Archive for: July, 2023

How the Past is Still Present – Questions Church Leaders Need to Ask

Jul 02 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Do you know the story of your church? Leaders need to pay attention to the past to make sense of the present. A friend told me that he went to a movie at the multiplex and walked into the wrong theater. He ended up in the middle of an earlier showing of the same movie. Nothing made sense, and 20 minutes later the film was over. As a therapist, he compared it to the way we are born into our families in the middle of the plot, which is sometimes confusing to us.

In the same way, when leaders walk into an organization for the first time, they are entering an ongoing story. Our particular movie may have been running for two years or two hundred. But no matter the age of the organization, there are some plot elements we need to learn.

The more we can find out about the history of the organizations we lead, the better off we will be. Patterns that seem confusing to us may begin to make sense. And the more we know the story, the less likely we are to be ambushed or controlled by it. Some questions to ask include the following:

When, how and why was this organization founded?
What is the history of leadership transitions?
How long did previous pastors last?
What pastors do people still talk about? And which ones do they never talk about?
We can learn more about what to expect from what we learn from these questions. The more intense the circumstances at the beginning, such as a split from another group, the more likely is there to be intensity carried over into the present. Church leaders may face more challenges with a history like this.
We do not ask these questions all at once, but here and there as we go, over time. Notice how much people do and do not know, and how willing they are to talk about it. The more curious we can be about the situation, the more we can stay in a “research” frame of mind, the better. Willfully trying to fix past problems or to make up for past deficiencies can be the path to frustration. Being a learner can actually make our role in the church more transformative.

We cannot rewind the tape to watch the whole story ourselves. But we can, little by little, get a more complete sense of the ongoing story whose cast we have joined. And we will be better able to play the role of leader with our own unique twist.

Comments are off for this post

Organizing Your Paragraphs For a Clear, Well-Written Presentation

Jul 02 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Each paragraph in your text should contain one main topic that relates to the rest of the ideas presented in a piece. While nothing’s stopping you from throwing ten disparate subjects into the same block of sentences, that’s not a good idea if you’re aiming to compose clear, well-written text.

1. Your main, controlling idea should appear in a topic statement (using one or more sentences), either at the start of the paragraph or close to it. Think of it as the introduction to an essay – it sets a meaningful pattern about what the remained of the text will be about.

2. Discuss general ideas before going into specifics. That way, the reader will get to wrap his head around the big picture, before getting swarmed in by the details.

3. There are several ways of supporting the main idea of a paragraph. Each one can be useful, depending on both the subject and the associated information you plan to present. The following are some of the most common ways to do it:

Definition. This entails explaining the meaning of the topic, answering the major questions about it (who, what, when, where, why and how).
Classification. You classify the topic based on its numerous characteristics.
Description. You detail the item’s numerous characteristics.
Expansion. Here, you basically expand on the subject, paraphrasing expert opinion and previous findings on the subject.
Exemplification. You give examples that give the main idea credence, including statistics, facts and research findings.
Others. We won’t go into the details of the rest. Suffice to say, there are many other ways to organize a paragraph in order to support its central concept, including cause and effect, comparison, etc.
4. Use a writing expert software. Apart from organizing your paragraphs, you need to make sure that you use a good tool to help you iron out possible gaps in your writing. That will guarantee that your paragraphs aren’t only structured well, they read nice too.

Comments are off for this post

Pearse House in Bishop’s Stortford – A History to the Present Day

Jul 02 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Pearse House is a charming Victorian Mansion located in the town of Bishop´s Stortford, on the border of Hertfordshire and Essex. Only minutes from the M11 and Stansted Airport it is set in its own grounds and has tons of character.

Pearse House was built as a family home in 1870 and used as such until the Second World War. I has had many different uses on its journey to its present use as an Hotel and Conference Centre.

These include:

Annexe to Herts & Essex Hospital 1939 – 1943.

Officers mess to USAF 344th Bombardment Group 1944/45.

Herts & Essex Girls School Boarding house 1946 – 1960 (when headmistress was Miss Pearse, hence the renaming of the house in the 60′s).

Hertfordshire Educational Committee 1960 – 1977.

The Present Day
Whilst the area around has changed dramatically with the growth of both the town of Bishop’s Stortford and Stansted Airport, ironically the house itself has remained much as it was and would be easily recognised by its former owners.

The current owners have tried to retain the atmosphere and comfort of this Victorian family home of the 19th Century, whilst adding the modern comforts and facilities demanded by 21st Century business clients.

Now converted into a hotel and conference centre, it offers fine dining and several meeting and conference rooms for both business and private use.

Hotel: Pearse House Hotel is a three star, privately owned manor house, with 38 rooms. All come with en-suite facilities, telephone and free WiFi.

Dining: Pearse House Hotel has a choice of two dining rooms. The main dining room can seat up to 80 people and the lounge dining room 45. Private dining facilities are also available. Traditional cooked food ia available throughout the week including cooked English or Continental style Breakfast, hot & cold lunches and a Sunday roast.

Functions & Special Occasions: With many years experience, Pearse House can offer Weddings, Funerals, Christenings, Anniversaries, Birthdays, private dinner parties, receptions. Just about any occasion you can think of.

Conferences: There are seven conference rooms available to hire either by the hour or by the day. Also available is delegate accommodation, meals, and refreshments.

Park & Fly. If you are flying from Stansted Airport, why not stay a comfortable night at Pearse House Hotel and then take advantage of the free transfer service to the Airport.

Pearse House Hotel can be found at the following location…

Comments are off for this post

How a Cold Shower Can Help You Be Present

Jul 02 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

Sounds like a crazy proposal doesn’t it? Taking a cold shower is for Samurai, not someone like me, you say. The thing is, the benefits of cold showers can be felt by everyone. You do not have to treat the cold shower like stepping underneath a waterfall. I ease into the shower. That way the experience won’t cause me to scream as the cold water hits my back. Nevertheless, don’t fear the coldness of the shower! Here are the steps that I take to have a cold shower.

1. Start with your water at lukewarm temperature.

2. Step under the water until you get used to the temperature.

3. While the shower is somewhat warm, do your cleaning routine.

4. Get in position for the cold shower. What I do is face the wall, so that if I looked up, the shower-head would be spraying directly on my face. The water will be dripping onto your face and body. (Make sure to have a space to breathe when the water rushes over your face).

5. Now is where we begin to turn the water colder. Move the knob just a little bit, and wait until the stream for 15-30 seconds. By then, the water will be feeling a little bit warmer.

6. As the water gets colder, you start breathing deeper. As your breathing deepens, you become more and more present, noticing the space around you.

I can tell that you want an explanation for why to take a cold shower. I gave you steps, by why would you ever want to put yourself in a “painful” situation like that. Here are the benefits I have noticed from a cold shower.

1. It makes me aware of sudden feelings of panic that may randomly hit me, and make me feel a tightness in my chest.

2. Because I notice this panic, for some reason, I am creepily calm. After you take your shower, if someone asks you if you are ok, that’s probably because you have a somber face and look murderous.

3. Once I get into this state of calm, I am really in control of what thoughts I let affect me. They fly through my head and I am just an observer.

4. Another odd thing I notice when I am in the moment after my shower is that there is lots of complaining and negative thoughts. All this negativity makes me aware of the negativity that might be passing through my head, and brings me into a state of presence.

This relaxation is like nothing I have ever felt before. After this experience, I am totally present for much longer than normal. I suggest having this experience at some point, because the daily benefits are fantastic!

Comments are off for this post

Using Salmon to Great Effect in Your Cooking Presentation

Jul 02 2023 Published by admin under Uncategorized

One of the great struggles for anyone preparing meals for the family is how to balance flavor with nutrition. If meals were simply a way to shovel down vitamins and minerals, there would be little to worry about. However, there is a longstanding tradition of trying to excite the taste buds and make meals more than just a pit stop for fuel. If you make sure that you get seafood into the meal plan at least a few times every week, you will have a variety of tools at your disposal.

Alaska Sockeye Salmon is one of the seafood species which is immediately recognizable once you know what you are looking for. Its deep, rich red color hints at the excellent flavor found within its flesh. While it is the second most plentiful species of all salmon from Alaska, it is being underutilized in many kitchens. Whether in salads or as the man course, Sockeye Salmon will add a new dimension to any meal. Here are three quick ideas on how to use it.

In salads for lunch: Salads at lunchtime can fall into a couple of boring categories. There is the chef’s salad with a lot of vegetables and there is also the Caesar’s with chicken. Using Romaine lettuce is always as good idea, as its dark green color adds to the depth of the presentation, but you can completely change courses by adding pieces of Sockeye Salmon to the mix. It will change the way you think about salads for lunch.

In kebabs off the grill: Whenever you want to spice things up around the grill, use Sockeye to great effect. In between some grilled peppers and onions, the dark red fish will impress any guests and have everyone clamoring for more. Make sure you have plenty available before introducing this at a party.

In tacos: Salmon tacos make a nutritious and very flavorful meal. Using Sockeye will help you turn the presentation up a notch as well. Against the rather dull backdrops of corn tortillas and beans, the intense color will stand out and outclass even the lettuce or onions. This dish will be a hit with the family right away.

Comments are off for this post