Quit Being Lazy

Men….I am talking to you. I know that 2020 was an unprecedented year, unlike anything we have been through. But that is no excuse. I know because I have fallen in that trap as well. The truth is that our wives need us. They need us now probably more than ever.

Over the next several days, maybe weeks, I want to share about marriage. Last year, I committed to Jessica that we would attend a marriage retreat at least once every quarter. Not because we needed it but because we wanted it. There is something about attending an intimate weekend marriage retreat with your spouse that can not be replicated.

Unfortunately, we were not able to attend any last year due to the pandemic. I am not sure about Jess but I know that I could feel it. I could actually feel the effects of not attending a conference last year. But we are finally able to attend a conference this month. We are excited to attend Romance Uncovered this year and hope to make it one of our yearly conferences to attend.

Leading up to our conference in a couple weeks, I want to share 10 tips to effectively date your spouse. These are tips that I have learned and believe they can greatly improve your married, dating life. I hate to admit it but I struggle with effectively dating my spouse as well. I will share 1 tip a day for the next 10 days.

  1. Do not be lazy. Think. Prepare. Act. Dating your spouse takes planning. It takes thoughtful preparation. Think back to before you were married, How much time and effort did you put into planning each and every date you went on? I would venture to bet that you have not put that much planning into a date night with your spouse since you have been married.

The craving of a sluggard will be the death of him,
    because his hands refuse to work. – Proverbs 21:25

When it comes to working on our marriage relationships so they grow stronger, too many of us treat it with a “whatever…” attitude. But realize:

“Love is a choice. So choose to love your spouse well. Remember that they are not the same person they were when you met them. Nor are you. So while you may think you know a lot about them, there may be new things to discover if you have the courage to go there.” (Mark Merrill)

And it does take courage. It also takes gumption and grit to challenge yourself when you’ve let yourself fall into the trap of marital complacency. Additionally, you will need to get to a place of “mindfulness.” You will need a “made up mind” in order to fight a lazy marriage attitude.

“Dr. John Gottman states that ‘couples often ignore each other’s emotional needs out of mindlessness, not malice.’ So, if you absentmindedly leave laundry on the floor or dirty dishes in the sink, it most likely isn’t with malicious intent. In fact, there probably isn’t any intent on your part, but rather a lack of mindfulness about your partner’s needs to have a clean house, which could lead to a conflict. To minimize or avoid that conflict, practice daily mindfulness about what your partner needs from you.” (The Gottman Institute

So this is a wakeup call to all of us. Are you (are we) ready to mix things up a bit? Look for ways to bless your spouse. Ask him or her if there is anything you can do within the next few days that will bless them.

That will certainly wake up him or her. It could actually introduce excitement. They may be confused for a few moments. But after they shake off the confusion, they could get quite excited. It’s like, “What do you mean? Is this a trick question? Do you mean I didn’t have to nag, or push at you to do this?” THAT’S a blessing in itself, but don’t stop there. Actually do what they ask of you.

And then look for other ways to take your marriage to a new level. Flirt with your spouse. Keep in mind that your marriage CAN be crippled by apathy. It can also die from boredom. Don’t let this happen. Look for ways to stir things up (in pleasant ways). You did this when you were dating each other. Just make a point of looking for ways to do this now that you are married.

There is still time to sign up to join us in Branson at the end of this month for Romance Uncensored. Click on the link here to sign up.

Because Your Spouse Matters

Kris

Men…Lets Be Honest.

Men…Let’s be honest. 2020 was not our year. We made excuses as to why we could not complete our goals. We failed in our priorities. We failed to lead as we were called to do. As we look back, we can see that in nearly every aspect of our lives, 2020 had some sort of impact, mostly negative I am sure. What is ironic about last year being 2020 is that 20/20 signifies perfect vision. When it comes to our vision and eye sight, we all want 20/20 and we want to be able to achieve that without any sort of corrective lenses. But the truth is that many of us still need corrective lenses to achieve 20/20 vision.

My goal for 2021 this year is to grow in many facets of my life this year. I hope to grow more as a

husband

father

entrepreneur

friend

mentor

In order to achieve that growth, I am developing a Growth Plan for 2021. I am not sure yet what it will look like. I hope that it will include some type of mentorship with other men for accountability.

A growth plan is a kind of a guideline, that helps to show the skills one needs to acquire and the goals one needs to achieve by changing the way of your life in a positive direction. Besides, planning about the future gives you better control over their life. Also, it helps to guide them on days when they feel demotivated and down. Having a personal growth plan helps in finding out how effective one is in their everyday life. 

If you would be interested in being a part of a mentorship/accountability group, let me know.

Because People Matter,

Kris

What is on your 2021 reading list?

We all know that 2020 was definitely the year to forget. For many it was a year of heartbreak, loss and mourning. For others it was a year of growth and perseverance. I am thankful that we have closed the 2020 chapter and opened a new one here in 2021.

So in looking ahead for 2021, I am needing to update my reading list. I am looking for your recommendations and want to know what must be on my list for 2021 in the following topic areas.

Leadership

Productivity

Entrepreneurship

Faith

Marriage

Because People Matter,

Kris

Spiritual Markers

Markers 

 

We are getting ready to start the second half of the year. 

As I think about the fact that we are almost to June, I look back over my life to reflect how my life is different now than what it was at the beginning of the year.  I look back at the "Spiritual Markers" in my life to be able to see where I have grown and where I have not grown.

What is your spiritual growth plan? 

How is God using you this year?

Will your life be any different at the end of the year than it was at the beginning?

What are the spiritual markers in your life?

Do you know how to recognize them?

How are you keeping track of your spiritual growth?

 

Because People Matter,

Kris

Mosaic Story

Being transparent is not something that comes easy to me. However, with the work that God is doing in my life, He demands total transparency. I know that after I share this I will have some critics, some who doubt what I say and hopefully some encourager’s. There was a time in my life that I walked away from God and ultimately walked away from my family and marriage. I was only concerned about Kris and what he wanted. In doing so, I found myself in an affair. I didn’t care how it affected my marriage or my family, I was simply living in the moment. I deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan 3 times and had decided that I could take care of myself and did not need God. In the end, I lost my marriage and my family. It was then that I realized how important God was needed in my life. I moved from Greenwood to Fort Smith after arriving home from Afghanistan. I started a new chapter in my life and began to seek Gods plan and will for my life. My relationship with my kids was restored and I love daddy weekends with my babies. I met a very Godly woman and just recently started a new chapter together with her in marriage. I moved out of my apartment in Fort Smith and we have a house in Van Buren The Lord has been stirring my heart for something great for Him. It has kept me up at night and at times made it hard not to shout it out. The Lord has been burdening and stirring my heart about the number who people who have given up on church or been burned by church or who simply think they are to “bad” for church. They are over 22,000 people in Van Buren and an estimated 40% who are unchurched. That equates to around 8,000 unchurched people. This passion and vision that I truly believe the Lord has placed on my life is to plant a new church here in Van Buren: “Mosaic Van Buren”. A mosaic is a piece of art made up of broken pieces of glass and ceramic of different colors and shapes, and we are just like that…….a bunch of broken people of different cultures and backgrounds and different stories brought together to create God’s perfect art. It is my prayer and desire for God to use me as He wishes. We are in the prenatal stages of Mosaic Van Buren. There was a message at church a few weeks back that was a convicting one for me in that I must allow God to use me regardless of what I have done. God has a plan to use me and if I tell God NO and do not allow Him to use me then He will find someone else who says YES.

I have since learned that ALL I have is God and I seek to serve Him with my whole being. I have always known that God has called me to ministry but everyone around me told me that I was no longer fit because of my actions and the decisions that I made, especially after my affair and divorce. Some critics are even worse now that I am married again.

I have this passion and vision to to reach the unchurched. Many churches today are content with who they are reaching. Many churches dont want the “trash” that come with lots in the community. I have this passion and vision to plant a church here in Van Buren that operates to seek out those who have given up on church, have to much “garbage” to come to church, who are broken, hurting and an outcast. Mosaic Van Buren would be a place made up of shattered, broken people who come together and serve an amazing God creating a beautiful thing for Jesus. Just as the word Mosaic is defined.

Barefoot for Jesus

Yesterday I had the awesome privilege to worship with Pastor Ken Patterson and Grace International Church in lovely downtown Baltimore. This was the first time meeting Ken and Grace International Church. Ken is very passionate about the Gospel and about his relationship with Jesus. Kens’ passion overflows into his vision for Grace International and his passion to preach a unified Gospel message for all. What makes Grace International a unique church in my opinion is that they desire to be a multi-ethnic, multi-cultural church in the Baltimore area. Kens’ message yesterday was out of Joshua 3. Ken made a profound statement that really struck me and has really got me thinking.

In Joshua 3, we read about the tribes of Israel crossing the Jordan River. The unique thing here is in Joshua 3:13. “And when the “soles” of their feet….shall rest in the waters of the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan shall be cut off from flowing.” The people were able to cross unharmed. Ken encouraged the listeners to find out what “your “Jordan” is” and what is it that God wants you to possess?

Ken shared further that the passion of Grace International (@unthinkchurch) is that everyone will feel welcome and that we can become barefoot for Jesus and worship him together, leaving our differences at the door and worshiping together as one body.

I think that this is the beginning of an awesome movement of worship, where all people of all races, all life backgrounds, all walks of life can come together, united as one and worship our one true living Savior.

Will you join me and @unthinkchurch in becoming “Barefoot for Jesus” this year?

love God. love people

Kris

Summer Reading List

7-Practices-of-Effective-Ministry-9781590523735-md 12-essential-skills-for-great-preaching-second-edition-wayne-mcdill-hardcover-cover-art 9781590525142 Books

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I am usually not much of a reader, but I have recently found a new appreciation for reading and here is what I have picked so far for my summer reading list.

Weird by Craig Groeschel

Crazy by Francis Chan

Plan B by Pete Wilson

Simple Church by Thom Rainer & Eric Geiger

Radical Together by David Platt

The Millennials by Thom & Jess Rainer

12 Essential Skills for Great Preaching by Wayne McDill

Communicating for A Change by Andy Stanley

7 Practices of Effective Ministry by Andy Stanley

What is on your reading list this summer?  What other books do you recommend that I put on my reading list?

 

Because People Matter

Kris

Spiritual Markers

Markers 

 

We are getting ready to start the second half of the year. 

As I think about the fact that we are almost to June, I look back over my life to reflect how my life is different now than what it was at the beginning of the year.  I look back at the "Spiritual Markers" in my life to be able to see where I have grown and where I have not grown.

What is your spiritual growth plan? 

How is God using you this year?

Will your life be any different at the end of the year than it was at the beginning?

What are the spiritual markers in your life?

Do you know how to recognize them?

How are you keeping track of your spiritual growth?

 

Because People Matter,

Kris