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How to Get The Internet to Work For You (

Lets make this simple. There are lots of things IFTTT can do. But the most usable is sending your instagram photos to twitter. Start there and then you will realize how awesome this service is.

When you post an Instagram to twitter it only includes the link to the Instagram post. But twitter has a solid native photo integration. So use this recipe and it will automagically send that photo over to twitter. (It might take a couple minutes.)

IFTTT Recipe: If I instagram then tweet the image. connects instagram to twitter

I also use this service all the time to save photos that are used with a #hashtag that I’m promoting. In 2014 with the PennDel Youth we used the hashtag #in14. We then set up IFTTT rules to save any Instgram photos to Dropbox. We could then do whatever we wanted with the photos.

Explore the website it can do amazing things.

What’s a gTLD and Why

A great domain name is worth gold. sold for around $500,000 a couple of years back and I wish I had half a million to pick it up. That would have been so cool. But are the dot-com days numbered?

Over the next 3 years the international domain registry will release over 700 new Top Level Domains (TLD). You can check out the full list here.

I already picked up a couple, one of them is…

Searching for the perfect domain just became so much easier but so much harder at the same time. We now will have so many more options than before. I would never be able to afford but I do have my sights on a couple of cool domains to add to my collection.

For churches that have a bad domain name like it is time to find a new domain. Pick up and now you have a much better and easier website to market.

This also presents another difficulty. Will we have to print www with every domain? For several years now www has become less popular when adding a domain to materials. How will you know if is just a design element or if it is a websites. or either way. This is an exciting new time in website creation.

Drop me a message if you need help setting up a new website or updating an old one!

noah the movie april 2014

5 Reasons I’m Seeing Noah Opening Weekend

I know there is a lot of controversy surrounding the new movie loosely based on the biblical story of Noah coming out April 28. Delia and I don’t see movies at the theater often. We  love Redbox and rent a movie a week or so. Dropping $20-$30 on a movie night out is just too much. But for Noah, we are making an exception. There are very few stories in the Bible that are as epic as the end of the world. I plan on seeing Noah on opening weekend, and here’s why:

1. It looks Epic.
Have you seen the behind the scenes footage or the trailer? This movie looks amazing. If they did one thing right, it’s the scale and size of the ark. I have heard the animal scene isn’t long enough, but still it looks pretty awesome in the trailer.

When I think about the Bible, the story of Noah is on the top of the list of large-scale crazy epic moments that need amazing special effects. I am excited to see how it may have all happened. This is a movie that needs to be seen on the big screen, maybe even IMAX. I just don’t think my 42 inch screen is going to do it justice.

2. The End of the World
Armageddon, War of the Worlds, 2012The Day After Tomorrow, these movies show what the world is like when it is all going to end. But in Noah, it actually ends. Life as it was, ended. Thousands… Millions of people died. Life started over. Noah and his family have the future of the world in their hands. Crazy!

noah and the ark3. Nothing Hollywood does can change what actually happened.
The story of Noah and his family is encapsulated in 4 chapters in the book of Genesis. If you have not read it recently go do it now. (Gen 6-9) If you started with the beginning of chapter 6, you might be a little confused by the story of giants and sons of God. The Bible is crazy! We can’t read this story with our own world view, we have to understand this was a different world than ours, almost literally.

If I was to write a script and shoot a movie with the story of Noah, there are a few gaps I would need to fill in because the Bible doesn’t give us all the details. Why exactly does Noah curse Ham? Simply because he saw him naked? Was there something deeper? (Gen 9:20-27)

One of my favorite details is that “God shut the door behind [Noah]” (Gen 7:16). In my mind the door to this ship was so large that Noah and his sons couldn’t close it. Only God could close it! But that might not be how you read that. Just like other stories from history that Hollywood has reenacted, Pearl Harbor, Titanic, Gettysburg, and others… Hollywood is going to add it’s own spin. I expect that. But it won’t change what I believe happened or what the Bible says.

4. Noah’s my great great great…
Believe it or not, I’m related to Noah. So this story is a Hollywood version of what my ancestor could have been like. What did his world look like? How did he live? Also, there is this subplot of Methuselah, the oldest man who ever lived, who dies in the flood. God kills the oldest man in the world in the flood. You can’t make this stuff up!

5. I will make my own decision.
In a week I might be writing a post about plot holes, blatant non-historically accurate story changes, unresolved character arcs or terrible continuity issues. BUT, I’m not going to call the kettle black before I see it. I have read reviews and articles trashing the movie. I want to see if for myself.

I’m excited to see this movie. I have been disappointed by movies in the past. Voyage of the Dawntreader totally rewrote half the story, but it was still epic and I was able to see Reepicheep go to the end of the world. This is a movie that I have to see before I can draw my conclusion.

Who wants to join me?

PennDel Youth Convention 2014 Countdown

Countdown Restarted (Convention Open and Close)

The theme for the 2013 PennDel Youth Convention was “Countdown.” This theme played nicely with promotion. We were able to make an event out of counting down the days till the event. We had kids post pictures of clocks for a chance to meet the band backstage and then we sold watches at the event…so many great ideas came with Countdown.

To top it all off we had a crazy idea to use a 20 ft circle screen in the center to be an analog clock. We spent time thinking of milestone moments in a person’s life which led to the conclusion that everything we are ever counting down to passes. Sometimes so quickly that we miss it.

In the final seconds of the countdown as the first session began, we stopped the clock. We wanted to pause time and hold on to the moment. We closed out the event by restarting the clock with a challenge to reset our lives. Check out this video of the opener and close.

Breaking News (Friday Morning App)

My favorite news app is Breaking News. It isn’t a news channel it is a news aggregator. It goes out and finds all the top news stories and then categorizes them. It is a great way to see what all the news channels, websites and blogs are saying about a single topic.

“Have you ever said, ‘That’s not breaking news!?’ Sometimes it feels like everything is breaking news these days, screaming for your attention.”

If you want to get notifications every time there is a new development in a particular story, just click the bell and Breaking News will tell you how often you can expect to receive notifications and then push them to your phone.

It’s great at helping you sift through the mess of normal news websites and apps.

Since Breaking News pulls content from “over 300 news organizations… including TV networks, local stations, wire services and newspapers large and small” they are my one stop for all news.

The best part is that they are on every platform. They started as a simple @breakingnews twitter account and now you can follow them from any device.

Check them out (Apps)

did you want to build a snowman?

Did You Want to Build a Snowman?

Today is the first day of spring! As I write this, the final lumps of snow are disappearing. Winter has come and gone once again and with it, the chance to build a snowman.

Every now and then, a great idea comes along that must be acted on immediately. A few years back I was working on promoting a Denver and the Mile High Orchestra concert. The band was on a FOX nationally aired band competition, The Next Great American Band. While sitting in a meeting, it all of a sudden clicked that the best opportunity we had to make a final push and get people to this concert was to run a television commercial during the show. In less than 3 days we went from an idea to air. A couple of calls to our local FOX affiliate followed by a couple of hours editing… a voice over and some graphics, then the wait.

Friday Night came and as Denver and the band finished their song, the host Dominic Bowden, threw it to a commercial break and boom there we were. Within the minutes following, we garnered more web hits than we had total in the previous week. On all accounts it was a success. Had we waited even another day, the opportunity to run the commercial would have been gone.

When the snow begins to accumulate, you only have a short amount of time to go out and build a snowman before the snow changes and it just doesn’t work. Next winter, go out and build a snowman… the opportunity doesn’t come around every day. And next time you get an idea that needs to be acted on, don’t hesitate. It may make the difference between an empty auditorium or a sold out concert.

Youth Advance 2013 (Stage Design)

2013-08-28 18.12.58 HDR

Each fall we hold a Back to School Retreat for Youth Groups. The title of the event is Advance. This year my team and I put together a back-lit Advance for the stage.

We started by setting up sheets of insulation foam with wood supports. Then projected and traced the word on to the foam using the font we were using for the poster. Then we used a hot knife to cut out the letters. The cutting process took longer then expected but we added a day to our normal setup.

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WeTransfer (Friday Morning App)

123974-90c8639b-07d8-429e-997f-0b0c2c48167a-transfer_44-original-1393951356WeTransfer is a great file transfer service that started in 2009. They are a clean alternative to other sites such as They let you send 2 GB files over email. And now they have an iPhone app!

Boost your productivity and preserve quality with the free WeTransfer mobile app.

Use it to transfer up to 10GB of photos and full resolution video files that are otherwise difficult to transfer from your phone without plugging it in.

Use it to quickly backup a bunch or all of your photos and then download the zip to your computer.

Quickly send friends and family a zip of your Christmas or vacation photos and video.

A  downside is that it only works with photos and videos that are in your camera roll but it’s a great app that has earned a spot on my phone!

via WeTransfer

Your Best Argument On Your Best Day

Your best argument on your best day can only impact someone’s life… but, Jesus can change it.

Over the years, I have gotten into a lot of late night theological debates on the most insignificant subjects. I don’t claim to be a great theologian, but I enjoy pretending to be. I love bringing up topics and taking the counter stance just to see how deep we can dig into why we believe what we believe.

When Rob Bell’s “Love Wins” came out, I was one of the few people I know that actually read the whole book…twice. I got into several deep discussions using some of his arguments to see how they held up. Sometimes the other people in the room would be swayed by an argument and concede its possibilities. Most of the time, however, someone would pull out a scripture verse that would open a new door of discussion. We would go around in circles unpacking different viewpoints.

One thing I learned through these discussions is

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