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Showing posts from April, 2016

Planning and Politics

Here in Canton we are finishing up with our Downtown Masterplan Project, formally titled #CantonForward: Etowah to the Loop
Etowah, referring to the Etowah River which runs through Canton, and "The Loop" is an informal name for our historic downtown, because it is surrounded by a pair of one-way streets.
The masterplanning process began last June when we selected Atlanta-based planning and architecture firm TSW as the City's consultants for the project.
With this large-scale and revitalization effort coming to a close, several observations have come to light from June until now. 
The core reality here is that planning is political. 
Not in a Democratic or Republican sense, but in that it heavily involves the general public and local society. Furthermore, because planning naturally impacts lives, opinions and views- whether we agree or not- are all at play.
Without public input, a plan cannot truly represent the desires and preferences of the public. In fact, without pu…

What is Worship?

This year our church Praise and Worship Team is undertaking an intense study of praise and worship- beyond the music. What exactly is praise and worship? How does it work? Why is God pleased in it?

Below is a letter I sent to the Praise and Worship Team earlier this afternoon. I hope it enriches and deepens your understanding of this sacrificial offering, as it does our Praise and Worship Team.

"But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth."- John 4:23-24
Worship is not music. Worship does not mean "lift your hands."
The core of worship is obedience. To worship is to become inferior to a superior.  
Worship is when our heart and spirit adores and connects with the Spirit of God. Worship is when the core of who we are is found loving Him.
When we worship God, we tell Him "You are better…

Organizational and Leadership Lessons from Rotary

Each day brings me closer to taking the gavel and becoming the next President of the Rotary Club of Canton. I am honored to serve the Club in such capacity.

As that first Tuesday in July draws near, I am already facing a barrage of decisions that will set the course for the arriving Rotary Year. This is no small feat as Rotary does so much good around the world and the Canton Club, in particular, is known as a trailblazing Club around the State and Rotary District 6910
There will be more about the Rotary Club of Canton in later posts. But, what I would like to share for now are three potent observations that have grabbed my attention as a current President-Elect.  Rotary Puts Others First. Rotary's mantra is "Service Above Self." That means putting the needs, deficiencies, and handicaps of others above your own. Rotary is Highly Organized. Rotary International expects incoming Club Presidents to align their goals with the expectations set forth by Rotary International, …

President Obama's Trip to Cuba Part 2

Yes, a Part 2.

President Obama's historic visit to Cuba was two weeks ago which, in today's fast-paced news cycle, is old, but nonetheless very relevant. It also carries significant impact on the world's present and future.

President Obama's visit to Cuba was the first by a sitting U.S. President in nearly 90 years. Those 90 years are characterized by embargoes, diplomatic mistrust, and near-nuclear warfare. Ironically enough, 90 is also the number of miles Cuba is from Miami.

During his visit, President Obama stated:

"Many suggested that I come here and ask the people of Cuba to tear something down. But I'm appealing to the young people of Cuba who will lift something up, building something new."
These comments refer to Cuba's communist government which places tight restrictions on many of the freedoms we have in the US, such as freedom of speech. President Obama advocated Cuba's societal and governmental advancement from communism to a democracy.