Monthly Archives: October 2010

#1 way for us to be Spiritual NOT Religious

This past year Shawn and I went to a Spiritual renewal retreat lodge in Colorado for 10 days. It was life altering! We felt like our Bachelor of Arts in Theology and 12 years of experience in “full time” ministry dimmed in comparison to the fullness of the Word we received 12-14 hours a day for 10 days.

One of the books that was part of our daily curriculum was, “The Valley of Vision”. It is simply a collaboration of Puritan’s journaled Prayers. To hear them repent for the need to repent among other cries for God’s Mercy and Grace stunned me. These particular puritan’s, not that all were this way, were consumed with their own Holiness. Their focus wasn’t on others need to be Holy but their own need. They knew if they caught flame, others would follow but it was their responsibility to check their motives, heart, desires not just first…..but period. They were aware that they had so many sinful ways as flesh of flesh that they could spend all day everyday working on themselves. It was introspection, Fear of God, trembling in His presence. Who were they to judge others if they felt unworthy themselves? That is where God wanted them…aware of their unworthiness and their need for Him.

We have come so far from the pure fear of working out our own salvation that we honestly feel it is our duty to work other’s out for them. Many have become dependent on men and women “of the cloth” and in turn feel responsible for someone else’s sanctification.

This is Religion. It is saying I want to have a fence built around me by man- made rules and obligations so it is simple and fool proof. Next step is I need to get that fence around those who become Christians so myself and my earthly leader can prove this faith is “fool-proof”. We must realize we are fools, and those who don’t know Christ yet may really look foolish but I’m not the wise guy to change em! We want so bad to control any bad thing that may come our way, and don’t see that delima’s allow God to turn us in the direction of our true destiny if we let HIM! (One of my next blogs will go into Delima’s Links To Destiny.)

We also feel obligated as Religious people to “take a stand against sin”, in fact we hear that preached often. It’s always a sermon that will get the Pastor some “Amen’s” and a “Preach it” here and there. Problem is, we believe we are making a difference “taking a stand” against sinners through picketing and making stern comments when opportunity arises. Shouldn’t we first take a stand against that darn plank in our own eye before we hold up our angry sign with a plank?

I recently was surprised to hear about a great Pastor we know who was rallying his congregation to show up and picket a topless bar. I asked Shawn if he thought the same time from the pulpit could be spent receiving an offering so some lovely church ladies could take money and hand it to one of the girls going into the bar to work a shift. This could be the “seed” God is sending to end the cycle of their need for this paralyzing career. The money may help a single mom support herself and poor babies so she can get out of the job that makes her a lot of money a night.

Oh, I know what most are thinking, “You don’t know what she will do with that money”….hold up right there…. is that us determining she answers to us not God? And how many preachers have used our offerings for the hotel bills to stay with one of these girls…ouch, that was just mean, I know! Sorry 🙂
(Another one of my next blogs will be on How Meanness has a History.)

Anywhoo, if we Religious folk (I act it too at times) would focus as much on ourselves and our holiness as a “sinner” saying “to each his own”, we would ooze with Love and Mercy for others. Our heart would break for what breaks His!
There is no way you can be on your knees and in the Word and walk away looking for a sinner to reprimand. So I contend that those who find me too liberal or easy on sin or who are disgusted by “sinners” have not been with Jesus lately because you would be crying not raging. Jesus only ever got angry at Pharisees, Saducees, and temple workers…oh and at the devil.

Another benefit to working on your own Holiness, ie. Spirituality is you will rarely be grouped in with “hypocrites” because we are to busy working on ourselves to flap BIG Religious Jowls. Huge thing you can say for Jesus, He was a man of few words and many questions. His ears were at least as big as his mouth. I think Religious people have UFC cauliflower ears that are closing up the more they fight people!

With love and gentleness….;D

Sonny
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry


#1 way for us to be Spiritual NOT Religious

This past year Shawn and I went to a Spiritual renewal retreat lodge in Colorado for 10 days. It was life altering! We felt like our Bachelor of Arts in Theology and 12 years of experience in “full time” ministry dimmed in comparison to the fullness of the Word we received 12-14 hours a day for 10 days.

One of the books that was part of our daily curriculum was, “The Valley of Vision”. It is simply a collaboration of Puritan’s journaled Prayers. To hear them repent for the need to repent among other cries for God’s Mercy and Grace stunned me. These particular puritan’s, not that all were this way, were consumed with their own Holiness. Their focus wasn’t on others need to be Holy but their own need. They knew if they caught flame, others would follow but it was their responsibility to check their motives, heart, desires not just first…..but period. They were aware that they had so many sinful ways as flesh of flesh that they could spend all day everyday working on themselves. It was introspection, Fear of God, trembling in His presence. Who were they to judge others if they felt unworthy themselves? That is where God wanted them…aware of their unworthiness and their need for Him.

We have come so far from the pure fear of working out our own salvation that we honestly feel it is our duty to work other’s out for them. Many have become dependent on men and women “of the cloth” and in turn feel responsible for someone else’s sanctification.

This is Religion. It is saying I want to have a fence built around me by man- made rules and obligations so it is simple and fool proof. Next step is I need to get that fence around those who become Christians so myself and my earthly leader can prove this faith is “fool-proof”. We must realize we are fools, and those who don’t know Christ yet may really look foolish but I’m not the wise guy to change em! We want so bad to control any bad thing that may come our way, and don’t see that delima’s allow God to turn us in the direction of our true destiny if we let HIM! (One of my next blogs will go into Delima’s Links To Destiny.)

We also feel obligated as Religious people to “take a stand against sin”, in fact we hear that preached often. It’s always a sermon that will get the Pastor some “Amen’s” and a “Preach it” here and there. Problem is, we believe we are making a difference “taking a stand” against sinners through picketing and making stern comments when opportunity arises. Shouldn’t we first take a stand against that darn plank in our own eye before we hold up our angry sign with a plank?

I recently was surprised to hear about a great Pastor we know who was rallying his congregation to show up and picket a topless bar. I asked Shawn if he thought the same time from the pulpit could be spent receiving an offering so some lovely church ladies could take money and hand it to one of the girls going into the bar to work a shift. This could be the “seed” God is sending to end the cycle of their need for this paralyzing career. The money may help a single mom support herself and poor babies so she can get out of the job that makes her a lot of money a night.

Oh, I know what most are thinking, “You don’t know what she will do with that money”….hold up right there…. is that us determining she answers to us not God? And how many preachers have used our offerings for the hotel bills to stay with one of these girls…ouch, that was just mean, I know! Sorry 🙂
(Another one of my next blogs will be on How Meanness has a History.)

Anywhoo, if we Religious folk (I act it too at times) would focus as much on ourselves and our holiness as a “sinner” saying “to each his own”, we would ooze with Love and Mercy for others. Our heart would break for what breaks His!
There is no way you can be on your knees and in the Word and walk away looking for a sinner to reprimand. So I contend that those who find me too liberal or easy on sin or who are disgusted by “sinners” have not been with Jesus lately because you would be crying not raging. Jesus only ever got angry at Pharisees, Saducees, and temple workers…oh and at the devil.

Another benefit to working on your own Holiness, ie. Spirituality is you will rarely be grouped in with “hypocrites” because we are to busy working on ourselves to flap BIG Religious Jowls. Huge thing you can say for Jesus, He was a man of few words and many questions. His ears were at least as big as his mouth. I think Religious people have UFC cauliflower ears that are closing up the more they fight people!

With love and gentleness….;D

Sonny
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry


911 – Are They Texting Now?

I mean what can be soooo important that a girl can’t even get through a cup of coffee with a friend without being demoted below a cell phone in priorities? Can we really not put our cell phone on silent and keep it out of sight for a short time? I want to scream “Will you please get off your electronic idol while I am with you!!” Goll! We need to add “Electronics’ Etiquette” to the list of needed life manuals along with  “How to be a Parent”. The Bible covers the parenting issues if we actually took the principles to heart and perhaps simply “The Golden Rule” should be THE standard for Electronics’ Etiquette.

Plain and simple, I feel neglected, unimportant and boring when the person I am with is on an electronic device. And I don’t just feel those feelings when someone is on them too much, because what is too much? To the person on the device they don’t feel they are on it too much, but to the recipient of this avoidance, once is plenty!  My love language has been proven time and again to be Quality Time. Coming in 2nd  is Words of Affirmation. So it is clear to see that someone wrapped up in texting or talking on the phone or playing with their phone or ipad robs from our quality time and also cuts conversation short. 

I remember when I thought call waiting was rude as I would be in the middle of a sentence and cut off to, “hold on, hold on, just a sec” and they would click over before I could say “no thanks, I won’t hold a sec”.  I’m not very old but I can remember when an answering machine graced my childhood home. Before that if people tried to get in touch with you, they called your house and if it rang and rang they figured they would call back. They didn’t hold against you not picking up. Old school answering machines began the culture of, “Did you get my message” interrogation in that naggy motherly voice. Now, if you don’t answer a text or your cell within seconds you are tagged as someone who never replies and ignores calls. Oh, I am sorry I am not at your beckon call. I may be in the restroom or tending to my FAMILY. Shawn, as a Senior Pastor, was constantly chastised that he couldn’t be gotten a hold of.  Ever want to be anonymous sometimes?

 I can’t spend this whole blog denying it is nice to have quick access to people myself but what I am trying to drive home is that we need to know when it is ok to put the phone away (please turn on silent) and just be with people in the flesh. Even though we can keep in touch with people through facebook, texts, etc. relationships come through flesh and blood contact. We need it, it is how we were created to thrive and grow. I need my uninterrupted coffee dates. I need a long lunch without getting cut off in the middle of a sentence because a tweet dings on their phone! I think I am more important that a tweet that can be viewed later. My friends are worth silencing my phone. As I wrote in my last blog; Aubree thinks her teacher is nicer when parent’s are around because “she doesn’t want her job cancelled”…..don’t have a friendship canceled over an electronic, that’s just sad.

 

This manual request by: Sonny Hennessy

*Next unavailable manual I am requesting: “How people over 50 can learn to shut off their cell phones in meetings and church” and the follow up manual “How people over 50 don’t have to answer their phone, stand up and say “I’m in church” before they walk out.”

 


2.2 Billion Dollar Loss May Deem Facebook as Social “Not”working

Last night Shawn and I went to see The Social Network. It was fascinating to see the uprising of facebook and how money disconnected the two friends who invested a lot of time and a little money to launch it. Napster co-founder Sean Parker eventually encouraged genius and master coder Mark Zuckerberg to ditch his best friend as the business grew. It all began as a tool to link college students at Harvard and now even grandparents are posting! It is a phenomenon unlikely to be matched or surpassed. It is also addictive and destructive if you aren’t careful.

Like any good thing, getting consumed with it can be counterproductive and may even cost you your job, at the very least your productivity. I heard on the local radio this past week that surveys show that it is taking 15 hours to complete 8 hours of work due to social networking, texting and instant Messaging at work. I decided to do some research on this and see if it were true. I have a few friends whose companies blocked and/or monitored their internet activity to make sure they were not on facebook or twitter.

In my research I found that International Business Times reported this week: “A 2009 study by Nucleus Research found that Facebook alone costs companies 1.5 percent of total productivity. Some employees in the study used Facebook as much as two hours a day while at work. Of the 237 employees surveyed, 77 percent who had Facebook accounts visited the site during the work day and 87 percent of those did not have a clear business reason for accessing the site. Research released by Morse, an IT services and technology company, has shown that the use of Twitter and other social networks by employees at work costs businesses in the United Kingdom the equivalent of $2.2 billion each year in lost productivity. From the 1,460 office workers surveyed, more than half (57 percent) said that they used social networking sites during the working day for personal reasons. Almost four in ten people use social media networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter while at work and over a quarter of those surveyed admitted that their use of these sites was becoming a bad habit.”

The website Nucleus Research provided me with a pdf of the survey report that was referenced above. I want to add insult to injury for any Christ followers reading and guilty of this “oversight”, you should know better! Our standard is, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart as working for the Lord”, and most importantly, “Do Not Steal”. I am anxious to tell you, stealing time for work for personal leisure is still stealing. Let’s not give people grounds for not wanting to be like “us”! Let’s be so honest, hardworking and loyal to whoever we answer to under God (which is ALL bosses-even if you don’t like em) that people admire us and aspire to our ethics rather than giving them a reason to group us into the “bad” bunch.

Let me leave you with something very profound: My daughter came home from school the other day and said “Mommy, my teacher is mean when it is just us kids wif her, she is way nicer when parents are around cuz she doesn’t want to get her job cancelled”. Don’t get your job cancelled over facebook…..that’s just embarrassing!


911 – Are They Texting Now?

I mean what can be soooo important that a girl can’t even get through a cup of coffee with a friend without being demoted below a cell phone in priorities? Can we really not put our cell phone on silent and keep it out of sight for a short time? I want to scream “Will you please get off your electronic idol while I am with you!!” Goll! We need to add “Electronics’ Etiquette” to the list of needed life manuals along with  “How to be a Parent”. The Bible covers the parenting issues if we actually took the principles to heart and perhaps simply “The Golden Rule” should be THE standard for Electronics’ Etiquette.

Plain and simple, I feel neglected, unimportant and boring when the person I am with is on an electronic device. And I don’t just feel those feelings when someone is on them too much, because what is too much? To the person on the device they don’t feel they are on it too much, but to the recipient of this avoidance, once is plenty!  My love language has been proven time and again to be Quality Time. Coming in 2nd is Words of Affirmation. So it is clear to see that someone wrapped up in texting or talking on the phone or playing with their phone or ipad robs from our quality time and also cuts conversation short.

I remember when I thought call waiting was rude as I would be in the middle of a sentence and cut off to, “hold on, hold on, just a sec” and they would click over before I could say “no thanks, I won’t hold a sec”.  I’m not very old but I can remember when an answering machine graced my childhood home. Before that if people tried to get in touch with you, they called your house and if it rang and rang they figured they would call back. They didn’t hold against you not picking up. Old school answering machines began the culture of, “Did you get my message” interrogation in that naggy motherly voice. Now, if you don’t answer a text or your cell within seconds you are tagged as someone who never replies and ignores calls. Oh, I am sorry I am not at your beckon call. I may be in the restroom or tending to my FAMILY. Shawn, as a Senior Pastor, was constantly chastised that he couldn’t be gotten a hold of.  Ever want to be anonymous sometimes?

I can’t spend this whole blog denying it is nice to have quick access to people myself but what I am trying to drive home is that we need to know when it is ok to put the phone away (please turn on silent) and just be with people in the flesh. Even though we can keep in touch with people through facebook, texts, etc. relationships come through flesh and blood contact. We need it, it is how we were created to thrive and grow. I need my uninterrupted coffee dates. I need a long lunch without getting cut off in the middle of a sentence because a tweet dings on their phone! I think I am more important that a tweet that can be viewed later. My friends are worth silencing my phone. As I wrote in my last blog; Aubree thinks her teacher is nicer when parent’s are around because “she doesn’t want her job cancelled”…..don’t have a friendship canceled over an electronic, that’s just sad.

 

This manual request by: Sonny Hennessy

*Next unavailable manual I am requesting: “How people over 50 can learn to shut off their cell phones in meetings and church” and the follow up manual “How people over 50 don’t have to answer their phone, stand up and say “I’m in church” before they walk out.”

 


2.2 Billion Dollar Loss May Deem Facebook as Social “Not”working

Last night Shawn and I went to see The Social Network. It was fascinating to see the uprising of facebook and how money disconnected the two friends who invested a lot of time and a little money to launch it. Napster co-founder Sean Parker eventually encouraged genius and master coder Mark Zuckerberg to ditch his best friend as the business grew. It all began as a tool to link college students at Harvard and now even grandparents are posting! It is a phenomenon unlikely to be matched or surpassed. It is also addictive and destructive if you aren’t careful.

Like any good thing, getting consumed with it can be counterproductive and may even cost you your job, at the very least your productivity. I heard on the local radio this past week that surveys show that it is taking 15 hours to complete 8 hours of work due to social networking, texting and instant Messaging at work. I decided to do some research on this and see if it were true. I have a few friends whose companies blocked and/or monitored their internet activity to make sure they were not on facebook or twitter.

In my research I found that International Business Times reported this week: “A 2009 study by Nucleus Research found that Facebook alone costs companies 1.5 percent of total productivity. Some employees in the study used Facebook as much as two hours a day while at work. Of the 237 employees surveyed, 77 percent who had Facebook accounts visited the site during the work day and 87 percent of those did not have a clear business reason for accessing the site. Research released by Morse, an IT services and technology company, has shown that the use of Twitter and other social networks by employees at work costs businesses in the United Kingdom the equivalent of $2.2 billion each year in lost productivity. From the 1,460 office workers surveyed, more than half (57 percent) said that they used social networking sites during the working day for personal reasons. Almost four in ten people use social media networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter while at work and over a quarter of those surveyed admitted that their use of these sites was becoming a bad habit.”

The website Nucleus Research provided me with a pdf of the survey report that was referenced above. I want to add insult to injury for any Christ followers reading and guilty of this “oversight”, you should know better! Our standard is, “Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart as working for the Lord”, and most importantly, “Do Not Steal”. I am anxious to tell you, stealing time for work for personal leisure is still stealing. Let’s not give people grounds for not wanting to be like “us”! Let’s be so honest, hardworking and loyal to whoever we answer to under God (which is ALL bosses-even if you don’t like em) that people admire us and aspire to our ethics rather than giving them a reason to group us into the “bad” bunch.

Let me leave you with something very profound: My daughter came home from school the other day and said “Mommy, my teacher is mean when it is just us kids wif her, she is way nicer when parents are around cuz she doesn’t want to get her job cancelled. Don’t get your job cancelled over facebook…..that’s just embarrassing!


I live with Monkeys!

Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry