What do you do when you don't have enough emotional energy to put towards your leadership? What do you do when you find yourself giving less than your best in the conversations, presentations, and facilitation of meetings because you feel emotionally worn out? What do you do when, in the majority of interactions you have with your team, you are physically present but emotionally absent?

I am currently having to ask myself the above questions in light of a week filled with emotionally draining circumstances, experiences, and challenges. But, I know I must take the proper steps to regain my emotional energy because if I don't/can't I will not be able to lead effectively. So here's what I'm going to do, and I recommend you do the same:


Discipline yourself to get 8 hours of rest. Cancel a meeting. Re-schedule a commitment. Turn a project in late. Do whatever you have to do to sleep. Your lack of sleep is hurting more than it is helping. You have justified it by labeling yourself a "hard worker", but at the end of the day, because you have not had adequate rest, you may have worked hard, but you have not been able to bring your "best self" to your work. Your team needs a healthy you more than they need a "hard-working" you. SLEEP.


Discipline yourself to turn. it. off. For an eight hour period (while you're awake!), fully disconnect yourself from your work. Don't check your email. Don't work on the project. Don't have any conversations with team members. Don't lead. When you are emotionally drained, your disengagement may be a greater gift to your organization and team than your engagement. DISCONNECT. 


Discipline yourself to have some fun. (And I don't want to hear, "Well my work is fun!") It may be, but you also need to learn to have fun in ways outside of work. Exercise. Play a sport. Read. Write. Engage with your kids. Enjoy the outdoors. Eat a great meal. If you don't know how to play, you will not make it as a leader. If you don't know how to find joy in something other than the success of your work, you have put too much pressure on the success of your work. PLAY.


Discipline yourself to create space/time for you to share (with the appropriate person) the struggles you are facing as a leader. Many times you will find yourself empty of emotional energy because you are full of work-related stress. By venting, you empty yourself of the feelings of frustration, discouragement, anger, and allow room for emotional energy to be re-gained. VENT.


Discipline yourself to, in silence and solitude, connect with your Heavenly Father. Dwell on God's goodness. Think upon His blessings. Meditate on His grace. Cast your cares upon Him for He cares for you. Cry out for strength. Cry out for insight. Cry out for wisdom. Admit your weaknesses. Admit your failures. Admit your inadequacies. Before God, posture yourself not as the leader, but as the one who needs to be led. PRAY.

I use the phrase "discipline yourself to" with each of these because they are indeed disciplines. No one can do these things for you. No one is as aware of your emotional energy level than you are and no one can take these action steps for you. Do what you need to do, TODAY, to regain your emotional energy, the effectiveness of your leadership depends on it. 

Why do you think it is so difficult for leaders to take the proper steps to guard and maintain their emotional energy? Please leave your comments below, I'd really like to know!


As a leader you are expected to bring so many things to the table. Vision. Direction. Inspiration. Knowledge. Passion. Expertise. The list goes on and on. But what is the most important thing? If you could focus on one thing to acquire, maintain, and give to your team, what would it be?

Bill Hybels, Senior Pastor of Willow Creek Community Church in Chicago, Illinois has these thoughts,

 A leaders most valuable asset is not their time but their energy and ability to energize others.

In leadership circles, much is said about time management, but very rarely do we hear about the concept of energy management, and in my leadership experiences, I have learned that what Bill Hybels has to say is absolutely true.

You may be able to manage your time to a tee, but if you don't have any energy to bring to that time, what good are you in the meeting, conversation, planning session, etc? 

But it's not only a physical energy that I think we need to bring to our teams. I'd encourage you to be aware of two types of energy. Physical and emotional. Though the physical energy you bring to your team is extremely important (physical strength, physical alertness, physical wherewithal), I would argue that your emotional energy is equally important.

To be an effective leader, emotional energy is a must. Are you bringing a healthy amount of emotional energy to the interactions you are having with your staff, volunteers, and customers? Is your mind present? Are you listening to understand, not to respond? Are you bringing a healthy amount of emotional energy to your public presentations? is your heart engaged with the content? Is your soul moved by what you are saying? Is what you are saying just as true for you as you want it to be for those listening? Are you bringing a healthy amount of emotional energy to the work you do in private? Do you invest your emotional energy in thinking about the future of your organization? Do you invest your emotional energy in planning next steps? The bottom line is this...

The times when my leadership is most ineffective is when I am physically present but emotionally absent.

In tomorrow post, I will share some ways that I acquire, maintain, and give emotional energy to the team I'm privileged to lead. But in the meantime, I'd love to hear your thoughts on this...

Do you agree with the importance of brining emotional energy to your team? Why or why not? Please leave your comments below, I'd really like to know! 


As a leader, you are always on the lookout for high capacity leaders to add to your team, staff, or organization. But how do you know what a high capacity leader looks like? How can you differentiate between a bad leader and a good one? 

The quickest way to improve your ability to recognize bad leaders is to allow yourself to be influenced by great leaders.

Podcasts. Books. Seminars. Webinars. Blog Posts.  

There is no excuse.  Access to great leaders and great leadership content has never been as readily and easily available as it is today.

As you immerse yourself in the thinking, philosophies, habits, motivations, approaches, strategies, and personalities of world-class leaders, poor leadership will become more obvious to you.

When you allow yourself to be invested in and influenced by great leaders, poor leadership qualities like laziness, passivity, lack of vision, delegation deficiency, pride, and false humility become incredibly obvious to you!  

In the same way that you know what bad chicken and waffles tastes like after having experienced great chicken and waffles (Brown Sugar Kitchen in Oakland, CA), your ability to recognize bad leaders will be most improved by your time influenced by great leaders.

Who are some of the great leaders you are influenced by and how are you influenced by them? Please leave your comments below, I'd really like to know!


Are you currently experiencing conflict with a family member, team member, or friend? Have you ever experienced conflict with someone who you love and/or lead?

If so, you know that it can be painful, wearisome, and difficult. If so, you understand that relational conflict is one of the most emotionally taxing parts of leadership that you wish never existed. If so, you also probably understand that conflict is an unfortunate reality of leadership that does exist and that it must be handled well. As a leader, you cannot avoid conflict resolution.

So if conflict is a reality, how can a leader get better at conflict resolution?

Well, at a lunch today with a mentor and friend, I was introduced to the three types of "peacemakers." I believe my mentor's insights were gained from The Peacemaker by Ken Sande. Though so much more goes into peacemaking, determining on the front-end what type of peacemaker you want to be will go a long way. 


Are you a peace-breaker? When conflict arises do you run? Do you avoid? Do you slander the person you are in conflict with? Do you backbite? Do you place blame? Do you remove yourself from the situation thereby closing the door to reconciliation? Do you prefer being "right" to being reconciled? If a majority of these answers are "yes" you may be a peace-breaker.


Are you a peace-faker? When conflict arises do you pretend like conflict hasn't arisen? Do you disguise your anger with a smile? Do you hide your hurt with "happiness?" Do you say one thing in front of the person you have conflict with and an entirely different thing to everyone else? Do you pursue the appearance of a healthy relationship more than an actual healthy relationship? Do you prefer being fake to experiencing and extending true forgiveness? If a majority of these answers are "yes" you may be a peace-faker. 


Are you a peace-maker? When conflict arises do you confront it? Do you approach the person with whom you have conflict and seek to understand before being understood? Do you apologize? Do you ask for forgiveness? Do you own the part of the conflict that you are responsible for? Do you sincerely say, "I'm sorry?" Do you exercise humility? Do you pursue reconciliation until you no longer can pursue reconciliation? Do you prefer being reconciled to being "right?" If a majority of these answers are "yes" you may be a peace-maker.

Regardless of what type of peacemaker you find yourself to be today, in order to become an effective leader, "Peace-Maker" must become your goal. If as leaders, we cannot cultivate a culture of peace, disunity will ensue and failure will be our result.   

Why is becoming a Peace-Maker so difficult? Please share your comments below, I'd really like to know!


Today marks the first week of the 4th quarter of 2015. Why is this important to you? Well in sports, the 4th quarter matters most. Though a team may start off strong and though they may be winning at halftime, if the team does not close out a game well, they are susceptible to defeat. On the flip side, though a team may start off slow and be losing at halftime, if the team finishes the 4th quarter well, they can come back and win!

And whose responsibility is it for a team to finish strong? The leader. Whether it's the coach, the star player, or the team captain, the leader of the team is most responsible for the team finishing strong.

The leader positively influences his team to finish strong through his play, through his enthusiasm, through his optimism, and through his encouragement of other players on the team. 

Now putting the sports analogy aside, how will you lead your team to victory in the 4th quarter of 2015? Will it be through your personal contribution? Will it be through your enthusiasm and optimism? Will it be through your encouragement and guidance of your team members? Or will it be as a result of all of these things combined?

Leader, your team needs you. They need your best effort. They need your focused energy. They need your leadership.

Buckle down. Make a play. And finish strong. 

The 4th quarter is when champions are made!  


Do what you committed to doing even if you don't feel like doing it. Do what you committed to doing because the feeling of having done it is way more satisfying than the feeling of neglect. Do what you committed to doing because if you aren't building the habit of consistency, you're building the habit of inconsistency. 

It is your efforts compounded over time that will yield the results you are looking for. Every time you stop doing what you said you would do, the compounding process has to start all over again. Every decision to neglect your disciplines compounds failure not success.

Something is better than nothing. Writing some words is better than writing no words. Exercising for nine minutes is better than exercising for no minutes. Eating one good meal a day is better than eating no good meals a day. Drinking some water is better than drinking no water. Spending some quality time is better than spending no quality time. 

Consistency is your key. To unlock opportunities. To unlock potential. To unlock talent. To unlock closed doors. To unlock prisons of mediocrity. To unlock your treasures within. 

If you neglect me, you forfeit your right to be great. 

If consistency could speak, what would it say to you? Leave your comment below, I'd really like to know!


Last week I reflected upon some reasons why I hate being a point-leader. Though I believe it was very therapeutic for me to think through some of my frustrations with point-leadership, I think it will serve me and others well to share the things I love most about leading in the capacity that I do. After all, though the lows of leadership may be low, as you will see in this list, the highs are high!


As a point-leader no one experiences the joy, excitement, and satisfaction of progress being made towards the organization's mission and vision than I do. Very few emotions can compare to the feeling of dreaming up a preferred future and seeing it come to pass as a result of time, effort, and energy that you and your team put forth. The realization that the positive results that the organization is experiencing may not have come to pass without your bold and courageous point-leadership is very personally satisfying!

Though the joy of the success of an organization can be shared by all, the degree of joy is directly related to one's emotional attachment to and responsibility for the organization's success. And no one is more emotionally attached and feels more responsible than the point-leader!


Without a team, there is nothing for a point-leader to lead. The point-leader's team is what makes a point-leader a point-leader! With that in mind, it is one of my life's greatest joys to identify, recruit, develop, and deploy a team of people to pursue the accomplishment of a mission.

As a point-leader, I have the privilege of casting a compelling vision to potential team members in an effort to have them fill key roles on the team. As a point-leader, I have the privilege of placing new team members in the roles that suit them most and serve the organization best. As a point-leader I have the privilege of not only developing the skills and competencies of the individual team members, but also the culture and values of the team as a whole. Finally, as a point-leader I have the privilege of sending the team out with encouragement, hope and excitement!

Each of these aspects of team-building are super enjoyable! The meetings, the conversations, the brain-storming sessions, the meals eaten, the experiences shared, the victories celebrated - there is such joy in a journey taken together. I really couldn't tell you what part of point-leadership I love more: the success the team creates or the creation of a successful team!       


As a point-leader, no one has more ability to catalyze change than I do. If the organization is drifting from its' mission, wavering in its' commitments, or faltering in the achievement of its' goals, point-leaders can, like no one else in the organization, initiate change. If the organization or business is structured properly the point-leader should have the least amount of "red tape" in their way stopping them from doing what needs to be done to get the results the organization is intending to get.

Point-leadership is exhilarating because if there is something that needs to be changed, we can change it. If there is an opportunity to be pursued, we can pursue it. If there is an obstacle to overcome, we can overcome it. Point-leaders can't place blame, make excuses, or avoid responsibility, and when there is no one else to blame but yourself, you are actually empowered to do something about it! And though that may be a heavy burden to bear for some, to the point-leader, the opportunity to pursue change with as few hindrances as possible is one of the things we love most about the opportunity we've been given!

What does this mean for you?

  1. Appreciate your position. If you are a point-leader, these are the privileges that you have been given. Appreciate them. Enjoy them. Cherish them. There are no guarantees of how long we will have the privilege of leading in our organizations, homes, businesses, and groups in the ways that we do. Approach each day with an awe and wonder of the fact that you get to lead! 
  2. If you are not a point-leader but would like to become one, serve faithfully where you are currently at. If you want to experience the joys listed above, be faithful in the positions and opportunities you have already been given. Nothing can accelerate you quicker into a position of point-leadership than excelling where you are at. Nothing can slow you down faster from becoming a point-leader than taking for granted where you at. 

What do you love most about point-leadership? Leave your comment below, I'd really like to know!



  1. Celebrated 11 years of marriage by enjoying a weekend away with Rebekah in San Luis Obispo.
  2. Celebrated theMOVEMENT's 2-Year Anniversary, highlighted by a touching cardboard testimonials presentation.  
  3. Played a role in seeing Wayne and Rochelle commit their lives to Christ.
  4. Finished reading Isaiah, Jeremiah, Lamentations, Ezekiel, and Daniel . Journaled 11 times. 
  5. Joined a monthly Pastor's mentoring group in San Jose.


  1. Schedule and attend my first personal counseling session.
  2. Run 100 miles. 
  3. Get at least B-'s on my three midterms.
  4. Read H3 LEADERSHIP by Brad Lomenick.


  1. Write 50 Thank-You/Praying for You cards.
  2. Run 6 miles at least 15 times.
  3. Post a 200 word blog post, 31 times.


  1. No TV.
  2. No soda.


  1. Write 50 Thank-You/Praying for You cards.

What is your "1 Commitment" for October 2015? Leave your comment below, I'd really like to know!


In my lifetime, I have been given the opportunity of being the "point-leader" (the buck stops with me) of a group, business, or organization on several occasions. To give you an idea of the range of point leadership experiences I've had, along with my age at the time, here is a short list:

  1. 8th Grade Class President (12)
  2. Christian Club President (15)
  3. Sunday School Director (20) 
  4. PPLSI Area Coordinator (22) 
  5. Non-Profit Organization Executive Director (25) 
  6. High School Ministry Director (27) 
  7. Lead Pastor (30) 

Throughout the years, though there have been many things that I love about point leadership, I have come to absolutely hate (I know hate is a strong word, but it best describes how I feel!) three things in particular:


As the point leader, no one feels and experiences the weight of responsibility for the success and effectiveness of the organization like we do. No one is as burdened with seeing the mission and vision of the organization come to fruition as we are. No one feels more accountable for the results of the organization, whether bad or good, than we do.

I hate that the responsibility is heavy because the weight of it is something that never changes! There is absolutely nothing I can do to feel less responsible, I'm the leader! All I can do is learn to carry the weight of responsibility more effectively. 


As a point leader, no one is more of a target for criticism, blame, and flat out hate than we are. No one experiences the onslaught of "feedback" of things we can be doing better, things we could be doing more of, and things we should be doing less! No one is confronted by the never ending opinions (which are often times right!) of the things that need to be changed for the organization to reach its' full potential than us.

I hate that the critique is relentless because, many times, it just hurts! The manner in which many people go about the matter of providing feedback is, often times, insensitive, untimely, and rude.

I also hate that the critique is relentless because, whether people know it or not, point leaders are just as relentless about improving as their critics are at communicating what needs to be improved! So every time a new critique comes, the point leader has another thing to add to his already long list of things he's working to make better!  


As a point leader, no one is more negatively affected by missed goals and missed opportunities than we are. No one is more saddened by ways in which the organization failed or let people down than we are. Whether it is with staff, members, customers, or potential clients, no is more crushed by an organizations inability to meet expectations than the point leader. When something the organization intends to do doesn't get done, it is the point leader who is most discouraged by missing the mark.

I hate that failure is devastating because organizational failure is an inescapable reality! Every time an organization tries something new, the potential for failure is present. On my best day, the devastation of failure cannot be avoided, it can only be managed.

What does this mean for you? 

With an awareness of the three things I hate about being a point-leader in mind, here are three recommendations: 

  1. Pray for your leader.  We could definitely use it! I don't think there is a point-leader alive who would not readily receive your prayers for them!
  2.  Extend grace to your leader. We are going to let you down. We are going to disappoint you. Being a point-leader gives us no excuse to fail you, but when we do, grace is much appreciated!
  3. Evaluate your desire to be a point leader. Are you prepared for heavy responsibility? Are you ready for relentless critique? Can you handle devastating failure? Though Jesus may have been talking about following Him, I think these words are wise as we evaluate our desire to lead others, "But don't begin until you count the cost. For who would begin construction of a building without first calculating the cost to see if there is enough money to finish it?" (Luke 14:28 NLT)


Ever since I can remember, there has been one word that has driven me. Many desires have shifted and waned throughout the years, but my goal to achieve this has not. When nothing else could motivate me, this word did.


Financial success. Relational success. Educational success. Occupational success. Social success. Spiritual success. Marital success. Physical success. I want to be successful in every area of my life. 

Now though there might not be anything inherently wrong with desiring success in each of these areas of my life, what I have found to be a problem is defining what success actually is for each of these areas of my life!

The definition of success, for all of these areas, seems to be an ever-changing, ever-increasing, unattainable, elusive target.

There's always more money I can earn, save, and invest. There's always more and deeper friendships I can develop. There's always more degrees I can earn. There's always more accolades I can earn on the job. There's always more influence I can gain. There's always more of an understanding that I can have of my faith. There's always more of a sacrifice that I could be making in my marriage. There's always more weight that I can lose and more muscle that I can gain!

And when I look at it this way, it's easy to get discouraged because it seems like "success" then becomes impossible to achieve.

I so badly want to cross the "finish line" in each of these areas of my life, but I have no idea where the finish line is! I so desperately I want to "ascend to the peak" of each of these areas of my life, but from where I'm standing there is no peak in sight! I so anxiously want to "complete the assignment" that I have been given for each of these areas of my life, but I don't ever remember receiving any actual instructions!

So what have I done to deal with my strong desire for something I have, for so long, struggled to define?


I quit pursuing success. I quit desiring success. I quit envisioning success. 

Instead, I have chosen another word to drive me. I've chosen another word to motivate me to my full potential. I've chosen another word by which I will measure the quality of my life.


Day by day. Hour by hour. Moment by moment obedience to God's will for my life. This  is my desire. 

As it relates to every area of my life, the key question is, "Am I being obedient?" 

Am I doing what God is requiring me to do?  Am I saying what God is leading me to say? Am I going where God is commanding me to go?

Am I being obedient to God's will? Am I being submitted to God's Word? Am I being cooperative with God's way? 

These are the questions that matter to me now.  

I'm resolved.

I'm going to concern myself with my obedience, and let God concern Himself with my "success."


Today my wife and I celebrated our 11-Year Wedding Anniversary. I am so blessed and grateful for the love that we've been able to share thus far, but in an effort to make the next 11 years of our marriage even more harmonious and enjoyable than the first 11, I figured it would be wise to reflect upon the primary lessons I've learned about marriage during the time we have spent together so far as husband and wife. 

1. Selfishness Separates

The times when I have felt most disconnected from my wife is when I have been thinking and acting selfishly. It's very hard to be connected to someone you're not thinking about. In other words, whenever selfishness is present, intimacy is absent. 

2. Finances Frustrate

Marriage and money "issues" go hand in hand. It's not a matter of "if" money will become an issue, it's a matter of how big of an issue will we allow it to become? Matthew 6:25-34 has become particularly helpful with this. Here are the Cliff's Notes: "Do not worry."

3. Patience Prevails

So many arguments, disagreements, and frustrations can be avoided by exercising patience in the midst of tension and uncertainty. Patient, thought through responses trump impulsive, knee jerk reactions. Always. 

4. Purpose Points

In the times when I am confused about the trajectory that our marriage is on, it is the purpose of marriage that always points me back in the right direction.  The purpose of our love for each other is to become a visible representation of God's love for the world.

5. Experiences Enhance

Very few things have strengthened our marriage like our intentional effort to create new memories through fresh and unique shared experiences. The quickest way for your marriage to feel old is to eliminate trying things that are new!

6. Occupations Occupy

Our responsibility to work our jobs can very easily begin to take precedence over our responsibility to love each other. If we are not intentional about disconnecting ourselves from our work, our work will disconnect us from our marriage.

7. Surprises Satisfy

Surprise gifts. Surprise dates. Surprise plans. Surprise cards. A well thought out surprise can showcase the intentionality, ingenuity, and interest you have for your marriage in a way that the same ol' executed routine, many times, just can't do.

8. Actions Accentuate

Being that I'm a guy who talks for a living, my wife is not impressed by the words I use to express my love. She doesn't want to hear me love her, she wants to see me love her. She doesn't care about what I say , she cares about what I show !

9. Laughter Lifts

If I want to gauge how healthy my marriage is, all I have to do is pay attention to how often we are laughing together. No laughter. No love. If laughter is not lifting your marriage up, it is very likely that taking yourself too seriously is bringing your marriage down. 

10. Community Contributes

Our marriage was not meant to be lived out in isolation. Having a community of people around us who can share in the ups and downs of our marital journey is a necessity. I strongly believe that our ability to "go the distance" in our marriage has much to do with being surrounded by a community of people committed to seeing us "go the distance" in our marriage!

11. Humility Honors 

One of the greatest ways I can show honor to my wife is to admit when I've messed up, made a mistake, and missed the mark as a husband. Nothing else reveals a lack of honor for my wife than a habitual display of my pride. 

This is by no means an exhaustive list of all the things I've learned, but I am confident that as I take the lessons above to heart, our marriage will continue to grow stronger as the years go by! 

Please let me know in the comments below what marital lessons you have learned. I sure could use the help! 


Over the last five years that I've been involved in pastoral ministry, though there have been many times where I have experienced absolute joy, though there have have been many instances where I have been in utter amazement, and though there have been many occasions where I could do nothing else but stand in awe of God for the opportunity that he's given me...there have also been seasons of tremendous amounts of pain.

The pain of unreached goals. The pain of umet expectations. The pain of unresolved conflict. The pain of dissatisfied guests. The pain of disinterested attendees. The pain of disengaged members. The pain of poor systems. The pain of ineffective processes. The pain of inconsistent execution.

All of these pains have hurt.  

They have caused me heartache, they have led to sleepless nights, and on several occasions, they have even led me to seriously consider quitting.  

But none of the pains have hurt, hindered, or haunted me like the pain of...

Watching people choose to do things their way instead of God's way.

Financially. Relationally. Vocationally. Educationally. Physically. 

To see people either consciously or unconsciously allow the desires of their flesh to displace the will of the Spirit absolutely crushes me.

Now, by no means do I believe that I get it right all the time, but to watch someone you love, care for, and are invested in get it wrong is devastating.  

Not only does their wrong choice pain me, but what pains me even more is to watch them struggle through the negative consequences of their choice. 

The truth is, going into the ministry, I grossly underestimated the emotional impact that pastoring people would have on me. I wrongly assumed that I would be able to disconnect myself from situations in time for me not to be so adversely affected.

So how am I learning to cope? So why have I not decided to quit? So how have I come to the resolution to continue? 


I am so thankful that in the midst of my pain, the Holy Spirit has empowered me to look to the cross of Jesus Christ to see the Son of God suffering a pain that I will never understand so that I can be reassured that He knows the pain I'm going through and, more importantly, so I can be confident He is with me in that pain.  Shepherding me as I shepherd.

I must remember, I am just an undershepherd. Christ is the Chief Shepherd, and it is His voice, not mine, that will ultimately bring the strays home!   

"My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand." John 10:27-28


"The grass withers, the flower fades, but the Word of God will stand forever." Isaiah 40:8

Dear Heavenly Father,

With so many things around me that are temporary, with so many things that attract me that will not last, with so many things vying for my attention that absolutely will not satisfy, I desire to hunger and thirst for your Word more than anything else in this world. 

Grow in me an enduring yearning to seek, consume, and understand your Word, your precepts, and your truth. Grow in me an insatiable desire to hide your Word in my heart. Grow in me constant hunger for the Bread of Life.

Your Word will outlast kingdoms. Your Word will outlast political offices. Your Word will outlast regimes.

Your Word will remain when fads and fashions fade away. Your Word will stand when false ideals and ideologies fall. Your Word will continue when the lives of those who speak lies are finished. 

Your Word is everlasting. Your Word is enduring. Your Word will stand forever.

Give me the wisdom, O Lord, to seek the eternal over the temporal. Give me the courage to pursue the permanent over the temporary. Give me the understanding to know that what you have already spoken is far more valuable and will far outlast anything man will ever speak.

I pray all of this in Jesus name, Amen. 


Sometimes it can feel like an unexplainable force. Sometimes it can feel like an unmerited gift. Sometimes it can feel like an undeniable advantage. 

Sometimes it can come as a result of hard work. Sometimes it can come as a result of good luck. Sometimes it can come as a result of changing circumstances. 

But when it does come, it is powerful. It is unrelenting. It is contagious. It can change the game. It can turn the tide. It can flip the script. 

It renews confidence. It recharges energy. It reinvigorates passion.  


I currently sense it in most areas of my life. Spiritually. Emotionally. Mentally. Vocationally. Financially. Relationally. Physically.

I feel a wind of momentum propelling me forward, and I am so grateful. 

New people. Fresh attitudes. Unexpected opportunities. Crystallized vision. Sacrificial commitments. Financial provision.

All of these things are huge factors in the momentum I am currently experiencing, and all I can feel is awe and wonder for this gift of grace that God is bestowing upon me.

I must take advantage. I must ride the wave. I must steward this season well. I must mobilize. I must envision. I must act. Because, if there's one thing I know about momentum, it is this,

it doesn't last forever. 



  1. Invested in my leadership by attending the Willow Creek Global Leadership Summit in San Jose and the Catalyst One Day in San Diego.
  2. Re-formatted edwardpaz.com and re-committed myself to consistently writing again. 
  3. Ran the half-marathon in Oakland for the 2nd consecutive year. (This year, with my dad and brothers.)
  4. Played a role in seeing Sarah and Erica commit their lives to Christ.
  5. Biked from the Golden Gate Bridge to the Bay Bridge with the Romero's for Rebekah's birthday. 


  1. Enjoy a nice weekend away for our 11th anniversary. 
  2. Register for either the Spartan Sprint or the SF Half Marathon.
  3. Read 17 Indisputable Laws of Teamwork by John C. Maxwell.
  4. Finalize and follow Fall work plan.


  1. Read Word/Journal 25x.
  2. Write 250 Word Blog Post 25x.
  3. 30 minutes of cardio 20x. 


  1. No fast food/soda.
  2. No shopping. 


  1. By October 1, 2015, I read the Word and Journal my prayers 25 times. 


As I do my best to get back into the habit of writing daily, today, I am reminded of a concept that I believe will serve me well in the coming months. I am reminded of a mantra that will encourage me to write especially when I don't feel like it. I am reminded of three words that will propel me towards consistency not only in my writing, but in other areas of my life as well.


As it relates to my writing, I need to just show up to the laptop and start forming sentences. I need to just show up to the iPhone (which I am currently on) and start typing away. I need to just show up to my desktop and start putting together paragraphs. 

Though I may be tired. Though I may feel like I have nothing to say. Though I may have other things I'd rather do. For me to become the writer I believe I have the potential to become, I need to just. show. up. 

But this doesn't only apply to me and my writing. It probably also applies to you and some area of your life that you desire to improve upon.  

 What is it for you?

Do you need to just show up to the gym? Do you need to just show up to the practice? Do you need to just show up to the appointment? Do you need to just show up to the class? Do you need to just show up to the rehearsal? Do you need to just show up to the meeting? Do you need to just show up to the group? Do you need to just show up to the game? Do you need to just show up to the church? Do you need to just show up to the interview? Do you need to just show up to the audition? Do you need to just show up to the job?

I encourage you to identify where you need to stop making excuses and start following through on your commitments and... Just. Show. Up.

Because as far as I know, greatness has never been achieved by someone who was consistently absent.


I'm so disappointed in myself. How could I let this become my reality? Shouldn't I know better? Wasn't I raised to know better? With all the material I consumed on the topic and with all the material I created and taught on the topic, How could I let this happen to me?

How did I ever allow myself to stop dreaming?

At what point did I stop envisioning my preferred future? At what point did I stop writing down long-term goals? At what point did I stop believing that God could do the impossible in and through my life? 

Maybe because it was because I got older. Maybe because it was I saw certain dreams go unfulfilled. Maybe it was because I just lost faith.

Though I like to tell myself I was just "surrendering my future into God's hands." Though I would like to believe I was just "being faithful when the amounts are small." Though I would like to argue I was "seeking God's will and not my own." I don't think that was really the case. 

Here's why. 

When I stopped dreaming, I became cynical. I became pessimistic. I became fearful. I became jaded. I became unresolved. I became a "realist." If I was truly seeking "God's will," I don't believe I would've taken on these negative character traits. 

 Well, today, all of this ends.

Today I start dreaming again! Today I start imagining again!  Today I reignite my childlike faith!

Because though I may have grown older, this childhood lesson I have not yet forgotten, 

Without faith it is impossible to please God.    



"Develop a right hand TEAM not a right hand PERSON." Craig Groeschel

During the first two years of theMOVEMENT's existence, unfortunately, I have already had several people transition off of our Staff Team.  I am very aware that I have made many leadership mistakes that have led to these transitions, and I want to get better.

Therefore, as I enter into a season of developing a new staff team, in an effort to become a more effective leader, one of the things I'm doing is investing time envisioning the type of Staff Team I'd like us to become. Instead of developing a staff culture by chance, I'd like to do my best to develop a staff culture by design. Here's what I have so far. The Staff Team I See...


We laugh. We laugh at ourselves. We laugh at each other. We laugh at our mistakes. We laugh at our circumstances. Though we will take God and the mission of the Church very seriously, we will not take ourselves too seriously. And if we find ourselves short on things to laugh about, we will always take time to laugh at the absurdity that God actually choose us to lead His Church!  


We lead. We are not "Yes Men" and "Yes Women." We take initiative in our roles and do not wait to be told what to do. We lead ourselves. We lead our teams. We lead the church. We are extremely aware of the fact that the health and strength of the church rises and falls on the health and strength of our leadership. 


We listen. We listen to God. We listen to each other. We listen to our members. We listen to our guests. We listen to the community. We understand that we can learn more about each other and the people who we've been called to serve by listening. We understand that we can meet needs best by listening. We understand that we can avoid and resolve conflict and frustration by listening. We understand that if we don't listen, someone else will, and opportunities will be lost.    


We learn. We learn from the Scriptures. We learn from other churches. We learn from each other. We learn from people both inside and outside of the church. We learn from both our fans and our critics. Conferences. Books. Podcasts. Vodcasts. Blogs. Vlogs. Mentors. We have an ever-increasing appetite for learning because we understand that not all learners are leaders, but all leaders are learners. 


We last. We last through ups and downs. We last through good times and through bad. We last through triumphs and transitions. We understand that every great team and every great organization has at its' foundation a group of people who have committed to last. We understand that for our mission of Overwhelming Oakland with Love to become a reality, longevity must become a necessity.   


You ever wonder why people take the time, effort, and energy to criticize, make fun of, and put down other people? Out of all the things that they could be doing with their brain power, they use it to bring someone else or a group of people down...WHY? Don't they have better things to do? Don't they have more productive ways to invest their time?  

Haters of organizations. Haters of companies. Haters of people groups. Haters of products. Haters of religions. Haters of initiatives. Haters exist for everything and everybody!

And this doesn't only have to be people who are outspoken about their hate. I know plenty of people who are "undercover" haters and critics. They might not be well known for their hate, but if they were to be honest with themselves, they would say that the conversations with themselves and with others that come easiest to them are more destructive than constructive. 

Why is this? Why do so many people live their lives in this way?

Well, being that I am someone who has hated on others and am also someone who has been hated on, I have come to the conclusion that...

Haters hate on others as a way to avoid dealing with the things that they hate most about themselves. 

It's hard to deal with your character flaws. It's hard to focus on your shortcomings. It's hard to break your bad habits. It's hard to overcome your fears.  

So, instead of changing themselves, haters spend their time mouthing off about what should be changed in others. 

Some people eat to avoid. Others spend money to avoid. Another group of people drink to avoid. There are a million different things people do to avoid dealing with their issues. 

Haters hate.  

And this hate hurts, humiliates, and harms people each and every day.

But even worse than that, it results in the hater being distracted from the very thing that they should be focused on changing...themselves.


"There's usually about a half-dozen things that makes 80% of the difference. Keep looking for the few things that makes the most difference...then spend most of your time working on those few things. Don't spend major time on minor things." Jim Rohn

As I endeavor to make this next year of my life the best year of my life, I am determined to invest my time in, what Jim calls, "the few things that make the most difference." I want to focus my efforts and my energies on the half-dozen, simple disciplines that, compounded over time, will produce the results in my life that I desire.

With that in mind, after much thought and consideration, I have identified the following "daily disciplines" that I will commit to and re-commit myself to for 30 days at a time. 

  1. I desire an intimate relationship with Jesus Christ, I commit to reading the Word and journaling to Jesus daily.
  2. I desire a "connected" relationship with my wife, I commit to praying with my wife out loud daily.
  3. I desire a healthy body, I commit to exercising for 30 minutes and eating less than 2,000 calories daily.
  4. I desire to be a proficient writer, I commit to writing a 250-word blog post daily.
  5. I desire to be a caring pastor, I commit to making 3 pastoral calls daily. 
  6. I desire to be disciplined, I commit to being in bed by 10pm and to being out of bed by 6am daily.

Though these half-dozen things are easy to do, they are also very easy not to do. Therefore it will be the very pointed words of personal development expert Brian Tracy that will keep me focused on executing these disciplines each day. 

Successful people are simply those with successful habits.

Though I wish leading a successful life were more complicated than that, it really isn't!

So with all that in mind, the key question for you is, What are your half-dozen things?