Five Steps To Overcoming the “Jolts” of Life

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When disaster strikes our life, we’re often simply overwhelmed.  As we saw during the 2011 tsunami in Japan, entire towns were wiped off the map, and all these years later, we’re still seeing news reports of problems with the clean up. When a country like that is in chaos, where do we begin when problems happen? Even more important, how do we deal with the “meltdowns” we face in our lives? In my book “Jolt! Get the Jump on a World That’s Constantly Changing” I show you how to

Editing Matters to Everyone – Not Just Filmmakers

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Just a tidbit:  Since 1981, movies that have won the Academy Award for Best Picture often also won the award for Best Editing.  No matter how well a scene is shot, acted, or directed; without editing, it won’t amount to much. Editing determines the rhythm and pacing of a scene. How music will engage the story. The impact of a particular line of dialogue. It keeps a scene moving. The truth is,

The Most Misunderstood Role in Ministry: The Executive Pastor

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After decades working with churches around the world, I’ve discovered one of the most difficult challenges pastors face is finding the right “Executive Pastor.”  Smaller churches don’t usually need one, but as churches grow, a leader in that role becomes more and more important.  But in a significant number of cases, local pastors don’t really understand the job. In my opinion, one of the best XP’s in the country is Mike Buster, Executive Pastor at Prestonwood Church in Plano, Texas. He’s worked with Pastor Jack Graham for 28 years, and they’ve become a remarkable team. In fact, in my opinion,

Why 2015 Will Be The Year of Online Video

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A great number of media organizations are touting 2015 as the “Year of Digital Video.” Most of these predictions refer to the broad range of videos, movies, advertising, and other online content that is exploding on multiple platforms. But there’s plenty of reasons that 2015 will be the year of online video for churches, ministries, and nonprofits as well:

Be Careful Before Starting a Lawsuit Over a Social Media Post

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I’ve spent time on this blog warning social media users about inappropriate posts.  But should a church, nonprofit, or company start a lawsuit over a critical social media post?  According to recent news reports, employers are experiencing real challenges when they try to sue employees – even when those employees are critical of the companies they work for.  Even when people Facebook or Twitter bad news about

Four Things Influencers Should Know About Trust

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When it comes to leadership and influence, we rarely talk about trust. When we do, it’s usually in terms of honesty and integrity. Questions like: “Can I trust you to honor your word?” or “Can you be trusted with finances?” usually come to mind. Those questions are important, but the truth is, trust is a far deeper issue, and when it comes to your team, employees, congregation, or followers, trust may be the single most important connection you can build. To achieve that connection, here’s four principles every leader and influencer should know:

Have An Oscar Party – At Your Church?

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Recently, as I’ve been speaking at conferences and events around the world I’ve been urging Christians to stop looking at Hollywood as the enemy, and start looking at Hollywood as a mission field. After all, what if Christians stopped just criticizing, and actually started praying for the most influential industry in the world? Something amazing might happen. But that’s long been the focus of two very effective ministry organizations based in Hollywood: The Hollywood Prayer Network and Mastermedia International. Now, both organizations are asking churches to do something many would never expect:

What Were People Searching For in 2014?

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Our friends at Google have posted the subjects people searched for the most in 2014.  It’s set up by category so you can browse through the different areas and drill down to more specifics.  There’s enormous information here for articles, blog posts, sermons, and essays.  Scientific American also posted some interesting insights as well as trending subjects that were searched on Google.  But remember, “Search” isn’t everything.  As Leon Wieseltier recently wrote in a brilliant piece in The New York Times:

The 5 Keys To A Successful Relationship with a Creative Consultant or Vendor

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I am often a “vendor.” That means our company, Cooke Pictures is hired by churches, ministry organizations, and nonprofits to consult with them on issues related to creativity, media, and engaging their communities. We advise them on a wide range of issues, from video and short film production, social media, book publishing, the Internet and more. Essentially we help organizations