Life On All 8 Cylinders

Today a thought came to my mind.

Life requires you to run on all 8 cylinders.

My first car was a v6.  It had some get up and go, it was a dodge intrepid.  Since then I’ve owned all 4 cylinder cars.  My best friend growing up had a v8 in high school.  A champagne colored Cadillac.  We once got the gas pedal stuck to the floor on a road that was only 30 miles an hour.

The rest of my thought was that I feel like I’m running on maybe 1 and on a good day 2 cylinders lately.  It’s strange, when life requires the most discipline you don’t feel as though you have the energy to give it.

If you want the key to discouraging me, tell me what I’m doing has no purpose.  But I don’t need you to tell me that, when these fall blues come my mind breathes that lie to me every few seconds.  The blog the podcast, they aren’t what you’d thought they would be, they aren’t matching up to the ideal you had in your mind.  I’m guessing every dreamer can relate to this stage of the game.

I’ve shared this with you before.  My biggest struggle and hurdle to overcome is not believing the lie that screams what I’m putting my hand to is not worth it.

I feel best when I believe the work I’m doing has an impact, that it’s valuable and benefiting the world.  That’s when I do my best work.

When I accept the lie that what I’m doing is meaningless, then every task becomes an overwhelming burden.  The easier route is to disengage, withdrawal, and try to slap bandaids on your hurts in the form of whatever will make you “feel” better.  Sugary caffeinated beverages in hope that you’ll find or feel inspiration in that.

Maybe you can relate.  Or maybe this will just give you insight in how to pray for me in this season.  Luckily I know this is just a season.  And soon I’ll be back at it, inspired, dreaming even bigger dreams, producing work, and feeling on cloud 9.

JoannaOctober 23, 2015 - 10:38 am

Praying for you my friend.

Jim BakerOctober 23, 2015 - 11:29 am

thanks Joanna! Articulating what was going on and getting it published help propel me forward a lot. Getting unstuck requires movement.

Linky Wednesday 10.21.15

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Blogging from my new computer that someone recently gifted to me.  A 2012 13″ macbook pro.

Last week I Jess and I changed the brake pads on our car.  And I swapped out my solid state hard drive from my old computer to my new computer.  I’m feeling quite accomplished.  Two projects that I have never done before on my own.

If you don’t have a solid state hard drive in your computer, this will GREATLY speed your computer up.  iFixit.com can help you with what parts you’ll need and how to swap  your hard drive out.

 

 

If you’re looking for a super easy way to help us out, click on this link and bookmark it as your amazon homepage.  Shop as normal and at no extra cost to you we will get a small percentage of your sale.

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If you haven’t already check out this weeks episode of Doing Ministry Well! This week we interview Mark Parsons a missionary in Thailand, he shares 3 tips to doing ministry well.  Check it out.   If you haven’t yet PLEASE rate, comment and subscribe on Itunes to keep up with the most recent episodes!

 

I’ll get back to posting some blog posts that I’ve enjoyed soon…

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Linky Wednesdsay 10.14.2015

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Crazy month.  Travel, broken water heater, flat tire, dead hard drive.  No travel at all this week so I decided to just lay low and rest since I was starting to feel the fall time blues.  Even deactivated my Facebook account.

I’ve been doing some things to make the new car we’re borrowing and will buy soon our own.  Easy upgrades that make driving a bit safer.  Replacing headlights, cleaning up the headlights, cleaning the windows real well, replacing windshield wipers.  It’s great to have some work that I can do that where my mind can just detox, it’s much needed.

I think I might even attempt to replace the brakes. $25 for brake pads or $190 at the shop…  it’ll require some tool costs up front but I think it will be worth it.  Moving stinks, I know I have some of these tools in Maryland, Ohio or South Carolina… oh well.

Was trying to back up my computers hard drive so I could transfer it over to the new computer.  I thought I lost all of my unpublished episodes of doing ministry well in the process this morning.  Luckily I didn’t, but a 1 TB hard drive died in the process.  As soon as I transfer the files, I’ll start using my new computer!  I’m going to have to learn how to pop in my solid state drive into the new computer though.   It’s nice that external hard drives have gone down in price.  I’ll be replacing it with this:

 

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If you haven’t already check out this weeks episode of Doing Ministry Well! This week we interview Mike Heath who was always an encouragement to me.  He talks about world missions and shares 3 tips to doing ministry well.  Check it out.   If you haven’t yet PLEASE rate, comment and subscribe on Itunes to keep up with the most recent episodes!

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Linky Wednesday 10.07.15

 

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We’ve been doing a lot of traveling lately that’s why the blog has been neglected.  Sorry I missed last week’s linky wednesday.  Please check out last weeks Doing Ministry Well interview with Keith Stancil who just released a new book.

Fall has fallen, and we had a pretty gray day the other day.  Jess and I both felt the effect of no sun and we both mentioned it’s probably time to start taking some vitamin D.  So here’s what we ordered on amazon.

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I thought this was pretty cool.  That pygmy scale is pretty awesome and so is the cas cas.

 

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If you haven’t already check out this weeks episode of Doing Ministry Well! This week we interview Bryan Switalski who always inspires me.  He talks about the importance of visual design in ministry and shares 3 tips to doing ministry well.  Check it out.   If you haven’t yet PLEASE rate, comment and subscribe on Itunes to keep up with the most recent episodes!

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The Kind Of People You Should Never Take Advice From – Blog by Michael Hyatt

 

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3 Tips For A More Successful Life

One thing I’ve really desired and battled for is a consistent morning routine.

Michael Hyatt wrote on this topic a lot.  He brought up a great point that once the day starts it’s hard to get the things done that you want to do, so you need to get them done in the morning before the day starts.

There are 3 things that I want to be a part of my day that are hard to do, but that I want to do.

Exercise.  Reading.  Writing.

Once the day starts and there’s a million different things asking for my attention, exercise gets thrown out the window.  I want to do that, but I don’t really want to do it, so it’s easy to make an excuse saying I’m too busy to do it.

Reading.  I want to READ a lot more.  I want to read the Bible more, and I want to read books more.  I want to be a learner.  But once my day has started and my mind is going a lot of different directions, it’s hard to focus and quiet myself enough to read.  Therefore I’ve got to read in the stillness of the morning.

Writing.  I want to write more.  But just like reading, writing takes focus.  And focus is hard to come by once you’ve checked your e-mail and are being pulled in a bunch of different directions.

Here’s 3 tips that help me in my morning routine.

1.  Be prepared the night before

Go to bed at a decent hour.  If you’re burning the midnight oil, you aren’t going to wake up refreshed and ready to do your morning routine.  Have everything set up ready to go so you can easily roll into your routine.  Water already in the kettle, coffee grounds in the french press, reading and writing materials out and ready to go, socks and shoes by the door.  Early planning, removes obstacles between you and success.

2.  Set an alarm

If I just rely on waking up when I wake up, it doesn’t provide a hard start to the day for me.  But if my alarm goes off and jolts me awake then I can get the day started appropriately.  This morning when my alarm went off I battled with myself, it was still dark out, today’s my day off, but I reminded myself that successful men wake up early and I want to be a successful man.

3.  Don’t get on the internet

Nothing will distiract and deter you from what you want to do like the interent.  I used to check e-mail and social media while still in bed.  The problem is that it pulls my mind in a million different directions making it hard to focus.  So part of my night before routine is to turn off the wifi on my iPod which is my alarm, and and off of my computer which is my reading and writing device.

Do you have a consistent morning routine?  What helps you be successful?  Let us know in the comments.

Linky Wednesday 09.23.15

Happy 21st birthday to my nephew Stephen:) Proud of you and love you!  Be safe tonight!

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Father and daughter beatboxing!  Amazing!

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If you haven’t already check out this weeks episode of Doing Ministry Well!  This week we interview “K”.  K is a missionary in a muslim nation in Asia.  She talks in this interview about being robbed and shot.  Check it out.   If you haven’t yet PLEASE rate, comment and subscribe on Itunes to keep up with the most recent episodes!

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“Never limit your vision based on your current resources.” – Michael Hyatt

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The Secret to Ben Carson’s Success –> http://bit.ly/1Mj7AgO

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Josh Duggar, Ashely Madison & The Gospel

A few weeks ago, you probably saw that Josh Duggar made the news again.  This time because he was part of an affair website that hackers exposed.

You can read his statement here.

I don’t intend to make light of what Josh did, what he did was wrong, but I want to give us strategy to fight against the temptations of the world.  Because our big action’s don’t just happen, there are steps that lead to that destruction.

The gospel, the good news, at it’s core EXPOSES our depravity and NEED for grace.

The good news is that God alone is Holy and perfect and pure and without the finished sacrifice of Christ we are completely helpless and full of wretchedness.  The righteousness that we get, is a gift of grace from the Lord.

What if our war for morality started with empathy.  What if instead of us touting our righteousness (which was a free gift and nothing earned) we related with peoples struggle.

Wasn’t that God’s way of doing it?  Didn’t He send His son to walk among us, to be tempted in every way but still choose the ways of God because He had a revelation of how good God’s plan is?

The human condition is that we’re all searching for something.  Love and acceptance.  We’re all orphans looking for a Father.

If you got quiet right now and reread that sentence and were real with yourself you’d realize what I’m writing is true.

So in our search for love and acceptance we run to anything that appears to give us that.

God loves us, and accepts us because of Christ’s sacrifice, but it doesn’t stop there.  In His goodness He transforms us, He doesn’t let us stay the same.

You don’t want God to just accept you as you are.  You want God to transform you.

There’s a huge difference between a gracious loving God and a god that accepts you by condoning all that you do.

Our problem Christians is we are not exemplifying the GOODNESS of God.  And we forget to be honest about our struggles.

God’s ways ARE better.  We’re trading in all of our broken junk ways that don’t work, hasn’t worked and will never work for pure gold.

Our temptations do not identify us.  Jesus was TEMPTED in every way but was without sin.  The devil wants us to make us think that temptations are our identity.  Because once we say this is who we are, then that is what we do.

I’m in full time ministry and have been for the past decade and I’m still tempted daily with things I know are wrong.  Sometimes the battle rages and I win, and sometimes I don’t.  I am daily in need of grace.  But just because an idea pops into my head doesn’t mean that I am that temptation.

We have to bring our struggles into the light.  If you are struggling with a recurring temptation, share that with someone you can trust.  When we allow things to stay in the darkness it grows.  We feel ashamed because we’re tempted and we think that no one else is tempted in that way, but it’s not true.  We can’t do it alone.  Maybe someone has been through what you’re going through and has a practical strategy to overcome.

Sin is sin.  It’s choosing other than God intends.  We need to know the nature and character of God and learn that He is so trustworthy and good.  And then the decision to choose His ways is easier.

Remind yourself of what the gospel is.  Be honest.  Lead with empathy.  And get your struggles into the light.

Praying for Josh Duggar.  Praying for those people that think having an affair will fulfill them.  It won’t.  Praying that we’d see and exemplify how good God is.

Thoughts?  Leave a comment and let us know.

ugh… linky thursday?

Sorry guys missed Linky Wednesday again.

I’m having a hard time blogging lately.  Pray for me.

This week Doing Ministry Well interviewed Jhun Camacho who is Filipino and was a missionary to India for 20 years.

And this week I shared our friend Shannon’s blog.  We met Shannon when she came on  the stateside missions trip we ran last summer.  Here’s a snippet of her recent blog post.

“To my dear husband whom I have yet to meet, thank you for understanding that even though I’ve put myself into some not-so-great situations with men, I’ve still always wanted you.”

Read the full blog here.

What’s Been Exciting You Lately? Coins for me!

12031566_10156108063245565_1069082520398220831_oI’ve been trying for the past couple of hours to sit down and write something profound.  It’s not happening.  I can’t bring myself to finish blog posts I’ve started… so I’m just going to write about what has been exciting me recently.

I’ve started collecting coins.

I coin collected as a kid, I had a few of those penny books where you put the pennies in by year.  I’ve asked my parents to find them in the attic so when I go see them over Thanksgiving I can pick up where I left off.

A few years ago I started getting interested in “junk silver.”  I remember my dad had some silver coins, he said some guy came into the store he was working at and paid for something with silver dimes.  He gave me a few and I think one time when I moved I was in a hurry and just tossed them somewhere.  Moving makes you do things you regret and we’ve moved a lot.  -sigh-

I think every young boy loves the stories of pirates and treasure.  Maybe that’s why I think silver is so cool.  Because otherwise it really doesn’t make sense to pay more money for less money.

A friend of mine tweeted that her grandfather passed away and in the will told them that he hidden silver dollars somewhere in the house and they were for the grandkids if they could find them.  It’s been years and they still haven’t found them.  ADVENTURE!

I thought it’d be cool to give my each of my grandkids a small burlap bag of treasure when I’m old.  Who knows if they’d appreciate it or not.

I decided a couple of years ago I would use any birthday money I got to buy junk silver.  I’ve bought a little bit from a couple of different places.  My first purchase was online, and I got ripped off.  High premium for using a credit card, and then shipping.  Then I found a guy on craigslist that gave me a pretty good deal.  Then I heard about a place here in Tennessee and bought a bit from them but the almost 10% tax here kills that.  And once a bank teller friend of mine when I asked if she ever found any said she had just pulled some and was going to trade it in, but since I was interested in them I could have them!

So I’ve been learning a little bit here and there.  I’ve been asking for halves at the bank when I go in.  Any half dollars pre 1971 have some amount of silver in them.  Any quarters or dimes pre 65 have silver in them.

I look through my change to see if there is anything interesting.  It’s fun.  I watched a youtube video of a guy going through a box of $500 worth of halves and he found a few silver.  You know your a coin dork if you watch other people searching for silver and get excited for them.

I have yet to find any silver, but I’m going to keep looking.  I heard dollar bills with stars in the serial numbers are rare, but I found two today.

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Anyway, that’s what I’ve been getting excited about recently.  It’s good to have a hobby.  What have YOU been excited about lately?  Do you have a hobby? Are you a coin collector? Comment and let us know.

Linky Wednesday 09/09/15

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Highlights from the Global Leadership Summit, I should try and go to this next year.  My favorite quote from this video was “Longevity is perhaps the greatest strength that everyone can have as a leader.” – Brian Houston

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If you haven’t already check out this weeks episode of Doing Ministry Well!  This week we interview Kimiyo Brown.  Kimiyo is on staff with CRU at the University of Hawaii, she shares about her ministry and 3 practical steps on how to do ministry well.  If you haven’t yet PLEASE rate, comment and subscribe on Itunes to keep up with the most recent episodes!

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21 Things You’ll Never Regret As a Leader – Carey Nieuwhof

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This article convicted me.  In the day and age of Facebook warriors.  What are you willing to go peacefully protest and spend 10 years of your life in jail for?  –> Linda Gibbons arrested again outside Morgentaler abortion facility http://bit.ly/1L6cHOa

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