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Showing posts from October, 2012

What To Do First to Make a Profit

The PF Women Team at our Annual Team Retreat  ~ 2018 Today on Seth Godin's blog, he said: It's tempting to decide to make a profit first, then invest in training, people, facilities, promotion, customer service and most of all, doing important work. In general, though, it goes the other way. Yes, it does. If you are waiting to make a profit before you do these things, in my experience you're  not going to make a profit. So many organizations, ministries and churches are struggling with financial issues. I know your pain. As anyone who follows our story knows, our ministry was in a ton of debt four years ago when I came on as director.  Since that time, we've gotten out of debt and turned a profit every year.  God has done amazing things through out team, for which we give Him the glory! I find that what Seth is saying here is absolutely true, with one disclaimer. For Christian leaders, spiritual disciplines must always be first. Before we started inve

Just Say NO to Family Secrets!

Today's post is from the relationship advice column that I write for Insight , a Tampa newspaper. This past month I tackled two questions and this was the second. I discussed the first one in yesterday's post.   I'd love to hear your feedback. What has your experience been with family secrets?   Dear Deanna: I’ve recently discovered a family secret that has me in so much pain, I am thinking about going to therapy. I am trying to cope the best I can but each day it is hard to even put one foot in front of the other and keep going. The information I found out has made it almost impossible to think about anything else. The people in my family who kept the secret are upset I found out and don’t understand why I’m taking it so hard. Right now it seems like no one understands. Talking to them about it just makes me angrier. Should I go to a counselor and be done with it? They don’t want me to share about it with anyone outside our family and I feel trapped.  - Essie

When Friends Invite People Along (And You're Not Happy!!)

My post today is from the relationship column that I write for Insight, a Tam pa newspaper . This month I tackled several questions and this was one of them . I'd love to hear your thoughts about how you handle this when it happens to you.   Dear Deanna: I am having problems with a friend who invites me to do things with her and then after I have already agreed, invites someone else to join us. This may not appear to be any big deal, however my discomfort with the situation is that she often asks people I’m not particularly fond of and don’t want to spend an evening or an activity with…people like my ex-sister-in-law. Yes, AWKWARD!!!  Once I’ve agreed to attend, I don’t like to back out just because she invites someone to join us that I’m not comfortable with. But I’m really tired of dreading these times together. What do I do? I don’t want to lose my friend but I also don’t want to keep dreading her events and invitations. Signed, Dreading Dear Dreading:

Do You Fit In...Or Stand Out?

Nine years ago. Six years old. Elementary School. Me: I really don't want you to wear that to school tomorrow, Savanna. I believe your classmates will laugh at you. Savanna: [batting her big blue eyes at me] I don't care if they laugh at me, Momma.  Me: Oooookay. [gulp] I will confess that in the beginning, I feared for her. I thought at some point, she would get off the school bus, run home crying and throw herself down. Grieved by her classmates taunting. I had visions of bullying. But it didn't work that way. She became the trend setter. The one who stands out.   Fitting in. Standing out. People are driven to do one of those two things. I've always been driven to stand out. Sadly, I feared when my children went this direction. All of them went the stand out route, in one way or another. Like me, Dustin isn't someone you would describe as caring a lot about fashion. But, he is a creative type -- a communicator who stands out. He stands ou

Weekend Wrap Up

Before I wrap up blogging this weekend, I thought I'd share some highlights from Dustin's birthday... The table was set with his favorite meal ~ pot roast and all the trimmings...including... Homemade yeast rolls...yummo... And the one thing he wanted more than anything...a Batman cake. It seemed to make him real happy... And that's good because Moms are happy when their children are happy. We've got a full day at Celebration Church today and our Holy Roller Night Outreach tonight. So much fun! I hope everyone is having a great weekend. Much love,

He's All Growed Up! (Sigh)

He's 23 today. Twenty-freakin'-three. [sigh] Time stand still? Please stand still. Changes are hard. Even good ones. And they just keep coming. And there's nothing I can do about it. Nothing. Lord knows I've tried. And like most other things in life, it's out of my control. (And that's probably a good thing, most times.) At least he's turned out perfectly wonderful. The best a parent could ask for. I'm talking about one, Dustin Michael Shrodes, if you didn't know by now. He's our youth pastor now, by the way. Just in case you crawled out from under a rock and didn't know. Or you are reading my blog for the first time and have no idea who the main characters in this real life scenario are. Please meet my absolutely perfect first born son: You can read some day-to-day happenings of his early years in a hand written blog I kept and shared here a while ago. You'll love it, I promise, if you have any sentimental

It's Fun Friday! And, where I'm blogging today...

Today is Fun Friday, which's my day off! I love Fridays. Adore them. Crave them. What could be better than a day to do what we want to do? (To have more time to do what you want to do, vs. what you have to do, go here , where I'm helping lots of people.) I am blogging today at Lost Daughters , one of my favorite places to be. I enjoy blogging there on occasion when I get brave enough to do so. :) More than that, I enjoy the sisterhood I've found there, with my adult adoptee friends who understand on a level that is impossible for others. Today at Lost Daughters, I'm sharing specifically about what I'm doing to help orphans. Here's my post, if you're interested in following me there today. Have a most blessed day! Much love,  

I hate stigmas

Stigma: a distinguishing mark of social disgrace. Who decides what they are, anyway? What I hate about them is that because they are established by some, many don't get the help they need. I know so many people who hold back in pursuing support or wholeness because a social stigma is attached to whatever they deal with. Whether you have a physical condition or experienced some  type of trauma, if you don't pursue help because of a stigma it makes what you go through even worse. I am part of a support group. Sometimes I help others, and at other times I'm the one in need. The help I receive doesn't just make things bearable, it makes walking in true victory possible. Victory is not pasting on a smile and acting like nothing is wrong. Victory is acknowledging and facing the battle, and reaching out for the help you need to win it. I beg you, my friend, don't let a social stigma about anything hold you back from reaching for the help you need.  

3 Truths About Meeting a Need

Recently I attended a writer's conference in California. I had new business cards printed just prior to the conference, to take with me. Although I knew I would need cards, I gave no thought to a card holder. Soon after arriving I was smack dab in the midst of groups of writers who were networking and exchanging cards. Most of them had fancy little black or silver card holders. I had nothing. Each time someone said, "do you have a card?" I was left to stand there digging in my purse, pulling cards out of a little ziploc bag I had hastily stuffed them in prior to leaving for the airport. Ugh. How embarrassing. Everyone else had fancy schmancy...I had ziploc. I thought, "hhhmmmmm....what can I do? I am totally out-classed here..." So, I stepped into the ladies room and started going through the black hole that is my purse, rummaging for anything that might be a suitable business card holder. This is what I found: Yes. Seriously. I quickly mo

3 Ways to Improve a Relationship With Someone

1) Ask what the best part of their day was. 2) Ask what the worst part of their day was. 3) Ask how you can help. These work.  I speak from experience. Try it!

Where Can Girls Go With Their Questions?

Last night, a bunch of them came to Celebration Church , and to me. It was awesome. We laughed. We cried. We hugged. We went there. We talked about stuff some people are never brave enough to speak of. We tackled the tough issues. We were strengthened. "Can we do this all the time, PD? Like everyday?" they said. "Ummmm....everyday? Can we gather in person with this group every single day at the church?" I said..."In person...realistically, probably no. But can we get together on a regular basis in person? YES. Absolutely. Yes!!!" (And we can get together every day, on Facebook in between times!) Last night I gave each of the young ladies a stack of small papers and a pen as they came in. We sat in a circle. A bucket was placed in the center. I told them at any time during the evening they could get up and put a question in the bucket that they didn't feel comfortable to ask out loud. A lot of questions were asked out loud, but p

Weekend Wrap Up

I've been away a few weekends in a row at conferences, so this weekend I've been catching up on a lot of  house and yard work. So much that my leg muscles ache with each move! I might just take some ibuprofen to get through all my responsibilities today... The best part of my weekend so far was connecting with my support system at Lost Daughters .  The writers group there provides something for me that I've never had before and I'm so grateful.  I don't post blogs there all the time, yet. Just a few. I have a lot of them sitting in draft that I'm just not ready to publish. A few times I've even set them to publish and then moved them back to draft.  When dealing with issues that aren't ready for public consumption, I'm able to process them privately with the writer's group.  I've gone to counseling before but I must say, this is better because I'm actually talking to people who share the same experience. It's the missing ingredi

What Room Do You Clean First?

Where do you start when the whole house is messy? Mine has been out of sorts the past few weeks with being out of town for three conferences and lots of other stuff in between. I've been juggling the best I can but still have some catching up to do. Yesterday I needed to start somewhere and it was rather overwhelming but the choice was easy. I started on mine and Larry's room and bathroom first.  So often people prioritize the public areas that everyone sees first. (Entry way, living room, etc.) It makes sense. We all want the parts that everyone sees to look great. I have a bit of a different take on things though. I feel like there's nothing more important than the place where Larry and I spend time privately. It's that place that makes all the public things possible for us. Not just today but for the long haul. And make no mistake, we're in it for the long haul.  

How to Handle a Bad Day

"Depression hung over me like a black cloud...and it was hard to find my way out at the time..." These were my words during a sermon a few years ago and afterwards a lady rushed up to me and said, "you mean YOU were actually depressed? Because I can't even imagine that. You seem so...together... " Truth be told, all of us go through hard times. And all of us have rotten days. Me included. I happen to be having a good day today. But a while back I was having an absolutely horrible day. And because so many people seem to think people like me never have bad days like they do, I got the brilliant idea, "I'm going to video record my bad day!!!" Yes, I know that's kind of bizarre but I have a passion to share transparently with people.That's why this blog is about transparently leading and relating from a faith perspective. So I did what was for me, a courageous thing. I recorded scenes during 24 hours...even waking up in the morni