps we should start asking, "What does disciplemaking look like in my everyday life?"

Here are some thoughts—if you dare...
Why start with disciplemaking men and women first?
What does disciplemaking look like in real life?
Where is a good place to start as a disciplemaker?
Do you need a word of encouragement about disciplemaking?
What if disciplemaking really is the main thing?
Are you at the mercy of the next cool thing?

You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
Let me encourage you and and make you think 1 stinking time a week (usually Monday morning) with a virtual Cup O' Joe with Bill in your email inbox. Two Simple Steps...
1. Go here and submit your email.
2. Go to your email and click the Feedburner confirmation link.
You can unsubscribe at any time with no questions asked simply by clicking the unsubscribe link at the bottom of any email you receive from Cup O' Joe with Bill. Honest. You got nothing to lose. Try it.

Sunday, July 22, 2018

Are you discouraged? Know someone who is?

Just in case any of my friends feel like they are drowning in the sea of life today, this video is for you!

Thank you for subscribing to and reading Cup O' Joe with Bill.

Please share this with someone in your life who might need a word of encouragement.

You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
Let me encourage you and and make you think 1 stinking time a week (usually Monday morning) with a virtual Cup O' Joe with Bill in your email inbox. Two Simple Steps...
1. Go here and submit your email.
2. Go to your email and click the Feedburner confirmation link.
You can unsubscribe at any time with no questions asked simply by clicking the unsubscribe link at the bottom of any email you receive from Cup O' Joe with Bill. Honest. You got nothing to lose. Try it.

Sunday, July 15, 2018

Jesus' Disciplemaking Secret Sauce...

What?
There’s a lot of talk about disciplemaking these days. But what does that really look like in everyday real life? If you’re interested in exploring what Jesus-like disciplemaking looks like in a 21st century Western world, this training experience is for you! In each of the following three sessions below, we’ll look at a nonnegotiable for making disciplemakers like Jesus.

Session 1 Be a Disciple
Everything in life and ministry will try to pull you off the simplicity of following Jesus together.

Session 2 Who Makes Disciples
Following Jesus isn’t a subject to be mastered, but an infectious way of life that is lived together and shared with others.

Session 3 Who Make More Disciples
If those we disciple don’t make more disciples, then we haven’t made disciples like Jesus.

Training Materials?




Each person will receive a Disciplemaker's Living Guide for living what you learn with others.





Schedule This Training?
Contact Bill Allison.

Secret Sauce training at Christ Place Church in Nebraska!

You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
Let me encourage you and and make you think 1 stinking time a week (usually Monday morning) with a virtual Cup O' Joe with Bill in your email inbox. Two Simple Steps...
1. Go here and submit your email.
2. Go to your email and click the Feedburner confirmation link.
You can unsubscribe at any time with no questions asked simply by clicking the unsubscribe link at the bottom of any email you receive from Cup O' Joe with Bill. Honest. You got nothing to lose. Try it.

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

Some Summer Ministry 2018...

We just got back from Challenge 2018 in Kansas City, MO, and here is some of what God did! (Click any image to enlarge for viewing.)
Here's a picture that screams "disciplemaking friendships!" It is always so much fun to partner with Shane Stacey (center in green) and the student ministries of the Evangelical Free Church of America (EFCA). See a little bit of our history herehere, and here.

It all went down July 2-6, 2018. It was Cadre's honor to partner with the EFCA by bringing disciplemaking training to students and youth leaders at this year's Challenge Conference. 

Our dear friend from WI, Nate Stenholtz, also did Cadre training at challenge this year! That's right. At the very center of our mission is training disciplemaking trainers to make more disciplemakers. That's disciplemaking multiplication! You interested?

Do you want to know what we trained at Challenge? Then check out The Disciplemaker's Prayer. I dare you to start praying it.

Over the course of a few days, we were able to encourage and equip over 600 students from all over the country with our "Friends That Matter" disicplemaking training experience! How strategic is that

And we were able to encourage and equip another 600 youth leaders from all over the country with our "Jesus' Disciplemaking Secret Sauce" training experience! Think about how strategic THIS is.

In between the large main sessions and our disciplemaking training labs, we did this! We loved on youth leaders and students. So. Much. Fun.

Want to know what Jesus' disciplemaking secret sauce is? Here's a hint.

Wherever we went—even if it was out for our morning coffee—we ran into people we know and love. Here are some of our friends from Laredo, TX.

Two thumbs up to YOU for tracking with us via Cup O' Joe with Bill. From our hearts to yours, THANK YOU! It is an honor to be your Cadre Missionaries.


You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
Let me encourage you and and make you think 1 stinking time a week (usually Monday morning) with a virtual Cup O' Joe with Bill in your email inbox. Two Simple Steps...
1. Go here and submit your email.
2. Go to your email and click the Feedburner confirmation link.
You can unsubscribe at any time with no questions asked simply by clicking the unsubscribe link at the bottom of any email you receive from Cup O' Joe with Bill. Honest. You got nothing to lose. Try it.

Monday, July 02, 2018

Start Your Fall Off Right with Cadre's Ministry Is Relationships Disciplemaking Training Experience!

When and Where?
Saturday AM, September 22, 2018
8:30 AM to 12:30 PM
Doors will open at 8 AM.

What?
Ministry Is Relationships!
Unleash God’s Power in Your Relationships
Love God.  Love people. Make disciples. The Ministry Is Relationships training experience takes you back to the heart of real life ministry and life change— relationships! More of a fun learning experience than a passive workshop, you will encounter these sessions and learnings:

Session 1 No Relationships = No Ministry; 
                    Know Relationships = Know Ministry
An out-of-the-box learning experience will get us started and explain why relationships are the heart of ministry—and God’s mode of operation for impacting and changing the lives of those in our ministry!

Session 2 God-Powered Relationship Skills
Learn the biblical motivation for building relationships.  Learn the three key relationship skills for connecting with the heart of others.

Session 3 He That Hath Ears—Let Him Hear!
A listening experience you will never forget—and be able to use in your life and ministry to build relationships.

Session 4 CLEAN UP Messy Relationships
Learn to use God's relationship cleaning supplies.

In addition, each participant receives a training manual complete with practical application pages, follow-through ideas, an agenda for a large group action plan meeting, AND a twenty-five day One Another Living Guide for individual and small group study on the “one another” verses!


Who should come?
Anyone junior high through senior citizen.
Note: Bring your team of volunteers and key students! I encourage you to do a working lunch with your team from 12:30-1:30 PM. You can use that time for applying what you learned in the training to your ministry. The training manual will walk you through this meeting with your team!

Get the Word Out?
You'll need to get the WORD out to others ASAP! Here's a WORD doc that you can tweak the details on and then use as a bulletin stuffer

Cost?
$15 per person for training materials.
Please make checks out to Cadre Missionaries.

RSVP?
Please RSVP and get the number of people attending to Bill ASAP.

You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
Let me encourage you and and make you think 1 stinking time a week (usually Monday morning) with a virtual Cup O' Joe with Bill in your email inbox. Two Simple Steps...
1. Go here and submit your email.
2. Go to your email and click the Feedburner confirmation link.
You can unsubscribe at any time with no questions asked simply by clicking the unsubscribe link at the bottom of any email you receive from Cup O' Joe with Bill. Honest. You got nothing to lose. Try it.

Sunday, June 24, 2018

Disicplemaking with the Next Generations: Rethinking the Lecture?

[Note: This is from Tim Elmore. I share it because I think it's interesting and thought-provoking.]
I recently met with my friend, Zach Thomas, to talk about his story. Not long ago, he released a book called, Leader Farming. He compares good leaders to farmers who constantly cultivate the people under their care as potential leaders.
He reminded me that much of what he does he learned at West Point.
You see, Zach is a graduate of the United States Military Academy in New York, the one we refer to as West Point. They admit the sharpest students and immediately cultivate leadership in each one of them.
What’s the first step they take?
It’s called “The Thayer Method.” It is a 200-year-old pedagogy named for Sylvanus Thayer, who is credited with being the “Father of the United States Military Academy.” He developed a method in the early 1800s that essentially flips the classroom.
Zach told me he remembers being absolutely engaged, from day one, in the classroom and anywhere they traveled on campus. The first rule given to instructors (professors) is they are not allowed to lecture.
Seriously?
Yes, seriously. Instead, the model is 100 percent activity based. Zach told me, “Our classrooms had boards on all four sides of the room and our desks paralleled the walls facing inward. Every cadet had a board behind their back. We were given our lesson ahead of time and were responsible for reading and studying the material before class. Once class started, the instructor facilitated class by assigning what we called “drill problems” to each cadet. (This was the incentive to do all the pre-work before class. Cadets had to present to each other.) Whether it was a math problem or an engaging thought-provoking question about history, we had to write our answer on the board and share with the rest of the class. We essentially taught ourselves.”
Why This Method Is Perfect for Today’s Students
You may have already guessed it, but The Thayer Method is perfect for both Millennials and Generation Z. Why? These students are part of the first generation that doesn’t need adults to get information. They have it at their fingertips. They don’t need educators or parents for information, but rather for interpretation. We must help them make sense of all they know. They don’t need us for content but for context. So, this method enables them to immediately share what they think (based on what they’ve Googled), and we can enable them to ask the right questions; and to do the critical thinking necessary.
Many of today’s students are finding ways to hack the world around them. We’ve all heard of YouTube Millionaires who figure out how to monetize our current “on-demand” culture to their advantage. The ones I talk to seldom look to adults to guide them in their careers, feeling like we don’t understand the culture as well as they do. They are incentivized by action more than by mere talking. They want to do things that are real and meaningful—not hypothetical and trivial. They want to find what they’re passionate about and do something.
What’s the Best Way to Help Them?
Become a “guide”—not a “god.”
Be a “consultant” —not a “commander.”
Be sure and facilitate rather than pontificate.
Maybe, just maybe, The Thayer Method can work for you as well.

More like this here...
* Training Without Lecturing?
* Is the Lecture Killing Sunday School?
* What to Do with Bored Church Kids?
* Junior High Students Lead the Way in Disciplemaking
* Give a man a lecture and you've...
* Church and Learning Don't Have to Be Oxymoronic

You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
Let me encourage you and and make you think 1 stinking time a week (usually Monday morning) with a virtual Cup O' Joe with Bill in your email inbox. Two Simple Steps...
1. Go here and submit your email.
2. Go to your email and click the Feedburner confirmation link.
You can unsubscribe at any time with no questions asked simply by clicking the unsubscribe link at the bottom of any email you receive from Cup O' Joe with Bill. Honest. You got nothing to lose. Try it.

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Adventures in Bad Hermeneutics

Hermeneutics in the News...
When Government Officials Quote the Bible (6/21/18)
Hermeneutics is the science and art of correct Bible interpretation. It's a science because it involves guiding principles, rules, and methods. It's an art because the more one uses the guiding principles, the more skilled he/she may become at interpreting the Bible well. Of course the goal of hermeneutics is "rightly dividing the Word of truth" (2 Timothy 2:15).

And make no mistake about it:
The goal of rightly dividing the Word of truth is to know and love God so much that it fills your entire being and overflows into loving people(See 1 Timothy 1:5-6.)

Note: If your approach to interpreting the Scriptures makes you arrogant and less loving of people, you're doing it wrong.

Sometimes a great way to understand what something is, is to understand what it is not. (Note how John does this when trying to explain the nature of the New Jerusalem in Revelation 22:3-5.) Hence, this post will be an ongoing adventure in bad hermeneutics.

Warning
Many of these examples of less-than-stellar hermeneutics below are simply for fun—illustrating absurdity by being absurd—and, hopefully, make a point in the process. (See picture above.)  If satire and sarcasm are two words you know not of, abandon this post now! You have been warned.

However, if you like to smile, laugh AND think deeply about God, the Bible, culture and life, this post is especially for you. Enjoy.

Adventures in Bad Hermeneutics...
* God wants me to spend winters in Phoenix.
* Road rage in the Bible.
* Tickle me Esau.
* God is love, love, and only love.
* "Christian" pick up lines.
* Knowing the Bible and missing God.
* I feel sorry for this Bible verse.
* God loves everyone I love and hates everyone I hate.
* I love God for the benefits, not for God himself.
* The Old Testament is not germane to us today.
* Woe to you when all people speak well of you.
* Why read the Bible when you can just see the movie?
* The biblical approach to finding a mate.
* A story you wish was from Babylon Bee but sadly it's not.

Now that you know what NOT to do, you might want to explore this FREE video course on hermeneutics.

Hermeneutics in the News...
* When Government Officials Quote the Bible (6/21/18)


You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
Let me encourage you and and make you think 1 stinking time a week (usually Monday morning) with a virtual Cup O' Joe with Bill in your email inbox. Two Simple Steps...
1. Go here and submit your email.
2. Go to your email and click the Feedburner confirmation link.
You can unsubscribe at any time with no questions asked simply by clicking the unsubscribe link at the bottom of any email you receive from Cup O' Joe with Bill. Honest. You got nothing to lose. Try it.

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Disciplemaking in Albania...

(In case you missed it, here's the fun backstory on this post.)
Because of our flights, I am happy to report that I had coffee in three different countries—France, Italy, and Albania—and it was fabulous coffee in each country. Mostly, coffee was just expresso in small cups (see center and right above) or a cappuccino (left). Yes, I purposely avoided Turkish Coffee. Been there. Done that. Got the coffee grounds in my teeth to prove it.

Here's WHO we invested our lives in—and received so much love and encouragement from—while we were in Albania. It's a beautiful mix of Albanians and Americans who aspire to love God, love people, and make disciplemakers.

As soon as we got settled, we started disciplemaking training with Albanian ministry leaders. Thanks to all who $upported this disciplemaking adventureYour support helped to send me, encourage missionaries, AND cover the cost of training materials! We are so thankful for your partnership in the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Over the first several days, we did two different Cadre disciplemaking training experiences: 1. From Disciples to Disciplemakers and 2. Ministry Is Relationships.

After developing and doing training across the USA for many years, it was a dream come true to do Cadre training in another country and culture. I was told by people who had experienced our training that it would be perfect for this occasion in Albania. I think it was. To God be the glory!

One of my greatest joys on this Albanian adventure was watching my dear disciplemaking friend, Crazy Pastor Steve (CPS), do Cadre's disciplemaking training. Why? Because it's disciplemaking multiplication. What's better than doing disciplemaking training yourself? Helping someone else live it and share with others.

We even baptized one of our team members in the Ionian Sea!

That moment when what you're eating is looking at you. In case you're wondering, our meals were very Mediterranean. And yes, I ate it (except the head). It was delish.

The rest of our time was about living out a Jesus-like disciplemaking way of life—with each other as a team—and in the various villages in the mountains of Albania.

For example. these kids live in a village where there is no Gospel witness. Every week the ministry we partnered with travels to these kids up in the mountains of another village. The kids were waiting for us to arrive. The woman center-right in the pic above became a disciple through the ministry we worked with—and now she's leading the ministry in this village. Exactly. That's disciplemaking.

Ministry/missions isn't something we do TO or FOR people. It's loving God and loving people and making disciplemakers. It's not a program

Yes, we worked with orphans. One of the beauties of the Gospel is how God places us in spiritual families. We saw God's people living out God's heart for these kids and it was inspiring.

We invested a lot of our time living and sharing the Gospel and disciplemaking on the soccer field. Our dear disciplemaking friend, Cole Espenschied, of Fellowship of Christian Athletes, led the way for us! 

We've been friends with Cole and his family from the beginning of his time in Peoria. Cole has participated in the Peoria Area Leadership Community (PALC). Another of my greatest joys on this mission trip was seeing Cole take Jesus-like disciplemaking and translate it into a hands-on training experience called Doing Sports God's Way. If you love Jesus and sports and want to see how these two can fly together, contact Cole!

Where you find Jesus-like disciplemaking, you'll find churches being planted—like this one above. I know. It's a crazy idea.

We experienced disciplemaking friendships in homes. We did multiple home visits. Yeah, I know. Not very Western, is it? But that's just one reason I love Eastern culture. Hospitality. How important is hospitality when it comes to the Gospel and disciplemaking? In the Bible, one of the requirements for being a church leader is hospitality.

Not going to lie. We drank a lot of coffee. I'd say 3-5 times a day we engaged coffee. And coffee engaged us. Interesting. I never saw a single "to-go" cup anywhere. In Albania, coffee isn't really about just coffee. It's about slowing down for community and friendship. Living and sharing a Jesus-like disciplemaking way of life can happen over coffee if we dare to slow down a little.

This just may be the best mission trip I've been a part of. Why? 
1. We did Cadre training that came out of disciplemaking friendships in the USA.
2. I didn't do all the training. (That's multiplication.) 
3. We aspired to live the training all day long wherever we went. 
4. Consequently, we were a loving community on a disciplemaking mission. This community included wonderful disciplemaking missionaries on the ground in Albania and many nationals.
5. Did I mention the coffee?

Thank you for reading all the way to the end—and praying for us! You are God's wind in our sails and we thank God for you.

"...Go into all the world and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I've commanded you." 
—Jesus, Matthew 28:19

You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
Let me encourage you and and make you think 1 stinking time a week (usually Monday morning) with a virtual Cup O' Joe with Bill in your email inbox. Two Simple Steps...
1. Go here and submit your email.
2. Go to your email and click the Feedburner confirmation link.
You can unsubscribe at any time with no questions asked simply by clicking the unsubscribe link at the bottom of any email you receive from Cup O' Joe with Bill. Honest. You got nothing to lose. Try it.