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Digest More Leadership Books with The Vision Room’s SUMS reMix

SUMS reMix RewiredI am a big believer that leaders must be readers. But you probably have the same problem I do – more books are calling my name than I have time to digest. Sometimes I need help in knowing which are the best, and sometimes I just wish for a summary. Either way, if you’re a leader, you need to subscribe to The Vision Room’s SUMS reMix! From their website:

That’s why, for the last two years Auxano has been bringing you SUMS: Book Summaries for Church Leaders. We have been distilling the best content just for church leaders like you, and giving you immediate and practical action steps.

Now we are taking the SUMS tool to a whole new level. Every other week you can receive, not ONE, but THREE book “summaries” all focused around solving a practical church leadership problem. It’s called SUMS Remix.

And if you want a bonus reason, this month, they’ve summarized MY book, Rewired, for leaders who want to know how to use social media to share their message. (In other words, you can read the summary and not buy my book… but I’m not officially recommending that…)

So, seriously, subscribe now. It’s $48 per year, which is the cost of about 3 books on leadership, and you’ll get summaries of 3 books every two weeks, exposing you to 78 books for leaders over the course of a year.

Subscribe to SUMS reMix

And by the way, I was NOT asked to write this, nor am I being compensated for it. I’ve been a SUMS reMix subscriber myself since it launched and I love it.

3 Luxuries That Should Be Essentials

Reading and ListeningThere are three luxuries I never feel I have enough time for – reading, writing, and creating. Why? Because they tend to follow the “have to’s” such as financial management, relationship management, task lists, and deadlines.

Have you ever said something like, “I don’t have time to read another book, write another blog post, or craft a new sermon… I have too much to get done.”? Somehow, we need to flip that on its head. How? I don’t have all the answers, but I think I have a few:

1. Read, write, and create early in the week, and early in the day, saving the to do list for later. W. A. Criswell always had excellent advice for young pastors, whom he would advise to “give your mornings to God and your afternoons to the ministry of the church.” He studied at home, in seclusion, each day from 6 to noon, then headed to the office, and still managed to lead a church of tens of thousands of Dallas residents with its many ministries and sub-organizations.

2. Think long term instead of short term. There is great short-term gain in getting a to do list accomplished and knocking out tasks. It’s called “productivity” for a reason – it produces results. But if, after months of intense productivity, we dry up spiritually and feed no one, what good have we really done?

3. Redefine “success” and “effectiveness.” We tend to define both in terms of output – the numerical measurement of the results of our work. But perhaps being effective and achieving success have as much to do with input as output – not merely the result of our work, but what we’ve invested into the improving of our work to begin with.

4. Start. Now. As I write this, I have a lengthy to do list filled with important tasks and assignments, but I’ve read a chapter of a new book helping me to understand tripolar spirituality more clearly, I’ve written most of this blog post, and I have yet to get my son off to school. Sometimes you just have to dig in and force the “luxuries” to become essentials – for the good of your soul, the organization you lead, and everyone else around you.

In other words, sometimes making the luxuries the essentials is a means of accomplishing the greater good. Imagine if we applied the same principle to devotional time, family time, and introspection time. Our whole world just might change for the better.

Photo by Joel Bedford.

Fresh Stories I’ve Bookmarked This Week

My Daughter's Pretty Feet

My Daughter’s Pretty Feet

You can’t lead and pour into others if you aren’t taking in a steady diet of life-building content yourself. Here are some stories I’ve bookmarked lately, some on marriage, others on leadership, and a few on communications and design. Read what you like.

If you’ve read or written something lately that we need to see, post a link below.

Speed Reading: Read a Book Per Day, a Blog Per Minute

I’m an avid reader, online and off. I love great blogs and I love good books even more. I may never own a Kindle because I still like to open a book with a spine. There’s a problem with reading though – it takes time, and there are way to many books and articles to read to be wasting so much time reading. What’s the solution? Speed reading.

[Read more…]

Recovering From My Wisdom Tooth Extraction

Just a quick update. My wisdom teeth extraction took less than an hour. When we left the oral surgeon’s office we headed to Walmart where I was instructed to wait in the car while my wife got my prescriptions filled. I got bored and tried to get out of the car, which set the alarm off. So I wandered into the store in search of Angie. I couldn’t find her, so I made a bank deposit and stumbled back to the pharmacy again. When she found out where I was, I was in trouble!

Nonetheless, I’m doing great so far – very little pain, very little bleeding, and I’m thankful for the prayers my friends and family have offered. You guys are all great! Here are a couple of life applications…

  • Not all the horror stories you hear are true – it’s not always as bad as your dramatic friends make it out to be. (Sometimes it is though, so watch out).
  • Downtime is nice sometimes. I’m reading, blogging, designing, studying, praying, and thinking, all from the comfort of my bed and I don’t have to feel bad about it one bit.

That’s it, I suppose. Thanks for the prayers!