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Pastor Rick McDaniel

Forgive And Forget

By life, spirituality

Pastor Rick gave a profoundly impacting message at church this morning. It was all about forgiving those who have wronged you in the past and appologizing to those you’ve wronged yourself. I think everyone has both of these situations in their lives with at least one person, and I’m no exception. I generally don’t hold grudges against anyone, but there are one or two people who I need to apologize to for certain things. They’re actually mutual situations so I hope that by being the bigger person and reaching out to them to apologize, they might, too. But even if not, it will still make me feel better to right the wrong.

God forgives us for our sins by coming into a relationship with His son, Jesus Christ, and He commands us to do the same to others. He proclaims that there is nothing more essential in life than loving other people, and that’s essentially the basis of Christianity. That being said, I have a bit of work to do to make things right again in my life with a few people.

Time Management

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Pastor Rick gave what I thought to be one of his most inspiring messages ever today. It was all about time management. He’s done some great messages in the past and is probably the most impacting and inspirational speaker I’ve ever heard, but today his message really hit home.

In the service today, Pastor Rick gave a lot of great advice and wisdom about how to manage your time:

Evaluate your time priorities. This can be done (as I’m going to do) by keeping track of how you spend your time over the course of two weeks.

Busyness does not equal productivity. I am always busy with something or another. The whole week it seems I’m never free. But I’m finding that a lot of the time I’m not doing much of anything of any real worth or significance.

Establish time systems. This could mean many things. One example Pastor Rick gave was his own schedule. Every day, he gets up early in the morning and spends time in solitude praying and having study/research time to plan his messages. He’s also at home every night at 6:00 PM for dinner with his family. These two recurring events are set in stone in his weekly schedule, and are obviously very important to him. I need to figure out which things are the most important for me to do, and plan everything else around them on a recurring basis like he has done. Having set things to do at set times and days also makes it easier to say no to people when they ask you to do something, and that’s a big thing for me. I find it hard to tell people no when they ask me to help with or commit to doing something.

Eliminate time wasters. As you’ll read below, I’ve already gotten rid of a lot of my time wasters, but this is something I really need to work on more. Pastor Rick spoke about how you should delegate what’s important and find new ways to use wasted time, such as reading or catching up on something that needs completing when you’re waiting (for example at a doctor’s office).

I have some of the worst skills when it comes to time management out of anyone I know. I always have really good intentions of getting lots done, being productive, and accomplishing everything I need to do. In fact, despite my lack of priority-based planning, I have one of the most immaculately-organized iCal calendars ever (that picture is a screenshot of how my iCal looks on a weekly basis). It’s broken up into sub-calendars, the main ones being home, school, and church. I have everything from my classes at VCU to my weekly breakfast with Tori and dinner with Jen. From the looks of it, you’d think I was one of the most organized people ever, right? Not so much.

So why doesn’t it all work out in the nice, structured way it seems to by looking at my iCal? There are a couple of reasons. First off, I don’t seem to be able to stick to what should be my top priorities. It’s sometimes out of stress, lack of will power, tiredness, or sheer laziness. Other times it’s because something fun comes up and I end up going out with friends. All I know is I need to increase the amount of time I spend doing some things, reduce others, and maybe even completely eliminate a few. Most things are fine in moderation, I just need to find the right balance.

Sometimes the time I allot to certain tasks ends up getting wasted because I’m multitasking while I should be focused on a singular goal. I also get distracted (and spend too much time on) my Mac and iPhone. The biggest distraction involving both devices? Facebook. Up until today, I had a ridiculous connection to Facebook. On my computer, there’s a desktop program that flashes a little box in the upper right hand corner of my screen notifying me when someone writes on my wall or does some other action on my profile, I get an email with the same information, and then a text on my phone. Sometimes the Facebook email also goes to my phone. Now before you send out the “whitecoats” to haul me off to the nut farm, please understand that some of these notifications were in place from the time I first registered my Facebook account (almost two years ago), for example the emails. I just added one thing at a time and now I’m at this ludicrous level. I’m happy to say that as of today, I’ve completely eliminated all of my Facebook notifications on both my Mac and iPhone, turned off incoming email to my phone, and turned off the new mail notification sound on my computer so I don’t automatically open my email client and read it as it comes in.

In summary, here’s what I plan on changing with my schedule starting this week:

  • Allot more time to studying, working productively at church, and exercising
  • Spend less time on the computer, doing less-than-productive things, eating out, and not necessarily hang out with friends every night
  • Come up with the best balance of school, work, volunteering, and fun

I’m excited about finally getting a handle on my life and make time for the things I need to do and be able to accomplish so much more.

The Value Of Time

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Pastor Rick started a new message series entitled Time a few weeks ago, and I’ve got to say it’s probably the most impacting series he’s done to date (and he’s done a lot). The first week he talked about just how quickly life goes by. He made several analogies comparing your age with the time of day. I don’t remember exactly the ages and times he referenced, but if you take the waking hours (8:00 AM – 11:00 PM), if you’re 15 years old it’s about 10:30 AM. If you’re 30 it’s 12:00 noon. If you’re 50 it’s around 7:00 PM. Scary, huh? Time passes by more quickly than most of us realize. Today, Pastor Rick talked about how you should invest your time in things that have an eternal value and in things that will have a long-lasting impact.

All this got me thinking about just how funny time is. Sometimes I’ll do something and a few days later think that it feels like it’s been a week or two since I did it. Then, some event that comes around only once a year, take Christmas for example, and I feel like it just happened and the year flew by. It’s funny how different people perceive time in different ways.

One of the most interesting things Pastor Rick said is that people get along (or don’t) and associate with one another based on their time style. Some people prioritize their schedule. Others schedule their priorities. I’m definitely the first style (and sometimes I don’t have them in the right order at that) and I’m trying to become the second. It’s difficult, but I know I can do it if I keep at it.

To find out more about the Time series, visit www.highimpactliving.com.

Christmas At RCC

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This past week, Pastor Rick started his first message about the Christmas Season. The first message was all about giving. He talked about how much giving to God blesses you. One of his points was that you can’t outgive God. He’s talked about this in the past in other messages, and told numerous stories about how people who thought they didn’t have the money to give still gave, and how their lives were transformed and how God provided for them. I am without a job as of last Friday, but after hearing this message, I’ve decided I’m still going to tithe and give to the annual Christmas Offering next week because I’m faithful that God will help me to find another job soon.

Influence That Impacts

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Yesterday was Friend Day at Richmond Community Church. Pastor Rick started a new series, “Influence That Impacts.” He had some interesting insights into how we are influenced by other people and how we influence them, as well. I took some notes during the sermon. Here are a few great points he made:

  1.  “We become aware of what others’ influence makes us feel like, not how we make other people we influence feel.” This is so true. We all talk about how others make us feel, but we don’t often think about how what we do makes others feel.
  2. “It’s not where people are in their lives, it’s what they think they aren’t that holds them back.” Many people are held back by fear, especially fear of failure. Moreover, a lot of people think they can’t positively influence someone else’s life because of what they think they’re lacking or because of a shortcoming. I’ve experienced this before. We all have our downfalls, but we can still have a good influence on other people.
  3. “Your influence is determined by the choices you make.” If you’re going to have a positive influence on someone’s life, you need to make smart choices and set a good example.
  4. “There are three types of people, generally speaking- Well Poisoners (those who discourage others from reaching their goals), Lawn Mowers (absorbed in themselves), and Life Enhancers (positively influence others).” This pretty much summarizes people’s personalities if you think about it. People are either going to bring you down or uplift you, or just not care at all and tend solely to their own self-advancement.

This is going to be a great message series, full of insights about how to reach, connect with, and influence others in your life.