Sunday, April 29, 2012

Monday Funday: If you have a twisted sense of humor...

NOTE: This bumper sticker is NOT on my car! (Just in case my mother-in-law reads my blog!)

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Wednesday, April 25, 2012

The pictures tell the story...

In the last couple of months… here's what we've been up to.  The pictures tell the story.  Click any image below to enlarge for viewing… and thanks for stopping by for a Cup O' Joe with me.
Last month's road trip with Jarrod Briggs. Three days. Three different Wisconsin locations.  Disciplemaking Is Relationships training.

Disciplemaking Is Relationships training with youth leaders from the Forrest Lakes District (WI) of the Evangelical Free Church of America. First stop: Rice Lake, WI.  It's not Canada, but you can see it from there… eh?

Here's a picture of young man risking his life. Yes, that's my daughter Josey.

Two words: Milkshake Monday.  An Allison family tradition.

Why do a major mailing when you can do a major mailing par-tay? Thanks to the Whites and the Bartz families for all the fun and help with our Spring ministry update letter!

Exploring the possibilities for a Disciplemaking Learning Community in the Bloomington/Normal IL area. Exciting.

Whenever we do ministry together, we always call each other up the day before to make sure our outfits match. That's my brother from another mother, Shane Stacey, and we're at the Coffee Hound in Bloomington. 

I have a lot of favorite pastors… here are three… because these three are some of my best disciplemaking friends! From left to right: Jess Bartz, Dave Steinbeck, and Deveraux Hubbard.

If video doesn't appear, go here.
Most people think their kids are exceptional. Mine really are. :  ) Watch the last two laps of this race closely. That's our Aubrey coming in first at indoor state in this heat of the 4x400. Overall, the team got 6th in state… cutting off almost 30 seconds from their previous best time!

"We are the champions… we are the champions…."  Okay, 6th in Indoor State isn't quite "champions" but it's a great big deal where we live.  Congrats ladies!  (Aubrey on right.)

Celebrating the birthdays of my best disciplemaking friends and Cadre staffers Dave and Rennie Garda. I like celebrating with them because they are older than me. They are grandparents (see their newest grand baby there on the right) while Stacy and I are still having babies because we're young. LOL.

It was my honor to join these guys on the radio for WBNH's Share 2012. They must be desperate for guests.

Swinging with some of my girls. Ivy looks like she's digging it.

Doing the Mentoring Connection training for the staff and volunteer leaders of Heartland Community Church in Bloomington/Normal, IL.

Easter Sunday celebration with all of my kids… and my mom (next to Emily), Aunt Betty (my kids had never met her until this day) and my uncle Bob and Aunt Jeanine. It was a great day of celebrating the resurrection of Jesus together.

Libby is playing volleyball… and she means business.  See the "war paint"?

Some of the guys from the Peoria Area Leadership Community Ongoing (plus a few extras).  It was the best lunch ever… and here's what we did.

Last weekend in Ames, IA. Disciplemaking Is Relationships training.

You, Me, and Coffee Monday... 
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Monday, April 23, 2012

On being old and still having babies...

(Picture taken at Chuck E. Cheese.)

I think the words of Homer, that immortal and wise philosopher, are fitting at this time:

"I used to rock and roll all night and party every day. Then it was every other day. Now I'm lucky if I can find half an hour a week in which to get funky."
-- Homer J. Simpson

Let's face it people. I'm getting old.

Here's the good news: I'm not using a cane to walk.

Instead, I'm leaning on my baby's stroller.  Now THAT'S funny.

God has a great sense of humor… and I love Him deeply for it.
I think I'm the richest man in the world… only it's the kind of richness that really counts.

Thank you God.

"Even in old age they will still produce fruit; they will remain vital and green."
—Psalms 92:14

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Monday Funday: Top Ten Worst Small Group Discussion Questions

10. Share the worst sin you’ve ever committed.

9. If you were God, who would you punish first?

8. Which person in this group do you think needs to find Jesus the most?

7. Which people at your church do you wish would find a different church, and why?

6. If you could erase any verse out of the Bible, which one would it be?

5. Share the juiciest piece of gossip you know so we can pray about it.

4. If you could have anything from your neighbor’s house, what would it be?

3. What’s your favorite of The 10 Commandments to break?

2. If you could change anything about your spouse, what would it be?

1. If you could commit any sin and get away with it, what would it be?

* To the best of my knowledge, these came from Eric Metcalf.

Don't miss a single Monday Funday! Get blog posts from Cup O' Joe in your email inbox! You'll hear from me about 1-2x a week. Email addresses are never shared with anyone and you can unsubscribe at anytime. Subscribe to Cup O' Joe with Bill by Email. Thanks for letting us keep in touch with you. 

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Leading when you want to quit...

I was twenty-two years old and in my last year of Bible college when I got a phone call from a senior pastor telling me that the vote to hire me as a church youth pastor was 35 to 5. I liked the 35 part—but was more than a little concerned about the 5 people who voted against the idea of me taking the position. When I told the senior pastor that I was a little worried about the 5 no votes, he said, “You have less no votes than I had when I accepted the call to be the senior pastor of this church!” So, with some apprehension and assurance from my senior pastor, I accepted the position.

During the very first week I served in that church as youth pastor, each of the people who voted against my coming to the church decided to drop in and visit me. They came into my office one at a time and said the most hurtful things—doing their absolute best to discourage me. (Have you ever noticed that some people in church seem to believe that discouragement and criticism are their spiritual gifts—and that they want to use them on you?) “Students will never like you,” one snorted as I imagined little horns starting to protrude from his head. Another told me in no uncertain terms that I was “out of the will of God” for accepting the position — and was so angry that she got her tail caught in the door of my office as she stormed out. Another held her pitchfork tightly and flatly said, “You will ruin this church.”

With the exception of the horns, tail, and pitchfork — everything in this story is as it happened.

In all seriousness, to this day — these many years later, I can still feel the sting of their words — though the hurt is not as sharp as it was once. Let me confess that I spent a full year of Sunday mornings dealing with my bitter emotions. On the outside, I appeared to be okay. But seeing “them” every Sunday wrecked me. Multiple times while my pastor was preaching his heart out, I would silently confess to God the vindictive thoughts that plagued my mind.

It’s no fun to lead when you feel like quitting.

After 35 years of trying to follow Jesus, I know one thing for sure. Discouragement and his ugly cousins, Despair and Depression, will try to sink their sharp bloody teeth into your very soul and take you down for the count. What’s up for grabs is: How will you deal with discouragement when it comes your way?

That’s why you must read this FREE PDF: Leading When You Want to Quit.

This post taken from The Disciplemaker's Guide to Grow, Minister, and Lead.

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Monday, April 09, 2012

Monday Funday: Twitter tweets to make you smile

Below are a few of my Twitter tweets from the last week or so.

Hope these at least make you smile… even just a little.

That would be pretty good... for a Monday.

On April 1st I tweeted this:
"I'm giving up coffee." #aprilfools

After reflecting on all the women in my life and family. I tweeted this:
"Sometimes I ask Siri to do stuff that I could do without her just so I can feel like I'm in charge." #finallyawomanwhodoeswhatisay #jokinghoney #justincasemywifeisreadingthis

After reflecting more about having six daughters and my need for money to pay for weddings, I tweeted this:
"With 6 daughters, I believe in biblical dating... aka parentaly arranged marriages (including a very steep bride price). If you're a young man and interested, contact me at" #lifetimememberofthenra

While sitting in a packed theater with my teenagers and some of their friends, I tweeted this:
"At the Hunger Games movie pretending to be culturally relevant. (This is a movie about a food eating contest, right?)" #ithinkimacoololdguy #embarrassingmykidsandtheirfriends #extrabutterpopcorn

Here's a tweet from my college son who works at a clothing store: 
Older lady: "Do you have this bikini top in an xxl?"
My 19 year old son: "Nope, if it isn't out, we don't have it."
Older lady: "Oh darn, my boobs are too big!"
My 19 year old son: ".... i'm sorry?"

I can tell you right now, homeschooling did not prepare him for this real life situation. However, living at home as the only boy with six sisters did.

What are some of the funniest tweets you've seen? I'd love it if you'd share a couple with me. Click the comment link below… and thanks.

For those so inclined, you can follow me on Twitter by clicking here.

Thursday, April 05, 2012

On community and accountability...

If we ever begin to get following Jesus together, accountability will take care of itself.

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Sunday, April 01, 2012

FREE audio on disciplemaking...

  • What's a Jesus-like disciplemaking way of life look like for regular people? 
  • What happens if we disciple someone who doesn't make more disciples? 
  • Why must disciplemaking start with our own families? 
  • What's the difference between discipleship and disciplemaking? 
  • Are you ever too old to invest your life in disciplemaking with the next generations? 
If you've ever wondered about any of the above, then you'd probably enjoy this FREE, brief, free flowing, and substantive audio conversation.

Go here to download the mp3 for your iPod and sharing freely with others.

* If you want more on Jesus-like disciplemaking and Disciplemaking Learning Communities, go here.