categories: books
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April 8th, 2011

by Bobby Gruenewald

A Weird Approach to Perspective

It’s pretty normal to want life to roll along smoothly. And in those seasons when it doesn’t, we might wonder, “Why can’t things just be normal?” But God wants more for us than normal—you might say he has Weird things in mind for us.

If you listen, God will show you something that makes your heart ache on behalf of his. He will bless you with a burden.

If you’re like most normal -people, you’re probably wondering, “Why in the world would I want a burden?” Most of us feel good when we avoid burdens — after all, isn’t life hard enough? Why ask God for more trials, trauma, and tears? It’s normal to want to avoid pain — human even. But God didn’t put us here on earth just to feel good and enjoy ourselves. He doesn’t give us our lives so we can master techniques in avoiding pain.

He puts us here to make an eternal difference.

He puts us here to show everyone around us how much he loves them.

He puts us here to be his hands and feet, his body and his heart.

Pursuing the Weird life God is calling us to is anything but normal. And completely worth it.

If you want to delve deeper into the Weird life, you can pick up a copy of the book or download it from:

Amazon

Barnes & Noble

Mardel

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April 7th, 2011

by Bobby Gruenewald

A Weird Approach to Parenting

With two young kids and one on the way, I’m especially interested in what Craig has to say about parenting in his new book Weird. With six kids, he has three times the experience I do :) I found the following excerpt a very practical way we can bring God into our everyday lives as we parent:

The best thing you can do for your kids is to show them God working in you on a daily basis. I love the practical teaching of Deuteronomy 6:6 – 9: “These commandments that I give you today are to be upon your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.”

You can do all these things God’s Word encourages us to do. They can become a part of how you do life — in fact, they are only really effective if they’re a consistent part of everyday life. Kids are quick to pick up on our real feelings and motives, so the only way to be a truly weird, life-changing parent is to express your faith organically.

Talk about God with your kids in the morning on the way to school, let them know when you pray for them during their day, and share a meaningful truth from Scripture on the way home from dance. Put a favorite Bible verse on the wall alongside Miley Cyrus and Justin Bieber. Let them know the hardest part of your day, as appropriate for their age, and how you connect it back to your trust in God. Make spiritual conversations a part of how you do life.

Transparency is something I strive for, so I like the idea of leveraging that in parenting our kids.

Weird has lots of practical ideas like the above. You can get it in print or download it from:

Amazon

Barnes & Noble

Mardel

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categories: books, time management
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April 6th, 2011

by Bobby Gruenewald

A Weird Approach to Time Management

Over the next few days, I’d like to share some of my favorite parts from Weird: Because Normal Isn’t Working. In the book, Craig looks at what it means to be weird in five key areas: time, money, relationships, sex, and values. Today’s excerpt tackles time:

We’re always rushed, always on the move, never having enough time. Almost everyone I know has little room for error in their schedule. Tragically, most people have little time for the things in life that they would say are the most important to them. When we overschedule ourselves in the belief that we can do everything, we stop being human and try to become godlike — not only impossible but also incredibly arrogant. Most of us are living at a pace that is not only unsustainable; it’s also unbiblical.

Instead of our typical conclusion that we simply don’t have enough time, what if we embraced the truth — no matter how weird or counterintuitive it might seem?

You have enough time to do everything God wants you to do.

God has given you everything you need to accomplish all that he wants you to do, including enough time (see 2 Peter 1:3). We don’t need more time. We need to use the time we already have differently. You have time for what you choose to invest your time in. Every day most of us say, “I just don’t have time to work out . . . to read the Bible . . . to go to church this week . . . to meet for lunch . . . to add one more thing.” But the truth is, we find time for what’s important to us. If golf is really a priority to us, we find time to play golf. If going to dinner with our friends matters, we make it happen. If tanning, working out, or getting our hair cut is a priority, we seem to find time. Catch yourself the next time you’re about to say, “I don’t have time” for something. Tell yourself the truth: either it’s not a priority and you’re guarding your time for good reason, or you simply aren’t willing to choose to spend your time on it.

Great challenge for me. How about you?

If you are tired of being normal…you should get weird! You can get it in print or download it from:

Amazon

Barnes & Noble

Mardel

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categories: books
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April 5th, 2011

by Bobby Gruenewald

Weird Giveaway Winners

It’s been great to see the excitement around the launch of Weird today! Thanks to the 1,000+ of you who tweeted, commented, and took part on Facebook to enter the book giveaway. We’ll end the suspense right now and announce the Twitter and Swerve winners of Weird

Twitter:

@desmaw
@drbexl
@the90nine
@brettbrandewie
@timscholz
@samuelhaden
@jeffjansen64
@jabern82
@schastainrbc
@jmgreenhill

Swerve Comments:

Brittany Jones
Steven Blumer
Kristen Teaff
Andrew Novell
Billy Creech
Mark Combs
Jessica Chyzy
Adam Keeton
Ryan Rotman
Nathan Martin
Michael Cooper
Adam Buzard
William Jacques
TC Robinson
Salomon Duran
Nathan Worsowicz
Robb Haney
DJ Rose
Lyle Thompson
Brian Tooley
Todd Kemp
Kuma Turner
Lee Snyder
Douglas Baker
Blake Sawyer
Kevin Bosman
Mark Yoon Lee
Scott Thomson
Michael Goldsmith
Chad Wilkerson

Bloggers:

Kyle Dowden
Paul Stohler
Mark McIntyre
Herb Willis
Pam Matthews
Stevan Sheets
Joe Rollins
Roman Randall
Steven Doss
Austin May

Facebook winners will be announced on Craig’s Facebook page.

Congratulations to all of you! We’ll be in touch to get the book sent out to you.

We hope the rest of you still have an opportunity to read Weird: Because Normal Isn’t Working! You can order now at any one of these booksellers, and if you’re in the Edmond, Oklahoma area tonight stop by Mardel to pick up a copy and have it signed by Craig:

Amazon

Barnes & Noble

Mardel

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categories: books
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April 5th, 2011

by Bobby Gruenewald

Weird Book Giveaway

Weird launches today, and to celebrate, we’re giving away 50 60 copies of the book!

****Update: we’re having so much fun with this that we’re giving away an additional 10 copies! See below…

Here are the ways you can enter to win by 2:00 CDT today—that’s April 5 (only one is required to enter, but you’re welcome to do all three four!) :

Swerve (30 copies): Leave a comment below to enter, and email your contact info to Lori.Tapp@LifeChurch.tv.

Twitter (10 copies): Post or retweet the following from your Twitter account:

Weird by @CraigGroeschel is out: http://go2.lc/weird RT by 2pm CT Apr. 5 for a chance to win a copy! http://bit.ly/weirdgive

Facebook (10 copies): Like Craig’s Facebook page (if you haven’t already) and comment on the giveaway post you’ll find there.

Your blog: For the first ten people who commit to posting a review on their blog and linking it to Amazon or Barnes & Noble, we’ll send you a free copy. Just email your blog address to Lori.Tapp@LifeChurch.tv.

Though we hope you win a book, you can also order a copy right now:

Amazon

Barnes & Noble

Mardel

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categories: Uncategorized, books
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April 5th, 2011

by Bobby Gruenewald

Weird: Because Normal Isn’t Working

Craig’s latest book is officially launched and we’re thrilled to see how God uses it to help people break free from the norm and live a radically abnormal (and much more fulfilling) life. Here’s a quick video from Craig about Weird, a sample from the book, and some helpful links.

You can get your copy now:

Amazon

Barnes & Noble

Mardel

Description:

Normal people are stressed, overwhelmed, and exhausted. Many of their relationships are, at best, strained and, in most cases, just surviving. Even though we live in one of the most prosperous places on earth, normal is still living paycheck to paycheck and never getting ahead. In our oversexed world, lust, premarital sex, guilt, and shame are far more common than purity, virginity, and a healthy married sex life. And when it comes to God, the majority believe in him, but the teachings of scripture rarely make it into their everyday lives. Simply put, normal isn’t working. Groeschel’s WEIRD views will help you break free from the norm to lead a radically abnormal (and endlessly more fulfilling) life.

A Sample Chapter

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April 4th, 2011

by Bobby Gruenewald

It’s Going to Be a Weird Week

weird-cover_I’m really excited about the release of Craig’s newest book tomorrow, Weird: Because Normal Isn’t Working. It’s true, isn’t it? Normal really isn’t working. Looking around (or maybe even in the mirror), we’re faced with debt, broken relationships, stress, and more. But things don’t have to be that way…if we’re willing to get Weird.

This book shares the way Craig has grown to embrace that label and the difference it can make in all of our lives. And I can attest that I’ve seen him make some pretty weird decisions :) But they’re precisely the ones that have led to opportunities for LifeChurch.tv that we never could have imagined.

Here are a few of the ways you can get Weird with us:

  • This weekend we started a series at our church to explore the ways we can go against the grain of our culture to embrace a God kind of Weird. Feel free to stop by Church Online and check it out over the next few weeks.
  • Stop by one of Craig’s book signings if you’re in Oklahoma. He’ll be at Mardel in Edmond (33rd & Boulevard) on Tuesday, April 5, at 6:00pm, and at Sam’s Club in Tulsa (71st & Mingo) on Thursday, April 7, from 6:00-8:00pm.
  • Order your copy of Weird from Amazon, Mardel, or Barnes & Noble. And if you’d like to order a case of books for your staff or church, Mardel is offering a discounted rate.
  • Check back here all week as we’ll be featuring excerpts, news, and some free books for a few lucky Swerve readers!

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categories: books, church online
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April 1st, 2011

by Bobby Gruenewald

Free Resource for Online Ministry

A good friend of mine, Dana Byers, has put together a great free ebook to help ministries that are considering or wanting to learn more about online ministry. Dana and her husband, Chris, have volunteered and served in several capacities on our team and have a non-profit ministry called BlueDoor.tv.

The Art of Online Ministry offers helpful details like:

  • Developing content for online experiences
  • Working with volunteers
  • Spreading the word about your online ministry
  • Equipment and resource recommendations
  • And lots more…

I encourage you to check it out!

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