Archive for the ‘friday reflections’ Category

reflections on a Fire Captain

the best part about being in my thirties is that i’ve realized what i like and what i don’t like. i like ice cream, and popcorn (with extra butter), and lazy friday nights with my husband, and cooking, and reading new books, and of course the beach. i don’t like leftovers, and large parties where shallow conversation happens, and bad websites, and chewed gum, and most of all cold weather.

but more than anything else, i know that i like great leadership – and i absolutely can’t stand a situation where less than great leadership is tolerated and expected.

when my husband and i were living in our first apartment, there was a stretch of time (like many many months) when the building’s fire alarm would go off several times in the middle of the night. it was crazy. every night, beginning at 2 AM, this incredibly loud and obnoxious alarm would shriek in our bedroom and we would see red flashing lights, and we would hear doors slamming as people fled their apartments and children crying as their parents carried them down ten flights of stairs in the middle of the night. it was terrible. and it happened every night, 3-4 times per night, for several months. and the best part was there was never actually a fire. every night the system malfunctioned. i’m grateful there was never a fire that destroyed our home. i’m not grateful that the system was not able to function properly.

well you can imagine what began to happen, people started staying in their apartments when the alarm went off.  they knew it wasn’t a real fire, and they weren’t about to continue sacrificing their full eight hours of sleep for a faulty system. but my husband and i are rule followers so we continued to get out of bed every time the alarm went off – Every Time. and i grew to hate that alarm, but more than my hate for that alarm, i hated that no one was leading, and helping us figure out a solution for this terrible problem.

something needed to be done. we needed a leader. so i appointed myself the official Fire Captain of the 10th floor. a Fire Captain would be responsible for checking on the floor each night,and giving leadership and direction when an actual fire was occurring, helping to implement a strategy when real people were in real danger. it was a fabulous idea! and even though no one besides my husband and our next door neighbor knew that i was the official Fire Captain, i now felt confident that in a crisis situation we had a plan, and that someone would be leading in order to care for everyone on the floor.

because, as you know, that’s what happens when you are both blessed and cursed with the gift of leadership. it’s like you can never quite turn it off, even when you are trying desperately just to get a good’s night sleep, instead you must step in and lead. even if it’s a leadership role as silly as the Fire Captain.

i’m in my thirties now which means it’s finally time to be me. to be the leader i was designed to be. and so today, i’m embracing the Fire Captain inside of me. the leader who loves to solve problems, and build teams, and encourage innovative thinking. and today, i vow to celebrate extraordinary leadership and decidedly not tolerate poor leadership.

be blessed, be encouraged, and be reminded: it’s time to be you.


friday favorites

happy friday! it was a great week, filled with hard work and good thinking strategy, and creative tasks starting to take shape, all kinds of my favorite things. i hope your week was filled with a whole heap of things that made you laugh, and smile, and feel extremely proud of yourself!

a few of additional things that made my week:

my friend shauna niequist’sbook bittersweet arrived this week, and it’s absolutely fantastic. shauna writes about change, and grace, and learning lessons the hard way. you must read this book.

i had another opportunity to provide a training for the children’s ministry academy,this week’s topic “creating spaces that are safe and fair for children.” and while i absolutely love what the academy offers children’s leaders, what i love even more is working with the fantastic group of people who run the organization. because of them, i was challenged this week to think about the way i do business.

on wednesday, i spent the afternoon at the painted penguin with my niece kate, as we worked hard to complete a beautifully painted baseball glove statue for grandpa for his birthday. it was a blast! while we were there, a large group of kids came in for a fun summer birthday party. it made me wonder if anyone in children’s ministry had created a similar event for children in the church?!

and finally, i can’t stop thinking about the wonderful message i listened to earlier in the week from alise barrymore called “the faithful doubt.” i’m a big fan of her preaching style, she offers no specific application points but encourages the listener to find his own context in the message, and she speaks in a very rhythmic and almost poetic tone.  the phrase i’ve thought about all week – “god’s plan for the world is comprehensive, creative and complex.” [you can find her message on the willow creek media player.]

so those are just a few things that made my week great, what are your favorite things of this week?

friday reflections 5_7_10

a great week at work upon returning to some normal rythyms after a busy week at the orange conference. big, big week next week at lemon lime kids – check out all the details in the video!

and happy birthday to my husband, kelly – tomorrow, may 8 is his big day! wish him a happy birthday on twitter @KellyDolan

have a great weekend, may you be blessed with love, grace and lots of celebrations!

friday reflections

this week was fun and of course filled with adventure: on wednesday as i headed towards parkview christian church, i discovered there was abotched burglary in the neighborhood and 4 armed men were still at large. there were helicopters, police with riffles, and an all church lockdown happening and this was all before 9 am!  but who needs just a regular old wednesday, right? this was way more fun!

i did have a moment of self-reflection this week. i noticed that i spend a lot of my week shepherding, coaching, and training others. in other words, i spend most of the week not thinking of myself and directing most of my energy towards others. on the weekends when i have a moment to rest, the lack of self-care for myself catches up with me. i need a healthier way to live so i’m going to start journaling at the end of each day: how i feel and how i’m caring for myself. if you can relate with this, or have been in this season before – i would love to hear your thoughts and any tips you might have.

i’m really looking forward to next week on the blog:

monday: build a better (DIGITAL) meeting. many of you have been wondering how to best add virtual participants to your meetings (when someone can’t physically attend a meeting). a few simple tips for preparing and facilitating a meeting with a skype or iChat participant.

tuesday: something fun! i’m not sure what just yet, but it will be light, and breezy, and delightful.

wednesday: i’m excited to post my most recent thoughts on connecting with non-traditional families. please be nice. we might not all agree on this post.

friday: reflections on the week, all in pictures, and spanish, and pig latin, using only symbols. it’s going to be amazing.

i’m grateful for the comments, tweets and emails you send as way of encouraging the conversation going on at this blog. of course, if you have an idea or suggestion for a blog post – let me know!

enjoy the weekend. peace, grace and lemon lime love to you!

friday reflections

happy friday! i’m not sure how your week was, but mine was a bit rough. i never felt like i was working in my groove. i felt tired, and therefore lacked concentration, i felt disorganized, and unable to manage my time well. i despise weeks like this.

and i figured everyone was either frustrated with me or viewing me as totally helpless, until i received an email midway through the week from someone thanking for me for helping them. those simple words lifted my spirit, and reminded me that usually i’m the only one who doesn’t give myself grace. i’m way too hard on myself demanding perfection in everything i do. if god continues to extend grace my way, then i certainly can be a little less hard on myself. next week, i’m going to practice extending large doses of grace my way.  and, if the same might be true for you, here’s a verse we can cling to together:

now god has us where he wants us, with all the time in this world and the next to shower grace and kindness upon us in christ jesus.” ephesians 2:8 (the message)

so here’s hoping to a much better next week! and this is what you can expect next week on this blog:

monday: build a better (CREATIVE) meeting. many of you sent me your best tips for leading a great creative meeting, i’ll add my experience from this week and together we’ll build a great creative meeting.

tuesday: i’ve been excited to post this blog for awhile, i’m glad the day is finally here! i’ll share my thoughts on an article from fast company called “a is for app” how tech is making kids smarter everywhere. i’ll be making specific applications for how the church can utilize technology in teaching children.

wednesday: i’ll be participating in the blog tour for the new book collaborate: family + church. i’ve really enjoyed this book and will share my own thoughts on the topic of partnering with parents in the church.

friday: reflections on the week, and hopefully it will have been a better week than this one so there will be lots of 🙂 and !!

have a great weekend, be blessed and loved, and know that grace is a gift for yourself.

friday news video

hey! happy friday! hope you find today’s friday video informative, nutritious, and enjoyable!

links mentioned in the video:

1. vote for lemon lime kids!

2. register for the orange conference

friday fun!

happy friday! i hope that your week was filled with work that used your gifts to their full potential, and that you are able to head into the weekend knowing that your efforts will make a difference in the lives of children and families.

i watched the new what’s in the bible? dvd series several times this week and without fail, the theme song would get stuck in my head every time. it’s very catchy.

and so now i pass the fun on to you!

here’s to a weekend of singing, “do you know what’s in the bible, is it true, it is reliable?”